Negotiating Medical Bills After an Accident in Florida

A recent study by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) revealed that the typical price for an emergency room visit stands at $1,233, just for entry. For severe injuries, this expense might only scratch the surface of the total bill. From emergency room visits to ongoing treatments, the expenses can quickly add up, leaving victims

A recent study by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) revealed that the typical price for an emergency room visit stands at $1,233, just for entry. For severe injuries, this expense might only scratch the surface of the total bill.

From emergency room visits to ongoing treatments, the expenses can quickly add up, leaving victims of accidents grappling not only with physical, mental, and emotional trauma but also with the burden of overwhelming medical bills. In the aftermath of an accident, understanding your options and knowing how to negotiate your medical bills can make all the difference.

Who Pays for My Medical Bills After a Car Accident in Florida?

In Florida, the at-fault party’s insurance typically covers medical expenses resulting from a car accident. However, Florida is a no-fault state, meaning your own Personal Injury Protection (PIP) insurance may initially cover a portion of your medical bills regardless of who caused the accident.

Bodily Injury and Personal Injury Law in Florida: How Does It Work?

If your injuries exceed the limits of your PIP coverage or meet certain criteria, you may pursue a claim against the at-fault party’s bodily injury liability (BIL) insurance. Florida follows a modified comparative negligence system, which means your compensation may be reduced if you are found partially at fault for the accident or you may not get any if you are more than half at fault.. 2

In Florida’s updated modified comparative negligence system, individuals cannot receive compensation if a jury deems them more than 50% responsible for their injuries. Exceptions exist for claims involving medical negligence, but in most cases, those primarily at fault for an incident won’t receive compensation from a jury. However, statistically, most cases settle and the initial impression of who is more than 50% at fault may change as evidence is gathered

Will the Insurance Company Take Part of My Settlement?

Yes, it’s possible. Insurance companies may seek reimbursement for medical expenses they’ve paid on your behalf through a process called subrogation. This means they can claim a portion of your settlement to recoup their costs.

What Is Subrogation in a Personal Injury Claim?

Subrogation allows the insurance company to step into your shoes and assert their right to recover expenses paid for your medical care. It’s essential to understand your rights and obligations regarding subrogation with the help of a personal injury attorney to ensure you receive fair compensation.

Why You Need to Negotiate with the Health Insurance Company

While insurers can demand reimbursement for the medical bills they cover through subrogation, the amount of those medical bills may not always be accurate, fair, or reasonable. Following are some things you need to watch out for:

  1. Unnecessary Medical Care: Insurance companies sometimes include charges for unnecessary care in their reimbursement demands, aiming to recover more than they should. Reviewing your medical records closely can reveal procedures and treatments that didn’t aid your recovery.
  2. Non-Relevant Care: When invoking subrogation rights, insurers may demand reimbursement for all medical bills during your recovery, including unrelated routine or preventative care. While they lack subrogation rights to these expenses, they may still attempt to recover them.
  3. Incorrect Billing: Healthcare providers may inaccurately bill for procedures, such as upcoding (using the billing code of a similar but more expensive procedure), duplicate billing, or unbundling (charging procedures individually when these are typically performed together at a discount). These inflate the subrogation demand. Identifying these errors can safeguard your settlement award.
  4. Excessive Charges: Medical bills can sometimes be excessively high for the care received, particularly for uninsured individuals. In many cases, negotiation can reduce medical care costs to levels comparable to those for insured patients. Some states mandate healthcare providers to offer reasonable rates or negotiate payment plans, particularly for uninsured or low-income individuals.

Negotiating with the health insurance company can help reduce medical liens or the amount you have to pay back to the insurer. This allows you to keep more of your settlement and prevents you from being overwhelmed by debt and financial hardship in the long run.

What Medical Expenses Can I Recover?

You may be able to recover various medical expenses, including but not limited to:

  • Emergency room visits
  • Hospital stays
  • Surgeries and procedures
  • Doctor consultations
  • Prescription medications
  • Physical therapy
  • Rehabilitation services
  • Medical equipment and supplies

The Importance of Documenting All Medical Expenses

Documenting all medical expenses is crucial for accurately calculating your damages and ensuring you receive fair compensation. Keep detailed records of medical bills, receipts, prescriptions, and any other related expenses.

If you’re struggling with mounting medical bills from an accident caused by someone else’s negligence, you need professional help. At Dyson Law, we understand the overwhelming challenges you face and are here to support you every step of the way. We will fight tirelessly to protect your rights, negotiate on your behalf, and help you secure the compensation you deserve.

Your focus should be on healing and recovery, not worrying about financial burdens. Call Dyson Law today or fill out our online contact form to schedule a free consultation. Let us help you find peace of mind amidst the chaos.

Peter A. Dyson, Esq

MANAGING PARTNER OF DYSON LAW PLLC

Peter Dyson is the managing partner of Dyson Law PLLC. Peter runs the day-to-day operations of the firm as well as actively litigates on behalf of clients...READ MORE

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