Who Pays For Medical Expenses After A Car Accident?
If you’ve recently suffered injuries in a car accident, the medical bills will likely pile up.
Care for car accident injuries in Georgia can be extremely expensive.
So, if you weren’t the at-fault driver, how do you ensure your medical bills get paid properly?
The first thing you should do is seek the advice of an experienced car accident lawyer.
Your car accident attorney can help clarify your rights and responsibilities following a severe car accident that injured you.
In the article below, we will discuss how you can expect your medical bills to be paid after a motor vehicle accident.
Who Pays The Medical Bills If You Get In A Car Accident?
Georgia is known as an “at-fault” state.
That means the at-fault party that caused an accident victim’s injuries must compensate the victim for the losses.
The person who caused the crash is the person who ultimately pays medical bills in a car accident in Georgia.
But you have to prove that the at-fault driver’s negligence caused the collision and resulting accident injuries.
A person is negligent when they must act carefully but fail to do so.
A negligent party will compensate the victim for all losses and damages following the negligent act, including medical bills.
Medical expenses from a car accident in Georgia could include:
- Surgical expenses
- Future medical need
- Diagnostic tests
- Chiropractic care
- Emergency room expenses
- Doctor bills
- Medical supplies
- In-patient hospital costs
- Rehabilitation and follow-up care expenses
- Ambulance transportation fees
- Physical therapy
A car accident victim in Georgia should contact a reputable car accident lawyer immediately after their accident.
Your lawyer will explain how to collect payment for medical bills and claim damages over and above medical expenses like lost wages, property damage, and pain and suffering.
The Defendant Doesn’t Have to Pay Your Medical Bills On an Ongoing Basis
If you get into an accident, you’re responsible for making sure your medical bills are paid as you incur them.
You have to take care of your medical bills until any underlying insurance claim or personal injury lawsuit is resolved with the at-fault driver.
The only exceptions are usually:
- Your car accident occurs in a no-fault state
- Your accident triggers medical payments (or “med pay”) insurance, or similar coverage
- workers’ compensation claims.
If an injury claim is made under these coverages, you can usually submit your medical bills as they come in from your medical providers.
Rolling claims can be paid out until the coverage limit is reached.
With those exceptions aside, the law doesn’t usually require the at-fault driver or their health insurer to pay your medical costs on an ongoing basis.
If the other person is found at fault in court, they’ll be ordered to pay your damages.
Most injury cases settle well before trial or before a lawsuit is filed.
But until there’s a resolution, you’ll need to ensure your medical bills are paid.
Personal Injury Protection Insurance
Drivers in Georgia are not required to buy PIP coverage.
However, personal injury protection coverage is still good for Georgia drivers to have with their auto insurance company.
Personal injury protection (PIP) insurance on your auto insurance policy provides coverage for a fixed amount of medical expenses and lost wages following an auto accident.
Most drivers carry a minimum of $10,000 of protection.
Lower-cost policies typically have higher deductibles than others.
With minor injuries, your personal injury protection insurance might provide all the coverage you need to take care of your medical expenses after a car accident.
But medical bills pile up fast, so it’s easy to exceed the $10,000 minimum PIP coverage even when treating minor injuries.
PIP protection is the primary insurance that pays for medical care after a car accident.
If your care exceeds the policy limit of your PIP benefits, your healthcare insurance will often pay for the rest of your medical treatment.
The hospital may charge your health insurance company first, and your health insurance company will seek reimbursement from your PIP insurance company.
If you have a health saving account, you can use those funds to pay for your medical services.
Health savings accounts allow the injured person to use money set aside to pay for medical care.
Employers may also contribute to an employee’s health savings account, increasing the funds available when large medical payments arise.
Medical Liens And Hospital Liens
Sometimes health care providers will cover an accident victim’s medical bills in exchange for a lien on the eventual personal injury verdict or settlement.
If an accident victim does not appear to have enough insurance coverage to pay for their care, hospitals will request they sign a lien letter.
This permits medical providers to recover what’s owed from the victim’s personal injury case.
Accident victims who agree to a lien will not have to pay their medical bills upfront.
Choosing A Georgia Car Accident Attorney
No one needs to suffer after a car accident.
And sometimes, medical bills can seem just as painful as your injuries.
A good lawyer has the legal experience needed to receive maximum compensation for your financial recovery from a negligent party.
If you’ve recently been in a car accident and believe the other person is at fault, The Mabra Firm can help you on the road to recovery.
Do not hesitate to contact us for a free consultation.
We will answer any questions and help you get started on the path to fair compensation.
Call us today at 404-344-5255 or fill out the form below.
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