Statutory Liens - Medicare, Medicaid and Indiana Worker's Coverage
Subrogation Claims - Health Plans and Automobile Medical Payments Coverage
A lien is defined as a statutory right to enforce a charge upon property of another for payment or satisfaction of debt or claim. A subrogation claim is defined as the lawful substitution of a third party in place of a party having a claim against another party.
An injured party is involved in an automobile accident caused by the fault of another. His health plan or automobile insurance carrier pays his medical bills for accident related treatment. Since he has a right to recover damages from the party at fault, his health plan or automobile insurance carrier stands in his shoes and has a right to recover amounts paid by the insurance carrier for the party at fault. If Medicare or Medicaid paid the medical bills, either would have a statutory lien against any third party recovery. The amount subject to reimbursement is reduced by a pro rata share of attorney fees & legal epenses incurred in prosecution of the claim. Further, under Indiana law, if the total amount of damages recovered is reduced by limited liability insurance coverage or comparative fault on the part of the accident victim, the lien or subrogation claim is reduced by a pro rata amount.