It is not a coincidence that medical expenses are one of the primary reasons Virginians file bankruptcy. Medical costs are out of control. Very few uninsured Virginians can afford to pay for a hospitalization or treatment of a chronic condition out of pocket.
Many of my personal injury clients have over $100,000 in medical expenses. All it takes is a couple days in the hospital following an auto accident and bills can easily climb into six figures. The truth is that hospitals and doctors rarely collect what they charge unless the patient is uninsured and has a personal injury claim. If the patient has health insurance, you can guarantee that the insurance company has negotiated rates as low as 25% of the actual charge. Yet for the uninsured they are expected to pay the health care provider back in full. Absent a personal injury claim, the patient may be forced to file bankruptcy.
If the patient was treated for a personal injury in Virginia the health care provider can assert a lien on the settlement. If the patient was treated at VCU, UVA or another state facility, the provider has a lien of 100% of the charges even though they would never have been reimbursed dollar for dollar if the patient was insured. Private hospitals have a lien of $2500 and physicians in private practice have a lien of $750.
If you are uninsured and have been injured in an accident in Virginia, you are probably being hounded by debt collectors. It is important to consider all of your options including filing a personal injury claim and contacting an experienced consumer lawyer.
Attorney Josh Silverman is a good friend and colleague of Jason Krumbein. Josh is a solo practitioner at the Silverman Law Firm LC in Richmond, Virginia. Josh focuses his practice on representing victims of personal injuries in Virginia due to automobile accidents, medical malpractice, nursing home abuse, and defective products. For more information about Josh Silverman please visit his website at www.joshsilvermanlaw.com or call him at (804) 325-4992.