Insurance companies do not always have an injured person’s best interests in mind. Insurance adjusters represent the insurance company, not the injured employee. They are employed to help the insurance company make money. That is why they may use several tactics in an attempt to devalue your claim when you are hurt on the job. They often receive training on how to minimize the payouts on claims, even if this means that you receive fewer benefits.
The experienced Cincinnati workers’ compensation attorneys at O’Connor, Acciani & Levy may be able to help you level the playing field against insurance adjusters. Below, we discuss common tactics insurance adjusters may use and how you can respond to try to protect your claim. Call our team today for a free, no obligation consultation.
Refusing To Approve Physician Referral
Your authorized treating physician is primarily responsible for your treatment after sustaining a workplace injury or illness. However, in some circumstances, your treating physician may determine that you need to be seen by a specialist or another physician. The workers’ compensation insurance adjuster may deny the physician referral, causing your treatment to be delayed. This tactic may put your health in jeopardy as you wait to receive the care you need.
Waiting To Approve Your Claim
A common tactic insurance adjusters use is to delay paying on your claim. They hope that by delaying giving you compensation you will simply return to work because you cannot afford the lost wages and mounting medical bills. It is important to consult with your attorney if you believe that your claim is wrongfully being delayed.
Offering A Light-duty Job
One effective way to minimize the benefits that a workers’ compensation claimant receives is to offer him or her a small amount of work. If your doctor has cleared you for this type of work and you refuse it, the insurance company may try to deny your claim for further benefits. If you accept the offer, it may only be temporary and this may not be discussed with you. You may still be eligible to receive benefits, but the insurance adjuster may not inform you of this.
In other situations, an employer may try to minimize the benefits paid to you by offering a light-duty job that is not actually light duty. Once you are tricked into this position, you may see your benefits disappear while your employer tries to get you to work a job that is too physically demanding while you are recovering.
Asking For A Recorded Statement
A common tactic that many insurance adjusters use is to try to get a recorded statement from the accident victim. This tactic is never used for the benefit of the victim. Instead, insurance adjusters try to get a recorded statement to use the information against the victim later during the workers’ compensation process.
For example, the worker may be recovering and may not clearly remember the details of the accident. He or she may underestimate the nature and extent of the injuries he or she suffered. If the worker leaves out important details, the insurance adjuster may claim that the statement is inconsistent. It is usually best to refuse to give a recorded statement until you have spoken to an attorney about it.
Wanting To Settle Too Quickly
Another common tactic that insurance adjusters use to devalue a claim is to try to settle the claim quickly. This tactic is often employed to try to get the worker to accept a lowball settlement amount before he or she hires a lawyer who can advise him or her of the real value of the claim. It is important to consult with a lawyer before agreeing to any settlement or signing anything.
Contact An Experienced Lawyer
The tactics listed above are just a few of the sneaky methods that workers’ compensation insurance adjusters may use to try to deny or devalue your workers’ compensation claim. If you have been injured on the job in Cincinnati, let our dedicated team at O’Connor, Acciani & Levy review your situation. We may be able to help you pursue benefits for your injuries.