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What is Medical Payments Coverage, and Why Do I Need it on my Missouri Automobile Insurance Policy?

One of the first questions I ask new automobile accident clients is this: "Do you have med pay?"  They often times look at me with a funny expression and say, "What's that?"  Med Pay is a form of no-fault insurance coverage that you can optionally purchase as part of your car insurance policy.  It will pay up to a certain amount of money towards your medical bills, regardless of who is at fault in the accident.  But do you need medical payments coverage, or "med pay?"

If you are injured in an accident and you are not at fault, the other person's automobile liability insurance almost never pays your medical bills as they are incurred.  Rather, if the other person's insurance accepts liability, you will be reimbursed for your medical expenses as part of a settlement or, if the case does not settle, as part of a jury award.  And very few doctors and hospitals want to wait months, or even years, for your case to settle and to get their bills paid.  Med pay can help you pay your bills as soon as they are incurred.  And you do not have to reimburse your medical payments carrier in Missouri when the case settles.  Most med pay covers anywhere from $1000 to $10,000 of medical bills incurred as a result of the accident, and that limit applies to not only your injury claim, but to the injuries of anyone who is riding in your vehicle and is injured.

You may say to yourself, "But I have health insurance.  Can't I just put my bills through to my health insurance carrier?"  Yes, you can submit your bills to your health insurance, but you can use the med pay coverage to help you pay your copays.  I even recommend to clients that they exhaust all of their med pay coverage before submitting their remaining bills to their health insurance company.  That is because most health insurance carriers, if provided through your employer, have some sort of right to be reimbursed out of your settlement for the amounts they paid on your behalf. In other words, when you get your settlement, you may have to pay your health insurance carrier back for what they paid. Again, med pay has no right to get repaid in Missouri, so the less you have to pay back to your health insurance company, the more of the settlement you get to keep.  So use your med pay first, then submit your remaining bills to health insurance.

The same goes for you if you are on Medicare or Medicaid. These governmental coverages also have a right to be repaid out of your settlement, so the less bills you submit to Medicare or Medicaid, the more of your settlement you get to keep as well! Call a Missouri Automobile Accident attorney if you have any further questions.  Feel free to call us at 314-315-8111. 

Med pay coverage is usually quite inexpensive.  I personally think it is a very valuable and useful coverage to purchase--regardless of whether you have health insurance.  So ask your insurance agent about adding med pay to your coverage.  It can really come in handy.

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