Do I have to give a recorded statement to an insurance company?

No. Under Texas law, they cannot require you to make a recorded statement.

If you are asked to do so, tell the insurance company employee that you decline to make a recorded statement, as is your right under Texas law.

In fact, after an auto accident in Texas, you should generally not say anything to the insurance company before consulting an attorney.

But if you do speak to an insurance company representative, say as little as possible.

They may try to use the words you say to claim you were at fault. In order to protect your own rights, you should be cautious.

Dealing With Insurance Companies After You Are Injured in an Accident

After an accident, insurance adjusters investigate how the accident happened, and who was at fault. They also examine what property damage and bodily injuries resulted from the accident.

Based on what they find, insurance adjusters calculate how much money the insurance company should pay to the injured victims. This is called a settlement offer. They are offering to settle the case and be done with any responsibility for that accident.

If you accept the amount of money they are offering, you usually cannot file a lawsuit for any other injuries or damage caused by that particular accident. That matter is settled.

Why Shouldn’t I Give a Statement to an Insurance Company After an Accident?

Insurance Companies Protect Their Own Interests

Insurance companies are not good or bad. They are businesses.

Like most businesses, insurance companies are driven by profit. Lower settlements mean higher profits.

So when an insurance company has to pay for injuries and damages caused by the clients they insure, company employees will offer as little money as possible to settle a case. It’s not personal. It’s in the job description.

If you speak to an insurance adjuster on the phone, the adjuster might be kind and understanding. The adjuster might say they want to reach a fair agreement.

But even if the employee you are speaking with is personally sympathetic, the employer expects the matter to be settled as quickly as possible, for the lowest possible settlement they can convince you to accept.

Some might even ask a question that sounds compassionate, but is designed to make you say something that can be used against you. Even saying ‘sorry’ can be offered as evidence of your guilt by an insurance company attorney to reduce your settlement or even deny the claim.

Your Statement May Be Mistaken and Can Hurt You

Most people can be quite shaken after an accident. If you were injured, you may be in the hospital or on pain medication.

When you feel up to it, it is important to go over what you remember. But it can take a bit to recollect your thoughts. Things may be more clear when you are calm and in a safe place.

That is why you do not want to make a statement to the insurance company before you have clarified what happened. You want to sort out what you remember without someone challenging you. Or in the case of many insurance adjusters, watching your every word for something they can use against you. That is why you have to be careful when speaking to the insurance company.

And remember, just because you may have received a traffic ticket in an accident, a traffic ticket doesn’t prove who was at fault. So be sure not to make any claims or admissions of guilt to the insurance company, even if you did receive a ticket.

What Should You Say to an Insurance Company After an Accident

Under Texas Insurance regulations, you have a limited amount of time to make a claim on an insurance policy. So you do not want to wait to report the accident to the insurance company.

That will involve making some statements to an insurance company employee. Most insurance companies notify you that they are recording these phone calls, so you should expect that anything you say may be used against you.

How to Speak to an Insurance Company Representative

If you do speak to an insurance company representative, you should:

Decline to give a recorded statement.
  • They may try to pressure you to do so. Tell them you decline to give a recorded statement, as is your right under Texas law.
Be calm and unemotional.
  • Think of it as a business discussion, like buying a used car.
Be polite, and not argumentative.
  • You are not talking to a friend. But you do want to file a claim.
Explain that you will only give them basic information.
  • The insurance company employee is only entitled to basic information like your name, address, phone number and other contact information.

Avoid volunteering too much information.
  • You do not have to discuss what happened in the accident.
  • Do not discuss other family members or your work or personal situation.
  • Do not discuss your injuries or medical treatment.
Decline any suggestion that you accept or reject their settlement.
  • Insurance adjusters have huge caseloads. They are pressured by employers to settle claims as quickly as possible.
  • But your accident and injury is important to you. At the very least, you have the right to sleep on it. But you should probably calculate your property damage and medical bills.
  • You may have to miss work, or receive physical therapy.You have the right to understand all your costs before making a decision.

Speak to a Texas Personal Injury Attorney After an Accident

Keep in mind that you do not have to speak to the insurance company at all.

You can simply contact a Texas personal injury attorney from Justinian & Associates, and we will make that call. And we’ll only make it after understanding your story, investigating and gathering evidence.

When we call an insurance company, we make your case and stand our ground. We explain why Texas law makes them responsible, and we demand justice, whatever that means for you.

Call, text or email us for a free consultation. We can meet you wherever is convenient. We will listen to your story, and explain your rights under the law.

If you ask us to represent you, we will contact the insurance company and you won’t have to deal with them again. We are warriors for the injured.

And unless we get you money for your injuries, you never owe us any fee. Contact Justinian & Associates. Just a conversation. Never any obligation.