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medical bills in personal injury settlement

Medical Bills In Personal Injury Settlements

If there are medical bills in your personal injury settlement, they will need to be addressed as part of the settlement. Your personal injury lawyer will assist with this. Generally, there are two types of medical bills in personal injury settlements. First, there are those bills which are liens. Second, there are those bills which are not liens. The two are treated differently for purposes of whether they must be paid out of your personal injury settlement.

Liens In Personal Injury Settlements

Certain medical providers will claim a lien against your personal injury settlement. The claimant does so by citing the language in NCGS 44-49 and NCGS 44-50. This statute allows the medical provider to claim a lien against your settlement or jury verdict. However, there are limits—the statute limits all lien holders to one half of the settlement after attorney fees and expenses have been deducted.

Your personal injury lawyer should discover the liens against your personal injury settlement when requesting medical records and medical bills related to your claim. Keep in mind, if you were treated at a facility and did not tell your personal injury lawyer about it, it would be difficult for them to discover the lien.

The personal injury attorney will keep track of all liens claimed against settlement. Upon disbursing the settlement proceeds, the liens will be paid. Remember, the lien holders are limited to roughly one third of your settlement. The amount they receive will differ depending upon how much your personal injury settlement is worth. Your attorney will calculate the appropriate payments for each lien holder. While the lien holders may still pursue you for the balance of the lien, our firm typically requests the lien holder accept the pro rata share as full and final payment of the lien.

Bills Which Are Not Liens

There will be other medical providers who will have an outstanding bill related to the injury. However, they may choose not to claim a lien. Or, they may simply fail to claim a lien against your settlement. This gives you the option of having your attorney pay them from settlement, or paying them yourself, outside of settlement.

Medicare, Medicaid, ERISA Liens

Healthcare providers like Medicare, Medicaid and ERISA health plans, are entitled to be reimbursed if they pay for treatment related to your personal injury claim. Medicare applies what they call a “Procurement Formula” to the settlement amount. Your attorney can estimate what this amount will be prior to reaching settlement. Medicaid is generally limited to roughly one third of the settlement. ERISA health plans, unfortunately, are entitled to be reimbursed for their entire lien out of your settlement proceeds. Your personal injury lawyer can usually successfully negotiate the lien prior to reaching a settlement.

Personal Injury Lawyers And Medical Liens

Your personal injury lawyer will make a dramatic difference for you as it relates to any liens against your settlement proceeds. The law firm will negotiate the liens, and present your case to the medical providers in such a way that entices them to take a reduced rate. Most of this negotiating is done before you reach an actual settlement. That is when your leverage is highest against medical providers and lien holders.

Speak With A Charlotte Personal Injury Attorney Today

If you have a personal injury claim and you would like to speak with a lawyer, call us. You can reach us at 704.749.7747 or request a FREE CASE EVALUATION and we will call you today to discuss your case.

 

When someone is involved in a pedestrian personal injury involving an automobile, the results are often heartbreaking. The Layton Law Firm began its reputation for representing pedestrians by successfully represented a 17-year-old boy who was seriously injured by a driver, while crossing a busy Charlotte street at night. After fighting a denied claim and ultimately prevailing against the insurance company for the child and his family, we made it a priority to fight hard for injured pedestrians.

We currently represent numerous pedestrians in personal injury and wrongful death actions. We take each law firm client’s injuries seriously, but injuries to children and pedestrians are specifically important to us because of the extreme nature of the injuries and the age of the individuals involved. As a result, children and pedestrian injuries have become a passion of ours. Unfortunately, winning a pedestrian claim can be an uphill battle requiring persistence, creativity, and diligent pursuit of recovery.

Don’t Pedestrians Always Have The Right Of Way?

This is the question always asked when there is a pedestrian injury. As a Charlotte pedestrian personal injury lawyer, unfortunately I find myself quite often answering “Not always”. While pedestrians often start with a presumption of right of way, they can easily forfeit it by being too far outside a crosswalk, crossing the road at a non-designated spot, or being inebriated. In fact, there are some instances where a pedestrian actually must yield to the motorist.

How Do I Preserve The Pedestrian Right Of Way?

There are a few guidelines which will help preserve your right of way as a pedestrian. Always strive to:

  • Walk with the cross-walk signals
  • Stay inside specifically marked cross-walk pathways
  • If a sidewalk exists, use the sidewalk (and not the roadway)
  • Electric wheelchair users: follow the rules for pedestrians, NOT for vehicles

Do Drivers Have Responsibilities To Pedestrians In NC?

Yes, there are. Even in a situation where a pedestrian may have yielded the right of way, the operator of a motor vehicle must still exercise reasonable care to avoid colliding with a pedestrian in the roadway. The doctrine of Last Clear Chance can also be applied, and your Charlotte Pedestrian Personal Injury Lawyer will discuss it with you. Essentially, it says that even if a pedestrian has forfeited the right of way, if the operator of the vehicle has the last clear chance to avoid an accident, he or she must avoid the accident. This doctrine applies in other personal injury situation as well, such as automobile accidents between the operators of two vehicles.

How Can A Personal Injury Lawyer Help?

A Charlotte personal injury lawyer will help to make sure you are treated fairly. Insurance companies often deny pedestrian claims based on contributory negligence, or some other factor. An aggressive legal strategy can often overcome this denial and help achieve a fair result. It is our opinion that pedestrians make good plaintiffs.

When an insurance denial is met with a threat of a lawsuit, quite often we are able to reach settlement before entering the courtroom. In most cases, an insurance company does not want to appear in court against a pedestrian, because it shows an unwillingness to settle the case or to be reasonable in accepting liability for the plaintiff’s injuries.

Pedestrian injuries also often lead to large medical bills. Your personal injury lawyer will not only work to secure a fair offer for you, but can also negotiate some of your medical billing. The end result is you end up with more money in your pocket. The ability to negotiate these bills stems from the attorney’s understanding of N.C.G.S. 44-49 and 44-50, which is a limiting factor when it comes to liens resulting from medical treatment related to the injury.

You deserve to have someone fight for your rights. Insurance companies are focused on the bottom line. We focus on the client.

Speak With A Charlotte Pedestrian Lawyer Today

If you were a pedestrian, and you were hit by the driver of an automobile or motorcycle, please call us at 704.749.7747. Or, if you’d like us to call you, just click HERE to request a call online. An attorney will be happy to discuss your rights and provide you guidance, at no charge. There’s no obligation to hire us but we hope you’ll choose to Recover With Us.

If you need a free copy of your accident report, we’re happy to obtain that for you as well– just click HERE to request one and simply let us know the date of your accident, the location, and your full name.

We have settled several personal injury claims involving fractured or broken legs. Some of these claims involved slip and fall injuries, and others involve car accidents. Depending upon the facts surrounding an injury, you can achieve dramatically different results. This is why working with a Charlotte personal injury lawyer is an important part of your case.

How Do You Break Your Leg In A Car Accident

It may seem odd to break your leg or ankle in a car accident. First, you generally place your foot on the brake at the time of impact. This is simply instinct. Second, your leg tends to be in a locked position when engaged with the brake. Finally, due to the impact of the car accident, many victims find all their weights comes to bear on the leg engaged with the brake pedal. The force pushing through the leg causes the break or fracture.

What Types Of Breaks Occur In A Car Accident

You may fracture or break your tibia or fibula in a car accident. These are the bones in the lower leg. You might also suffer a torn meniscus or ACL injury, though these are more common in slip and fall injuries. A broken thigh bone or femur is another common injury due to impact from car accidents.

The Value Of Your Broken Bone Claim

As mentioned before, depending upon the facts surrounding your injury, the value of your claim may differ. If the insurance company defending the other driver believes the accident was partly your fault, they may argue for less than 100% value to be paid to you as part of a personal injury settlement. This happens more commonly when the impact is not due to rear-end impact. Additionally, if you suffer a broken bone in a slip and fall injury, you will find the first line of defense from the adjuster will be Contributory Negligence. Essentially, they will argue you weren’t watching where you were going, or were wearing the wrong type of shoes. Their offer to settle will be reduced, based on these facts.

If your injury gives rise to lost wages or special damages, the value of your claim will also be affected. Your personal injury lawyer can help you verify lost wages and defend your right to be compensated for lost wages. If you are self-employed, you’ll find unique challenges when presenting lost wages to insurance adjusters.

The Importance Of Working With A Lawyer

Not every personal injury claim requires the help of a personal injury lawyer. There are times when using a personal injury lawyer might out-weigh the benefits. In our experience, we are happy to give you advice on how to settle those claims on your own. However, the vast majority of clients find they get better results with the help of a personal injury lawyer. There’s no cost to hire our firm, and we don’t get paid unless you get paid.

Talk To A Charlotte Personal Injury Lawyer Today

Call 704.749.7747 today to speak with a Charlotte personal injury lawyer. Or, click HERE to request a call from us. Phone consultations are free. We know you have choices, and we hope you choose to Recover With Us.

Our firm represents new car accident clients and slip and fall clients each day in Charlotte, NC. Injuries from those accidents range from soft tissue injuries to broken bones, and each personal injury claim is unique. Your injuries directly affect the value of your claim. Understandably, clients want to know what broken bones from car accidents are worth when it comes time to settle a claim. The answer depends on a few factors.

Medical Treatment

Perhaps the most telling indicator of the value of your personal injury claim is the medical treatment you received. Your Charlotte personal injury lawyer will analyze this from two perspectives: the actual medical records, and the medical billing. Some broken bones from car accidents require a cast and time to heal, while others require numerous screws, pins and rods in order to support the broken bone while it heals. The differing nature of treatment will change the value of your claim.

Time Missed From Work

Broken bones from car accidents routinely lead to missed work. If the car accident gave rise to missed work or lost wages, your lawyer will ask you to have your employer sign a Lost Wages Affidavit in support of establishing the wages you lost as a direct result of the car accident. Depending upon your job, a broken bone may mean a few days out of work, or several weeks. Your lost wages will be added to your medical billing totals and will contribute to the total value of your claim.

Special Damages

Personal injury lawyers and insurance adjusters often talk about Special Damages. These can include but are not limited to, harm you suffered as a direct result of your car accident. They extend beyond the physical injuries. For instance, if you were in a car accident and it caused you to miss your daughter’s graduation, or a ski trip to the mountains, your personal injury lawyer will assist you in valuing those special damages. This includes both out-of-pocket expenses and intangible losses like missing your own 16th birthday or your senior year season of track and field due to a broken bone from a car accident.

Talk To A Lawyer Today

We are here to help. Part of our job is providing guidance and advice. Phone consultations are free. If you would like to speak with a lawyer today, call 704.749.7747 or click HERE to request a call from us. We know you have choices. We hope you choose to Recover With Us.