In every personal injury matter, attending a medical practitioner for a diagnosis of your illness or injury forms the basis of your claim. But whether or not you continue to be treated after the diagnosis is a decision you need to make, and can greatly impact the outcome of your claim.
As a rule of thumb, it is always best to seek medical treatment as soon as possible after sustaining a personal injury. The most important thing should always be getting you back to your pre-injury health (or as close to it) as quickly as possible. If your injury is treatable, you should definitely consider undertaking such treatment. If you leave an injury untreated, it will be you who suffers if the injury gets worse or doesn’t heal as it should.
How will Medical Treatment Affect my WorkCover Claim?
Aside from the impact it will have on your physical wellbeing if you do not undertake medical treatment, it may also affect your personal injury claim. Certainly, if it is a WorkCover claim, being treated for the injury will be part and parcel with your claim, as WorkCover is geared towards having you back in the workforce as soon as possible. WorkCover benefits will usually always include some form of rehabilitative treatment as well as arranging a suitable duties program and providing you with income for the time you are off work.
TPD and Income Protection
With regards to TPD and Income Protection claims, the insurer will usually require the claimant to show proof that they are receiving medical treatment in order to be eligible to claim.
Common Law Claims
If you are undertaking a common law personal injury claim, then the courts will consider the steps you have taken to mitigate the impact the injury has had on your life and health in determining your final compensation payout. If part of your common law claim for personal injury compensation includes future economic loss because you claim you can’t work anymore (in part or entirely), but the evidence suggests that you would have better employment prospects had you undertaken treatment, the court is not going to look favourably on you when determining your compensation.
It is ultimately up to you what treatment you undertake, but if treatment is suggested to you either by your GP or a specialist, it is a good idea for you to follow through with it. Where treatment is a requirement for your personal injury claim, your lawyer will advise you as such. If you wish to discuss your personal injury claim with a lawyer, contact our offices on (07) 3252 0011 to arrange a free initial consultation.