Work Comp Claim | Medical Releases and Lists
Updated: August 13, 2022
ArticleWhen an injured worker files a workers' compensation claim, it is safe to say that just about all insurance companies will send you a form that asks for all doctors and hospitals you have been to in the past; in addition, they will enclose a medical release. A medical release will often give them permission to access medical records that they are NOT entitled. Medical releases are limited to the injury you are claiming.
What Do You Have to Hide? - Irrelevant ArgumentThe first argument you may get: "What do you have to hide?" That isn't the point. Privacy is a very important issue these days especially with medical information. Medical providers go to great lengths to protect your privacy. Not providing a medical listing to the insurance company does not mean you are hiding anything; it means that you are paying due consideration to your right to privacy. You would not believe the medical records that have crossed our desk from injured workers who came to us after they already submitted these forms.
We'll Deny Your Case If You Don't Fill it Out...The second argument is: "We will deny your work comp claim and not pay you anything unless you do this." Although this argument varies upon the situation, the insurance company cannot hold back benefits in return for this information. The law requires them to do an adequate investigation into your claim before denying your claim; using a medical release as a reason to deny your case is not valid. They must do an adequate investigation and if your work activities are consistent with the claimed injury, they should "pick up benefits."
Workers compensation is a no-fault system, so all that has to be shown is that work is a contributing factor to your current injuries. This has been a long-standing law in workers' compensation and it is known as the "you take the worker as they are when you hire them" standard.
This type of paperwork is part of many forms and letters you will get that can cause tremendous amount of confusion for injured workers.