Often when we sit down with a prospective client who was involved in a serious trucking crash, one of their first questions is, “I wasn’t at fault in this crash, so who’s going to pay my medical bills?” As is often the case in the law, the answer is nuanced.
Under Illinois law, if the truck driver was the negligent party, the truck driver (usually covered by the trucking company's insurance) is responsible to pay for your reasonable and necessary medical care and treatment for your injuries suffered in the crash – including medical treatment reasonably necessary to be received in the future. Sounds great, right? Well, it’s not quite so simple.
Trucking companies or their insurance companies will not pay your bills as they come in; that’s not the way it works. Instead, the insurance company will pay your medical bills as a result of a settlement or a verdict. Oftentimes, this payment will not be until years after the crash actually occurred. That can leave crash victims struggling to stay above water in the interim.
So what options do crash victims have to help pay their bills?
Your Own Health Insurance
You buy health insurance to protect yourself from a mountain of medical bills if something goes wrong. Trucking crashes, oftentimes, are that something wrong.
Most health insurance policies are required to pay for your medical care and treatment regardless of whether a crash was the cause of your injuries. Your job is to get the treatment you need to get better. Upon arrival at the hospital or doctor’s office, provide them with your medical card and have them bill your health insurance company.
Medical Payment Coverage
Another option for folks injured by a negligent truck driver is to utilize your medical payment (Medpay) coverage through your own automobile insurance policy. Some people purchase Medpay and others don’t. If you don’t have Medpay insurance, it should be something you consider. The premiums are generally fairly low and it can be a huge help if you’re ever in financial trouble because of mounting bills after a crash.
Under your Medpay coverage, your own insurance company will pay the medical expenses for you (and passengers) up to your medpay coverage limits – regardless of who was at fault in the crash. Medpay coverage can help injured clients pay some or all of their medical bills. This can be especially beneficial when bills are coming in, but you have not been cleared to go back to work.
Contact Shannon Law Group If You've Been In A Truck Accident
If you don’t have health insurance or medical payment coverage, make sure that you get it. Most of our clients didn’t expect to need these financial protections but are glad they had it when life happens.
If you are suddenly facing a mountain of medical bills after a crash, feel free to call Shannon Law Group at 312-578-9501 or toll-free at (886) 881-9980 to schedule a free consultation. You can also fill out our online contact form. We are always happy to discuss your options with you.