This is the second in a series of three blog posts addressing the value an attorney can add to a personal injury case.
In many cases an injured person incurs more in medical bills than the negligent driver's insurance policy limits. In these situations, we can make sure that bills are paid by medical payment coverage, workers compensation, health insurance, Medicaid, or Medicare.
Once the bills are paid, the insurer that paid the bills will make a claim against your accident settlement proceeds. We can minimize the amount these insurers take from your settlement proceeds by employing legal doctrines such as the made whole doctrine, the common fund doctrine, and federal anti-lien statutes.
Additionally, many clients do not have health insurance and have unpaid medical bills they owe their physicians. We have worked with many hospitals and physicians in the Treasure Valley over the years and have developed a reputation of integrity and honesty. They know that if one of our clients truly does not have the capacity to pay for services then they will reduce their charges.
For example, a recent Boise client of mine incurred $84,000 of medical bills. The negligent driver only had the state minimum liability policy limits of $25,000. I was able to work providers who agreed to significantly reduce their charges. We were able to pay all of the client's medical bills, my attorney fees and put $7,000 in my client's pocket. I added value in this case by negotiating a reduction of around $75,000 in medical bills.
So an attorney can add a lot of value to a case by getting health insurers and medical providers to reduce the amount they take out of your settlement, thereby increasing the amount of money that goes in your pocket.