I have FIVE SECRETS I have learned from over
25 years of experience in successfully helping people and families with personal injury and wrongful death cases.
SECRET #1 Recorded statements can hurt your claim.
Insurance companies go out of their way to encourage people to give them a recorded statement.
They do this to help reduce the amount of money they will have to pay on a claim.
The reason that recorded statements are so tricky,
is that most people think that they won't hurt their case by giving the adjuster a recorded statement,
or they think they have to give a recorded statement or else
the insurance company won't fix their car or pay their bills.
But before you give a recorded statement, get the help of a lawyer.
Let him tell you if you have to give a statement or not.
Let him tell you what questions you do or don't have to answer.
Here is how and why recorded statements are so dangerous.
The questions they ask you are designed to be used against you later.
For example, they will ask you what injuries you received from the accident.
If you leave out one injury, they will later accuse you of lying, and say,
now you complain of a knee injury, but when we took your recorded statement right after the accident,
you did not say anything about a knee injury, so you must be making this up to make a profit from the accident case.
The second biggest way they use a recorded statement against you,
is by getting you to guess at an answer about how the crash happened.
Or get you to say that you don't know something about the accident, then later use this against you.
For example, they may ask how fast was the guy going who rear ended you.
And you might say, I think he was going at least forty-five miles per hour.
And you just say this since the crash felt really hard.
the facts indicate that the property damage was minor and that his speed was closer to ten to fifteen miles per hour.
So then they may say, wow .
you were really exaggerating the speed when we took your statement, so, are you now exaggerating your injuries today?
See how tricky this can be!
Or another example is when they ask you where the other car came from, and you say, I don't know.
They then make up a plausible explanation of why their insured was not at fault
since you can't say what they did wrong.
The only reason you answered I don't know
is because you have not had enough time to really investigate the whole thing,
or see all of the information and evidence.
And so when you gave the recorded statement,
it was unfair to you since you were not yet fully able to know many things about how the accident happened.
SECRET #2 Insurance companies hope you don't talk to a lawyer.
Documents maintained by some insurance companies show that they track lawyers experience and success
and that they adjust their settlement offers based on the reputation of the attorney.
Consider this real life example from our law firm.
A young woman was rear ended in a car crash and it damaged a breast implant.
She tried to settle the case herself and only received low offers.
The young woman thought these offers were too low and hired me to help her.
The insurance company wouldn't budge until I told them that we wouldn't take a penny less than their one hundred thousand dollar policy limits
and they had three days to pay or else I was withdrawing the settlement offer
and was going to sue their insured and let a jury decide what would be fair compensation for my client's losses.
Interestingly enough, with my help,
her case was settled in those three remaining days for the full policy limits of one hundred thousand dollars.
This is just one example of why insurance companies want to settle cases before you speak to a lawyer.
It is very important for you to tell your doctor everything about your injuries from the accident on the first visit.
Documenting the truth about your injuries is the key to getting a fair settlement.
Going to the doctor when you need treatment,
and telling your doctor everything that is bothering you, is vitally important to your case.
Here’s an example of why this is so important:
Let’s say you have a neck injury that’s really troubling you and your knee also hurts a little from the accident.
You go to the doctor and for the first three weeks, you only talk about your neck pain.
Then as the pain in your neck becomes more tolerable,
you start to worry about your knee pain that hasn’t improved.
So you tell your doctor about your knee pain for the first time, four weeks after the accident.
He diagnoses torn cartilage, and you need surgery.
Guess what the insurance company is going to say?
They’re going to say you hurt your knee one month after the accident and not in the accident
because if you had hurt your knee in the accident, you would have told your doctor about it on the first visit.
But since you waited, then they can blame the injury on anything but the accident.
This is why you should tell your doctor about every little thing that may be bothering you on the first visit.
Also, your prior medical history is a key part of your case.
In Florida, if you have a pre-existing injury or condition, you are entitled to recover more money, not less.
This is because it is going to be easier to hurt you since you already have a pre-existing condition.
It is going to make your injury more serious or permanent.
This is why it is so important to tell all of your doctors about all your prior accidents,
injuries and treatments before this accident.
I say, don't hide or minimize your pre-existing conditions, tell your doctors about all of them.
Honesty is the best policy.
This is one we don’t need to tell you, but there are a few people out there who need to hear this.
There are cases where the insurance company won’t settle and then the jury gives an outrageously low award at trial.
An insurance company won’t settle a case if they feel the injuries or damages are being exaggerated.
They know if they take a case like that to trial, the jury will punish the injured person for being dishonest.
If a case goes to trial, we trust the jury to figure out the truth and we’re honest with them about our cases.
We find that juries reward this kind of honesty with fair and just results.
As in all areas of life, honesty is the best policy.
It gets the best results.
Insurance companies spend Millions of Dollars to make the public think that lawsuits are frivolous.
The insurance industry has a multi-million dollar public relations machine
that is constantly portraying injury victims and their lawyers as filing frivolous lawsuits in our courts.
They want to mislead the public into believing that these cases are about making a profit from injuries,
which is blatantly false.
They want the public to think that any compensation is undeserved.
People who have been injured because of someone else's fault are entitled to fair compensation for their losses.
That is the law.
That is justice.
It is about fixing what can be fixed, and helping what can be helped, and making up for what can't be fixed or helped.
Big businesses want to increase their profits by not having to pay for the damages and injuries they cause.
For example, having truck drivers drive too many hours, which endangers everyone on the highway.
Or by not maintaining tires and brakes and other important safety equipment.
Think about what would happen if a law was passed that said that no one could ever bring a personal injury claim.
Think about how reckless and dangerous companies would be!
If they were allowed to escape their responsibility for the accidents they cause,
and the injuries, damages and suffering they create, they would have absolutely no reason to be safe.
When their only focus is on profits, no one is caring about safety.
Fortunately, the law allows injured victims to bring a claim when they suffer damages from a negligent person or company.
The purpose of a personal injury claim is to make up and compensate for the damages caused by negligent parties.
It is to encourage people and businesses to be safer, by holding them accountable for the damages they cause.
These are just some of the secrets the Insurance Industry hope you don't find out until it is too late.
There are many other traps for the unwary.
As a lawyer helping thousands of people throughout my career,
I hope that by sharing this information I can help even more people protect their rights.
I believe one of the reasons my clients get such good results,
is that they are well educated about the process of their injury case.
This helps them avoid making costly mistakes.
By watching our videos and reading our books, our clients are better able to help protect their rights.
Thank you for watching this video.
I hope you have found it helpful and will share this valuable information with your friends and family.