Can The Insurance Company SPY ON ME With PRIVATE INVESTIGATORS?
Insurance Company Hires A Private Investigator
A client called me and asked me, is it possible that anybody is following her. I had to tell her the truth. Yes, it's possible. She's got an injury claim. It's a workers comp case and this primarily applies to workers comp. I've definitely had cases where this happened in other kinds of cases like car crashes, fall down, especially cases where somebody's claiming a permanent injury.
The insurance company goes out and hires an investigator. They hire a licensed private investigator to go out and usually they take videos, they don't take pictures or photographs because photographs don't really do the trick they need to do it with a camera. And why are they doing that?
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They Cost A Lot Of Money
Well they're doing it to see whether your complaints of pain and the things that you say that you can't do or things that you're doing. So usually they'll follow you for a week or two, and if they really want to get you they'll follow you for a week or two and then stop a couple of months and then follow you again for a couple of weeks. It's really limited by what the insurance company wants to pay for because obviously private investigators are not inexpensive, they cost a lot of money.
They Can Follow You Anywhere
Where can they follow you? Well anywhere in public. Technically under the law, even if your drapes are open and you're exercising in your living room they can take video of you through your window. But usually what they do is, they follow you around out in public. They'll park a van or a car around your house and try and get video of you like walking out of the house and then they follow you around.
I once had a case where my client and her daughter were the same height. It was winter and they were all bundled up in a winter coat and the daughter went out and shoveled. They both have dark hair with about the same length and she was bundled up in a winter coat and she went out and shoveled and they took video of it and they showed it to me or threatened it. And then they eventually showed it to me, I showed it to my client because she was claiming a serious back injury and she's like, " That's not me, that's my daughter".
If You Think You Are Being Followed, You Probably Are
Sure enough, there were a few frames in the video if you paused it. You could tell it wasn't her, you can tell it was somebody else. So my point is, the insurance companies don't care if the video they have is of you or not. I'm going to admit it, it's creepy, that they hire a stranger to follow you around, pretend not to be anybody, pretend not to be following you, pretend not to be videotaping you, and then they do. Creepy as hell. And they don't give you any warning. The upshot is, if you think they might be following you and videotaping you, they probably are.
Here's what I hate about video. If they follow you every time you leave the house for two weeks, what are they going to want to show to the jury? They're going to want to show that at one time, you lifted some grocery bags to say that your backs do not hurt. They don't show all the times you're at home lying in bed or canceling social engagements because your back hurts. But you know what? You gotta eat and occasionally you got to carry some groceries, if you need groceries and there's nobody there to help you.
It Is A Rotten Thing To Do
My point is, what they do is, they pick one little thing out and try to make a mountain out of a molehill. I always tell my clients, man if you think you know there is always a possibility of surveillance, if you think you're being followed you probably are. Just mind your P's and Q's. Don't do anything that's going to hurt your injury worse.
It's easy for me at my law firm because we don't exaggerate and I never tell my clients to exaggerate. Your injury is what your injury is. If you have that approach to it, they can take as much video as they want even though it's disturbing and a breach of your privacy and a rat and kind of a rotten thing to do.
At the end of the day, if that's what they want to do, if they don't find anything it's not going to be a big deal. Probably doesn't make you feel that much better but if you think anybody's following you they might be. So hope this information helps you take care if I can help you let me know
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