People who suffer from personal injury issues in Bergen County, New Jersey, may not have the means to cover their medical expenses. Those pursuing legal action do not always have the out-of-pocket funds or medical insurance needed to pay. Additionally, the person or group found guilty of causing the injuries cannot have their insurance pay medical bills as they occur.
So, how are personal injury settlements paid out? Can you still receive medical care? Yes, and experienced personal injury lawyers in New Jersey can help you find a workaround.
The attorneys at Aiello, Harris, Abate, Law Group PC have over 30 years of experience with personal injury cases. Our knowledge helps us tackle various types of personal injury cases. We know ways to help you receive your necessary medical treatment without worry.
Why Insurance Companies Do Not Pay Immediately
Most insurance companies will not pay medical expenses before the courts find their client guilty. Despite the severity of a personal injury or wrongful death, they want to avoid paying before receiving proof of fault. Moreover, they do not want to pay for medical bills on top of legal costs if they defend against the lawsuit.
Also, most insurance companies prefer making lump payments to a claim rather than fulfilling several payments. As such, they tend to wait until receiving a letter of demand, then settle the issue with a single payment.
Possible Ways to Pay or Hold Medical Bills
We do not believe injury victims should hold back from receiving medical treatment because they cannot afford it. There are various ways to work around not having the funds to pay medical providers.
You should notify hospitals, doctors, and other medical facilities if you cannot pay for the treatment you are receiving. Also, inform them if you do not have the insurance coverage to cover those bills. Many providers understand the severity of a case and are willing to wait for payment.
They may require you to sign a lien or subrogation form if they agree to wait. This form allows your attorney to withhold funds from your insurance settlement. Once the settlement has gone through, you can use those funds to pay for the medical bills accrued during treatment.
Remember auto insurance coverage and any Personal Injury Protection (PIP) you may have after an auto-related accident. Your PIP pays if you or someone else under your policy sustains injuries from an auto accident. This “no-fault” coverage activates and pays medical costs no matter who caused the accident.
Which Health Insurance Plans Require Reimbursement?
We must not forget to consider reimbursements. If you signed a lien, you must pay them out of the settlement before you receive the net amount. Additionally, attorneys must resolve claims against your settlement before you can receive the remaining funds.
Some health insurance plans will demand reimbursement as well. However, a statute in New Jersey prohibits straight medical insurance plans from imposing liens or asserting reimbursement rights. An attorney can help determine which health plans should receive reimbursement.
In other cases, the law requires you to repay them. ERISA-based self-funded health plans, Medicare, and Medicaid each require repayment for funds used for your health care. Refusal to pay these plans back may put you in legal trouble.
The self-funded plans tend to be easier to pay back. Medicare or Medicaid can be tricky, as communication with them tends to run slowly. You need an attorney from a dedicated law firm to continue communication attempts and settle your case as quickly as possible.
The Necessity of an Experienced Attorney
The fact you have to ask, “how are personal injury settlements paid out” indicates how complicated this process can be. Moreover, technical language often hinders the process of healing from an injury or the wrongful death of a loved one.
An experienced New Jersey personal injury attorney can explain liens before you sign them. Our goal is to help you receive as much money as possible at the end of your case. We can also determine who is truly due reimbursement after settlement based on claims, liens, and insurance.
Call Our Personal Injury Attorneys for Help
Our attorneys maintain a person-first policy that works in your best interest. We ensure you receive clear answers when asking, “how are personal injury settlements paid out?” helping you understand what to expect, like potential verdicts and settlement amounts.
Call Aiello, Harris, Abate, Law Group PC at (908) 561-5577 for a free consultation at our New Jersey law offices.