Maximum medical improvement, or MMI, is the point at which a personal injury victim has completely recovered from his or her injuries, or has at least become stable enough for there to be a clear understanding of his or her medical future. This can include what kind of ongoing medical care will be necessary, what that care will cost and whether or not any physical limitations or disabilities could be permanent.
This kind of assessment is important in personal injury claims. In order to get the compensation necessary for your medical care, you need to determine what to ask for. Therefore, it is recommended that you wait until you reach maximum medical improvement before settling a personal injury claim. You should under no circumstances sign a settlement agreement or a release of liability before then.
Once you settle a claim, you are agreeing to release the responsible party from any further liability relating to your accident. If your injuries end up being more severe than you originally thought, or if other complications arise that you did not anticipate, you cannot go back to court and demand further compensation. This means that you will wind up paying your medical expenses out of your own pocket.
You can, however, get the claims process going before you reach the maximum medical improvement stage. You can notify the insurance companies about the accident, and let them know that you are intending to pursue a personal injury claim. From there, it is critical that you attend every doctor's appointment that you make, cooperate with all health providers, and obey all instructions given by your health care providers regarding your follow-up care. It is up to accident victims to mitigate the damages caused in the accident. This means that all reasonable steps must be taken to facilitate your recovery, and to avoid anything that can make your condition worse.