Examination Under Oath (EUO) Preparation
EUO Preparation in Personal Injury Lawsuits
What is an EUO?
A EUO is defined as an “examination under oath” The EUO is used by insurance companies to cross-examine the person who has filed a personal injury claim to obtain information that enables the insurer to process the claim. An EUO will serve to eliminate fraud or to find basis to deny a claim. Statements are taken by the insured can be videotaped, recorded by a court reporter or both.
“As a seasoned personal injury attorney, I am rarely met with anything less than apprehension by my clients who are preparing for an examination under oath. Most of my clients have never been through a regular deposition, let alone an EUO by an insurance company whose sole intent is to find any reason to poke holes in their testimony with regards to their injury claim.”
If you need immediate help with preparation for an EUO, please call 727-824-5727. We provide our clients with EUO preparation in Pasco, Pinellas, Hernando and Citrus County, Florida.
Some of the questions I am asked regarding an EUO are as follows:
Q: Do I have to agree to attend an EUO?
A: The answer is yes. As the insured, you are almost always obligated to cooperate with any of the insurance company’s investigations of your injury claim. This includes using an EUO as it is just another tool the insurers use in their claims process. It is important for your personal injury lawyer to have experience preparing their clients for an EUO. The first step is to read the provisions of your policy which should detail your responsibility as a policyholder. If the insurer attempts to go outside the realm of those responsibilities listed, your attorney can advise you how to proceed.
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Q: Is an EUO the same as a deposition?
A: With regards to the process, yes it will feel like the same process. However, it has been distinguished by the courts as being less adversarial and more evaluation based. In other words, the courts regard the use of an Examination Under Oath as a way for the insurance company to detect fraud and obtain other information that is pertinent to the claim. In fact, the law allows for any reasonable “reach” by the insurance company in an effort to protect the insurance company from fraud.
Q: Do I need a Personal Injury Attorney for an Examination Under Oath (EUO)?
A: Yes. If you haven’t hired a personal injury attorney to represent you in your accident, injury or wrongful death claim, at this juncture, it will be extremely beneficial to do so. If the insurer denies the insured’s right to legal representation, it may bar the insurer from denying a claim on the basis of the insured’s failure to comply with its demand for an EUO. **If you have been directed by your insurance company to attend an EUO in Pasco, Hernando, Citrus, or Pinellas County, please call Wendy-Doyle-Palumbo for a free consultation or request information using the form below.
Q: If I tell the truth, why would I need an EUO Personal Injury Attorney?
A: Discovering the truth isn’t necessarily what the insurance company is looking for. They can take any answer you might phrase incorrectly and albeit innocent, attempt to use it against the insured to deny your claim. The results of this exchange can have very negative effects on your accident or injury claim. In short, clients who have been injured can be ill, in shock, or can be suffering from trauma. In other words, injury or accident victims are often already vulnerable due to their accident, wrongful death or injury. They can easily be entrapped by an insurance company during an EUO. Thus, it is my job as a personal injury attorney to protect your rights during an EUO.
Q: Will My Personal Injury Attorney ask me questions in the EUO?
A: No. Your personal injury lawyer is not permitted to be involved in the examination. However, your personal injury or EUO attorney is able to provide you with legal advice while you are being questioned under oath and will be sure that your rights are protected.
Q: What Kind of Questions Will I Be Asked?
A: This will vary from case to case but it can begin with questioning you about the information you provided when you applied for insurance. There have been cases where the insurance company may find incorrect data or information on an insurance application which can result in the insurance company canceling your policy. If they are successful in doing so, you’ll likely be provided with a refund of your premiums but you will have no claim against them for your injury or loss. Other questions may be asked about your current and past residences, employment past and present, gaps in employment, driving record, prior accidents or injuries, arrest records, drug or alcohol use, use of social media, medical history, past and present. Questions about your medical history may be asked in a way to trick the policyholder.
For example, You are asked if you have ever had an injury to your limbs prior to your accident. You answer no. But, the insurance company found a social media post from a few years back where you had stated that you had “twisted” your knee while jogging. Most people forget about these things, especially if they were not particularly troublesome and the injury didn’t require treatment. An EUO attorney will help you to prepare for questions like these.
Q: How Long Does an EUO Last?
A: By law, the insurance company can ask as many questions that are reasonable to ensure they are protected against fraud. Thus, an examination under oath can last several hours. You may also be called back for additional examinations should additional information become available to them.
Q: I Was Given a List of Documents to Bring to the EUO, Do I Have to Provide These?
A: Yes. If you have access to these documents, gather as much as you can for the EUO. In most cases, policyholders have a duty to comply. This includes providing any documentation that your insurance company has requested.
Wendy Doyle-Palumbo Personal Injury and EUO Attorney – Hudson, Florida
Wendy Doyle-Palumbo is a Personal Injury Attorney representing the injured in Pasco, Hernando, Citrus, and Pinellas County, FL. If you would like a free consultation or case evaluation with a personal injury lawyer at DMU, or if you need immediate assistance with preparing for an Examination Under Oath in a personal injury claim, please fill out the form below or call 727-824-5727.