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How Are Medical Bills Paid After Car Accidents?

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Learn How Bills Get Paid From an Auto Accident Attorney

When you’re injured in a car accident, the liable party should be held responsible for any damages that occur as a result of the accident. An auto accident attorney’s work isn’t limited to getting you appropriate compensation for the property that was damaged in an accident; they can also help you claim compensation for any related medical bills. If you were recently involved in a car accident, these are some things you should know that may help you decide if you need a car accident injury lawyer.

Who pays your medical bills after an accident?

As a general rule, you are responsible for paying any medical bills related to a car accident, even if you were not at fault. Car insurance policies may offer “med pay coverage” or “bodily injury totaled gray vehicle after front end collisioncoverage”, which pays some of the medical bills of injured drivers, but the extent of this coverage is limited and some drivers are not required to have it. In Louisiana, coverage requirements of $15,000 for bodily injury or death of one person in an accident caused by the driver of the insured vehicle is required. If the guilty driver does not have med pay coverage or your medical expenses exceed their med pay policy limit, you will need to use your health insurance benefits to cover immediate medical expenses. If you don’t have health care coverage, you may have to pay your medical bills out of pocket. 

Although you are responsible for paying your medical bills to start, you can include your current and future medical bills as damages in a personal injury claim that’s related to the accident. The personal injury settlement you receive after your claim has been accepted can be used to pay off any ongoing medical expenses. This is why it’s important to have a car accident attorney by your side during the personal injury claims process, as they will help you build a strong case that can help you win a fair settlement from the guilty driver or their insurance company.

Is Louisiana a no-fault state for auto insurance?

All states handle the car accident insurance claims process based on their own laws and policies. Louisiana is a fault state, meaning the laws in this state deem the driver who was legally at fault responsible for any injuries or property damage. Therefore the innocent party holds the right to claim compensation from the at-fault driver. Compensation can be claimed by filing through either party’s insurance company or a personal injury lawsuit.

The process of submitting a car accident claim

Filing a car accident claim may seem difficult, especially if you were injured in the accident. But if you take the right steps in preparation for your claim, the process actually isn’t as hard as you may imagine. These are some key steps you should take after an accident to ensure that you can file an effective car accident claim.

five steps on what to do after an auto accident

Evidence can be used to prove who was at fault in a car accident and the severity of damages, aiding you in your efforts to win a personal injury lawsuit. The types of evidence you should collect depend on the nature of the accident, but at a minimum, you should take photographs of the accident scene. If possible, take pictures immediately after the accident and be sure to get photographs from as many angles as possible. The insurance companies and court officials will use these pictures to illustrate the accident scene as they try to determine the facts of the incident. 

In your photographs, make sure that you capture images of everything that may be relevant to the accident, such as skid marks and traffic control devices such as stop signs or traffic lights. You should also take pictures of the vehicles that were involved in the accident, as the damage left on the vehicles can provide useful insight to insurers and court officials. 

Beyond photographs, you should also gather information from witnesses who saw the accident. Neutral witnesses, like other drivers or pedestrians, may be a crucial contributor to your case. If possible, try to get the contact information of anyone who witnessed the accident itself or anything that happened prior to the accident.

After a car accident, the first thing you should do is call 911. Regardless of whether there are any injuries or damage immediately noted, you should have an officer document the accident in a police report. Once the police arrive, they will conduct a minor investigation to determine who was at fault in the accident. Their discoveries may be used to help you acquire a personal injury settlement.

Lafayette Police Department

900 E. University Ave
Lafayette, LA 70502

If you suffer any injury in a car accident, you should seek medical attention immediately after the accident. After you have been treated, request your medical records. Your records will be used by insurers and the court to determine how much you should be granted in a personal injury settlement. A car accident injury lawyer will need these records to help you form your case.

There are two types of car accident claims you can file; a first-party claim, which is filed through your insurance company; and a third-party claim, which is filed through the insurance of another driver. Regardless of the type of claim you’re filing, you or your auto accident attorney need to reach out to the insurance company as soon as possible to get the claims process moving forward. 

If you’re filing a third party insurance claim, you may be asked for the following information:

  • The insured driver’s full name
  • Their policy number
  • The start and end date of their insurance policy
  • The time and date of the incident
  • License and license plate numbers for all involved drivers
  • A basic description of the accident

Once you are in the physical condition to do so, you will need to draft a letter that explains why you are entitled to compensation from the at-fault party or their insurer. This letter will reference medical expenses, lost wages, and other expenses that were a result of the incident. A car accident injury lawyer can help you produce an effective letter. 

After you’ve completed all of the prior steps, you should be ready to begin negotiations with the insurance company. An auto accident attorney can approach the insurance company with any evidence you have collected and argue on your behalf to compel the company to offer you a fair settlement. If you do not have a car accident attorney, you’ll need to handle negotiations on your own. 

Once you’ve negotiated, the insurance company will normally offer you a cash settlement. If the settlement isn’t as high as you expected, you may wish to go to trial to claim a more reasonable payment. If you are uncomfortable with the amount the insurance offers you, don’t hesitate to contact a car accident attorney. They understand how to navigate the personal injury and property damage claim cases and can help get you a better deal.

Call an Auto Accident Attorney 

The Offices of Blaine Barrilleaux specializes in car accident cases and we can help you win fair compensation. Don’t accept an offer that won’t cover all of your needs. Contact our offices now to start filing your claim with a car accident injury lawyer.

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