Typically when someone needs to seek medical treatment they either pay for the services directly or their health insurance policy pays. If you have been in a car accident you may be wondering how to handle your medical bills though. Neither of the normal options make sense. You shouldn’t have to use your own money or health insurance to cover your medical expenses if the other driver was at fault for the accident. It is possible that the expenses are so high you couldn’t possibly pay for them yourself. Your health insurance policy will likely refuse to pay for treatment because the injuries were caused by the negligence of someone else. Yet the doctor will be seeking payment for the services provided.
In Florida, Personal Injury Protection (PIP) and Letter of Protection (LOP) are two ways that help people in this predicament. A car accident attorney can help clarify how both might be helpful to your specific situation. Let’s examine the details of these two protections:
Personal Injury Protection (PIP)
PIP is also known as Florida’s no-fault auto insurance. Every vehicle owner in Florida is required to have PIP. The idea is that it will protect drivers if they suffer injury in a car accident. In addition, relatives that live in your house will also be covered. The protection exists no matter who is at fault for the car accident. PIP coverage will pay 80% of necessary medical bills, 60% of lost wages and 100% of household services. The PIP policy does have a limit. For most people the limit is $10,000. Expenses beyond that amount will not be paid.
Letter of Protection (LOP)
Since you don’t want to pay or can’t afford to pay and your health insurance company refuses to pay, the doctor may be concerned that payment will not ever be rendered. The auto insurance carrier of the other driver should pay for your medical expenses but it may take months or years to settle the case. A letter of protection allows you to receive the necessary medical treatment without having to pay for it out-of-pocket. A car accident attorney provides a letter of protection to the doctor or medical provider. This document promises to pay for the medical bills out of the settlement once it is reached. The LOP is a contract that ensures the doctor that payment will be received eventually. The attorney is obligated to make sure the doctor receives the payment due out of the funds acquired from a trial or case settlement. If the case results in no recovery then the medical provider has the right to pursue the cost of the bill from the patient.
Need Help from a Car Accident Attorney in Tampa?
If you were injured in a car accident and are worried about how to pay your medical bills, you don’t have to go it alone. Our injury attorneys are ready to help. There are no up front fees to handle your case and your consultation is always free! Contact one of our Tampa Bay law offices today.