No matter what type of car accident you’re involved in, dealing with the aftermath can often be overwhelming. If you were injured in a collision, receiving medical care is the most important step. Your safety and the safety of the other involved parties should be the main priority.
But what if you need medical treatment and you don’t have health insurance? How will your expenses be paid for? If you were not at fault for the accident, you have several options to cover your medical bills. A personal injury lawyer can go over these options with you and will help you decide which course of action is best for your personal situation and needs.
Let’s take a look at a few of your choices.
“Med Pay” Insurance Coverage
Immediately following an accident, you are responsible for paying your own medical bills. Even when it’s clear that the person who hit you is at fault, the law doesn’t require them to pay for your accrued expenses. Fortunately, the law does require them to pay you damages to settle a lawsuit.
Regardless, you have medical bills adding up and their payments are due now. What can you do? One option is medical payment, or “med pay,” insurance coverage. Under “med pay” coverage, the injured person’s medical bills will be paid for up to the insured’s policy limits.
Oftentimes, the at-fault person’s “med pay” auto insurance coverage is less than $10,000. If you’ve ever visited an emergency room, you know that bills can add up to this amount very quickly. Either way, you should find out if the person at-fault has this type of coverage so at least some of your bills can be paid for. After your bills exceed the insured’s policy limits, you’re responsible for paying the rest.
Health Care Provider Payment Arrangements
Another option is to work out payment arrangements with your health care provider. Most physicians know that not everyone who comes through their doors will be insured. In these cases, they may be willing to work out a payment plan.
In scenarios where the person seeking treatment is not at fault for their injuries, the provider may ask them to sign a personal injury lien. This binding contract states that the patient promises to pay the bills using the proceeds from their personal injury settlement or verdict. So, once a case is settled and compensation is won for your injuries and damages, your personal injury lawyer is required to pay the physician first before you receive any money from the case.
Another way to have your medical bills covered is through a federal health insurance program like Medicaid. Let’s say you lost your health insurance and/or job as a direct result of the collision. Under these circumstances, you may qualify for Medicaid.
This program is designed for low-income people. It is not a charity. However, if you believe you may qualify for this type of coverage, contact West Virginia’s Medicaid office. If you do qualify, it’s possible that some of your past bills, as well as your future bills, will be paid for.
Consult a Personal Injury Lawyer
Seeking coverage for your medical bills is stressful, especially when you don’t have health insurance. The dedicated attorneys at Stewart Bell, PLLC will work diligently to get you the coverage you deserve. Contact us today so we can help you deal with the aftermath of your accident.