Independent Medical Examinations (IME)

Independent Medical Examiner

INDEPENDENT MEDICAL EXAMINATIONS are common in legal and administrative proceedings when a party desires to confirm the presence or absence of a claimed medical issue. During an Independent Medical Exam (IME), a physician, surgeon, psychologist, neuropsychologist, or other healthcare provider conducts an in-person (or telepresence) examination focused on particular signs, symptoms, diseases, limitations, or injuries that form the basis of the legal claim. IMEs are common in civil litigation as part of personal injury and medical malpractice claims, and they are also instrumental for long-term disability claims, Workers’ Compensation claims, veterans’ disability claims, and programs involving impaired professionals.

Independent Medical Examinations may be performed at the clinician’s office or another agreed-upon location, though the general rule is that an adverse party cannot be compelled to travel an unreasonable distance. On occasion, observers such as legal counsel or nurses may attend IMEs.

An IME is Intended to Answer Four Specific Questions

An IME may be performed by any licensed healthcare professional, and the exam typically focuses on one or more of the following areas:
  1. The nature and existence of the claimed disease, symptoms, or injury.  In other words, does a disease, process, defect, or injury exist and, if so, what is it?
  2. The etiology of the claimed disease, symptoms, or injury.  If a problem exists, what caused it to arise and is it causally linked to the claimed cause?
  3. The extent of the claimed disease, symptoms, or injury. How severe is the alleged problem and in what ways is the claimant affected?
  4. The prognosis of the claimed sign, symptoms, or injury. How, if at all, will the claimant be affected by the claimed issue(s) in the future and what options are available for treatment or mitigation?
Given the diversity of issues involved in Independent Medical Exams, an experienced Board-Certified physician, surgeon, psychologist, or healthcare provider is an absolute requirement. To secure a hand-selected IME expert witness who is ready to work with you, please contact Elite Medical Experts and speak with a physician or nurse on Elite’s experienced Case Strategy Team today.

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Dr. Burton Bentley II, the CEO of Elite Medical Experts, is a nationally renowned authority on medical liability, informed consent, and complex issues at the intersections of medicine, law, and business. As a board-certified Emergency Medicine physician and entrepreneur, Dr. Bentley founded Elite Medical Experts in 2010 while overseeing nearly a decade of year-over-year growth. Dr. Bentley also developed and patented a commercial medical device and co-founded Consent Spectrum, a state-of-the-art digital platform for informed consent in aesthetic medical procedures.  Outside of Elite, Dr. Bentley can be found spending time with his family and riding horses in Tucson’s riverbeds and deserts.

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