If you’ve recently been in an accident, there’s a good chance an insurance claims adjuster will want to take your recorded statement. This can be stressful for clients who may not feel fully comfortable submitting to questioning. If it’s your insurance company that requests a statement, you are required, under your policy, to provide a statement. If it is the opposing party’s insurance company, you do not have to give them a statement.
The main takeaway is that you should never reveal provide a statement to a claim’s adjustor, whether the at-fault party’s or your own, without first speaking with a lawyer. If you’ve filed a lawsuit, offering a voluntary statement serves no purpose. Your statement will be given at deposition. In less serious cases where a lawsuit probably won’t be filed, many attorneys will only allow their clients to give a recorded statement with the attorney present. That way, the attorney can keep their client from saying anything that may hurt their claim.
If you are scheduled to provide a recorded statement, here are some tips that you should keep in mind when preparing for and giving a recorded statement to an insurance adjuster:
Beyond your obligation to pay your insurance premiums on time, you also have a duty to cooperate with any reasonable insurance company investigation. As such, when giving a recorded statement, you should try your best to help out the investigators. Not only do you have a legal duty to do so, but this will also help to ensure that your claim is resolved in the most efficient manner possible.
During the course of a recorded statement, the insurance company’s representative may ask questions that you are simply not in a position to answer. Do not try to answer these types of questions. Never speculate and never give your opinions. Your only duty is to share the facts that you know. While you should cooperate when giving a recorded statement, it is also important to remember that the insurance company can use what you say against you should a legal dispute arise.
You should never lie or mislead the insurance company in any way. If you do so, it could lead to your claim, which might otherwise be valid, getting denied outright. Further, depending on the specific facts, there could even be more severe ramifications. Lying to the insurance company may be fraud.
Feel Free to Stop the Questioning
A recorded statement is not meant to be hostile. If you feel hostility coming from the insurance company, or if you feel that you are having trouble understanding any of the questions, you can (and should) stop the questioning. You can tell the insurance company representative that you do not feel comfortable answering any more questions without first consulting with a legal professional. It is your right to do so.
After any type of crash, you should consider talking to a car accident lawyer to learn what your rights and obligations are under the law. Let the personal injury attorneys at Suarez & Montero review the circumstances of your case and discuss your legal options. Our attorneys are ready to provide proven legal representation in pursuing your claim and stand ready to protect your rights.
Contact us today at 786 Lawyers for a free consultation!