Filing a Car Accident Claim in California

Guidance from a Long Beach Car Accident Attorney

In order to recover compensation after a car accident, it may be necessary for you to file an insurance claim. Unfortunately, insurance companies can make it very difficult for victims to obtain their rightful dues. To ensure that you have support through this process, speak to a Long Beach personal injury lawyer at the Overett Group. Our team is well-equipped to help you create a solid case, as well as safeguard your rights while you are dealing with insurance companies. It is important to note that you must file your insurance claim within two years of the date of the accident, so call us as soon as possible and we can begin investigating your case.

How do I file an insurance claim?

Before you actually file the claim, there are a few pieces of information that you will need to collect. Right after the accident, you should get the other driver's name, contact info, and insurance information. The insurance information should include the name of the insurance company and the policy number. It can also be beneficial to note the make and model of the other car, as well as the license plate number.

Next, you should get in touch with an attorney at our firm before you make any sort of claim to the insurance companies. Our team can help advise you on what to say or not say. Insurance companies may try to get you to sign improper documents or twist your words so that they can get out of paying you. A Long Beach car accident lawyer at the Overett Group can help you avoid these types of issues. Our legal team can also help you decide if you want to file a "first party" claim with your own insurance company, or a "third party" claim with the other person's insurance company.

When you and your attorney are ready to file, you will need to include your full name, the date of the accident, your insurance policy number and the dates that your policy is effective until. They will also need the contact information and license numbers of the other drivers involved in the accident. An official police report will have this information if you were not able to take it down. In this statement, you may also be required to give the details of the accident, such as how it occurred, the weather conditions, and the time of day. If you decide to do this over the phone, it is important that you send in a written statement as well. Written documentation throughout the whole process is highly advised, since it reduces that ability of the insurance company to deny that you gave them certain information.

If the claim is disputed, then you may also need to talk to the other driver's insurance company. This is also the time to bring up any witnesses that were at the scene so they can attest to the truth. Again, make sure to file a written statement with the other insurance company as well, and get the name of the representative to whom you spoke.

After you officially file the claim, your insurance company will contact you again so you can speak with a claims adjuster. This representative will most likely ask you to detail the accident and provide proof of damage or bodily injury. Damages to your vehicle may be proven with pictures or your auto mechanic, while bodily injury may be shown by revealing medical bills. Once the adjuster inspects the vehicles and speaks to the other driver's insurance company, as well as any other relevant sources, they will make an investigation decision.

What if I don't agree with the insurance company's settlement?

If the insurance company offers you a settlement that is not sufficient to pay for your actual damages, then our team will be by your side to fight the decision. We will be sure to do our own investigation to assess the amount that you do deserve, and then fight to make sure that you get that amount! Be sure not to accept any payment until we have done all we can to get your proper dues. We can help you file another claim in a small claims court or seek other litigation. Insurance companies have a large incentive to deny your claim and keep investing the money you pay them, instead of using it to cover your damages.

Get in touch with our firm before it's too late! We have a 100% success rate.