Today, we’ll talk about medical payments coverage on your vehicle policy.
There are many kinds of coverage that we can purchase under our motorcycle or automobile insurance policies. Some of them are optional. This means we are not legally required to carry them.
As you know, Indiana only requires you to carry liability coverage in the amount of $25,00 per person, $50,000 per accident for bodily injuries, and $10,000 for property damage. Add uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage of the same limits and that makes you fully insured under Indiana law.
However, people often purchase full coverage policies that include medical payments coverage, inclusion coverage, and comprehensive coverage as well.
What Is Medical Payments Coverage?
Medical payments coverage is something that people don’t always appreciate and understand. What exactly is it and how do you use it? Medical payments coverage is coverage that’s available to you when an injury results from an automobile collision. It will provide payment for medical bills that cover the treatment of injuries resulting from that collision.
Sometimes, we find that medical payments coverage will pay the bills as soon as they’re accrued. In other cases, we find that medical payments coverage providers and non-standard policies will try to access any other health insurance you may have.
This means that if you have deductibles and co-pays, it wants your health insurance to pay the bulk of the bill. It will only step in and pick up the deductibles and co-pays that you would have to go out of pocket on. In any event, people need to understand what medical payments coverage is and how to properly use it.
What May Happen
If you’re injured in an accident and an ambulance arrives and takes you to the hospital, here’s we often find. The ambulance company and the hospital don’t want to bill your health insurance because your health insurance has deductions and reductions to what they will pay.
Therefore, if the hospital or the ambulance company can bill your automobile insurance company under the medical payments coverage, they’ll get paid more money. So they want to do that, and here’s the bad thing that will happen as a result:
A Potentially Bad Outcome
Consider that you’re injured in an accident. You take an ambulance ride to the emergency room. They take some x-rays, they treat you, and they release you with instructions to follow up with your family physician.
Then, the ambulance company and the emergency room quickly bill your medical payments coverage and they suck up all the coverage that would have been available to you.
Go down the road a little bit, and you may need physical therapy with some durable medical equipment, maybe a TENS unit, or maybe crutches. You would love to use that medical payments coverage for those items that are going to be truly out of your pocket because your health insurance isn’t going to pick up those items.
What You Should Do
So here’s what to do: contact your automobile insurance company as soon as possible following the accident or the collision and tell them that you will dictate which bills from which providers get paid by the medical payments coverage.
That way, you’ll save that medical payment coverage for your benefit and you can use it for your best interests and take care of the bills that you need to have paid. After all, it’s your insurance, you pay the premiums for it, so you should dictate how that coverage is to be used. It should not be dictated by the hospital or the ambulance company. You should be in control of that.
This is one of the things that we do for our clients. If you need help, or if you have any questions, simply reach out to me. I’ll be happy to get on the phone with you. We’ll talk things through and make sure that you’re properly squared away. Stay safe out there, enjoy the ride and we’ll talk later.