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Watch Out if You’re Asked to Sign a Blanket Medical Authorization


Let’s say that you have made the somewhat poor decision to represent yourself after an accident. Everything seems to be going well; the insurance company is even saying they may want to offer to settle your case. All they need is a blanket medical authorization.

Do You Sign?

This sounds fair—after all, you’re really injured, and you want the insurance company or defense to see how injured you are, and that’s what your medical records will show. But what you don’t know is that by providing a blanket medical authorization, you are actually giving the insurance company the tools they need to lower your settlement offer, or worse, to deny you any settlement offer at all.

Your mistake was that you assumed the authorization was just related to injuries sustained in the accident. But in fact, you gave the defendant permission to access all of your medical records, from any doctor that you have ever seen, for any purpose, going back years into the past.

How They’ll Use Your Records

When the insurance company gets your records, they will parse through them to find any prior (previous to the accident) complaint, problem, or medical issue that you may have had, and they will use that information to argue that your injuries are not caused by this accident, but they pre-existed the accident.

So, imagine your lower back hurts after this accident. But 5 years ago, you told your doctor that your back hurt after you played basketball. Even though your back has long since healed, and felt fine previous to your accident, the insurance company now has the ammunition it needs to lower your settlement offer.

Most of us may not even remember everything we’ve ever said to doctors. Even if you just made a side comment, or a casual comment to a doctor like “My back’s been hurting me but I’ll be fine” to a doctor 8 years ago, suddenly, the other side knows about it, and will make a very big deal of it.

This is, of course, in addition to the privacy problems in letting a defendant or insurance company know about every single medical problem or complaint that you’ve had in the prior years. That includes mental health, mental health counseling or therapy, or personal intimate medical issues that you may have had.

No Legal Requirement to Sign

You never had to actually do this; there is no legal requirement that you give the insurance company a blanket medical authorization before a lawsuit is actually filed, although they will falsely tell you that they cannot evaluate your case without it.

You can still recover damages in an injury lawsuit, even if your injury did exist, to some extent, before your accident. But why give the other side the ammunition they need to lower the value of your case, and allow them to fight you about something they otherwise may not have known about?

Don’t make mistakes that people without a personal injury attorney in Las Vegas. Call us for help today and for a free consultation. Contact the personal injury lawyers at Cameron Law today at 702-745-4545.


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