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How Do I Know If My Disability Company Is Conducting Video Surveillance of Me?

Attorney Gregory DellAuthor: Attorney Gregory Dell

I always tell my clients that they should assume at all times that they are under video surveillance by their disability insurance company. On a daily basis I receive calls from disability claimants that think they are being followed by an investigator. I always tell these claimants that they should immediately call the police and report the situation. According to most state laws, a licensed private investigator is required to notify the local police department that they will be conducting video surveillance. Unfortunately, some of these investigators do not comply with local laws. The second thing to do if you suspect you are being recorded or followed is to immediately call your disability carrier and ask them if they are currently conducting surveillance on you. You should also send a letter stating that you think someone is following you and you want to know if the company hired someone to follow you.

PenVideoCameraVideo camera technology has improved tremendously in recent years and investigators are using video cameras that look like a pen or glasses. Discrete video cameras are also mounted on rear view mirrors in cars. We are seeing video surveillance films where the investigator is walking directly behind the claimant for 10 minutes at a time. VideoGlassesAs I have stated numerous times, video surveillance is rarely going to be a problem for a claimant, unless the claimant is seen doing something that he or she has told the disability company they cannot do. Video surveillance of disability claimants continues to be the number one reason to support a disability claim denial.

Our disability insurance lawyers regularly help disability claimants to manage all aspects of their claim for disability insurance benefits. We always offer a free consultation to discuss your claim. We welcome you to post a comment on our website to share your experience with video surveillance in your disability insurance claim.

There are 14 opinions so far. Add your comment below.

Flint:

When does surveillance become harassment? Our neighbors are complaining and the private investigators hired by Mutual of Omaha do not register with or notify the local law enforcement.

TJ:

I cannot for the life of me find anything in my Liberty LTD policy that states I must pay them back SSDI award. I have read it several times. I just don’t see it. They tried to get me to sign something awhile back but I didn’t.
I called my old Employer and they knew nothing about paybacks and this was the benefits dept. Not sure how to proceed.

Attorney Stephen Jessup:

TJ, the policy provision will be identified usually as “Other Income Benefits” that offset your policy.

TJ:

Stephen
Do these companies ever negotiate a lower amount? I was the one that went thru hell to get this approved. What if I don’t pay? Thanks for your help. I honestly cannot believe these policies.

TJ:

Can they withhold part of the $6000 atty fees stating it took too long to get a decision? It wasn’t my fault.
Every dollar I desperately need. The judge said the insurance company pays that fee. THANKS

Attorney Stephen Jessup:

TJ, I have yet to see an insurance company negotiate a lower repayment amount.

Attorney Stephen Jessup:

TJ, they cannot withhold the amount designated as payment to your attorney by the SSA.

TJ:

Stephen
What do I do if the insurance company is (on atty. fees)?
Thanks. TJ

TJ:

Sorry for another message….how do I negotiate $200/mo that is left on the policy? Can I hire an attorney to do that for me?

Attorney Stephen Jessup:

TJ, definitely. Please feel free to contact our office to discuss how we can assist you in trying to secure a lump sum buyout.

Audrey:

You are recommending that if you feel you are being followed to call you insurance company and ask, but do they legally have to answer? I have a 17 year old girl, I hope they are not allowed to follow her?

Attorney Stephen Jessup:

Audrey, you can certainly inquire- but they have no legal duty that I am aware of to answer one way or another. Surveillance is conducted on the insured- they would have no reason or basis to follow anyone but you.

JB:

Does an insurance company have to answer honestly when you ask them if they’ve been following/surveilling you?

This past week, I’ve had two instances at the same grocery store where men were tracking me, while on their phones. The second time, another woman noticed it and thought it was incredibly suspicious. After reading several articles on your blog and thinking through courses of action, I called my insurance company to ask them and let them know that I would be going to the police to file a report. Though I know they don’t have to tell me, are they allowed to lie?

Twelve years ago, I was also followed by them but that time it was when I was driving. A man in a white van was riding up on sidewalks, running red lights, swerving in and out of traffic to tail me…it was frightening. However, when I called to ask, the analyst told me she was unable to tell me…which basically confirmed what I already knew. Just wondering if she had a different approach, felt bad for me (I was rather upset when I called) or if the rules have changed. Honestly, I’m tired of living like this. Especially when I have done nothing wrong but been dealt the hand of bad health. Thank you for any input you can provide.

Attorney Cesar Gavidia:

JB, if a disability insurer lies to you regarding surveillance being conducted on you, or if they lie to you regarding any matter, I believe that it would certainly call into question their claims handling practices and conduct. You could file a complaint with your state department of insurance to investigate and determine whether their conduct violated any state insurance laws or laws concerning good faith business practices.

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