Tips for working with your doctor if you’ve been in an accident in Colorado.
Seeing a doctor is inevitable when you’ve been in an accident. You conversation with them could make or break your settlement or court case. You should know how best to navigate seeing a doctor after an accident. I’m Jake Kimball. I’m one of the partners at Springs Law Group. And I want to talk to you about how to work with your own doctor.
If you’ve been in an auto accident in Colorado, the number one thing I want you to understand is that a lot of doctors, if they don’t regularly get involved in litigation, do not want to be involved in litigation. And that’s fine. But you just need to understand that there’s going to be a little pushback.
So if you go into a doctor’s office and say, “I want you to give an opinion that will hold up in court that says if this accident is related to pre-existing conditions,” they’re probably going to say no. I don’t think that’s the way to go about it anyway. If you have a doctor that you like, and you want their advice and recommendations, then that’s great; stick with them. But what you should do, though, is be really clear the first time you see them after the accident on what you’re experiencing. What I mean by that is this. If I go for my annual checkup, they’ll ask how are you doing? I’m not going to bring up every event that happened during the last year. But if they say, “How are you doing”, you say “Fine”, and you don’t ever mention an auto accident, their records aren’t going to show that you were ever in an auto accident. And if this case progresses, and the other side looks at the records, they’ll rightfully ask you, “Well, wait a minute, you never even told your doctor that this accident hurt you.” So you need to be upfront and honest.
And that’s really important for your doctor too. I mean, they need to have all the information available to them. So they can help you if you explain to them. “You know what happened? What day did it happen? What pain are you having? What do you think is wrong with you?” That sort of thing. And then the number two thing I would say is follow their advice. So doctors are really smart, an they have a lot of information that we don’t have. You need to follow their advice. So if they tell you to do something, it’s best to follow it unless you have strong feelings about it, then I would say get another opinion, get a second opinion. But if you just disregard their advice, then you should be ready for that to be used against you. So if a doctor says to you, for example, I think you need to go to physical therapy, and you don’t go to physical therapy, then it’s going to look like you’re not doing your part. To get better from this accident, you definitely highly recommend that you follow your doctor’s recommendations. If you disagree with them, or you’re unsure about them, you can always get a second opinion, that’s fine.
Just like if you are going in for cancer treatment, or you’re going in for any other thing where you weren’t sure about the recommendation, or maybe they recommend surgery and you’re not ready for surgery. Well, that’s fine getting a second opinion. But don’t just not do anything or disregard their advice because it will be used against you in your case because you’re not doing everything that you need to do to get better from the accident.
The third thing is if you have an attorney, you need to tell your attorney who your doctor is or who your doctors are, if you have multiple doctors so that your attorney can get all the relevant records from that doctor to use in your case. So even if you think well, maybe I’m not sure if this is relevant. I don’t know if they need this or not let your attorney make that decision. You give them everything then an attorney can based on their experience, decide what needs to be included and what’s irrelevant. And then you’re not making that decision, your attorneys are.
So those are the three things I’d recommend working with your doctor if you’ve been in an accident in Colorado.
Doctors are a necessary step in securing your settlement. They are best treated as an ally in your journey to recovery. Contact a personal injury lawyer at Springs Law Group in Colorado Springs to set up a free consultation and discuss your legal options.
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