Whether you’ve been involved in a pedestrian accident, a car wreck, you’ve suffered a slip and fall injury, or you’ve been hurt in any other kind of accident, you’re going to deal with a lot of complexities. The insurance company you’re dealing with will try to deny you the compensation you deserve. And you can be sure that they’ll make life difficult for as long as they can.
One of the more complicated aspects of a personal injury case is a concept known as maximum medical improvement. As you’ll learn, it basically means you’re at a point where no additional treatment is going to improve your condition. Insurers might claim you’ve reached this point to get out of having to pay you for ongoing medical costs.
At The Eberst Law Firm, we know the tricks insurance companies like to use in order to pay as little money as they possibly can to accident victims. But we also know how to defeat those tactics. If you choose us to represent you, we’ll fight for your rights so you can get the money you have coming. Contact us online or call 1-888-CALL-JON for a free case review.
Here some information on maximum medical improvement, and how it could affect your case.
What is Maximum Medical Improvement?
The name basically says it all. Maximum medical improvement (MMI) means you’ve reached a level of recovery where further treatment won’t help you improve any further. You might, for example, progress from a traumatic brain injury to the point to where no type of treatment will improve your condition.
In a lot of cases, MMI means someone has reached a full recovery. Since they’ve fully healed from their injury, they no longer require any sort of medical care. They won’t be entitled to any money for future medical expenses as a result.
But there are other instances where a full recovery back to normal isn’t possible. Such as when someone has suffered a severe spinal cord injury that led to paralysis. Even though further treatment might not mean they’ll be able to walk again, treatment could help improve their quality of life. They may, in fact, need a lifetime of medical care.
How is Maximum Medical Improvement Determined?
Say, for instance, someone has suffered a permanent injury due to a car accident. The doctor who is treating that person will determine whether or not they’ve reached MMI. In this instance, the victim may need to consider getting multiple medical opinions. This is because that could affect the value of their case.
If you’re seeking compensation through a PIP (personal injury protection) insurance policy, your carrier may require you to undergo an independent medical exam from another doctor. But even if that doctor says you’ve reached MMI, that doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll have to give up hope of getting compensation for ongoing care. Just because that doctor says you’re at MMI, that doesn’t mean that designation is valid. After all, that doctor isn’t the one who has been treating you.
Also, just because this is a so-called “independent” medical exam, that might not actually be the case. The insurance company has contracted with that doctor. So how can you trust what he or she says? That doctor could easily be biased toward the insurance company. If so, they may downplay the seriousness of your condition as a result.
Can Refusing Medical Treatment Effect MMI Designation?
Some accident victims get tired of having to go to the doctor. And for good reason. They just want to get on with their lives without dealing with the distraction of taking time out of their day for yet another medical appointment. But as understandable as that sentiment may be, it could have a profound impact on their ability to obtain compensation in their personal injury case.
Let’s suppose your doctor has prescribed physical therapy for the back injury you suffered in a bicycle accident. You don’t want to go to any more appointments, because you think your condition is as good as it’s going to get. Your doctor won’t be able to give you an MMI designation, because there’s a chance that you could get better with further therapy. The insurance company could also use your choice not to get further treatment against you.
Why it’s Important to Reach Maximum Medical Improvement
Getting immediate medical attention is always critical, regardless of the type of accident that has caused you harm. If you don’t, that could make it a lot harder to get the compensation you have coming to you.
Why is this the case? In order to demand compensation from the negligent party that caused the accident, your attorney will need to know the total amount of your damages, or losses, such as medical bills. If no one knows how long it will take to treat your injuries, your attorney won’t have an accurate picture of your past and future medical expenses. That will make it hard to send a demand letter to the negligent party’s insurance company.
By getting the treatment you need and reaching MMI, you’ll have a much better chance of obtaining the full value of what your claim is worth. Obviously, it will also help your physical health. And it will help you get back to normal as fast as possible.
Contact The Eberst Law Firm to Discuss Your Personal Injury Claim
If you have any reason to believe you’re not being treated fairly by the insurance company involved in your case, get in touch with The Eberst Law Firm as soon as you can. Our skilled, experienced attorneys have a long track record of success in personal injury cases. We’ll do everything we can to help you get what you deserve.
There are lots of different kinds of damages involved in this kind of case, including not only medical bills and lost wages, but also pain and suffering and others. Our attorneys will work to help you recover all of the damages to which you’re entitled. Contact us online or call 1-888-CALL-JON for a free case review.