If you or somebody you care about has sustained an injury caused by the careless or negligent actions of another individual, business, or entity, you will likely be able to recover compensation for your losses. This can include coverage of her medical bills, lost income, pain and suffering, and more. However, securing this compensation can be challenging. Part of the process of obtaining the compensation you need is proving your injuries. This means that you will need to get ahold of copies of all of your medical records after the injury. Here, we want to discuss how you can obtain medical records so you can use them for your insurance settlement or during a personal injury lawsuit.
Obtaining Your Medical Records for an Injury Claim
When you file a personal injury claim, you can be certain that the case is going to revolve around your medical records. Essentially, you are asking for compensation for your injuries and any other losses that stem from the injuries. Medical records are vital.
Any hospital or medical facility where a plaintiff in the case sought medical treatment is going to have records of the care that they provided, as well as the cost of that care. At some point in the personal injury case, particularly after a personal injury lawsuit has been filed in civil court, the injury victim or the other party (the defendant or the insurance carrier of the other side) will seek to acquire these medical records.
Your attorney is going to ask you to authorize the release of your medical records. In general, your attorney will ask you to sign a medical release form that will include your name, Social Security number, date of birth, address, and account number (for the respective medical facility). The release form may also ask for specific records, records for a certain range of dates, or for all records in the provider’s possession.
Your attorney can request these records on your behalf if you give them permission to do so. You must give your permission in writing with a request that is signed and dated.
It should be noted that many health care providers now allow patient records to be requested through an online portal. It is a good idea to call the medical provider in question to ask them the best way to obtain the records that you need.
Please understand that medical providers will be allowed to charge a fee to release the records if copies need to be provided and if they have to mail them to you. You may have to pay this fee before they release the records.
In some cases, a request for medical records could be denied. This is particularly true if the defendant in the case requests the medical records from the provider, but you have not provided your consent for the records to be turned over. Again, personal injury claims are going to revolve around your medical records. At some point, your medical records have to become available to both your attorney as well as to the other side. There are several advantages to having medical records released:
- This allows both sides to assess the physical injuries and the viability of the case
- This provides details on the nature and extent of the victim’s injuries
- This helps calculate the total damages sustained by the victim
- This allows for an independent and trusted medical expert contain allows the records to determine the cause of the injuries
Please work with your Phoenix personal injury lawyer when deciding how and when to acquire your medical records, as well as who to turn these records over to.