How Long Does an Insurance Company Have to Investigate a Claim in Tennessee?

How Long Does an Insurance Company Have to Investigate a Claim in Tennessee?Immediately after an accident, you will likely notice your bills begin to accumulate quickly. This may be because you have several medical bills due to your injuries, you are missing work because you are physically unable to do your job, and your vehicle may be in the shop getting much needed repairs.

As a result, you may become stressed, frustrated, and overwhelmed, wondering how long it will take for the insurance company to investigate your claim and start providing compensation to cover your losses. This is a natural curiosity, as another person is responsible for your car accident and injuries, meaning that their insurance company should be giving you money to help you pay for your damages.

Deadlines for insurance companies investigating and handling claims in Nashville, TN

In Tennessee, there are certain deadlines that insurance companies must follow when it comes to investigating and handling accident claims. The first deadline, according to Tenn. Comp. R. & Regs. 0780-01-05-.07, gives every insurance company 30 days to acknowledge that they have received a claim. This means that they must let the individual who filed the claim know that they received their claim, as well as provide specific instructions, information, and paperwork to the policyholder about the next steps.

Another deadline laid out in Tenn. Comp. R. & Regs. 0780-01-05-.08 states that insurance companies have 60 days to find proof of any losses, documentation, information, or any other evidence about the accident. During this 60-day period, the insurers also must let the individual who filed the claim know whether the claim is denied or accepted. This means that once the insurance company receives the completed forms showing proof of loss, they must provide a decision to the claimant within 60 days. If the insurance company needs more time, it must let the claimant know and explain why more time is necessary.

Once the insurance company finishes their investigation, they must let the person who filed the claim know what they found in their investigation within 30 days. If liability is determined and the claim is accepted, the insurance company has 30 days to make the payment.

What steps does the insurance process consist of after an accident?

There are several different steps involved in the insurance process after an accident. The goal of these steps is to evaluate your claim, determine who is responsible, and decide how much compensation you are entitled to. The insurance process consists of six steps:

  1. Filing your claim: The first step is one of the easiest steps. You will simply get in touch with the insurance company and file your claim. For example, if you were involved in a motor vehicle accident, you would most likely call your own insurer to inform them about the accident. Then, either your insurance company or you would need to reach out to the other driver’s insurance company to file a claim. You also have the option to hire a Nashville car accident lawyer who will handle all forms of communication with the other party’s insurance company, which is extremely beneficial while you focus on recovering from your injuries. In addition, if you have an attorney by your side, you will never have to worry about saying the wrong thing to an insurance agent, putting your entire case in jeopardy.
  2. Assigning your claim: Next, the insurance company will give your claim to an adjuster. This means that the specific adjuster will oversee handling your claim from beginning to end. Adjusters can be very difficult to work with as they typically have a lot of experience, a legal team backing them, and communication and interview skills that may be used to trick you into saying anything that could benefit them.
  3. Investigating and collecting evidence: The adjuster who is assigned to your claim will begin investigating and collecting their own evidence about your accident. This means that they may visit the scene of your accident, speak with the other party involved about what happened, look at police reports, review your medical documents, and interview witnesses about what they saw. You must be aware of the fact that adjusters will likely check out your social media accounts, previous medical records, and other claims that you may have filed in the past. While they are investigating and collecting evidence, they may also ask for you to show proof of your injuries, lost income, mechanic fees, and more.
  4. Looking over all evidence and working with their own legal team: The next step that your claim will go through involves the adjuster looking more closely at every piece of information they have collected. Their goal is to find a way to reduce the amount that they must pay you. Therefore, they will likely work with their own legal team and determine if there is any way that they can reject your accident claim or decrease the compensation you are owed for your losses.
  5. Giving a value amount for your claim: Once the adjuster realizes that they cannot reject your claim, they will need to provide a value amount for your claim. This is the dollar amount that your claim is worth. There are various ways that the adjuster will develop a value amount, which may include adding up your medical expenses, lost wages, property damage, pain and suffering, disability, and more. After they have added up everything and developed a value amount for your claim, they will look over the policy holder’s insurance policy to see what type of limits it consists of. If the value amount exceeds the policy holder’s limit, they will need to reduce the value amount of your claim.
  6. Making settlement offers: Lastly, the adjuster will start the settlement process by making offers to you or your attorney. Most of the time, the initial offer is always very low because they hope that you will take the lowest amount possible. If you or your attorney reject the offer, negotiations will start, which means settlement offers will be going back and forth until a fair offer is agreed upon.

By hiring a Nashville personal injury lawyer from Rocky McElhaney Law Firm to assist you with filing your claim, you can rest assured knowing that your case is in good hands. Our team will guide you through the entire claims process, ensuring that we secure the best outcome possible for your claim. Call our office or submit our contact form to schedule your free case review at one of our locations in Nashville, Murfreesboro, Hendersonville, and Clarksville today.