Q: Is my lawyer being dishonest?
I hired a lawyer last year due to a automobile accident. A negligent driver rear ended me at a high speed. I have no health insurance, so the lawyer has partnered with an insurance company to get me treatment. The case manager for this insurance co. Has sent me to the sketchiest doctor, who does not know what they are doing. Will not let me choose my own doctor. Tells me " I can only get you treatment at places who work with our insurance company". Okay, sure. So I contacted my case manager telling him that I need ALL COPIES OF MY MEDICAL BILLS. Instead of responding to me, he tattles to my lawyer. My lawyer calls me questioning WHY I want copies of my medical bills. And yet, still does not provide them to me. Why is everyone hiding the bills from me ?Why is nobody telling me the value of my case ? I feel like I am being taken advantage of. I feel like they are racking up unnecessary medical bills and maybe even upcharging to get more of my settlement.Any help would be appreciated.
I'm sorry you are dealing with this situation. This is a common problem in personal injury cases where you don't have health insurance. The first priority should always be to get the medical care you need for recovery. That priority should also be accomplished with your interest first and foremost.
When someone has health insurance, the answer is simple. Get the treatment you need through health insurance. Then, a good lawyer can pursue your personal injury case for the maximum recovery while trying to negotiate with the health insurer to save you money in the long run. I've written several articles on this issue. You can find them on my firm website blog. The key is whether or not you have an experienced lawyer willing to fight for you.
When you don't have health insurance, you do have several other options for medical care. Some medical providers will provide care based on an agreement or lien to collect the bill later from your recovery. Several medical provider companies also exist. These companies will provide care while collecting later from your settlement. For these companies, the choice of physician is often limited to those providers who will contract with them. Again, the key is whether or not you have a good lawyer actually working for your benefit. The goal should always be to maximize your physical recovery and then your recovery from the case. Some lawyers have arrangements with medical providers that benefit the lawyer and medical provider over the client. That's wrong. I've heard more horror stories than I can count about settlements where some lawyer did not put his client first and foremost. Most often, these horror stories are from people who hired a billboard or television lawyer running a huge volume settlement mill. Your lawyer should be open and honest about the medical care and its potential cost to you. Your lawyer should be providing personal service for you.
I would suggest you talk with your lawyer. You need to know the potential value of your case as well as the limits of any insurance coverage available. You also need to know the arrangements or repayment issues involved with the medical providers. I wish you the best with your case.
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