You’ve been in a car accident. You’ve been injured, you’ve sought medical attention, kept all pertinent records, and stayed organized and on top of things. All this, despite the chaotic and traumatic nature of car accidents that leave us a little dazed in the aftermath. Through it all, you’ve kept good communication with your own insurance company. One day, they ask for a medical authorization release to take a look at the treatment you’ve received.
This is important: do not provide authorization.
“Why?” you might ask. “It’s my own insurance company.” That may be true, but there’s nothing certain about car accidents and insurance benefits until all claims are resolved. Technically, the at-fault driver’s insurance will provide compensation for medical treatment and car repairs, but if there’s no clear fault assigned, both drivers’ insurance companies will limit their liability as much as possible.
That’s where your medical records come in. Here’s the key thing to remember about medical authorization releases: unless otherwise stated, they provide total access to your medical history. If you have any part of your medical history that insurance companies could use to argue against you, then your claim may be devalued and you’ll lose your ability to collect all of your benefits.
For example, if you suffered a neck injury in your crash, that could result in substantial compensation for you: physical therapy, chiropractic care, rehabilitative items like neck supports, etc. However, if your insurance company finds that you had a neck sprain a year or two prior to your accident, even if it doesn’t factor into the crash, they may use the information to lower your benefits.
HOW HAVING AN ATTORNEY CAN HELP YOU
It is possible to provide a partial release that only provides adjusters with the records that have to do with your car accident and nothing more. However, doing so requires an understanding of the medical records and insurance systems. Otherwise, you run the risk of opening yourself up to a loss of privacy regarding your medical history.
That’s why turning to a car accident lawyer in Kansas City is so vital for our clients—we protect their rights against insurance companies before a trial case becomes a possibility. By protecting your privacy early in the process, we can keep your claim as strong as possible, whether or not you pursue compensation in court.
If you’ve been in a car accident recently and you want to make sure your rights are protected, contact Adler & Manson today. We have more than 65 years of combined experience fighting for Kansas City residents, and we’ve secured more than $80 million for our injured clients. Call (816) 333-0400 so we can speak in a free legal consultation to discuss your options and begin work on your behalf.