What is an Examination Under Oath?
An Examination Under Oath is several hours of being interrogated by an insurance company lawyer.
An Examination Under Oath (sometimes called an “EUO”) is a formal process required by most insurance policies, where the insurance company hires a lawyer to ask you questions under oath. Everything you say during the Examination is typed up by a court reporter. If there is more than one insured (like a husband and wife, or business partners), the EUO clause in the insurance policy doesn’t let them sit in on each other’s examinations. Usually requests for Examinations Under Oath come with requests for lots of documents.
What is an Examination Under Oath used for?
After the Examination Under Oath, the insurance company will use your words to decide whether to deny or pay your claim.
Examinations Under Oath can be intimidating, and insurance companies sometimes use them to delay claims or scare people into dropping their claims. Even in the best case, if the insurance company asked for an EUO, it means the insurance company is thinking about denying the claim, and is looking to confirm whether it can deny.
But Examinations Under Oath also present you with an opportunity to tell your story so the insurance company understands what happened and why they should pay you for your insurance claim.
Beyond what the insurance company decides to do with your claim, your Examination Under Oath testimony can also be used in any lawsuit you bring against the insurance company for denying your claim or not paying enough for your loss. If a question is misunderstood, or if you give an imprecise answer, that can come back and haunt you down the road.
It’s very difficult to get out of an EUO. Courts have held that people who skip an Examination can have their claim denied. So if you’ve got to undergo questioning, it’s very important to understand the issues and prepare for the examination under oath.
Call a lawyer before your Examination Under Oath
We help clients through the Examination Under Oath process. We meet with clients, help them understand why their insurance company has demanded the Examination, and go over the likely questions that may be asked so they can gather information and be prepared to answer. We also attend the Examination with clients and help deal with the insurance company throughout the process.
If you’ve received a letter demanding an Examination Under Oath and want to talk about your options, please give us a call.