Most people don’t know anything about the personal injury process – and that’s okay. In many cases, your car accident, including property damage and injuries, will be covered by insurance without any problems. It’s when the insurance company starts trying to deny your claim that you may need to consider hiring an Oregon personal injury lawyer.
There are many reasons why the insurance company might try to deny your claim, from liability disputes to previous injuries, and an attorney can help show the insurance company why your claim is valid.
1) Liability Disputes
This is the #1 most common reason the insurance company will deny your claim: they do not believe they should have to pay unless their insured actually caused the accident (which makes sense) but unfortunately this means that they have to show that the accident was caused by the other person.
There are many ways to show the insurance that you were not at fault, but it can take a lot of time and sometimes money. The best way to build your case is to gather information from witnesses, the police report, and even (if needed, which is rare) hiring an accident forensic investigator.
A good experienced personal injury will help front these costs, so that you don’t need to worry about paying for reports and specialists. They will also contact the witnesses for statements and compile them. All of this means that you can focus on recovery.
2) Previous Health Conditions or Injuries
Sadly, many insurance adjusters will try to find any reason to deny your claim. Which means that they will look through your medical records to find any other reason for your present injuries.
If the insurance adjuster is trying to attribute your injuries to other causes, like previous work injuries, etc., you have several options again. First, you can review your medical records and use them to emphasize how your medical history supports your injuries.
Even better, you can ask your doctor to write a “letter or causation” or a letter that states that your injuries were most likely caused by the accident, or that the accident acerbated your previous conditions.
Again, hiring an attorney can help a lot with this. The attorneys’ office will gather your medical records (fronting this cost), and go through them for you and then build your case. The attorney can also coordinate with your medical providers to get the medical bills paid by PIP.
3) Experience and Objectivity
We know you think it’ll be easy to be objective about your own case, but you may not be able to. Let’s face it – all the hard stuff you’ve had to go through, all the pain and inconvenience, probably means that you are tired, angry, and more emotional than usual. That fact, combined with the fact that you have never had to deal with the personal injury process, could hurt your case. No insurance adjuster wants to deal with someone who is unreasonable and does not understand how much their claim is really worth.
But if you hire a personal injury lawyer, your attorney will be objective and be able to present the facts of your case with an eye to the important (i.e. most relevant to the insurance company, not you personally) details. And the personal injury attorney will know, from experience and knowledge of case history in Oregon, where to start his negotiations with the insurance company based on the value of her claim.