Paying for Treatment After a Car Accident
If you were injured in a car wreck, one of the more pressing questions you may have is how to pay for medical treatment. You do not want to stick your health insurance company with medical bills, you do not want to pay out-of-pocket, and you want the at-fault driver to ultimately pay. Any question related to these points is valid, as it could be the difference in thousands of dollars going to you instead of into a car insurance company's pocket.
Sending Bills to Health Insurance
If you have health insurance, be sure your medical bills are submitted through that company, regardless of whether it is BlueCross, Medicare, Medicaid, or any other private health insurance provider. Some treaters will attempt to bill the at-driver's car insurance company. The reason for this is that (1) the treaters will likely get paid more and (2) the car insurance company likely pays less than what they would owe if you requested the payment from them. Here's why:
Your health insurance contract likely states (summarizing) that it will pay for any reasonable and necessary medical treatment but, if a third party is at fault for your injuries and you receive money from that third party, you have to reimburse the health insurance company for that treatment. Lucky for you, health insurance companies have contracts with medical providers, which essentially state "you treat my insureds and we will promptly pay an adjusted amount for the treatment." This benefits you in the following example:
you are injured by a drunk driver and go to the hospital
the hospital performs $1,000 worth of medical treatment
your health insurance company adjusts the bill down to $200, with you paying an additional $50 co-pay
at the conclusion of your case, you send your entire medical bill to the car insurance company for reimbursement
out of the $1,000 you receive, you pay your health insurance company the $200 they initially paid
As you can tell, this benefits you much more than just having the car insurance company pay for your treatment. Just note that you may have to follow up with your providers to ensure they have billed the health insurance company. At our firm, we do that for you, as well as fight for reductions on the amounts owed to your health insurance company and other medical providers.
Other Options to Pay for Treatment
Some injured people need a different doctor for a variety of reasons:
your physician cannot see you for weeks or months
your health insurance company will not agree to a certain treatment
you have no health insurance
you cannot afford the out-of-pocket expenses
In these situations, you may be able to treat on something called a "Letter of Protection" or "LOP." An LOP is a contract signed between a patient and a medical provider, in which the patient promises to pay the provider at the conclusion of the car-accident case from the funds obtained. Though not the best option for treatment, this is sometimes the only feasible way for victims to get the treatment they need without going broke.
Andrew Can Help
Whether it involves getting a health insurance company to pay a bill, getting into a doctor that will treat you without taking every dime out of your pocket, or reducing medical liens to increase your payout at the conclusion of the case, Andrew is here to help. Give him a call to discuss whether entering an attorney-client relationship is the best next step.