Which Insurance Should Pay Medical Bills After You’ve Had a Car Wreck?
Posted on Wednesday, November 4th, 2015 at 10:24 am
Lawrence & Associates sees many clients after a car wreck, and we see many misconceptions about how insurance coverage should pay medical bills and repayments for lost wages. If you are unfortunate enough to suffer injuries in a motor vehicle accident, you’ll want to know what insurance to use and when to use it. Using insurance incorrectly – or wrongful denials by the insurance company – delay treatment and impede recovery. Make sure all the premiums you have paid count for something! Use your insurance wisely and get all the benefit you deserve.
Priority of Insurance Coverage
Insurance contracts and state law determine the order in which insurance policies have to pay. After a car accident, most insurance policies pay benefits in the following order:
- PIP or Med Pay coverage from your own car insurance policy
- PIP or Med Pay coverage from the car insurance policy of the owner of the car you were in when hurt
- Health Insurance coverage
- Liability policy of the at-fault driver
- Underinsured motorist coverage from your own car insurance policy
We’ve discussed PIP insurance several times in the past. PIP is car insurance that covers medical bills and a certain amount of lost wages. Med Pay coverage is similar, but covers only medical bills. Generally Kentucky drivers get PIP and Ohio drivers get Med Pay.
It is important to get a PIP or Med Pay claim number immediately after an accident by filling out an application for PIP benefits! These benefits are no fault, so they should not raise your premium. This claim number should be presented to each and every medical provider until the PIP or Med Pay benefits are exhausted. You’ll be glad you did this instead of using regular health insurance right off the bat, because regular health insurance is far harder to deal with when you are getting money from the liability policy of the at-fault driver.
The Other Driver’s Policy Does Not Pay First!
Every once in a while, we see Northern Kentucky car accident victims that are convinced that the at-fault driver’s automobile insurance policy should pay their medical bills or lost wages as they go through treatment. These people send bills to the liability carrier as the bills come in, expecting them to be paid. This is not how car insurance works, and if you do this the bills will go unpaid! Unpaid medical bills often go to collections and result in lawsuits against you. Don’t add to your problems by failing to get medical bills paid on time!
Although the at-fault driver’s liability insurance policy is ultimately responsible to pay these bills, this insurance company is allowed to wait until all the medical treatment is finished to determine the full amount it may have to pay. This is allowed because the at-fault driver’s policy pays more than just medical bills and lost wages; it also pays for pain and suffering and for loss of consortium, as well as the loss of your car’s value and other damages. The other driver’s liability insurance can – and will – wait until the end to resolve a claim.
Your insurance coverage, whether auto insurance or health insurance, is there to pay these medical bills or lost wages as they come in. Neither they nor you are getting cheated by using the coverage for its intended purpose. Further, your insurance companies are multi-billion dollar enterprises with teams of lawyers in their employ. They know how to get their money back from the liability policy, and they will take care of that on their own.
Make Your Insurance Work for YOU
The attorneys at Lawrence & Associates are well versed in insurance law, and we love helping people just like you get the full benefit of your insurance. If your Med Pay or PIP coverage is denying treatment, or if the at-fault driver’s liability policy is refusing to reasonably resolve your claim, we can help. Our attorneys have won millions in damages for our clients related to car accidents, and we’d be proud to work for you. Lawrence & Associates is Working Hard for the Working Class. Call us today!