Car accidents are extremely stressful for victims and their families. There are so many issues to deal with after a major car crash. Certainly none are more important than the health and safety of the victim.
The absolute last thing anyone wants to think about are the complex questions involving medical bills, North Carolina insurance law and a legal process called “subrogation.” The following will provide some basic information on what you can expect from the hospital’s billing department after a car accident. For more detailed information that will address the specific issues involved in your case, please reach out to an experienced North Carolina car accident lawyer.
How Car Crash Injury Claims Are Different from Other Injury Claims
From the perspective of the hospital, car accidents present some unique challenges. These claims are different from most other types of injury claim. The primary reason for this is because there are especially complex insurance questions that must be resolved. Medical providers need to determine how the many different insurers will be billed.
Adding an Auto Accident to an Injury Adds More Parties
If a victim comes into the emergency room for an illness, the hospital generally needs to consider only the patient’s health insurance coverage. However, if the victim comes into the hospital after an auto accident, other insurers will likely be added to the mix. Further, the medical provider may need to determine if the victim has MedPay coverage, personal injury protection (PIP) or both.
The Victim – Not the Hospital – Is Paid Directly by the Insurance Company
Car accident victims need to remember the following important detail: the insurance company will usually pay the victim, not the hospital. Therefore, it is the victim’s responsibility to deal with paying the hospital. If you fail to pay your health care provider for your car accident related treatment, you may have a hospital lien placed against your settlement.
What You Need to Know about Hospital Liens
Hospital liens, also known as medical liens, are filed against a person in order to seek payment for medical services that have been provided. In some cases, a hospital may take the action of filing a lien against a car accident victim.
Generally, these liens are filed specifically against an injury settlement offer. It is the accident victim and not the medical provider who will receive a check from the insurance company in most cases. This can set up a stressful and confusing issue for victims.
The good news is that an attorney can help sort out such matters. In fact, your attorney might even be able to negotiate with the hospital in order to get it to reduce or release any lien against your settlement. Ultimately, if you have been seriously injured in a North Carolina auto accident, you need professional legal assistance.
Please do not hesitate to contact the compassionate car accident attorneys at Riddle & Brantley, LLP today. Our team has offices in Raleigh, Goldsboro, Jacksonville and Kinston and we represent victims throughout the state of North Carolina.