Typically, an insurance adjuster for the at-fault driver will contact you several days after you are involved in a car accident. They will probably ask you to consent to a recorded statement. If you consent, they will proceed to ask detailed questions about the circumstances surrounding the wreck, your injuries, the medical care you have received and the nature of your claim. While they may seem harmless at the time, these questions have been developed by large insurance companies and are designed to minimize their exposure and, consequently, reduce your recovery. They are not designed to help you and often cause considerable damage to your claim. If you give an incorrect response or omit some important detail, they will use the statement against you in an effort to minimize your claim.
Consult an attorney first. You are not required to give a statement to the at-fault driver's insurance company, and at Burnside Law Firm, we usually recommend our clients not to provide such recorded statements until they have consulted with us and we are with them when the recorded statement is given. Another consideration is this: if you are going to voluntarily give a recorded statement, isn't it only fair that we, your lawyers, be allowed to take the other driver's statement too? Sometimes, we will agree to a recorded statement but only if the insurance company reciprocates by making their insured available so we can question him/her also. The insurance companies usually decline this offer—a testimony to just how harmful these statements can be.
Don't be confused, however, about who is asking for the information. You absolutely do have a duty to cooperate with your own insurance carrier. After an automobile accident, you should immediately contact your agent or your insurance company and report the accident. Your insurance company has a right to investigate the accident, which investigation may include obtaining a recorded statement from you concerning the circumstances surrounding the accident. Your insurance policy, which is a contract between you and your insurance company, obligates you to cooperate with them in a reasonable manner.
If you have been injured in an automobile accident in Augusta, Evans, Martinez, Athens or some other city in Georgia, contact one of the experienced attorneys at Burnside Law Firm LLP for a free initial consultation before agreeing to give a recorded statement.
DISCLAIMER: Every automobile wreck presents a unique set of facts and circumstances. These suggestions, on the other hand, are very general in nature and may or may not be appropriate in your particular case. Therefore, these suggestions are not intended as legal advice for your case and should not be relied upon as such. For legal advice and a free initial consultation about your automobile wreck case, please contact one of the attorneys at Burnside Law Firm LLP.
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