The Importance of Medical Records
It sometimes seems like insurance adjusters are never satisfied with a personal injury claim. You might find that the adjuster for your personal injury claim is constantly requesting more and more documentation of things than they should realistically need. This is often used as a stalling or negotiation tactic to try to get you and your Jacksonville accident injury attorney to reduce your settlement demand.
As part of your personal injury claim, your attorney will send the adjuster copies of your medical bills, medical reports and loss of income information. This is standard procedure, and is often sufficient information for the adjuster, or at least enough to move to the next stage. If this proves insufficient, your attorney might try to force their hand and ask for an official settlement offer before agreeing to send over additional materials. If the adjuster still refuses, your Jacksonville personal injury lawyer might send them the message that the information they want can be obtained as part of discovery after you file your lawsuit.
Digging Deep: When Prior Medical Records Are Requested
Many insurance carriers, especially large conservative ones, will request all of a claimant’s medical records for the five or ten-year period prior to the incident pertaining to the claim. Gathering and collecting all of these records from all of your medical care providers is usually untenable and significantly expensive, which will serve only to delay settlement. If this happens, your attorney might respond in a few ways.
If you have no prior injuries to the area of your current injury and no substantial medical history, then your attorney might invite the insurance company to obtain all the medical records for the five or ten-year history, knowing full well the records will not show anything damaging to your case. It will also be relatively inexpensive and quick to obtain the necessary records if you do not have a substantial medical history.
By contrast, if you have had prior injuries to that area, it is better to let the insurance carrier know. Telling them beforehand of a pre-existing condition increases your credibility.
If you have more questions about how to deal with insurance company demands in your personal injury claim, contact Jacksonville accident injury attorney John Fagan at 904-278-1000.