Going through a car accident is a difficult experience, and there is no handbook on what to do once you have been involved in one. So what happens when an insurance adjuster is asking for your statement after an accident? And you are hurt? And you don’t know what to do? Should you give it to them? Is it mandatory? We will help you understand what a recorded statement is and when you have to give one – and when you don’t!
What Is a Recorded Statement?
A recorded statement is an interview usually done over the phone with an insurance adjuster that is being recorded through an audio device. The adjuster will often ask about how the accident happened, your injuries, and your future plans regarding the claims process.
However, a painful experience like an accident is disorienting and confusing. Insurance adjusters are trained to ask questions that may seem to be innocuous to the untrained eye, but are designed to trap you into a statement about the accident, your injuries, etc. that may later be used to undermine your claim. Even more, insurance adjusters can take these statements without giving you an opportunity to hire a lawyer and have your lawyer present. Sometimes, they will take these statements while you are actively seeking still processing your experience, actively seeking medical treatment, or even while you are hospitalized. So as you can see, you may already be in a compromised position before the first question is asked!
Recorded Statements Are Optional
It doesn’t matter if the insurance adjuster says otherwise — if the other driver’s insurance company asks for a statement, you NEVER have to do it! Recorded statements from third party insurers are optional in Florida and Georgia. There is no law that requires an injured party to give a statement about the accident to the at-fault driver’s insurance company. So don’t let the insurance adjuster strong-arm you into giving a statement. Contact Scott & Wallace instead!
The Statement Can Be Used to Your Detriment
As we previously established, a car accident is confusing and traumatic. And because of that, your statement can incriminate you even if you did nothing wrong. For example, the insurance company can use your vague statements to blame you for something you didn’t do or can make you question your account of an accident because you can’t remember some insignificant fact. Alternatively, the adjuster may use a statement made shortly after an accident like “My pain isn’t that bad” to later claim that you are fabricating your injuries if your symptoms worsen over time so that they can pay you less. It can be quite ugly, but it’s just a fact that the insurance company will use these statements to try and undermine your claim.
Conclusion: Call the Professionals
In the end, if an insurance company asks you for a recorded statement, it’s better to call a lawyer first. The insurance company will always look out for their own profit while a lawyer will protect your rights.
Here at Scott and Wallace, we put your well-being and rights above all else. Count on our Accident & Injury Law Division to deal with the insurance company. Still unsure what to do? Contact us and get a free consultation right on the spot. Act now and protect your rights.