“Integrity is telling myself the truth. And honesty is telling the truth to other people.” - Spencer Johnson
My Best Advice
My best advice to you is for you to always tell the truth. Always. When bringing a court case, nothing is more important than your credibility. Nothing else is even close. The DBA insurance company lawyer is going to try and make you look like you are lying. If this happens, the Judge will rule against you and you will lose. Bank on it. I know I do.
My Second Best Advice
Which brings me to my second best advice. The problem is that in many instances folks get caught in traps left for them by the DBA insurance company. In other words, they don’t know that they are messing up their case. Happens all the time. Well meaning honest folks get caught in one of the DBA insurance company traps.
Which is why I strongly suggest that you read my free book - Win Your Defense Base Act Case. This book is the best investment you are going to make. You can order it free here on this website or you can pay for it by ordering it from Amazon.com.
Also you can check out my podcast at DBAradio.com where i cover important DBA issues.
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You can call us at 619-234-2833 or you can fill out the contact form on this web page.
What is an Independent Medical Examination?
I firmly believe what you call something is important. This is why I tell the lawyers and staff at my office to not use the phrase, “Independent Medical Examination.” What I am talking about, of course, is a Defense Base Act insurance company medical examination.
Under the Defense Base Act, the insurance company will usually schedule a medical examination for you to attend. There is usually nothing “independent” about the DBA insurance company chosen doctor. This isn’t always the case - but this is usually is the case. That is why I call it what it is: a "Defense Medical Examination" or a "DBA insurance company medical examination." I call it that because that is what it is.
Who Has to Pay the Travel Costs for Me to Go to the DBA Insurance Company Doctor?
In a recent appeals case, the court held that trial Judge wrong in Ordering the DBA claimant to attend the defense medical examination and not requiring the DBA insurance company to pay the cost of the claimant attending the examination.
The appeals court ruled, the judge “erred in ordering claimant to bear the costs of his attendance at employer’s medical and vocational examinations in San Diego. Employer must bear the cost of obtaining its own evidence.”
So there you have it.
Now let’s talk practicalities. Will the you have to attend the medical examination when the insurance company puts up the money? Yes. Will the case be delayed fighting over this point? Yes.
Delays mean that the DBA insurance company doesn’t have to pay for your medical treatment and/or weekly benefits until later. Guess who profits over this delay?
It's Wise To Pick Your Fights Carefully, Otherwise Your Benefits Might Get Delayed
Thus, unless the cost is a real factor - it might be better to pick your fights carefully. Otherwise, you might end up with a two or three year delay in your getting benefits based on fighting over a small amount of money. You can always make the cost of reimbursement for having to attend the DBA insurance company examination as one of your costs that you are entitled to.
However, sometimes, cost is a real factor. For instance, if the DBA insurance company schedules an examination a long way from where you live and you have to travel and incur substantial expense to attend and the DBA insurance company refuses to pay for your travel - - then you might have to fight over the issue.
Finally, you (read: your lawyer) should be prepared to cite the recent Appeals court case that held that the DBA insurance company has to pay for you attending the defense medical examination. You may be successful in convincing the DBA insurance company that they have to pay for you attending their medical examination.
Disclaimer: Please understand these discussions and/or examples are not legal advice. All legal situations are different. This testimonial, endorsement and/or discussion does not constitute a guarantee, warranty, or prediction regarding the outcome of your legal matter, your particular case/ situation and/or this particular case/ situation. Thanks, Bill Turley