Imagine the following situation: a negligent driver collides with your
car, breaking your leg in several places. Doctors have determined that
surgery is your best chance for a full recovery and, suddenly, you are
faced with very significant medical bills. To pay for the surgery and
emergency care you received, you contact an attorney to file an injury
suit as soon as possible. This is the best course of action, right?
Not necessarily. If the attorney in this situation immediately filed for
damage's on the plaintiff's behalf, then he or she did not have
their client's best interests in mind. Why? Because he or she did
not wait for doctors to determine the injury victim's maximum medical
improvement or MMI.
What is MMI?
Maximum medical improvement is the point in a patient's recovery where
it can be reasonably assumed that that patient will recover no further.
In many cases, this means that the patient has made a full recovery. In
other cases, it means that the patient is still suffering effects of an
injury, but will no longer improve (this is common in cases of
spinal cord injuries or
traumatic brain injuries).
Determining MMI is critical because it then allows counsel to work with
doctors to determine the full cost of their medical care and even reasonably
predict future ongoing care if it is needed. Only after calculating these
costs can the injury victim can file a claim that asks for an amount of
money that accurately accounts for the full scope of their medical care.
Filing Too Early
What happens when filing a claim occurs before MMI can be established?
Let's return to the example above: let's say that the attorney
you called did as you asked and filed the injury suit to cover the cost
of the surgery. Your case is settled and your recovery covers all of your
medical expenses up until that point.
However, following your surgery, it is determined that you will still require
months of physical therapy to get your leg functioning normally again.
Over most of that time, you will likely miss a lot of work, as well. Because
the injury suit was filed so soon, the initial claim recovery does cover
the lost wages or the physical therapy.
If you or a loved one has been hurt due to the actions of someone else,
then it may be time to speak to a proven Greenville personal injury attorney. At
Christian & Davis LLC, our legal team has recovered millions of dollars for clients who have
been wronged by others. We are ready to hear your story and, if necessary,
take aggressive and incisive steps towards recovering the relief you deserve.
Explore your legal options with our team of advocates today. Use our online
form to request a
free case evaluation.