A truck driver from Georgia got hurt in Illinois while unloading part of his haul in Peoria.  Because the accident happened in Illinois he can get Illinois work comp benefits.
He called me because apparently the insurance adjuster told him that it’s the law that he has to give a recorded statement about the accident to her and if he doesn’t then the insurance company can withhold his benefits.  He wanted to know if that was true.
I have no idea what the law is in Georgia, but can tell you that without a doubt it’s not true for Illinois.  You don’t have to give a recorded statement and you shouldn’t give one either.
The insurance company wants to record you because they are looking for some evidence that can be used to deny you benefits.  They make up the questions and they try to make you say something that will hurt you and help them.  It’s not just about getting the facts of how you recently hurt yourself.  If you injured your back last week on the job, they’ll want to quiz you about back treatment from ten years ago.  They’ll ask you how often you drink.  Sometimes they’ll make stuff up to see how you respond such as “A co-worker of yours told us that you were complaining of back pain two weeks ago.  That’s true, isn’t it?”
It’s all designed to trip you up and scare you.  And you don’t have to play that game.
When we start representing an injured worker, we tell them that we will deal with all communication from the insurance company.  If the insurance company wants to send us written questions, we’ll take a look at them and consider which ones to respond to.  But we don’t let the adjuster go on a fishing expedition or try to find a loop hole to hurt you.
An attorney’s job is to protect their clients.  You can look out for yourself too by knowing as much basic information as possible.  That is one reason we created this blog, to educate injured workers.  And much like life, sometimes saying nothing is your best bet.

We are workers’ compensation attorneys who help people with Illinois work injuries anywhere in IL via our statewide network of attorneys. Contact us and we will answer your questions or find the right lawyer for your situation.

By Michael Helfand