How To File A Car Accident Claim With State Farm In Oregon
Posted on May 18, 2020 in Car Accident
State Farm is a well-known car insurance company in the United States, and they provide insurance for vehicles as well as other products to consumers in Oregon. When you think of State Farm, you probably think of their commercials featuring a State Farm agent transporting into a humorous situation to help policyholders. However, it is important to know the reality of how to file a car accident claim with State Farm in Oregon. Being involved in an accident is no laughing matter.
Reporting the accident
You need to report the incident State Farm as quickly as possible, preferably the same day the accident occurs. However, please understand that the initial report is nothing more than informing State Farm that the accident occurred. You do not have to go into detail at this point.
Document as much as possible
Gather as much evidence as you can when at the car accident scene as well as soon after the accident occurs. Use your Smartphone or other type of camera to take photographs of all damages to your vehicle as well as other vehicles involved. At the car accident scene, you should also take pictures of any debris lying around the scene as well as traffic and weather conditions. Take photos of any injuries you have incurred. By documenting as much information as possible, you will be able to prove the severity of the damages and injuries.
Determine a minimum settlement amount
It will be difficult to negotiate a settlement amount if you do not know how much your claim is worth. You need to know:
- How much your total medical expenses are
- How much it will cost to repair or replace your vehicle
- How much lost income you incur if you cannot work
- How much out-of-pocket expenses you incur
All of these expenses need to be tallied up so they can become part of your settlement. You can fully expect that the insurance carrier will do their own tally and offer a settlement that is far below what you should receive.
Be ready for the claims adjuster
The State Farm will have a claims adjuster investigate your case. The goal of the insurance adjuster is to evaluate the entirety of the crash and make an estimate on behalf of the insurance carrier. The claims adjuster will be a trained negotiator, and their job is to offer as little as possible in a settlement. You need to know that the claims adjuster is not your friend. No matter how nice they seem, their goal is to throw you off balance and get you to admit that you are not seriously harmed as you claim.
Keep your story straight
State Farm may try to get you to change your story about the accident. They may call you multiple times and ask the same questions worded in slightly different ways. If they manage to get you to tell different versions of how the accident happened or if you give them varying information about the severity of your injuries, they will use this to justify giving you a lower settlement amount. From the beginning, stick to the same story about how the incident occurred and how seriously you were harmed.
Speak to an attorney
It is important to recognize that insurance carriers, at the end of the day, are not your friend. These are “for-profit” companies that will do what they can to lower the amount they pay you in a settlement. You need to keep this in mind when filing a claim. A skilled Portland car accident attorney will be able to help you get through this process. An attorney will have experience dealing with claims adjusters from State Farm and know how to maximize your settlement.