The Purpose of the Letter of Representation
When I send a letter of representation, I include a copy of the police report, and briefly lay out why I believe their insured is at fault for the motorcycle wreck. In the case of a client who was seriously injured in a motorcycle crash, I will describe my client’s injuries, whether they are off work, whether surgery has occurred and was my client hospitalized. Why? Because insurance adjusters deal with hundreds of claims at any given time.
From minute one, I want the insurance carrier to understand that my client’s personal injury claim is significant. I want them to understand that my client was seriously injured and that they better be on their “A” game when handling this claim. I also state that they should let me know in writing, if they are accepting fault and coverage for my client’s injury claim.
Note: If you would like to follow the overall process of understanding Kentucky motorcycle accident claims, you may want to begin by reading the previous page.
What Do I Mean by Coverage?
Insurance coverage essentially means that the insurance policy applies to the incident and that there are no exclusions, under that insurance policy, that would prevent it from applying. For example, if an insured fails to pay his insurance premiums, the insurance companies doesn’t have to defend the claim and pay money under the policy because, the insured did not comply with the terms of the insurance policy, i.e., paying his premiums on time. Another example might be whether the motorcycle rider is the named insured on the motorcycle, insurance policy. If I lend you my vehicle, my insurance can still apply as you have my permission to use my vehicle. This is known as the permissive use doctrine. But if you were using my vehicle regularly over several months, the insurance carrier may be able to deny insurance coverage as they did not bargain for that risk, and I had not informed them of your use of the vehicle.
Consequently, I want to know as soon as I can, whether there will be an issue on recovering my client’s damages from an insurance policy. Why? Because if there is an issue on an insurance policy, I am going to look to my client’s own insurance, uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage, as another source of recovering my client’s damages. So, determining the issue of insurance coverage at the beginning of the personal injury claim, tells use which way to concentrate our efforts to maximize a client’s recovery on their personal injury claim.
Protecting My Client
In addition, I tell the insurance carrier that they are only allowed to communicate, call or correspond only with me and not with my client. Why? To protect my client as I represent my client and I am under a legal duty to always act in his/her best interest. In contrast, the insurance carrier wants to settle the personal injury claim for as little as they can, as quickly as they can and get him/her to sign things that hurt the value of his/her claim.
Now, proceed my page on the topic of Reserving No-Fault Benefits to continue with my example and how it relates to Kentucky motorcycle accident claims.
Click here to listen to Attorney Jim Desmond discuss uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage in Episode 4 of his podcast.