No. As a party or witness to an auto accident, you have no obligation to speak with any person except a police officer. It doesn’t matter whether they are from an insurance company, lawyer’s office, or somewhere else.
It has become common practice for many auto insurance companies to telephone a person involved in a car accident shortly following the incident to ask them questions about how the accident occurred or what types of injuries they may have sustained. While such questions may seem relatively innocent, they are coming from the company that will likely be responsible for paying you compensation for your injuries. Insurance companies often use these statements against you in order to minimize the value of your case and thus offer a low claim settlement, or even to reject your claim altogether. Consequently, most accident attorneys strongly advise against giving any statements following a car accident.
Instead of speaking with the insurance company following your accident, you should write a letter of notification to the at-fault driver's insurer notifying them of the accident. Include only your name, date and location of the accident, the nature of your injuries, and the date of the letter. After sending the letter of notification, allow your attorney to deal with the insurance companies. Attorneys know how much information is necessary to turn over. Giving away too much information, such as a medical authorization form, may harm your chances of receiving a fair settlement.
Also remember that when giving a statement to a law enforcement officer or the other driver after an accident, never admit fault, even if you think you might have been at fault. Since police reports become part of the case record, this and any other statement you make could be used by the insurer against you at a later point.
Additional Benefit of Hiring a Lawyer To Help with Your Illinois Car Accident Case
One of the benefits of having an attorney represent you in a car accident case is that once you have legal representation, the insurance company cannot contact you directly. If they want to ask you questions about your case, they must go through your lawyer. At Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC, we always work with your best interests in mind. We simply will not allow an insurance company to get an unfair advantage because they wish to get information from you.
We have experience handling Illinois car accident cases involving almost every auto insurance company in the U.S., and we have dealt with insurance defense attorneys from all parts of the state. We know the rules and the tricks these companies use to reduce the amounts they are obligated to pay you. Contact our office today for a free review of your case so we can put you on the road to getting the compensation you deserve.