Apr 032014

No, you do not.  Because it is the other driver’s car insurance company, you have no obligation to call the adjuster back.  Drivers/passengers often exchange insurance information after a NJ car accident in Cherry Hill or Camden.  You probably gave your number to the other driver after he rear ended you, and vice versa.  It is common for the at fault driver’s car insurance company to call an injured passenger or driver soon after the accident.  The insurance adjuster often wants to get information about the injuries, accident, etc.; however, the adjuster is looking for information that he/she can use against the injured party to reduce the amount of money the injured party can recover in a subsequent NJ car accident lawsuit.  Therefore, it is advisable for injured drivers/passengers NOT to speak to the other driver’s insurance company.  They may say something that could be used against them later.  See Should NJ Car Accident Victims Give a Statement to the Other Driver’s Car Insurance Company?

For example, you may not feel the full extent of your injuries and/or have not been fully evaluated by a doctor and say to the adjuster that you feel okay.  However, you later find out that you have a torn disc in your back, which is a significant injury.  Because you said you felt okay soon after the accident, the other driver’s insurance company may argue that the torn disc is unrelated to the accident because you did not mention it during the conversation.  Of course, this argument can be rebutted, i.e., you didn’t know you had it because you didn’t see an orthopedic doctor or did not have an MRI taken yet, but it is an issue that could have been avoided.  It is important to talk to a NJ car accident lawyer, and have the lawyer talk to the adjuster.

Cooperating with Your Own Car Insurance Company After an Auto Accident

On a related issue, though you have no obligation to talk to the other driver’s car insurance company, you are required to contact your car insurance company to report the accident in order to receive medical benefits, also known as PIP benefits.  See Injured in a NJ Car Accident? – The Basics of Medical Benefit (PIP) Claims.

No-Fault in NJ Auto Accident Cases

Many injured drivers think that the car insurance companies of drivers who caused the accidents will pay for their medical expenses related to the accident; however, this is incorrect.  Regardless of who is at fault or caused the accident, injured drivers or passengers will make medical benefits claims with their car insurance companies.  This may seem odd to many injured NJ drivers/passengers, but this is NJ’s “no-fault” insurance scheme.

Therefore, your car insurance company will pay for your medical expenses related to the car accident, up to the limit you purchased.  The standard PIP coverage for drivers/passengers in NJ is $15,000 per person or accident. However, many NJ residents elect higher PIP coverage amounts, such as $250,000.

If you would like to discuss your accident, feel free to call me at 800.281.8695 to schedule a free consultation.