Q: Injured in a car accident on Highway 401 near Kingston, Ontario. The insurance company of the driver who hit me left a message and asked me to call him back. Do I have to?
A: No, you do not have to call him back. It is best to talk to an experienced car accident lawyer in Kingston who knows Ontario car accident law before talking to the other driver’s insurance adjuster, including an adjuster from your own car insurance company.
Related Ontario Car Accident Legal Article: Injured in a Car Accident in Ontario? What Injured Drivers Should Know About Talking to a Car Insurance Adjuster
Talking to the Other Driver’s Insurance Adjuster
When the at fault driver’s car insurance company calls to talk to an injured party, the adjuster is probably seeking information from the injured party to use against him/her in a subsequent claim or lawsuit. Insurance adjusters are infamous for trying to get out of paying injured parties the financial compensation they deserve after car accidents. The other driver’s insurance company is protecting its own interest and not the injured party’s interests. If possible, it wants to reduce its insured driver’s liability for causing the car accident and pay out as little as possible.
In your conversation, you may say something that the insurance company will use against you later on in terms of fault. For example, the insurance adjuster asks how fast you were going, and you say you don’t know. The insurance adjuster presses you to guess. If you guess a speed that was over the speed limit, the insurance company may try to deny fault and say you caused or contributed to the accident by driving too fast.
The adjuster may also want to know about your injuries. When you speak to the adjuster, you may not know the full extent of your injuries because you haven’t had a full medical work up yet, such as an MRI imaging study. When asked how you are feeling, you say, “okay.” Later, you find out that you have a torn disc in your neck. In a subsequent car accident lawsuit against the at fault driver, what you said to the adjuster may come up, and the validity of your injuries may be questioned.
If you don’t call the adjuster back, he may continue to call you. In the event that you answer the phone when the adjuster calls again, you should ask the adjuster to call your lawyer.
Talking to Your Own Car Insurance Adjuster
Though you do not have to talk to the other driver’s car insurance company, you do have to speak to your own insurance company. Under Ontario car accident law, you may file for accident benefits from your car insurance company after a car accident, such as income replacement benefits and medical and rehabilitation benefits. See Ontario Car Accident Law – Lost Pay or Wage Loss Benefits
Even though it is your own car insurance policy, it is still best to speak to a lawyer before talking to the insurance adjuster so you know what to expect and what your legal rights are. Feel free to call our office to schedule a FREE consultation. 1-866-384-5886.