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Secrets of Accident Claims Against GEICO Revealed!

Posted in Car Accidents on June 6, 2024

Secrets of Accident Claims Against GEICO Revealed!

Founded in 1948 as the Government Employees Insurance Company, GEICO today has over 16 million active auto insurance policies covering over 25 million vehicles. This makes it one of the top ten largest auto insurance companies in the United States. Chances are that you or someone you know has an insurance policy through GEICO.

The company tries to attract new business through disarming ads featuring soft-spoken lizards or relatable cavemen. However, as with any insurance company in New York, the GEICO claims process can be frustrating and confusing. Your GEICO claim can be delayed or denied if you do not take the right steps to present and pursue it.

Here are key secrets of the accident claims process you need to know if you are filing a claim against GEICO in New York.

Tips That GEICO Does Not Want You To Know

Suppose that you are hurt in a New York traffic accident, and the at-fault driver’s liability insurance company is GEICO. Under these circumstances, you may be entitled to file a claim against the company to recover damages.

In filing your claim, keep the following tips in mind:

You Need a Lawyer To Help You

There is a power dynamic at play when a private individual files a claim with a company like GEICO. Because many people are unfamiliar with the car insurance claims process, you may end up settling your case on GEICO’s terms for far less than you need.

However, an experienced attorney can level the playing field. Your attorney can ensure you don’t accept a lowball offer and can negotiate a settlement that benefits you, not the company.

Do Not Give a Recorded Statement Without Your Lawyer Present

Once you have filed a claim with GEICO, expect a representative to contact you shortly thereafter. Initially, they will introduce themselves and explain the claims process. At that time, they may ask you to give a recorded statement of what happened and describe this step as a routine part of the claims process.

You do not have to — nor should you — give a recorded statement to GEICO without having a lawyer by your side. These recorded statements become the version of events to which you and your claim are tied. If evidence does not match your recorded statement, GEICO can deny your claim.

You Do Not Have To Allow Access To All of Your Medical Records

If you were hospitalized or received any post-crash medical care, GEICO will need to see those records to process your claim. Some claims representatives and adjusters may try to get you to sign a release that allows GEICO full and unrestricted access to all of your medical records, though, whether related to your accident or not.

Once it has access to your medical records, GEICO personnel can scour them and look for possible pre-existing conditions. GEICO can then limit your claim by claiming some of your losses are not related to your accident, citing these pre-existing conditions. For this reason, you should have your lawyer review any medical records released before signing.

Never Accept the First Settlement Offer From GEICO

GEICO is a for-profit company that exists to generate profits for its shareholders. It is the company’s bottom line, not your needs, that drives GEICO’s business. Therefore, when a representative presents you with an initial settlement offer for your claim, you will want to resist the temptation to accept immediately.

This initial settlement typically represents the minimum amount of money that GEICO is willing to part with to resolve your claim. The company did not arrive at this number by considering your expenses or ongoing needs. Instead, this first proposed settlement amount is designed to placate you while limiting the amount of money GEICO pays to resolve your claim.

Remember That GEICO Serves Its Shareholders, Not You

Keeping the for-profit mentality of insurance companies in mind is vital as you navigate the claims process. By staying aware that an insurance company serves its shareholders rather than you, you can have a better idea of what tactics to expect from a representative.

For instance, a claims representative might try to tell you:

  • Your vehicle is totaled
  • Your hospital bills are not worth as much as you claim they are
  • You do not have ongoing medical needs
  • Your persistence in seeking fair payment for your claim will only delay your case
  • There is nothing they can do, and your settlement figure is derived from a computer program

Some of these statements may be true, while others may be debatable. Having an experienced car accident lawyer helping you with your claim is the best way to uncover the facts of your case and ensure you receive a fair settlement, regardless of which insurance company you are filing against.

You May Still Need To File a New York Car Accident Lawsuit

No matter how seriously you are hurt or what expenses you face, GEICO is only obligated to pay up to the applicable policy’s limits. This amount may not fully compensate you for your present and future needs and expenses. Once GEICO has paid the amount stated on the policy, though, it is your responsibility to pursue any other compensation you need.

If you have been severely hurt, the only way you might fully recover all of the compensation you need and deserve may be to file a car accident lawsuit. You would file this suit against the at-fault driver and any other parties that may have played a role in the accident. If successful, you could collect additional compensation from those at-fault parties.

Contact Our Car Accident Law Firm in New York, NY

When you’re handling a car accident claim with GEICO or any other insurance company in New York, approach the process knowing that the company does not necessarily have your interests in mind. At any time, an attorney can step in on your behalf and work to secure the best possible outcome for your claim.

If you need legal assistance, contact the New York City car accident lawyers at Law Offices of Jay S. Knispel Personal Injury Lawyers at your nearest location to schedule a free consultation.

We have two convenient locations in New York:

Law Offices of Jay S. Knispel Personal Injury Lawyers – New York City Office
450 7th Ave #1605
New York, NY 10123
(212) 564-2800

Law Offices of Jay S. Knispel Personal Injury Lawyers – Brooklyn Office
26 Court St Suite 2511
Brooklyn, NY 11242
(718) 802-1600

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