If you have suffered a work-related injury and have filed for worker’s comp, you will need to undergo an independent medical exam with an approved doctor. However, keep in mind that the insurance company pays these doctors. As such, they may try to reduce costs for the insurance company with details you may unknowingly divulge.
Here are some things you should not say to a worker’s comp doctor to ensure this doesn’t happen:
The first thing your doctor will ask you is how you got injured, and the question will be asked multiple times to make you slip up. Avoid giving inaccurate or too many details and stick to the facts. If you cannot recall some details, leave them out rather than guessing, and do not exaggerate the incident or the pain you are in.
Exaggerations can lead to discrepancies which can hurt your chances of getting the maximum compensation for your injuries. For example, if you say that someone pushed you and CCTV footage says otherwise, it will raise questions about the legitimacy of your claim.
Your doctor will ask if you had similar injuries before the one that caused your existing ones. The information helps them determine treatment options. However, since worker’s comp insurers often use an illness or prior injuries to argue that injuries are not work-related, the chances are that you will say you were never injured or are healthy even if you aren’t.
That is a mistake. If you think anything in your medical history will affect your claim, hiding it or denying it will damage your credibility. Be upfront with the doctor to ensure it is accounted for from the beginning.
During the consultation, describe your injuries and pain to your doctors and therapists as accurately as possible. Accurate details will help them determine how both limit your job performance. These professionals see worker’s comp patients regularly and know what is required for a valid claim, and will record your statements.
This is not the time to suffer in silence. If working is agonizing because of your injuries, do not say you are fine and can continue working. Be forthright with each healthcare provider you visit about how your injuries are affecting your work. The compensation you receive may be limited otherwise or, worse, rejected.
Depending on the circumstance surrounding your injuries, you may be tempted to use some choice expletives for your employer during a medical consultation. Even if your boss reacted badly to your claim, the worst thing you can do is vent in front of your doctor.
Unlike other medical cases, there is no such thing as doctor-patient confidentiality in a worker’s compensation claim. In other words, whatever you say to the doctor will be used to gauge your credibility and temperament. If either is lacking, you may lose out and will have to pay out of pocket for your medical bills.
If your compensation has been denied by the insurance company or your employer, you can and should sue. Contact the worker’s comp lawyers in Waukegan from The Law Offices of Robert T. Edens today! We have extensive experience representing clients like you get the compensation they deserve.