In 2016, automobile accidents cost Illinois drivers an estimated total of $7.7 billion. In 2018, there were 98,859 accidents, 121 fatalities 17,732 injuries in Chicago alone. Auto insurance is supposed to cover the policy holder’s damages caused by an accident. Regardless of whether the insured driver was responsible for the accident, the AAA insurance claims process is notoriously challenging.
If you were injured in an accident and are struggling to get the compensation you deserve under your own AAA policy, or under the liable party’s AAA policy—even though AAA grosses more than $422 million annually—hire an experienced lawyer to help you. Call the Insurance dispute lawyers at Abels & Annes at (312) 924-7575 or write to us online to learn if we can help you.
Abels & Annes: Insurance Claims Results
The lawyers at Abels & Annes have a record of successfully representing personal injury clients who need a strong advocate to protect their rights. We have experience negotiating and settling with insurance adjusters and representatives, including those from big-name insurance companies. When negotiation fails, our lawyers will skillfully litigate claims to try to get the best possible outcomes for our clients. We have settled many litigated cases in excess of $1 million. A recent example of our success includes a case settlement in which we secured a $3 million settlement in litigation for a Chicago motorcycle accident.
While past results are not a guarantee of outcomes for future claims, our record demonstrates our tireless commitment to working for our clients. If we agree to take your case and pursue your claims, you can feel confident that we will fight for you.
What Injuries Does Auto Insurance Cover?
Insurance coverage should provide victims enough money to pay for medical care so they don’t suffer financial devastation in addition to physical injuries. Common motor vehicle accident injuries may include:
- Spinal cord damage
- Traumatic brain injury
- Broken bones
- Sprains and strains
- Death in worst case scenarios
Who May Be Liable for Accident Injuries?
If you were injured in an auto accident caused by another driver who is covered by insurance, that driver’s insurance company may bear responsibility for your medical bills and other damages related to the accident. However, your insurance company may also face some responsibility for your claims, depending on the facts of the case. For example, if the defendant doesn’t have enough insurance to cover the loss, your underinsured motorist coverage may take effect and pay on the claim.
Determining which insurance company is responsible also depends on circumstances of the accident and the establishment of liability. For example, in a case where both drivers are partially liable for the accident, the percentage assignment of fault may determine the settlement for a victim. For example, a driver who is 10 percent responsible for the accident could lose 10 percent of the maximum settlement or verdict.
Insurance Claim Coverage
Following a motor vehicle accident, victims commonly incur many expensive medical bills. This financial burden can compound the difficulty of the physical effects of the accident.
Damages depend on the extent and severity of injuries, medical bills, pain and suffering, lost wages, and future economic and medical consequences for the victim. Typical damages can be economic, non-economic, or both.
Coverage for your medical expenses
Such expenses may include:
- Transportation to the hospital via ambulance
- Immediate medical costs in the emergency room
- Physical therapy
- Ongoing medical costs
- Long-term care
Compensation for pain and suffering
Significant injuries from a motor vehicle accident can cause victims long-term pain and suffering. Some insurance companies have specific formulas to determine worth. These calculations will usually undervalue your case by a significant amount.
When the insurance calculations do not reflect reality, a lawyer will fight for your damage recovery. For example, pain and suffering is notoriously difficult to quantify, but an experienced attorney has the knowledge and skills to most effectively do that on behalf of a client.
If a victim sustains a serious injury, he or she might not return to work immediately. Some victims are permanently disabled, diminishing or destroying their earning capacity. If you were seriously injured by an accident, you may subsequently face long-term economic consequences. The eventual settlement or verdict in your case should include those damages.
Funeral and burial expenses
If a loved one died because of an accident caused by another driver’s negligence, the insurance carrier may bear liability for the funeral and burial expenses of the accident victim.
This may include the cost to repair your vehicle, or the fair market value if your car is a total loss. It may also include any valuable property within or attached to the vehicle at the time of the accident. If another driver was responsible for the accident, that driver’s insurance carrier may bear liability for some or all of the property damage.
How do Insurance Companies try to Avoid Paying Full Claims?
Large insurance companies like AAA can be notoriously difficult to negotiate with. Insurance companies frequently use the same tactics in their efforts to reduce the amount they must pay for an accident claim:
- Denying or shifting liability. Partial responsibility for an accident can reduce the settlement a victim recovers for injuries. In many cases, insurance companies may attempt to prove that the victim was partially or entirely at fault for the accident, reducing their own financial liability. Sometimes, they try to negotiate a percentage of fault even when it is clear you did nothing wrong. For example, you are in an accident with a driver that ran a red light. At the scene of the accident, the other driver apologizes and admits fault to police. It is not uncommon for an insurance adjuster to still try to argue that you are 10-20 percent at fault.
- Lowball settlement offers. Immediately following the accident, a victim may receive a settlement offer from the insurance company. This offer may permanently discharge further financial responsibility to the victim, once and for all. A victim who accepts this offer may lose the right to any future compensation. This is true, even if the injuries and damages are more significant than he or she was aware of at the time of offer acceptance.
A lawyer can stand up for the rights of motor vehicle accident victims. He or she will try to ensure that their client is in a better position to receive the full compensation that they deserve from the insurance company. Avoid accepting a lowball settlement offer by hiring an experienced personal injury lawyer in Chicago to protect you.
Contact a Chicago Insurance Claims Attorney Today
Abels & Annes offers a free consultation to review a potential case and determine your best next steps. Even better, we handle personal injury cases on a contingency fee basis. We charge a percentage fee and only get paid if there is a financial recovery.
If you’re struggling alone to get the compensation you deserve from an insurance company, don’t wait to get legal help. Speak to an experienced lawyer at Abels & Annes as soon as possible. Call us at (312) 924-7575, or contact us online, to schedule a free consultation today.