When you purchase automobile insurance in the State of Florida your insurance contract will likely have contractual language obligating you to submit to an EUO (Examination Under Oath) in the event you make a claim under the policy. Although you are legally obligated to submit to this examination, it doesn’t mean you have to submit to unreasonable or abusive behavior.
Some common abusive tactics utilized by Insurance companies at EUO’s
- Attempting to intimidate the attorney by announcing that he cannot confer with his client during the EUO.
- Showing up for an EUO on one accident and attempting to have a second adjuster show up to take an unnoticed/unscheduled EUO on a second accident.
- Behaving in a rude and intimidating manner.
- Starting the EUO with a pronouncement that they are part of a special investigation unit.
The examination is similar to a deposition in that you are asked questions which are recorded. However, the EUO is different than a deposition in that the Florida Rules of Civil Procedure do not apply. Some insurance companies take the position that the EUO is their domain to control without constraint. That is simply wrong.
Here is what you deserve if you are asked to submit to an EUO:
- You deserve to have your attorney attend the EUO.
- You deserve to confer with your attorney when you are asked questions (a deposition is distinguishable in that you cannot confer with your attorney).
- You do not have to suffer the indignity of sitting through an EUO where you are treated rudely, yelled at, berated or insulted.
- You do not have to go away to some far-away location for your EUO.
- You do not have to attend a EUO on very short notice.
- You deserve a written copy of your EUO.
Florida Statute 92.33 Written statement concerning injury to person or property; furnishing copies; admission as evidence.
Every person who shall take a written statement by any injured person with respect to any accident or with respect to any injury to person or property shall, at the time of taking such statement, furnish to the person making such statement a true and complete copy thereof. Any person having taken, or having possession of any written statement or a copy of such statement, by any injured person with respect to any accident or with respect to any injury to person or property shall, at the request of the person who made such statement or his or her personal representative, furnish the person who made such statement or his or her personal representative a true and complete copy thereof. No written statement by an injured person shall be admissible in evidence or otherwise used in any manner in any civil action relating to the subject matter thereof unless it shall be made to appear that a true and complete copy thereof was furnished to the person making such statement at the time of the making thereof, or, if it shall be made to appear that thereafter a person having possession of such statement refused, upon request of the person who made the statement or his or her personal representatives, to furnish him or her a true and complete copy thereof.
You should have an attorney with you during an EUO. If you have any questions, please give the Brooks Law Group a call at 888-we-Mean-It (888-936-3264). Our practice focuses on helping the injured and wrongfully killed.