When an individual is injured in an automobile accident, the medical bills that result from the ensuing medical treatment are often paid by a variety of sources. Before settling the injury claim, consideration must first be given to the existence of any Medicare liens.
Medicare is the federal health insurance program for people who are 65 or older, certain younger people with disabilities, and people with End-Stage Renal Disease (permanent kidney failure requiring dialysis or a transplant, sometimes called ESRD).
When an individual is injured in an accident, his or her medical bills may be paid by Medicare while liability is being determined. Under the law, the United States Government has a lien for payment made under the Medicare Secondary Payer Act (“MSP”). This law states that Medicare may not make payments when payment has been made or can reasonably be expected to be made promptly under worker’s compensation or automobile or liability insurance policies or plans or no-fault insurance. Any payment is conditioned upon reimbursement from the primary plan.
When determining the proper amount to be repaid, one must consider the following: 1) what amount is required to be repaid by the Medicare laws; 2) is there any part of the claim that qualifies for waiver under the Medicare law; and 3) is a compromise appropriate under the Medicare law.
For more information regarding personal injury law, please contact an experienced attorney at the law firm of Paulson & Paulson, PLC.