If you are in a car accident with a negligent driver, you will likely need to speak with insurance representatives. Although Oregon is a fault accident state and you will typically file a claim with the at-fault party’s insurance company, you may need to communicate with your own company. When approaching these conversations, it is important to come with a few careful questions in mind.
Oregon is a fault accident state, meaning that the at-fault driver will likely pay for your damages using his or her required liability insurance. However, there are some situations where the at-fault driver may be unable to pay for your damages. In other cases, you may need additional financial assistance while waiting for your case to resolve.
You can purchase additional coverage, such as underinsured/uninsured motorist coverage (UM/UIM) and collision coverage to pay for these additional damages. Your insurance company should tell you what coverage you have and what it will pay for.
The at-fault driver is generally responsible for paying for your medical expenses, but your bills will accumulate while you are waiting for your case to resolve. In these situations, you may require financial assistance.
In these situations, personal injury protection (PIP) insurance can help. This optional coverage pays for your medical expenses, along with lost wages and other benefits, regardless of who was responsible for the accident.
If you have this coverage, ask your insurance company what to do with your medical bills. The company may instruct you to send your bills directly to them; before doing so, however, make copies of your bills and retain them for you and your lawyer.
After an accident, your insurance company will require you to provide evidence of the crash. You will need to gather information such as the other driver’s name, contact details, and insurance information, as well as his or her license plate number. You will also need to take photographs of the scene and collect witnesses’ contact information so you can contact them at a later date.
Your insurance company may require you to provide this evidence and additional details, such as the crash’s time, date, and location. Ask your insurance company what information it needs and contact your lawyer to begin the investigation.
After an accident, you may wonder if you should speak with the other driver and his or her insurance company. The short answer is no—and your insurance company should provide this advice to you.
It is important to remember that the goal of the other company is to protect its bottom line; it is not in the company’s best interest to provide maximum compensation to you. The company can use any statement you make against you, using inconsistencies to deny or reduce your award. Speak to your own insurance company and allow your attorney to handle conversations with the at-fault driver’s carrier.
Navigating the car accident insurance process can be a challenge without an attorney on your side. A Portland car accident lawyer will handle all aspects related to your claim, including communicating with the at-fault party’s company.
Your attorney will negotiate with adjusters, evaluate any settlement offers you receive and advocate for your maximum possible recovery during each stage. As soon as you receive medical attention, contact an Oregon car accident attorney to discuss your legal options.