Dealing with Medical Bills After an Auto Accident – How an Attorney Can Help You
Car accidents present an array of challenges, and if you have suffered injuries as a result of a car accident before, you know all too well how stressful the process can be. Along with personal injuries comes the inevitable need to pay for all necessary medical expenses. It isn’t always easy for an injured individual to cover all medical costs that may be associated with a car accident. For example, if your injuries require long-term care, you could be stuck in a situation where medical bills begin to pile up, and there may not seem to be any end in sight.
While car insurance may cover certain medical expenses, payment may not be issued until long after you incur hundreds, thousands or even tens of thousands in medical bills. It takes time to investigate an accident to determine what parties may be responsible which in turn helps to determine how much compensation a particular individual is entitled to. Compensation is intended to cover medical costs associated with the injuries.
Common Types of Medical Expenses Associated with Car Accident Injuries
The injuries as result of a car accident can range from minor to severe and permanent, and in some cases, individuals may lose their lives as a result of a car accident. The different types of medical expenses injured individuals may incur include, but are not limited to, the following:
- Ambulance and emergency room expenses which can be significant given the nature and severity of the injuries needing treatment;
- X-rays, CT Scans, MRIs, and other diagnostic imaging;
- Laboratory testing;
- Prescription and/or over-the-counter (OTC) medication;
- Follow-up visits with medical providers;
- Costs associated with seeing a specialist, such as an orthopedic surgeon, to address injuries that only a specialist can treat;
- Surgical procedures to treat injuries (emergency procedures can be especially costly);
- Hospital stays; and
- Physical therapy.
An added cost to personal injuries resulting from a car accident is lost income and the inability to work in the future, whether temporary or permanent. Not being able to work can make an injured individual’s life even more stressful as finding the money to pay for necessary medical expenses can seem nearly impossible.
So, What Are My Options?
The amount of stress, pain, and confusion can be difficult to deal with following a car accident. As such, you should be aware of what options are available to you. Regardless of how costly medical bills can be, the most important thing is to ensure you are receiving medical treatment for your injuries. Once you have received medical treatment, you may consider the following options to get on top of your medical expenses and have a good understanding of what steps you need to take after an auto accident.
- Contact your health insurance provider to learn about what treatment may be covered;
- Speak with your medical providers to determine if payment plans are available (many medical providers will do this – especially larger hospitals); and
- Speak with an experienced attorney about the general process of settling a car accident claim and how your car insurance policy will come into play.
It is important to keep in mind that if your health insurance provider does cover the cost of medical treatment, that insurance provider may seek reimbursement at a later date when you have received compensation as part of a car insurance claim or a potential lawsuit.
Additionally, working directly with your car insurance agent can be a confusing process, and you may need the advice of an attorney before moving forward. Therefore, it is important that you consider speaking with an attorney to have all of your questions answered as quickly as possible following a car accident.
This guest blog post is submitted by Long Island Car Accident Attorney Richard S. Jaffe of the Law Offices of Cohen & Jaffe, LLP. His profile can be viewed here. You can contact him by calling 516-358-6900.