Personal Injury Lawyer
As you and your lawyer work through your personal injury case, you might start to see dollar signs. While the settlement amount has the potential to be quite large, don’t get excited just yet. There are a handful of entities and individuals that could file a lien against your case, with the following being just a few examples.
Government Healthcare Programs
If you don’t have the insurance coverage to pay for your medical bills after an accident and before your case is complete, you might qualify for Medicaid, Medicare, or another government-run healthcare program. These programs are meant to help individuals at a certain income level, but if you receive compensation after a lawsuit, they could have filed a lien against your settlement. These liens carry a six-year statute of limitations.
Private Insurance Companies
Perhaps your private health or auto insurance company paid for your medical bills after being in a personal injury accident. While this is a great benefit of having insurance, those insurance companies will typically file a lien against a lawsuit settlement. You should speak with your insurer to understand in which situations they would file a lien.
When you visit hospitals, physician’s offices, medical clinics and other healthcare facilities, you should inform them you are in the middle of a lawsuit regarding your injuries. It’s possible they’ll have you sign a lien agreement before they will provide treatment. This is a protection to you and the medical professional. It typically keeps you out of collections, and it ensures the professional gets paid from your settlement. There’s generally a statute of limitations on a healthcare provider lien, so you should be sure you find out what it is in your state.
When someone is injured at work, he or she typically has insurance coverage through workers’ compensation. If that’s the situation you’re in and you file a lawsuit against a third party, your employer may place a lien on the settlement. This will help to cover the proceeds your employer paid to the workers’ compensation insurance company.
Contacting a Personal Injury Lawyer
When you’re injured in any kind of accident, you deserve to be properly compensated. If a person or an entity paid your medical bills while in the midst of your lawsuit, you could have one or more liens filed against your case. Contact a lawyer, like a personal injury lawyer from Hickey & Turim, to learn about liens and what you can expect after settlement.