If you are hurt in a car accident, need medical attention, and have your own health insurance, your insurance should cover the cost of your treatment. Upon seeking treatment, your primary health insurance will cover as much as is mandated by your policy. Arizona case law dictates that these plans may not assert a lien (a form of security interest or legal claim to then recoup the money spent on you) on your case or seek subrogation to recover for medical costs paid to your providers on your behalf. However, you will still be responsible for all of your co-pays as well as any additional costs your primary health insurance does not cover.
If you are fortunate to have car insurance with medical payments benefits or MedPay coverage, you can expect your insurance company to cover a portion of your medical bills up to the limit of your coverage. MedPay is a no-fault insurance coverage that will cover your medical costs regardless of who is at fault for the accident. MedPay can be used as the primary insurance to cover your medical expenses (if you do not have health insurance) or to supplement your primary health insurance.
If you do not have health insurance, MedPay provides one major benefit: you do not generally need to wait until you settle with the third party insurance company to pay your medical expenses or to cover your co-pays. Therefore, even before you receive any sort of settlement from the defendant’s car insurance, your out-of-pocket costs should be minimal.Of course, whether or not MedPay will take care of all or a majority of your medical expenses depends on your coverage limit.
Depending on the circumstances of your case, you could have multiple MedPay coverages available. For example, let’s say you have MedPay coverage on your own car insurance, but you are involved in a car accident as a passenger in your friend’s car. Since your MedPay coverage follows you if you are involved in an accident, your MedPay will cover your medical expenses up to the limits of your policy. If your friend also has MedPay coverage, you would have the benefit of her MedPay coverage because you were a passenger in her vehicle. Some insurance carriers may be entitled to reimbursement of the MedPay benefits paid on your behalf from any available third party coverage (i.e. the insurance that covers the car of the person who was at fault for the accident), but they are generally limited to recover for benefits paid in excess of $10,000.
Do not hesitate to contact Pak & Moring to discuss your situation, and to see if we can help you through this process.
(Please note: while informative, these posts are not intended to be formal legal advice and are not completely authoritative and should not be solely relied on as a primary basis for legal action.)