Dealing with the aftermath of an accident and insurance companies can be challenging enough, but what if you also suspect you are being followed and surveilled? Do insurance adjusters follow you around, and if so, is it legal, and why are they doing it? Below, our Los Angeles personal injury attorneys discuss insurance claims investigations and how to protect your claim if an insurance investigator follows you.

Do Insurance Adjusters Follow You Around After an Accident?

After an accident, the insurance company will investigate it to determine its causes, liability, and damages. When you file an injury claim for damages, it is possible that the insurance company may hire a private investigator to observe your daily activities and gather information about you. White car with a missing door and flipped over after a serious car accident

Why Is the Insurance Company Spying on Me?

Keep in mind that insurance companies are for-profit businesses. It is not in their best interests to pay more than the average claim amounts for car accidents or other accidents. They want to verify that a claimant is being honest about their injuries and the details of the accident before paying a claim. Therefore, they may hire an investigator to watch you and gather information.

What Will a Private Investigator Look for When Surveilling Me?

Insurance investigators, often private investigators, are hired to observe and gather evidence regarding your day-to-day activities. The goal is to assess whether your behavior matches the injuries and limitations reported in your accident claim.

An investigator hired by an insurance company will look for inconsistencies between your claim and your activities. For example, if you have filed a claim for a severe back injury that limits your mobility but are then seen lifting heavy objects, the insurance company may use this as damaging evidence against your claim.

Private investigators may use the following types of surveillance to gather information about claimants:

  • Photographic surveillance
  • Video surveillance
  • Social media investigations
  • Internet searches
  • Public record searches

Is It Legal for a Private Investigator to Follow Me?

Generally, it is legal for a private investigator to follow you and use photographic or video surveillance. Investigators must follow local and federal laws, which means they cannot trespass on private property or use illegal methods to obtain information. However, anything you do in public can be observed and recorded.

Insurance company investigators are prohibited from engaging in behavior that violates your right to privacy. For example, they cannot use an electronic tracking device to locate you or enter your private property without your consent. Additionally, they cannot perform illegal activities like opening your mail, hacking into your cell phone, or harassing you.

What to Do if You Suspect the Insurance Company Is Investigating You

Insurance company surveillance can be unnerving and stressful, especially when recovering from an accident. However, it is important to remember that you have done nothing wrong. You have nothing to worry about as long as your claim is genuine. Man pointing at a board filled with photos, maps and documents

However, there are several steps you can take to protect yourself and your claim while under surveillance. For example, our Los Angeles personal injury lawyers recommend that you:

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  • Continue your medical treatment and follow your doctor’s medical advice: It is critical to follow all medical advice from your doctor and continue your treatment until you are fully recovered. Make sure your actions reflect your reported medical tests after your accident. For example, if your doctor has told you not to drive or lift heavy objects, refrain from these physical activities until your doctor gives you medical clearance to resume them.
  • Mind your public activities: Remember, an investigator can legally observe and record anything you do in public. When in public, consider how your actions may affect your accident claim. Could the insurance company use your actions to downplay your injuries and minimize your damages?
  • Stay off social media sites: In today’s digital age, it is not just about physical surveillance. You can count on the insurance investigator to monitor your social media activity. Our Los Angeles personal injury attorneys recommend staying off social media altogether. However, if you do get online, avoid discussing the accident, your injuries, or your recovery. Photos and posts can be used as evidence against your claim.
  • Consult with an experienced personal injury attorney: If you suspect you are being watched by an investigator, discuss your situation with a Los Angeles personal injury lawyer. An attorney can guide how to proceed and ensure your rights are protected.

How to Maintain Privacy from Insurance Companies on Social Media

Social media networks like TikTok, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, and Twitter have become a significant part of our lives. We routinely share updates, photographs, and other details about our lives. However, insurance companies can use these seemingly innocent updates as damaging evidence against your injury claim. When it comes to using social media, we do not recommend it. However, a few tips to protect your claim include:

Update your privacy settings

Ensure your social media accounts are updated with the highest privacy settings available. You should limit who can see your profiles and who can follow you. Be mindful about whether to accept friend requests or followers.

Do not post about your case

Be very cautious about what you post online. You should avoid posting anything related to your accident, injuries, or recovery.

Limit your activity online

During the claims process, try to limit your social media activity. The less you post, the less information the insurance company has to use against you.

Inform your family and friends

Even if your privacy settings are high, an insurance adjuster or investigator may be able to get information from other people’s posts. They could be following your friends or family members who have lower privacy settings or might share information about you. Ask your family and friends to avoid posting pictures or updates about your accident or health.

Remember, social media is a public space, and anything you post can be used as evidence, potentially jeopardizing your claim. Our best advice is to stay off social media until the resolution of your case. However, consult with a personal injury lawyer first if you must post. Your attorney can advise you on protecting your claim while using social media.

What Questions Do Insurance Companies Ask After an Accident?

Contact Our Los Angeles Personal Injury Attorneys Today

Are you worried about insurance company investigations or dealing with the challenges of an accident claim in Los Angeles or Southern California? Reach out to our experienced Los Angeles personal injury attorneys for a free consultation about your situation.

At the Law Offices of Steers & Associates, our legal team has significant experience and success in helping accident victims obtain compensation for their injuries. We understand the tactics that insurance companies use to minimize and deny accident claims. During a free case evaluation, we can help you understand your legal rights, how to protect your claim, and determine how we may be able to help. Call us at (800) 824-5416 or fill out our online contact form to get started.