After being in a car accident, you should not have to worry about getting your medical bills and lost wages paid. In this video, Personal Injury Attorney Ben Schwartz answers 3 different viewer questions relating to getting medical bills and lost wages paid after a Delaware car accident.
Hey, I’m Attorney Ben Schwartz,
Today we are going to answer some viewer questions. These viewer questions are sort of following a theme. The theme is after a Delaware car accident, how do you get your medical expenses and your lost wages paid?
So, the first question that I am going to deal with today is from Jim in Dover, Delaware. Jim, thanks for sending me this question. He basically said I don’t know if I can afford to get medical care because I don’t have health insurance. Folks this is after a car accident that occurred in the state of Delaware. Jim says if I pay out of pocket, can I get paid back? I hate to not directly answer the question, but my answer to this question is, what difference does it make? You should not be paying out of pocket for medical care after a car accident in the state of Delaware and the reason is that under Delaware law every car registered and insured in the state of Delaware is required to carry a type of insurance called personal injury protection. Some people call this PIP, some people call it no-fault insurance. It pays for your medical bills and your lost wages after the car accident regardless of who’s at fault.
So, Jim if you are injured in a car accident in Delaware, I don’t really think you should be worrying about paying for medical treatment out of your own pocket. I think you should take your insurance information, and provide it to the hospital, walk-in clinic, doctor, physical therapist, etc., and let them worry about billing your auto insurance and getting paid.
The second question is from Sheila in Milford. She wrote in about an accident that was an on-the-job accident. She says my job told me to use workers’ compensation insurance. Is that right? The answer is yes. You certainly can use the workers’ compensation insurance provided to you by your employer to pay for your medical treatment and your lost wages after the auto accident. You can also use the car insurance on the vehicle that you were occupying. Again, this is called personal injury protection, PIP, or no-fault insurance. Either way, it is not going to make a huge difference. There are pros and cons to using one versus the other, but if you go to an attorney and have the attorney assist you with the case, the attorney can work out those little wrinkles.
I will give you an example of what I am talking about. If you use workers’ comp insurance for your lost wages for the time you are out of work after an on-the-job car accident, workers’ comp is going to pay you two-thirds of your average weekly wage. If you use personal injury protection, if you use auto insurance instead to cover those same lost wages after your Delaware car accident, the auto insurance is going to pay you 80 percent. So, if you go to an attorney one of the things that I would do, one of the things that most attorneys will do, as a courtesy for their clients is they will make a claim with the PIP carrier, with the personal injury protection insurer for the difference between the two thirds and the 80 percent. That way you get everything that you are entitled to. But to answer the question, Sheila you can use workers’ comp. You can use auto insurance. Whatever gets the bills paid, I think that’s cool.
The third question is from Dan in Hartley, Delaware. He says I’m not getting paid for time lost from work for going to doctor’s appointments and shouldn’t I be getting those lost wages? The answer is that I want to distinguish between the situation, is where you’re missing time from work, you’re missing those hours, you’re missing those wages because you had to go to a doctor’s appointment or you had to go to a chiropractor or physical therapy three times a week and that happened to occur during work hours versus the situation where a doctor says, Dan, you cannot go to work with these injuries. You’ll make them worse; I’m giving you a note to take you out of work.
In that situation then you should be getting your lost wages paid and they should be getting paid by your auto insurer, by your personal injury protection insurance on your auto policy. But, in the situation where you are missing time from work, a doctor has not taken you out of work, you have no “no work slip”, and you’re missing time from work because you scheduled appointments during working hours. That is not something that your auto insurer would be voluntarily paying under your auto, under your personal injury protection auto policy.
So folks three good questions and hopefully you’ll agree, three good answers on car accident medical expenses and lost wages. If you are watching this video and you have a question it doesn’t have to be about car accidents, it can be anything. I do a general personal injury practice, if you have a question that you think would be a good question for a video topic like this, send me an email. My email address is email@example.com.
Thanks for watching!