I was just injured on the job, and now an investigator/adjuster from the workers' compensation company is calling me - what do I do?
If you are represented, or want to be represented, you should not discuss your injury with anyone from the insurance company. Instead, you should only provide them with your attorney's contact information. The insurance company knows they are not allowed to talk directly to you when you are represented.
Next, do not trust that the insurance company will "do the right thing" if you give a statement to them. No matter what an investigator or adjuster says to you, the insurance company will use any reason it can to deny you workers' comp benefits. For many injuries, the insurance company can determine whether your claim should be accepted without ever talking to you.
Finally, if you are going to speak with the insurance company, be extremely careful about what you say and how you say it. Your answers should be honest and very brief – these people are not your friends, and there is no advantage to volunteering information you are not asked about.
Ultimately, talking directly to an insurance company representative is a risky prospect for most injured workers who do not deal with these issues regularly. A lawyer's most important jobs is to be your advocate, and your mouthpiece, so that you are protected in every respect. A competent injury attorney can also explain to you all of your rights, including whether you have a lawsuit against someone other than your employer.
-Zachariah Hansen, The Arns Law Firm, San Francisco, CA
For more information on work-site accidents and
your legal options, visit the ARNS Website.
"Interaction via "Ask the Expert" does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Any advice given is neither legal advice nor does it serve as a replacement for hiring an attorney. In addition, any case results mentioned or discussed are not guarantees of similar results."
This Month's Expert; Zachariah Hansen
Zachariah Hansen has proven himself as an indefatigable litigator who has obtained outstanding results for the clients of The Arns Law Firm. Zach was actually a student in Bob Arns’ trial practice class at the University of San Francisco Law School for 3rd year law students. After the class was completed, Bob was so impressed with Zach’s ability, great heart for the cause, and calm demeanor in the heat of battle, he offered Zach a job. Zach has been dedicating his legal career to helping people who have been injured obtain the compensation they deserve.