Drivers, passengers, and pedestrians may become find themselves the victims of a negligent motor vehicle operator. Whether hit by a truck, car, motorcycle, or another vehicle, the possibility to file a claim against the driver’s auto insurance policy may provide a financial solution. Accident victims might find the process of filing a claim preferable to drawn-out litigation in a Tennessee court. Claimants might need to understand a few points about auto insurance claims, though.
Liability claims and other coverage options
When hurt by another driver’s actions, the claimant files a “third-party” claim. That is, the injured driver does not file against his/her insurance policy but the one carried by the negligent driver.
The auto insurance company only pays out on liability claims when the insured is at fault. Therefore, the evaluation may look to see whether the claimant contributed to the accident. A victim’s partial contribution to the accident might complicate the insurance claim.
Be aware that insurance only pays to the policy’s limits. If the driver only carries $50,000 in liability coverage, then that’s the maximum the insurance company pays. Suing the driver beyond the policy could address additional losses. Some drivers may carry umbrella policies with excess insurance. Umbrella policies could carry $1 million in liability coverage.
Dealing with the insurance company
The insurance company requires evidence regarding injuries and losses. The provider performs an investigation to determine losses and who was liable. Hiring an attorney to represent a claimant to the insurance company might be worthwhile. An attorney could prepare and present thorough evidence.
The insurance company might make an unreasonably low offer. An attorney could counter with a more equitable one and negotiate for a fair settlement. If a claim ends up denied, an appeals process may follow. In some situations, filing a lawsuit against the insurance company could be necessary.
A motor vehicle accident (MVA) insurance claim could prove more complicated than victims realize. Hiring a personal injury attorney to deal with the insurance company and address settlement negotiations might be beneficial.