Using my 30 years of experience as a Car Crash Attorney I will be writing a series of Blog Articles explaining how North Dakota car crash claims are handled. This is Car Crash Blog Part 3: No Fault Insurance – Medical Expenses Part 2.
Your No-Fault insurance company has a right to and will obtain copies of your medical records. It is important that you honestly and accurately describe your injuries and symptoms to your doctor.
Your No-Fault insurance company also has the right to require that a doctor chosen and paid by your insurance company evaluate you. Often when an insurance company requests that you attend an evaluation with a doctor that it has selected it is an indication that the insurance company intends to stop paying your medical benefits. If your insurance company requests that you attend an examination by its doctor you should consult an attorney.
These required medical evaluations are often called “independent medical examinations” or IMEs. However, they are not independent. Often the doctor performing the examination often receive huge sums annually from insurance companies for performing these required examinations.
Sometimes your No-Fault insurance company will not pay the entire medical bill for treatment of your crash related injuries. The insurance company will try to convince your medical provider that the provider’s charges are not the “usual and customary” charge for the treatment you received. Since the bill has not been paid in full there is a balance due. Your medical provider may send you a bill for the unpaid balance. If this happens you need to consult an attorney. In every case I have seen the No-Fault insurance company does not have a valid reason for reducing the amount it has paid. It is just trying to save money by either convincing the medical provider to take less than full payment or for you to pay the balance due. If you demand that the insurance pay the bill in full as required by North Dakota law most often the insurance company will make the full payment.
If you have health insurance or you qualify for Medicaid or Medicare it is very important that your medical care provider bill your car crash injury treatment to your No-Fault insurance. Sometimes the billing department makes a mistake and bills your health insurance, Medicaid or Medicare for your car crash treatment. You must correct this mistake as soon as possible. If you have a serious injury and recover damages for your personal injuries from the car crash you do not have to reimburse your No-Fault insurance for the medical expenses that it pays. However, you will have to reimburse your health insurance, Medicaid or Medicare for any payments that are made for your car crash injury treatment.
After it has paid $10,000 in benefits your No-Fault insurance company can coordinate payment of medical expenses with your health insurance. Coordination of benefits usually means that your health insurance pays first and then your No-Fault insurance pays for any expenses not covered by your health insurance. Coordination does not apply to Medicaid or Medicare benefits. If you receive information from your No-Fault insurance that it intends to coordinate benefits you should consult an attorney. I have seen many cases where the No-Fault insurance has not followed the law regarding coordination of benefits ultimately reducing the compensation that a person that has been seriously injured in a car crash is able to recover.
You can find additional information about car crash injuries and No-Fault insurance benefits on my websites: 25% Contingent Fees on Selected Car Crash Cases and eLawPros. Or call me at 701-630-1846 if you have questions about insurance coverage for your medical expenses caused by your car crash injuries.