Can Insurance Companies Follow Me After an Accident Injury?
Many personal injury victims are worried about being spied on by their insurer after they file an insurance claim. This worry may be more than just your imagination because insurance companies routinely perform surveillance on claimants as part of their investigation.
This may sound like an illegitimate activity, but certain forms of surveillance are legal. Insurers can spy on you under specific conditions as long as they don’t violate your privacy or harass you. If you or someone you love was injured in an accident, you should speak with an experienced injury attorney in Atlanta to ensure your rights are protected.
Why do Insurance Companies Spy on Accident Victims in Atlanta?
The insurance company investigator may be spying on you for a simple reason – to look for evidence of fraud or any inconsistencies that helps them avoid paying the claim. You need to understand that insurance companies are always looking out for their bottom line. Their primary goal is to minimize the compensation amount. If you find insurance agents following you, it is so that they can find evidence to use against you.
This doesn’t mean that insurance companies spy on all claimants. For instance, if you suffered a minor accident and the facts leading up to the event are straightforward, the insurance company may not find it in their interests to expend resources on the claim. But if you suffered a debilitating or severe injury, the insurance company may perform some type of surveillance.
The largest component of personal injury compensation usually is pain and suffering, among other economic and noneconomic losses. The insurance company will try to find evidence that you are not suffering as much as you claim and that your quality of life has not been substantially diminished.
Claimants Have Rights
There are a lot of things that insurance companies cannot do. Generally, insurers hire private investigators that can gather information only in the realm of public space. You can be legally followed to the doctor’s office, but the investigator cannot snoop through your medical records without your consent.
They can also follow you when you are out running errands, going for a walk, or going out to dinner. These are all public spaces and are open to all people. You should note that it’s very common for insurance investigators to perform video surveillance on unsuspecting claimants participating in these daily activities.
Your online activities can also be perused by the investigators. In fact, insurance companies routinely deny compensation based on evidence collected from Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn, and other similar online platforms.
For instance, the pictures you post of you with your family or friends vacationing on Paradise Island can be used against you for arguing that the injury has not caused as much emotional turmoil as you want people to believe.
It is important to note that the investigators cannot violate your privacy. They cannot enter private property without permission. And, they are not allowed to hack your electronic devices or perform other similar illegal activities.
Private investigators also need to make sure that claimants are not followed too closely. There is a fine line between stalking and legal surveillance. An experienced personal injury attorney will help you identify if the surveillance has been performed legally or not.
Dealing with Insurance Company Surveillance
While you should not get overly concerned about the insurance company watching you after filing an injury claim, you should make sure that you don’t try to understate your injury. Many injury victims try to put on a brave face and do physically taxing chores, for example. Such instances may be seized on by the insurers and blown out of proportion unfairly to deny compensation.
These are a few ways of protecting your claim:
- Follow doctor’s orders: You should refrain from performing any physical activities that the doctors ask you not to participate in. You should also wait for medical clearance before going back to work.
- Be mindful: You should be careful about how a particular activity may get interpreted by the insurance company before you go out in public. For instance, if your doctor has advised you not to lift grocery bags, you should not. The insurance investigator may state that your injuries are less severe than you want them to believe.
- Don’t post online: Photos and comments that you post online on social media can be used for undermining your claim. You should stay away from social media until your claim gets resolved.
- Retain legal representation: There are several ways that an insurance company can diminish the value of your claim. You need to make sure your rights are fully protected. You should work with a knowledgeable personal injury attorney.
Discuss a Winning Legal Strategy with our Atlanta Personal Injury Attorneys
If you or someone you love has been injured in an accident, the experienced personal injury attorneys at the law firm of DuBose Miller can fight for your rights. Our attorneys have helped several victims and their families get the maximum financial compensation they deserve. To set up your free and confidential consultation, call 404-720-8111 or reach us online.