Answering Your Frequently Asked Medical Bill Payment Questions
Who is responsible for paying my doctor’s bills?
Whether it relates to an accident or not, the patient is always responsible to the medical provider for the charges for the treatment the patient receives. For this reason, it is important that you make use of any insurance coverage available to you, even if you believe that someone else is at fault for your injuries and should have to pay for it. You should use your own private healthcare insurance, Medicaid, or Medicare, if accepted by the provider. Additionally, you may have medical payments coverage (aka “med pay”) under your vehicle insurance that can cover medical expenses up to a certain limit. Making sure that your bills are paid as early as possible, and not waiting for your claim against the at fault party to resolve, will keep the bills out of collection.
Ultimately, regardless of who first pays the bills, an injured person has the right to seek recovery of the full cost of the medical treatment they received as a result of an accident from an at-fault party or their insurance company.
What if I don’t have health insurance?
Many doctors that specialize in treating injured patients understand that a patient may only be able to pay for necessary medical treatment after money is recovered from the at fault party. These doctors will provide medical treatment to the patient, but rather than expecting immediate payment for their services, they will place a lien on your case. The lien entitles the medical provider to seek payment out of the proceeds of a settlement or judgment recovery.
If you need treatment and don’t have medical insurance, ask your doctor if they would consider placing a lien on your case in order for them to give you the treatment you need. Our office can help provide the doctor with the necessary information for them to place a lien.
If my bills were covered by my own insurance, what are my responsibilities if my case settles?
If your insurance company paid for any part of your medical bills, they may have a right to be paid back out of any settlement or judgment recovery. The right of an insurance company to recover their payments (called “subrogation”) is usually contained within the terms of your insurance policy. In the case of Medicaid or Medicare, the subrogation rights of those government programs to recover their payments is written into law.
It is important to consider and properly address the rights that any insurance company or government programs may have against your settlement; not doing so can put your benefits in jeopardy, and subject you to liability. Our Chicago personal injury lawyers customarily omit our clients with making sure their liens are addressed and after are successful in getting the claimed amounts reduced.
Hiring an Experienced Personal Injury Law Firm is Key
The attorneys at Morici, Longo & Associates have decades of experience representing injured people and making sure that their clients’ medical bills are handled properly, and that they receive full compensation for their injuries. If you have been injured by someone else's negligence and are looking for representation, call or fill out the form on website to schedule a consultation.