One of the main questions people ask me after they’ve been in a car accident is how they will pay their medical bills? If you go to the E.R., it’s $10,000. An MRI is $6,000. It’s kind of scary racking up that much in medical bills. So, how are we going to pay for all this? Well, there are a few different options.
One policy that most people have on their car insurance is a policy called Personal Injury Protection, or PIP. That’s an additional coverage that you pay more money for each month. You pay that money in case you are in a car accident. This coverage pays for your medical bills. If you don’t have PIP, there are some other alternatives. One is you can use your health insurance. Your health insurance does get reimbursed from the settlement at the end, but they can pay those bills initially. Lastly, there are a lot of people that don’t have health insurance or PIP. What those people typically do to pay these medical bills,
One is you can use your health insurance. Your health insurance does get reimbursed from the settlement at the end, but they can pay those bills initially. Lastly, there are a lot of people that don’t have health insurance or PIP. What those people typically do to pay these medical bills,
If you don’t have health insurance or PIP, you can work on what is called a doctor’s lien. What that means is these doctors are willing to hold the bill, meaning they have a credited account at the facility, to hold the bill until the very end when the case settles, then out of the settlement they get paid. The complication with that is that most doctors will not work on a medical lien if there is not an attorney involved. They do that because having an attorney involved ensures that they will get paid.
There are a couple things you want to keep in mind about medical bills. Every insurance policy has what is called policy limits. Policy limits is a very complicated matter, and can really make settlements difficult. For instance, in the state of Washington, the minimum policy limit is $25,000. That means the very best you can get from some of these policies is $25,000. It doesn’t matter if you have $50,000 in medical bills. If the policy is only $25,000 that is all you can get. So, in those circumstances, you have to get really creative to pay these bills. One thing I do as an attorney all the time is I call the hospitals, I call doctors and I negotiate those bills down. Sometimes the bill is $10,000, and I have to call them and say, Hey, I’m sorry, we can only pay $2,000. Another thing we have to really focus on and really be careful with is some of these bills go to collections, and
One thing I do as an attorney all the time is I call the hospitals and doctors and negotiate those bills down. Sometimes the bill is $10,000, and I call them and say, “Hey, I’m sorry, we can only pay $2,000.” Another thing we have to really be careful with is some of these bills go to collections. Obviously, it’s no fun to go to collections, especially if you’re in an accident and it’s not your fault because these collections can mess up your credit for your entire life. So, to avoid collections, there are a few things we advise our clients to do. The main thing is to make sure you pay minimum balances, even if it’s only $15/month. Typically, if you’re paying a minimum balance every month, they will not send your bills to collections.
This part of the process is complicated, so if you have any questions, if you’re nervous about bills, or if your providers are trying to send you to collections, we highly recommend you call a personal injury attorney. This is what we do all day long. We are here to help you get your bills paid. We’re here to help you so you can focus on getting better. We deal with the paperwork, we deal with making sure the money gets taken care of. If you have any questions, please call an attorney, we’re on your team, and we’re here to help.