If you’ve been injured in an automobile accident in the Las Vegas area and are hoping you’ll receive sizable compensation from an insurance company, I have some important news for you: you may be for in an exhausting, infuriating and time consuming battle.

There are common strategies used by insurance companies to fool people like you into taking less money than you deserve after an automobile accident, sometimes much less. They may even deny your claim altogether.

The more you know about what to expect from an insurance company after an accident, the better you will be able to arm yourself against these types of tricks.

We’ve all heard the commercials of insurance companies, designed to give the impression that a team of competent, caring professionals is waiting in the wings to come to our aid after an automobile accident.

Insurance company adjusters are rewarded for minimizing company losses and your payout.

Because of this expert marketing, many consumers are under the mistaken impression that their insurance company is their friend, and is looking out for their best interest. They rush to call the insurance company right after the accident, and believe that the best strategy is to do whatever the insurance company tells them to do.

In my experience of 25 years in the Las Vegas area dealing with insurance companies on behalf of people just like you, I can tell you they are most certainly not your friend, and are not looking out for you.

Insurance companies are for-profit businesses looking out for the bottom line, and for their shareholders. Insurance adjusters are praised by their superiors and promoted when they minimize claims and payouts as much as possible. That is their job. Please, never forget that.

Don't forget, it's the insurance adjusters job to minimize your payout.

Here are five things you might hear from your insurance company (and what to do if this happens to you):

  1. “You need to sign this paperwork and submit to a recorded interview as soon as possible”. Insurance companies know that the sooner they get you to talk after an accident, the more likely you will be woozy and confused and not thinking clearly, particularly if you retained injuries.

    Most people are very emotional and upset after an automobile accident, and are at their most vulnerable. Insurance companies want to question you when you’re in this fuzzy and possibly panicked state of mind, because you are likely to say the wrong thing, that they can use against you later to either deny your claim or minimize your compensation amount.

    Remember: insurance adjusters are rewarded the less they pay out in claims. Because of this, they become experts at finding any tiny detail in your statements that they can use against you.
  2. “You need to see one of the repair shops in our network”. Some insurance companies even force you, before purchasing a policy, to select a repair shop from an approved list.

    If you get into an accident, you will be expected to see this repair shop to estimate the damages to your car. But make no mistake: these repair shops work for the insurance company, and are used specifically to under report the amount of damages involved. They may even use cheap parts when repairing your car, or leave some repairs undone.

    My advice is to avoid signing on with any insurance companies that dictate where you need to have repair work and estimates done after an accident. In truth, in spite of what the insurance company may tell you, you are entitled to take your car to an auto repair shop you know and trust.

    If your policy doesn’t explicitly state where you must take your car after an accident, and they try to steer you to a repair shop of their choice, fight back and insist on taking the car where you want, not where they want.
  3. “I’m not available to take your call at the moment. Please leave a message”. You may find yourself on the receiving end of the “sit and wait” strategy employed by insurance companies in order to frustrate you into giving up and going away. This happens all the time.

    If you turn down the adjuster’s first low-ball offer in compensation, because it is too low, their next tactic may be to ignore you, and stop returning your calls. You may get transferred to other departments or adjusters, who claim not to be able to locate your file. If you do ever get your adjuster on the phone, they tell you that you filled out the paperwork incorrectly, or that you didn’t file your claim in time – any excuse to discourage you to the point that you just give up and go away. This strategy is surprisingly effective, which is why they use it.

    If your adjuster stops returning your calls, and you find yourself being given the runaround by your insurance company, don’t stand for it and don’t give up.

    The best way to get them to snap to attention and start returning your calls immediately, and with a helpful attitude, is to have an automobile accident lawyer start contacting them on your behalf. You will be somewhat shocked when you see for yourself how effective this is.
  4. "You should have read your policy”. You may be in for quite a shock if the insurance company tries to deny your claim, even though the accident is clearly the other person’s fault and you are fully covered. You would be further shocked to know how common this is. Major well-known insurance conglomerates have been sued and punished for this unethical behavior, but it continues.

    For example, an insurance company can deny you coverage after a collision if they deem that your car was damaged intentionally by the other party, and that it wasn’t an “accident.” They will cite an obscure clause in your policy that allows them to do this. You will be left high and dry with thousands of dollars in medical bills and a wrecked car.

    If an insurance company unfairly denies your claim after an accident, call a Las Vegas automobile accident lawyer immediately for a free consultation. Do not let them get away with this. Fight back.
  5. “You don’t need to see a lawyer”. Automobile accident lawyers are the devil to insurance adjusters, because lawyers know exactly how to force the adjuster to treat you with respect and to pay out the maximum amount in compensation to which you are entitled.

    Because of this, insurance companies routinely tell claimants that they don’t need a lawyer to represent them. Some companies even prepare glossy brochures for this purpose: convincing you that a lawyer is completely unnecessary, when they know otherwise.

What’s the #1 strategy for calling the insurance company’s bluff and forcing them to play fair with you? Get an attorney working on your claim. You’ll be amazed how quickly this speeds up the process of you getting your check and getting on with your life.

My firm, Day & Nance, offer free consultations and doesn’t charge you a dime if your case isn’t successful. We don’t see any compensation unless you do.

It takes a shark to fight a shark, and many people find out the hard way that the insurance companies are not only not “on your side,” but are ruthless in their aim to minimize your compensation amount. Having you vulnerable, unprotected and trusting is exactly what the insurance companies want. See their game for it is, and don’t play. Get protection.

Call me for a consultation today, and let me handle the insurance company, while you focus on rest and recovery and healing from your injuries.

Last updated on Aug 7, 2014.