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Medical Insights

  By Dan Baldyga
About Dan Baldyga
  Dan Baldyga has a lifetime of experience in the field of motor vehicle accidents, personal injury and compensation.
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"PERMANENT" vs. "TEMPORARY" DISABILITY and "TOTAL" vs. "PARTIAL" DISABILITY: In discussing the concept of "disability", it's important to develop a working knowledge of the relevant terminologies. Commonly, personal injuries are classified as either "permanent" or "temporary". The two terms are used basically to describe the anticipated duration of an injury, and not its degree or severity. Thus, if an injury is conceived as one which would continue throughout the remainder of an individual's lifetime, it's said to be "permanent" in nature. Conversely, if it's reasonably probable that the claimant will attain a full or complete recovery within some future period, the injury is classified as temporary, regardless of how severe or extensive the injury might otherwise appear.

Another common classification of disabilities relate to whether they are considered to be "total" or only "partial." These terms refer to the actual extent of the claimant's injuries, regardless of whether they're permanent or temporary in duration. The following four special categories are often utilized in personal injury litigation.

(1) A seriously injured person who initially is temporarily hospitalized or otherwise completely impaired, although expected to eventually regain full function, symbolizes TEMPORARY TOTAL DISABILITY.

(2) TEMPORARY PARTIAL DISABILITY is symbolized by that period when, following the initial period of complete impairment of the seriously injured party (the period of temporary total disability), the party recovers and is able to resume some but not all former activities.

(3) PERMANENT TOTAL DISABILITY describes a condition, usually applicable in the most severe cases, in which the injury produces a nearly total impairment to the body as a whole, again placing the emphasis both on the extent of the functional impairment, and its duration.

(4) PERMANENT PARTIAL DISABILITY describes a condition where the injured party, even after sustaining a permanent injury, still retains some substantial body function or earning capacity, with the emphasis centered on the extent of the functional impairment itself.

EXAMINATION BY THE INSURANCE COMPANY DOCTOR: The adjuster may tell you he wants you to be examined by a doctor of the insurance company's choice. Beware of such a request. Doctors assigned by the insurance company are notorious for finding nothing wrong with the claimant, or for finding "no objective basis" for their complaints.

You don't have to agree to be examined by the insurance company doctor! You're entitled to see only the doctor of your choice. The Insurance Company has no right to make you submit to its doctor - - unless your claim actually becomes a formal court case involving a lawsuit. By that time, it will be too late for you to be caught in the crossfire of a medical battle the insurance company may attempt to start. Hold your ground until your attending physician has released you. Then it's okay to submit to an examination, because so much time will have passed it will be impossible for them to minimize the pain in their report to the insurance company, of the discomfort and suffering your injury has caused you.

OTHER MEDICAL BILL COVERAGE(S): Check all your other policies. You may have coverage to pay for your medical bills regardless of who was at fault. If you have a Health Insurance Policy or Health Plan of some sort read the fine print. Your policy may not require you to pay back the medical bill payments made in your behalf - - even if you collect from the person who struck you!

If the insurance adjuster asks whether you have any of these multiple coverage options, don't tell him. It's none of his business. Whatever medical bill coverage you may have has nothing to do with the value of your claim or the amount of money he pays to settle your loss.


DISCLAIMER: The only purpose of this claim tip is to help people understand the motor vehicle accident claim process. Neither Dan Baldyga or Vince Ciulla make any guarantee of any kind whatsoever; NOR do they purport to engage in rendering any professional or legal service; NOR to substitute for a lawyer, an insurance adjuster, or claims consultant, or the like. Where such professional help is desired it is the INDIVIDUAL'S RESPONSIBILITY to obtain said services.

Copyright (c) 2005 by Daniel G. Baldyga All Rights Reserved

Dan Baldyga's fourth and latest book Auto Accident Personal Injury Insuraece Claim: (How To Evaluate And Settle Your Loss) can be found on the Internet at This book reveals "How To" successfully handle your motor vehicle accident claim, so you won't be taken advantage of. It also goes into detail regarding the revolutionary BASE (The Baldyga Auto Accident Settlement Evaluation Formula). BASE explains how to determine the value of the "Pain and Suffering" you endured because of your personal injury.

Additional Information provided courtesy of and Warranty Direct
© 2000-2007 Vincent T. Ciulla

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