Being involved in a car accident can be a traumatic and stressful experience. One of the added difficulties that come with it is dealing with medical bills. The costs of medical treatments, surgeries, and other related expenses can add up quickly and can be overwhelming. In this article, we will take a closer look at how to negotiate medical bills after a car accident in California and what you need to know to protect yourself.
Identify Possible Insurance Coverages
The first step in negotiating medical bills after a car accident is to understand your insurance coverage. Typically, you should consider three different potential insurance policies: 1) whoever caused your accident, 2) your own insurance coverage, and 3) workers compensation insurance if the accident occurred while working.
California law requires all drivers to have liability insurance, which covers the cost of medical expenses for people injured in an accident. California law does not require underinsured motorist coverage or uninsured motorist coverage. However, if you pay for this type of coverage then you might be entitled to some benefits. Moreover, if the accident occurred while working, then your employer’s insurance may be obligated to cover the medical bills. It’s important to review your policy and understand what it covers, including the limits of your coverage.
If you have health insurance, it’s important to check if it covers medical expenses related to a car accident. Some policies may have exclusions or limits on coverage, so it’s important to understand these before you seek medical treatment.
Keep Organized Notes of Your Medical Services
Once you understand your coverage, it’s important to keep detailed records of all medical expenses related to the accident. This includes bills, receipts, and any correspondence with insurance companies or healthcare providers. Having a clear and organized record of your expenses can be helpful when it comes to negotiating the bills.
Negotiate With Healthcare Provider
The next step is to communicate with your insurance company and healthcare providers. Your insurance company may be able to negotiate the bills directly with the providers, and they may be able to reduce the cost. You can also communicate with your healthcare providers directly and ask if they offer any discounts or payment plans.
It’s also worth noting that California law, specifically the California Insurance Code, Section 11580.2, allows insurance companies to seek reimbursement for medical expenses from the at-fault party’s insurance company. This means that even if you don’t have enough coverage, the other party’s insurance company may be responsible for paying the medical bills.
Lawyers Can Negotiate Medical Bills After An Injury
If you’re unable to negotiate the bills with your insurance company or healthcare providers, it may be worth seeking the help of a personal injury attorney. They can help you navigate the complex legal process and make sure your rights are protected. They can also help you negotiate a fair settlement with the insurance company or healthcare providers.
Dealing with medical bills after a car accident can be overwhelming. It’s important to understand your insurance coverage, keep detailed records of your expenses, and communicate with your insurance company and healthcare providers to negotiate the bills. California law allows insurance companies to seek reimbursement for medical expenses from the at-fault party’s insurance company, and if you’re unable to negotiate the bills, it may be worth seeking the help of a personal injury attorney. They can help you navigate the legal process and negotiate medical bills after an accident.