How Medical Bills Are Paid After an AccidentPosted on: August 5, 2021
Wondering how you can pay for those doctor visits?
This is how medical bills are paid after an accident.
After an accident that causes you serious bodily harm, there is no replacement for the time required to heal—and no way to hurry the recovery process.
But while you are focused on getting better, one of the most frightening things to see, sometimes even more than the damage to your car or even yourself, is the size of your medical bills. Things like doctor visits, X-rays, prescriptions, ambulance rides, hospital stays, physical therapy, and more can accumulate and feel like they are getting out of hand.
If your injuries are extensive or severe enough, these bills may even threaten to dismantle or bankrupt your life savings.
So what are you supposed to do?
How Medical Bills Are Paid After an Accident
In Florida, the most common method of paying medical bills after a car accident is by using your Personal Injury Protection (PIP) coverage, which will help pay for your medical bills even if you are at fault for the accident. You are required to use your PIP coverage even if you are not at fault for the crash.
The law requires that every licensed driver carry at least $10,000 in PIP coverage on their auto insurance, which covers:
- 80% of accident-related medical bills (up to $10,000),
- 60% of accident-related lost wages, and
- $5,000 in death benefits.
When you seek treatment following your accident, your medical providers will submit bills to the PIP carrier (typically your insurance company), and will be paid directly on 80% of the balance. PIP pays two times the Medicare rate at 80%.
Once the insurance company has paid $10,000 in benefits, it will consider your PIP coverage to be exhausted. This doesn’t mean that your doctor can no longer treat you. And you should consult with a qualified attorney to discuss your options for continued treatment.
But who pays the remaining 20%?
When PIP Runs Out
The standard PIP coverage will only pay 80% of your medical bills and only up to $10,000. How will you pay for the remaining 20% balance? And what if your bills exceed $10,000?
MedPay, or Medical Payment Coverage, ensures that 100% of your medical bills will be paid (up to the limit on your policy). For instance, if you elect to carry $5,000 in MedPay coverage, your medical bills will be covered up to $15,000 ($10,000 in PIP, and $5,000 in MedPay).
The only catch? Unlike PIP, MedPay coverage is optional. And most people do not purchase it.
If You Don’t Have MedPay Coverage
If you don’t have MedPay, your next step would be to submit your medical bills to your health insurance carrier.
However, if you have found yourself in this situation, you might have trouble paying co-pays (especially if you’re only collecting 60% of your paycheck). You might also have realized that your insurance company has started to play hardball with you over the amount of your bills.
If another party was at-fault for the accident, you have another option open to you: attempt to recover money from the at-fault party. A good personal injury attorney can help you with this.
If You Have No Auto Insurance
In the event that you were involved in an auto accident and did not have an active insurance policy at the time, we may still be able to get you the medical treatment you need without paying anything out of pocket.
Beers and Gordon can provide your doctor with a Letter of Protection. This will allow your doctor to treat you even though you may not have any medical (PIP) coverage through an active auto insurance policy.
The Letter of Protection ensures that the doctor’s bill will be paid upon the resolution of your case.
Don’t allow the lack of insurance to interfere with getting the medical treatment you need. Let Beers and Gordon assist you in making sure your medical bills are covered without having to pay anything out of pocket.
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If You Have No Health Insurance
Health insurance is expensive, and many people cannot afford it and do not work for a business that assists in paying for health insurance. So, what happens if you do not have it and the $10,000 in PIP benefits is gone?
Again, you can use the agreement called a Letter of Protection. This will allow your doctor to treat you even though you may not have any other medical insurance coverage.
Most doctors will work with the attorneys at Beers & Gordon with this agreement in place because those doctors know that our firm practices with integrity and protects any reasonable billing.
Therefore, don’t allow the lack of health insurance to interfere with getting the medical treatment you need. Let Beers and Gordon assist you in making sure your medical bills are covered without having to pay anything out of pocket.
Let Beers & Gordon Help
Recovering from your injuries is a long and arduous process. You shouldn’t have to worry about how medical bills are paid after an accident, but instead focus on how you can best recover.
While you are focused on recovery, allow us to work with your providers, your auto insurance company, and your health insurance company to ensure the bills are being paid.
Our firm always strives to ensure that our clients’ medical bills are handled in a timely manner and are paid for by the proper party.
As an additional service, we will work with all of the providers and negotiate lower balances on all of your outstanding bills. We are one of the hardest working firms out there working to reduce these balances to maximize your recovery. While this work does not earn us extra fees, every dollar saved on a balance is a dollar in your pocket.
Please be aware that if medical bills are either neglected or improperly handled, this could result in bills going to collections, thereby damaging your credit. Call for free advice concerning how to handle your medical bills.
Jim Gordon earned his Juris Doctorate from the University of Nebraska in 1997, and two years later began working at a firm in Orlando handling insurance defense matters on cases involving vehicle accidents, negligence, product liability, and more. He established Beers & Gordon P.A. with David Beers in 2009 to represent the rights of people injured because of negligence. He is a member of the invitation-only National Trial Lawyers organization and the Million Dollar Advocates Forum.