What is Maximum Medical Improvement?

Maximum Medical Improvement, or MMI, occurs when an injured person reaches a state where his or her condition cannot be improved any further or when a treatment plateau in a person’s healing process is reached. It means that the patient has fully recovered from the injury and that the patient’s medical condition has stabilized to the point that no major medical or emotional change can be expected in the injured person’s condition. At that point, no further healing or improvement is deemed possible despite continuing medical treatment or rehabilitative programs the injured person may partake in.

Who Determines Maximum Medical Improvement?

Only a physician possesses the authority to determine the point at which a patient attains Maximum Medical Improvement (MMI). The workers’ compensation insurance company is entitled to request an independent medical examination for corroborating MMI based on the patient’s medical history and a thorough medical assessment. Subsequently, a comprehensive report is compiled and distributed to the patient, treating physician, employer, and insurance carrier. Should the treating physician dissent from the report, they escalate the claim to the Industrial Commission or a workers’ compensation judge for a special hearing. The ultimate decision on whether MMI has been achieved rests with the judge.

Attaining MMI sometimes indicates complete recovery with no future work limitations. However, in most instances, the outlook is less certain, and the patient’s future cannot be guaranteed to remain unchanged. If certain treatment approaches remain unexplored, there is still potential for improvement. Yet, the risk of deterioration later on also looms.

woman holds injured elbow


Get a Fair Settlement

Maximum Medical Improvement will ultimately give an estimate to your workers’ compensation attorney regarding your care and the damages that you have suffered. MMI can help indicate:

  • Pain
  • Suffering
  • Lost Wages
  • Medical Costs
  • Estimate the future damages of the injury

There are almost no circumstances under which a settlement be considered until Maximum Medical Improvement has been reached as it would be impossible to determine if there is still potential for more beneficial treatment to arise and create more potential costs. Additionally, the full extent of your injuries may not be fully understood until their treatment has run its course.

Schedule a Free Consultation With Peters Law Firm Today

At Peters Law Firm, our first priority is making sure that you recover from your injuries to the fullest extent possible. The legal battle does not truly begin until you have received the care that you deserve and have achieved Maximum Medical Improvement. Understanding the concept of MMI is paramount to understanding your case and achieving the outcomes that you desire. If you have been injured at work or due to the negligence of another person, contact one of our qualified attorneys at Peters Law right away. We are here to answer any questions that you might have and assist you with the process of filing your claim.

Contact us today or call 712-435-4110 to schedule a free initial consultation with a workers’ compensation attorney.

About Us

Choose Peters Law Firm for a quality lawyer and law office in the Council Bluffs, IA area.Our experienced attorneys and dedicated staff are what make us one of the biggest and most experienced law firms in Southwest Iowa.