In this video, personal injury attorney Ben Schwartz discusses his views on working out in the gym while you have a claim pending. Insurance companies are notorious for conducting surveillance on injured claimants and plaintiffs. Find out what Ben says – should you wait to work out until your case is over?
“Hey, I’m attorney Ben Schwartz. Today, I’m going to answer a question. This is not a question from a regular viewer. This is a question from an attorney named Carole.
Carole is a personal injury attorney and she was kind enough to give me what I thought was a very good and insightful question that has to do with personal injury and workers’ compensation law. This is a question that I get again and again and again from my own clients. If you’re an attorney or a client or a plaintiff or a claimant in a personal injury case, this is something that’s good to think about. Carole said to me, I have a client with a workers’ compensation case resulting from some pretty serious injuries. My client wants to know, can I start working out at the gym again or should I wait until my case is over?
Here’s the bottom line: There’s no right answer to this question. The standard advice that a personal injury lawyer is going to give their client is, while you have a case open don’t do anything that would look bad when the insurance company gets it on video.
However, that is not the advice I give my clients. What I basically say is this, you have to live your life and your health and happiness is primary. Financial remuneration is secondary. If, for your mental health, physical health, and happiness, you need to work out and get back to life, then do it.
However, recognize that you should not do anything in your legal case that’s inconsistent with your personal life. If you’re making a claim for injuries and part of that claim is that you’re saying, I cannot return to work, but you’re going to the gym and you’re working out. Recognize that if what you’re doing in the gym is inconsistent with your claim of disability, it’s going to negatively impact your credibility and it’s going ruin your case.
If you’re going to a deposition or a hearing and you’re testifying, I cannot lift my arm over my head due to my shoulder injury, but the insurance company has you on video in the gym doing overhead presses, with 10-pound weights, realize that’s going to significantly impact your credibility and it’s going to ruin your case.
My standard response to my clients is, You do you. You live your life the way you need to live your life, do the things that you need to do for your health, your welfare, for your happiness. However, never make a claim in an injury case that is inconsistent with the reality of the situation. The reality of the situation is that you can go to the gym, then the next question is, can you go back to work? If the reality of this situation is, you can do overhead presses, now even though you have had shoulder surgery. Do not go into a deposition and say to the defense lawyer, I can’t hand over my head. You want to be consistent. You want to be credible. You want to be truthful and honest, and that’s the most important thing.
So that’s my advice to my clients Carole, I hope that you find the video helpful. Feel free to show it to your clients and that will spark the conversation. I am attorney Ben Schwartz, and I handle personal injury cases and workers’ compensation cases. I’m with the law firm Schwartz & Schwartz. We are based out of Dover DE, covering the mid-Atlantic region. If you have a question for me, send me an email – firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks for watching!