After a Kansas City Slip & Fall, Should You Talk to the Adjuster?
If you've been injured in a slip and fall accident in Kansas City, or anywhere in Missouri or Kansas, you may receive a phone call from the insurance company of the property owner. Many times the insurance adjuster will ask to take your statement and to record it. There are several pitfalls to recorded statements. You may inadvertently say something that is incomplete or inaccurate. The insurance company may use that against you later to pay you less than you deserve.
Immediately after the accident, you are probably already dealing with a lot of stress and issues. This is why we advise our clients not to give recorded statements and to let our Kansas City slip and fall lawyer speak with the insurance adjuster on their behalf. We can gather the information they need to move your claim forward while you focus on treating with your medical providers and getting better.
Should I Sign an Authorization or Release After a Kansas City Slip & Fall?
The insurance company for the at-fault party may also send you a series of documents that will likely be titled "Release" or "Authorization". They will ask you to sign these documents. Before you even think about signing any document the insurance company sends you, it's critical that you understand the legal implications of what you are signing.
There are different kinds of documents the insurance company may send you. Two common kinds are summarized below. However, we suggest that you should speak to an experienced slip and fall accident attorney before signing these forms.
Our Kansas City slip and fall attorney provides free consultations and would be happy to review any forms that the insurance company sends you free of charge.
1. Medical Records Release or Authorization
The first type of document that the insurance company may send you after an accident is called a medical release or authorization. This document is used by the insurance company to get all your medical records and bills from your providers. This allows the insurance company to review your personal medical history both before and after the accident.
In general, these medical authorizations are very broad and unlimited in time and scope. Should you sign this form? The answer is only if you want the insurance company to have access to all your personal medical history, regardless of whether the treatment is related to the injuries in the accident.
Instead, we suggest you allow your attorney to request your medical records first. After your attorney reviews them and makes sure they're accurate, then any relevant medical records can be provided to the insurance company along with whatever other information is necessary for them to evaluate your claim. This is where an experienced slip and fall injury attorney can be helpful.
2. Release of Liability / Claim
The second type of form that the insurance company will often ask you to sign is a release of liability or release of claim. You should not sign this form unless you are ready and willing to release your claim and any and all right to recover damages from the accident forever.
This form is typically signed at the very end of the case in conjunction with the settlement payment by the insurance company. Once you sign the release, your personal injury claim is gone, and you have no right to recover further compensation for future medical needs or other damages. For example, if you find out that your injury is worse than you thought or that your need for medical care is more expensive than anticipated, you will be out of luck and have no recourse under the law.
Contact Our Kansas City Slip and Fall Attorney for Free
Still have questions about what to do after a slip and fall injury that occurred in Kansas City or anywhere in Kansas or Missouri? Contact our legal team today at 816-203-0143 for a free, no obligation consultation, or simply fill out the form below. Our experienced Kansas City personal injury attorney would be happy to review any documents the insurance company provides you or asks you to sign free of charge. We can provide you with information to increase the value of your claim and stop you from being pressured into signing away your legal rights. Don't wait, call today.