Insurance adjusters often ask to take recorded statements of injured persons after an accident. Many times they ask to take a statement on the day of the wreck. You would think that providing a statement would be the right thing to do, after all, the insurance company is going to get your car fixed, put you into a rental car, and get the medical help you need. WRONG!
Why Do Insurance Companies Ask for a Recorded Statement
Recorded statements are powerful tools. It is an insurance adjusters first opportunity to build a case against you. They often are used to show that you are not seriously hurt and diminish your claim. They will often ask questions about how you are feeling, if you are okay, in the hopes that you will say you are doing fine. Bingo – any serious injuries and treatment you get afterwards couldn’t have been because of the accident. They will also see if you missed work, yet again to show that you didn’t miss work after the wreck, thus you shouldn’t have missed work after the statement. This is also the insurance companies first chance to get you to provide a inconsistent statement regarding how the wreck occurred, especially in cases where the insurance can blame someone else . As you can see, recorded statements are a powerful tool that can be used against you for your injury claim.
What to Do If Asked for a Statement
I don’t allow my clients to give recorded statements when asked. The only times that I do, is when my own investigation indicates that the other driver is trying to place blame on someone else. At this stage, I want the insurance company to know my client’s version so that they know our side of the story. However, I ensure that each of my clients are properly prepared prior to giving their recorded statements, just like if they were ready to testify in court. Topics that should be covered during preparation include: what were you doing, where were you going, who was in the car, what the other vehicle was doing, and the actual accident itself. Your attorney should also ensure that the recorded statement is limited to how the wreck occurred and not your injuries and treatment. Also, your attorney should be present on the call and your attorney should demand that a copy of the statement is made available.