There has been a sharp increase in Independent Medical Evaluations for psychiatric claims. Some experts attribute the rise to workers’ compensation claimants filing for PTSD, depression, and anxiety.

Genex, one of the country’s leading IME companies, has seen a 20% increase in IMEs for psychiatric conditions in workers’ compensation cases.

The October 2, 2019 article in Business Insurance (Esola) Reviews of Psych Claims in Comp Increase states:

Mental injury claims, either attached to a physical comp claim or standalone, are increasingly becoming an issue in contested comp claims, said Amy Bilton, a shareholder at the Chicago office of Nyhan, Bambrick, Kinzie & Lowry P.C., who represents employers in serious comp claims, often stemming from debilitating injuries or acts of violence.

PTSD is increasingly a common condition in claims but often it’s added later, which employers say can be attempts to prolong the claim, an industry term known as “malingering,” she said.

“People are getting a whole lot more treatment than they used to and in my practice in Illinois a lot of the cases I see start off as legitimate and then turn into malingering, which is why IMEs are being requested as frequently as they are,” said Ms. Bilton.

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