Last Updated on October 6, 2023
Dealing with insurance adjusters after a car accident in Portland can be a stressful and sometimes complex process. While your health and recovery should be the primary focus after a car accident, navigating the complex world of auto insurance is also required for you to get access to all that insurance should provide.
Here are some steps to help you navigate the situation effectively.
Ensure Safety: First and foremost, ensure that everyone involved in the accident is safe. If there are injuries, call 911 immediately. Safety should be your top priority.
Exchange Information: Exchange contact and insurance information with the other parties involved in the accident. This includes names, phone numbers, addresses, insurance company names, and policy numbers.
Document the Scene: Take photos and videos of the accident scene, including damage to all vehicles involved, license plates, road conditions, and any relevant traffic signs or signals. This can be crucial evidence later.
Contact Your Insurance Company: Notify your insurance company about the accident as soon as possible. Be honest and provide them with all the necessary information. They will guide you through the claims process.
Don’t Admit Fault: Do not admit fault or discuss who is to blame with anyone at the scene, including the other drivers, passengers, or witnesses. Leave the determination of fault to the insurance companies and authorities.
Get Medical Attention: If you have any injuries, seek medical attention promptly. Keep records of all medical treatment and expenses related to the accident. Open a medical claim so that your treatment is covered by insurance.
Report the Accident to the DMV: If the accident resulted in injuries, death, or property damage exceeding $1,500, you must file an Oregon Traffic Accident and Insurance Report with the DMV within 72 hours.
Contact a Personal Injury Attorney: If you sustained injuries or significant property damage, consider consulting a personal injury attorney who specializes in car accidents. They can help protect your rights and negotiate with insurance companies on your behalf.
Be Cautious with Insurance Adjusters: When speaking with insurance adjusters, remember that their job is to minimize the amount the insurance company pays out. Be careful about what you say and avoid making recorded statements until you fully understand your rights and the extent of your injuries and damages.
Keep Records: Maintain detailed records of all interactions with insurance adjusters, including the date, time, and content of conversations. Also, keep copies of all correspondence, such as emails or letters.
Review Your Policy: Familiarize yourself with your insurance policy to understand your coverage, deductibles, and limits. This knowledge can be helpful when discussing your claim.
Seek Multiple Repair Estimates: If your vehicle was damaged, obtain multiple repair estimates from reputable auto repair shops to ensure you receive fair compensation for the repairs.
Stay Patient: Dealing with insurance claims can be a time-consuming process. Be patient, and don’t rush into accepting a settlement offer if it doesn’t adequately cover your expenses and damages.
Consider Mediation or Arbitration: If you and the insurance company can’t agree on a settlement, you may consider mediation or arbitration as alternative dispute resolution methods.
Know Your Rights: Familiarize yourself with Oregon’s insurance laws and regulations to ensure you understand your rights and responsibilities in the claims process.