Nationwide Arbitration Process
If you were in an auto accident and have Nationwide auto insurance, it is important to understand what the arbitration process is like. This is an option you can choose if the settlement negotiations stall or you have trouble getting a settlement through the standard Nationwide Claims Process. Instead of going to court right away, a neutral arbitrator can weigh the evidence on both sides of the case and decide.
Below is more information about the arbitration process with Nationwide.
Overview of Nationwide Arbitration Process
The process begins by you informing Nationwide in writing that you intend to go to arbitration to resolve your personal injury claim. One of the points of contention about arbitration is choosing who will arbitrate the case. Organizations such as AAA can offer you a list of professional, neutral arbitrators who are required to be fair and neutral under the law. Agreeing on the arbitrator will often involve a bit of negotiation between you and Nationwide.
Arbitrator Is Agreed Upon
After the arbitrator is agreed upon with Nationwide, that is when things get serious. A date is set for the hearing. This is really a deadline for you and Nationwide to submit the documents that support your arguments.
The documents that Nationwide uses will provide you with a clue about what the auto insurance company’s arguments are.
At this point, approximately 2/3 of all cases scheduled to go to arbitration are either settled or withdrawn. The reason is that once both sides see the argument the other is making, this can encourage one or both parties to agree to a settlement for the auto accident. The arbitration process has this moment built into it for both sides to see what the other is arguing so that hopefully, an agreement can be reached. You could decide that pushing for a few hundred dollars more is not worth the hassle. Or, Nationwide might decide it’s a better idea to increase their offer.
When the arbitrator issues an awards statement, it will be brief. It will not discuss the reasons the ruling were made. It will just state what you and Nationwide get and who is paying which fees.
Seek Legal Assistance
The arbitration process is different from a trial, but it is still a complex legal transaction. To increase your chances of winning in arbitration with Nationwide, it is recommended to hire an experienced arbitration attorney who can best represent your interests. You can use our website to help you find a qualified arbitration attorney in your area.
In order to determine whether your vehicle needs repairs or an estimate, Nationwide allows policyholders to bring their vehicles to garages of their choice or to a Nationwide On Your Side Auto Repair Network facility. The inspection shouldn’t take long, and your claims adjuster will be in touch soon to update you on their findings. Should the estimated repairs outweigh the value of the vehicle, Nationwide will declare the car totaled.
Should this occur, Nationwide will work to determine the value of your vehicle and reimburse you with the amount, minus your deductible. If the other driver involved in the accident is found to be at fault and their insurance company assumes liability, they will reimburse you for your deductible. Nationwide can assist you with finding another car, too.
Settle Your Claim
Whether your car is able to be repaired or is declared totaled by Nationwide, the payment issued to you is negotiable. While the sum may not be presented to you in a way that is framed as open to discussion, you have the right to negotiate a fair settlement in the wake of an accident. In many cases, Nationwide policyholders opt to hire a car accident attorney to handle negotiations for them. Whether you tackle these conversations yourself or outsource them to a more experienced legal mind, it’s important not to settle for anything less than what you feel you deserve for your damages.