Dennis G. Steeves, Attorney at Law
2222 E State Street #G16, Rockford, IL 61104, Phone 815-979-4016
Personal Injury Cases
Medical Payments in Northern Illinois Personal Injury Cases
If you have been in an automobile accident or suffered some other personal injury through no fault of your own, you may expect the at fault insurance company, commonly known as the third party insurance company, to start paying your medical bills right away. A third party insurance company, however, will not pay any medical bills, pain and suffering or lost wages until a complete and global settlement has been agreed to. A settlement will not occur until you have reached maximum medical improvement (MMI). MMI is reached when a doctor declares that you have completely healed from your injuries or that there is nothing more medically that can be done. At that time all of the medical bills as well as lost wages can be tallied and a general idea of past and future pain and suffering can be made.
So the question is who pays the medical bills in the meantime. Generally these bills are paid by your health insurance company. Some automobile policies have a medical payment provision. This provision states that your own automobile insurance company will pay up to the specified amount in the policy provided they can determine that your injuries were in fact caused by the accident. If none of these options are available then you are liable for the medical bills until a settlement is reached.
Insurance companies who pay your medical bills or medical providers who are not being paid by any source will place a medical payment lien on your personal injury file. This lien assures them that once a settlement is reached then they will be paid all or some of the outstanding medical bills. Once an insurance company, whether it be your general health insurance company or your automobile insurance company paying a medical payment provision, has agreed to accept an amount from your settlement then you are not liable for any unpaid balance to them. However, if a medical provider has not been paid its entire amount for whatever reason, they may elect to require you to pay any deficiency.
When you have been injured in an automobile accident or suffer some other personal injury it is important to consult with an experienced attorney not only to protect your rights against the third party insurance company but also to protect your rights against your own medical payment providers or your medical treatment providers.
At Dennis Steeves Law Firm, an experienced attorney will negotiate with these entities and ensure that you are treated with the dignity and respect you deserve. Call us today at 815-979-4016 or fill out our on line contact form to schedule an appointment.