Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Does an insurance company use video surveillance in automobile accident cases in Maryland or Virginia?

Absolutely. In serious accident cases you need to be aware of the fact that if you are claiming a permanent injury the insurance carrier becomes more concerned about its exposure. If the adjuster has received medical reports where you claim such a disability the adjuster may hire an investigator to follow you and video your activities. This is often done on the day you have a scheduled doctors appointment with the insurance company's doctor for an evaluation. Amazingly, Maryland and Virginia personal injury lawyers will inform their client of the questions the doctor for the insurance carrier may ask, yet forget to tell them their activities for the day may be videoed. This certainly is a home run for an insurance carrier when a client is shown raking leaves on the same day she told the doctor she was basically confined to her bed (this happened to a well known Baltimore accident attorney).

Many insurance companies, like the Hartford are known to conduct video surveillance in injury cases where a permanency is claimed once a lawsuit if filed.

I inform all of the injury clients I meet in my Columbia, Maryland office, and tell all of the accident lawyers who work for the law firm in Maryland and Virginia, to instruct all accident clients, with respect to video surveillance in this fashion:

1. If you are not claiming a permanent injury odds are there will be no video surveillance;

2. If the insurance policy for the defendant driver is 25,000 or less video surveillance is not likely;

3. If you are seeking large permanent damage and are claiming you can no longer work, walk, drive, enjoy leisure activities or working outdoors, beware of video surveillance;

4. If you have a scheduled deposition, or any meeting with a doctor for the defendant, expect video surveillance.

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