If the insurance company is having an investigator contact you, there is a good chance they have an issue with your claim.
Many people have a general knowledge of what happens in workers’ compensation cases. An employee sustains an injury, they report it, they often choose to speak with a workers compensation attorney, and both sides typically come to an agreement. While this is what happens in some cases, others get much more complicated. One way this happens is if your employer’s insurance company hires a private investigator. Here is what you should do if this investigator contacts you during your claim.
Don’t Answer Right Away
The way they will likely contact you is on the phone. When they do, do not offer any information. Remember, you are not legally obligated to talk to them, so telling them that you need to consult with your lawyer first is perfectly okay. The reason you should act this way is that no matter how friendly an investigator sounds, they are likely trying to catch you in a lie. On a call like this, they often attempt to trick you. Because of this, you should always decline to speak to them until you speak with your workers comp attorney.
Consult With Your Attorney
Once you tell the investigator that you need to talk to your lawyer, you should do just that. When you do, they will inform you on best practices, keep you safe from any traps an investigator might set, and perhaps give that investigator a call themselves.
How to Respond
Though different lawyers have different strategies for dealing with private investigators, there is typically no need for you to talk with the investigator. There is generally very little for you to gain from cooperating. At this point in the investigation, you will likely have already given an official statement, so going into more detail with an investigator it more likely to hurt you than to help. That being said, your lawyer may recommend cooperation if the conditions of your claim warrant it. In this case, they will still have their guard up and likely accompany you to any interview you might schedule.
Expect Increased Scrutiny
If the insurance company is sending an investigator to talk to you, there is a good chance they have an issue with your claim. Once you deny contact or engage in it with your lawyer present, that problem will likely grow. The result will be increased scrutiny on the specifics of your case. One additional thing to watch out for is the insurance company conducting surveillance. They sometimes do this to catch somebody acting in a way that doesn’t support that person’s injuries, thus weakening their case.
Now that you understand what to do if a private investigator tries to get into contact, you can handle that situation with confidence. Ultimately, the number one thing you should do is speak with your St. Louis work injury attorney before making any decisions. When you do, they will use their experience and expertise to advise you and keep your claim safe.