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Question reference to At-fault Coverage
(Williamston, NC (US))
I live in North Carolina and my girlfriends daughters were involved in an accident where the other person was totally at fault (completely took blame for the accident).
When I asked the claims adjuster about the persons coverage, he said the only thing he could tell me was that the person has better than the minimum coverage and that he couldnt tell me no more than that.
Is that true, or does he have to tell me the exact coverage in dollar amounts? Keep in mind that both daughters were injured and one has a broken foot and has already had surgery.
Also, when the first adjuster learned of the surgery, he turned it over to another adjuster, both of them have come to the house to speak to the daughters and the mother.
He had with him medical release forms that he wanted signed and they indeed asked for medical information before the accident, which I didnt like. The forms were not signed and he said he would come again in about a week.
Why was this turned over to another injury adjuster, when one was already assigned? Thanks for your answers to these questions!
Hello Wayne, I am sorry to hear about your daughters. We hope they feel better soon. You have different questions so we are going to address one by one.
1. It is true. They don't have to give you their insurance information. Some states require the insurance company to first have a release authorization form of this information by their client. Usually, insurance companies will not even ask for their clients to release the policy limits information unless there is a likely chance that the injury will actually go over those limits (there would not be enough money to pay you). This apply even in fatality cases.
Also, you could force the information out, but that requires and attorney and usually go over the "discovery process" in a case, then the insurance company must give that information up.
2. Insurance companies change adjusters when they learn new information. Usually they get it to the best and most experienced adjuster depending in difficulty. The first adjuster was probably an "injury adjuster" the second is probably some kind of senior or specialist. Basically a more experienced adjuster (and a better negotiator). The trigger was the surgery for sure. That would make your claim weight more.
3. The insurance adjuster must seek a medical authorization form. This form gives them access to the medical bills so the insurance company can look at the records and see how injured your daughter really is. It is a good thing you read the forms. As you describe they give pretty much 100% access to their medical records (since they were a baby!). They would be able to look at everything. Someone people have no problem with that, some other do not want to get frame for prior medical problems, or simply for privacy reasons.
At some point or another you are going to have to surrender records. It is the only way to prove their injury (pain and suffering) etc. However, you can limit the language of the form. You can type one yourself or you can cross out things. Things like you will only access medical bills regarding the "foot surgery" that was related to "the accident on date such and such." That type of thing. You get the point.
You could also not allowed them to see the records (note, if you want them to pay for the bill, they have a legal right to the record). You could collect the records yourself (pay for them) then look over them, and then submit to them whatever documents your case and you consider relevant. At that point you can ask for money back for the records that you surrendered.
I hope this helps. As always this is not legal advice and you should consider talking to an attorney before making any decision in your claim.
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