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Independent Medical Exam

Definition - What does Independent Medical Exam mean?

Individuals who are injured due the negligence of another person should seek medical treatment immediately. In some cases, due to the perceived bias of a patient's own medical doctor, the insurance company may request an independent medical examination. The independent medical examiner can provide information about the extent of the patient's injuries, confirm they are as serious as previously suspected, and make sure the injuries are due to the negligence of the defendant.

Do I have to go to an independent medical examination?

State laws vary, but in some cases you may be required to submit to an independent medical examination. There are, however, certain requirements the insurance company must meet. For example, if the defendant's insurance company has asked you to see an independent medical examiner they must provide adequate notice, a convenient location, and information about the scope of the review. They also must give a reason for the examination, pay for the exam, and if necessary, make the IME available for cross examination if the personal injury case goes to trial.

What do I do before the independent medical examination?

It is important to be prepared for the medical examination. This includes bringing all relevant medical information to the exam, being on time, and discussing your case and the exam with an injury lawyer. Information offered to the independent medical examiner should be truthful, but you are not required to provide more information than necessary.

At the conclusion of the independent medical examination a report is presented to all parties for review. The IME is required to review all of the claimant's medical information as well as provide information about their injuries. They must also submit a summary of their findings from the examination, including detailed information about their diagnosis.

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