Disability insurance companies are notorious for using video surveillance in order to evaluate a claimant’s restrictions and limitations. In more than 50% of the disability insurance claim denials that we review, the disability company relies on video surveillance. With today’s technological advances it is very easy to manipulate videos. It is rare for a disability company to manipulate a video, however the investigator filming the video can be manipulative in order to obtain further work form the insurance company. The following story is surprising and something that all claimants and disability attorneys should be aware of.
A lawyer was recently in trial. During a break, the judge asked the lawyers if they knew about the latest surveillance techniques. He had apparently just finished a trial where the guy who took the surveillance used a mirror to film the Plaintiff – in other words, he filmed the mirror image. So it made it look like the Plaintiff was using the affected limb when in fact it was the other limb being used. The Plaintiff’s lawyer apparently picked up on it because the Plaintiff was filmed entering his house and the address numbers were the reverse of what they should have been.
As disability lawyers we often see video surveillance which is arbitrary. The person taking the video will often film limited activities which will make the person look better than they really are. It is often that we obtain copies of videos which fail to include events from the same day which show the claimant experiencing pain and discomfort. It is rare that we see a video that has been edited or manipulated, however we always review every video to verify its accuracy and reliability.