Have you received treatment from a hospital, commonly arising from an emergency requiring hospital treatment or treatment following an automobile accident, and then received a large bill or bill you believe to be grossly overcharged for the actual services provided by the hospital.
Although hospitals are entitled to reasonable payment for services rendered, some hospitals grossly overcharge patients and file fraudulent hospital liens for amounts that are far more than what a patient should pay for in exchange for the hospital’s services. These hospitals’ schemes are sometimes fraudulent and are designed to intimidate a client into paying an excessive bill over the threat of collections, harassment, reporting adversely on one’s credit report, and even threatening legal action.
Commonly, hospital liens arise following treatment for a car accident or truck wreck, which in and of itself can be devastating to you and your family. You are hurt and need immediate hospital attention. Texas lawmakers tried to help ensure that hospitals would immediately treat all accident victims, even those without automobile insurance, by passing a law that allows hospitals to attach a lien on any recovery you make from your injuries.
Most Texans are not aware of this statute and are confused or have questions when this happens.
Why didn’t the hospital bill my health insurance? The short answer is the hospital knows that if you receive a settlement from your car wreck, they may be able to get far more money by pursuing your claim through taking as much of the recovery from your auto accident settlement than filing against your health insurance that usually pays a contractually adjusted rate far lower than what hospitals recover from your potential auto accident recovery. The hospital lien statutes usually allow hospitals and emergency medical service providers to seek full payment from any settlement you get for your accident. However, the hospital’s rights are not absolute, as the victim has the right to contest the amount charged if the amount is fraudulent or grossly unfair.
Who Has to Pay
Why didn’t the person who hit me have to pay for my medical bills? When you are involved in an accident, and you make a claim against the insurance company for the injuries the other person caused, they will not pay anything until you agree to settle your entire claim. This can include payments for the time you missed from work, medical bills, prescription medications, and your claim for pain and suffering. The hospital will not send them your other bills or documents to support your recovery—they want their hospital bill paid, even if that means you receive no money for your other damages.
How do I get this resolved?
You need to make sure you hire a top-notch attorney dedicated to negotiating your hospital lien down to a fair and reasonable amount for the treatment received. Not hiring a personal injury attorney to review your claim could cost you money and leave you owing medical bills after your settlement—and you end up being on the losing end. If you believe you have been a victim of a fraudulent bill or hospital lien, you have rights, remedies and are not alone.
Some of the most frequently asked questions we get are:
- Why didn’t the hospital bill my health insurance?
- Why didn’t the person who hit me have to pay for my medical bills?
- How do I get this resolved?