Pennsylvania Workers Comp Highlights:  What the Heck is an “IME”?
By: Kevin J. McGarrey, Esq.




You’ve just received a notice form your employer’s Workers Compensation insurance company ordering you to report for an “IME”.  The first thing you’ll ask is “what the heck is an IME”.  The second is: “do I have to go?

“IME” stands for “Independent Medical Examination”.  It is an exam administered by a physician of the insurance company’s choosing (thus taking the “I” out of “IME”).  The insurance company wants to evaluate if you are healthy enough to go back to work, fully or partially. 

It is imperative that you report for your IME.  The Pennsylvania Workers' Compensation Act allows the insurance company to have you examined by a doctor whom it chooses at a “reasonable time and place”.  Please note: this is NOT your treating physician and definitely not your friend.  The doctor used for the IME is hired by the insurance company that is seeking to stop paying your Workers Compensation benefit.

You will probably have to report for IME’s twice per year.  As stated earlier, you generally have to attend these IME’s, although there are some cases where you don’t.  Prior to attending any IME, contact your attorney and let him know that the IME is scheduled. Your attorney will determine the reasonableness of the exam.

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