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If you or somebody you care about has been injured due to the careless or negligent actions of another party, it is crucial that you understand who will pay for your medical bills. The process of securing compensation after an injury can be complicated, particularly when you have to go up against aggressive insurance carriers or well-funded at-fault parties that do not want to pay a fair settlement. Here, we want to discuss how you get your initial emergency medical bills paid as well as who will ultimately be responsible for paying for your medical expenses.
If another individual, business, or entity causes your injury, they will generally not be responsible for paying for all of your medical expenses as they arise. An unfortunate reality of injury cases is that the victim must find a way to cover their medical bills until they are able to secure compensation through a settlement with insurance carriers or as a result of a personal injury lawsuit. Even if the other party is clearly at fault, the law still does not require them to pay the injury victim’s medical expenses right away.
California is a fault-based injury state, so until the other party can be proven guilty in the case, the injury victim will be responsible for covering their medical bills. Often, this means paying out-of-pocket.
When an injury victim pays out-of-pocket for their medical bills, this can mean a few things:
It is important to point out that if an insurer pays your medical bills in the meantime, whether this is a personal health insurer, Medicare, Medicaid, or another type of insurance, they will generally be entitled to reimbursement from any settlement or favorable verdict compensation against the defendant. In some cases, medical providers will place healthcare liens against any eventual settlement or jury verdict.
For any person in California who sustains an injury at work, they most likely will not have to pay any medical bills out-of-pocket. The workers’ compensation system in California is designed to be a “no-fault” system that covers injury victim’s medical bills regardless of who caused the injury. There are some cases where an employer or workers’ compensation insurance carrier could deny a claim, but these exceptions are very few.
If you or somebody you care about has been injured due to the actions of another person, business, or entity, you need to seek legal assistance as soon as possible. An Orange County personal injury attorney will be able to assess the entire situation and help evaluate all options when it comes to paying your medical bills while you await a personal injury settlement or a favorable jury verdict.