Wrongful death statutes differ from state to state in regard to claiming death-related expenses. Medicare lien resolution is a complex topic in and of itself and can become even more so in wrongful death cases. Some attorneys choose to outsource and work with professionals who specialize in lien resolution services.
Medicare’s Right to Recover
If a person is awarded a settlement in a personal injury case, Medicare has the right to seek reimbursement in the event they have covered that person’s medical expenses.
When someone has survived an accident and filed a personal injury lawsuit, they are responsible for paying back Medicare with part of their settlement or judgment. As an attorney, you can be held liable in the event that your client does not pay Medicare back.
Wrongful Death Cases
For wrongful death cases, Medicare’s right to recover depends on the following:
- Whether the beneficiary’s state of residence allows for the recovery of medical expenses in a wrongful death claim
- If so, what amount Medicare is entitled to recover against
Some states allow full recovery, whereas it is limited in others. In Florida, Medicare has the right to recover their claim against the beneficiary’s estate, even if the decedent’s survivors are in no way connected to Medicare.
When someone passes away due to another person’s or institution’s negligence or fault, and the decedent was a recipient of Medicare-subsidized health care related to their cause of death, Medicare may require reimbursement from their estate.
The decedent’s child(ren), spouse, or other loved one typically files the lawsuit. Like many people, they may not be aware of the laws governing lien resolution. Often, survivors of a recent tragedy also feel they should not have to use their settlement to repay Medicare for medical expenses incurred by the decedent’s injury leading up to the wrongful death. Sometimes paying back these expenses would leave them with very little, if anything, to compensate for their loss.
As the survivor’s attorney, you are fighting to ensure they get the settlement they deserve. However, all this could be negated if the Medicare lien resolution is not handled properly.
Medicare Lien Resolution Experts
Synergy’s lien resolution group is a full-service lien resolution and compliance firm providing first-rate lien identification and negotiation services. Our expertise allows us to aggressively negotiate the resolution of healthcare liens and personal injury settlements in a way that meets the needs of all parties.
For more information or to schedule a consultation, please submit our contact request form.
Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.