The Benefits of Med Pay in Massachusetts

Brabant & Huynh, LLP

Author: Joshua Brabant

When someone gets into an auto accident, or is hit by an automobile as a pedestrian, one of the first things they will want to make sure of is that there is “Personal Injury Insurance” (aka PIP) which is $8,000 dollars of protection that will cover you no matter whose fault the accident was, which is why it is called “no-fault insurance”. This insurance is mandatory in Massachusetts if you own a vehicle. But, because $8,000 dollars is hardly enough to cover many peoples injuries, the policy holder can elect to purchase Medical Payments under that provision of their policy which will for a small fee, protect them against extra exposure as they can choose how much in Med Pay they want to buy over the $8,000 dollars.

Another benefit of Med Pay comes to us as from the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court decision of Metropolitan Property and Casualty Ins. Co. v. Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Mass., Inc. where they upheld that Medpay has to be exhausted before the health insurer is required to pay. Which is especially useful if you have private health insurance like Blue Cross, Harvard Pilgrim, Aetna, Cigna Etc. because then PIP will only pay $2,000 dollars and Med Pay will cover the rest up to its limit which means your health insurance won’t have to pay for your medical bills if they are less than your Medpay limit.

You might say, PIP, Med Pay, Health Insurance, what’s the difference if my bills get paid? Well, Med Pay in “non-subrogatable” which is a legal word that means your insurance company cannot recover that Med Pay money they used to pay your medical bills from the at fault party’s insurance company when it comes time to settle. This ultimately means you will get a bigger settlement. This is because when someone receives a settlement for injuries the offer is always minus what PIP and the health insurance paid out, but not Med Pay.

For example, if your settlement or judgment was $16,000 and your PIP paid $8,000 in medical bills, you would only net $8,000. But if you had Med Pay and health insurance, PIP would only pay out $2,000 and Med Pay would cover the rest if you bought $6,000 dollars of Med Pay. So if you received a settlement or judgment of $16,000 like the example above, but had Med Pay with health insurance, you would obtain a net of $14,000 dollars: a difference of $6,000.

This is because PIP could only recover or “subrogate” the $2,000.00 from the at fault insurance when you settle or get a judgment. Med Pay could not do this which is why you would net a larger amount from your settlement or judgment.

As we can see, these situations are not simple and the help of an attorney can greatly ease the stress of dealing with such issues and increase your chances of obtaining a higher recovery amount for your accident. If you need help with this or any other accident related issues please call your car accident attorneys Brabant & Huynh LLP at 617-934-0913 in Quincy and Dorchester and we will be glad to help you evaluate your case and ease the burden of going through the process.

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