Personal injury cases are complicated and require evidence to make a successful claim. Medical records offer invaluable insight into what injuries were sustained, the treatment received, and the prognosis for recovery, making them essential in personal injury cases.
When it comes to building a strong case for your personal injury lawsuit, collecting pieces of evidence is critical. Medical records play an important role in uncovering all aspects of the incident that caused the harm you’ve suffered. This information will give you a better chance at proving negligence on behalf of another person or entity. It can also help you receive compensation for damages resulting from your injuries.
Continue reading to learn how you can use medical records as evidence in personal injury cases.
Understanding Medical Records In Personal Injury Cases
Medical records provide a comprehensive account of the individual’s overall health and well-being before, during, and after an incident. They are often key pieces of evidence when it comes to assessing fault or demonstrating the extent of an injury.
Medical records include everything from x-rays, lab tests, physical examinations, assessments by specialists, and more. You typically collect this information over time, so there’s a clear understanding of what happened to cause harm or suffering. The use of these records is also helpful for establishing whether or not your case involved negligence and if you should receive compensation.
Admissibility Of Medical Records As Evidence
In order to use medical records in court, they must meet certain legal requirements. They must be complete and accurate, meaning you provide all details without any falsifications or omissions. They should also include patient information such as name, address, and date of birth, along with:
- Treatment notes
- Test results
- Medications prescribed
All this information helps prove that you sustained your injury due to negligence on another person’s part. If your records aren’t complete or accurate, the courts could dismiss them, which can harm your case.
Potential Challenges To Using Medical Records As Evidence
Challenges can range from whether or not proper procedures have been followed when obtaining and storing the records to how relevant they are to the case. In other words, if there is no logical connection between the medical records and the facts of the case, then it may be best to look elsewhere for evidence.
On top of that, questions such as who wrote up the records and how accurate they are could also come into play during proceedings. All parties involved will have to consider these factors carefully so that any discrepancies do not lead to an incorrect conclusion being reached. The reliability of these documents must always take priority over other considerations.
Types Of Medical Records You Can Use As Evidence
When it comes to using medical records as evidence in a personal injury case, there are certain types of documents that are commonly used. These include hospital discharge papers, lab test results, and imaging scans such as X-rays or MRIs:
- Hospital discharge papers provide details on the date of admission and discharge, along with a doctor’s diagnosis during the stay.
- Laboratory tests can be very helpful when trying to establish whether or not a person suffered from an injury or illness due to an accident.
- Imaging scans such as X-rays and MRIs give visual evidence about what happened inside the body after an accident occurred.
This data helps build a comprehensive picture regarding how exactly someone was injured in their personal injury case. With all these pieces taken into account, the court will have greater insight into the severity of the injuries sustained. This could result in more favorable outcomes for those involved.
How To Use Medical Records To Prove Damages
It’s important to note that since many injuries are not visible, having medical records is essential for proving your claim and receiving compensation. Medical documents such as doctor reports, hospital bills, medication prescriptions, physical therapy notes, and imaging results all provide valuable insight into the extent of an individual’s injury.
The information contained within these documents helps demonstrate what tangible financial losses were incurred due to an incident, such as lost wages from missed workdays or out-of-pocket costs for medical treatment. They also help paint a picture of intangible losses like pain and suffering. Without medical records reflecting the true nature and severity of someone’s injury, claimants will struggle to receive just compensation from their claims.
The Role Of Expert Witnesses In Personal Injury Cases
Expert witnesses play a vital part when it comes to establishing liability and damages due to their knowledge and experience. Specifically, experts can provide:
- Insight into how an injury occurred: Experts can assess the circumstances surrounding an accident or incident that caused someone harm, and they can explain why one party is liable for another’s injuries.
- Testimony about a victim’s condition: Expert testimony on your medical status at any given time is often key evidence in evaluating damages claims. It’s also valuable in assessing whether any pre-existing conditions existed prior to the injury being sustained.
- Information regarding economic losses: Economists are sometimes called upon as expert witnesses in personal injury lawsuits as well; they help calculate economic damages such as lost wages and reduced earning capacity resulting from an injured person’s inability to work.
Contact Injury.io Today
Medical records serve as an important piece of evidence in personal injury cases. You can use medical records to prove the extent of an injury, show the history of treatment, and provide evidence of negligence. If you need help with your personal injury case, contact the team at Injury.io to schedule a free case review.