Car Accidents- Why Do I Pay Back Kaiser For My Car Accident?
This is a frequently asked question.
The short answer: Because you agreed to do so when you signed up for Kaiser.
The long answer is below, and you will see how it is actually to your great benefit that you have to pay this back.
Imagine that you are in a car accident and need a shoulder replacement as a result, at a cost of $10,000. If you never had to pay that amount back, and your co-pay was only $50, your total damages would be $50, plus your pain and suffering.
In the real world, you have to pay that money back. So your claim is $50, plus the $10,000 surgery, plus your pain and suffering. So instead of being worth (for example) $10,050, your personal injury case is now worth $20,050.
But you still have to pay Kaiser back, right? Yes. Except that: 1)
Kaiser is limited to, at most, 1/3 of your settlement (if you have an attorney); and, 2) Kaiser may agree to reduce its bill.
In the first scenario you walk away with $10,500. In the second scenario (where you have to repay Kaiser) you walk away with approximately $13,500.
So you just "found" an extra $3,000.
Pete Clancy is an Oakland personal injury attorney. He can be reached at 510-251-8868.