Recorded Statements and Insurance Companies
When you are involved in a car crash, you oftentimes have to deal with two automobile insurance companies: your insurance company and the driver at fault’s insurance company.
There are several differences in regard to whether to give a sworn statement or an interview, regarding the crash.
No matter what, always remember that insurance companies and insurance adjusters are not you
r friends. Their first interest is their company’s bottom line. Before you tell them anything, you should consult a personal injury attorney about what to say and how to say it, as there will be at least two insurance companies involved.
The main difference between providing a recorded statement for your car insurance company and the driver at fault’s car insurance company is that you are essentially obligated to give a statement to your company. Most insurance policies have a “duty to cooperate” clause in their policies. This means that if an insurance company wants a statement from their insured, they must provide it or the insurance company can deny coverage. In other words, if the insured does not cooperate with his own company, they do not have to insure their insured. Many people get a lawyer involved at this juncture because they simply don’t trust insurance companies because they know the interest of the insurance company is not their self-interest.
Oftentimes, the insurance company for the driver at fault wants to take your sworn statement, even when the liability issue is clear. In other words, if you get rear-ended, there is really no defense to the car that hit you and yet many times the insurance companies of the at-fault driver demand a statement. There is absolutely no state law that says you must give a statement, much less a recorded statement, to the other person’s insurance company. Oftentimes, they act like you must do so, but it is simply not true.
I generally tell the insurance companies that we will not give a statement unless there is some unusual circumstance which could be the basis to deny a claim right from the get go, where a statement would clear it up. Of course, I have had over 30 years of experience and know when there is truly an unusual circumstance such that I would allow a statement to be made.
Normally, if we do a statement, my clients come to my office and the insurance adjuster takes the statement by telephone and is not present in my office. Most of the time I do not allow the statement to be recorded.
If you have been injured in a car accident, don’t sign or say anything. Contact a personal injury lawyer to discuss your case. Attorney Charles V. Contrada will explain your legal options and guide you through the process.
To speak to attorney Charles V. Contrada about a car accident in Ohio or Michigan, call (419) 841-4400. Charles has helped thousands of individuals with car accident claims and will explain the legal options that are available to you. Call Contrada & Associates for comprehensive legal guidance that will help you to receive the most favorable outcome.