Is Future Medical Care Covered in a Car Accident Settlement?

Medical care is usually determined during a settlement. One of the things Baton Rouge accident lawyers always tell their clients is that the way they behave immediately following an accident can make or break their case. No matter how minor the crash, there are certain things you need to do after things settle down. Obviously, you want to account for everybody in your car and see if anybody is in dire need of medical help. Then you need to call 911. They’ll arrange to have an ambulance dispatched to the crash scene. They’ll also come out so they can conduct a thorough investigation of the accident.

One of the reasons you need to go to the hospital is so they can do the necessary tests to see if you’re injured. Your injuries need to be documented right away so you can make sure your medical care is covered by insurance. From there, it will depend on how severe your injuries are as to what kind of treatment you need. Either way, your Baton Rouge accident lawyer will work on making sure your insurance claim is paid. They’ll also make it clear that you expect all medical care – including future medical care – to be covered by the other driver’s insurance.

The Defendant Will Have to Pay Any Out-of-Pocket Medical Expenses

Even if your accident is minor, you’ll have some sort of medical bills. You may need surgery or physical therapy. Your doctor may tell you that you’ll need PT or chiropractic care for over a year. Ideally, your Baton Rouge accident lawyer will have settled your case prior to that. However, they do need to make a demand for future care. Your doctor can testify as to what kind of future treatment you’ll need. This way, you’re not left holding the bag for an accident that wasn’t your fault.

This demand for your medical bills to be paid extends to any kind of medical care related to your accident. Some of the things you may have to pay for out-of-pocket include:

  • Prescriptions
  • Gas, tolls, and parking for doctor and therapist appointments
  • Durable medical equipment such as a wheelchair, cane, walker, etc.
  • Co-pays for any medical appointments you need to use
  • Any fees for the ambulance or other medical transport
  • The hospital bills following the crash

As long as your Baton Rouge accident lawyer can prove you suffered these damages, you’ll have a good shot at being compensated.

Your Doctor May Need to Testify as to What Kind of Future Care You Need

Regardless of how good your Baton Rouge accident lawyer is, they’ll still need someone to testify about your future medical care. Your doctor or surgeon would be a great person to speak about your treatment. They have the best idea of what your treatment plan will be. You can also submit copies of your bills and “Explanation of Benefit” forms so the insurance company can be paid when you settle your case. If you have Medicare or Medicaid, they will expect to be reimbursed when you settle your case. In fact, they can put a lien against your lawsuit to ensure payment.

If You Settle Your Case, You Can’t Go Back for More Money Later

It’s important to note that, if your Baton Rouge accident lawyer can settle your case, you can’t go back later and complain that your condition is worse. As part of your lump-sum settlement, you agree that you will be solely responsible for any future medical care. Some settlement agreements break down how much of your settlement proceeds should be dedicated toward outstanding medical bills.

Don’t Settle for Less than the Full Amount of Future Care

When your attorney first starts settlement negotiations with the defendant’s insurance company, they’re not going to get a full and final offer. Both attorneys will go back and forth until they can reach a number both clients agree on. Your Baton Rouge accident lawyer will make sure your settlement covers any medical payments. The last thing you want is to be sued by a hospital years later for bills that didn’t get paid.

Call and Talk to an Experienced Baton Rouge Accident Lawyer Today

Most people don’t know what to do after a car crash. They don’t know when they should reach out to a Baton Rouge accident lawyer. The best thing to do is contact a lawyer right away. This way, they can make sure your claim is filed properly. Your initial consultation is free, and you don’t have to pay your attorney a dime until your case is resolved.