Insurance adjusters are always hungry for information. Still, that does not mean that their desire for facts gives them a right to infringe on a claimant’s privacy.
An adjuster might ask a claimant to prepare a recorded statement, concerning what took place on the day of the accident.
Adjusters have a special motive in mind, when making that request. They want to compare the recorded statement with what the claimant-turned-plaintiff might say in court. Personal injury lawyers in Ottawa are familiar with adjusters’ tactics.
For that reason, no insurance company should be provided with a recorded statement, unless the lawyer of the person giving that statement is also in the room. It is best if the claimant’s personal injury attorney speaks with the adjuster, and shares the information that has come from the client/claimant.
Special approach to be used in no-fault states
There the claimant would have no reason to speak with the other party’s insurance company. Those making a 1st party claim would speak with the adjuster for their own insurance company.
The offer of a signature might prove as detrimental as the making of an unnecessary statement.
Sometimes adjusters ask for a claimant’s signature on a form that would grant the insurance company the right to see all of the claimant’s medical records. For that reason, claimants should not agree to sign a medical release, until a personal injury lawyer has had a chance to study it.
The personal injury attorney has the right to make changes in a form, before the attorney’s client signs it. The attorney’s changes could make it clear that the insurance company had the right to see only the relevant medical records. Those would be the ones from the treating physician.
Claimants do not have to share with any insurance adjuster the facts about any past injury or any pre-existing condition. That is why personal injury lawyers try to keep the insurance company from gaining access to a large body of the client’s medical records.
Still, there are times when the insurance company could learn about a claimant’s past injury or pre-existing condition. If an implanted device controlled a pre-existing condition, the force created by an accident might cause the implanted device to malfunction.
In that instance, the victim’s attorney would seek compensation for the surgical procedure that would be used, in order to get the device functioning normally. In order to seek such compensation, the attorney would have to reveal the existence of the condition that had been controlled by the affected device. That could create a challenge for the personal injury lawyer. Indeed, that same lawyer’s argument could be strengthened through utilization of a medical expert, when fighting the defense team.