November 9, 2018
How to Deal with Surveillance after an Auto Accident in Michigan
After an auto accident, video surveillance may be used in some cases, especially to establish who was at fault in a car accident or to evaluate the legitimacy of compensation cases. The idea of having your daily activities documented may seem a bit intrusive. So why do insurance companies and defense lawyers surveil victims? If you or a loved one was recently injured in auto accident, a Michigan auto accident lawyer at Elia & Ponto can help you file an auto accident claim in Michigan and understand if you have a Michigan car accident case.
Reasons for surveillance
Insurance companies cite fraud as the leading cause of surveillance, even when it comes to Michigan PLPD insurance coverage. It is estimated that $80 billion is lost yearly in the insurance business due to fraud. On the other hand, these companies are expected by stockholders to only pay for legitimate claims. As such, they put surveillance in place to smoke out the fraudulent claims and deny them.
Other times, there might be different stories of how an accident took place. In this case, video footage can be used as a deciding factor. Adjusters may view video footage that was shot at the occurrence of the accident to establish how the accident took place. A car accident lawyer in Michigan can help you file a car accident claim if you have been recently injured in an auto accident.
Types of surveillance
This refers to a ‘stakeout’. In this type of surveillance, the investigator observes the victim from far or from distinct locations. It may also require the services of several investigators. The observation may be over a short or a long duration of time. Insurance companies employ this method to watch the victim’s daily routine.
This tactic of surveilling is similar to the above tactic. However, the difference is that in this tactic, they will not use a human investigator. Moreover, technology can replace human investigators by placing sound and video recorders in places the claimant.
This involves determining where the victim is going to and where they have been. In some cases, the investigators may thrill you, though, discreetly. In other cases, the investigator may use tracking technologies such as GPS tracking or location apps.
Social media surveillance
With the advent of social media, insurance companies have taken to the internet to surveil victims as social media has made it easy for investigators to uncover contradicting information that claimants present. Social media surveillance is not only cheap, but it also gives a more realistic appraisal of the functioning capacity of the claimant. However, following the fact that nobody has a bad day on social media, it is very easy for posts and photos to be misinterpreted.
How to Deal with Surveillance
1. Be prudent
You have to be wary of your daily activities. For example, some of the menial activities that you undertake in may be termed as showing inconsistency in your claim. Activities such as frequent driving, taking long travels, taking care of elderly relatives or volunteering at places may be used to show inconsistency with the disability you claim. For that reason, before you undertake in these activities, have an explanation in place as to how and why you performed the activity.
2. Mind your social media activity
With everybody being active in one or more social media sites, this means that your insurance provider can still trace your physical activity or emotional wellbeing by what you post online. Insurance agents will go through all your social media accounts with a fine toothcomb to find compelling evidence. For this reason, you have to be mindful of what you post online. In fact, during the duration of the case, keep off posting anything on social media. A Detroit car accident attorney will ask you to avoid doing this.
3. Be vigilant
When your insurance company or a defense lawyer is surveilling, you might be aware of it. One, you might notice someone who is constantly watching you. Alternatively, you might notice a car that is parked frequently near your home and that does not belong to the neighbors. If you encounter such things, do not brush them off as paranoia. In most cases, surveillance might be underway. As such, trust your sixth sense and be wary of your activities if you believe that you are being surveilled.
4. Take note of harassing activities
Sometimes, the surveillance might go overboard. Know that it is illegal for insurance companies to take part in invasive surveillance. In such an instance, contact your auto insurance lawyer and report the matter. Our lawyers at Elia & Ponto will help keep the investigators in check and ensure your privacy. In addition, if the insurance company is guilty of invasive surveillance, this will hurt their case in court.
Invasive surveillance may apply when investigators infringe on your private places. For example, being at your home is considered private. Therefore, when in such a place, an investigator should not be listening in or observing movements. If the investigator goes ahead to record conversations or videotape you while in your private place, the evidence will be considered illegal.
Thus, if you are looking for a Michigan car accident lawyer to help you file a Michigan car accident claim, our lawyers at Elia & Ponto will guide you in the whole process. In addition, if your claim has been denied by an insurance company due to the evidence against you, our lawyers will help you fight back and regain your benefits.