How Does an Insurance Company Evaluate My Car Accident Claim?

If you or a loved one has suffered a personal injury, it is important to know how the insurance company is going to evaluate your claim. Long gone are the days of a skilled insurance adjuster pouring through your records. Nowadays, most insurance companies use a software program, called Colossus, to evaluate your claim. Colossus takes the pressure off the insurance adjuster to evaluate your claim and allows the adjuster to input certain data into its system to arrive at what it thinks is an appropriate settlement number for your claim.

To use Colossus, the insurance adjuster must gather certain data to put into the system. First, the insurance adjuster obtains your medical records and medical bills from your treatment providers. The adjuster then inputs the information obtained from your medical records and bills, such as medical diagnoses, along with any property damage (i.e., damage to vehicles), into the Colossus system. The adjuster and the Colossus system look for key words in your medical records to input into the system. Certain key words have more “value” than other words in your medical records. Higher values are given to more serious injuries, such as broken bones or injuries requiring surgery. Lower values are given to minor injuries, such as strains and whiplash. Once the adjuster inputs all of the required information, the system then gives the adjuster a settlement range, recommending to the adjuster what amount they should settle the case for. Insurance companies differ as to what they do with the settlement range recommended by Colossus. Some companies exclusively stay within the settlement range, while other companies do a separate evaluation to arrive at a more concrete settlement number. Each insurance company evaluates claims differently. Some insurance companies rely fully on software programs like Colossus, while others don’t use Colossus at all.

According to Colossus retailers, Colossus consistently evaluates claims and minimizes insurance payout variance. Retailers tout the ability of Colossus to take the decision off of the claim adjuster and streamline the claim process to ensure bigger profit margins for insurance companies. Insurance companies love Colossus because it saves them money in the long run. Insurance companies no longer have to spend the time to evaluate each and every claim, but instead can just input data into the Colossus system to arrive at a settlement figure.

Insurance companies love the Colossus system. However, the Colossus system has several drawbacks from the plaintiff/injured party’s perspective. First, there is no way to determine what exact information the adjuster puts into the system. Colossus is only able to evaluate your claim based on the information the adjuster puts into its system. If the adjuster leaves out certain information or certain key words, your claim will not be valued as highly as if the adjuster had put in that information. Additionally, Colossus does not take into account details like pain and suffering in evaluating your claim. Colossus just looks at the hard numbers, based off of your medical bills and medical records. Colossus does not care how the accident affected your everyday life. It does not care if you missed out on major life events or if you were unable to perform certain activities as a result of your injuries.

A knowledgeable attorney can help you deal with insurance companies that use software programs, such as Colossus, in evaluating personal injury claims. If you or a loved one has been injured, contact the personal injury attorneys at the law firm of John J. Malm & Associates to learn more about how you may be entitled to receive compensation for your injuries.