As an injury lawyer, I always recommend that my clients advise their medical providers to bill their health insurance for all their medical treatment following an accident. However, accident victims may have another source to pay their medical bills, it’s called “medpay,” which is short for medical payments coverage. Read the blog below, “Is medpay worth it – an injury lawyer perspective.”
This topic has been talked about a lot online but recently I watched a video on YouTube where a speaker said that medpay was not that important. I disagree.
When you get in an accident, the insurance for the person who caused the accident will NOT pay for your medical bills until your case settles. In the meantime, your medical providers want to get paid. If the bills don’t get paid, they will send the bills to collections which might damage your credit rating.
Is medpay beneficial from an injury lawyer perspective? Read on to find out.
Who is covered by medpay?
In short, if you’re in a vehicle when it gets in an accident, you may be covered by medpay. So, if the car’s insurance policy has a $5,000 medpay policy and there are three people in the car, all three can utilize up to $5,000 to pay for their medical bills.
Is medpay mandatory in Illinois?
No. Medpay is an optional coverage in the state of Illinois. However, we strongly recommend that you have medpay insurance in your auto policy. Why? Keep reading.
The benefits of using medpay
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve signed up clients who ask me as their injury lawyer what they should do about their medical bills. While more people have health insurance, most of us have higher deductibles than we used to. We also often have co-pays every time we see a provider.
There are a lot of people out there who cannot afford these expenses. Medpay is the answer. First, you should always insist that your medical providers bill your health insurance. However, the co-pays and deductibles are the accident victim’s responsibility. It doesn’t make a lot of sense from an injury lawyer perspective. But we’ve seen a lot of bills sent to collections because of medical bills, even though the accident was not the victim’s fault.
If you have medpay insurance, you can and should submit your co-pays and deductible to your auto insurance carrier for payment. If you do not have health insurance at all, medpay can pay whatever medical bills you incur, up to your policy limits – regardless who was at fault for the accident.
Medpay is cost effective
The cost of medpay is extremely inexpensive! According to Glenview, Illinois, Farmers Insurance agent Erick Weingardt, you can add $5,000 in medpay to your auto insurance policy for approximately $10 every six months and you can increase that to $10,000 in medpay for only a few dollars more (depending on your driving record).
Erick said “Medical coverage is an important coverage for all drivers to include on their
auto insurance policy. It pays for all people in the vehicle, regardless of fault. The medical coverage will pay most, if not all, of your health insurance deductible & co-pays. Many people need to use this coverage even when the accident was caused by the other driver. Auto insurance companies do not want to offer a blank check, so they wait to settle. With medpay, you get your medical bills paid right away. For good drivers, the cost is only $1 to $2 a month for $5,000 or $10,000 of medical coverage.”
What medpay does not cover
There is something called personal injury protection (PIP) that is offered in some states. That is similar but slightly different from medpay. I have yet to have a client with pip coverage in Illinois.
The main difference is that PIP coverage also compensates the injured party for, among other things, their lost wages that were the result of their injuries.
Finally, medpay is great but if you are involved in a third-party accident, meaning the accident was caused by another (at-fault) party, then your auto insurance policy will seek reimbursement, if and when you settle/resolve your case.
However, pursuant to a legal theory, your auto insurance company will likely reduce the amount you owe by 1/3.
In sum, your injury lawyer has had so many cases where medpay has been an effective tool to help pay an accident victim’s medical bills, that we strongly recommend getting at least $5,000 in medpay on your auto policy.
For a free quote on auto insurance, contact Erick Weingardt at (847) 729-4620.
For a free legal consultation, feel free to call our office at 847-305-4105.