What the Insurance Investigator Doesn’t Want You to Know
During a long term disability case, it is common for the insurance investigator to request a “field interview”.
First, they will call you and ask you casual questions about your health and your daily life. Do not be fooled! They are not calling to check on you because they care. They are looking for inconsistencies in your story to prove to a judge that you are lying about your disability.
Second, they will say that they need to have a face to face meeting to discuss how to are doing. This is called a field interview. Field Interviews are used to discredit claimants filing for disability.
Tips to Prepare You for a Field Interview:
Thanks to modern-day technology, insurance companies will have your complete background at their fingertips. They have access to your medical history, your credit report, and liens or bankruptcies, child support payments, delinquent payments, and more. They will use this information during the field interview to try to trick you into saying something that makes you appear to be dishonest. Go over this information with your attorney before the field interview. Plan to be asked some tough questions and stay calm. Your attorney will help guide you through these tough questions.
Sometimes insurance investigators will put you under surveillance before your interview. They will question your neighbors about your daily activities. They will watch you and follow you to see if you are doing anything that you said you couldn’t. They will record you.
Be vigilant! Do not overdo it. Sometimes your doctor may encourage you to carry on with your daily life to speed up your recovery, but an insurance investigator sees this as you telling a lie about the severity of your condition. Although the actual surveillance cannot be used against you, the insurance company will ask your doctor to look at the tape and make comments on your physical activities that can affect your case.
When the insurance company calls to “check on you,” they will try to persuade you to have the field interview in your home. They are trained to speak in a certain way to make you feel like you have no choice.
That is not true.
You have the right to have your field interview at another location and you should. Why? The insurance investigator is trained to go into your home and take notes on how to live. If you have a large TV, if your home has stairs, if you have pets, or if other people are living in your home. They will use all of this to build a case against you. You do not have to let them in your home. Arrange for the meeting to be somewhere else.
You Have the Right to Have Your Attorney Present
You have the right to have your attorney present. An insurance investigator might try to discourage you from bringing your attorney by implying that it is just a simple face to face conversation. Don’t let them fool you. Your attorney is trained to assist you and support you. Having an experienced attorney present will make your case much stronger and keep you from getting intimidated by the insurance company.
Preparation is Important
If you spend time preparing yourself for the interview, it will go smoothly. Let your neighbors know that there is a possibility that an investigator will come to see them to snoop around. Make sure to take it easy and don’t push yourself in the days before your interview. Go over anything that you think may come up during the interview with your attorney. Although field interviews can be scary, you can get through it with the right preparation.
Legal Representation by Experienced Long Term Disability Attorneys
If you’d like to speak to an experienced Long Term Disability Insurance Attorney about your denied claim, contact us at (888) 321-8131 to schedule a consultation. Although based in Florida, the Ortiz Law Firm represents claimants across the United States. We can help you evaluate your claim to determine whether you qualify for Long Term Disability Benefits and how to navigate through the appeals process if your claim has been denied.