Do I Have to Give the Insurance Adjuster My Social Security Number?
Personal injury clients of the Law Offices of Mark P. Jones in Columbus Georgia often inquire about privacy issues concerning their case. In particular, oftentimes prior to retaining Lawyer Mark Jones, the insurance adjuster insists on the client disclosing his/her social security number, often stating that this disclosure is required under Federal Law.
This is simply not true. Nothing in the law requires disclosure of your social security number to the insurance company. What the adjuster is really concerned about is the Medicare Secondary Payer Act. 42 U.S.C.§ 1395y et seq.
Under that act, there are reporting requirements whereby the insurance company must report to Medicare whether someone is a Medicare beneficiary so that Medicare can recoup costs from no-fault or liability settlements where a third-party has injured a Medicare beneficiary or is otherwise “on the hook” for injuring a Medicare beneficiary. The simplest way to confirm this is with your social security number.
However, the Medicare Secondary Payer Act does not require an individual to disclose his/her social security number to the insurance company. See the following Memo issued by CMS.
Practically speaking though, most adjusters will simply insist on disclosure. It’s the old golden rule to them, “he who has the gold makes the rules.” Unless you have some inherent paranoia, there really is little harm in disclosing your social security number to the insurance company….except that the insurance company almost certainly uses it to monitor your insurance claim history. See, e.g. the claims bureau index. Lawyer Mark Jones actively practices in the area of personal injury and can advise you regarding this important issue in your personal injury case. Please call 706-225-2555 or toll free at 866-521-MARK today for a free consultation regarding your legal issue.
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