If you suffered severe injuries in a car accident in Arkansas, your medical bills and costs could be piling up. However, if another driver caused the accident, surely, they should be responsible for your expenses. But insurance settlements and personal injury settlements take time, sometimes years. How do these medical bills get paid in the meantime?
While it might seem obvious, any medical bills you receive for the medical care you receive after a car accident are your responsibility – even if you were not responsible for the accident. If your children were in the car, you are responsible for their bills as well. However, that does not mean you necessarily have to pay out-of-pocket. Your medical expenses could be covered by your health insurance or through your auto insurance. Below, one of our Fayetteville, AR car accident attorneys discusses how medical bills are paid.
Ken Kieklak, Attorney at Law, understands the fear and confusion that follows a car accident. In addition to physically recovering from your injuries, you need to pay for your medical care. If you are severely hurt, you could be out of work for months. While you could be compensated through a personal injury lawsuit, you are concerned about the present. Call (479) 316-0438 to schedule an appointment to discuss your legal options regarding your medical bills.
Medical Bills After a Car Accident in Arkansas
The important thing to note is, even if someone else caused the accident, it could take a long time before you see a financial settlement. Auto accident injury claims often take months or even years to resolve. Therefore, waiting on a potential settlement is not fiscally responsible. When it comes to paying your medical expenses after a car accident, you have several options: your health insurance or personal injury protection through your car insurance or paying the costs out of your pocket. If you have questions about how your medical expenses could be paid, contact our experienced Arkansas personal injury attorneys.
Your Personal Health Insurance
Most people who were involved in a car accident will turn to their health insurance to pay for their medical expenses. In many cases, a healthcare provider will require proof of insurance coverage before treating you. Very few doctors will treat car accident victims on the promise of being paid if and when a settlement is reached. Additionally, if you do not rely on your insurance and allow bills to go unpaid, it will severely impact your credit score.
If you do rely on your health insurance, your provider could decide to pursue a subrogation claim to recover for the treatment you received out of your award or settlement. The major hurdle facing your health insurance provider is the made-whole doctrine. Under this legal doctrine, an injured car accident victim must be fully compensated for their losses before an insurance company is permitted to seek recovery for its financial losses. Therefore, if you agree to a settlement or are awarded compensation through a personal injury lawsuit, you must have recovered your medical expenses, lost income, future treatment costs, future lost income, and pain and suffering before your health insurance company could file a subrogation claim. An Arkansas court will determine if you have been made whole or you could agree that you have been fully compensated.
Personal Injury Protection or Med Pay Insurance
If you are a motorist in Arkansas, your auto insurance company is required to offer Med Pay coverage. While insurance companies are mandated to make this additional coverage available, drivers are permitted to sign a waiver opting out of the coverage.
Med Pay is commonly referred to as personal injury protection (PIP) insurance. PIP offers no-fault insurance coverage for bodily injuries. Car accident victims with this coverage are entitled to file a claim with their insurance company. It does not matter who was to blame. However, if you have a pending insurance claim with an at-fault driver’s insurance provider or a personal injury lawsuit, it is still a smart idea to file a claim with your insurance company – settlements or verdicts could take a long time. Our dedicated Arkansas car accident attorneys will help maximize your compensation.
If you win your case or are offered a settlement, your car insurance is also permitted to file a subrogation claim. However, there are bound by the same made-whole doctrine that limits what your health insurance provider could recover.
Paying It Yourself
If you pay for your medical expenses and treatments out of your savings, you might be able to recover the costs if you reach a settlement or win a personal injury lawsuit. Medical treatment is expensive, so if you can, you should rely on your health insurance or PIP. However, even if you have insurance, you could still be required to pay deductibles and co-pays. It is important to keep a record of all your out-of-pocket expenses, including parking fees for doctor’s appointments and the cost of medication. If you receive a settlement or a favorable verdict, you could be reimbursed for any money you spent on your medical care. When calculating the potential damages, our Bentonville personal injury attorneys will include any out-of-pocket costs your incurred.
Contact Our Experienced Arkansas Car Accident Attorneys if You Have Been Hurt in a Crash
The medical costs associated with a severe injury could be astronomical. While there are options to pay your medical bills, including health insurance and Med Pay, you still want to hold any responsible party liable for your damages and injuries. Whether you receive an insurance settlement or file a personal injury claim, it will take considerable time to receive your compensation. By calling Ken Kieklak, Attorney at Law, you can get the process started as soon as possible. Contact our Farmington car accident lawyers at (479) 316-0438 to begin your case.
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