South Carolina Injury Attorneys
What Is Maximum Medical Improvement?

What Is Maximum Medical Improvement?

Imagine the following situation: a negligent driver collides with your car, breaking your leg in several places. Doctors have determined that surgery is your best chance for a full recovery and, suddenly, you are faced with very significant medical bills. To pay for the surgery and emergency care you received, you contact an attorney to file a personal injury lawsuit as soon as possible. This is the best course of action, right?

Not necessarily. If the attorney in this situation immediately filed for damage's on the plaintiff's behalf, then he or she did not have their client's best interests in mind. Why? Because he or she did not wait for doctors to determine the injury victim's maximum medical improvement or MMI.

What is MMI?

Maximum medical improvement is the point in a patient's recovery where it can be reasonably assumed that that patient will recover no further. In many cases, this means that the patient has made a full recovery. In other cases, it means that the patient is still suffering effects of an injury, but will no longer improve (this is common in cases of spinal cord injuries or traumatic brain injuries).

Determining MMI is critical because it then allows counsel to work with doctors to determine the full cost of their medical care and even reasonably predict future ongoing care if it is needed. Only after calculating these costs can the injury victim can file a claim that asks for an amount of money that accurately accounts for the full scope of their medical care.

Filing Too Early

What happens when filing a claim occurs before MMI can be established? Let's return to the example above: let's say that the attorney you called did as you asked and filed the injury suit to cover the cost of the surgery. Your case is settled and your recovery covers all of your medical expenses up until that point.

However, following your surgery, it is determined that you will still require months of physical therapy to get your leg functioning normally again. Over most of that time, you will likely miss a lot of work, as well. Because the injury suit was filed so soon, the initial claim recovery does cover the lost wages or the physical therapy.

If you or a loved one has been hurt due to the actions of someone else, then it may be time to speak to a proven Greenville personal injury attorney. At Christian & Christian, our legal team has recovered millions of dollars for clients who have been wronged by others. We are ready to hear your story and, if necessary, take aggressive and incisive steps towards recovering the relief you deserve.

Explore your legal options with our team of advocates today. Use our online form to request a free case evaluation.


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