What are the sources of payment for medical bills when a child is involved in an automobile accident, bicycle accident, trucking accident, pedestrian accident or other accident / incident in the State of Florida? When a child suffers personal injuries as a result of a automobile, trucking, bicycle, or pedestrian accident, a parent often faces many challenges including the payment and responsibility for medical bills. There are various sources of payment that a parent should know about when obtaining treatment for an injured child. The source of payment may include the following:
PIP (Personal Injury Protection) – A child may qualify for PIP benefits under a parent’s insurance policy, a resident relative’s insurance policy, the at fault driver’s insurance policy, the at fault owner’s insurance policy, and / or the policy for the vehicle occupied by the child. The coverage and lack of coverage for a particular accident will depend on the type of accident (i.e. vehicle, bicycle, or pedestrian accident) and will depend on the type and availability of insurance coverage. When PIP is in place and the child qualifies as an insured or beneficiary of the insurance policy, PIP typically pays for 80 % of the medical bills that are reasonably related to the accident. There are caps or limits in place for each policy and under the Florida law. Parents should find out up front the amount of coverage that will be available so that alternate arrangements can be made for payment in the future when and if the PIP is exhausted or cut off.
Med Pay (Medical Payment). Med Pay coverage is similar to PIP coverage but it is a secondary coverage to the PIP coverage. In most instances, Med Pay coverage is optional coverage. In other words, not every automobile owner obtains Med Pay and, furthermore, Med Pay coverage is not required by it every state. Med Pay will cover bills that are not covered by PIP. The policy limits for the Med Pay portion of an insurance policy can range from $1,000 and go even exceed $20,000.
Health Insurance. When a child is injured due to a vehicle, automobile, trucking, bicycle, or pedestrian accident, health insurance may also provide benefits but it is typically coverage that applies only after PIP coverage and / or Med Pay coverage makes payment. There are limitations and restrictions when dealing with health insurance coverage. Furthermore, many health insurance plans require that a person treat in network and require that a person get a referral from the primary care doctor to see a specialist.
BI Coverage (Bodily Injury). BI coverage may also be available to cover medical bills. It should be noted that PIP, Med Pay, and health insurance pay medical bills as they are submitted. Unlike these coverage, BI coverage will only pay a one time settlement offer to resolve the case. BI coverage typically is not paid out over a period of time or by installments.
UM Coverage (Uninsured Motorist / Underinsured Motorist Coverage. Like BI coverage, UM typically will only make a one time payment or lump sum settlement to resolve a case. In many cases, UM benefits or payments are used to pay medical bills.
Because of the complexities of insurance laws and liability laws, it is helpful to contact the Child Injury Lawyer for advice, consultation and legal representation regarding these matters. The book titled – The ABCs of Child Injury – Legal Rights of the Injured Child – What Every Parent Should Know – has chapters on Medical Bills / Treatment, Automobile Accidents, and other topics. You can get this book for free at The ABCs of Child Injury.