At Silverman, McDonald & Friedman, our experienced Delaware personal injury lawyers have the experience to handle complicated injury claims to help you get back on your feet faster. Our knowledgeable legal team can serve clients from our Seaford, Newark, Wilmington, and Newark offices.
When you’re severely hurt in an auto accident or are injured on your motorcycle due to the negligence of another driver, you may be in for a long battle with the insurance company. Insurance carriers are not known for being reasonable when it comes to paying out large claims and if they believe they can put up a decent defense for their insured, they may risk taking it to trial. That may mean your life is in limbo for years. If you have substantial bills piling up because you couldn’t work due to a long recovery, you may be under a lot of stress trying to juggle financially.
How are medical bills paid after a car accident?
You actually have several options for trying to get your medical bills off your plate and lower your stress level after experiencing an injury from a negligent driver. Using these measures to make payments will help to protect you from being sent to collections and allow you to maintain healthy credit.
- Private health insurance. If you have health insurance, be sure that every medical provider who treated you or performed tests has that information for billing purposes. Even if it only pays a fraction of what you owe, it will help decrease your financial responsibility. Just be aware that many insurance companies will require subrogation, which is just reimbursing them from your settlement proceeds for the payments they made on your behalf.
- Medicare or Medicaid. If you receive benefits under either of these government plans, it may pay for your treatment in full. However, just like with private health insurance, the government may require reimbursement from your settlement proceeds.
- Payment negotiation. Medical facilities that provide costly emergency treatment are typically willing to reduce your bill if you simply contact the billing department and ask. Be prepared to pay the remaining balance in full in exchange for this bargain. Balances may be reduced by anywhere from 10% to 20% and when you’re facing a bill of thousands of dollars that can be a substantial discount.
- Charitable hardship programs. Another possibility is to see if the medical facility has a program that would provide you a discount. Often these programs are funded through charitable giving by donors intending to help patients defray medical costs. If you meet the criteria established by the program, you could see a reduction in your medical bill as high as 30%.
- Assignment. One option you could discuss with your personal injury attorney is whether the health care provider would be willing to have you and your attorney execute an assignment. It guarantees that you will pay that provider out of your insurance settlement once you receive the funds in exchange for putting your account on hold.
How does PIP work?
PIP is short for personal injury protection. It’s a benefit that auto insurance policies are required to include in Delaware. The fee for this coverage is a negligible portion of your monthly premium that few drivers pay attention to until they need it. PIP pays for medical and other injury-related costs up to the PIP coverage limit for the insured no matter who was at fault for the accident.
The damages that PIP may cover include:
- Medical expenses
- Funeral costs
- Lost income
- Childcare and household expenses
- Survivors’ Loss
To file a PIP claim, you can inquire with your insurance company when you open your claim but, in many cases, they will automatically mail you the forms to complete and submit.
What about Medpay?
Medpay is optional insurance coverage for Delaware residents. It’s just added protection that you can draw from if you become injured. Medpay only covers payment of medical bills for all drivers listed on the policy, members of the insured’s household and any injured passengers.
Incorporating Medpay can be a good strategic move for policyholders. Substantial medical bills can exhaust a large portion of your PIP coverage leaving nothing leftover to take care of other allowable expenses. Medpay can cover medical bills leaving more PIP funds to cover other necessities such as child care. Medpay also pays out regardless of fault or whose vehicle you were injured in.
The Delaware personal injury attorneys at Silverman, McDonald & Friedman understand the dire financial difficulties that victims who are severely injured can face. We work hard to make you whole again so that you and your family can enjoy life again. To schedule your free case evaluation in our Seaford, Newark or Wilmington, call 302-888-2900, or reach out to us through our contact page.
Attorney Jeffrey S. Friedman joined Silverman, McDonald & Friedman in 2001. He graduated from Widener University School of Law, and is admitted to practice law in Delaware and Pennsylvania, and in several Federal Circuit courts. He areas of concentration include auto accident and workers’ compensation cases. Read more about Attorney Friedman here.