Liberty Mutual Car Accident Lawyer
Claims and Settlements with Liberty Mutual
Liberty Mutual is classified as the fifth-largest insurer and provides its policyholders with coverage on property and vehicles. This industry giant generates more than $9 billion in premiums collected each year for policies covering homeowners or drivers, as well as those for worker’s compensation or general liability.
Liberty Mutual has historically marketed itself as an insurer who declares that “we stand by you” in protecting policyholders. However, after the company’s acquisition of SAFECO, a former competitor, Liberty Mutual has drastically reduced its response time for damage claims. This deviation from the company’s prior settlement procedures has produced a rash of lawsuits against the insurer.
Once a claim is filed against a Liberty Mutual policyholder, a claim number is generated by the company, and the information is given to one of its insurance adjusters to handle. In some instances, multiple adjusters are used, such as one for handling the insurance side and another for handling property damage.
In the early stages of a claim, it is not unusual for an insurance company to ask the victim to allow its representative to record a verbal statement from the injured party. The Eichholz Law Firm highly suggests that you first get legal advice. Insurance companies are notorious for using recorded statements to their advantage against victims. Misuse of your words can damage your ability to get the full amount of compensation to which you are entitled. Of course, the rules can be different for their own policyholder who may have a cooperation clause in his or her policy requiring a recorded statement be given detailing what occurred to cause the damage, injuries or death.
Liberty Mutual will likely contact all witnesses to get their versions of the incident. In addition, the company’s adjuster might ask an accident victim for a signed medical authorization giving permission for the insurer to obtain all medical records related to the accident. Victims without legal representation can even face an adjuster who wants a signed authorization giving permission for the insurance company to access employment records. Such records might eventually make their way into a lawsuit anyway. However, an attorney can help ensure that a victim’s lawsuit is not damaged by such information through protecting the timing of the information’s release.
Property Damage Claim Filing
In many cases, the property damage portion of a claim is resolved before the personal injury portion to help expedite getting a vehicle repaired or replaced following an auto accident. This scenario could pit an accident victim against a field adjuster from Liberty Mutual who wants to appraise the vehicle’s damage or arrange to have a body shop estimate the cost of repairs. If the vehicle’s damage is minimal, the insurance company may accept the body shop’s estimate without needing to actually see the car’s damage for itself.
The negligent party who caused the accident is accountable for the resultant property damage and should be responsible for providing a rental motor vehicle for the victim’s use during the process of repair or replacement. This provision is likely spelled out in the negligent party’s insurance policy.
If the damaged vehicle is repairable, per the adjuster or body shop, Liberty Mutual may be responsible for the cost of repairs. In some cases, a repaired vehicle will have a diminished value, meaning that its worth is less after repair than the vehicle’s worth before the accident. This type of issue is sufficient reason to enlist the aid of a qualified accident attorney to help ensure the victim is not left with less than before the accident.
Personal Injury Claim Filing
Large insurance companies like Liberty Mutual have a method of determining “reasonable” expenses rather than actual expenses. Even if your hospitalization and medical bills total a certain amount, Liberty Mutual might determine that those medical costs are just too high. Using its own method, the insurer will likely offer a much smaller “lowball” settlement amount to the victim instead. This practice should present eye-opening evidence to an accident victim that it is highly beneficial to have an experienced attorney acting on your behalf to help ensure you get the maximum amount of compensation you deserve, not simply the amount that Liberty Mutual wants to release to you.
Along with recovering the cost of your medical expenses from the accident, you may also claim the wages you’ve lost from your inability to work. An attorney can also help figure out and claim recovery for future lost wages if you are unable to work in the same occupation after the accident because of permanent or temporary disabilities. Additional economic damages may include the loss of money from vacation days and PTO (Paid Time Off) days, plus other accruable benefits lost while recuperating from the auto accident.
Attorneys may also request non-economic damages for which values are not as easily determined. Examples of these losses include emotional distress, pain, suffering and mental anxiety experienced due to the accident and injuries. In typical large-insurance-company style, Liberty Mutual will likely attempt to offer a mere pittance for the pain and suffering you’ve endured, even though it may cost years and months of rehabilitation, surgery, physical therapy, and healing.
Liberty Mutual Policyholder Claim Filing
As a policyholder with Liberty Mutual, your policy may contain various types of insurance coverage to pay for your losses, damages, and injuries incurred in an auto accident. There may be collision, liability, medical or other coverages included. In addition, you may have uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage to cover losses if you should be in a hit-and-run accident or one with a motorist who has insufficient insurance. Regardless of whether you are a Liberty Mutual policyholder or not, it is advisable to seek legal representation from an experienced personal injury attorney as soon as possible after an accident to help guard your rights. You and your family need to receive the largest amount of compensation possible after another driver’s negligence causes damage and injury.
Contact The Eichholz Law Firm Today
If you or a loved one were the victim of an accident caused by someone else’s negligence, then contact our Liberty Mutual car accident lawyers today. Our attorneys have years of combined experience in handling various types of car accident lawsuit cases and will help you deal with car insurance companies.
Call 855-551-1019 or fill out an online form for a free case evaluation.