By: Matthew Tievsky
The short answer is: nothing. The value of your claim doesn't go down
at all when you use your health insurance.
Maryland follows the "collateral source rule." This means that
if you suffer losses in an automobile collision caused by a defendant,
but you are partially compensated by a third party – such as your
health insurer – the defendant is not let off the hook at all. If
you incurred $10,000 in medical bills and your health insurer pays $7,000
of the bills, the defendant still owes you… $10,000 for the bills.
(And perhaps more to compensate other losses, such as pain and suffering.)
So if you have health insurance, there's no reason to hold back in
using it after you are harmed in an automobile collision. You should use
every means at your disposal to get your medical bills, and other costs, paid off.
The only catch is that your insurance may require you to repay your health
insurer to some extent, when you make a recovery against the defendant.
But even then, your insurer is likely to accept less than a full repayment,
meaning that you actually make more money in total by using your health
insurance and pursuing an auto accident claim.
If you have any questions about how using your health insurance affects
your auto accident claim, you should contact the Maryland personal injury
attorneys at Chaikin, Sherman, Cammarata & Siegel, P.C.