Anatomy of a claim:
What we see time and time again is the claim process and the resulting breakdown.
A claim is reported to your insurance agent or sometimes directly to the claims department. A report is taken and sometimes your carrier might take a recorded statement of what happened. Being truthful ensures a reported claim is as good as gold. There is no defense to the absolute truth.
Once the insurance company has the claim report they in turn assign your claim to an adjuster. The two types of adjusters are a "Staff adjuster, or Independent adjuster. A staff adjuster works exclusively for the insurance carrier. An independent adjuster works for many companies but is specifically hired by your insurance company to adjust your claim.
A common greeting is "Hi, my name is John Doe, I'm your adjuster!" Wrong, he is the carrier’s adjuster, period! If your car dealer says "we need to use ABC body shop we'll send your car right over there". If the body shop says to the dealer "don't send us any more work this week, we are too busy". What will the car dealership do? Stop using ABC is what they will do. You need your own evaluation of damages; don't take anyone’s word but your own.
As simple as that is, it's a quick way to breakdown communications and start a delay process. Insurance companies use adjusters who represent their interest. You should always have that second opinion. If your Doctor tells you to "go home you only have 3 months to live" would you not get a 2nd opinion? People who do not want to live go home, don't be the one to not get a 2nd opinion.
We point this out early on as we see too many people come to us late in the claim process and that makes for a difficult appraisal. Call us early. We can help you establish what the damages from an objective point of view; not that of an "outcome oriented vendor" like ABC body shop.
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