By Veronica M. Hawkins, AIS, AINS
The attorneys and Personal Injury Case Analysts at Goldberg Noone Abraham, spend every day dealing with insurance companies in our efforts to reach a satisfactory resolution of your accident injury claim. We often post about insurance terms you should know, and about what you should expect from your insurance company after you've been hurt in a crash.
But what about all those pesky acronyms and short-hand references adjusters commonly use and, what do they mean? I was a claims adjuster for a national insurance company for nearly a decade, and I can tell you that the list of these confusing terms is almost endless. But for this article, let's cover the most widely-used examples:
My top 10 common or important references are:
- BIPD: This refers to your insurance limits as Bodily Injury/Property Damage. When you look at your policy coverages, you will often see your limits written as $XX/XX/XX; the first 2 sets of dollar amounts are the limits you carry for injuries you cause when you are liable for the crash, whereas the last set is the limit you carry for damage to property you cause when you are liable for the crash.
- UM/UIMBI: Different but the same, and often used interchangeably, it stands for Uninsured Motorist/Under-Insured Motorist Bodily Injury This is coverage that is optional for you to carry on your policy, in case you are injured in a crash because of someone else's negligence and they are found to be either Uninsured or Under-Insured Motorists. Uninsured refers to an at-fault party who has $0 insurance limits for the injuries they caused you; Under-Insured refers to an at-fault party who has insurance, but the limits are too low to cover your injuries in full. Once it has been established that there will be a claim under this coverage, it doesn't really matter whether you refer to it as UM or UIM.
- UMPD: In some states, unfortunately not in Florida, you have the option of carrying Uninsured Motorist/Under-Insured Motorist Property Damage. Similar to UMBI, this coverage pertains to your property; if your property is damaged due to another's negligence, and they do not have any or enough insurance to pay for the damages they cause, UMPD steps in for you under your policy of insurance.
- DOL: Probably one of the more common ones is DOL or Date of Loss. Likewise, it is very important as this is the first step in determining whether or not coverage applies to your claim.
- Insd: Stands for Insured, who may or may not be policyholder or any other person considered a first-party in the claim.
- Clmt: Stands for Claimant, who is the 3rd-party alleging damages against your policy, and on whom the burden of proof lies to prove why your policy should pay for their damages and/or injuries.
- FOL: Another common and important acronym is FOL, or Facts of Loss. An insurance company's investigation of an accident is determined by the facts that are provided by the parties in the accident. Oftentimes, you are requested to provide your FOL during a recorded statement. This is when we highly recommend you speak to one of our personal injury attorneys at Goldberg Noone Abraham to make sure you don't say something you shouldn't – when you retain our law firm, we'll take care of all the annoying and confusing insurance questions, and counsel you before you provide a recorded statement.
- R/S: Simply put, this stands for Recorded Statement, which is your statement of the facts of how the accident happened, to the insurance company. Because this is recorded, it is important to be detailed and accurate, as it will become your version of the events of the accident.
- SIU: Sometimes, during an investigation the insurance company may come across certain red flags that may indicate some level of fraud is occurring related to the claim. When this happens, the insurance company will deploy their SIU or Special Investigations Unit to do undercover, in-depth investigation of the subject of their concern.
PR: This refers to Police Report; not to be confused with Personal Representative of an Estate of a deceased party.
After a crash, you'll be swamped with paperwork, phone calls and emails about what happened, and the alphabet soup used by the large insurance companies just make it all the more confusing.
My background in the insurance business means I know the ins and outs of the language used, and how to communicate with the claims adjusters involved in your claim. And our Co-Managing Partner, Mike Noone, spent years as a senior claims analyst prior to obtaining his law degree. This provides an invaluable asset to our clients when dealing with the insurance giants.
It never costs a thing to consult with us after a crash to get the answers you need. Call us at 239-461-5508, or just fill out this simple form to begin getting your life back in order and making sense of the blizzard of paperwork you'll be under.