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How to Negotiate a Settlement With an Insurance Claims Adjuster

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Encountering a disaster or an accident is always a tragic experience that leads to financial loss. That is why people take insurance to lower the resulting expenses. But when buying insurance, most people do not think much about how to negotiate a settlement with an insurance claims adjuster. Do you know how to negotiate? We’re here to break down everything you should know.

How to Negotiate a Settlement With an Insurance Claims Adjuster

An insurance claim adjuster is a person hired by an insurance company to investigate the magnitude of the damage after an accident. Depending on what they find out, insurance adjusters determine the extent of an insurance company’s liability. Here are a few tips and tricks.

Evaluate Your Policy

Before you start any negotiations with the insurance adjuster, first review your policy and get your facts right. It is not wise to approach the insurance table with half-truths. Plus, you will also avoid committing insurance fraud unintentionally if you understand your policy.

For instance, when looking at a home insurance policy, you will realize there are a few differences between motorhome insurance and homeowners insurance policy. It is important to read your policy several times and take note of every wording. Ensure you have a solid understanding of the compensation you are entitled to. This ensures you will not lose out on a higher settlement.

a close up of a pen on a clipboard for home insurance claims and policy

Gather All Your Records

Your records are like evidence. They show why you deserve the amount you are asking for from the insurance money. Before you start negotiating, get all these records documenting the incident ready. Some of the documents you might need for your case include:

  • Medical records
  • Property damage quotes
  • Accident reports or police reports
  • Photographs of the damage
  • Witness statements

As a general rule, any document that can be used to validate the loss you just encountered needs to be kept safe. Plus, the more evidence you have, how to negotiate a settlement with an insurance claims adjuster will be easier.

Have a Settlement Amount in Mind

When writing an insurance demand letter, you will have to state what your insurance claim is worth. This can be a tricky part for some, and this is where people make mistakes. Some people quote too low because they do not know what their claim is worth. That is why it is always advisable to take a bit of time before writing the letter in demand. Despite the amount you put on the demand letter, always have a bottom line in mind. That is the least amount of money you will accept from an insurance adjuster. You do not have to reveal this information, but it also prepares you for what you might receive. Also, keep in mind that the adjuster might point out a few facts that you were yet to consider, which could lower your settlement. When you know how to negotiate a settlement with an insurance claims adjuster, you can prepare for such scenarios.

Know Your Rights

A big part of negotiating with an insurance adjuster is knowing your rights. This will give you some confidence even as you negotiate. Plus, you will have earned the respect of the insurance adjuster. If you feel that the adjuster’s settlement is not fair, counter the offer with confidence. If you are unsure about your negotiating skills, hire a loss assessor. This is a specialist that understands the terms of an insurance policy and will work to get you a reasonable settlement.

You can also talk to an attorney to help negotiate for you. This is particularly important if you are not in the right headspace to negotiate. For instance, if the loss you encountered led to severe injuries, significant property damage, or the loss of a loved one, let another experienced person negotiate for you.

Be Civil And Consistent In Your Communication

Most people approach insurance adjusters with their arms up, ready to fight. This often leads to hostility from the starting point. Just because insurance adjusters represent insurance companies does not mean they are your enemies. Insurance adjusters are more responsive when one is polite, easy, and honest. Here are some tips to remember in terms of communication.

  • Communicate with the adjuster frequently: Talk to the adjuster as much as is needed. And every time you are done talking, schedule for the next time you will talk again.
  • Be courteous: Insurance adjusters are simply doing their job. They have no personal vendetta against you. Treat them with respect, and you will get the same in return.
  • Negotiate realistically: if you are requesting unrealistic results, you will only get the same treatment from the adjuster. That is why it is important to research and have information at hand. Even when you are making demands, it will be within a realistic range.

Record Conversations Or Take Down Notes

Negotiations often involve a lot of back and forth. And if you do not take notes, you might forget important details, or things can get confusing for you at the negotiation table. It can also ensure you avoid disputes. However, be ethical and inform the insurance claim adjuster that you are recording the conversation and taking down notes. And when the final settlement finally comes, you can compare it with the recorded conversation and notes, ensuring that it matches what was promised.

Avoid Falling For The First Offer

Part of negotiating is not taking the first offer given by the insurance adjusters. Keep in mind that insurance adjusters are pros at negotiating because of doing this so many times before. The first offer they will give you will probably be low. This is all part of the claims process, and it can be quite frustrating. Keep your cool. This is simply a tactic used by insurance adjusters to test whether you know how much your claim is worth. Do not just reject their first offer and keep quiet. Send them a counteroffer in your follow-up letter. You can also request more information about their valuation and then explain why you are rejecting the offer. Note that there will be no negotiations if you accept the first offer. It is only after you find the first offer unsatisfactory that negotiations begin.

two people negotiating to come to terms on insurance or agreement

When Is It Necessary To Negotiate With An Insurance Adjuster?

If an insurance adjuster offers you a lower settlement than what you deserve, you should negotiate. You ought to be well compensated according to the damage you have suffered. For instance, say you have been in a car accident. Depending on your coverage, you might be entitled to compensation for medical injuries and property damage. Know what you are entitled to before you start the claim process. That way, when you start negotiating, you know the amount you are going after.

When You Should Not Negotiate With An Insurance Adjuster

Not all insurance claims end up on the negotiating table. For instance, if an insurance company gives you the amount you are asking for in the demand letter, there is no point in negotiating. However, be sure that the amount you are asking for compensates you fully for the loss suffered.

You should also know when to stop negotiating. If the negotiations are not going well, step away and file a lawsuit. This is where you know what your policy is worth, but the insurance adjuster is giving you way below what you deserve. As long as you have supporting evidence and are working based on facts, then there is no need to keep negotiating. It is also important to hire an attorney to help you move forward with the case in such cases. If your issue is being handled in court, the insurance company will have legal representation. Get yourself an attorney too to level the playing field.

Benefits Of Negotiating For A Settlement

Here are some of the reasons why you should always negotiate with an insurance adjuster.

Avoid a Premature Settlement

Most people rush to settle too early, which is often a mistake. Take your time first to understand the extent of the damage caused. If it is an injury, first understand how it can impact your life before agreeing to the first settlement you are given. Plus, if you agree to a settlement early, you forego any right. You have to claim more money if you develop other complications because of an accident.

Get a Fair Settlement

Another reason you should know how to negotiate a settlement with an insurance claims adjuster is to ensure you get a fair settlement. Most people are often not sure what their loss is worth. And if you do not negotiate, you will only end up with a low amount. Negotiating allows you to get a fair settlement. The process takes time, but it is worth it.

Mistakes To Avoid When Negotiating

Here is a list of mistakes you need to avoid during the negotiating process.

  • Signing agreements you do not understand
  • Revealing family issues
  • Producing a recorded statement
  • Guessing the value of your claim
  • Accepting the first offer
  • Losing your temper
  • Refusing to compromise

an insurance agent or worker looking over the insurance policy or contract

Know How To Negotiate With An Insurance Claims Adjuster For A Better Settlement

Most people do not know how to negotiate a settlement with an insurance claims adjuster. This has seen most people leaving a significant amount on the table. At ONIT Home, we want to ensure families are linked with the best insurance possible. To get started, visit us online or give us a call right now at 1-833-433-0331. 


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