Law

Should You Authorize an Insurance Adjuster to Access Your Medical Records After a Philadelphia Car Accident?

If you have been in a car accident, you will soon get a call from an insurance claims adjuster. When you interact with the adjuster, they will ask you to sign a document that authorizes the release of your medical records. When you sign this paper, the adjuster can pull out your medical charts, bills, X-rays, and notes. This could result in them finding information that can be used against you, including a pre-existing condition. Thus, you should not sign a release paper before you can speak with a car accident lawyer Philadelphia

The records the adjuster can access may include statements you give your doctor when you get treatment. The adjuster’s request can seem invasive, but they will do it to find evidence that can give them a reason to devalue or deny your accident claim. So, how will you proceed when you get this request? A reliable lawyer can help you navigate such a situation. 

Does an Adjuster Need Permission to Access Your Medical Records?

You and your doctor must be the only ones who can access your medical records unless you give consent to another party. This is the reason a claims adjuster may ask you to sign a document that authorizes them to your protected information. However, you have no obligation to authorize such access. You can provide the adjuster with the data they need when reviewing your claim through other ways.

What Will the Adjuster Do with Your Medical Records?

Insurance adjusters will request access to your records when you file a claim against their company to:

  • Verify that your injuries resulted from the car accident. Generally, insurance adjusters wish to know the injuries you originally presented to your doctor for treatment and when. Such information will help them determine what the insurance company can cover. To succeed in your pursuit of compensation, you must prove your injuries are associated with the accident. Thus, you must seek immediate medical attention after a crash. Waiting longer allows the insurer to question the validity of your claim.
  • Look for reasons to devalue or deny your claim. The adjuster will find inconsistencies in your statement and look for opportunities to argue that your injuries did not directly result from the accident. And when you allow them to access your medical records, they could find information outside of your recent accident and use it against you. 
  • Understand your expected recovery timeline. The adjuster will want to access your medical records to determine the prognosis of your doctor regarding your maximum medical improvement (MMI). The value of your claim is affected by your recovery timeline and the kinds of treatment you will need. 

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