Hiring an attorney....if you are in accident, you might want to act fast

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The insurance industry has figured out another scheme to try to save a dollar, even at their own policy holders' detriment. Hospital liens are filed after accidents by medical providers that treat folks involved in accidents within 72 hours of the accident. These liens are routinely filed and routinely paid by the claimant's lawyers out of any settle or judgment proceeds arising out of the claim. Many hospital liens would never be paid without the efforts and expense of the Plaintiff's (claimant's) attorney pursuing the case and obtaining a recovery.

Millions of dollars have been paid to Texas hospitals as a direct result of the injured person's attorney obtaining a recovery for their client in an accident case. Some cases have extremely difficult liability facts, and without the case being developed, pursued, and many times litigated, the medical provider would not get paid for the services they provided to the accident victim.

Insurance carriers have very recently developed a new scheme to go around the claimant (injured person) and the claimant's attorney by hiring third party businesses to pay the hospital liens. Lawsuits against the insurance carriers, the medical providers (hospitals) and the third party business have been filed and are pending in Harris County, Texas. One such pending lawsuit, filed in Harris County, Cause number 2016-37857 , was filed against Memorial Hermann Health System d/b/a Memorial Hermann Hospital, Geico Advantage Insurance Company and Kent McRee. The petition alleges that Kent McRee operates a business called ClaimTECH Solutions. The petition alleges that Geico directed McRee to contact the hospital regarding the medical billing. The petition alleges negligence against the hospital, invasion of privacy against Geico and McRee, tortuous interference against the hospital, Geico and McRee, conversion against Memorial Hermann and Geico and conspiracy against Memorial Hermann, Geico and McRee. The petition seeks exemplary damages for intentional or grossly negligent acts.

I have had GEICO insurance employ this scheme on two of my recent cases, once to GEICO's own insured!!!

This scheme has very significant legal implications and consequences, and can severely limit the damages the injured person may recover in settlement or at trial. The cases pending against the insurance industry may put an end to this practice, but for now it is a significant issue.

Our office is prepared to take action to defeat this scheme. Give us a call if you have any questions about your injury claim.