Insurance Companies Are Not Your Friend, Here’s Why!
After an accident it’s important to remember that insurance companies are not your friend. No matter how nice their representatives may sound over the phone, or when they meet with accident victims face to face, this tactic is a falsehood. Insurance companies use smiling faces, glowing reviews, and savvy advertising to trick accident victims into thinking they’re on the same side. And victims should never fall for it!
This writeup will provide our readers with the Top 5 reasons insurance companies are not friends, but “paper pushers” with the sole intention of denying compensation to those who deserve it. It’s for the reasons we’ll explore that it’s important to retain an experienced, Board Certified lawyer to represent your best interests after an accident.
Reason #1: Deny, Delay, Don’t Pay
Among the tactics used by insurance companies after claim is filed is Deny, Delay, Don’t Pay. This stall tactic is a common practice employed by insurance companies to keep victims from ever seeing a dollar of what they’re owed after an accident. This practice not only harms victims, but is downright deceitful in the way it’s deployed on such an arbitrary and regular basis.
The appalling statistics show that even accident victims with catastrophic claims are being forced out of the compensation they’re owed because the insurance company has begun the process of Deny, Delay, Don’t Pay. Keeping victims in the dark about their claim, hoping they’ll give up and “go away” after so many denials is primarily what the insurance companies depend on in an effort to save money, even though that’s the sole purpose of insurance companies! Sounds impossible right? The massive insurance industry that averages $30 billion a year in profits attempts to save money by denying those who have been injured in accidents the compensation they rightfully deserve. The protection beneficiaries paid for should be there when they need it most.
In truth, just because a policy holder (beneficiary) pays a monthly premium, it doesn’t mean the insurance company will uphold the obligations expected of them upon receipt of that monthly premium. The denial of a claim a policy holder knows is legitimate and could provide compensation necessary to repair or replace a vehicle, cover medical expenses, and provide for their family while out of work can cause unnecessary mental distress. It not only wastes time, but fighting the insurance company reduces quality of life. It’s important that before any claim is ever filed, the injured party has retained experienced legal representation to fight this common tactic.
Reason #2: Legitimate Claims Are Denied
Some of the nation’s largest insurance companies are known not for how many beneficiaries they’ve successfully helped after an accident, but for their deceptive denial practices. Big insurance companies have been known to deny legitimate (and sometimes catastrophic) claims because those in charge are told to meet a specified bottom line, no matter who they must deny to do it. Usually, the bottom line is completely arbitrary, a number made up by those in offices that the public will never even get to speak with.
The goal post in the insurance company’s proverbial “playbook” moves in a way that will never be fair to accident victims no matter where it’s placed. The insurance companies have an unfair advantage; there will never be level playing field when it comes to accident victims making a successful claim on the first attempt if they attempt to do so alone.
Attempting to fight the insurance company alone can also be a waste of time when the Statute of Limitations is running down after an accident. Attempting to fight the insurance company alone will never be successful, and a judge will deny any claim that exceeds the state’s Statute of Limitations no matter the extent of the injuries or the legitimacy of the claim.
Reason #3: Defense Hired Doctors
Who are “defense hired doctors”? They’re, as we discussed at length in Defense Hired Doctors: Common in Personal Injury Law, But Lawyers Must Prepare Clients! exactly what they sound like. After an accident, the insurance company will deploy these unethical healthcare providers to write down whatever they ask, even if it’s not the truth, or discredits the accident victim’s legitimate claim of pain and suffering. Personal Injury lawyers must prepare a client for a “DME” or Defense Medical Examination.
Upon examination, the lawyer must advise their client to remain honest about their pain and suffering, no matter how much the defense hired doctor tries to discredit their claim. More often than not, the insurance company purposely hires a physician to testify as to whether or not the victim is actually injured, and of course the defense hired doctor will reduce the victim’s pain and suffering to next to nothing!
Furthermore, when attempting to discredit a victim who has sustained life threatening injuries isn’t insulting enough to a legitimate claim made during mediation or trial, the defense hired doctor will usually, “miraculously” find that a victim they examined is not injured at all, or that their injuries did not occur as a result of their accident, but they suffered them prior, even years ago! This practice is wrong. That’s because employing defense hired doctors isn’t an ethical practice, in no way is it “fair and impartial”, as a Personal Injury claim is supposed to be, given that the injured party’s Personal Injury lawyer must provide the burden of proof.
Reason #4: Insurance Contracts Purposely Make No Sense!
When it comes to contracts, the average person should never be expected to understand the “word salad” that accompanies an insurance claim. Insurance contracts use terminology that requires a specific set of skills to understand, much like legalese used by lawyers (the only difference here being accident lawyers have the best interest of the client, where the insurance company does not). These contracts are not meant for the average person who isn’t employed by an insurance company to understand. The insurance companies don’t see people, they see ways to cut costs wherever possible. This includes purposely creating contracts that are impossible to understand while policy holders pay a premium for something they end up misinterpreting by no fault of their own.
This is common practice among most insurance companies: the more large, inexplicable words they use, the more the claimant will simply become exasperated and sign on the dotted line. This may not be “purposeful”, but it certainly serves a purpose on behalf of the insurance company in the long run. It’s another deceitful practice used to confuse victims into simply giving up.
The same deception goes for the fine print worked into nearly every insurance policy available to consumers. “Anti-concurrent” clauses in otherwise innocuous sounding insurance policies are buried under pages of fine print, leaving accident victims with no protection when they need it most, all due to something they had no idea they signed (and would not have signed had they known). These clauses are so obscure, they may not ever even come up until the victim needs to use their insurance policy most.
Reason #5: Insurance Companies Only Want to Cut Costs
Insurance companies only want to cut costs. The nicest phone representative still doesn’t have a policy holder’s best interest at heart. Many accident victims will find themselves becoming disarmed by the friendliness they’re greeted with when they call to make a claim on their own behalf. This is by design. The nicer the representative on the phone is to the policy holder, the less likely they’ll be to become upset, belligerent, or attempt to fight back when they’re given the news of their denied or delayed claim. Insurance companies don’t discriminate against whose claims they deny. Everyone from trucking accident victims to cancer patients have been denied the care they need during the most critical time in their lives.
The importance of an experienced Personal Injury lawyer to fight the insurance company
As we’ve stressed frequently on The Law Resource the importance of an experienced Personal Injury lawyer to fight the insurance company on behalf of the client is invaluable. Not only will an experienced accident lawyer have experience in the common tactics used to bully those injured in accidents out of the compensation they deserve, but the insurance companies know not to “mess with” Board Certified lawyers. Top lawyers (the 1% of accident lawyers that have achieved Board Certification) have established a successful reputation with these companies and will usually receive a favorable outcome due to their refusal to bend to “paper pushing” tactics, and their willingness to go all the way to trial if necessary.
It’s for these reasons no one injured in an accident should ever attempt to fight the insurance companies alone. It will never fall in favor of the victim no matter how catastrophic, and no matter the pain and suffering endured. A Personal Injury lawyer with hundreds of successful outcomes to their name after a serious or life-threatening accident is a necessity of which the importance of cannot be stressed enough.