Not every car accident claim is simple or straightforward. In many situations, our clients find themselves at a standstill with the insurance company because the adjusters do not want to approve your losses. This is where an arbitrator may be considered.
What is arbitration for a car accident claim? At Gatti, Keltner, Bievenu & Montesi PLC, we can help you with this legal process. Do not go into a meeting that will determine whether you receive compensation for your losses without the help of our highly qualified Memphis car accident attorney by your side.
How Is Arbitration Defined?
Arbitration is a process in which you, as the victim of a car accident and the insurance company responsible for the losses, meet with a third-party arbitrator. That person is not involved in the case and, therefore, is an unbiased individual. What is critical to understand is that this person will ultimately decide what happens in your case, determining if you should receive compensation.
It is not uncommon for your insurance claim to end up in arbitration. In some situations, this is done by choice. At other times, your insurance policy may have stipulations built into it that require arbitration to occur.
There are several things to know about this process:
- The third party is considered a neutral person.
- The arbitrator hears information from both sides of the claim.
- The arbitrator considers all input and then makes a decision.
- The arbitrator’s findings are considered legally binding.
- Typically, you cannot appeal these decisions.
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What Are the Benefits of the Arbitration Process?
There are some benefits to this process. For example, it is typically faster and less formal than going to court through a lawsuit. When you and the insurance company cannot agree on the outcome of a claim, this can be a solution to getting to that place without having to go to a trial.
If you are in a car accident, and you file a claim with your own insurance company for your losses, and that insurer denies your claim, you may end up in arbitration. If you are in a car accident with another party and file a claim against their insurance policy, that insurance company may enter arbitration with you. Have an experienced arbitration attorney by your side from John Foy & Associates.
Arbitration, when done correctly, can be a major benefit when dealing with injuries from a car accident. You do not have to worry about going to trial, which can prolong the amount of time it takes to recover compensation. Talk to a car accident attorney today about your case.
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Who Picks the Arbitrator?
One of the biggest concerns you may have in this process is who is going to pick the person who decides the case. It is not always easy to evaluate just how fair someone is going to be. However, disputes like these are taken very seriously and handled through an arbitration association.
Numerous such associations include the Judicial Arbitrators and Mediation Services and the American Arbitration Association. Most often, you will receive a list of available arbitrators for your case (and the insurance company will also receive such a list). Then, you can decide on one or more people you are willing to work with from that list.
Ultimately, a person must be accepted by both sides to provide this service. It is also possible to obtain a third-party arbitrator who is not working directly with one of these associations or one who works independently. In all situations, you will need to accept the person, and the insurance company will as well.
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What Are the Key Rules and Stipulations in Arbitration in a Car Accident
As you work towards arbitration, you are sure to wonder how this is going to work. How can you be sure your case will receive the attention it deserves and the compensation owed to you? There are typically a few rules put in place throughout this process, such as:
Rules of Evidence
One key difference in arbitration is that the typical rules of evidence do not apply to this process. You can submit records, such as your medical bills or even medical records, to the arbitrator without having to actually call any witnesses to verify or prove the documents to be binding. Be sure to collect other evidence to benefit your claim.
There Is No Automatic Right to Discovery
One key limitation is the limited right to discovery. Unlike in a court of law where you must provide all evidence to the other party, that does not happen here.
You and the insurance company will agree on any information changes that both parties agree to share. However, not all evidence is presented in the same way.
You Do Not Have to Have an Attorney
You are not required to have an attorney by your side. However, having one you trust can guide you through the process and help to minimize the risks you face. Arbitration may seem more relaxed than going to court, but there is so much on the line that you will want to ensure you are doing all you can to present your case in the best way possible.
There Are Costs
Typically, there are costs associated with arbitration in a car accident case. However, these costs tend to be much lower than what could be expected in a courtroom.
You and the other party will need to work out an agreement for who will pay for each of the costs. This includes items like filing and hearing fees, arbitrator expenses, and other fees, as well as costs related to the discovery process.
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Should You Use Arbitration?
Arbitration is not always available during an insurance dispute. However, if the insurance policy makes arbitration a requirement, then it is likely you will need to use this process to come to an agreement in your case. Keep in mind that every situation is very different, and it may be best for you to use this method since it is less formal after a Memphis car accident.
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You Do Not Need to Go Through This Process Alone
When it comes to understanding arbitration for a car accident claim, spend some time talking to our car accident attorneys about your case. We know what is at risk at Gatti, Keltner, Bienvenu & Montesi, PLC.
We will work closely with you to ensure your rights are protected throughout this process, so be sure to call us now for a free consultation.