Examinations Under Oath
Updated: Jul 8, 2020
The Mayer, Graff & Wallace, LLP team explain what an Examination Under Oath is and Wisconsin's law regarding an EUO.
An examination under oath (“EUO”) is a procedure where an insurance company requires a person filing an insurance claim to submit to questioning about the claim. An EUO is usually requested because the insurance company believes there are suspicious circumstances involved with the insurance claim, whether that is actually true or not. Unfortunately, insurance companies also commonly use information obtained from an EUO as a reason to deny a claim.
During an EUO, an attorney for the insurance company may ask you many questions about your personal background, your work history, education history, family history, and the people you associate with. Specific questions may be asked about the insurance claim, such as your knowledge of what happened, where you were that day, who you were with, and where your family members were. Other questions may be asked, and an EUO may last many hours.
Most insurance policies have language that says a person making a claim must agree to do an EUO when requested by the insurance company. Wisconsin courts generally require a person to submit to an EUO in order to get benefits from the policy. A person who refuses to do an EUO may not be able to get policy benefits later on. The statements a person provides in an EUO may be used in a court of law and there can be serious consequences for lying or not telling the truth. That being said, everything an insurance company does comes back to its duty to honor its agreement with you in good faith, which means only taking actions like EUOs for the right reasons.
An EUO should not be taken lightly because it can have significant consequences for your insurance claim. While you usually cannot avoid doing an EUO, you CAN have a lawyer present with you. Having a lawyer is even more important because the insurance company can require you to do an EUO by yourself without your spouse or family members present. Some lawyers for insurance companies will try to harass or badger you to give testimony that will hurt your claim. That is to be avoided at all costs.
The Mayer, Graff & Wallace attorneys are experienced in representing individuals who may be required to do an EUO and can help protect your interests. They are also experienced in all phases of fighting an insurance claim denial or underpayment, even after an EUO is conducted. Contact the MGW attorneys today for a free consultation.