Who Can Seek A Lien Against Your Personal Injury Settlement?

Once your personal injury attorney has negotiated a settlement for your case, you have another potential problem you could face. If you have any outstanding debts, there is a possibility that a lien could be placed on your settlement. If there is one, you and your attorney will have to settle it before you can receive your compensation.

What Is a Lien?

A lien that is placed against your settlement is done so to ensure that a debt is paid. The person or company that is requesting the lien has to file it with the court. Depending on the amount of the lien, it can impact a small or large share of your settlement. You will be notified in writing of the lien and how much it is for. 

Who Can File a Lien?

In personal injury cases, the lien is often filed by medical care providers that provided you treatment for your injuries. For instance, your doctor can file a lien for his or her bills that were not covered by insurance to attempt to recover the remaining balance of your medical bills. 

There is a possibility that you agreed to the lien before you received treatment. Some providers require patients and their attorneys to sign a consensual lien. In essence, you would agree to have your medical bills paid directly from the settlement. When you receive your payment from the insurance company, your attorney would ensure that the provider receives payment.

Your insurance provider could also file a lien. If your insurance paid for any of your treatment that was related to the accident, it can ask for payment. The same holds true if you receive Medicaid or Medicare. 

What Can You Do?

In most instances, your only option is to pay the amount that you owe. You might be able to negotiate a lower amount with your insurance provider or the medical care provider. Your attorney can contact each person or company with a lien and attempt a negotiation. None of them are obligated to negotiate, so it is possible you could end up paying the entire amount requested. 

If you have Medicaid or Medicare, you might not be able to negotiate the amount that is owed. If you fail to pay back the federal government, you could face legal consequences. 

Before settling your case, ask your attorney about how a lien could impact your case. He or she can help you determine whether or not one has been placed against your settlement and help you explore your options.

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What Should You Do If You Get Into an Accident?

If you're in an auto accident and sustain serious injuries, who do you call for help? How do you pay for your medical bills and personal expenses while you recover? If you can't find the answers to these questions, then you need a personal injury attorney. A personal injury attorney works hard to get you the money you need after a life-changing accident. He or she investigates your accident from start to finish. Getting your life back on track after a devastating car accident isn't easy. But with an attorney representing your case, it's possible. If you need additional guidance on how to find a personal injury lawyer or if you have questions about your compensation, read my blog. It gives you the answers and solutions you need now.

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