Columbus, Ohio. Personal injury trial lawyer, David A. Bressman, has over 20 years of experience representing injury victims. Over that time period, he has come across many who have pretty basic, fairly easy questions that they would like the insurance adjuster to honestly answer. In his experience, most adjusters either refuse to answer or provide misleading information. He presents to you a series of questions, and likely insurance company responses.
"QUESTION 5: Why do I have to give you an unrestricted medical authorization before I can settle the claim? Why do you need records from 5, 10, 15 or 20 years before the collision? Why
do you need records from doctors OTHER than the ones I saw for treatment related to the
ANSWER: So the adjuster can go on a fishing expedition into your medical history and find anything about your prior health which will help the company either deny your claim or pay out as little as possible. THE ADJUSTER IS NOT LEGALLY ENTITLED TO GET ANY RECORDS OTHER THAN THOSE THAT ARE CAUSALLY OR HISTORICALLY RELATED TO YOUR INJURIES IN THE COLLISION! For instance, if you broke your foot in the collision, the adjuster, reasonably, has the right to know if you have injured your foot before; however, the adjuster is NOT entitled to know if you have neck or back problems since you are not claiming this injury.
You can just as easily collect your accident-related records and send them to the adjuster for review. But, usually, if you are not represented by counsel the adjuster will never accept this. By using an attorney, the attorney can usually put limits on how much medical information needs to be disclosed.