Rating Impairment

How much and for how long?

If- after reaching maximum medical improvement- a worker is left with permanent functional limitations- they should have an impairment rating examination. This rating helps determine the monetary award level a worker is eligible to receive for permanent impairment related to their accepted condition-s-.

Attending providers may perform the rating exam as long as they are physicians currently licensed in medicine- surgery- or dentistry- or department-approved -IME- chiropractors. Claim managers may request that the attending provider conduct an impairment rating. The AP can perform their own rating exam- or if they prefer not to- or think they do not have adequate knowledge of rating- they may arrange for a consultant perform the rating.

Independent Medical Exams (IMEs)

Seeking another opinion

IMEs are evaluations performed by an objective neutral party -physician or chiropractor- that answer specific medical questions and/or determine the extent to which an impairment may exist.

Medical examiners who perform the IMEs provide a fresh and valuable medical perspective that can be helpful in cases that are more complex. As an AP- you will receive notice when an IME has been requested for your patient- as well as a copy of the IME report. Only physicians and chiropractors who meet L&I’s standards may perform IMEs. Only the department or self-insured employer may request and schedule these exams.

Visit our Independent Medical Exams and Impairment Rating Information web page for more information.