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Kansas City Accident Injury Attorneys

How do “liens” affect the amount of my Missouri workers’ compensation settlement?

Sometimes a work-related injury will result in a worker’s compensation case that also involves a personal injury suit. When this happens, a victim should consider carefully whether to pursue an injury case, as many different entities may lay claim to the settlement that is won in court.

Workers’ compensation is a form of insurance, and insurance companies can request to be reimbursed for the amount they have paid out of the proceeds of a personal injury case. A request for reimbursement, called a lien, can drastically affect how much you end up with at the end of your case.

Here are a few entities that may claim a portion of your settlement:

  • Missouri workers' compensation. Missouri state law allows workers' compensation the right of "subrogation," meaning that if workers' compensation paid for your hospitalization, medical bills, or lost wages, Missouri workers’ compensation can place a lien on your personal injury settlement to ask for its money back.
  • Your health insurance provider. Some health insurance companies may place a lien on your winnings; however, only self-funded plans governed by federal law have a right to claim reimbursement in Missouri. An attorney can help you determine whether a health plan is eligible to claim reimbursement.
  • Medicare or Medicaid. The law grants governmental agencies such as Medicare and Medicaid to be reimbursed for some of the costs they have paid toward your injury bills. However, there are rules dictating how much can be recovered—and in many cases, these amounts can be reduced if your attorney specifically requests limited repayment.

We can help you determine the best way forward to get maximum compensation for your suffering. Call us at (888) 348-2616 to speak to a work injury attorney, or learn more in our free informational guide, How to Avoid Becoming a Work Injury Horror Story.

James Roswold
James Roswold is a Kansas & Missouri personal injury, workers comp, and medical malpractice attorney.

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