New Bill Helps Protect Consumers from Health Insurance Companies | Law Firm Newswire

New Bill Helps Protect Consumers from Health Insurance Companies

Waxahachie, TX (Law Firm Newswire) August 1, 2013 - A Texas House Bill was signed this past May which restricts "subrogation," the substitution of one person or group by another for insurance rights.

Texas House Bill 1869, passed unanimously in both the House and Senate, is designed to provide a legal framework which allows the settling of personal injury cases while helping an injured person meet their other expenses and providing certainty to health insurers. The law takes effect in January 2014.

Subrogation by an insurance company occurs when the company that collected premiums from an individual is determined to be reimbursed by their insured for that loss although they have agreed to that loss.

"The subrogated company assumes the legal rights of the insured in order to collect from their own insured after a settlement or from the person who caused the loss," explained John Hale, a Waxahachie personal injury lawyer. "When a health insurance carrier takes on the legal rights of a claimant in order to take the recovery for itself, problems can arise. The responsible party who caused the harm often is not in possession of enough assets or insurance to pay the entirety of the injured party’s losses."

What does Bill 1869 mean for consumers? Some health insurance carriers have made it a priority to collect subrogation from injured policy holders. The Supreme Court of Texas decided in Fortis v. Cantu, 234 S.W.3d 642 (Tex.2007) that insurance companies are allowed to require policy holders to pay out "first money" to the subrogated health insurance company, even if the actual injured party might be left with nothing.

In its ruling, the Supreme Court stated that a health insurer's contractual subrogation rights overruled the made-whole doctrine. With Bill 1869, there is a formula put into place to allow for a balanced division of the recovery when there are not enough funds, so that both the injured party and the health insurer are compensated.

John Hale is a Waxahachie personal injury lawyer and Ellis County personal injury lawyer helping injury victims near Dallas, Texas. Learn more at The Hale Law Firm

The Hale Law Firm
100 Executive Court, Suite 3
Waxahachie, TX 75165
Call: 888.425.3911

View Larger Map

  • Texan Government and Legal Professionals Offer Tips for Safe and Happy Driving This Holiday Season
    Year after year, Texas leads the nation in traffic fatalities due to drunk driving. Add to that the still-growing spike in fatal crashes due to the energy boom, and Texans have good reason to think carefully about staying safe on the road this holiday season. Auto accidents can be financially, emotionally and physically devastating, especially during the holidays. Fortunately, it is easy to reduce the risk of being involved in a crash. Stay off the road after 1:00 a.m. Most drunk driving accidents occur between 1:00 a.m. and 3:00 a.m. Even if most people drive sober, inevitably, some will not. […]
  • Stunning Breakthrough Offers Hope for Paralyzed Spinal Cord Injury Patients
    An electrical stimulation implant has helped four paralyzed men regain the ability to move their legs.  The device, called an epidural spine stimulator, was implanted in the men as part of a study undertaken by the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) and the University of Louisville. One of the patients in the study, Kent Stephenson, is from Mount Pleasant, Texas. At 21, he was involved in a motocross accident that left him without sensation or motor control from the chest down. Today, he can move his legs, stand on his own and distinguish between types of touch. In addition, […]
  • Expert Links Football Players’ Concussions to Behavioral Problems, Slams NFL Settlement Deal
    A brain injury expert from Boston University is speaking out for players he feels have been unfairly excluded from a settlement deal in the class action lawsuit against the NFL over the health effects of play-related brain injury. Robert Stern filed an affidavit with the court and then took his story to the press, telling The Associated Press (AP) that the compensation in the settlement may be going to the wrong people. Stern told AP reporters that behavioral problems, including domestic violence, drug addiction and suicide, can all be caused by chronic traumatic encephalopathy — also known as CTE — […]

Tags: , , , , ,

Get headlines from Law Firm Newswire sent right to your inbox.

* indicates required