Even though modern vehicles are safer than ever, car accidents remain a leading cause of both serious injuries and death in New York. In fact, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, 931 individuals died in traffic accidents in the Empire State in 2019 alone. Many others suffered catastrophic injuries in accidents on New York roadways that year.
After an accident, an insurer may ask you to complete a seemingly standard medical release. The purpose of this release is to give the insurance adjusters the medical information they need to process your claim. You must be careful, though, as signing a medical release may not be in your legal or financial interests.
The role of insurance companies
As corporations, most insurance companies maximize profits for their shareholders. This often involves collecting regular premiums and making unreasonably low settlement offers to injured New Yorkers. Put simply, even when you are at your most vulnerable, an insurer may have little problem putting its interests above yours.
The risk to you
If you execute a medical release, you can expect someone at the insurance company to pore over your medical files. During this review, an adjuster may find a pre-existing condition, medication or something else to use against you. That is, the insurance company may discover some reason to treat you unfairly. This unfair treatment may even include an outright denial of your injury claim.
Even though you are working hard toward recovering fully from the injuries you suffered in a car accident, your recovery is probably not cheap. Ultimately, by thinking twice before agreeing to sign a medical release, you may improve your chances of receiving financial compensation for your medical bills and other accident-related expenses.