When you or a loved one have been injured due to another party’s negligence and decide to bring a lawsuit, the defense will often call for an independent medical exam (IME). This process involves an independent doctor or licensed healthcare professional examining the injured person and then writing an evaluation of their condition or injuries. It is wise to work with a skilled medical malpractice attorney when going through this process, as the results from IMEs can significantly impact the outcome of a lawsuit.

An IME is a critical element in many cases where a person has sustained an injury, and this examination can help prove or disprove the extent of the harm, determine damages, and validate the overall legitimacy of a claim. As a result, IMEs can contradict the injured person’s health records and opinions of their treating physicians. Consult a tenacious attorney from Lowenthal & Abrams for help navigating the impact of independent medical exams in a Philadelphia medical malpractice case.

Gathering Basic Information About an Injury

In medical malpractice cases, the injured person has the burden of proof. As a result, they must provide robust evidence supporting their claim, such as health records, photos, and expert reports. In rebuttal, a defendant or the opposing party will often request an IME to show that the harm is not as bad as the other side claims.

The person or company from the negligent party often hires the independent examiner for an IME, so they may not be truly neutral. Their reports may be biased, creating new obstacles for an injured person. For example, a negative report might suggest that the injuries are less severe, leading to a lower settlement offer or denial of the claim.

Disputing a Claim

When the report conflicts with an injured party’s health records, they may need to dispute the findings. A person bringing a claim has a right to know the doctor’s name conducting the evaluation. Refuting the evaluation can become a complex legal process, which may potentially delay the case’s resolution. It is wise to enlist the help of an experienced Philadelphia attorney who could help combat the impact of an IME.

Understanding the Possible Counterarguments

IMEs are not infallible. As such, there are many arguments that an injured person’s lawyer can use to discredit the report if it is not accurate or helpful to a case.

Limited Resources

One counterargument is that the exam professional had limited time and resources, resulting in inaccurate conclusions. There can also be an issue with the methodology they may have used during the IME, and an injured person may question whether the methods and standards the medical professional used aligned with accepted practices.

Privacy Invasion

An injured person can argue that the exam was an invasion of privacy, especially when the IME was requested prior to the patient obtaining legal counsel. While the injured party may be required to submit to an examination as part of the legal process, they may argue that the scope is overly broad, intrusive, or violates their privacy rights.

Hiring a competent Philadelphia lawyer who can advocate for an injured person and counter any IME findings in a medical malpractice lawsuit is essential.

Hire a Philadelphia Attorney To Advocate For Your IME Malpractice Case Today

The defense uses independent medical exams as a common tactic in malpractice lawsuits. Although an impartial doctor evaluates the records and examines the injured person, these exams are often not truly independent and could be biased.

Our legal team understands the impact of independent medical exams in Philadelphia medical malpractice cases and can help you navigate the legal system effectively. We are ready to advocate for you. Call us today to discuss your case during an initial consultation.


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