If I’m in a car accident, should I use an attorney?
Should I use an attorney is a question I have thought about whether to answer in this way or not. I don’t want to come off promotional, but I’m asked it so often that this is as good a place as any to answer it.
In no way is this legal advice, I’m just giving you my opinion on things when it comes to how I treat you whether you are in an accident or not, I treat everyone the same.
My job is to get you to function and feel better. To get you back to your normal life and to get your pain levels down. In no way does it change how I treat you.
So my opinion is if you’ve been in a car accident, then you should absolutely get an attorney.
I say this because I’ve been doing this for 18 years, I’ve seen thousands of personal injury cases and more often than not the other insurance carrier that’s responsible for your pain and suffering doesn’t always give you the easiest of times.
Are there some insurance companies that it runs smoothly and everyone’s happy and it’s good and we move beyond it? Absolutely.
But from what I’ve seen more often than not if you don’t use an attorney, things can be difficult.
Even when you do use an attorney they’re a bit difficult.
What do I mean by all that?
Most people’s personal injury protection or their med pay or their car insurance medical benefits that they are using, almost everyone has some coverage. Very rarely does it cover at 100% and that’s when the confusion comes into. So person gets into an accident, they file a claim and they say ‘hey I’m going to use my car insurance for my medical services,’ whether it’s in an emergency room or in a doctors office or it’s with me they come in and many people assume that the service is covered at 100%. In some cases it is, but in most cases it’s not. It’s usually a percentage, whether it’s 70%, 80%, 90%, but it’s always a percentage or copay or deductible.
And the deductible is the amount of money you have to pay before the doctors get paid.
So what happens is, if you don’t use an attorney, most doctors are going to want you to pay that copay or that deductible each and every time they see you.
And that’s because it works just like any other insurance if you go to a doctor and you weren’t in an accident, you have a copay to pay.
Now, if you’re in an accident, and it was someone else’s fault, someone hit you, they’re responsible for it.
Why should you have to take money out of your pocket in order to pay that copay or that deductible?
I don’t feel like you should, I think that responsible parties should have to pay for that and that’s where this whole problem comes into, so it may sound easy, and it may sound happy that they’ll pay it, but lots of times it’s difficult to get them to pay the portion that they’re supposed to pay.
In the long run, you have to take money out of your pocket for something that wasn’t your fault.
That’s where an attorney comes into it. Attorneys can help guide you in the direction of they’ll get the other insurance companies to pay for what they’re responsible for. The doctors know you’re using an attorney, they’re not going to make you pay that copay each and every time and they’ll get the other insurance companies to settle at the end to get the doctors paid.
And that’s where it helps the most. If it’s someone else’s fault, you shouldn’t have to take time and money out of your pocket in order to get better because they made a mistake.
The next thing is, especially up in New Jersey, New Jersey has this thing called New Jersey Healthcare Guidelines and doctors follow it in order for the insurance companies to reimburse them for their services they provided.
Many many times the insurance companies will deny things for whatever reason they come up with and when they get those denials, doctors have to appeal the process and it turns into this process that can drag on for months and months and when you use an attorney to help you with that, they can help speed that process up.
So for example, I had a patient was nearing the end of her care, she was still presenting multiple symptoms from her neck to her low back. The insurance company said cut her off from the care, we’re not going to pay anymore, and they could give a bunch of reasons, and sometimes I don’t think those reasons are validated and what we do is we say ‘hey’ to the patient, I think it’s a good idea to call your attorney, have the attorney call the adjuster and 9/10 times an attorney calls them, they get that process sped up, they can get the adjuster to request an independent medical exam, and they can get you back on your treatment plan.
There’s a lot of ways they can help.
Should I use an attorney? Again, my opinion here is solely just my opinion, and in no way is legal advice. If you are thinking about using an attorney from an accident, make sure you call them, talk to them and voice all your concerns to see if they’re right for you.
When I treat you or any of our clinics our main job is to get you to function and to feel better whether you are using an attorney or not. I’m going to treat you exactly the same way. It’s when things get a little rough with insurance companies aren’t as easy with you as you would want them to be is when an attorney can help.
As I mentioned earlier, I wasn’t real sure if I wanted to talk about that topic but I think it’s something that needs to be said because I get questions all the time, on whether they should use one or not.
The best way to find a good one is ask a friend or family member that used one before and had a good experience, if not, I know some that I use around town that we’ve had great experience with.
There’s good and bad, just like there’s good and bad doctors, so just make sure you do your due diligence and find one that you are comfortable with.