Navigating the world of medical expenses and insurance can be complex, especially when it comes to understanding what you can claim. If you have used your health insurance in Tennessee and incurred medical expenses, you might wonder if you can claim them in a lawsuit.
The good news is that you are entitled to all of your medical expenses, regardless of what your health insurance has paid. Tennessee is one of a few states to recognize the “collateral source” rule, allowing victims to recover their total medical expenses. That does not mean the insurance company will not fight you. Sometimes, you might need to file a lawsuit to protect your rights.
For a free case assessment, contact our Tennessee personal injury attorneys at Howe Law at (844) 876-4357 today.
Can I Still Recover My Medical Expenses if I Used My Health Insurance in Tennessee?
You can claim the full range of your medical expenses even if you used health insurance after an accident in Tennessee. This includes using Medicare and TennCare (Medicaid) plans. Private or public health insurance should be used for all doctor, hospital, pharmacy, and therapy bills resulting from a car accident or personal injury.
There are many reasons why health insurance is not utilized after a car accident. After serious accidents, some are unable to provide their insurance card to the hospital or don’t have it on them. Upon discharge, some think health insurance will deny the claim because it is auto accident related, and think it is unfair for the other driver to get a discount because of your health insurance.
The best reason to use health insurance after an accident is because Tennessee recognizes the “collateral source” rule under T.C.A. § 24-5-113. This means the at-fault party does not get a reduction in liability because the injured party has health insurance. However, you should consult our Nashville personal injury attorneys to determine what expenses you are entitled to. Collateral sources can also be cash discounts, write-offs, or billing reductions.
For example, if you incurred a $10,000 hospital bill from a car accident and then submitted the bill to health insurance, you might pay $2,000 of the hospital bill. The amount you pay is reduced by in-network benefits and payments from the health insurance company. Because of Tennessee’s collateral source rule, you are able to recover the full $10,000 from the at-fault driver, not just the $2,000 paid. Keep in mind if you receive compensation after a car accident, then your health insurance provider has a right to subrogation of the benefits paid.
What if I Received Insurance Discounts on My Medical Expenses in Tennessee?
If you are a resident of Tennessee and have been involved in an accident caused by someone else’s negligence, it’s important to know that you are entitled to compensation for all medical expenses incurred. This is regardless of any discounts or insurance coverage you might have received. Tennessee is one of the many states that protect plaintiffs from defendants’ attempts to reduce payments by using such arguments.
When you purchase insurance, you enter into a contractual agreement with your insurer. As such, you are entitled to the benefits of that agreement. Any discounts you receive because of that agreement should not affect the compensation you receive for the injuries you sustained because of someone else’s actions.
Your economic damages should include the total value of your medical expenses, not just the reduced rate or out-of-pocket costs you might have paid. This is to ensure that you are fully compensated for all medical expenses incurred as a result of the defendant’s actions. So, if you have been involved in an accident and have incurred medical expenses, do not hesitate to seek legal representation to help you get the compensation you deserve.
How Can I Recover My Medical Expenses After an Accident in Tennessee?
When you find yourself in a situation where you incur medical bills as a consequence of an accident, there are two primary methods of receiving payment. The first option is to file a claim with the insurance company of the driver responsible for the accident. Alternatively, if the other driver is uninsured, you can file a claim with your own insurance provider. Both of these actions will ensure that you receive the necessary funds to cover your medical expenses.
File an Insurance Claim
The insurance system in Tennessee is based on fault. This means that if you are in an accident and get injured, you must file a claim with the other driver’s insurance company to receive compensation. However, the process is not straightforward.
Before agreeing to pay, insurance companies will typically demand proof of the accident and your medical expenses. Working with insurance companies can be challenging since they are notorious for being uncooperative and will look for reasons to deny claims. As a result, it is crucial to have appropriate documentation and a good understanding of the insurance system to help you receive the compensation you are entitled to.
File a Lawsuit
Dealing with an insurance company that rejects your claim or makes it difficult for you can be an exasperating and stressful experience. If you find yourself in this situation, your best course of action is to take legal measures and initiate a lawsuit. Although a lawsuit can be effective in pressuring the insurance company to cover your medical expenses, there might be circumstances where you need to take the responsible party to court and demonstrate their carelessness in causing the accident.
One of the advantages of filing a lawsuit is that you might be entitled to claim greater damages and receive a higher amount of financial compensation compared to an insurance settlement. In contrast to insurance claims, a lawsuit can encompass non-economic damages, such as pain and suffering, which can significantly impact your quality of life and demand compensation.
In case you opt for a settlement, negotiations are crucial. While settlements are typically associated with lawsuits, they don’t always culminate in a jury verdict. Instead, we must engage in discussions with the defendant to convince them to pay for your medical bills and damages.
If we have compelling evidence, persuading the defendant to compromise and pay for your losses might be relatively simple. However, when evidence is hard to come by, a settlement might not be the best alternative. Knowing when to settle and when to initiate a lawsuit requires experience and a profound comprehension of the legal system.
Our Tennessee Personal Injury Attorneys Can Help
Call our Columbia, TN personal injury attorneys at Howe Law at (844) 876-4357 today for a free case review.