USAA Car Accident Claim Lawyer | Settlement Help (in 2021)
If you were hit by a driver insured by USAA, call USAA Insurance Car Accident lawyer Niles Sneed today. Niles has experience forcing USAA to provide clients full settlement compensation for their damages. Insurance companies have a legal duty to provide claim benefits for the injuries caused by their driver's negligent actions. We help and make sure they do.
In 2021, USAA has become a difficult insurance company to deal with. If you are trying to maximize the settlement value of your personal injury claim in Texas, Louisiana, or Oklahoma, you need every weapon you can to understand the value of your case. You have to be prepared to fight when handling a car accident claim, USAA adjusters soften up the longer an attorney helps you in the claims process.
On this page, Attorney Niles Sneed has compiled resources to help you learn more about how to properly protect your claim against USAA. You'll also learn about USAA's average car accident settlement amount, and learn important tips of how to handle USAA's claim adjusters.
If you have specific questions you want to ask, or need immediate assistance with an existing USAA Claim, call us at 866-434-0014 for a free consultation or fill out this free case review form today.
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About USAA Insurance
The United Services Automobile Association (USAA) is an extremely profitable company and even brags about their financial net worth on their website. In 2020, the San Antonio based company's profits surged to a record $4 billion dollars and among its 13 million customers maintains a 95% retention. The company's ever-expanding marketing campaigns include of commercials filled with military vehicles and sighs of patriotism which target its direct customer base. USAA are the leading providers insurance to U.S. military, veterans, and the family of service members, and have been since shortly after they were founded in 1922.
As of 2021, USAA is currently the 5th largest auto insurance company in the United States, which accounts for 6.32% of the market share. USAA trails only behind State Farm, Geico, Progressive, USAA, and Allstate. The executives are paid extremely well, which allowed USAA CEO Stuart Parker's to receive a $6.5 million dollar severance payment after leading the company for five years.
So, not be confused, insurance is a for-profit business and even profited during the pandemic. USAA's magnificent growth is largely due it taking in as much as possible in premiums, and paying you, the victim, as little as it can in bodily injury claims. But, this practice is not specific to USAA; it’s simple math. The multi-line insurance company has a 3 of 5 Star Review on Wallethub aggregated from over 2,800 reviews, and a much lower 1.81 from the NAIC.
If you don’t want USAA making profit by underpaying YOUR claim, keep reading, or contact USAA Car Accident Lawyer Niles Sneed today. Sneed|Mitchell LLP is a national firm with offices in Houston, Dallas, Austin, and San Antonio, but helps across Texas, Oklahoma, Louisiana, and beyond. No matter where you are located, our law firm may be able to help. We are open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, at 866-434-0014, or contact us online.
After A Car Accident Has Occurred, What Should I Do?
When you get into a car accident, there are certain steps to help secure the scene, reduce injuries, and make the claims process with USAA easier.
Take things slow. After being involved in a car accident, remain calm and never drive away from the scene of an accident, even when the collision appears minor.
Assess possible injuries. Make sure that you're okay, along with any additional passengers in your vehicle. If you do not feel any physical pain or discomfort, check to ensure the other driver(s) involved is alright.
Always call the police. Even if there are no serious injuries detected at the scene, it is a good idea to call the police. The investigating officer(s) incident report is critical to forcing USAA to accept liability.
Gather critical information. Collect the insurance information of the other driver(s) involved, including their license plate number, phone number, and email address. Do not rely of the police to obtain critical information. Police officers secure car accident scenes differently and might not provide you the information needed to file the accident claim.
Photograph the accident. Capturing pictures of how the cars involved in the crash are positioned at the time of impact is important and prevents other drivers from changing their story later.
Do NOT discuss fault. When speaking with other drivers, witnesses, or emergency personal, it is best to remain polite and only tell the facts of how the accident occurred. Liability is a legal determination based upon existing driver safety laws. Giving an opinion of who was at fault sometimes negatively impacts how the officer formulates the report, so don't do it.
If you are injured, tell the police officer. Seeking immediate medical care and ambulatory assistance to a nearby emergency hospital helps insure that any serious injuries are immediately addressed. Oftentimes, an accident victim is not aware of their injuries until 72 hours have passed and the adrenaline in their body has dissipated. It is important to be seen by a medical professional the moment feel any discomfort.
Protect your rights. The most important thing to do after an accident is to consult an experienced car accident lawyer. Your attorney should collect relevant information, contact the police department for additional details, and file the claim with USAA.
How Do I Report The Car Accident To USAA Insurance?
If you hold a USAA Insurance policyholder, you can use the USAA Mobile App to start the claims process, or visit usaa.com/help to report the claim. Non-policy holders hit by a motorist insured by USAA can report a claim 24 hours a day by calling 800-531-8722.
To file a claim against a USAA policyholder you will need the following information;
The policyholder's last name
USAA policy number
Make of the vehicle involved
Date of the accident
We recommend contacting USAA Car Accident Lawyer Niles Sneed before reporting a claim. USAA claims representatives request an incident description during the claims investigation phase and information you disclose may negatively impact your claim. If USAA completes their liability assessment that determines you were at-fault, your attorney will often have to file a lawsuit to have the decision reversed, which will delay the time it takes for your case to settle.
Can The Insurance Company Force Me To Use Their Body Shop?
No. The insurance company cannot force you to use their repair shop. The decision of where your vehicle is repaired is entirely up to up. USAA, GEICO, State Farm, and many other insurance companies have existing contractors with automotive shops in your vicinity, but these should be used with caution. Insurance entities negotiate lower material and labor rates in these contract, which may even result in parts discounts.
USAA also incentivize their adjusters to sent a large percent of claims to their preferred shops, which is why the company's representative often try to force you to use their facilities. It is best practice to consider the collision shop associated with a car dealership, or to carefully review certified collision shops before making your choice.
Should I Talk To USAA's Claim Adjusters Without A Lawyer?
The truth is, you should never talk to a USAA adjuster without a lawyer being present in the conversation. While you are required to work with an adjuster to process a claim, that doesn't mean you have to deal with them one-on-one. USAA adjusters are trained to scrutinize your claim, innocents, and damages. Some of the questions typical asked by their adjusters includes:
Some of the questions typically asked by USAA adjusters includes:
What actions did you perform to avoid the accident?
What were you doing when the accident occurred?
Where was your first medical visit?
How many prior car accidents have you been involved in?
What is your medical history?
What medical bills have you accrued to date?
Here at Sneed|Mitchell LLP, we normally don't allow adjusters to question our clients. Our attorneys usually provide USAA these answers in the form of sworn affidavits, if we deem it necessary. Obtaining the highest settlement for clients means protecting their opportunity to maximum their claim
The Adjuster Wants A Recorded Statement, Should I Do It?
No, you should not provide the adjuster a recorded statement. Recorded statements are not a legal requirement and anything you say can be used to re-apportion liability. Crafty adjusters often ask leading questions or clarifying statements designed to weaken your claim. For example, "It sounds like you accelerated a bit to try and avoid the collision, is this true?" Other times, USAA adjusters asks an opened ended questions and lets the claimant ramble, allowing them to possibly divulge information harmful to their recovery claim.
USAA adjusters often tell falsities such as, "We are in the process of accepting your claim and need your recorded statement to finalize liability." This is the slyest way of convincing the innocent party into agreeing to a recorded statement. Do not fall for this trick. Contact an experienced attorney before agreeing to provide information regarding the automobile accident
How Much Should I Expect For USAA's First Settlement Offer?
Without legal counsel, USAA's first settlement usually ranges between $500 and $1,200. Do not accept these sums either verbally or in writing. USAA adjusters sometimes contact victims early in the claims process and on a recorded line ask if they want to accept the sum as "satisfaction" of their claim - this effectively closes your claim.
A car accident settlement should include;
Medical treatment costs
Future economic impact
Loss of companionship
Pain and suffering
More than most other large insurance companies, like State Farm, USAA gives more freedom to its adjusters to value the case on both tangible and intangible factors. So, although USAA is using a computer algorithm called Colossus to determine your payout amount, a skilled attorney can argue for additional payment based upon the particularities of your circumstance.
For legal guidance tailored to your specific needs as a car accident victim pursuing a settlement claim against USAA, feel free to call us directly. You can count on us the maximum amount of damages for you and ensure the compensation you receive includes all possible damages available to you under the law.
What Is The Average USAA Car Accident Settlement?
The average USAA car accident settlement for our clients is $30,000, while the average settlement statewide is $15,440. These numbers are referring to the bodily injury claim, not the structural damage to the vehicle. There are a number of contributing factors to determine the average USAA Insurance settlement, including the injuries, lost wages, types of insurance coverage, disfigurations, culpability, and whether any aggregating factors are involved. Aggregating factors include whether the at-fault motorist was drinking and driving, speeding, ticketed, arrested, or driving reckless at the time of impact.
When our personal injury lawyers investigate collisions, we contact the police department, paramedics, and have our private investigators interview additional witnesses to determine if any facts exists to argue the severity or culpability of a at-faults actions. We have handled many USAA claims for both liability and Underinsured Motorist Claims (UM/UIM) and understand their unique contract terms and settlement evaluation metrics.
Can USAA Pay More Than The Policy Limit?
USAA can be forced to pay more than the policy limit (also called the "coverage limit") if an umbrella policy exists, or when the insurance company is fails to timely reply to an attorney's Stower's Demand offering to settle the claim against the insured for an amount within the policy.
Other ways a person can collect additional compensation beyond the at-fault's policy limit include;
Car accidents involving multiple defendants
Suing the defendants personal to collect against their assets before a judge or jury
Vicarious liability cases involving commercial motor vehicles
Products liability cases where a defective product contributed in causing the wreck.
At Sneed|Mitchell LLP, our car accident lawyers know how difficult it is to deal with the aftermath of an accident. However, we also have extensive experience insurance companies and the ways they try to minimize claims. We will make sure your rights are protected. Put your mind at ease. Contact us today for a free consultation.
What Are The Most Common Injuries In Traffic Collisions?
When you’re injured in an auto accident, you need to work with an experienced car accident injury attorney to help fortify and strength your claim for recovery. At Sneed|Mitchell LLP, the most common car accident injuries we assist with include;
Whiplash - When the neck sustains a "whip effect" in a forceful collision, the cervical spine and its supporting muscles sustain trauma that often requires weeks of physical therapy, along within pain medication and exercise. However, some whiplash victims develop chronic neck pain or sustained disfigurement in the form of disk herniations or bulges.
Shoulder or Rotator Cuff Injuries - One of the most common injuries in moderate to sever auto accidents is a rotator cuff tear experienced in the shoulder restrained by the person's seatbelt. Most tears occur in the supraspinatus tendon, but other parts of the rotator cuff may also be involved. Not tendon injuries require surgery, but it is important to have an orthopedic determine whether a person has a partial tear or full-thickness tear.
Crush Injuries - In car accidents that a victim's body to hit the steering wheel or become trapped between two counter forces, a person can sustain a crush injury. The effects of crush injuries are devastating and can result organ dysfunction, renal failure, hypothermia, amputations, paralysis, scarring and disfigurement, or acute lung injury.
Brain Injuries - A brain injuries, or Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI), occurs when a person's head hits a window, the steering wheel, the headrest, or a deployed airbag, and often cause long-lasting impairment. Brain injuries are not easy to identify. For this reason, you need a doctor and attorney experienced at handling this condition.
Broken Bones - The most common bones that sustain fracture in auto accidents includes fibula, ankle, skull, facial bones, and fingers to wrist. The x-rays performed at an emergency facility will detect these skeletal damages, which sometimes only require casting to prevent additional harm to the area.
Additional injuries that often occur personal injury accidents include; spinal cord injuries, and driver's experienced Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) from the near-death experience. The compensation awarded in a settlement or verdict are to provide you for the extent of your injuries and to help restore your life.
What Type Of Medical Care Do I Need After A Car Accident?
After an accident, the vast majority of post-accident medical treatment involves physical therapy or chiropractic care for cervical, thoracic, or lumbar back pain, which helps alleviate soft tissue or whiplash injuries. Many clients However, in moderate to severe accidents involving forceful impact, the care of an orthopedic, neurologist, pediatrist, or pain management doctor is needed to more closely examine injury sites causing immense or chronic discomfort.