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After a car accident, the last thing you need is a denied insurance claim. After all, repairing your damaged vehicle and getting the medical care you need can help you find closure. However, it’s not uncommon to have your perfectly valid claim denied.
In this blog, the Andy Citrin Injury Attorneys team outlines four common reasons insurance companies use to reject car accident claims claim, and how a lawyer can help you fight back.
When you file a claim with the insurance company, you’ll work with a claims adjuster. This person is responsible for managing your case, reviewing the your evidence, and communicating with you. Typically, adjusters want to settle cases as quickly and efficiently as possible. To close out cases, they use a variety of excuses and justifications.
When a crash happens, your body fills with stress response hormones — adrenaline, cortisol, and norepinephrine. These natural responses help you survive a dangerous situation by overriding pain signals, but they can also mask signs of a serious injury. Immediately after a crash, it can be easy to miss sprains or strains, soft tissue damage, and even internal bleeding. Many survivors decide to skip the doctor’s office because they don’t think they’re “that hurt.”
Unfortunately, when you don’t go to the doctor, the insurance company may claim that your injuries are minor. “If they were that hurt, they would have gone straight to the ER,” they’ll argue.
However, we’ve helped a lot of people who delayed medical treatment for a brief time. In fact, some injuries, like herniated discs, TBIs, and nerve damage, take time to develop. Still, it’s in your best interest to see a doctor as soon as possible—and make sure to tell them about your car wreck.
Insurance adjusters love pre-existing conditions. They often argue that your pain wasn’t caused by the crash, blaming your pre-existing arthritis or another chronic condition instead. However, these claims are not consistent with Alabama or Mississippi law.
Under a rule called “the eggshell skull doctrine,” the companies must take you as you are. This means that they can’t punish you or withhold compensation because you have a condition that’s outside of your control. If a car accident accelerates or worsens an existing condition, the at-fault driver is still responsible.
An insurance company should never deny your claim on these grounds, and if they do, it’s in your best interest to call Andy Citrin Injury Attorneys right away.
Victim blaming is another popular insurance company tactic. In both Alabama and Mississippi, insurance companies can reduce or deny a claim if you were partially at-fault for an accident. However, the exact rules vary depending on where the crash happened:
To reduce the value of your claim, the insurance adjuster will search the accident report and witness statements for reasons to blame you. Something as minor as an apology can lead to a denied claim—especially in Alabama.
If you’re being accused of causing the accident that hurt you, you should politely refuse to sign anything or make additional statements until you talk to an injury lawyer.
Depending on your circumstances, multiple insurance policies may cover your claim, including the at-fault driver’s liability policy and your uninsured/underinsured motorist and medical payment coverage policies. It’s important that you file claims with every available insurance company.
However, it’s common for the insurer to deny your claim, citing various procedural reasons: the policy has lapsed, your claim falls into an exclusion, or the at-fault driver didn’t have permission to use the vehicle. Sometimes, these excuses could be a sign of bad faith — when the company violates its duty to cover valid claims.
To fight back, you’ll need help from an experienced injury lawyer who can carefully analyze the insurance policies, investigate your claims, and identify precisely how much compensation you’re owed.
At Andy Citrin Injury Attorneys, we’ve devoted our careers to fighting for injured victims and their families. No one should be unfairly denied the help they need after a crash. If you or someone you love is struggling after a serious car accident, don’t hesitate to reach out to us. We have a track record of successful litigation and aggressive legal strategies that deliver real results.
The content provided here is for informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice on any subject.
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