I got a call from a lady the other day who wanted to know how her medical bills were going to be paid after her injury.
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I’m Spencer Farris and I represent injury victims in the state of Missouri. I get that kind of call a lot from folks who are worried about their rising medical bills and the daily mail that they get with another bill collector looking for payment. This is what I typically tell them…
Senior citizens and folks on social security disability are covered by medicare, and medicare will pay the medical bills as they are incurred, however, medicare gets part of their money back from your injury case at the end. Your lawyer will have to negotiate that for you because medicare will want dollar for dollar on what they spent.
Children in Missouri who don’t have private health insurance, and some adults, are covered by Missouri Medicaid. And Medicaid will also pay medical bills, and at the end of you lawsuit they will expect to be repaid, however, a judge can reduce or totally eliminate your pay back to Medicaid. You will need your lawyer to help you with that.
The other group that frequently pays medical bills in Missouri is private insurance and private insurance will ask for repayment almost always, unless they are a special plan; a self funded union plan, or something along those lines that is governed by federal law- they are not entitled to reimbursement. The word that they will use is “subrogation” which means they stand in your shoes and get to collect their money back from the person who hurt you. Make sure that your lawyer is well aware and willing to fight for you so that you do not have to pay back the health insurance. This is not cheating; you paid benefits to get that health insurance; you wrote a check every month. They should not get their money back just because they did what they promised to do.
“I Don’t Have Insurance!”
Finally, there are a lot of folks who don’t have any health insurance, and in those situations hospitals and doctors will treat you on what is called a lien basis. Hospitals don’t have to see you unless you are in an emergency, but experienced trial lawyers can help you find a doctor who will treat you on a lien basis and will make sure that your doctor understands that they will get paid.
When you have been hurt the most important thing is to feel better and not to worry about how you are going to pay for your medical bills. Remember that a trial lawyer who cares about his clients will fight for you and will fight to put money in your pocket, rather than spend it all on the healthcare that you would not have needed but for your injury.
If you have questions about medical care or how to pay for it after an injury , call my office or reach us at the web site at the bottom of the screen. I am happy to visit with you without any cost or obligation, and hopefully put your mind at rest.
The SE Farris Law Firm is dedicated to the needs of injury victims and their families.