What is a recorded statement? Do I need an attorney for it?
YOU SHOULD HAVE ALWAYS HAVE AN ATTORNEY PRESENT WHEN YOU GIVE A RECORDED STATEMENT!
A recorded statement is a recorded telephone conversation conducted by an insurance company for the purpose of obtaining all the relevant facts of an accident in order to determine who may have caused it. Insurance adjusters will ask a series of questions designed to find out if there was any thing that could have been done to avoid or that you may have done that contributed to the accident.
Not all injury cases require the plaintiff to give a recorded statement with the at fault party's insurance company. They are usually only required if fault for the accident is in dispute. There are many reasons for this (i.e. if their insured has a different version of the events, the police report does not say who was at fault, or the location of the property damage tells a different story than the narratives given, etc...)
Insurance adjusters are trained to trip you up. They want to find a reason why you could have caused the accident. They will challenge your recollection of distance, color of traffic lights, where you were, where the other party was, speed, etc...Most people fail to realize just how limited their memory is. It is impossible for the human brain to take in a complex series of
Recorded statements are usually only requested from the plaintiff when the cause of the accident is disputed. Therefore, it is especially important you get an experienced personal injury attorney that can be on the lookout for loaded questions or tricks.
Liability decisions are tough to overturn once they are made. It is tough, but not impossible. I have won six figure settlements overturning errors made in recorded statements given prior to my involvement.
I do not require that my clients come in to give recorded statements. We usually give them on a three-way conference call. I do not do much, if any, of the talking unless necessary. The purpose is for the client to give a truthful accounting of how the accident occurred. I will speak up when and if the insurance company tries to turn your story around.