Adjuster Techniques – Hardship, Jury Appeal, Terminal Illness, Internal Policy
You should be able to trust a dedicated New Jersey accident law firm to respond to any arguments or techniques employed by adjusters to lower the settlement amount.
A claims representative will look into aspects such as whether the claimant has been recently unemployed or is earning a low income. Adjusters realize that a claimant may be likely to settle for a smaller settlement amount if he or she is short on money.
The claimant’s elite social status may prove to be beneficial to a claims representative. Juries are typically turned off by rich, powerful individuals (bankers, CEO’s) and will refuse to award them substantial settlements.
The claims representative may ascertain whether the claimant is suffering from an illness that cannot be cured. If so, then the claims representatives will determine if he or she can live through the protracted litigation and win damages. Generally speaking, the general damages for pain and suffering expire when the claimant dies, and cannot be claimed by an heir or survivor.
The claims representative may deceive the claimant by stating that the insurance company’s internal policy dictates that certain damages will not be taken into account. If that is true, then such a policy flagrantly violates good faith claims practices. Listed below are examples of the damages that should be covered even if the claims representative says they are not.
Lost wages: These are wages the claimant lost when he or she missed time from work to find out the cost of a vehicle’s damages, take the vehicle to a body shop to get it fixed, and come back for the vehicle once it has been repaired. These are considered proximate cause damages and should be factored in by an insurance company acting without ulterior motives.
Transportation costs: If transportation expenses to and from the claimant’s doctor’s hospital and additional travel costs are clearly tied to the subject claim, then they also fall under the category of proximate cause damages.
Long distance phone expenses: Also falling under the category of proximate cause damages are long distance phone calls directed to the claims office out of state or local jurisdiction.
- Court costs for children with attorneys: Any court costs incurred from achieving a minor’s compromise for the sake of the insurer should be thought of as proximate cause damages; thus, it would be a cost of doing business to be assumed by the insurance industry, instead of by children represented by attorneys. If a minor has not retained an attorney, the insurance company is required to pay the court and attorney’s fees to obtain a minor’s compromise through superior court. But they may avoid trying to pay if the children are represented by attorneys.