How to Negotiate an Injury Claim with GEICO Insurance
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GEICO, like all insurance companies, is in the business of making money. GEICO makes money by paying out less money than they receive in monthly insurance premiums, and in keeping with that goal, GEICO claims adjusters will attempt to give you the smallest settlement possible.
GEICO claims adjusters have experience and the weight of one of the largest insurance companies in the country behind them. However, if you are organized, well-prepared, and have the proper documentation, you are more likely to be satisfied with the settlement amount that you accept.
Beginning Your Claim
After being involved in an accident with a GEICO policyholder, you must contact the insurer to file a claim. A GEICO adjuster will then be assigned to your case.
This person will gather all the information available about the accident, including police reports, statements from everyone involved in or who saw the accident, photos from the accident scene, medical bills and records, and past insurance payouts for similar accidents and injuries. It's important to note that anything you say to the adjuster will be used as they attempt to gain a clearer picture of their liability. The adjuster will do everything in their power to decrease the amount of money owed to you.
How to Settle a Claim
Keep records and documentation of everything you spend because of the accident. Save your receipts from the auto body shop, the chiropractor, and any doctor’s visits. Document the days of work you are forced to miss because of pain or doctor’s appointments. Make notes of other ways in which the accident has negatively affected your quality of life.
Using all that documentation as a guide, make an initial offer to GEICO. Making the first offer will center the ensuing negotiation around your number rather than a lower number given by the claims adjuster. Don’t be afraid to demand what you believe you are owed, but don’t be outrageous. An offer of $10 million on a claim realistically worth $10,000 will get things off on the wrong foot.
Before making the initial offer, it is important that you know the absolute minimum amount that you are willing to accept to settle the claim. Knowing this will allow you to maintain focus throughout the negotiations.
If you feel like you’ve done all that you can do and have not received a fair counteroffer from GEICO, it might be time to consider contacting a personal injury attorney. Fair or not, GEICO adjusters will behave differently in negotiations with an experienced accident lawyer. In speaking with an attorney who has successfully negotiated with them before, adjusters may be more willing to give concessions and arrive at an offer that you are comfortable with. Whichever route you choose, don’t panic; if your demands are based on provable facts, you have a good chance of winning your claim.
Our Dallas Car Accident Lawyers Can Help
At Zinda Law Group, our Dallas personal injury attorneys have the knowledge, experience, and resources necessary to fight the insurance companies on your behalf, and we can help you seek maximum compensation for medical bills, property damage, lost income, pain and suffering, and any other damages stemming from the accident.
We also work on a contingency fee basis, which means you'll never pay any upfront costs, and fees are only collected if we achieve a favorable verdict, judgment, or settlement.
Call Zinda Law Group today at (800) 863-5312 for a free consultation with one of our skilled Dallas car accident lawyers.
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