Legal Question in Personal Injury in California

Auto Accident


I was recently in an auto accident where I was broadsided by an unlicensed/unisured motorist who ran a red light and was at fault.

I have unisured motorist coverage of 100/300 thousand and 5 thousand med pay.

The at fault party has no means to pay for the accident they caused. I have no health insurance.

My insurance company has stopped paying medical bills because the 5 thousand med pay has been used.

It seems to me I have enough coverage of 100/300 K for unisured motorist property damage and bodily injury. But yet the insurance company will not honor this portion of the insurance they sold me. It appears that I have been paying for many years for insurance I cannot use.

My car was a total loss and that matter is settled now.

I cannot find a health care provider who is willing to place a lien on the claim.

Now I cannot finish the course of medical treatment without paying for this out of pocket. When I bought insurance for this very reason.

Any advice on this would greatly appreciated

Asked on 6/16/06, 11:33 am

6 Answers from Attorneys


Re: Auto Accident

You may file an insurance bad-faith claim against your own insurance company. You have to make sure that you were paying for UM coverage so check your policy declaration. If you have been paying for UM and your insurance company is not honoring their agreement, contact me at 213.388.7070 for free consultation.

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Answered on 6/28/06, 4:01 pm
John Bisnar Bisnar & Chase, LLP

Re: Auto Accident

My advice is to retain a very experienced personal injury attorney who is very skilled in auto accident cases. Someone with a lot of experience (15+ years) is going to know GOOD doctors who will treat you on a lien. Someone with a lot of success will get you an appropriate recovery.

Without being represented by an attorney, realistically there can be no “lien”. The “lien” is against your future recovery, basically guaranteed by the attorney (assuming money is recovered). The lien requires the attorney to pay the medical expense from the proceeds from your settlement/judgment directly to the healthcare provider.

Beware of attorneys and doctors that have a very cosy are likely to get over treated, over charged and the medical treatment may be below standard. Such attorneys are not likely to go to bat for you to lower an unrealistically high medical bill. Be sure you are not paying more for medical services on a lien that you would if you were paying via insurance or cash. Be sure you get quality medical care....this is more important than any other factor, including how much money you recover.

Twenty years from now it will make no difference to you how much money you recovered. You will have spent it and not remember where. If you do not handle your medical recovery the best you can, you will be paying, physically, for the rest of your life. Do what is best for your body with doctors and have a great law firm handle the financial recovery. If you retain a talented, dedicated firm, you are likely to “net” more money than if you handle the matter yourself.

Good luck!

Yes, we would be interested in representing you.

John Bisnar, Bisnar & Chase

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Answered on 6/28/06, 4:09 pm
A. Russell Martin Law Office of A. Russell Martin

Re: Auto Accident


Your Uninsured Motorist ("UM") policy should be available to cover your damages. However, that type of litigation can be tricky, so it is important that you retain experienced counsel. Please call me at your earliest convenience to discuss your case further.

I work for a large firm now, but you can reach me directly at 415.899.1011 x213.

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Answered on 6/28/06, 4:30 pm
Norman Gregory Fernandez, Esq. The Law Offices of Norman Gregory Fernandez & Associates

Re: Auto Accident

You need to give me a call! I will give you a free consultation. My website is located at my contact information is on the website. Read the portion of the website that discusses why you need a lawyer!

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Answered on 6/28/06, 5:54 pm

Re: Auto Accident

You are finding out the hard way that your insurance company does not care about you at all!

I don't agree with some of the prior responses. You need an attorney who specializes in representing victims against not only the responsible parties, but also against the big bad insurance companies. Being a former insurance company attorney, I saw firsthand how they treated their insureds. You are a classic case. I now use my insider knowledge to only represent victims of accidents and have obtained many judgments and settlements against insurance companies for not only Uninsured Motorist claims, but for multiple bad faith lawsuits throughout CA. Any attorney can find doctors on a Lien. The key is medical management to make sure you get the best, most effective treatment possible. Thanks for your question and good luck.

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Answered on 6/29/06, 12:08 am
Joseph Richardson Borton Petrini LLP

Re: Auto Accident

While it's good that you have medpay, and you have plenty of UM insurance, there is no replacement for having medical insurance. Simply put, that's the problem. 5k of medpay is good for medpay, but 5 thousand dollars, as you found out, can be taken up quickly in our world of extremely expensive health care. First, I would implore you to be certain that the course of treatment you're looking for is necessary for you. If it's not, then your insurance company won't recognize it when time to settle your claim, even if you get it. Second, if it is necessary, then you have to pay for it out of pocket, which frankly will be better for you down the road, even if expensive in the short term. Perhaps you get a treatment as you can, every now and then. IT's not an easy situation, but if you depend on having medical care done on a lien and then your insurance company low balls you on your settlement, you might find yourself with little to no money going in your pocket in a settlement when you figure your lien costs. So, if it's really necessary care, borrow the money from someone you trust or pay for it yourself (preferably the latter). You will take a lot of pressure off of yourself as to your settlement. And finally, please get medical insurance now.

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Answered on 6/29/06, 11:22 am

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