Allstate Car Accident Lawyer
Allstate has been in business for nearly 90 years. The company is one of the largest insurance providers in the United States and has nearly $40 billion of annual revenues. At the same time, Allstate’s business practices have come under fire in numerous different forums. The company has been fined by several states for overcharging its customers. In addition, Allstate routinely faces class action suits for its practices in connection with its medical and auto insurance.
What You Know, Allstate Knows More
When you are dealing with Allstate, know that you are likely at an information disadvantage. The company has tens of millions of customers and an extensive amount of claims data. The chances are that the company knows the exact value of your insurance claim. Allstate uses a software program called Colossus that is used by many insurance companies. This is how they come up with the value of your settlement. The truth is that this software program is not an objective black box like some claim that it is. Allstate was fined by 45 states for $10 million back in 2010 for the way in which it used the program. While Allstate was not accused of systematically using the software to reduce the value of claims, it was found to have not used the software in a uniform and consistent manner across the country in a manner that gave correct claim values.
It is important to know that the values that are produced by Colossus are not necessarily what Allstate will give you as your settlement. It is simply what your claim may be worth, and there is nothing to stop Allstate from offering you a number below this value. In fact, this is what auto insurers routinely do since they do not make money by giving you top dollar for your settlement.
Be Careful When Accepting Allstate's First Settlement Offer
It is a regular business practice for insurers like Allstate to lowball your initial settlement offer. They lose nothing by trying to settle claims for a lower number. In their thinking, the worst that happens is that you can reject their settlement offer. At the same time, they are hoping that you will either be ignorant of the true value of your claim or desperate for the money and will accept their settlement offer without hesitation. However, Allstate has been known for trying to punish insured parties who reject their initial offer by denying their claims or further trying to lower their settlements. Know that the law will protect you if this happens.
When armed with this knowledge, you can safely reject Allstate’s initial settlement offer. You should know that they are not making you their best offer, and they may have some room to negotiate with you. Allstate is guided by a virtual army of actuaries and lawyers that counsel its every step so their course of action is coordinated and deliberate. Their organization is multi-layered so as to provide them with the maximum possible amount of defense.
While there are laws that prohibit Allstate from unreasonably lowballing its initial settlement offer, that does not stop the insurance company from using negotiating tactics. Many people think that they have to take what the insurance company offers, but each state has laws that are based on the Unfair Claims Settlement Practices Acts. Theoretically, this should regulate a company like Allstate’s business practices. However, Allstate has a team of lawyers that help them push the boundaries of what they are allowed to do under the law. All the while, the average person does not have a concept of what is going on in the background and why Allstate is doing what it does.
Have Your Own Attorney
All of this adds up to the fact that you should not deal with Allstate without an attorney of your own. Hopefully, the accident that has necessitated your claim is your first one. As a result, you are not an expert in how claims work and the practices of auto insurance companies. However, a personal injury attorney deals with these companies regularly and is wise to the tactics of insurance companies. Your personal injury lawyer will fight as hard as they can within the law to keep the auto insurer from taking advantage of you.
The personal injury attorney can help you in dealing with the insurance company from the outset of your case. Companies like Allstate may deal differently with claimants based on whether they have an attorney. Before you can even talk about a settlement, the insurance companies must make a determination of liability. Your lawyer can help you through this phase of the claim in order to make sure that you make the most effective presentation of your version of the facts. If Allstate is not your insurance company, but they are trying to contact you anyway, your attorney will help keep them at bay given that they do not have the right to speak with you.
When it comes to negotiating a settlement, your attorney can handle the back and forth with Allstate and best present your position to the company. If a settlement offer is made, a personal injury attorney will know how much your claim is worth and will be able to advise you on how far from the true value of your claim Allstate’s offer is. When it comes to deciding whether to accept a settlement offer or litigate the case, your lawyer will be able to advise you of your legal position.
How The Eichholz Law Firm Can Help You
When you are seeking an attorney to help you deal with Allstate, The Eichholz Law Firm has years of experience in fighting for their clients to get top dollar for their auto accident claims. We get results for our clients because we are not afraid to fight for them when it is necessary.
If you have a matter in which you are dealing with Allstate, do not simply take what they give you. Hire aggressive counsel to help maximize the value of your claim. If you have been in an accident and need legal help, call us today.