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Should I talk to the other driver’s insurance?

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By Rachel Miller

Generally, no. If you are in a car accident, whether minor or severe, you can expect that the insurance company for the other driver will contact you. They will often be polite and professional and may even say that they just want to help you. They will often even ask you to make a recorded statement. It can be tempting to talk to the opposing driver’s insurance – particularly when the other driver was at fault. However, generally speaking, victims of car accidents should not speak to the other driver’s insurance. They should particularly not agree to give a recorded statement. Remember, you are not obligated in any way to speak to the other driver’s insurance or to give a statement.

It is important to remember that the insurance company of the other driver has no obligation to you. Their job is to represent the interests of their insured and their company. They are seeking to minimize the amount of money that they will have to pay for the accident. They do this by asking you questions that will elicit answers showing that (1) you were partially or entirely at fault for the accident; and (2) you did not have injuries or your injuries are only mild. The answers you give will be used against you to evaluate your claim. Your answers will also be used against you at trial if the case proceeds through litigation. Under Idaho law, your answers are not considered hearsay.

When contacted by the other driver’s insurance, you can politely tell them that they can have access to the police report (which will contain all the basic facts – names, location of the accident, vehicle makes and models, etc.). You can also tell them that they can contact your insurance company or your attorney if you have already obtained one (or that you will not talk to them until after you have spoken to an attorney). Do not discuss with them what you believe caused the accident (road and weather conditions, distractions, obstructions, etc.). Do not discuss with them your thought processes immediately before or after the accident. Do not discuss with them your injuries.

Do contact an attorney, who can evaluate your case and advise you on the best course of action for your specific facts and circumstances.

 

This website includes general information about legal issues and developments in the law. Such materials are for informational purposes only and may not reflect the most current legal developments. These informational materials are not intended, and must not be taken, as legal advice on any particular set of facts or circumstances. You need to contact a lawyer for advice on specific legal issues.

 

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