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Independent Medical Examinations - What To Do When Your Insurance Company Orders An Adverse Exam

When you are injured in a car accident in Minnesota, the No Fault Provision of your car insurance typically covers your medical bills. But what happens when the insurance company decides to stop paying, and schedules a medical examination? In Minnesota, the provisions of your No Fault insurance require that you be examined by a doctor hired by them. The cost of this examination is paid by your No Fault insurance provider. You must keep the appointment, and if you are unable to keep it, it is important to reschedule as soon as possible otherwise you will be charged with a cancellation fee. Be as cooperative as you can, but remember that the doctor is not examining you so that he can treat your injuries. He is examining you so that he may determine if your No Fault provider will continue to pay for your medical treatment.
Be sure to tell the truth. This is the best thing for your case. Tell the examining doctor all about the pain, discomfort and suffering that you have experienced as a result of the accident and your injuries. If you do not tell the doctor about any of your injuries and restrictions, he will not include them in his report. Do not sign any papers or documents. Do not give the examining doctor any information about the accident itself, except that it occurred. Advise the doctor to call your lawyer if he or she requires more information regarding the accident. If the examining doctor asks you what other doctors have said about your condition, answer in a very general way. Be very careful about repeating what other doctors have told you. Do not allow any laboratory tests, puncturing of the skin or taking of blood or urine. You may submit to x-rays, if you wish. If you do not wish to submit to the x-rays, contact your attorney
Do not volunteer information about past accidents, medical history or previous claims. If they ask, answer in a concise manner. Do not permit more than one doctor to examine you. Be observant regarding the doctor’s examination of you. Take note of everything the doctor says from the time you arrive at the doctor’s office, including the time spent in the waiting room, the time spent on the history of your case and the exact time spent by the doctor examining you. Remember that the doctor’s examination begins as soon as you enter his office. The doctor will be watching you from the time you come into the office. He will watch you take off your coat, watch how you walk around the room and watch how you get on and off the examining table. He may try to distract you. He may, for example, point to something on your arm to see how you react and to check your range of motion. It is impossible to fool the doctor. You should be honest about your injuries and problems.
Wear a watch to your examination. The doctor will probably spend part of the time reviewing your medical records and questioning you. It is important to remember what the time was when you first saw the doctor, when the doctor began asking you questions, the time the doctor began your physical examination and the time the examination concluded. If the doctor takes part of your examination time recording your history and his findings, remember the time that this took. After the examination is over, write down those exact times and the amount of time the doctor spent on doing these things, which may turn out to be important in your case. Although, the doctor may later testify as to his opinions, it may be that his opinions will be based upon only a few minutes of actual physical examination.
Some doctors frequently request psychological tests to be completed during adverse examinations. A test like this may not be fair or relevant to your case, or even valid. Do not submit any answer on this psychological testing at the time of the examination. You should contact your lawyer if the doctor makes a request to you about this.
In sum, try to be as explicit and concise about your injuries as possible. Remember, this doctor is paid by the insurance company with the purpose of determining whether the insurance company should continue to pay your medical bills. Be honest and try to keep a mental note of exactly what happened. Only take notes after the examination. Do not work on the report at the doctor’s office or even let the doctor know that you are completing such a report. This may cause the doctor to spend an excessive amount of time performing his/her duties and would not be what he/she would normally do.
This article should not be considered legal advice. It is provided as a public service.
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