It’s a cliché in crime movies: the Good Cop that acts like a best friend vs. the Bad Cop, who is mean and puts pressure on suspects. The thing is, taken together, these two extremes add up to a Smart Cop Team, because they use psychology to get cases wrapped up.
Insurance companies use the same strategies to take care of claims. What you MUST know is that the insurance company is looking to save money.
Beware the Good Cop Insurance Adjuster
Accident victims are vulnerable. It’s just that simple. They are dealing with their injuries, trying to figure out what their rights are, and desperately worried about looming bills. (If you’ve been in an accident, you should also check out our Accidents and Car Crash FAQs.)
Believe me, the insurance company knows about an accident victim’s state of mind. Many insurance companies have developed training programs to teach representatives how to convince people to sign off on their rights, thereby signing off on any and all claims they could have from the accident for all time!
The strategy is codenamed ESO or “Early Settlement Opportunity.”
Top Three skeptical statements
A Good Cop insurance adjuster may say a lot of things to develop a rapport with an accident victim. They may stress the heartfelt concern of the insurance company and the urgency they feel to settle your claim. They may even share a personal story of an accident experience! But you should really watch out for the following three assertions:
1. The Good Cop may say you don’t need your own attorney and that an attorney will only take one-third of what you recover.
The truth: Yes, the usual attorney’s fee is one third, but a national study revealed that accident victims represented by attorneys received settlements about 300% larger that people who did not have representation. That means double the settlement amount, even after an attorney’s fees are paid.
2. The Good Cop says you must have suffered a “serious injury” in order to bring a claim.
The truth: Yes, it is true – but do not take their word that you have not suffered a “serious injury”! For one thing, only medical professionals are qualified to assess your health, and secondly, it may take some time for the full extent of your injuries to be known.
3. The Good Cop says the insurance company won’t offer you a cent more if you hire an attorney.
The truth: That’s just totally false. At the Ziff Law Firm, we’ve had settlements time and time again that were many times larger than the original offer.
Want to know more?
I’ve written a book about accident cases and your rights, “Learn the Five Deadly Mistakes that Can Kill Your Accident Case.” It’s free to New York and Pennsylvania car accident victims, because I know the strategies the insurance companies use – and so should you.
Thanks for reading, Jim
James B. Reed, Esq.
Personal Injury & Malpractice Attorney
Ziff Law Firm, LLP
303 William St., Elmira, NY 14902
Tel. (607) 733-8866 Fax. (607) 732-6062
Toll Free 1-800-943-3529