If you’re involved in a car accident or a slip & fall incident and are injured, you may be looking at some costly medical bills. These range from an ambulance ride to Emergency Room visits to follow-up appointments. The cost could multiply quickly and you may need to produce a decent chunk of money to put towards a deductible.
But what happens if you can’t afford your insurance deductible?
If you’ve been in this situation before, stressed and wondering how you’ll come up with the financial means to cover the cost of your insurance deductible, you’re not alone. Few drivers have the means readily available for such an expense.
If you fall into this category, we want you to know that you don’t need to lie awake at night feeling like you have no options and you’re stuck. If you can’t afford your insurance deductible, you won’t be prevented from moving forward with your insurance claim.
How the insurance deductible structure works
In short, a deductible is the financial amount you will be responsible for paying before the insurance company begins to chip in with the remainder. For example, if you hold an auto insurance policy with a Personal Injury Protection (PIP) of $10,000 and your total medical costs exceed $10,000, you will need to be responsible for the rest. And your personal medical insurance will then come into play.
Most private health insurance companies have deductibles on their policies, which require you to pay money out of pocket. If your total bill for medical services after an auto accident are $100,000 and the PIP of your auto insurance only covers $10,000, you need to go through your medical insurance carrier for the rest.
Insurance deductibles vary based on your policy. For instance, a high deductible health plan (HDHP) will result in lower monthly premiums but higher deductibles. And if you have a family health plan, the deductible will most likely be higher. The IRS currently allows insurance providers of HDHPs to have yearly deductible amounts of as high as $13,500 for families.
Do you have $13,500 lying around in the event of an accident? Most people don’t. And they shouldn’t be subjected to this financial hardship, especially if the accident is the fault of the other driver.
What happens when you can’t afford your insurance deductible?
It isn’t uncommon to ask this question. We deal with clients on a regular basis who are unsure of what to do in this event. They are unsure of where to turn because this isn’t an everyday occurrence.
However, it is for us. We know the local laws that support victims of these situations—laws set up to ease the financial burden. Some victims of an auto accident who can’t afford their deductible have to resort to drastic measures. They tap into their 401k retirement plan, go to a cheaper healthcare alternative which puts their health at risk, resort to high-interest credit cards thus paying more for their treatment, or they sell assets to pay.
If you can’t afford your insurance deductible, you do not need to resort to these measures. Being involved in an auto accident shouldn’t lead to falling on hard financial times.
To ensure the best result for your situation, consulting with an attorney first is your best option. And if you’re worried about up-front costs for hiring an attorney, there’s no need to worry. Contingency fee lawyers are paid by the insurance company, from the settlement, so there is no up-front cost to you.
Your options with no money up front
As mentioned, some attorneys will be willing to help you with no costs up front. This is one of the main concerns for many when put in this unfamiliar situation, but you can rest assured knowing you pay nothing until you win or settle your claim.
You may also be concerned about medical expenses that are the result of an accident where an insurance company needs to be contacted, such as an injury or damage to your property. For some, saying you can’t afford your insurance deductible may seem unimportant at the moment and medical treatment may be critical.
If this is the case, you aren’t out of options. Some doctors are willing to help with no money paid at the time of service. They are willing to provide care, then collect fees if and when you get paid from your claim. If you’re unsure of where to find physicians who work under this condition, we may be able to refer you to a few.
Information like this is invaluable, and many times only known by those who focus on the industry every day. This is why it is so important to call your lawyer when any such events occur in your life.
At RRBH Law, our lawyers are experienced in these complex situations and walk our clients through the process. Just check out this review of one of our founding partners:
“The Personal Injury Guru: Mr. Blanco-Herrera is by far the most knowledgeable attorney I have encountered in the field of Personal Injury in a long time. He is helpful, patient, and has a deep knowledge of Personal Injury Law in Florida.” – Jeffrey from Miami
Still struggling with your insurance deductible?
Our team at RRBH Law has helped many residents of South Florida to fight their insurance companies. Don’t let their deceptive wording prevent you from pursuing legal action against them if it’s in your best interest.