If you’ve been in a car accident and were seriously injured, you may be very concerned about paying your medical bills. You may not be able to work for weeks or even months. In some cases, your car accident doctor may even have told you that you will never be able to return to your job. As more and more bills come in, your savings are going to take a hit. Who is going to pay for your medical care after the accident but before any settlements or court case awards?
You Have an Obligation to Pay These Bills
Unfortunately, sustaining common injuries from an accident isn’t your only worry after a wreck, your medical bills, mortgage, rent, utilities, and any other bills that are in your name are your obligation. Doctors, utility companies, mortgage companies, and other creditors may sympathize with your condition, and some may extend your payment deadline, but at the end of the day, you’re obligated to pay these bills. If you don’t, your creditors can sue, begin foreclosing, evict you, or pursue other legal actions against you.
Health Insurance Will Help Lower Your Costs
Fortunately, if you have health insurance, it will cover some of the bills from the car accident. How much depends on your particular policy. You will likely have to pay a co-pay, and you may have a deductible or out of pocket maximum you must meet before your insurance covers some or even all of your expenses. Usually, the doctor, hospital, or other medical facility will bill your health insurance before they bill you, so the bills you receive are already lower than what they were originally. Unfortunately, because these policies are very complex, you may not know what they will pay for or fully understand how they determine how much is paid.
Auto Insurance Also Plays a Part
All drivers are required to have auto insurance. The good news is that as long as the driver responsible for the accident had insurance, they will pay you a settlement. The bad news comes in two parts. First, while it’s required, there are some drivers who are illegally driving without insurance. Second, even if they have insurance, these companies don’t always pay out very quickly. It may be several months or, if there’s any chance the other person wasn’t directly responsible, even years for your settlement to come in. They can even deny your claim, forcing you to go to court if you’re certain you’re entitled to compensation.
Because your payout can be substantially delayed, you may have to pay on your medical bills before your settlement comes in. This can put you under a large financial burden. However, the insurance company should reimburse you for any medical bill you can tie directly to the accident. Often, your doctor will bill your health insurance, and they will then bill the auto insurance company for reimbursement.
Many Hospitals Will Work with You
Hospitals often help patients get their debt under control by offering payment arrangements and financial hardship plans. These help to reduce the amount you have to pay until your settlement comes in or you can return to work.
You Can Sue for Damages
If the responsible party’s insurance won’t pay out or if you believe you are owed more compensation, you can sue. This is often a long process, and you will certainly have additional legal fees, but it can be worth it in the end. Be prepared for a long fight, though, as these cases often require multiple court dates and can take over a year.
Don’t Wait for Treatment
While you’re waiting for your settlement, you can’t wait for treatment. The team here at Pro-Care Medical Center will provide you with the care you need and work with your finances so you can focus on getting well. Contact us today to schedule an appointment.