411-PAIN is a number that lets you reach a so-called car accident lawyer referral service that promises to help you obtain up to $10,000 for your injuries from your personal injury protection (PIP) insurance provider. After a crash, you call the number and they suggest you go to a particular chiropractic clinic for a diagnosis and treatment. You then meet with an attorney – often at the chiropractic clinic – referred by the service. After undergoing treatment, you are waiting for the money that you were promised. You call your insurance company and learn that your policy has been drained and there is nothing left to payout to you for this accident. How can that be?
How PIP Insurance Works
To understand how your PIP policy can be drained, you should first be familiar with how PIP insurance works. In general, you will receive bills for costs of any medical treatment that you received for the injuries you suffered in the accident. Once you know how much your treatment costs, you can submit a claim with the supporting bills to your PIP insurance company. Your insurer should then either pay the bills directly if they have not yet been paid or provide you with the money if you went ahead and covered the bills yourself.
The minimum PIP coverage you must have as a driver in Florida is $10,000,1 though some people have PIP policies that are greater. You can receive compensation for your medical expenses and lost wages up to the limit of your policy.
How Referral Services like 411-PAIN Work
When you visit a chiropractic clinic recommended by a referral service like 411-PAIN, the chiropractor and the referred attorney will be working together. The clinic will recommend and provide treatment, likely telling you not to worry about the costs right now, as it will all be taken care of later. You do not receive bills, which means that you do not know how much your treatment is actually costing and you do not check to make sure that all treatments billed were administered and accurate.
You will not receive a bill from the clinic because the clinic works with your attorney to bill your PIP insurance company directly. Your insurance company will pay the clinic directly and you may not even be aware that it is happening. Suddenly, before you know it, the chiropractor has billed for the maximum amount of your insurance policy and so there is nothing left over for you. Unfortunately, this happens all too often in the state of Florida when people call 411-PAIN and similar services.
Unethical Acts by Attorneys
When you put your finances and legal rights in the hands of an attorney after a car accident, you should be able to trust that your attorney will not take advantage of your situation by putting their own financial needs ahead of yours. Acting in a manner that is misleading, deceptive, and/or self-dealing is unethical and strictly goes against the Rules of Professional Conduct for the practice of law in Florida.
At Sibley Dolman Gipe Accident Injury Lawyers, PA, not only do we strongly believe in your right to financial recovery after a car accident, we always believe that you deserve remedies for wrongdoing by another attorney. We can handle both car accident and legal malpractice cases in case your situation may require both.
Call a Trusted Auto Accident Injury Attorney in Clearwater, Florida for Help Today
It can be tempting to call 411-PAIN after a car crash because the commercials make it sound like a simple process and a surefire way to receive $10,000. Unfortunately, this is often too good to be true and you can find yourself with no compensation and no additional insurance coverage to seek. Instead of calling 411-PAIN, please call the highly experienced and dedicated car accident lawyers at the Sibley Dolman Gipe Accident Injury Lawyers, PA. We always put the needs of our clients first and closely abide by our ethical duties. Call for a free consultation at 727-451-6900.