Many things will happen in the events following an accident. One of those things that many people don’t talk about is the event of an insurance company requesting a statement. An adjuster requests your statement in order to hear your side of the story, theoretically speaking. They will need your side of the story – along with the story of their insured party – to fully understand the circumstances of the accident in question.
However, just because they may need it to fully understand the circumstances of the accident, that does not mean you have to provide a statement for them. In fact, it may even be in your best interest not to. The fact of the matter is that most adjusters will be using your statement against you in any way they are able to.
The only reason you should ever provide a statement, in any case, is if it is legally required of you. This counts for the police, your own insurance company, or any other party that may be able to legally require a statement from you. If it is not legally required, you should avoid giving a statement like the plague.
Unfortunately, adjusters are trained to ask specific questions in specific ways that are designed to cause you to slip up and provide information that can be used against you. This does not even need to be accurate information. In fact, the most common way someone can be made to slip up is by being “forced” to guess certain information regarding the crash. For example, they may ask you how fast you were going leading up to the accident. If you are not sure of this information, you may end up guessing and saying a speed that could incriminate you in their process.
Why would the other insurance company purposefully try to find ways to make you slip up and provide information – whether accurate or not – that could incriminate you or put some fault of the accident on you? The adjuster’s purpose is to reduce the claims they have to pay. In order to do this, however, they must find a way to deny these claims. The easiest way to deny a claim is to use your words against you.
The other party’s insurance company could do this in many ways. They may compare the statements you gave following the accident and attempt to find any inconsistencies between them. If they do manage to find any differences, they will use these to say that you lied, which could cause your claim to be denied.
They may also use certain techniques and ways of saying things that could back you into a corner and cause you to say something that could hurt your claim. This often happens when you respond negatively to pestering and go along with whatever the adjuster is saying. You may not think anything of it at the time, but, if you are giving a recorded statement, anything you say will later be used in their favor.
Although this option is still completely optional and only required if specifically said so by your own insurance company, you could potentially give a written statement instead. If you choose to do this, you would simply politely decline to give a recorded statement to the adjuster when requested and state that you will give a written statement at a later time.
Giving a written statement is better in nearly all cases if choosing to give a statement of any kind because, typically, people think much clearer when given an opportunity to take the time to write things down. If you write your statement, you are avoiding the pressure of a giving a statement on the spot in response to pressured questions designed to make you falter.
In the end, the answer is no, but it depends on who is asking for the statement. To put things simply, you should only ever give a statement of any kind if it is legally required of you in that situation. It would be smart of you to consult with an personal injury lawyer in these situations. personal injury lawyers may be able to assist you in how to handle statements following an accident.