An examination under oath (often referred to as an “EUO”) is sometimes necessary to secure compensation from the insurance company after a claim. During this meeting, a representative from the insurance carrier’s legal team asks questions about your accident and injuries, and you must answer them truthfully.
This does not occur in every car accident case or every time you file a claim. Even though you may not be required to attend an EUO, you should know how to handle the process if you encounter it. You should not consider undergoing an EUO without an experienced personal injury lawyer by your side.
- What Is an Examination Under Oath in a Personal Injury Case?
- Why Is My Insurer Requesting an Examination Under Oath?
- Do I Have to Agree to an Examination Under Oath?
- What Should I Do If My Insurance Carrier Demands an EUO?
- What Is My Attorney’s Role in Recovering Compensation?
- Discuss Your Case With Our Team for Free Today
What Is an Examination Under Oath in a Personal Injury Case?
An examination, under oath, is a legal questioning about your case. It is a formal proceeding, although it is often held in a meeting room or a lawyer’s office and not a courtroom. During this meeting, the insurance company questions the policyholder under oath. A court reporter is also present to create a transcript of the responses.
Some insurance companies use EUOs as a part of a claim investigation. This allows them to gather and evaluate the policyholder’s side of the story. They might be more likely in cases where there is some question about what occurred and if the policyholder has a valid claim.
If this sounds a lot like a deposition, you are correct. The difference between a deposition and an examination under oath is that one occurs as a part of the claims process, while the other is a step in the discovery following a lawsuit. In that way, an EUO is to an insurance claim what a deposition is to litigation.
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Why Is My Insurer Requesting an Examination Under Oath?
The insurance company will likely present the EUO as a step in gathering the information they need to pay your claim appropriately and accurately. However, they are not likely to spend the time and money conducting an EUO if they believe it will support your claim and allow you to recover a large payout.
Instead, the insurance carrier is most likely looking for a reason to delay, minimize, or deny your claim. They want you to say something they are able to use against you or delay the case long enough that you will not argue with a lowball offer when it finally comes.
Even as their policyholder, your insurance company is not working for you. This is why you never want to go into an EUO without an experienced attorney representing you.
Do I Have to Agree to an Examination Under Oath?
Typically, EUOs occur when you file a claim based on your own insurance policies. This could be a collision or comprehensive property damage claim, a no-fault auto insurance claim, or an uninsured motorist claim. Since you are working with your own insurance company, you likely agreed to give an EUO as a part of your agreement when you bought your policy. (In other words, your cooperation is a condition of your insurance contract. If you refuse to cooperate, the carrier will most likely be released from their obligations under the claim.)
Under some circumstances, your insurer could also request that your healthcare providers participate in an examination under oath to discuss your injuries and the services they provided.
What Should I Do If My Insurance Carrier Demands an EUO?
If your insurance company disputes your claim or requests an EUO and you do not already have an attorney working on your case, call one immediately. You will want to work with a lawyer to help navigate this process and represent your best interests. Not only will your attorney know and protect your rights, but they will also help you prepare for the EUO and put your mind at ease about it.
An attorney will review the types of questions you should expect and how to address any points of disagreement in the case. They will also gather any supporting documents or other evidence that might be necessary. Lastly, they will be with you during the EUO and protect your rights throughout this process.
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What Is My Attorney’s Role in Recovering Compensation?
When you work with a personal injury lawyer on your case, they aim to recover appropriate compensation and get justice for you. They will assess your options and take the necessary steps to develop a compelling case. The types of damages will depend on your injuries and other case facts but could include:
- Current and future medical bills
- Care and support costs, including estimated future needs
- Income losses
- Diminished earning capacity
- Related expenses
- Pain and suffering damages
They will represent your best interests throughout the insurance claims process, including during an EUO as needed. In addition, you should expect the following:
- Regular updates about your case
- The identification of the liable parties
- Managing all related communication with the insurance carrier, liable party, and others
- Gather evidence and develop a solid case
- Determine an appropriate settlement value for your case
An experienced personal injury lawyer will know how to handle these claims and any issues that arise. This includes accompanying you to an examination under oath, representing you during a deposition, or providing guidance at every step, if there is a lawsuit in your case.
Your law firm will fight for the money you need to pay for your care, cover your related losses, and compensate you for your physical and psychological injuries. Most get started on these cases with no upfront fees. Instead of asking for a retainer or tracking hourly fees, they charge only a percentage of the case recovery. They only get paid if and when they recover money for you.
Discuss Your Case With Our Team for Free Today
Friedman & Simon, L.L.P. provides free case reviews with one of our passionate advocates for the injured. Our team offers these complimentary initial case consultations for injury victims hurt by someone else’s carelessness or recklessness. We represent clients on Long Island and elsewhere in the New York metropolitan area.
Reach our multilingual staff (Spanish, Greek, Bengali, Tamil, and Kannada) to learn more today. Call or use our online contact form.