I have been injured in a collision that was not my fault. Who pays for my medical bills?
Ultimately, the at-fault party is responsible for the payment of your medical bills.
If the at-fault party was adequately insured, the party’s insurance company is responsible. Unfortunately, the other party’s insurance company will not pay any money toward your medical bills until a final settlement or verdict is reached on the entirety of your injury claim. In the meantime, you must look elsewhere for coverage.
There may be more than one source of insurance benefits available to cover medical expenses, including Personal Injury Protection available under your own auto insurance policy as well as your health insurance. Each case is different.
Our firm will assist you in maximizing all available insurance benefits so that you can seek the treatment you need without worrying about medical bills stacking up.
I have been injured in a collision that was not my fault and cannot work. Who pays for my income or wage loss?
Ultimately, the at-fault party is responsible for payment of your income loss. Unfortunately, the at-fault party’s insurance company will not pay any money toward your income loss until a final settlement or verdict is reached on the entirety of your injury claim. In the meantime, you must look elsewhere for coverage.
There may be more than one source of insurance benefits available to cover at least a portion of your income loss, including Personal Injury Protection (PIP) under your own auto insurance policy, as well as disability insurance you may carry.
Our firm will assist you in identifying available disability coverage to maximize income replacement when you recover from your injuries.
I have been injured in a collision that was not my fault. What happens if the other party was uninsured or did not have enough insurance?
We will investigate the availability of insurance by identifying all responsible parties and the extent of their insurance coverage. Additionally, in cases where all responsible parties do not have sufficient combined coverage, we will pursue your own underinsured motorist coverage to maximize your financial recovery.
What happens if my PIP coverage is exhausted and I still need treatment?
Once all PIP coverage is exhausted, your medical providers should submit collision-related bills to your health insurance plan. Most health insurance carriers will delay paying collision-related bills until you can show that all available PIP benefits are exhausted or are no longer available. We assist our clients with all paperwork necessary to transition medical claims to the health insurance plan.
What if my PIP carrier wants me to undergo an “insurance” medical examination (IME)?
Your auto insurance policies likely allow the insurance company to request that you attend medical examinations by a doctor or doctors chosen by the insurance company. If your carrier asks you to attend a medical exam and you don’t comply, you will have difficulty receiving continued benefits.
When our clients are faced with a request for an insurance medical exam, we ensure that the requested examination complies with the law and insurance policy before agreeing to the examination.
What compensation am I entitled to if I have been hurt in an accident that was another person’s fault?
The value of each claim is unique. Ultimately your claim value is based on what a jury would award if the case went to trial. The following are examples of damages you can claim:
- Medical expenses, past and future
- Income loss, past and future
- Diminished ability to earn money
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Depression and anxiety
- Emotional distress
- Activity limitation
- Household help
- Cost of Job Accommodations
- Medical equipment
- Out-of-pocket expenses
- Property Damage such as the cost to repair your vehicle or payment for total loss
You have the burden of proving each element of the damages. Often this requires input from a variety of witnesses unique to each claim. Witnesses may include family, friends, and others who know how the injuries have affected you. Expert witnesses such as doctors, therapists, vocational rehabilitation specialists, economists, life care planners, and other specialists may also be helpful depending on the magnitude of your injury(ies).
What is subrogation?
Where there is a negligence action, your own insurance companies will almost always claim reimbursement for benefits they paid out because of an injury. This concept is commonly referred to as subrogation. The subrogation claim is generally resolved at the time you resolve your claim against the responsible parties.
At Cascade Injury Law, we aggressively negotiate with companies seeking reimbursement from you to maximize your net proceeds.
How long does it take to resolve a personal injury claim?
Each case is different. It is best to evaluate a case when you have recovered from your injuries or at least reached a point of recovery when your doctors are able to give an opinion about the future effects of the injuries, including ongoing medical expenses and disability. At that point, it is possible to do a reasonable evaluation and then make a settlement demand to insurance companies for the responsible parties. The case is then resolved by negotiated settlement, arbitration, or trial.
What happens if I don’t know the identity of the responsible party?
This can be a serious problem. However, a good attorney can often investigate effectively to find the information needed to identify responsible parties and pursue the claim.
Cascade Injury Law offers free consultations to discuss whether your claim can be pursued.
What should I do if I have been in a collision?
If you have been in a collision, do the following at the scene:
- Call 9-1-1 and request that the police come
- If you are injured, ask for medical attention
- If you are able, take photos of the scene of the crash
- If you are able, take photos of the damage to the vehicles involved
- Get the names and contact information of all witnesses
- Take photos of the scene of the collision
- Take photos of the vehicles involved
- Take photos of objects such as jersey barrier and trees which may have been struck by the vehicles involved
- Gather names, addresses, and phone numbers of others involved in the crash
- Take photos of driver’s licenses and insurance cards of other drivers involved in the collision
- Take photos of license plate numbers of other vehicles involved in the collision
Sometimes the police don’t come to the scene of a collision or fail to do a full investigation. If this happens to you, it is vitally important that you or someone on your behalf gather all the above information.
After you leave the scene, do the following:
- If you suspect you are injured, seek medical attention immediately
- Advise your insurance company of the incident
- Advise the other party’s insurance company of the incident
- Seek the advice of an attorney before giving a recorded statement to insurance companies
What is a statute of limitations?
What happens if I am partially at fault for my accident?
What is pain and suffering in a personal injury claim?
How will I recover compensation for a personal injury claim?
What should I do if I don’t think I can afford to hire an attorney?
there is a lot at stake. An attorney can help you fight for the compensation you deserve and maximize your chances of success. In most instances, you only pay attorney fees if you win your case. When you choose Cascade Injury Law, PLLC, for your case, you will always be informed upfront of our fees and will not have any surprises.