When you purchase insurance, you expect that it will provide financial protection for you in case of the unknown. While that’s the whole point of insurance, accident victims quickly find that many insurance companies withhold payments until they complete a full investigation into the claim, approve it, and then ensure that every expense you’re claiming is related to the accident in question.
The process can be lengthy, and in the meantime, you need the best medical care available to ensure you make a complete recovery. So how do you pay your medical bills while you wait for the at-fault insurance company to resolve the claim? You have several options for ensuring you don’t have to take a hit to your personal finances to deal with injuries from a car accident that is not your fault.
1. Use Health Insurance Coverage
When you’re undergoing medical care, you should be able to use your medical insurance coverage just as you would if you were headed to your doctor for an illness. Some medical insurance companies might deny your claim if they discover that your injuries are due to an outstanding personal injury claim. However, most will just put the claim. Some insurance companies will require reimbursement if they are entitled under either Virginia or Federal laws.
The major setback to using health insurance coverage is that you’ll still have to cover deductibles and copays out of pocket to receive care. Depending on your financial situation and the extent of your medical care, this may or may not be reasonable for you.
2. Go Through Your Car Insurance Company
Alternatively, you could go through your car insurance company if your claim is related to a car accident, pedestrian accident, or bicycle accident. Just be sure that if you do file a claim on your insurance policy that you still open a claim with the at-fault party.
3. Evaluate Whether You Have Med Pay or PIP Coverage
Med pay or Personal Injury Protection coverage (PIP) are not required in Virginia. However, if you elected to have this coverage on your policy, now is a great time to use it.
This coverage provides payment for claims quickly even when you are not the at-fault party. However, if your personal injury claim is not related to a car accident, this coverage will not apply. Most Medpay and PIP coverages are usually no fault, meaning they pay out whether you were at fault or not.
4. Set Up a Payment Plan With the Medical Center
If you don’t have the money to pay for your medical coverage out of pocket, you might be able to set up a payment plan with the medical center. Many medical professionals know the strains that a personal injury can have on a person’s short-term finances while they wait for the claim to be approved.
It takes time to receive a settlement for the accident. As such, the medical provider might be able to help you work through a payment plan to spread out the expenses until you receive your settlement.
5. Document Your Expenses
No matter how you pay your medical bills, you must document those expenses for evidence in your personal injury case. Regardless of whether you choose to hire an attorney to guide you through the process, you’ll need to show the at-fault insurance company your exact expenses to calculate a fair settlement.
Learn More With a Free Consultation
Involving an attorney can be wise, as it ensures you receive fair compensation promptly so that you don’t have to face out-of-pocket expenses and the stress of worrying where that money will come from. For a free personal injury consultation, contact Geoff McDonald & Associates. We’ll work with you to determine the best course of action to pay your bills until your settlement is final.