If you get injured, the first thing you should do is seek proper medical treatment. Minor injuries can get worse if they are not treated, leading to increased medical costs down the road. Serious injuries may require extensive treatment, including surgery, follow-up visits, physical therapy, and even lifelong care. Unfortunately, medical care can get expensive even with insurance coverage. If you were injured, you may be wondering who will cover the initial medical expenses. Even if someone else was at fault, it may take months or years before they end up paying for your damages.
Initial Medical Expenses
If you have health insurance, your insurance company may pick up most of the initial costs. However, if you don't have health care, you may be responsible for paying the upfront cost of care until the person responsible for your injury is held accountable. If you are concerned about who will pay your medical expenses, you should speak to an attorney as soon as possible to make sure you are fully compensated for your injuries.
If You Have Insurance
If you do have health care coverage, either through your job, the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare), Medicare, or Medicaid, your insurance company may cover most of the costs of your medical treatment. However, even with insurance, you may have to pay for copays, out-of-pocket expenses, or receive a bill for treatment that is not covered by your insurance company. For a serious injury, these costs can add up quickly.
If your injury may have been caused by someone else, or another party is responsible, your insurance company may seek reimbursement from the responsible party. This is known as ‘subrogation.' Subrogation is the process where your insurer seeks reimbursement from another insurance company based on who is liable for damages. Insurance companies may dispute which company is responsible for payment and even take legal action to require the other to pay the claim.
Even if you have insurance, an insurance provider may deny your claim, or only pay a portion of your damages. You may be able to appeal the decision, although you may decide that legal action is the best way to make sure you are compensated. Your insurance company can deal directly with the insurance company representing the at-fault party to make sure your initial medical expenses are paid for and to ensure future medical care will also be covered.
Automobile Accident Injuries
Some of the most common injuries involve car accidents. The law in Pennsylvania requires drivers to carry a minimum level of liability insurance. Medical expenses from car accident injuries may be covered by your insurance company or the insurance company of the other driver. The insurance company responsible for coverage may depend on what kind of insurance you have.
The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania is known as a choice-no-fault state. This means that drivers have a choice between choosing a traditional car insurance plan, or a no-fault plan. Under a no-fault insurance policy, your own insurance company will cover your damages, regardless of who is at fault for the accident. Under a traditional insurance plan, you can go after the other driver for your injuries if they are determined to be at fault for causing the accident. Pennsylvania also requires first party “Personal Injury Protection" or "PIP." This provides no-fault coverage for the policy holder's own medical bills.
If you are involved in an accident that is caused by another driver, but they are uninsured or they don't have enough insurance, you may have to file a personal injury lawsuit to seek damages. However, if the individual does not have much money, you may not recover much from the lawsuit. In these cases, uninsured motorist coverage or underinsured motorist coverage may protect you in the event that the other driver does not have enough liability coverage.
Workplace injuries are generally covered by some type of insurance scheme. Employers are required to provide workers' compensation coverage for their employees. If an employee is injured on the job, workers' compensation should pay for their initial medical bills. However, in some cases, an employer or their insurance provider may deny a worker's claim. This may be because they do not believe the injury occurred on the job, or they claim the employee was under the influence of drugs or alcohol at the time. Without workers' compensation, the individual may be left with expensive medical bills and may not be able to earn a paycheck.
If your workers' compensation claim is denied, you should contact an attorney immediately to make sure your medical bills are paid, and you can get benefits for being out of work.
What If I Don't Have Insurance?
If you do not have any medical insurance or your insurance does not cover your medical care, you may be left to deal with expensive medical bills. If your injury is not covered under an auto insurance policy or workers' compensation, you may be forced to contact a lawyer to make sure your medical bills get paid by the person who caused the injury.
The good news is that in most personal injury cases you can hire an experienced attorney with no upfront costs to you. Your Philadelphia personal injury attorney may offer you a free consultation to hear your situation. They may also be able to offer their services on a contingent fee basis. Your attorney may be able to handle your case at no cost to you unless you win your case.
Philadelphia Personal Injury Attorneys
If you have been injured in an accident, call your Philadelphia personal injury attorneys. If you are worried about the high cost of medical treatment and concerned about who is going to pay for your injuries, the law firm of Gilman & Bedigian may be able to help. Our attorneys have years of experience dealing with personal injury and medical malpractice cases in Philadelphia. We will negotiate for a full settlement to cover all of your costs and injuries and fight for your rights, to make sure you get the compensation you deserve. Please do not hesitate to contact us today for a free consultation.