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Insurance adjusters and defence lawyers alike will often attempt to prove that the injured person is not really as injured as they are claiming, and video surveillance may be used as a tool in support of this defence. Injury claimants are subject to scrutiny and it is an unfortunate reality that some injury claimants will be videoed while going about their day-to-day business after making an injury claim. Sadly, those who are most severely injured with potentially large claims are also most likely to have the insurer use video surveillance in their case.
There are several standard defences to personal injury claims that are considered by insurance adjusters and defence lawyers in every injury claim they handle. One of these standard defences is to say that you are not really as injured as you or your doctors say you are, or in some cases, to even claim that you are not really injured at all. In more serious, complicated and contentious injury cases, video surveillance is occasionally used as a tool to prove this defence. The law in BC provides that if you are in public view, and not in a place where you would expect to have privacy, this type of surveillance is permitted.
For example, it is lawful to take video of someone as they are lifting groceries out of their trunk in the grocery store parking lot, or chopping wood in their front yard. On the other hand, it is not lawful to take video of someone when they are in the privacy of their living room or within their private backyard.
It is true that when you make an injury claim, you are, to a certain extent, opening up your life to scrutiny. Medical records, employment files, and school transcripts may be disclosed and examined as part of proving your claim, but being videoed is an intrusion into privacy of an entirely different sort.
If you have an injury claim and think that you may be surveilled, the best course of action is to carry on living your life as best as your injuries allow:
The common purpose of surveillance is to capture someone doing something they said they couldn’t do. It’s important to remember that video surveillance footage is taken only in the most serious or contentious cases. Even when it is taken, it is often not used in court. This is simply because almost all people with personal injury claims are honest about their injuries and disabilities.
If you’ve been truthful with those supporting you through your injury and recovery, such as your employer, your doctors, and your lawyer, then there is little that video surveillance can capture that is likely to be damaging to your case.
We hope you have learned something from this week’s video blog. Please feel free to like us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter and subscribe to our YouTube channel to receive notice of our future weekly video blogs on the law. League and Williams is a Victoria, BC based law firm with expertise in injury law, estate disputes and marine law and may be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or phone at 250-888-0002. If you are injured and would like a free consult, give us a call for a free consult. We are here to help injured parties get the fair compensation that they are entitled to.