We’ve talked a lot about what an Independent Medical Exam (IME) is, and how most of the time there is little or nothing “independent” about them. After all, an IME physician is either directly or indirectly hired by the defendant’s insurance carrier. That means, he or she has every reason to submit a report that is more favorable to the carrier, and, of course, less favorable to you. That being said, there are things you can do to make the IME go more smoothly for you.
First, take a deep breath. Try to relax. If you go into the IME stressed out, you are liable to say or do something that could harm your case. Be calm and avoid being emotional.
Second, please be punctual. You don’t want to prejudice the examining doctor before he or she even examines you.
Third, do not embellish upon your physical or psychological limitations. There is no need to do this, and exaggerating your condition could very well work against you. Simply be honest.
Fourth, having said that, do not go to the opposite extreme and leave things out either. Tell the examining physician everything that is wrong with you in a calm manner.
Fifth, make sure you know about your medical condition and the treatment you have received inside and out. Be thorough with your timeline and your facts.
And finally, should you feel uncomfortable about going to the IME alone, ask your attorney whether he or she can send a registered nurse along with you. A registered nurse can be in the room, and take notes on (sometimes even audio record the entire examination. Often, just knowing there is another health professional in the room can level the playing field, and make you feel more at ease.