NICA To Pay $51 Million To Resolve Claims Related To Medicaid Fraud
Birth injury lawsuits are extremely difficult for parents, but also health care providers. When an infant is injured, the child requires a lifetime of medical services and may never be able to talk, walk, or feed themselves. They will likely require expensive 24-care for the rest of their lives. While medical malpractice lawsuits pick up the bill in some cases, they are hard to file, hard to find an attorney willing to file, and hard to win. They also cost more money to litigate driving up the stakes for attorneys.
While you hear a lot about medical malpractice lawsuits in the news, 90% of the lawsuits that are brought to the attention of a medical malpractice lawyer are rejected. The lawyer tends to be skittish about claims that they cannot prove. If the patient cannot file a medical malpractice lawsuit because they cannot find an attorney willing to file, they may opt to file a claim on NICA, a birth injury system created by Florida to help the parents of infants injured during the birth process.
A lot has been written about NICA’s battle with Medicaid. NICA was recently sued by Medicaid for deferring payments that it should have absorbed to Medicaid. Medicaid argued that it was the payer of last resort while NICA argued the same. Eventually, a federal judge decided the case in favor of Medicaid which essentially decided that NICA stole millions of dollars from Florida’s Medicaid program. NICA will now be required to pay back $51 million. This should not be difficult since the program has been accruing money since its inception and the parents of injured children have struggled to get financing.
Below, we’ll discuss the difference between NICA and a medical malpractice lawsuit and why you should pursue a medical malpractice lawsuit even if you’re turned down by one or more attorneys.
NICA versus medical malpractice
Those who have strong cases will always opt to file a medical malpractice lawsuit. NICA is a no-fault system and like most no-fault systems, it does not allow a plaintiff to recover damages related to future lost income, pain and suffering, and other compensation. Instead, you can only get compensation for medical support and even then, it can be very difficult to get NICA to authorize your claim. In most cases, families opted for going through Medicaid or their private insurer rather than fight Medicaid’s battle. Nonetheless, if you file a claim with NICA, you will receive less compensation, if any.
A medical malpractice lawsuit is filed against a doctor or hospital and their medical malpractice insurer defends the claim on their behalf. You can recover pain and suffering damages in addition to lost future wages. Hence, filing a medical malpractice lawsuit is preferable to filing a NICA claim if that option is available to you.
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Payer Law helps injured parties and their families recover damages related to their injuries. Call our Miami personal injury lawyers today to schedule a free consultation and learn more about how we can help.