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Who should pay for my family’s medical bills in a car accident?

On Behalf of | Mar 5, 2024 | Car accidents

Car accidents can feel overwhelming, especially when another driver’s negligence harms not just you but your entire family. It’s very likely that you will need extensive and potentially costly medical treatment for injuries from the accident.

As the medical bills start to pile up, anxiety can quickly set in. But it’s important to remember you’re not alone—the law is here to help.

At-fault driver’s insurer

In Texas, the law typically holds the person who caused the accident, the at-fault driver, responsible for the damages that result. This means that the financial burden of your hospital expenses doesn’t rest on your shoulders. Instead, the at-fault driver’s insurance company is typically expected to take care of your family’s medical bills.

Additionally, you may have Personal Injury Protection (PIP) or Medical Payments coverage (MedPay) as part of your auto insurance, which could help pay for your or your passengers’ medical treatments regardless of who caused the accident. However, these coverages are optional in Texas, and you may not have chosen to opt for them. So, you may still need to rely on the at-fault driver’s insurer for coverage of injuries, especially for more serious accidents.

Regardless of whether the accident involved a single person or your entire family, the same principle applies: the other driver’s insurance is there to help manage medical expenses. However, it’s important to note that there is a limit to this assistance as per their policy.

Challenges you may encounter

One potential hurdle you might face is when your hospital bills exceed the limit of the at-fault driver’s insurance policy. In such cases, the insurance company doesn’t have an obligation to pay the excess, leaving you with the remaining amount. Beyond policy limits, the process of claiming compensation can present further challenges. There might be cases where insurers dispute the claim or offer a settlement that doesn’t fully cover your medical costs. These companies are businesses, after all. In some cases, they may aim to minimize the amount they pay out, which can put you and your family in a more difficult spot.

If you face these challenges, it could be beneficial to consult an attorney. They can guide you through the process, ensuring you fully know your rights and options.