Drivers and passengers commonly suffer from neck and lower back pain after a car accident. One of the best treatment options for that pain is visiting a chiropractor. However, many victims hesitate from chiropractic treatment because of fears about whether auto insurance will cover it. The good news is, in most cases, it will.
Auto insurance will typically cover chiropractor visits as long as they are “reasonably necessary.” The key here is that you and your attorney must demonstrate that your chiropractic care was medically reasonable and necessary. For instance, bruises and lacerations do not require treatment by a chiropractor, whereas a soft tissue injury like whiplash would.
The unfortunate news is it is you are generally responsible for the upfront costs. After you complete all of your chiropractic treatment, you will submit these bills to the auto insurance company for review and request reimbursement. Keep in mind that they will not pay your bills one by one as you make your way through treatment. If your injuries are severe enough, you may need more than one visit per week for several months.
If you’re at fault for the accident, you will need personal injury protection coverage, or “PIP,” on your auto policy to have your insurer help pay for treatment. If another driver was at fault, the visits will need to be billed to their auto insurance company. Even if they only have liability insurance, medical expenses, including chiropractor visits, should be eligible for coverage.
If liability is disputed, there may be a few options to help cover your chiropractor visits:
Your auto insurance provider may pay for some of the chiropractor bills, but you will need to check your policy to see if you have Medical Payments Coverage (MedPay). MedPay is not typically included when purchasing auto insurance, and you will have had to ask for this type of coverage. MedPay will cover medical bills up to the amount of coverage you purchased. For example, if you pay for $10,000 in MedPay coverage, your auto insurer will cover up to $10,000 of your medical or chiropractor bills.
If you file a personal injury lawsuit, many chiropractors will provide treatment on a medical lien. This means they will wait for payment until your case is settled or you receive a favorable verdict. Once your claim is resolved, you will have to repay the lien from your awarded compensation.
Personal health insurance coverage can be used on its own or to cover the remaining expenses after your MedPay coverage has reached its limit. However, you will still have to pay out of pocket for deductibles or any copays. Oftentimes, having all of your chiropractor bills go through your health insurance provider can save you a lot of money in the long run. Your health insurer is entitled to recoup the payments made on your behalf from your settlement or judgment, but your attorney can negotiate down the amount that will come out of your award.
If you have been injured in a car accident and need to visit the chiropractor, contact Goldblatt + Singer. Our St. Louis Car Accident Lawyer can help you get the compensation you need to cover those bills. Call (314) 888-1000 to schedule your free consultation today.