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    Who Pays for Medical Bills After a Car Accident?

The person or persons responsible for causing, contributing to, or increasing your bodily injuries before, during, and after an accident are the ones legally liable to pay your medical bills after a car collision. The process of getting compensation after a car accident is challenging at times. If you got hurt in an auto accident, you might have started to think about who will pay for your treatment.

Filing claims and getting compensation for your personal injury can pay medical bills. However, these are all future events that will not pay for your current medical costs. Let’s explore what you must know if you’re dealing with a deplorable insurance company and are stuck holding the bag after an accident.

Are Medical Bills Included in a Bodily Injury Award?

Bodily injury claims, “personal injury claims,” and “PI awards” are usually synonymous. Medical bills are often aggregated into the settlement amount with the lost earnings, the loss of consortium if appropriate, and other incidental expenses like purchasing wheelchair-accessible vehicles.

Chances are, if you settle your personal injury claim, your settlement may include all or only one of these kinds of damages. It is usually a good idea to attempt to determine what recovery is provided for what in the interest of tax reasons, repayment, and determining the rights to recovery on other expenses incurred.

Can You File a Personal Injury Claim Against the At-Fault Driver Following an Accident

So, who pays for bills following a car accident? The answer is not so simple as there are a lot of factors, like the type of accident, the state you live in, and the type of insurance coverage, which impact how your medical bills get paid.

Does the Defendant Have to Pay Medical Bills on an Ongoing Basis?

Unless it is a car accident involving Med Pay or no-fault states, you are responsible for any accident that occurs and any bills that follow the accident. Car accident victims almost always have this misconception that the negligent party will bear the medical expenses on an ongoing basis, but that is not usually the case.

If you got injured due to someone else’s fault, the law does not require the defendant to pay for your medical bills as and when they come. But the law does require the defendant to pay lump-sum compensation that includes medical costs as part of the damages.

The medical bills can start to pile up and may need to be paid before the victim receives any compensation from the negligent party. This can put a tremendous financial strain on the victim and their families. Our personal injury lawyer can help you understand the law and provide you with the legal options to move forward.

Who Pays for Medical Bills If the Victim Has Private Health Insurance?

Many insurance companies offer private insurance, and car accident victims with private insurance or Medicaid can file claims when they receive the medical bills. The insurance company is then responsible for paying for those, but the deductibles and coverage will depend on their insurance policy.

There can be situations where the victim’s insurance policy may not cover certain healthcare services, resulting in a claim denial by the insurance company. Once they deny the claim properly, the car accident victim must pay for the medical bills from their pocket unless they have Med Pay with their auto policy.

Health insurers’ refusing to cover any bills under their coverage is also referred to as “bad faith practice,” Our attorneys have vast experience in dealing with such situations. Victims facing bad faith practices where insurers deny claims without proper reasoning can establish an attorney-client relationship with our law firm and let our legal experts deal with the insurers.

Who Pays for Medical Treatment If the Victim Has Med Pay?

Med Pay coverage is insurance that kicks in after a car accident victim. The insurance pays for medical bills up to the policy limits. The good thing about Med Pay is that there are no deductibles; however, once the victim reaches the policy limits with their medical bills, the responsibility for paying medical bills shifts back to the victim.

Some drivers have Med Pay coverage on top of their health insurance to cover the high deductibles or health insurance co-payments associated with the latter form of insurance. For example, if a victim has a medical bill of $100,000 with a $6,000 deductible, the health insurance will pay for the medical bills, but the victim will need to pay $6,000 out of their pocket to cover the deductible. The auto insurer will spend the first $6,000 if the victim has Med Pay.

What If a Car Accident Victim Does Not Have Insurance?

If a car accident victim has no health insurance, they are responsible for paying the medical treatment costs from their pocket. Failure to pay medical bills can result in your case getting sent to a debt collector.

Some medical providers offer individuals the opportunity to spread the treatment costs over several years, easing the financial burden on the victim.

Medical Bills in a No-fault State

No-fault states require drivers to have Personal Injury Protection (PIP) or no-fault insurance covering partial or complete medical bills. PIP provides coverage against injuries sustained in a car accident regardless of who is at fault. Once the bills reach the policy limits, paying for medical treatment costs transfers to the victim’s health insurance company.

Can a Victim Get a Medical Lien?

Many states in the country offer medical lien protection, which means that medical providers provide medical services in exchange for a lien on the personal injury case verdict. When a personal injury victim has insufficient funds to pay for their treatment costs, the hospital may require them to sign a lien letter. The letter allows the hospital to recover payments from the compensation recovered.

There is no need for upfront payments for medical liens, but the medical provider will have to recoup the payments from the case winnings.

California is a fault-based state, so an injured person is responsible for paying their medical bills from a car accident. California requires drivers to have auto insurance with a minimum of $30,000 in bodily injury coverage per accident and a $5,000 minimum property damage liability. Car accident victims must file personal injury claims against the negligent party’s insurer to compensate for their losses.

Contact Ehline Law and Get a Free Consultation

Whether a health insurer or an auto insurance company, our attorneys have protected over 3,000 injured victims by recovering over $150 million for their losses.

We assist in protecting the rights of injured victims during the case and before filing claims. Our attorneys help locate a qualified and experienced lien doctor to care for you while we fight for fair compensation for your loss. If you got into a car accident that was not your fault, contact us at (213) 596-9642 and get a free consultation with a personal injury lawyer today. Contact us for more information on how we can help.

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Michael Ehline

Michael Ehline is an inactive U.S. Marine and world-famous legal historian. Michael helped draft the Cruise Ship Safety Act and has won some of U.S. history’s largest motorcycle accident settlements. Together with his legal team, Michael and the Ehline Law Firm collect damages on behalf of clients. We pride ourselves on being available to answer your most pressing and difficult questions 24/7. We are proud sponsors of the Paul Ehline Memorial Motorcycle Ride and a Service Disabled Veteran Operated Business. (SDVOB.) We are ready to fight.