Insurer's Independent Medical Exam for Amazon Flex Drivers
As an Amazon Flex driver, you may have agreed to work on an independent contractor basis. Some employers misclassify employees in order to avoid paying workers’ compensation benefits. However, there is a presumption in Illinois that workers are employees unless an insurer can demonstrate certain factors in a hearing. An insurer’s independent medical exam for Amazon Flex drivers can make a substantial difference to the outcome of claims. If you’ve been asked to go through an IME by Amazon Flex’s insurer, you should consult the seasoned Chicago workers’ compensation lawyers of Katz, Friedman, Eisenstein, Johnson, Bareck & Bertuca.Insurer’s Independent Medical Exam for Amazon Flex Drivers in Chicago
Even if your claim is accepted by Amazon Flex’s insurer, the extent of your disabilities or whether certain medical care is reasonable and necessary may be disputed. Your claim may be denied outright. Or some benefits may be denied while others are granted. Sometimes, insurers ask injured workers to undergo an independent medical exam (IME). These exams are called independent, but they’re often performed by doctors known to recommend conservative, less-expensive treatment such as a sessions of physical therapy, rather than expensive procedures such as surgery. They may not be fully objective. Some IME doctors have a reputation for siding with insurers and recommending conservative care.
While there are situations in which the course of medical treatment is fairly clear and based on objective evidence like imaging or lab work, there are also situations in which one doctor may recommend a more significant course of care, while another may be more cavalier about the injuries.
An experienced Chicago attorney can advocate for you in connection with an IME report. An insurer can stop paying your benefits if you don’t go to the IME with the doctor selected by the Amazon Flex driver’s insurer.What Does an IME Doctor Do?
Amazon Flex’s insurer will send your medical records, including any imaging, to the IME doctor beforehand. Typically the doctor will review it even before examining you. You should be aware that you may be under surveillance by its insurer to determine whether you are malingering. Additionally, the doctor and nurse will be looking for signs that what you say about your injuries is untrue or exaggerated. They may even watch you come and go from the exam. It is crucial to be honest and to stay even-tempered through the exam. The IME will include a physical exam.How Will the IME Report Be Used?
The IME report can be used as evidence by the insurer in a hearing before the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission. Hearings may be necessary when there is a dispute about a worker’s benefits or eligibility for benefits. Your own treating physician may need to provide evidence to counter the IME report. The arbitrator will weigh your doctor’s credibility against the IME doctor’s credibility. In some cases, arbitrators are aware of an IME doctor’s record of siding with insurers and will weigh the evidence accordingly. However, there are also situations that are more ambiguous and it is crucial to have an attorney by your side who is able to properly present your case to the arbitrator so that an IME report that cuts against your claim doesn’t result in your claim be denied or fewer benefits than to what you’re entitled.Retain a Chicago Lawyer
As an Amazon Flex driver, you may sustain serious injuries while delivering packages on behalf of customers. Your employer’s insurer may prioritize profits over your need for benefits. The experienced Chicago attorneys of Katz, Friedman, Eisenstein, Johnson, Bareck & Bertuca provides legal representation in connection with an insurer’s independent medical exam for Amazon Flex drivers. We represent Amazon Flex drivers in Champaign, Quincy, Aurora, and Rockford, along with Cook, Winnebago, Kane, Sangamon, and Adams Counties. If you sustained an injury while working for Amazon Flex, you should call us at 800-444-1525 or 312-263-6330 or complete our online form.