Written on Aug 12, 2020 1:59:11 PM
Common Myths about Recorded Statements in Personal Injury Cases
In the personal injury realm, there are many misconceptions. One in particular that stands out is the misunderstandings surrounding recorded statements, or the first-hand explanation you give after an accident with an insurance adjuster. This is the insurance company’s way of gaining both sides of the story from what happened in the accident. Oftentimes, both your own insurance and the opposing party’s insurance company will require a recorded statement (RS).
Or so they tell you.
It’s time to find the facts and dispel some myths surrounding recorded statements in personal injury claims. Here are the steps that lead up to a recorded statements and how you should wisely navigate them.
The Personal Injury Case Process
- The first step, obviously, is that you’ve been in a personal injury accident. This could look like anything from an accident at work, a car accident, or a slip and fall. While this is never an ideal situation, it happens more often than we would like to think.
- You then (depending on your urgency) receive the necessary medical attention and notify your insurance company about the accident with all the information possible in your possession. For example, If this is a car accident, this includes the police report number, license plate of the other driver, etc.
- Before moving forward, contact an attorney. From here, you will be receiving regular medical treatment and dealing with damages on your vehicle. It is during these beginning stages that the insurance companies will be striving to assert liability. The way they can confirm this is with a recorded statement.
Situations Where You Need a Recorded Statement
When should you expect to give a recorded statement?
If you experience some sort of injury and wish to pursue a personal injury case, insurance companies will ask to take a recorded statement as a matter of routine in almost every situation. Although it may seem like the insurance company has enough information - whether records or other documents - they will ask for a recorded statement to determine how to continue with your claim.
This is an important part of the claims process. Refusing to provide a recorded statement will only benefit you if you’re waiting to hire a personal injury attorney. Otherwise, completely refusing to give a recorded statement will only delay your claim.
However, you must be careful with your recorded statement. It is providing you with the opportunity to tell your side of the story and can be a key piece of the investigation into your injury. It’s wise to wait to provide your recorded statement until you receive the experienced counsel of a personal injury attorney.
Common Myths About Recorded Statements
It’s time to clarify some of the surrounding misconceptions about recorded statements!
Myth #1: You must give a recorded statement to the opposing insurance company.
You aren’t obligated to provide the other person’s insurance company anything. With the right coverage, they are the company you will have a claim against to receive compensation for your damages and injuries. While later on, it’s necessary to provide records for proof of an injury linkage to the accident, in the beginning, let your attorney and insurance company communicate with them on your behalf.
Myth #2: You’re not allowed to say “I don’t know” to a question.
A lot of times, insurance adjusters may try to pressure you to remember things you may not be sure of—how far away you were from the intersection, how fast you were going, etc. It’s perfectly okay to say “I don’t know,” or “I don’t remember,” if you can’t recall. If you try to give out inaccurate information, this can risk the verity of your case later on; especially with your recollection against the other driver’s or an uncooperative landlord.
Myth #3: The insurance company has your best interests in mind.
This couldn’t be further from the truth. At the end of the day, insurance companies are all about their bottom line, and their efforts are geared toward a fast resolution that spends as little money as possible. Adjusters may give the illusion that they are there to help, but having an attorney represent you is often the only way to truly keep your best interests at heart.
Myth #4: It’s mandatory to give the insurance company a recorded statement.
Although insurance companies are notorious for pressuring people into making recording statements, they are not mandatory. It’s wise to withhold from making any recorded statement before you consult with your personal injury attorney.
When to Hire a Personal Injury Attorney
Remembering the many facts, paperwork, and details surrounding a personal injury accident can be a giant headache. To top that off, recorded statements add an extra element of pressure that is very difficult to handle alone. It’s wise to wait to give your recorded statement until you receive the counseling of a personal injury attorney. An experienced personal injury attorney can walk you through the process and ensure your statement isn’t twisted or distorted in any way.
At Lowman Law Firm, we have years of experience securing the compensation our clients are entitled to. Don’t face the insurance companies alone! Contact us today for a consultation.