Auto-Owners Insurance Group provides insurance to more than 3 million policyholders. The company was established in 1916, and currently is represented by 48,000 independent agents in 26 different states, including many agents in Central Illinois.
As with most any insurance company, the claims process at times can be frustrating for those pursuing a claim against an at-fault driver, and for policyholders pursuing an uninsured or underinsured claim. While you may have a great relationship with your insurance agent, the agent’s ability to intervene in the claims process is usually limited. And while Auto-Owners does have many great insurance adjusters, as with any insurance company, some of their adjusters can be difficult to work with, particularly for individuals with no experience with the claims process who are not represented by an experienced injury attorney.
Fortunately, help is available with Auto-Owners car accident claims in Bloomington from seasoned legal professionals who have dealt with this company before. With guidance from an experienced lawyer who knows how to effectively negotiate on behalf of those injured in car crashes, you could have much better chances of getting the compensation you need in an efficient and timely fashion.
What to Do During the Auto-Owners Claims Process
If you are an Auto-Owners policyholder pursuing a property damage claim or an uninsured or uninsured motorist claim, it is most likely that your first call would be to your own insurance agent. Auto-Owners works through a nationwide network of agents, and their website directs policy holders to open a claim through their agent.
The agent may help you get a claim opened and then the claim would be assigned to an adjuster. Even if you have a great relationship with your insurance agent, we recommend you consider consulting with an attorney prior to opening your claim and let the attorney open the claim on your behalf.
When an Auto-Owners insurance adjuster is assigned the file, they may ask to take a recorded statement, or they may ask you to sign a very broad medical records release. We recommend against giving a recorded statement, as these are statements can elicit testimony that can be used to reduce or destroy the value of your claim. A recorded statement isn’t required, and our lawyer can explain the basis of your claim to the adjuster on your behalf.
We also recommend against signing the Auto-Owners medical records release. These forms often give insurers permission to look at a claimant’s entire medical history rather than just records for accident-related care, and they may use that history to claim that certain injuries were preexisting conditions that are not covered under their policy. Instead, your lawyer can gather your medical bills and records on your behalf, review them for completeness and accuracy, and submit them to the adjuster for review. This can prevent a claim from being undervalued due to a lack of complete bills and records and can avoid confusion and disputes if there is an error in your records, as the error can be corrected before it is provided to Auto-Owners.
Working with Legal Counsel to Pursue a Fair Settlement
Working with a helpful and compassionate Bloomington personal injury lawyer can help you successfully recover a fair settlement from Auto-Owners. Your lawyer can help you evaluate your claim and give you a sense of what kind of value your specific case may have. Most injured people have one or two car accident claims in their life, often at a time when they are missing work, in pain, and somewhat overwhelmed. They are not well positioned to negotiate with an experienced claims adjuster who is working to resolve the case as cost-effectively as possible.
If you receive an early offer to settle your case, this offer will almost never be sufficient to cover all of your damages. It is very important to wait until you finish treating to consider settling your case, so you can determine the full value of your claim. It is crucial to discuss settlement offers with a qualified legal professional before agreeing to anything.
A lawyer can also help you determine how much coverage is available for your damages. Drivers in Illinois may carry as little as $25,000 in coverage, or they may carry much higher limits. Auto-Owners policies tend to be higher than minimum coverage, and it is possible that an at-fault driver insured by Auto-Owners may have $100,000, $250,000, or even more coverage available. Often insurance adjusters will attempt to conceal the total amount of insurance limits available, but a Bloomington car accident attorney can work to obtain written confirmation of applicable insurance coverage limits, which can be a crucial factor in evaluating how to proceed with your claim.
Seek Help with an Auto-Owners Car Accident Claim from a Bloomington Attorney
If you have a claim with Auto-Owners insurance, our team of compassionate legal professionals could work to help you maximize the value of your claim, minimize the medical bills and liens to be paid out of your claim, and we could make the process much easier for you.
Handling Auto-Owners car accident claims in Bloomington is not something you should try to do alone, especially if your accident resulted in serious injuries. Call today to see how our team could help you.