Helpful Information

How Medical Bills Are Paid After A Car Accident

Posted by Harlene Labrum | Feb 18, 2021

 Suffering injuries in a car accident can be physically painful, emotionally distressing, and extremely expensive. If you are wondering how your medical bills are paid after a car accident, it can come as a shock to find out that your medical bills are first and foremost your own responsibility. This holds true even if another driver negligently caused your accident and injuries. If you have health insurance then most of your medical expenses will be covered. If you do not have health insurance, you may be able to negotiate with your health providers to wait with any payments until you receive a settlement from the at-fault party's insurance.

If you experienced any physical or psychological injuries as a result of a car accident through no fault of your own, dealing with medical expenses can be confusing, challenging, and complex. The car accident lawyers at Labrum Law Firm can help. Contact us to find out how to settle your medical bills and what your legal options are for recovering compensation. We can answer all your questions and potentially help you get compensation from a negligent driver. Call us now for a free consultation to determine whether you have a claim: (615) 338-9500.

Establishing Fault in Car Accidents

Car accidents can be extremely expensive. Figures from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) show that the costs for medical care and productivity losses from car accidents exceeded $75 billion in the year 2017 alone.

Establishing fault is crucial in a car accident. If you caused your own accident, you will be responsible for your own expenses and medical bills. However, if someone else caused your accident, injuries, and monetary losses, you could potentially hold them responsible and recover compensation for your economic and non-economic damages.

An at-fault driver could be responsible for a car crash in a number of ways. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), driver errors and accidents can happen due to:

  • Driving drunk
  • Speeding
  • Driving distracted
  • Drowsy driving
  • Driving generally recklessly

Proving fault of a driver can be challenging, particularly if several vehicles are involved in an accident with potentially several negligent drivers. However, an experienced car accident lawyer knows how to gather compelling evidence to prove another driver's negligence.

When another individual is responsible for your car accident, the process of recovering damages from their insurance can be straightforward. However, another driver is not always to blame for your accident, and other at-fault parties can potentially include:

Driver's Employer

When a driver was on work time while causing your accident, their employer may be responsible or share responsibility for your accident and damages. This often occurs with delivery drivers, truck drivers, or even ridesharing drivers.

Local Government Agencies

If your accident happened as a result of poorly maintained road surfaces or a broken traffic signal, you could potentially hold a local government entity responsible for any damages. Local governments typically have the responsibility to maintain roadways as well as traffic signs and signals. However, holding a local government to account can be challenging and may not always be possible. An experienced car accident attorney can advise you on whether you might have this option in your specific case.

Car Manufacturer

In some cases, an accident victim may be able to hold a car manufacturer responsible for their injuries and losses if a faulty car part caused an accident or contributed to a crash.

Establishing another party's fault can require a considerable amount of evidence and be a challenging as well as lengthy progress. Labrum Law Firm can analyze your accident and help you understand all of your legal rights.

Examples of How Medical Bills Can Get Paid

If you are injured in an accident that was caused by another driver, you may have expenses such as hospital stays, specialist visits, surgeries, medical devices, rehabilitation therapies, and medication costs, and more. Medical bills are paid after a car accident in certain ways which can include the following steps:

Submitting Bills to the Health Insurance

Your first step will be to submit your bills to your own personal health insurance. However, you may still have to pay a deductible and your health insurance might not cover all your medical expenses. In some cases, you might be able to negotiate delayed payments with your medical providers and pay the remaining expenses after you received a settlement from a personal injury lawsuit. A car accident attorney can potentially help to arrange this with your doctors and medical providers. 

Filing a Personal Injury Lawsuit

Once on the road to recovery, you might wish to file a personal injury lawsuit in order to receive damages from the negligent driver if the insurance company fails to provide you with a full or fair settlement. Your car accident attorney can assist you and fight for an adequate settlement in a court of law that should include all your past, present, and future medical costs. Your attorney will typically ask for the full amount of medical costs, regardless of whether some of your costs were paid by your health insurance at a discounted rate. A fair settlement can also include other compensation, including but not limited to:

  • Income losses (both current and expected future loss of income)
  • Pain and suffering
  • Property damage (to both your vehicle and the contents inside)
  • Out-of-pocket expenses
  • Loss of life enjoyment

Reimbursing the Health Insurance Company

Once you receive a settlement that covers all your medical expenses, your car accident attorney can notify your health insurance company of the settlement. The insurance company will typically request reimbursement for their costs in a process called “subrogation”. Subrogation can be quite complicated. An accident victim could potentially receive a settlement for medical bills that proves significantly higher than the actual amounts paid to medical providers. In some cases, the health insurance may have paid up to 20 or 30 percent less than the originally billed amount by medical providers. It is important to note that a car accident attorney may be able to negotiate with the insurance company and/or medical providers, potentially reducing the reimbursement amount further. This will allow victims to keep the difference that remains once any costs and attorney's fees have been paid.

Labrum Law Firm Can Fight for What You Deserve

The actions you take or do not take regarding your health care can influence how your medical bills are paid after a car accident. Without the assistance and legal protection of an experienced car accident attorney, you could risk leaving money on the table and missing out on some of the compensation you have a right to receive under the law. Call our experienced car accident lawyers at Labrum Law Firm today for a complimentary case review to determine whether you have a claim: (615) 338-9500.

About the Author

Harlene Labrum

Harlene is focused and passionate about helping those injured in car wrecks.  She earned her J.D. at Nashville School of Law and her Bachelor's degree at State University of New York at Albany, awarded with the highest GPA and high honors.  Harlene began her career in law as a personal injury par...

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