Workers’ Compensation and the Independent Medical Examination

May 17, 2016

When you are injured on the job and make a claim for workers’ compensation benefits in Philadlephia, your company’s insurance company may ask you to go for an independent medical examination (IME). IME’s can greatly affect how your compensation case is handled. The reports by IME doctors can be used as evidence to establish an appropriate degree of workers’ compensation, or to try to block your claim. If you were asked to undergo an IME by your employer, here’s what you should know.

Firstly, an IME is a medical evaluation that is supposed to provide an impartial evaluation of your medical condition and proposed treatment plan. Generally, the IME is a back-check by the insurance company to make sure that your treatment follows an allowable time-scale and financial allotment.

These examinations are, in reality, used to help your employer challenge your claim to benefits. An IME may be requested right away, to challenge the initial claim, or later on if they take issue with your doctor’s treatment plan. You may be asked to submit to another IME if, at the end of your workers’ compensation claim, we file for permanent disability benefits on your behalf.

Before an IME, your medical records and injury reports will be sent to the IME doctor. These records are usually accompanied by some form of correspondence from the insurance company. You have a right to review any correspondence between the insurance company and the IME doctor, and it is a good idea to do so to correct any errors.

During an IME, your doctor will perform any necessary tests regarding your condition and will ask you relevant questions about how the injury occurred, the severity, and how it is currently affecting you. The doctor will compile a final report for the insurance company, which you also have a right to view.

Depending on the circumstances, an IME can make or break a Philadelphia workers’ compensation case. Occasionally, mistakes are made during an IME, whether because of confusion over the paperwork or incomplete information sent to the IME doctor. An IME can be challenged if you feel that the report is inaccurate or doesn’t properly reflect your circumstances.

Workers’ compensation law can be extremely complicated and confusing; it helps to have experienced counsel on your side to get you the compensation you deserve. The Philadelphia workers’ compensation attorneys of Larry Pitt & Associates can help. Please contact us to schedule your appointment. We proudly serve Berks, Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery and Philadelphia Counties.