Getting the medical care you need is your most important concern after a car accident. You want to get better and return to your normal activities. For wage earners, the car accident comes with the additional concern that you need to get back to work to support your family. The pain of an injury combined with the stress of finding medical care and paying your bills can be overwhelming.
Unfortunately, for many, getting this medical care is a challenge. The party at fault for your car accident is responsible for paying your medical bills. However, the person must have adequate insurance or personal assets to pay bills. Further, the at fault driver and their insurance company will rarely pay your medical bills quickly. Rather, the legal process can take months to resolve. In the meantime, you will need to find a way to get the medical care. The resources below may help.
If you have personal health insurance, your insurance company should pay your medical bills. If your health insurance through your employment, you may lose your insurance if you are unable to work because of your injuries. You are uninsured, you can look for health insurance through the health insurance marketplace, also known as Obama care. Insurers are no longer allowed to deny coverage because of pre-existing conditions, and many people will qualify for subsidies. However, even with subsidies, the cost of private health insurance can be prohibitive, particularly when you are unable to work.
Your Car Insurance
Many car insurance policies have medical payments coverage. Medical payments coverage generally pays for medical cost after you are hurt in a car accident, regardless of who was found at fault for the accident. If you have this coverage, your insurance company will generally promptly pay medical expenses. However, coverage is generally limited to about $5000. In addition, your car insurance company has a right to reimbursement from any money you get from the negligent driver or his insurance company.
If your car accident occurred while you were on the job, workers compensation should pay your medical bills. If you are an employee who travels for your work, and your accident occurs during your normal working hours, your injury may be covered by workers compensation. You should contact an experienced workers compensation attorney to evaluate your claim.
If you are Medicare eligible, Medicare will pay your medical bills after a car accident. If you are over age 65, are eligible for Medicare. If you are under age 65, you may be eligible for Medicare if you are on Social Security Disability (SSD).
Unfortunately, there is a long waiting period for Medicare benefits related to SSD. Medicare benefits start two years after your first entitled to SSD. You cannot wait two years for medical treatment for your car accident injuries. However, Medicare can be a good source of long-term care for your car accident injuries.
Be aware that Medicare has a right to reimbursement from any money you get from the negligent driver or his insurance company.
Generally, to receive Medicaid, you must (1) all to one of the categories covered persons and (2) have limited financial means (i.e., income and assets). In most states, Medicaid covers pregnant women, infants, children and young adults under 19 years of age, and individuals who are disabled. The person is considered "disabled" when he or she is not capable of doing substantial, gainful employment and his or her condition has existed or is expected to exist for a 12 month period.
The income limitations for Medicaid or around $700 per month for an individual and $1100 per month for a couple. To be Medicaid eligible as an adult you must also have assets of no more than about $2000 for an individual and $3000 for a couple.
Be aware that Medicaid also has a right to reimbursement from any money you get from the negligent driver or his insurance company.
We explore all options with our clients for their medical care. We offer a free consultation so that you may discuss your concerns with an experienced attorney. Contact us online or call our St. Louis office at 314-862-6865 to schedule your free initial consultation. When you meet with us, ask about:
- Evening and weekend appointments
- Home and hospital visits
- No attorneys fees unless you collect