If you are injured in a car accident, one of your biggest concerns may be how to pay for your medical bills. Medical costs can add up quickly after an accident, especially if you were seriously injured. There is often confusion about this issue, so it’s important to understand how it works.
If you have been involved in an accident in Kansas City and are wondering how to pay for the medical expenses you need, contact a Kansas City attorney who can explain the process and help you file a claim with your insurance company. Contact a Kansas City car accident attorney at (816) 578-0580 and they can help guide you.
Who Pays for Medical Expenses After a Car Accident?
Most people believe that the driver who was at fault in the accident and their insurance should be responsible for paying the medical bills of those injured. While this is technically correct, the “other driver” must be proven at fault before any kind of settlement can be reached. Once they are found to be at fault, their insurance company is responsible for paying you for the damages you suffered, which includes your medical expenses. However, proving a fault is a time-consuming process that can take months or even over a year to prove. You won’t get reimbursed by the other driver’s insurance until proven wrong and a settlement is reached. So, until some sort of settlement is reached, you, the injured party, and the person seeking medical care are ultimately responsible for your medical expenses during this time.
Medical professionals often see people injured in car accidents. When you visit a doctor’s office, you are responsible for paying the medical expenses incurred. However, if you are having trouble paying your bills, it is recommended that you tell your doctor about your situation. Most medical professionals understand that your injury may prevent you from working. These professionals may also know that insurance companies typically take 30 to 90 days to pay a claim. Because of this, most doctors and hospitals are willing to work with you on a payment plan.
If you have past due medical bills, you should call your doctor and/or medical facility and let them know that you are working with an attorney on a settlement or possible lawsuit. Most stop collecting payments until the settlement goes through or the court makes a decision on your case. You can also ask the doctor to waive reporting any late payments on your credit report until you receive a settlement or court-awarded damages.
Options for paying for medical expenses
Having to pay medical bills out of pocket while waiting for an insurance company to pay out a claim can be financially difficult for many. Medical bills are the leading reason people declare bankruptcy. For this reason, it is important to explore your cost of care options until your claim is resolved:
- Health insurance. After a car accident, you can use your health insurance to pay for your medical expenses. Your health insurance may pay for some or all of the medical expenses related to the accident. However, you will need to pay any deductibles and copays listed on the policy. Document all deductibles and co-pays you have to pay so that they can be reimbursed when discussing the total loss you suffered.
- Medical payment insurance (MedPay). MedPay is an optional coverage in Missouri that you can add to your existing policy. Coverage limits, ranging from $1,000 to $10,000, are the amount your insurance company will pay for eligible medical expenses after an accident. If you have this coverage, you can use your Medical Payments Insurance (MedPay) policy to pay for your bills. MedPay is a no-fault policy, so it pays for medical expenses after an accident no matter who is at fault. Give your doctor’s office information about your MedPay plan, and they can bill for your care with that coverage.
- Personal Injury Protection (PIP). PIP insurance is another type of insurance you may have heard of. This is additional coverage that can be purchased in some states and may cover many of your medical and other accident-related expenses. However, in Missouri, this specific coverage is not available. Insurance companies in Missouri do not offer PIP coverage, but rather MedPay coverage as discussed earlier.
Another option for paying medical bills is to file an injury claim with the at-fault driver’s insurance company. As mentioned earlier, the process of reaching a settlement can take months or even over a year, so you may need to rely on one of the above methods to cover your costs. If you do not have the financial means to pay for your medical bills, or if the at-fault driver is underinsured, you will want to consider seeking legal help who can advise you on all your legal options. An experienced car accident attorney will be able to help you obtain the compensation you need to cover your medical bills, lost wages, and other damages.
Kansas City Car Accident Lawyers
If you’ve been injured in a car accident, you know that the process of paying for medical bills can be confusing and frustrating. At Peterson & Associates, PC, our attorneys understand the ins and outs of fighting insurance companies, and we’re committed to helping our clients get justice.
The attorneys at Peterson & Associates PC can help you file your claim and get the compensation you deserve. Contact our Kansas City personal injury attorneys today to learn more about your legal options. Contact Peterson and Associates PC at (816) 578-0580 for a free consultation with a Kansas City car accident attorney.Our team of lawyers is always on call