In just about every accident case, it’s important for victims to wait until they have reached the point of maximum medical improvement (MMI) before they move ahead with a personal injury claim.
MMI means the claimant has completely recovered from his or her injuries, or the condition has become stable to the point at which his or her medical future can be clearly projected to form an accurate idea of the ongoing medical care that will be needed, how much that care will cost and the physical limitations or disabilities the claimant will continue to experience.
Ideally, you should never even begin negotiating a settlement until you have reached MMI and have a clear and thorough understanding of the long-term impact of your injuries. You should never sign a settlement agreement or a waiver that releases the other party from liability until you reach this point in your recovery.
Why is it so important to reach MMI?
Once you decide to settle your claim, you agree to release the liable party from any further liability. Thus, if your injuries end up being worse than expected and require you to spend significantly more money on medical treatment than initially forecast, you cannot go back and get more compensation. The case is closed.
You can get the claims process started before you reach MMI, including informing your insurance company of the accident and your intent to eventually pursue a claim.
For more information and guidance on the claims process and settlement negotiation tactics, consult a dedicated Bradenton personal injury attorney with Shapiro, Goldman, Babboni, Fernandez & Walsh.