What if I can’t pay my bills?

We understand this concern and are here to help you address it. An inability to go back to work after an accident is one of the primary problems our clients face. As we know, facing unemployment, either on a long-term or short-term basis, provides a great deal of motivation for many clients to contact us quickly after their accident. This question involves details specific to your own health and auto insurance policies. For example, a majority of automobile insurance policies provide Personal Injury Protection (PIP) for medical payment or MedPay benefits. Most people have this coverage and seek benefit of payments from their own automobile insurance policy to pay healthcare providers up to $5,000 (the actual amount of coverage may vary). MedPay commonly covers medical expenses for the insured, their passengers, other drivers on the policy, and members of the insured’s household. What many people do not realize is that MedPay insurance coverage provides payments to its own insured(s) even if the other driver is at fault.

Other sources of insurance payments might be available to pay for the medical bills as they accrue, which include: Private Health Insurance, Medicare, Medicaid, and supplemental health insurance policies. Unfortunately, many healthcare providers have adopted billing practices making it much harder for accident victims to get their bills paid as they accrue and avoid collection. The results of these practices leave accident victims uncertain that they will obtain necessary health insurance payments.

In the past, injured victims could easily submit health insurance claims on their health insurance policy as they accrued. This is no longer true as many Arkansas healthcare providers choose to forego submitting accident-related insurance claims to known health insurance providers (including Medicare and Medicaid) until they can determine whether they may recover more money from the insurer of the liable third party who caused the collision. Since this can take up to a year or longer to resolve, many innocent accident victims find that even though they have private health insurance, Medicare, or Medicaid, the medical bills are not getting paid and are often turned over for collection. Even though an accident victim may have health insurance coverage, the health care provider may not seek payment and instead turn over the accident victim to bill collectors. This is due to the fact that healthcare provider(s) likely never turned in the claim for payment for your health insurance at all. Healthcare providers have negotiated contractual obligations to accept lower payments for service charges paid by private health insurance, Medicare, and Medicaid. Therefore, if the healthcare provider quickly submits billing to a private health insurer, Medicare, or Medicaid (which exists solely to provide benefits for their insured after all), then the healthcare provider may lose the chance to get paid more from the insurer of the liable third party. Additionally, in most instances, the right to leverage and seek payment directly from the innocent accident victim grants stronger rights than if the private health insurer, Medicare, or Medicaid sought reimbursement from the liable third party’s insurance company. This leaves many accident victims in the middle and adds to the anxiety and stress caused by the collision as many find that, in addition to being forced out of work and needing to seek medical treatment, the harm is compounded by harassing collection notices, letters, or phone calls and lowered credit scores.

If you have specific questions about your bills getting paid, give us a call and we can assess your specific situation.