Here are four easy steps to help you get a fair medical assessment by doctors hired by an insurance company in your Ottawa accident case.
- Be very clear during the medical assessment about what your pain is in terms of how you describe it to the medical assessor. Use words like sharp, throbbing, dull, aching, constant, intermittent etc. Think about how you are going to explain what aggravates your pain and what soothes it. Organizing your thoughts and how you will express yourself before the examination is important.
- Relatedly, if you are used to being asked to rate your pain on the pain scale (i.e. out of 10), try to be consistent from assessment to assessment.
- Respond truthfully to all questions. Do not deny prior injuries, prior accidents or past psychological treatment. If you were having stress at work before the accident, it is likely documented somewhere. Concealing it if asked will only look like you are being untruthful.
- Email your Ottawa accident lawyer immediately after the assessment to describe the actual physical examination, including how long it took. If there are any questions that strike you as odd, mention that to your lawyer as well.
- Keep in mind that the medical assessor or his / her staff will watch you out the window before the appointment. They will watch you in the waiting room. They will compare how you are in the parking lot and waiting room to how you are during the examination to try to detect symptom magnification. A classic sentence in a medical assessment report describes how the plaintiff’s movements were “guarded” in the assessment room, but that the plaintiff moved freely in the waiting room. That is insurance company “code” for: this plaintiff is exagerating.
Apart from these pointers, every assessment is different so it is hard to predict how it will unfold. Being truthful but not minimizing for symptoms are the key to success.
If you have a serious motor vehicle accident case and would like to discuss your case with a lawyer, call the personal injury lawyers at Auger Hollingsworth. 613 860-4529. We will visit you at home or in the hospital. We offer phone consultations as well.