A few Illinois auto accident attorneys are reporting that clients of theirs have been given materials from hospital employees about a company called Claim Assist after they have gotten care for injuries in car accidents. Hospital employees have left the clients with the strong impression that involving Claim Assist in their car accident case would be strongly beneficial to them, even when they have health insurance to cover their bills. There is nothing that could be farther from the truth.Here are what one lawyer in the Chicago area had to say:
I just got off the phone with a client to discuss ClaimsAssist. She says when she was at the hospital she was told by the hospital personnel that ClaimsAssist could assist her in getting insurance to pay her bills. She had med pay and health insurance. She says it was made very clear that they were there to help her.
She did not use them, but now they have placed a lien on her PI-auto case on behalf of the hospital, after the hospital accepted money from auto and health insurance and took a health insurance adjustment. ClaimsAssist ?claims? that the hospital can accept the health insurance money, make an adjustment, and then later, if we obtain money on the PI case, pay back health insurance, undo the adjustment, and claim full payment on its lien.
This is what a lawyer in far southern Illinois had to say:A new client of mine was given a pamphlet at the hospital with very aggressive urging to register immediately with “Claim Assist”. I have never heard of them before, but I looked it up and they appear to be an outsourced bill collection system to maximize recovery for the health care provider. One thing that I have seen more of in the last few years in handling car accident cases is that hospitals are refusing to bill a patient’s health insurance for a car accident and instead waiting to be paid the full amount of their bill out of the settlement of the case. It is great business for the health care provider, but not so good for the injury victim.In short, they are saying “We’ll Bill The Accident,” and these are four words you never want to hear your health care provider — whether a hospital, doctor, or therapist — say when it comes to payment of medical expenses after a car accident. Letting that happen can cost you thousands of dollars.See our article for how to pay medical bills from an accident for information about how to protect your interests, not the hospitals.As an experienced Chicago personal injury lawyer, I would say to stay away from these people and not get near them with a 10 foot pole.