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Are Insurance Companies Allowed to Surveil Claimants?  

When filing a personal injury claim, it is not uncommon for insurance companies or the liable party’s counsel to employ surveillance tactics when assessing personal injury cases. However, the legality and reliability of such surveillance raises important ethical questions surrounding privacy rights and the potential for abuse.  

In this article, we will explore:  

  • the extent to which insurance companies can conduct surveillance on claimants,  

  • the various tactics employed, and  

  • advice on how individuals can protect themselves. 

Social Media & Online Surveillance  

Insurance companies may utilize surveillance as a means to verify the legitimacy of a claim and assess the severity of an individual's injuries. While insurance companies have the right to investigate claims, there are legal boundaries that govern the use of surveillance. They must adhere to strict guidelines and respect claimants' privacy rights.  

Investigators cannot engage in activities that infringe upon the claimant's reasonable expectation of privacy. This means that surveillance tactics should not involve invasive methods or violate personal boundaries. 

Insurance companies often scour claimants' social media profiles to gather additional information. Photos, videos, and posts shared by claimants can provide insights into their activities and potentially challenge the credibility of their claims. 

Insurance adjusters and investigators may also conduct online searches to find any relevant information or evidence that could impact a claim. This may include researching claimants' online presence, public records, and even engaging with the claimant through anonymous online interactions. 

Other Ways You May Be Watched After the Accident 

Other tactics insurance companies may employ include:  

  • Audio surveillance. Investigators may submit transcripts of conversations they listened to in a public setting, audio taken from social media, and/or telephone recordings.  

  • Video surveillance. In addition to submitting videos of the accident, insurance company investigators may submit recordings of the injured party that speak to their conduct and severity of their injuries.  

  • Photographic surveillance. In addition to taking photos from your online posts, the other party may also submit photos of you after the accident as evidence.  

Connecticut Laws on Recording Conversations 

Many clients often wonder whether they can be recorded without their express consent. In Connecticut, under criminal law, it is illegal to eavesdrop on a conversation and to record a telephone call or communications that you are not the sender or receiver of without the consent of the parties involved in the conversation.  

However, a person can face civil consequences if you record phone communications without both parties’ consent. In civil cases, both parties must provide written consent before recording a phone conversation, and the recording should also include verbal consent. If an in-person conversation is recorded, only one person’s consent is required in civil cases.  

Can Someone Take My Photo Without Permission?  

Yes. In public places, you cannot reasonably expect to have privacy, and people are allowed to photograph or videotape you. However, if a person is on your private property, they must have your consent to take photos.  

How to Handle Insurance Company Surveillance  

If you find yourself in a personal injury claim, there are certain steps you can take to protect your privacy: 

  • Be mindful about your online presence. Social media posts, even those posted on private accounts, can be used against you in court. Be mindful of what you (and those close to you) post online. Review your social media profiles and ensure that the content aligns with your reported injuries and avoid posting activities that may contradict your claims. 

  • Adhere to medical advice. It is imperative that you follow the directions of your doctor following your injury. If you ignore their advice and an investigator documents your actions, this can impact your claim.  

  • Consult with your legal counsel. Seek advice from a legal professional who specializes in personal injury cases. They can provide guidance on how to navigate the complexities of surveillance tactics employed by insurance companies. 

  • Be consistent. When discussing the accident or case, be truthful and consistent in your statements regarding the details of your injury. Any inconsistencies discovered during surveillance may undermine your credibility. 

  • Focus on your recovery. Keep a record of your daily activities, including any limitations imposed by your injuries. This documentation can serve as evidence to support your claim and counter any contradictory surveillance findings. 

  • Document any behavior that crosses the line. If you suspect that you are being surveilled in an invasive or unethical manner, report your concerns to your legal counsel and the appropriate regulatory authorities. 

We Can Help with Your Claim 

At Zayas Law Firm, we take a client-centered approach to cases, which means that we take a comprehensive approach to addressing out clients’ individual needs and goals. If you have questions or are concerned about surveillance during your personal injury case, our attorneys are prepared to address your concerns and protect your rights to privacy. Once you retain our services, we can also help prepare you for other tactics opposing counsel may employ, support you throughout the claim, and help you develop a solid case strategy.  

Contact our firm online or at (860) 854-9156 to schedule a case consultation today.  

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