The Insurer Wants You to Sign a Release? What You Need to Know
Posted in: Car Accidents
When you’ve been in a car accident, you don’t need to endure the additional stress of filing an insurance claim for injuries, property damage, and other losses. However, this is exactly the predicament that many claimants face. You may think that you’re in a better position when filing accident claims as an insured policyholder, but adjusters use schemes intended to make the process difficult, even for their customers.
First-party claims are based upon your contract with an insurer, so certain rights and obligations apply to all involved parties. One of the primary duties of an insurance company is to act in good faith, and the failure to do so triggers Ohio’s laws on bad faith. At Kisling, Nestico & Redick, our Ohio insurance claim lawyers are committed to enforcing your rights when filing Esurance auto insurance accident claims.
Founded in 1999, Esurance was a pioneer in the insurance industry due to its business model of selling policies online. The company promoted itself as not only innovative in this respect, but also environmentally conscious because the process could be entirely paperless. Through this approach, Esurance was also able to achieve another groundbreaking edge in the market – providing online quotes from other, competing insurance companies.
At its founding, Esurance offered coverage in four states, but expansion soon allowed it to write policies in 43 states, including Ohio. Even after being purchased by its current parent company, Allstate, the insurer continues to promote itself as a modern alternative to the traditional insurance policy.
Though the specifics will vary depending on your circumstances, your first move when filing a claim is to contact Esurance to get the process started. If you’re the policyholder and will file a first-party claim, be prepared to provide the details related to your policy. As a third-party claimant, you should use the contact information you received from the at-fault driver.
With both types of claims, you will need to provide certain facts and documents, such as:
After your initial conversation, an Esurance claims agent will review the information you’ve provided to determine a settlement offer. Many times, this amount will be far less than what you deserve under Ohio law. Before accepting an offer, it’s essential to consult with a knowledgeable lawyer who can assess fair and reasonable compensation.
If you incurred harm in an accident due to someone else’s negligence, you would file a third-party claim with Esurance, the at-fault driver’s insurance provider. It’s possible to recover compensation for your medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages up to the limit of the other motorist’s policy.
However, there are multiple reasons that motorists may file first-party Esurance auto insurance accident claims. The term “first-party” stems from the fact that you are working with your own insurance company to resolve your claim, and you are in a direct contractual relationship with Esurance. You may consider a first-party claim when you’re seeking compensation after a car crash that was your fault, or if the auto accident involved only your vehicle. It’s only possible to recover for damages that are covered by the terms of your policy, which may include:
An optional add-on to your policy, PIP will pay up to a certain percent of your medical costs lost wages once you meet your deductible. You will not be able to recover for pain and suffering.
You are not required to carry this add-on by law, but most lenders require it if you have a car loan. If you do opt for collision coverage, you can file a claim if your car is damaged in a single or multiple vehicle crash.
If you carry comprehensive coverage, you can file a claim for the costs to repair or replace your vehicle when the damage is not accident-related.
If you’re hurt in a collision with a person who doesn’t have insurance or has insufficient coverage, you can file a first-party claim for medical costs and pain and suffering.
Our insurance bad faith lawyers at Kisling, Nestico & Redick are dedicated to assisting all claimants in auto accident cases, including policyholders and third-parties. We’ll work diligently to get the compensation you deserve, but we’re ready to take the matter to court to protect your interests. To schedule a free, initial case evaluation, contact us today at 1-800-HURT-NOW.