Does the insurance company want you to sign a medical release after your truck accident? Here’s why signing it may hurt your claim for compensation.

Should I sign the insurance company’s medical authorization release following my truck accident?

 

A:

The decisions you make when filing a claim for compensation for your injuries in a truck accident in the Seattle area are rarely easy. Even an “innocent” request that you sign the insurance company’s medical authorization release is not one you should make without the assistance of an experienced truck accident attorney. You may be surprised to learn that signing this form could cause problems in your case and lower the value of your claim.

Reasons Not to Sign a Medical Authorization Release

While it is true that the trucker’s and trucking company’s insurance company will need your medical records before settling your claim, this does not mean that you have to give them permission to get them on their own. The insurance company’s authorization is a broad release that often allows them to obtain all of your medical records. The insurance adjuster could want these records to look for grounds to raise a dispute about your injuries. Here is why you do not want to sign the release:

  • Prior medical records. The insurance company wants your medical records to look for prior complaints of an injury to the same body part injured in the truck accident—even if you never received treatment for it. They can use this information to argue that this earlier incident was the cause of your current injuries.
  • Doctors’ notes. The insurance adjuster might look at your doctors’ notes for statements you made to him that are inconsistent with other statements you made regarding your collision or your injuries. They could reduce your credibility and the value of your claim.
  • Sensitive information. Your medical records could contain private information about you that is not relevant to your claim. You do not have to give the insurance company this information to settle your case.

How Should You Properly Handle a Request for a Medical Authorization?

If you receive a request to sign a medical authorization, you should retain a skilled lawyer as soon as possible to review the document and advise the insurance company that you will not be signing it. He can obtain the medical records that are truly needed and provide them on your behalf. He can also review any other documents you will need to sign and negotiate your settlement so that you receive what you deserve. You never want to sign any documents without first having an attorney review them to ensure that your legal rights are protected.

Do you need an experienced truck accident attorney? Fill out our online form to schedule a free consultation with a member of our legal team to learn more about how we can assist you.