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What The Doctor Can and Can’t Do

In our first installment on the subject of compulsory medical exams (CME) we talked about some of the things that you need to keep in mind when you are getting ready for and going through a CME. In this article we will take a look at what the doctor (insurance investigator) is and isn’t allowed to do and how you should handle some of the situations that may arise.

Rescheduling Your Exam

One of the first things that you can expect the insurance’s doctor to attempt to do is reschedule your visit on very short notice. The reason for this standard tactic is that, in the majority of cases, your attorney will have made arrangements for a videographer to record your exam. They would rather this didn’t happen.

By changing your scheduled appointment at the last minute they are hoping to get you into their office without the videographer so that there is no video record of what actually took place and how you preformed during the exam.

Do not agree to a change in schedule. Politely but firmly tell them that any schedule changes will have to be made through your attorney’s office. Remember this is not just a doctor’s appointment, it is part of a legal proceeding and the doctor is working for the opposition. It is very much in his and his clients interest to have him able to testify unfettered by the nuisance of a video depecting actual events.

Asking You to Disrobe

This is standard procedure and the doctor is completely within his rights to ask you to disrobe for the exam, but he must provide you with a hospital type gown or similar garment to wear.

You can expect this even if you have nothing more than an ankle or hand injury. There are two reasons behind this. One is to make you self conscious and ill at ease during the exam and taping and two is to see how you move while changing.

This is the only part of the exam that should not be filmed.

Invasive Test

This is a line that the doctor will gladly cross if you allow them to. They are limited, by law, as to types of test that they can perform, without your consent, during a compulsory medical exam.

They are not allowed to use any needles, hook you up to any machines or have any type of scans (CT, MRI, .etc) or x-rays taken. If the doctor goes beyond checking your reflexes, range of motion and other similar non-invasive test; politely refuse, stop the exam and call your attorney immediately.


This section could have been first based solely on its importance, which can’t be stressed enough. It is normal for the doctor to ask you questions, but this is not a deposition. If he asks questions about the incident keep your answers short and as general as possible. If he starts to press, wanting details, inform him that you have already given a sworn statement and that he can get a copy from the insurance company.

Never forget that he is not working as a physician with even the smallest interest in your well being. He is a medical investigator working for the insurance company that you are suing. His job is to try and trap you into inconsistencies that can be used to weaken your case when you get in court.