From the writer’s comments, it appears that they gave Erie Insurance written authorizations to collect their medical records and billing. Then, after the Erie Insurance adjustor completed her investigation, the person agreed to settle the case for payment of the medical bills, the cost of car repairs and “a few lousy bucks to cover the day and a half I lost from work.” Erie wrote checks to the hospital for the emergency room bill and to the writer for her “few lousy bucks” and the writer signed what I infer was a “General Release .”
Now, the writer finds out that Erie didn’t pay all the bills. When the writer went to Erie Insurance to resolve the matter, Erie said something to the effect of, “Too Bad, So Sad.” Now, the writer resents Erie Insurance for tricking her and wishes she’d hired a lawyer.
I sympathize with the writer. Insurance companies are often not fair, particularly when dealing with people who are not their insureds. Their goal is to settle the case permanently and for as little as possible. A lot of insurance adjustors love the opportunity to work with someone like this writer who didn’t know how to protect himself/herself.
There are so many Erie injury lawyers out there who offer free consults that it just doesn’t make sense for anyone to handle their own claim without at least talking to a lawyer. It certainly doesn’t make sense to expect that an insurance company is going to be fair with you, look out for your interests, collect all your damages, make sure everyone is paid, etc. They’re just not going to do that for you. It’s an ADVERSERIAL PROCESS. If you’re googling, “How to Handle an Injury Case Without a Lawyer” you’d first better get your mind ready to accept that you’ve got to look out for yourself in a process where the insurance company is literally out to minimize and eliminate your rights against their insured.
Even better, read our book “The Ultimate Guide to Car Accident Cases in Pennsylvania: A Roadmap to Justice .” It’s a free book. It’ll help you to understand the process and to choose a lawyer who is right for you and your case. You can’t go wrong.