Car accidents continue to be a chief cause of both serious injury and death in Georgia and across the country. In fact, upwards of 38,000 individuals die and approximately 4.4 million others suffer injuries in motor vehicle crashes annually. Fortunately, accident victims are often eligible for substantial financial compensation from the insurance companies of at-fault drivers.
To process your claim, an insurer may ask you to complete some forms. While one of these, a blanket medical authorization, may seem standard, it may also complicate your accident claim considerably.
What does a blanket medical authorization do?
A blanket medical authorization gives an insurer the legal authority to examine all your medical records. This not only includes records that relate to the accident, your diagnosis and your treatments but also to every other medical record from your life.
Is a blanket medical authorization a standard form?
Despite what an insurer may claim, a blanket medical authorization is not part of standard claim processing. Rather, it may give the insurance company a legally valid reason to deny your claim or offer you an unreasonably low settlement. That is, the insurer may find something in your medical records, like a preexisting condition or chronic ailment, to its advantage.
Can you talk to a lawyer before signing insurance forms?
You have a right to talk to an attorney before speaking with insurance companies. You also have a right to legal counsel when reviewing or completing insurance forms. Ultimately, to ensure you do not inadvertently make matters worse for yourself, it may be advisable to exercise these rights.