The aftermath of a car accident is often chaotic. Many people will simply not be thinking straight for a while, thanks to the extra adrenaline pumping through your system right after, and the new challenges that may soon follow: medical treatment, time off work, financial pressures, etc.
In all that commotion, it’s essential to be extremely careful when making recorded statements. Here’s why.
What’s a Recorded Statement?
Some car accident victims can get the surprise call from an unknown number, which is usually a representative of the at-fault driver’s insurance company. These agents will contact car accident victims to ask them a few questions about the incident that took place, appearing even very sympathetic to your situation.
However, they may not tell you this call is recorded, and even if they do, you should simply refuse to make such statements. A recorded statement will be used in your insurance claim as your version of events, so everything you say can be used throughout the entire process.
Note that the insurance adjuster may stress that you either have to legally make a recorded statement or that it will actually help your case. This is not true. Speak with an experienced attorney before discussing your claim.
Many car accident victims will give the insurance company a recorded statement and regret it later, as the thing they’ve said may end up hurting their claim:
- Mistakes in recalling the event, which could be interpreted as lying
- Guesses or estimations, instead of saying “I don’t know”
- Agreeing to certain terms without realizing it
- Letting emotions take control and say something you don’t mean
Usually, nothing is off the record when it comes to the insurance company, so you need to be very careful about what you say, and how. Seemingly small mistakes can end up being costly mistakes.
What Should You Do?
If you work with a St. Louis auto accident lawyer, you may ask the insurance company to simply contact your lawyer, as you will not be speaking with them directly. Your lawyer can handle all direct communications with the company so that the process can continue.
Much of the final settlement you receive in a car accident claim depends on a process of negotiations, as many of the costs have to be estimated:
- Pain and suffering
- Future medical expenses
- Lowered quality of life, etc.
You can have better results when building a strong case with the assistance of an experienced attorney.
Speak With a Car Accident Lawyer
Do you need to recover damages through an insurance claim? Get in touch with an experienced St. Louis car accident lawyer right away to make sure you’re successful. A lawyer will be by your side throughout the whole process and protect your rights.