When you’ve been involved in an accident, you just want to go home and concentrate on your recovery without thinking of the hospital and bills. Unfortunately, you cannot run away from adult life calls.

If you were involved in an accident in Florida and got injured, you probably have medical bills. Paying off medical bills is a big issue for most people, especially if you cannot afford it. It can be stressful, but working closely with a West Palm Beach personal injury attorney can help you discover the many options available to make sure you receive medical care without worrying about its cost.

Does Your Accident Fall Under a No-Fault System?

The first step to take if you are wondering how you are going to pay for medical care and treatment is to determine if the accident falls under the Florida no-fault system. If it does, like in a car accident, your insurance will cover your less severe injuries.

In a no-fault state like Florida, each injured driver will typically use their insurance to recover regardless of who was at fault. However, if your injuries are severe, you can file a lawsuit against the at-fault driver.

PIP Coverage

Personal Injury Protection (PIP) is no-fault car insurance in Florida, among other a dozen states. It is a requirement for all Florida drivers and will cover up to $10,000 of your medical bills if you’re injured and have an emergency medical condition. Unfortunately, Florida PIP laws require your insurance to pay only 80% of your reasonable medical bills. This means you’ll still be responsible for paying the remaining 20% using other means.

Pip is Primary

Florida law 627.736 recognizes PIP insurance as the primary payer following a car accident. Even with personal health insurance, your PIP insurance will pay first. However, remember that PIP will only pay your medical bills if you receive medical care within 14 days following your car accident.

What Does PIP Insurance Cover?

Florida laws are strict on what should be covered under this type of insurance. Medical, rehabilitative services, x-ray, dental, ambulance, hospital, nursing services, and follow up care are all covered. But you need to have a doctor’s order and the treatment facility be medically licensed for you to receive PIP benefits.

Any acupuncture or massage therapy are not covered. Moreover, you won’t receive any benefits if you were committing a felony or harming yourself when the accident occurred.

How to Get Payment

You need to submit copies of the billing statements to the insurer. They should pay the bills once they receive the statements. They will become overdue after 30 days of nonpayment.

What if the Insurance Company Won’t Pay?

As long as your accident falls under Florida’s no-fault laws, you will receive PIP benefits. However, you may find yourself in a situation where the insurance company won’t pay. If this is your case, you need to file a claim that will enforce your PIP benefits.

Medpay

Medical payment insurance coverage or “MedPay” is another option that can help you cover your medical bills if you are unable to pay. Some property and automobile insurance policies have this coverage to cover any medical costs incurred for injuries caused by the insured.

Your MedPay can cover the remaining 20% that was not covered by your PIP insurance.

What if I Don’t Have MedPay and Need to Pay the Remaining?

You may still have additional bills even after your PIP, and MedPay benefits have been awarded. If this is your case, or perhaps you don’t have MedPay coverage to cover the remaining 20%, you should turn to your health insurance provider.

Your health insurance will pay for whatever is left according to your policy terms. If they give you any money, they may recover it from the at-fault party.

Medicaid

This is another option designed by the federal government for low-income people. If you are injured in an accident and don’t have insurance, visit Florida’s Medicaid office (under the Department of Children and Families) to determine if you qualify for these benefits.

Do Hospitals Have a Lien on a Personal Injury Settlement?

You can also work out a payment plan with a health care provider. Some hospitals in Florida will agree to care for you if you promise to pay. In this case, you will be offered a personal injury lien to sign.

Several hospitals in counties within Florida are allowed to have a lien on your personal injury settlement against the liable party. Your negotiations with the hospital will depend on this.

What if My Accident Was Outside the No-Fault System?

If your medical bills have gone through the roof because of severe injuries, your final option could be suing the at-fault party. Your Florida accident attorney may approach the other party or their insurer to get a fair settlement. You may need to pay the bills from your pocket as this process may take time. If that doesn’t bear fruit, your lawyer may pursue the case through the legal system.

Did You Get Injured at Your Workplace?

If you are injured while performing work-related duties, your employer’s workers’ compensation coverage should pay for your medical bills. These could also include any transport costs to and from your doctor’s appointments.

Premises liability accidents are treated differently in Florida. If you’re involved in a slip, trip, and fall accident, you’re generally required to pay for your medical expenses. But if you cannot afford it, you can decide to sue the property owner. However, this will depend on whether this property owner has a property insurance policy and can pay out any damages.

There’s always an option of filing for bankruptcy if all options have failed – although this might bear future financial implications. You can file for a Chapter 13 bankruptcy where a portion of the debt is paid in a structured repayment plan, and the remainder is discharged (forgiven).

Legal Counsel in Your Difficult Moment

Payment of medical bills can be complicated and stressful, especially if you cannot afford it. During such a time, you need someone who will help you receive the benefits you deserve.

A Florida personal injury can help you discover ways to pay off your medical bills so that you can focus on recovery. Talk to a lawyer who has worked and helped clients with similar situations—Call 561-557-4546 for a free case evaluation.