Mark Roman | September 13, 2023 | Car Accidents
GEICO Insurance Company is one of the largest insurers to provide automobile insurance in the United States. Therefore, even if you don’t have GEICO as your car insurance company, there is a good chance you might have to file a claim with GEICO because they are another driver’s provider.
The process of filing a car accident claim with a major auto insurance company should be straightforward. However, insurance companies like GEICO will always put their best interests and profits over the well-being of injured victims.
Before you begin the claims process, you should know these things about GEICO insurance claims:
File Your Claim with GEICO as Soon as Possible
Filing an insurance claim is not the same as settling an insurance claim. You do not want to settle your claim before you complete medical treatment and your doctor provides an impairment rating. However, you want to file your claim as soon as possible so that you can settle the property damage portion of your claim.
Consider contacting a car accident lawyer for a free consultation. It is not wise to talk with GEICO or an insurance adjuster about your injury claim before meeting with a lawyer. The company records telephone calls, and something you say could be used against you later in your case.
Maintain Accurate Records
Detailed documentation of your financial losses is essential for maximizing your recovery amount. Economic damages include out-of-pocket expenses, medical bills, lost wages, and other costs related to the accident or your injuries.
Additionally, document your non-economic damages or “pain and suffering” damages. Take photographs of your injuries during your recovery to demonstrate the extent of the injuries. Make notes about your recovery, including the severity of your pain, tasks you cannot perform, and your emotional state.
Do not turn these records over to GEICO. Instead, give them to your attorney to use when they prepare a settlement demand letter.
Ask Your Physician to Be Specific in Their Treatment Plan
If your injuries require long-term treatment or extensive procedures, ask your physicians to be as specific as possible. Stating you might need or could need treatment makes it sound like the treatment is optional. Instead, ask the doctor to clarify any statements that could create confusion or be subject to different interpretations.
Do not sign medical authorizations for GEICO to obtain medical records. In many cases, the insurance adjuster does not explain that you are giving the company access to your entire medical history. Instead, allow your attorney to provide relevant records with the settlement demand letter.
Monitor the Progress of Your GEICO Claim
If you are not represented by an attorney, you must keep a close watch on the progress of your insurance claim. You are responsible for ensuring that you submit all required documentation and that the information is complete and correct. You are also responsible for knowing and meeting deadlines.
If you hire a lawyer, your attorney handles all these matters for you. They’ll prepare the forms and documents to file with the insurance company.
Your Damages Could Be Worth More Money
GEICO will try to pay as little as possible to settle your claim. The company is not required to tell you if your final settlement is lower than the value of your damages.
Insurance adjusters protect the company. In most cases, the initial settlement offer from an insurance company is much lower than the value of the claim.
Alternatively, the company might ask you to make an offer. Suppose you are unfamiliar with the types of damages you are entitled to receive, including non-economic damages and out-of-pocket costs. In that case, it can be difficult to negotiate a fair settlement. Most individuals are unfamiliar with damages, so allowing an attorney to negotiate a settlement for you is better.
GEICO Might Blame You for Causing the Car Accident
A tactic used by many insurance companies is to blame the victim, even though the victim might not have contributed to the cause of the accident. Companies still use allegations of comparative fault when the person has an attorney. However, an insurance adjuster might try this tactic to intimidate someone representing themselves.
Florida recently changed its comparative fault laws to add a 51% bar. The insurance adjuster might tell you that you could lose everything if you do not accept the settlement offer. If you are being blamed for contributing to the cause of a car crash, contact a New Port Richey car accident attorney immediately for advice.
You do not need an attorney to file a car accident claim with GEICO. However, taking advantage of a free consultation with an attorney is always in your best interest before proceeding on your own.
Contact the Florida Car Accident Law Firm of Roman Austin Personal Injury Lawyers for Help Today
For more information, please contact the legal team of Roman Austin Personal Injury Lawyers for a free initial consultation with a Car Accident lawyer in Florida. We have four convenient locations in Florida: Clearwater, New Port Richey, and Tampa.
Roman Austin Personal Injury Lawyers – Clearwater Office
1811 N. Belcher Road, Suite I-1
Clearwater, FL 33765
Roman Austin Personal Injury Lawyers – Congress Ave Office
2360 Congress Avenue
Clearwater, FL 33763
Roman Austin Personal Injury Lawyers – Tampa Office
6601 Memorial Hwy Suite 202
Tampa, FL 33615
Roman Austin Personal Injury Lawyers – New Port Richey Office
2515 Seven Springs Blvd.
New Port Richey, FL, 34655