Yes. If you have health insurance, it will cover the injuries caused by a car accident just like it would cover any other condition. And it’s often the best way to get your medical bills paid in a hurry. And, if someone else caused the accident, you still have a right to pursue a claim against the at-fault driver.
However, there are a few things you should understand:
- Your health insurance probably won’t pay the full amount
- In Georgia, your health insurance company will probably ask you to repay the money out of your accident settlement
- A lawyer can help you keep some or all of the accident money instead of paying it all to the health insurer
Below, we’ll look at each of these issues in detail—and help you get the most money possible.
Will my health insurance pay all my costs, or just some of them?
It’s rare for health insurance to pay for all the medical costs involved in an accident. That’s because health insurance plans carry annual deductibles—often very large ones—as well as office co-pays whenever you visit the doctor. And, although some health insurance plans help reduce the cost of medication, in most cases you’ll be paying out of pocket for at least part of the cost for prescriptions.
Here’s what this means:
- You will probably have at least some out-of-pocket costs.
- It’s very important for you to still file a car accident claim. Your accident claim can pay 100% of your medical costs.
- It’s okay to do both. Use your health insurance to pay now, and talk to a car accident lawyer so that you recover the full amount, plus other damages, in time.
Why would I have to pay money back to my health insurer?
In Georgia, if your health insurance pays for a medical cost, and you win money for your injuries from a car accident claim, the health insurer may require that you repay them. This is because the car insurance money is meant to pay for the cost of medical bills, and the health insurance company is the one who actually carried that cost, not you.
(This kind of repayment is very controversial, and it’s illegal in some states, but it is legal in Georgia.)
However, you only have to repay them the actual amount that they paid in the first place—which may not have been the entire cost of your care. And there are ways you can reduce the amount you repay.
Can I reduce or avoid repaying my health insurer?
Quite possible—but you want to involve a lawyer as early as possible. Your lawyer can:
- Analyze your specific health insurance policy to see if you really owe the amount they say you do. It’s not uncommon for insurance companies to request repayment even if it isn’t strictly required.
- Determine whether state or federal law applies in your specific case. This can affect how much, and if, you have to pay money at all.
- Negotiate on your behalf. Everything in a car accident case can be negotiated. Your lawyer may be able to get the health insurance company to accept a smaller amount than they’re requesting.
Talk to an Atlanta Car Accident Lawyer for Free
Never let questions of repayment stop you from using your health insurance. It’s usually the fastest and best way to get the care you need—and you will likely come out ahead once the accident claim is settled. But don’t face this process alone. You need a legal professional as soon as possible.
We can connect you with some of the most experienced car accident attorneys in the state. With over 20 years of experience, we understand the complicated relationship between health insurance, car insurance, and your rights as a victim. Our attorneys are able to meet the insurance companies on a level playing field—and get you results.
Don’t be left wondering who’s going to pay for your injuries—or stuck repaying costs you can’t afford. Let us give you a FREE consultation. Call us at (404) 341-6555 or fill out the form to the right to get your free consultation today.