Health Insurance, Hospitals, and Personal Injury Claims: The Basics
Anyone searching for a top personal injury lawyer North Miami Beach FL has to offer might already know that personal injury lawsuits can be complicated. When a person seeks compensatory damages after an accident, those payments will likely include medical costs from the injury or illness.
As an experienced personal injury lawyer North Miami Beach FL can provide will likely know, evaluating medical costs after a serious injury can be overwhelming and complicated. Injured claimants might end up paying more money than they are obligated to pay.
When an individual sustains an injury that requires medical treatment in a hospital, this person should be covered by an insurance policy. The insurance company providing this policy will likely have an agreement with the hospital, whereby the two institutions agree to work together. Many health insurance plans do not provide full coverage for all types of medical treatment, as a personal injury lawyer North Miami Beach FL trusts will likely explain.
Say, for example, a patient requires an x-ray in the hospital after an accident. The total cost of the x-ray might be $170, but the insurance company might have an agreement with the hospital that lowers the cost down to $100. The regular cost of $170 for an x-ray would still apply to patients who are not covered under that particular insurer.
The insurer will also have another agreement with the patient where the patient agrees to cover 30% of the insurer-hospital contract (which would be $100 in this case). Therefore, the insurer would agree to pay $70 and the patient would pay $30, totaling the contract cap of $100.
There’s one problem: The hospital is still left with $70 that neither the patient nor the insurer is legally bound to pay.
When an individual suffers a severe injury or illness, the medical costs are often much higher than in this scenario, as any personal injury lawyer North Miami Beach FL trusts might know. It is common for an accident victim to be left with a bill far higher than $30 — sometimes in the thousands of dollars. A personal injury settlement can help cover the necessary costs that the patient owes. However, some hospitals in the past have been known to request more money from the patient if he/she is awarded a large settlement. Instead of requesting just $30 from the patient, the hospital might request $100 from the patient to account for the $70 that it “lost” in its contract with the insurer.
This is not necessarily something that all personal injury claimants will encounter. Some states have also made this practice illegal. However, it is a practice that all claimants should be wary of.
How Can a North Miami Beach FL Personal Injury Lawyer Help?
A local personal injury lawyer in North Miami Beach FL may be able to help claimants avoid this problem. During a lawsuit or settlement negotiation, the injured party might arrange to have the hospital directly collect the money that is owed. Working with an experienced lawyer could be incredibly beneficial: not only could a lawyer work on negotiating a fair settlement, but a competent legal team may be more likely to catch any incorrect claims made by a hospital.
If you’ve been injured in an accident, you might want to consider hiring a lawyer for this reason. To speak with a top personal injury lawyer North Miami Beach FL, contact a law firm today.