Most attorneys know what it is like to be ambushed by an opposing attorney with facts your own client didn’t reveal to you. It’s much different when you are armed with information that the other side doesn’t know you have. Running a Claim History Report can give you the advantage in both of these situations and should be part of your accident case Standard Operating Procedure (SOP).
What Is a Claim History Report?
A claim history report is a compilation of all claims an individual has filed for or has had filed against them. The report will show claim histories, whether the subject is the claimant or insured in each case. Insurance claims for medical and property loss are also included. The reports come strictly from insurance claim data and help you acquire the most accurate knowledge to best represent your client.
Claim History Reports On The Opposition
Running these reports on the other driver in your case lets you see if that person is just a bad driver or if they may be a vexatious litigant (a shill) who intentionally causes accidents for monetary gain.
These reports also identify situations where a Special Investigation Unit (SIU) has been involved. SIU investigations are typically conducted when the insurance company finds the claim suspicious or suspects fraud.
As always, knowledge is power. Having the information from a Claim History Report puts you in a position to ask the best questions in the deposition stage and plug holes in your case.
Claim History Reports on Your Own Client
Running a Claim History Report on the opposition seems logical. But, why should you run this report on your own client? The reason is simple; people tend to accidentally forget or intentionally withhold details. These Claim History Reports do not forget anything.
For example, your client is suing for a back injury resulting from a car accident. When you ask your client about any previous injuries, related or not, they:
- May not remember.
- May not equate a previous injury with this one.
- Don’t want to tell you for fear of damaging their case.
While it seems odd that people wouldn’t remember an injury, it happens. Concerning the second case, they may have hurt themselves on the job and not think that a work-related injury is relevant to their auto accident injury. Finally, they may hope a previous injury won’t come to light if they don’t mention it, and therefore won’t negatively impact their chances for a better settlement.
The Claim History Report can also provide insight into your client’s other claims such as worker’s comp case . Knowing about a previous injury prepares you to introduce the information to disarm the opposition’s attempt to reveal it in a more damaging way.
Identify the Deep Pockets
Another part of your Case SOP should be identification of all the deep pockets in a case. Discovering these compensation sources enables you to obtain a maximum settlement for your client. How do Claim History Reports help this effort? They can identify other insurance coverages that may be tapped, especially when the other driver was driving for work.
For example, if the other driver had been previously involved in an accident while driving a company vehicle or while driving their own vehicle in the scope of their employment, that information will be contained in the report. Knowing this fact enables you to question them about the vehicle they were driving at the time of the accident. If your current case again involves a company vehicle, you may be able to add the company to your case.
Also, the Claim History Report may show that the other driver’s personal vehicle was involved in your client’s accident. If a Worker’s Comp case was filed on the same day it may indicate that the vehicle was being used in an employment capacity, which may point to the client or other additional deep pockets.
Rely on Glucroft Investigations for Your Claim History Reports
There are many reasons to run claim history reports as part of your Case SOP. Obtaining a Claim History Report is a great way to build a case that will mitigate the ability of the other party to poke holes in your strategy or blindside you some other way. It is also an excellent means of improving your client’s memory. Let Glucroft Investigations take over this task while you focus on other preparations. Contact us online or call us at 866-411-8646. At Glucroft Investigations, We Uncover The Hidden.