Independent Medical Examinations or Insurance Medical Examinations?

medical examination

If you have been injured in an accident, your treating doctor should be able to provide an initial exam of your injuries. However, an insurance company may require that you undergo what is claimed to be an independent medical exam (IME). This appointment is set up by the defense lawyer at the request of the insurance company. Keep in mind, neither of those parties want you to win your case.

How Does an IME Get Scheduled?

How this typically works is the defense lawyer will have a third-party company hire an IME doctor. Then, the defense lawyer will bill the insurance company to pay the third-party company, which pays the doctor. Both the defense lawyer and the insurance company want this doctor to contradict the findings made by your treating doctors and minimize injuries. If the IME doctor downplays a person’s injuries, the defense will be in a stronger position and the insurance company will have more bargaining power. IMEs typically amount to a scare tactic and a form of reverse insurance fraud that happens every day to personal injury victims.

Do I Have to Go to an IME?

Yes. Under New York State law, a party is entitled to full disclosure of all contested issues in the litigation. While everyone has HIPAA rights to privacy, once you commence a personal injury action you put your body in contention. Therefore, a defense lawyer is entitled to have a doctor who they choose to examine you.

If you fail to appear at an IME, your case could be dismissed. While it is unlikely to happen the first time, if you miss more than one IME your case will likely be dismissed. You may also have to pay for a missed IME, even if it’s the first time.

Basch & Keegan is Here to Help

Luckily, once you retain Basch & Keegan Personal Injury Attorneys, we will stand up to the insurance companies. We know how to undermine deceptive IME reports. We not only rely on treating doctors, but also utilize medical experts who tell the truth about your injuries. We dispute any ridiculous IME reports and make sure your rights are protected. If your case goes to trial, we will ensure the facts are revealed and the jury knows the truth about your injuries. The insurance company scare tactics don’t work on Basch & Keegan. Call us today at 845-338-8884 for a free consultation.