What Happens After You’ve Reached MMI?
When you are injured in a car accident, slip and fall, or any other preventable accident, healing time can vary. Cuts and bruises can improve in a matter of weeks while more severe injuries, like broken bones, spinal cord injury, and traumatic brain injury, can take months or years to heal. For some people, a serious injury can last a lifetime.
In order to guide your recovery, your doctor will use what’s called maximum medical improvement (MMI). This blog explains what MMI is, how it impacts the value of your case, and how a New York personal injury lawyer can help you maximize your compensation.
What Is Maximum Medical Improvement (MMI)?
The point of maximum medical improvement occurs when you are fully recovered from your injuries. When you suffer a serious injury, MMI may be the point at which you are unlikely to improve despite continued medical treatment. You may still need medical care for managing the limitations resulting from your injury, as well as additional services to live as comfortably as possible. In New York, a patient is considered to have reached their MMI automatically after two years.
The Importance of Maximum Medical Improvement When Filing a Personal Injury Claim
The best time to negotiate or accept a settlement is usually when you have reached maximum medical improvement. A settlement that covers your medical needs and expected losses can be assured when you wait until you reach MMI.
Medical expenses and lost wages are typically included in a personal injury settlement. If you reach MMI after a serious injury but will still require medical treatment and personal care, you need to seek compensation for these expenses too. If your injuries will prevent you from returning to your same job in the future, you can also seek compensation for loss of future earning capacity.
Insurance companies often press injured victims to accept a settlement before MMI has been reached. However, once you accept the offer, you cannot reopen the claim or seek additional compensation, which is a problem if you have future expenses. Before agreeing to settle, you should fully understand your prognosis and what to expect in the future, as final compensation amounts are determined by factors such as short-term disability, long-term disability, or inability to return to work.
Who Confirms When You Reach MMI?
It is up to your doctor or medical team to determine when you are at maximum medical improvement. Depending on your injuries, this may take a while. If you are uncertain about your prognosis or treatment plan, you may want a second opinion. Insurance companies may also disagree and request an Independent Medical Exam (IME). A personal injury attorney will guide you through this process to ensure your rights are protected and your claim is maximized.
Get a Free Consultation From a New York Personal Injury Lawyer
After your treating physician declares you have reached MMI, it is time to discuss settlement options. Make sure to schedule a free consultation with an attorney before you accept the insurance company’s first offer, as it’s rarely if ever their best one. The skilled personal injury lawyers at Silberstein, Awad & Miklos, PC have years of experience getting best results for injured clients,so protect your right to full and fair compensation by calling 1-877-ASK4SAM today.