If you are injured in an auto accident, even when the accident is not your fault and the other driver has insurance that will ultimately pay the value of your claim, including medical bills, you should still usually use your health insurance plan to pay those bills. There are a number of reasons for this. Here are three of them:
- 1. Most health insurance plans are regulated by state law. A health insurance plan that falls under Arizona law is usually not entitled to get the money back that it paid on your auto injury bills. So, you get to keep that part of the money at the end of your claim.
2. Some health insurance plans fall under federal regulation, rather than state law (ERISA). Many of those plans are entitled to get the money back that they paid on your auto accident injury-related bills. Even then, because they have negotiated a lower payment rate with your medical provider, and the auto insurance paying the claim should still consider the full bill, there can be a gap between what you collect from the auto insurance for that bill, and what you have to pay back to your healthcare plan. Again, that is additional money you get to keep.
3. Some cases, unfortunately, are lost for various reasons. If you did not have your health care plan pay your medical bills, you may have to pay out of your own pocket if are unsuccessful in your claim. Ouch!
There are other issues involved with reimbursement of medical bills or health insurance from an auto accident injury claim. Some of those issues become complex, but are important because they affect how much money you actually retain at the end of your case. You may wish to consult with a lawyer to identify and solve those issues. Nevertheless, you are usually wise to use your health care plan to pay the medical bills, and sort through the other issues later.
If you have further questions about your auto accident rights or any personal injury legal issue, please call our office at 480-733-6800 and ask to speak with Kevin Fine. Kevin brings with him 20 years of experience as a medical malpractice, personal injury and product liability attorney. His unique approach of educating his clients combined with his compassion, patience, intelligence, listening ability and commitment to ensure that his clients understand all their options has produced the results needed in personal injury cases.