13 Jun Whatever Happened to Compassion and Mercy?
Some days its frustrating. This morning was one of those days. We work hard for our clients and sometimes there’s not much we can do.
Our client got hurt in a wreck, but for reasons which I can’t go into here, we had to accept a greatly reduced rate in settlement. The only reason she got any sort of settlement was because of our work on her case — and, from an attorney’s perspective, we did a great job for her.
We paid off all the medical providers and then the health insurance company came knocking. Sometimes the law forces the health insurance companies to reduce or take nothing for their liens. Sometimes it doesn’t. This was one of those cases: the law did not force the health insurance company to reduce its lien.
“Look,” I said to the health insurance company. “Consider where our client is coming from. Because of this wreck she can’t work anymore, and the only reason she got any settlement was because we represented her. Please consider reducing your lien amount by the percentage she had to pay in attorneys fees and costs to get any money at all from this insurance company.”
The health insurance rep says, “well, she got some money in her pocket.”
“Yes. But she can’t work at all for the rest of her life. That money’s probably not even a year’s wages — how much do you make a year?”
“The law and health insurance policy say we don’t have to reduce the lien at all.”
“I know, but you can. Please consider our client who can’t work at all. Please consider that we worked hard to get her a very good settlement. Please consider that, if not for her attorneys there wouldn’t be enough money to go around. We’re throwing ourselves on your mercy.”
It was all we could do, and there was no mercy or compassion. So, forgive me for taking this moral high-ground, but. Shame on him. Shame on them. Shame on the law.
And, thank you to my client who was so gracious to understand that we did everything we could and again thanked us for our hard work on her case.