Originally Posted by VolAgent
They aren't necessarily, but they may be. Also, he didn't get a call from the parents asking his advice if they should file a claim. He got a call from a third party trying to file a claim (at least how I understand it and thus the basis of how I am responding). If that is the case, then he has an obligation to forward the claim to the company. Unless an agent has claims handling authority, it isn't the agent's right or responsibility to determine whether a claim is valid or not.
Finally, it sounds like the OP called the company and they don't want to file the claim, which is completely within their rights. So were I the OP, I'd just note I did so and the next time the adjuster calls tell him I spoke with the company and leave it as that. I definitely would try to get out of the middle of this while doing everything I could to protect my insured.
Let me add why I say let the company know. Most companies require notification as soon as you know of an actual or potential claim (something concrete that may lead to a claim).
It is for a very simple reason, put yourself in the carrier's shoes. You have a relationship with a contractor who interfaces with the public on your behalf. You have given them some authority to act on your behalf, but not complete authority. Wouldn't you want to know as soon as possible that you may be sued, you may have to pay out money? Even if it was completely bogus, wouldn't you still want to know that you may get dragged into a mess?
I would simply call the the claims department at the company in question, let them know what is going on and ask how they want to proceed. Yes, it is passing the buck, but it isn't yours to handle.
I did call the claims department and told them the situation. At that point they said I didn't have to make a claim. They asked who the driver was and what car was driven. After that they didn't understand why a claim would be made since nothing lined up. It sounded like I could but it wouldn't matter. I would love to pass the buck!!!
The adjuster who called me to give the claim company his direct info and to deal with him. I still don't understand why they would care. Why would the adjuster care if the claim went over their limits? BTW
parents and child have same liability limits.