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I had a car accident about 6 months ago in Harris County. I went to ER and treated with PT for a few months.

Houston, TX |

I had soft tissue injuries and rib fractures which healed. I sent my medical bills and records to the insurance adjuster and accepted a settlement. of several thousand above my bills. I signed a release 4 weeks ago notarized and faxed back the same day. I have not received my check. Every time I call I'm told that because I went to ER they want to make sure there is no lien. I checked public county clerk's records online and no lien filed. I wen to county clerk's office and was told no lien found. So if I have access to this information the insurance company should too. Plus the release I signed says I'm responsible for any liens. Are they in breach of the settlement agreement? Can I suefor breach? How can I force them to send my settlement check, a lien was never filed with county clerk.

Attorney Answers 8

  1. Precisely why you should have retained an attorney. Suing them for breach; without an attorney? Not easy. If our amount is up to small claims limit, try there. The carrier has boxed you in. Send a certified letter. Call someone local, although probably too late you never know...

    Personal injury cases only; I'm good at it; you be the Judge! All information provided is for informational and educational purposes only. No attorney client relationship has been formed or should be inferred. Please speak with a local and qualified attorney. I truly wish you and those close to you all the best. Jeff

  2. Maybe you can vitiate the agreement, based on their failure to pay as required, get an attorney and recover fair value for your claim.

  3. You are just going to have to get a lawyer. There is nothing else you can do to make them respond. You might have some trouble finding someone who is willing to get involved at this point, but keep looking, you will find someone.

    This is not legal advice. You should always discuss the specifics of your issue in person with an attorney. Be aware that there are time limits on all claims that depend on the kind of claim, so do not delay in seeking an attorney.

  4. Personal injury claims are not "D-I-Y" tasks ("do it yourself"). If you had hired a good lawyer at the in the beginning, the funding would likely have occurred a month ago (or more). Further, the gross settlement amount would likely have been significantly higher.

    Now, you can sue for breach of contract if you have an enforceable contract (it sounds like you do, but more facts are needed). In order to recover for attorney fees under a breach of contract claim, you need an attorney. An attorney can send a Chapter 38 demand letter alleging breach of contract. If any eligible emergency service provider perfects a lien before your settlement is funded, you will have a lien to resolve also.

    John Zgourides
    Board Certified, Personal Injury Trial Law
    Texas Board of Legal Specialization
    (713) 876-7001

    My responses to questions on Avvo are never intended as legal advice and must not be relied upon as legal advice. I give legal advice only in the course of an attorney-client relationship. Exchange of information through Avvo's Questions forum does not establish an attorney-client relationship with me. That relationship is established only by individual consultation and execution of a written agreement for legal services.

  5. This is why you need one of the above distinguished attorneys in your state. Don't play lawyer, retain one. Good luck.

  6. Don't do it yourself, retain one of the Texas lawyers above

  7. If they don't pay you'll need to hire a lawyer.

  8. If your car accident was in Harris County, as it sounds like you are aware, there is an online database that would show whether a hospital lien has been filed under your name for treatment related to your car accident:

    If you haven't already, run a search under your name showing there is no lien filed, then print it out and fax or email it to the adjuster handling your claim. Get a supervisor on the line if the adjuster gives you the same old response and ask the supervisor what the hold-up is. You might consider telling them that if they don't issue payment promptly (they've had four weeks), you will go see an attorney to discuss whether the settlement is still valid since they haven't paid within a reasonable time frame.

    If your accident is NOT in Harris County, it is possible that their delay may be more reasonable. I've had to check for a hospital lien in one of the surrounding counties (it may have been Montgomery, I can't recall) and it was a several weeks long process that could only be handled by U.S. Mail.

    Either way, best of luck. Hope this little bit of advice is of some help.

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