Whether in Mobile, Alabama or in Los Angeles, California, you can Google "MedPay Premiums" and find quick positives and negatives of coverage. However, the important question to ask is how MedPay affects you in your personal injury claim.
MedPay is insurance you purchase with your automobile insurance carrier that acts as a primary payer for medical bills related to an auto accident you are in. This can include situations where you are the driver, passenger, or pedestrian who is injured as a result of an automobile collision.
You need to be aware that insurance companies that provide MedPay have subrogation rights. This means your MedPay provider will demand that they get repaid from your personal injury settlement. This is almost always the case, with the lone exception occurring when an injured party receives the policy limits from the insurance company. The good news is that an attorney can often reduce the amount owned to the MedPay carrier.
If you have insurance with Medicare or Medicaid, it is important to understand that both will only pay medical bills on your behalf after your available MedPay benefits are exhausted. However, in the event that MedPay does not first pay the medical bills, Medicaid and Medicare will want full payment from MedPay. When this scenario arises, this cuts into the amount you receive as a settlement with the insurance company. This is where (and why) an attorney's help is necessary. An attorney can help negotiate and reduce the amount Medicaid and Medicare is entitled to receive and increase the bottom line for their clients.
The best case scenario for MedPay is when you do not have any other health insurance. In this scenario, it is appropriate to carry a high level of MedPay to protect you in the event of an injury.
Lastly, it is important to understand the impact MedPay may have with regard to your Underinsured/Uninsured Motorist coverage. First, UIM/UM coverage is additional insurance you can purchase with your insurance carrier in the event you are involved in an accident with someone who has no insurance or not enough insurance to cover your personal injury claim.
Several insurance companies have policy language that will impact your UM/UIM settlement if you have already received MedPay from the same incident. These insurance companies will reduce the amount of money they pay you in a settlement by the amount of money they provided you with MedPay. Essentially, if you have $5,000 in MedPay and you had a possible claim for $10,000 with your UM/UIM carrier, your net settlement will be reduced to $5,000.
While the circumstances differ from person-to-person and case-to-case, it is extremely important to have an attorney work with your personal injury case, especially as it relates to MedPay. The insurance companies can and will take advantage of confusing situations and an attorney can help.