Once the victim that has been injured in an accident has chosen to sue the negligent party, the insurance company for that same individual has the right to schedule an independent medical examination. Insurers seek proof of the victim’s claims. Victims that adhere to the following strategy have the best chance for demonstrating the true nature of their injuries, during that IME (independent medical examination).
Actions to be taken by the person that will be examined
Relax and share all the information that has been made available, in relation to the diagnosis of and the prognosis of the injury that actually triggered the filed lawsuit. Show up at the scheduled time; do not keep the physician waiting.
Try to complete all of the tests that have been requested by the examining physician. If a test triggers a sensation of pain, make that fact known, and do not hesitate to decline to take the test. Be sure the let the doctor know about any pains suffered during any part of the examination.
Do not attend the examination alone, unaccompanied by a friend or family member. That way, a 3rd party can witness what takes place. Furthermore, find out ahead of time, if it is possible to videotape the examination. Canadian law allows that to take place, in certain cases.
The memory of the examined victim should not be trusted. That same person should sit down and record what took place, soon after the examination has been completed.
Proceed with caution, if asked to sign any piece of paper. The victim’s signature should not be needed by the examining doctor. The insurance company might try to obtain a signature on an unrelated document.
The person that is being examined should not feel compelled to answer any questions that he or she does not understand. The doctor should not force the person being examined to answer every question. It is best for the accident victim to discuss these details with a personal injury lawyer in Edmonton before taking the tests.
What happens after the examination?
The doctor’s observation of the patient/victim does not stop when he or she gets off the table. The doctor watches for evidence of pain or discomfort, in the examined victim. Such evidence might appear as the same victim walks out of the room.
The insurance company hopes that the doctor will say that the patient is ready to return to work. Still, a victim can challenge the doctor’s opinion. If the examination was scheduled by an employer’s insurer, the employer may support a reasonable challenge.
A reasonable challenge could come from a victim with an obvious injury, but one that the examining doctor chose to ignore. That could be pointed to as an act of bad faith. Thus, the examined employee/victim would have a sound reason for challenging the doctor’s findings.