Is the workers’ compensation insurer allowed to put me under surveillance? The short answer is YES.
The workers’ compensation insurer relies upon information that you give them and your doctor about your level of activity following a workplace injury. If the insurance company believes you are not being honest, or you may be under reporting your level of activity, they will put you under surveillance.
When Will You Be Put Under Surveillance?
For example: if you tell your doctor that you have severe back pain and you are not able to go shopping and the insurer gets surveillance footage of you at the supermarket bending or pushing the shopping trolley, or lifting large bags of shopping into your car, you are likely to find yourself fighting to keep your workers’ compensation payments.
Once the workers’ compensation insurer has those pictures of you they are likely to start investigating any social media sites to find other evidence that you have a greater level of activity than you are reporting to them and your doctor.
Obviously, having your workers’ compensation payments stopped will have serious financial consequences for you and your family. The more serious consequences are being ordered to repay some or all of the compensation payments or being charged with fraud.
Places Where You May Be Under Surveillance
You are most likely to be observed and put under surveillance when you attend an appointment with a doctor which has been arranged by the insurer. In one instance the insurer provided our office with surveillance of a client moving normally, and then pulling a crutch from the boot of the car when arriving at their doctors appointment.
What You Should Do
You cannot stop the insurance company from putting you under surveillance, but you can reduce the chances of the surveillance being used to defeat your claim. Follow these tips to remain compliant:
- Be honest. Don’t exaggerate your symptoms or level of activity to your doctor or the workers’ compensation insurer.
- Follow your doctor’s recommendations. If you follow your doctor’s advice then surveillance evidence cannot hurt your case.
- Don’t approach the surveillance operative. If you think an investigator has you under surveillance, don’t confront them or interact with them.
- Call Perth City Legal. If you think you are under surveillance, talk to one of our workers’ compensation lawyers about how you can minimise the impact of surveillance footage.
Contact Perth City Legal Today
Perth City Legal have over 18 years experience helping Perth employees with their Workers’ Compensation claims. If you have made a claim, or think your workers’ compensation insurer has you under surveillance, speak to our expert lawyers today, for confidential, accurate legal advice.
You may also like to read some of our other articles, on common Workers’ Compensation issues in Perth here.