Will My Insurance Cover Physical Therapy After a Car Accident in Albuquerque?
October 19, 2023 | Car Accidents
The aftermath of an injury-causing car accident is usually a bewildering and distressing experience. Although auto accident insurance typically does cover physical therapy expenses, it does not do so in every instance. A lot depends on the facts of your case. A lot more depends on the quality of your lawyer.
Who Pays for Physical Therapy After a Car Accident?
Does my insurance cover physical therapy? It probably will cover at least some of your physical therapy expenses. If it does, there are five likely sources:
- Your health insurance provider;
- New Mexico MedPay, if you carry it (it’s optional); and
- The at-fault driver’s auto accident liability insurance, if the accident was their fault;
- Your uninsured/underinsured motorist policy; and
- Commercial trucking insurance, if the at-fault party was a commercial truck driver.
You don’t have to “pick one”–with certain limitations, you can draw upon the resources of more than one insurance policy at the same time.
Your Health Insurance Provider
Your health insurance provider will probably cover at least some of your physical therapy expenses, even if the accident was your fault. Check the exact wording of your policy, however, for loopholes in coverage. Your lawyer can help you with this.
MedPay is optional in New Mexico, but it typically costs less than $10 a month-–less than a subscription to Spotify. MedPay will cover your own medical expenses even if you were at fault. It will also cover injuries to your passengers. It will even pay for pedestrian accidents. You can also use MedPay to pay the deductibles and copays imposed by your health insurance policy.
However, the coverage limits for MedPay range from $5,000 to $10,000—not enough to fully cover many people’s physical therapy needs.
The At-Fault Driver’s Auto Accident Liability Insurance Policy
If the accident was not your fault, and if the other driver was insured, you can file a third-party claim against the at-fault driver’s auto accident liability insurance. New Mexico requires every driver to carry insurance with at least the following maximum coverage:
- $25,000 in bodily injury liability per person;
- $50,000 in bodily injury liability per accident; and
- $10,000 in property damage liability per accident
As a third-party claimant, you can become a third-party beneficiary of the insurance contract between the insurance company (the first party) and the at-fault driver (the second party).
Your Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Insurance
Uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage is mandatory for all New Mexico drivers. Its coverage tops out at “25/50/10”–the same limits as your liability insurance policy. You can use it in a hit-and-run accident, when the at-fault driver carries no insurance, or when the at-fault driver’s insurance is insufficient to cover your claim.
Commercial Trucking Insurance
If the at-fault party was driving a commercial truck at the time of the accident, you have access to insurance resources that are far more extensive than those available to ordinary motorists.
The “Reasonable and Necessary” Restriction
All of your medical expenses must be “reasonable and necessary.” You can be certain that if there is any question about whether your physical therapy needs are reasonable and necessary, the opposing party will resist your claim.
It might turn out to be easier to justify surgery, for example, than to justify physical therapy. Collect and retain all the evidence you can.
Estimating Your Long-Term Financial Needs
If your physical therapy needs have not been fully met by the time you file your claim, you are going to have to include an estimate of your future physical therapy expenses. This is inherently speculative, and it is risky. If you ask for too little money and run out years from now, you won’t be able to come back and ask for more. That is why you absolutely must get it right the first time.
Getting it right the first time almost certainly means you are going to need an expert witness to calculate your estimated future physical therapy expenses. You can use this expert witness in settlement negotiations, at trial, or both.
No Money for a Lawyer? No Problem
Albuquerque injury lawyers do not charge by the billable hour. Instead, they work on a contingency fee system, where their legal fees amount to a certain percentage of the total amount they win for you. If they win nothing for you in terms of compensation, then you owe them nothing in attorney’s fees.
Contact the New Mexico Car Accident Lawyers at Curiel & Runion Personal Injury Lawyers Today
If you were injured in an accident in Albuquerque, NM, and need legal help, contact our Albuquerque car accident attorneys at Curiel & Runion Personal Injury Lawyers to schedule a free case review today.
Curiel & Runion Personal Injury Lawyers
400 Gold Avenue SW, Suite 650
Albuquerque, NM 87102