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Have you been injured and forced to undergo an examination by the defendant’s doctor (IME)?  More and more we hear about the “Fake Bad Scale” being used by doctors to discredit legitimately injured people.

The test consists of a series of 43 true/false questions about pain symptoms.  Some of the questions are, “Much of the time my head seems to hurt all over.”  Other questions are, “I feel tired a good deal of the time,” or “I am not feeling much pressure or stress these days.”

Each positive answer counts against you.  If you are truly injured and have symptoms the test tends to indicate you are malingering.  A score of 23 is considered “suspicious.”  If you answer in the negative, that means you aren’t injured, so with this test, you can’t win.

There is a great deal of diverse opinions about the validity of the test in the scientific community.  It makes sense to me, that if you have a true brain injury, the test will show that you are a malingerer because you will have the symptoms that count against you.

The test was made up by a defense expert and is opposed by the American Psychological Association.  I will be watching decisions from other jurisdictions to see how courts handle this new defense tool.

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