What is an Independent Medical Examination?

An Independent Medical Examination (IME) is, as its name suggests, a medical exam undertaken by a neutral, third-party physician. This type of examination comes into play in personal injury cases, especially when the issue of workers’ compensation is activated. Any evaluation made by a doctor after a workplace injury should cover the extent of the patient’s injuries, medical care needed, and overall prognosis of the patient (including any temporary or permanent disabilities).

When Would an IME Be Ordered?

Whenever your employer’s insurance company disagrees with any conclusions reached by your original treating physician, you will likely be requested to undergo an IME. Occasionally, the judge might order the IME to settle a dispute. Conversely, claimants in personal injury cases may request an IME if they disagree with the conclusions reached by the treating physician. 

How Does an IME Affect Workers’ Compensation Cases?

Doctors who perform IMEs are usually given a great amount of deference in personal injury cases; courts often see these physicians as “experts.” Therefore, if the IME doctor reaches the conclusion that your injury will not significantly impede your ability to work (in conflict with your treating doctor’s opinion), your settlement will reflect this opinion. You should receive a report after the IME summarizing the doctor’s findings. You and your attorney should carefully scrutinize this report and, if needed, compose a strategy for challenging the findings. 

What’s Next?

If the insurance company representing the defendant in a personal injury case has requested an IME, you need to understand that that physician is motivated to net the insurance company as much money as possible by minimizing the payout. This is true in a variety of workers’ compensation cases, including claims that fall under the Defense Base Act. For that reason and many others, it is imperative to get in touch with an experienced personal injury attorney. 

The team at The Bagneris Firm is skilled and experienced in getting the most out of personal injury cases for our clients, and we would be honored to do the same for you. Please reach out to us through our website or call at 504-810-3995 to get started with a free consultation.

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Bagneris Law Firm

The Bagneris Firm is an experienced civil litigation firm with decades of combined experience serving both plaintiffs and defendants in a wide-range of different cases including personal injury and business disputes. Our firm is based out of New Orleans, and we serve clients throughout Louisiana. Attorneys Emile and Suzette Bagneris have a long and impressive careers with experience training insurance adjusters and risk managers, representing large corporations and insurance companies, and helping individuals and businesses with all aspects of their legal cases. The fact that we have represented clients on all sides of legal issues allows us to better predict what will happen and prepare an effective strategy to help our clients.

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