What Is a Subrogation Lien Claim?

Posted on July 28, 2023 by Shapiro Law Group

documents about Subrogation with notepad and glassesHave you been a victim of medical malpractice? It’s a disheartening and often confusing situation, one that no one should ever have to face. However, amidst the turmoil, the Shapiro Law Group is here to illuminate the complexities for you.

In Florida, where the laws surrounding medical malpractice are notoriously dense, one term that you will likely encounter is a “subrogation lien.” This legal concept could have significant implications for your settlement.

But what exactly is a subrogation lien claim? How does it work, and how could it potentially affect your case?

Let’s delve into these questions.

Subrogation Lien Claim in Florida

A subrogation lien claim arises when a third-party (usually your health insurance company) seeks reimbursement for expenses paid on your behalf after you’ve received compensation from a medical malpractice lawsuit.

Think about it this way — your insurer footed the bill for your initial medical treatment following malpractice. However, if you later receive a settlement or verdict from a lawsuit against the negligent medical professional, the insurance company has a right to recover those funds. This right is where the subrogation lien comes into play.

Benefits of a Subrogation Lien

You might wonder, “How could a subrogation lien possibly benefit me?” The truth is, your insurer’s right to subrogation can be beneficial in a medical malpractice case. Because of this lien, insurers are more likely to pay for your immediate healthcare needs, knowing they may recoup these costs if you win a malpractice lawsuit later on.

How Do Subrogation Liens Work in Florida?

In the state of Florida, subrogation liens follow a well-established legal framework. A key principle that governs this area of law in Florida is the “Made Whole Doctrine.” This doctrine is built on the premise that an injured party must first be made whole, i.e., fully compensated for their injuries, before an insurance company can claim a portion of the settlement through subrogation.

Once a victim receives a settlement or award in a medical malpractice case, the insurance company has a legal right to assert a subrogation lien on those funds. This lien is essentially the insurer’s legal claim to recover costs they initially covered, such as medical bills or other related expenses.

However, there are important limitations. According to Florida statutes, there are specific steps an insurer must follow to assert a subrogation lien.

Firstly, they must give proper notice of their intent to pursue subrogation. They can’t simply surprise the injured party with a claim after the settlement. Secondly, the insurance company can only recover the actual cost of services and benefits provided.

It is also worth noting that Florida law provides room for negotiation over the amount of the subrogation lien. An experienced Florida medical malpractice attorney can often help negotiate these liens down or even have them waived entirely, depending on the circumstances. The process is quite complex, and it involves understanding the extent of the injury, the cost of future care, and the degree to which the injured party was made whole by their settlement or award.

Negotiating a Subrogation Lien

While the benefits are clear, there are also potential pitfalls. An improperly managed subrogation lien might reduce your settlement funds considerably. Hence, knowing how to negotiate a subrogation claim is crucial.

Negotiating a subrogation lien claim can be a complex process. To ensure that you’re left with a fair amount after repaying the insurance company, it’s often advisable to work with skilled Florida malpractice attorneys. They can help negotiate a reduction or even a waiver of the subrogation lien claim.

Remember, the ultimate goal is to ensure you receive the compensation you deserve, not to pay off your insurance company.

Engage a Florida Medical Malpractice Attorney

Subrogation liens are just the tip of the legal iceberg in a medical malpractice case. At the Shapiro Law Group, our experienced team of Florida medical malpractice attorneys stands ready to guide you through each step, ensuring your rights are protected. We’ll help you understand and negotiate any subrogation liens, letting you focus on your recovery.

Don’t let legal complexity add to your stress. Contact the Shapiro Law Group today, and let us help you navigate the choppy waters of your medical malpractice case.


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