If you were injured in a truck accident that was not your fault, you will need to file a claim for compensation for your injuries with the trucker or trucking company’s insurance company. You may be shocked if they deny your claim, especially if you were not at all at blame for the collision.
Unfortunately, insurance companies are in the business of making money, and they frequently deny legitimate claims by injured victims in hopes that they will accept the denial and not pursue their claim further. Do not make this mistake if this happens to you. You need to understand the common reasons why the insurance company may be refusing to pay you so that you can fight back and refute their arguments.
Reason #1: You Were at Fault
A common reason that the insurance adjuster could use to deny your claim is to argue that you were at fault or partially to blame for your accident. Insurance companies love to make this argument in Virginia because our state follows a harsh contributory negligence rule that would bar you from recovering any money if you were even one percent to blame for the wreck.
However, just because the insurance company says that you were negligent does not make it true. You may need to collect additional evidence or hire an accident reconstruction expert to prove the trucker—and not you—caused your collision.
Reason #2: You Delayed Getting Medical Care
If you did not seek immediate medical care after your truck accident, the insurance company could use this fact to deny your claim. They could make one of these arguments:
- Your injury was caused by another incident other than the truck accident.
- Your injuries are not as serious as you claim. If they were, you would have seen a doctor sooner.
While it is always better to be examined by a doctor within 48 hours of your accident, your failure to do so does not mean that you did not suffer serious injuries and is not a legitimate basis to deny you compensation for your injuries. Maybe your symptoms did not develop until the days or weeks after your accident—which is very common in a truck accident.
Reason #3: You Have a Preexisting Medical Condition
If you had a preexisting injury to the same body part injured in your truck accident, the insurance adjuster could argue that your injury was not caused by the crash and deny your claim. However, even if your prior injury was made worse by the accident, they are still fully liable to compensate you under Virginia law.
Reason #4: You Do Not Have an Attorney
Unfortunately, the insurance company may try to take advantage of you and deny your claim for these or other bogus reasons if you do not have an experienced truck accident lawyer representing you. Another strategy they may employ is to offer you a low-ball settlement offer in hopes that you will accept far less than you deserve in your settlement.
What to Do If Your Claim Is Denied
If your claim is denied by the insurance company, you should hire a skilled truck accident lawyer immediately if you have not already done so. They can obtain additional evidence to refute the insurance company’s arguments and fight for the compensation you deserve. Your attorney will also file a lawsuit for you if they refuse to offer you a fair settlement.
Were you or a family member injured in a truck accident in the Norfolk or Virginia Beach area? Call our office to schedule your free consultation today to get your questions answered and learn how we can help you obtain the justice and compensation you are entitled to.