Justin L. Wilson
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Dedicated to helping injury victims in the Henderson and Las Vegas area receive the settlement they deserve.

Whenever a car accident takes place and a claim is made, the first thing that an insurance carrier is going to do is perform a liability investigation. Even if the other driver admitted to being at fault, and apologized at the scene off the accident, the insurance company will not just accept that representation. Before they agree to do anything, they will want to speak with their driver. That interview may take weeks to do if the driver is hesitant to speak with their insurance company, or the driver may completely change their story during that interview and claim they did nothing wrong.

No matter what you believe should happen, the insurance for the defendant will not pay bills until liability is established, and that may take time. Even when it is fairly clear as to who caused the collision, insurance companies are always slow to move. Even when fault is clearly established the insurance company does not intend to simply make payments. They will wait until they have determined what is the value of the claim. That value is, to a great degree, determined by medical bills. So, how does a person pay for medical treatment, when the insurance company is not going to pay anything, but still wants to use medical treatment and time lost from work as their basis for deciding value. The answer is not always easy, but it is manageable.

Do I Have To Pay My Own Medical Expenses Up Front Following My Car Accident?

To be clear, following an injury in a car collision, you will need to cover your own medical expenses initially. How that is best managed really depends on a large number of facts and circumstances around the collision and the people involved. the three options used to pay for medical treatment are 1) Health Insurance; 2) Medical Payments Coverage or PIP; and 3) Medical Liens . This article will serve to explain and outline what these different coverages include, and will hopefully, help the reader understand how each Option contains both pros and cons of each option. As most are well aware Health Insurance coverage can apply after any type of accident. If you are injured in a car collision you can use your health insurance to cover an Emergency Room visit, MRI’s, X-rays and CT Scans. Health insurance can be particularly helpful for long emergency room visits, or where surgery becomes necessary. The benefit to health insurance is that most people have some form of health insurance, including those covered by Medicaid or Medicare.

If you do have health insurance than you are not paying anything extra as it relates to the coverage, as it i something you already have. Further, emergency rooms, ambulances and other diagnostic facilities are used to health insurance, and always request your coverage information. Health insurance policies are given a lien, or an obligation to repay, on your claim. Meaning, when your case settles you will have to repay your health insurance carrier the money that they paid toward your medical bills. the trade off for this is that you have had your medical bills paid during your treatment, and the amount you will eventually repay will not be nearly the amount billed by the medical provider. One negative issue with health insurance, however, is the need for copayments. A person could easily find themselves in financial difficulty when they have to make all of the copayments for treatment that may be three to four visits a week.

Medical Payments Coverage

Trauma induced injuries require more treatment than a simple follow up visit. So, utilizing health insurance is not always the easiest, or best decision. Another option for medical treatment is Medical Payments Coverage. This is coverage found on your automobile insurance policy. Policies are not obligated to carry this provision so you may or may not have it. it is something you would pay an additional premium to obtain, the but the premium tends to be minimal in its cost, particularly when weighed with what it provides. Medical Payments Coverage provides medical payments for treatment related to an injury you receive in a car collision. Whether it is the emergency room visit or an ambulance bill. It can be used to cover copayments that your health insurance may require. The great benefit to this coverage is that whatever they pay, there is no obligation to pay the money back. That is a tremendous benefit to someone who needs medical treatment, but lacks the funds to pay co-pays along the way. The lack of a copayment can provide a great benefit to an injured person who has limited funds.

Yet most people do not even really know what they have for insurance coverage. They obtained their coverage online or through an agent, and often do not even know what their coverage provides. Each year you should take stock and evaluate your insurance coverage. Medical Payments coverage, while it may add to your premium, is a tremendous benefit to an individual and their family. It can be a true financial benefit to an injured victim, and is the most effective way to pay for medical treatment while a claim is waiting to be paid. Further, one of the big questions that this issue raises is, ‘what about my insurance rates”? The law in the State of Nevada does not allow your insurance company to raise your rates for using your medical payments coverage. So never worry about your insurance rates going up if you use your medical payments coverage. You have already been paying your premium, and your injury is precisely what you have been paying it for.

What If I Don't Have Health Insurance?

If you are injured and lack health insurance and medical payments coverage, then the third and final option is to utilize a medical lien. A medical lien is where the patient and the doctor agree that the medical provider will give treatment and that they will wait to be paid until the case settles. They are then paid from the settlement funds, rather than, getting paid along the way during medical treatment. The benefit to such a lien is that the injured person can get their treatment without having to come out of pocket financially for their treatment. While that is definitely a benefit, there are negatives to medical liens. The downside to a lien is that hospitals and ambulances tend not to accept them. Thus you find yourself back in a situation of using some other method to pay for that treatment to prevent to avoid damage on a credit report. There are ways to avoid this, but in order to do that, you should certainly consult an attorney.

Additionally, should the claim settle, you will receive less from the settlement as more money needs to be taken and used to pay off all liens you entered into. As a short and final note, if you were injured on the job, you can use your workers’ compensation benefits to assist in your treatment and recovery. Now this creates an entirely new area to address and Workers’ Compensation is an administrative and statutory system for dealing with and treating workers injured on the job. But, there are claims that raise both worker’s compensation claims and private personal injury claims. So always consult an attorney if you are injured by someone, while on the job. If you are injured following a car collision, or other accident, never feel or believe that there is no option for you. There are a number of ways to get medical treatment without getting destroyed financially. Should you have any further questions, always consult with an attorney to see what is the best course of action for your particular claim.

Have You Been Involved In A Henderson Or Las Vegas Car Accident?

If you've been injured in a car accident you need to speak with an experienced car accident lawyer as soon as possible. Contact us online or call our Henderson office directly at 702.405.6000 to schedule a free initial consultation.

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