What does it mean when the insurance company sets you up to see one of their doctors for your work injury?

In Illinois it is usually not good news.

This is called an independent medical exam.

However, the doctor is picked by and paid for by the Workers’ Compensation insurance company.

This doctor will not become your treating doctor.

The purpose of the exam is to give the doctor information to write a report.

The report will provide his opinion of your diagnosis, whether your condition is related to your work injury, the treatment you may need, and any restrictions you may have.

The insurance company usually sets up these exams when they think you should be done with medical treatment or when they think you should go back to work.

Many of the doctors they use have a harsh view of injured workers and a very conservative slant toward the extent of a work place injury.

The exams can be harmful for the injured worker when the doctor says no more treatment is needed, or you should be able to work without restrictions.

This often results in Workers’ Compensation stopping your checks or your medical treatment.

There really is no way to avoid the independent medical exam. Pursuant to Illinois law if you do not attend the exam all benefits may be cut off and it is very difficult to get them started again.

It is important to remember that the doctor is not your treating doctor and any information gained in the exam may be used against you in court.

Questions about your work injury? Feel free to contact Illinois Workers’ Compensation Lawyer Dirk May at 309-827-4371.

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