When determining a settlement number, the injured party’s medical bills are one of the most contributing factors the attorney uses for this – and medical bills can become expensive. An accident involving a spinal injury can go up to even as much as $4 million. If an injured plaintiff has suffered a great deal and now has many medical bills, a great attorney will emphasize this to raise the chances of winning the case. A personal injury settlement typically does not include these medical bills.
Who Pays for Medical Bills After a Personal Injury Settlement?
Several different parties, aside from yourself, can pay for the medical bills after an injury. Aside from the obvious responsible party, government health insurance can also pay for it. These include government-funded programs such as Medicare, Medicaid, and Veterans Benefits.
A person’s private health insurance is another party that can have that debt paid. If the accident occurred on the job, then Worker’s Compensation may be able to pay off the victim’s medical bills.
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Do You Have to Pay Your Medical Bills from a Personal Injury Settlement?
The money you obtain from your settlement can be used towards something other than your medical debts, although it is highly recommended. Depending on your injury, you could face long-term physical rehabilitation or therapy services, adding to your already heavy medical debt. So, spending it on those is not required, but many attorneys will suggest you do so. Ultimately, it is completely up to you how you spend that money.
Your current situation and goals decide what it should be spent on. Aside from the medical debt, you might have student loans you will want to be done with once and for all. Consider your monthly car payments, insurance premiums, and rent or mortgage payments.
If you have children, you might have daycare and other expenses. Suppose you are unsure what else to do with the settlement money and have already paid off your medical debts. In that case, you can also create an emergency fund or invest in a home, education, or business.
What Types of Settlements Are There within a Personal Injury Case?
In the state of Georgia, personal injury payouts are usually divided into three classes: general damages, special damages, and punitive damages. With general damages payouts, also known as non-economic damages, the amount of money the victim obtains for the pain and suffering caused by an accident is involved. The money awarded here depends on a few factors, such as the severity of the injury, when the injury took place, whether it was short- or long-term, and whether an attorney was involved.
A special damages payout is an out-of-court settlement in which the injured party agrees to accept a specific amount of money. This is done in return for surrendering the right to seek monetary payouts at trial. Settlement letters are often created because of special damages payout, and you’ll see these with cases involving lawyer fees, lost wages, and medical expenses.
Punitive damages are typically awarded when it can be proven that the defendant committed misconduct, fraud, oppression, and other forms of clear damage to the plaintiff. These can be seen in cases involving drunk drivers, hit-and-runs, and road rage. The damages are awarded not for compensation but to punish the responsible party.
What About Deferral?
The injured party may find it difficult to cover their medical bills while dealing with the case. They might be out of work for some time, resulting in a loss of wages, and the bills only keep coming in. Attorneys can help defer the payments for medical bills in these cases until the case is complete.
They can send letters of protection to the medical providers, informing them that their payment is guaranteed once the settlement is resolved. In turn, the healthcare providers do not charge anything upfront for the treatment they provide to the victim.
Pre-Settlement Funding Can Help
There is another option when case deferral is not a choice. The injured party can apply for a pre-settlement lawsuit loan. No credit check is necessary, and they are not required to work or even be employed.
This loan can give them the necessary funds to pay off their debts while the settlement is still resolved. We can help you explore your options for these loans at Silver Dollar Financial. It only takes a few steps; you can click here to apply for one today.
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What Types of Medical Bills Are There?
Various medical bills can arise from a personal injury case, and many more can come up after the settlement has already been reached, depending on how severe the injury was. These include:
- Ambulance transportation and treatment costs
- Medical equipment uses, such as wheelchairs and prosthetics
- Surgery costs
- Mental health costs for therapy and psychologist consultations
- Prescription medications
- Physical rehabilitation
- Laboratory fees
- Long-term care invoices
- Costly hospital and emergency department bills
- Follow-up in-office doctor copays
How Do I Prove My Medical Costs?
At trial, no matter how obvious the injuries may be on the victim, the evidence of medical bills will need to be shown. Be sure to keep an organized file of every medical bill you have received as an outcome of the accident. You may need letters from the doctors you have seen, testifying that they have treated you and that the treatment was costly.
You need hard proof, such as invoices, time off work because of the injury, all receipts, and more.
What if My Settlement Is Less than My Medical Bills?
Although it does not happen often, the settlement can be less than the medical costs for certain victims. This can happen when the defendant you are suing is going out of business or filing for bankruptcy.
It may be against an individual who does not have insurance at all. In these cases, your attorney can negotiate to obtain a pro-rata agreement.
If the medical providers disagree with the pro-rata suggestion, you can appeal to the court for equitable distribution. This means that – if the judge rules in favor – the settlement would be divided up among the providers, so all get a respective share. The providers will at least get some amount, and you are off the hook.
Call Silver Dollar Financial for More Information
Do you have questions about lawsuit accident loans? Call Silver Dollar Financial, or submit our contact form to schedule an appointment today.