blog home Personal Injury Can your personal injury attorney challenge and renegotiate liens?

Can your personal injury attorney challenge and renegotiate liens?

By Ken Gibson on October 10, 2023

Being injured in an accident can turn your world upside down. If you’re suffering from catastrophic injuries, your life is being disrupted in many ways. You’re likely taking time off from work to recover, and your personal life is suffering. Your injuries affect your family, and you may have to make new childcare arrangements.

Your Virginia personal injury attorney can file a claim or a lawsuit to help you get the money you need to take care of yourself and meet your financial obligations. But in the meantime, your medical bills can continue to pile up, which can be stressful.

These are all reasons it’s important to find a personal injury lawyer who responds to your calls quickly, communicates often,  and tells you how your case is progressing. A good attorney regularly takes time to talk to you.

Your attorney should inform you about the settlement offers you receive and carefully explain how they would affect your finances. Your attorney may also be able to reduce the amount you owe medical providers.

What is a medical lien?

Doctors, hospitals, and others who have provided you with medical treatment may be entitled to a portion of the money you receive from a lawsuit or settlement. Your attorney should make sure you’re aware of these financial obligations. When you collect your settlement, you shouldn’t be surprised by how much money you are receiving and what’s being paid out to others.

A lien is a legal action that a party asserts against your property. If someone who provided you with medical services places a lien against your settlement, it must be resolved before you can receive your money.

Your attorney can challenge a lien if someone tries to charge you for services they didn’t provide or if they don’t have the right to seek compensation under Virginia law. Your attorney may also be able to negotiate with the lienholder to reduce the amount of payment they are willing to accept.

Who is allowed to file a lien against your settlement?

State and federal laws determine who can file a lien against your personal injury settlement or lawsuit. Subrogation is the legal right of an insurance company to seek reimbursement from a personal injury settlement. Virginia has anti-subrogation laws that prohibit private health insurance companies from filing a lien against your settlement. However, these laws may not apply to health plans that were agreed to in other states.

Federal law allows federally-backed public and private insurance companies to file a lien against your settlement. This includes Medicaid, Medicare, Tricare, Workers’ Compensation, Children’s Health Insurance Program (SCHIP), Indian Health Services (IHS), Federal Employee Health Benefits (FEHBA), and self-funded private policies covered by the Employment Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA).

Virginia law lets people and businesses file liens to recover payment for medical treatment they provided to someone who was injured in an accident. In these cases, Virginia law caps compensation at $2,500 for hospitals and nursing homes, $750 for medical practitioners, and $200 for emergency medical services. These caps apply to hospitals, nursing homes, doctors, nurses, physical therapists, pharmacists, chiropractors, and first responders who provide medical assistance and transportation.

How can your personal injury attorney help with liens?

Your attorney can file a petition to challenge illegitimate liens, unreasonable liens, and liens that contain inaccurate information. Your attorney can also negotiate with lienholders to get them reduced. Healthcare providers are often willing to accept less than the full amount because challenging expenses takes time and money, and they may prefer to minimize their losses.

Are you looking for an outstanding personal injury lawyer who cares about you?

At GibsonSingleton Virginia Injury Attorneys my partner John Singleton and I are former U.S. Marines. We offer  “big city experience, small town care” to all our clients. We consider it a calling to help people who have been senselessly harmed in an accident.  We will walk you through every aspect of your case and keep you informed throughout.  And, you don’t pay anything unless we win your case. We call it our Zero Fee Guarantee.

Reach out to us at (804) 413-6777 or toll-free at (855) 781-6777 and schedule your free initial consultation to learn more today.

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Community service

Prevention, empathy, and diligence are hallmarks of everything we do at GibsonSingleton Virginia Injury Attorneys. Our community can see these ideals lived out in our work to prevent personal injuries from happening.

  • Safety Education
    GibsonSingleton launches a “Texts=Wrecks” campaign to reduce the number of people injured or killed by distracted drivers.
  • Annual Coat Drive
    During the fall, our team works to distribute coats to people in need in our community.
  • Hands-on Service
    John and Ken join the Gloucester Point Rotary Club in cleaning up the community.
  • Supporting Local Schools
    The Gibson family participates in Gloucester’s Botetourt Elementary Shuffle fundraiser.