Get Your Questions Answered Today By Iowa Injury Attorney Nicholas Pothitakis
After an injury or accident, you probably have a number of general questions about who was at fault, whether you are owed compensation, and whether you need an attorney to assist you with your claim. Below, we've answered some of the most common questions that we hear at our law firm.
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Should I give the other driver's insurance adjuster a patient's waiver so they can obtain our medical records?
No. Providing an open medical release to the insurance company merely results in significant breaches of privacy as well as problems with your claim in the future. It's always important to remember that one of the goals of the insurance company for the other driver is to minimize the value of your claim. They are not trying to help you; they are not trying to help increase the value of your claim; they are not trying to obtain support for the high value of your claim. The Pothitakis Law Firm rarely provides medical releases to insurance companies in pending automobile accident claims. We obtain the medical records ourselves and review them prior to providing them to the insurance company.
If my health insurance company pays my medical expenses as a result of the other driver's negligence in causing the accident, do I have to pay my health insurance back?
Most health insurance carriers have what is called a right of subrogation. They are entitled to be reimbursed for medical expenses they paid that are the fault of another individual. A significant portion of the representation we provide individuals at Pothitakis Law Firm involves negotiating with health insurance carriers about their subrogation claim. Our goal is to reduce the amount that the health insurance carrier is entitled to receive as every dollar that we are able to save with respect to paying back health insurance carriers goes in to the client's pocket. These issues can be very complex and health insurance policies have different contractual obligations as to how much they are entitled to receive back and whether it can be reduced. An experienced automobile accident attorney can help reduce the claim of health insurance carriers which ultimately puts more money into your pocket.
If I am in a car accident with someone who does not have insurance, who pays for the damages that I sustain?
In Iowa, if you are injured as a result of the negligence of another driver who does not have insurance and who was operating a vehicle that was not insured by someone else, you still may be able to recover damages under your own automobile insurance.
In Iowa, you can purchase uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage. Uninsured motorist coverage will provide payment for damages that were sustained as a result of the wrongful acts of an uninsured driver. Underinsured motorist coverage provides payment for damages sustained as a result of the wrongful acts of a driver who does not have enough insurance to cover your damages.
Uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage is available from your automobile insurance agent. I have found it to be a very important coverage to have. I have seen that over the years, it has become more frequent that individuals have sustained injuries as a result of the negligent acts of drivers who either don't have any insurance whatsoever or who have very low limits. In these situations, it is very important to have this additional coverage so that medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering damages can be recovered fully by pursuing an uninsured or underinsured motorist claim.
It is important to review these matters with your automobile insurance agent as well as an attorney to make sure that you have sufficient coverage in case your are involved in an automobile accident.