Following a catastrophic personal injury, it often takes a team of experts to handle the many intricacies of the case. While a personal injury lawyer fights on the front lines for an injured person’s legal rights, a case manager works hard behind the scenes, taking on a long list of tasks that makes for a smoother, more effective rehabilitation process and transition home.
So what exactly does a case manager do? Generally speaking, in the area of catastrophic personal injury, a case manager works with and for the injured person – handling insurance and medical paperwork, planning and assessing the level and type of care, determining whether money and benefits are being spent to the person’s best advantage and relaying information between client and lawyer.
A case manager usually appears only in cases involving severe injury, as a way to ease the workload for the lawyer, whose efforts can be devoted to complex and detailed legal matters.
The case manager can take on a number of responsibilities related to medical care and rehabilitation. With steady advancements in both areas over the years, tailoring the best possible plan to each individual has become more complicated – while the set of expertise needed to address such details has become more valuable.
Following a motor vehicle accident in which you’ve been injured, for example, a case manager can assess the effectiveness of Ontario’s Statutory Accident Benefits in your care and recovery process, if the injury gives rise to a catastrophic impairment. Or, following a serious workplace incident, a case manager can help determine whether the WSIB benefits are meeting your needs – whether, say, prescription drug benefits are sufficient to alleviate physical pain or psychological distress.
Because so many steps exist along the road to recovery – in the hospital, rehab facilities, home – a case manager is helpful in guiding the victim and the family through the long process. Tact and emotional support make the process a little easier, while sound medical knowledge ensures the injured person is well-positioned for a positive recovery and can achieve, as much as possible, a return to their usual daily activities