Monthly Archives: September 2016

When, Where, and What: The Importance of Chronologies for Personal Injury

In a personal injury case, such as a motor vehicle accident, one of the most effective tools you can have is a timeline of events pertaining to the injury, referred to as a medical chronology. This chronology is a record of medical events in the order in which they occurred. The timeline starts from the beginning, details the accident or injury, and then lists subsequent medical services provided. In cases involving serious injuries, it is very common to have a complex chronology with multiple medical providers.

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The law firm obtains the medical records from each medical provider in order to fully understand the extent of the person’s injuries, any pre-existing conditions that could have been complicated by the injury, and the medical treatment plan. The law firm will then thoroughly review the medical records to summarize noteworthy items of medical and legal interest that could prove crucial to the legal case. The timeline will include things like medication administration and tests performed, such as x-rays, MRIs, scans, blood work, progress reports, nursing notes, and referrals to other doctors, all to give a complete picture of everything that was done in the hospital.

So how does the legal team use a chronology, and why is it important to have one? The team will use it to point out procedures that were not done (e.g. gaps in treatment), negligence, or to quantify a degree of pain and suffering. It might also identify the need for a medical expert to testify. Your medical records are the foundation for any personal injury claim. After all, your legal claim is all about asking the party who caused the injury to pay for the damage you suffered, and deciding on the amount of damages is very subjective and often difficult to determine. These lawsuits need to include a future projection of treatment you might need, so the medical chronology helps to establish the degree of injury and any complications going forward that resulted from the injury. It is used to prove the injury, medical expenses, and future needs.

A medical chronology is a proven method for highlighting medical facts, even in the most complicated cases. This chronology not only summarizes the medical record and vital information, but an expert firm will also analyze the potential damages for your claim. Identifying the level of monetary exposure helps to determine whether the lawsuit should be settled, arbitrated or mediated, or go to trial. It is important to have an expert like LM Summary Services who knows how to effectively prepare items for your case.