Why Do I Have to Sign Releases?

Dec 21, 2020 | WC & Other Laws

Why do injured workers have to give permission to the insurance company to obtain pre-work injury medical and employment history? We’ll explain why and also explain what we do to preserve our client’s privacy.

Why Do I Have to Sign Releases?

What’s the purpose of a release?

Something a lot of clients ask us is “Why do I have to sign releases?” The answer is fairly straightforward, when you are filing a workers’ compensation claim, you are asking for medical care and compensation in terms of lost wages and permanent impairment due to a work injury. The insurance company has to make sure that what they’re paying for was caused by a work injury and not something that preexisted the injury. To verify when the injury happened, the insurance company will ask you for the names of any doctors that treated you and sometimes who your employer was in the five years prior to your injury. Then, they can request those medical records, but they need your permission to do that. The permission you give them is called a release. One of the things that we deal with, on behalf of our clients, is answering constant requests for releases from insurance companies.

Will my unrelated medical history be protected?

You really need to have an attorney who will push back and will guard your medical privacy. Particularly, if you’ve got something substantial in your medical background, unrelated to any work injuries. That way, the insurance company doesn’t necessarily get a right to find out about your medical history. As long as it’s completely unrelated to the work injury, the insurance company shouldn’t have access to your records. When we represent you, we will make sure that the release is as narrow and as tailored to your case as possible.

Signing a release is necessary to receive work injury compensation

Despite being informed that their medical history will be protected, many of our clients often ask, “Do I really have to sign this release?” And the short answer is, yes, if you want the insurance company to pay for your back injury, shoulder injury, etc., you need to sign the release so your insurance company can verify your work injury. To reiterate, the insurance company wants to make sure that they’re only paying for the damage that was caused by a work injury. The insurance companies are also going to ask for your employment history for the same reason above. They want to make sure that there weren’t any reports of disability beforehand.

We’re here to help

A good law firm will always make sure that the releases are limited, temporary, and narrowly focused to the condition for which you’re asking the insurance company to provide compensation. And that’s why you should contact Kaplan Morrell Attorneys at Law. We have been helping injured and disabled workers since 1995. It’s what we do. If you or a loved one is injured in Colorado, don’t hesitate to let them know that there’s a law firm that they can have a free consultation with today. Give us a call at 970-356-9898.

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