The Importance of Medical Records in Your Auto Accident Case
Legally Reviewed and Edited by: Terry Cochran
Under Michigan’s no-fault insurance scheme, claiming compensation for personal injuries is complicated. To successfully pursue a personal injury claim requires a great deal of experience.
One of the most important steps to take is ensuring all your accident injuries are entered into your medical records. This is vital in establishing that you have reached the threshold for bodily injury, allowing you to file a claim for economic and non-economic damages.
The personal injury attorneys at Cochran Kroll & Associates, P.C. can guide you through this process and advise you on what evidence you will need to support your claim.
Can I Claim for Personal Injury?
Michigan’s no-fault insurance does not generally permit you to sue an at-fault driver for personal injury. You are required to file a claim with your insurers, and you will receive compensation for your medical bills, loss of earnings, and other accident-related expenses.
However, there is an exception. Under MCL 500.3135, a plaintiff can file a personal injury case if they have serious impairment of body function or permanent serious disfigurement. If you can show that you were injured in an accident and your injuries meet the threshold outlined by this section, you may be eligible to file a lawsuit.
What Do I Need to Prove?
The at-fault driver’s insurance company and their claims adjuster will do everything they can to persuade the court that your injuries were pre-existing or not a direct result of the accident. You must prove that your injuries and physical impairment are directly due to the accident to win your case. Your medical records play a critical role in providing evidence of where your injuries originated and how severe they are.
To ensure your medical records prove your injuries, you need to take specific steps if you are involved in a collision:
- Notify the police. Under MCL 257.622, if a person is injured in a car accident, you must notify the police. They attend the scene and prepare a report. Make sure the police officer records all your injuries at the time.
- Tell the paramedics about all your injuries so they can record them.
- If you are taken to the emergency room, tell the healthcare professionals about all your injuries and any symptoms. They will be added to your file.
- Seek medical treatment from your primary care physician at the earliest opportunity. Your doctor’s findings will be placed in your records. If you experience new symptoms after the accident, return to your doctor for further examination to ensure the changes are recorded. These may be delayed symptoms stemming from the accident.
- Attend all your medical appointments. Attendance at therapy sessions and follow-up appointments is vital. The at-fault driver’s insurance adjuster will argue that you are not in pain if you don’t make your doctor’s appointments.
- Never speak to an auto insurance claims adjuster without an attorney present. Similarly, don’t allow them to look at the damage or sign any form of release without your attorney being present. Doing so could undermine your claim.
Contact Our Law Firm to Get Your Free Consultation
Our senior partner Eileen Kroll is a registered nurse who formerly worked in healthcare before becoming a practicing lawyer. Her unique medical background combined with extensive knowledge of personal injury law allows her to interpret your medical records to support your accident claim.
Our contingency fee basis means we only get paid if we win your case, so there is no financial risk to you to get started. Call our law firm today at 866-MICH-LAW and schedule your no-obligation, free case evaluation.
Disclaimer : The information provided is general and not for legal advice. The blogs are not intended to provide legal counsel and no attorney-client relationship is created nor intended.