After an accident, you may need medical care, which means you may receive bills for your doctor’s services. Your Houston traffic accident lawyer is here to help you negotiate an auto settlement to pay for these costs. However, bills will likely come in before you receive your settlement. Many people ask how this works and what they should do in the meantime. Here’s some information on how medical bills and your car accident claim works.
Talk to Your Houston Traffic Accident Lawyer About Car Accident Injuries and Medical Costs
After an accident, you should always seek medical attention. Often, adrenaline can prevent you from feeling the effects of an injury. Visiting a doctor can help you understand the extent of the damage from the accident. Also, it can help your Houston traffic accident lawyer fight for compensation for your medical costs. Unfortunately, many people wait until they feel pain after an accident to seek care. Often, insurance adjusters use this to try to lowball the settlement.
Some common injuries that occur during car accidents include knee injuries, back or spinal cord injuries, brain injuries, and broken bones. These auto accident injuries can lead to high medical costs. Here’s some information on common costs for these injuries:
- Knee injuries can lead to knee replacement surgery, which costs an average of $50,000
- Back or spinal cord surgery for injuries can cost over $150,000
- Even mild brain injuries result in an average of $85,000 in costs
- A broken arm can cost an average of $16,000 in medical costs
- A broken hip may cost upwards of $40,000
Therefore, your Houston traffic accident lawyer will take your medical costs into account for your case. This information will help them negotiate a Houston auto accident compensation settlement that covers your damages. It’s important to save information about any medical care you receive that is related to your car crash so we can send an accurate demands letter. For example, remember to keep receipts for any co-pays, prescriptions, or other things that your doctor recommends like crutches. This helps us get a good picture of how many medical expenses you actually have so we can negotiate with the insurance adjuster.
Medical Bills While You Wait for Houston Auto Accident Compensation Settlement
While your Houston auto personal injury claim is meant to reimburse you for car accident related damages, the insurance company won’t pay for bills as you receive them. Additionally, those bills affect your personal credit. So, what do you do for car accident injuries? First, seek treatment and provide your health insurance details to the doctor. It’s a common misconception that after a car accident, your medical insurance premiums will go up. Your health insurance is there to cover costs of your medical care, so you should use it until you receive your settlement.
In some cases, the clinic or hospital you go to after a car accident may try to dissuade you from using your health insurance for car crash injuries. This is because not billing your insurance company for your car accident injuries often means that they get a bigger share of your settlement money. However, you can and often should insist that they bill your medical insurance for your care.
The benefit of using your health insurance for car accident injuries is that the insurance company can negotiate discounts with the doctor or hospital. This often reduces costs by 50% or more. Therefore, using your health insurance can help pay for most of your care and also reduce the total amount. This can help your Houston traffic accident lawyer negotiate a settlement amount that will cover your medical costs and also your other damages.
Until the settlement, your Houston traffic accident lawyer will even cover your medical bills until we win your case. Therefore, you can focus on healing and recovering from your accident. This can help you cover costs until your settlement arrives and keep your medical bills out of collections.
Your Houston Traffic Accident Lawyer Helps Distribute Your Settlement
Once you reach a settlement amount with the insurance company, then your Houston traffic accident lawyer must distribute the funds to any liens on your settlement. These may include medical liens, which is basically when your doctor or medical facility says they’re owed for the care they provided after your car accident. For example, if you deferred some of your bills until your settlement came through, then you would likely have a medical lien that must be taken care of with some of the money from your settlement.
In addition, your health insurance company may be entitled to part of the settlement. This is a reimbursement of what they paid for your medical care. Many insurance policies have a clause in the agreement you sign that explains that they can seek reimbursement after you receive a settlement for an accident. So, for instance, say you needed an x-ray after your accident that cost $200 and your insurance covers 70% of those costs. After your settlement arrives, then they may ask to receive that $140 from the settlement amount. The idea behind this is that if someone is legally liable for your injuries, then your medical insurance shouldn’t be on the hook for the care you received related to that accident.
The insurance company generally sends your settlement check to your Houston traffic accident lawyer. This allows us to settle the liens for you. Then, by law, we must place this settlement amount in an escrow or trust account and disburse the funds to settle the liens. Once the liens are taken care of, then we send you the remaining balance for your settlement.
Talk to Your Houston Traffic Accident Lawyer About Your Case Today
At DeSimone, we’ve helped settle thousands of car accident injury cases. Our attorneys know the tricks insurance adjusters play to avoid paying for your damages. We’ll communicate with your adjuster on your behalf and help you get a fair settlement. If need be, we’ll fight for your rights in court to help you receive fair compensation. Call us today at (713) 526-0900 for a free case evaluation with our attorneys. We are here to serve you.