It depends on many factors, but if you’re injured in a car accident that wasn’t your fault, you should always seek treatment first using your own health insurance. A proven personal injury trial attorney can get to work helping you navigate getting reimbursed for medical bills and lost income right away.
Is It Fair for Your Health Insurance to Pay for the Harm Caused by Someone Else?
The answer is always ‘yes.’ Often, the first source of confusion happens in the ER when emergency room personnel or doctors treating you may ask for your car insurance information This is standard policy at most health care facilities when injuries are the result of a car accident. Regardless of where the confusion comes from, the answer is clear—you should always use your own health insurance when receiving accident-related treatment from car accident injuries. Here’s why:
Car Insurance Companies Never Pay Medical Bills Directly to Hospitals or Health Care Providers Directly
They only pay you as the claimant when and if there is a settlement. This process, especially if you try and go it alone, can take months or even years. During this time period, unpaid bills can go into collections and have a negative impact on your credit. If the claim is denied for some reason or the settlement is delayed beyond the time period your health insurance company allows you to submit bills, you could find yourself responsible for paying the entire amount owed. Promptly submitting your bills to your health insurance company avoids this scenario entirely.
Typically, the Defendant Does Not Have to Pay Your Medical Bills on an On-Going Basis
You are generally responsible for the payment of your medical bills as you incur them. Even if the person who injured you is clearly at fault, the law doesn’t require him or her to continue to pay your bills on an on-going basis. If the person is found at fault in a court of law, they must pay your damages. A large part of those damages will be your medical treatment—especially if you’ve sustained horrific injuries or permanent disabilities. But the defendant is not required to pay your medical bills as they come in.
What About Car Accidents in a ‘No-Fault’ State Like Florida?
No-fault means your car insurance company will pay some or all of your medical bills if you’re in an accident—regardless of who’s at fault—up to the limits of your insurance. After your medical bills exceed the limits of your coverage, that’s when your health insurance company, Medicaid or Medicare helps with the balance. For whatever’s leftover that is not covered, you would have to negotiate payment arrangements with your health care provides.
That’s why it’s so important to hire an experienced personal injury attorney if you’re in a car accident that isn’t your fault. It can help ensure that you’re not the one left paying dearly in two ways—first from your injuries, and secondly from the financial burdens of outstanding medical bills.
If you’re involved in an auto accident, it’s important to seek medical attention and the advice of proven, trial-tested personal injury attorneys like those at Fernandez & Hernandez Attorneys At Law. We can work with your or the at-fault driver’s insurance company to make sure you receive the damages you deserve. You can reach us for advice 24/7 by calling 813.755.9500. Hablan español.