If you’ve been involved in a car accident or had to file a claim with an insurance company, chances are you’ve been asked to give a recorded statement to an adjuster. In most cases, no, you should not provide a recorded statement without first getting advice from a Houston personal injury attorney.
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Issues with Providing a Recorded Statement
Being in an accident is a frightening event, and making statements immediately after can sometimes be detrimental to your case. Insurance adjusters work for insurance companies, which are for-profit businesses focused on one thing – their bottom line. To maximize profits, insurance companies actively seek ways to reduce and deny insurance claims.
One highly effective way they do this is by obtaining recorded statements from plaintiffs (injured parties). An adjuster may look for inconsistencies in statements or ask misleading questions. Without realizing it, you may give up important information they can use against you. Because of this concern, you should not provide a recorded statement without speaking to an injury lawyer ahead of time.
Your lawyer may help you prepare a written statement instead so that you can avoid the adjuster’s tactics. A written statement will provide the basic information about the accident from your perspective, and you can ensure that it is accurate.
Am I Legally Required to Give a Recorded Statement?
Generally, you are under no legal obligation to give a recorded statement. You must cooperate with your own insurance company, and providing a statement may be a requirement in your policy, but you do not have to speak to the at-fault party’s insurer.
If the other driver’s insurance company calls you asking for a recorded statement, politely decline and let them know you’d prefer to give them a written statement at a later date. It’s okay to provide them your name, address, and telephone number but nothing more.
If You Decide to Give a Statement
While it is not advisable to provide a recorded statement if you do decide to give one, here are a few tips to protect yourself:
Request that the statement not be recorded.
Avoid volunteering information.
Do not admit fault.
Avoid explaining and if you are asked to explain, be as brief as possible.
If you do not know something or are not sure, say so.
Do not answer any questions if you are not absolutely sure about what is being asked.
Do not sign anything unless you have it reviewed by an attorney.
What If I’ve Already Given a Statement?
If you have already given a recorded statement to the insurance company, there are ways that an experienced accident attorney can handle the situation to your benefit. The longer you wait, however, the more challenging it will be to assist you in obtaining the financial compensation your injuries deserve.
Contact Ramsey Law Group
Our firm is dedicated to protecting the interests of accident victims and is prepared to deal with the insurance company on your behalf. Schedule a free consultation today by messaging us online or calling (713) 489-7577.