The net settlement is the amount of money that remains after the victim pays for the following:
- Reimbursement to the victim or his or her parents of the amount they paid out of pocket for medical treatment and other costs, less how much money the insurance company already paid them under the medical payments coverage or as advances against the final settlement.
- Reimbursement to the attorney for unreimbursed “costs,” meaning amounts paid, incurred and to be incurred for a photographer, private investigator, record copying company, medical witnesses, court filing fees, court charges for certified copies, a trustee (in some jurisdictions), and other costs.
- The victim’s attorney fee.
- Amounts payable to doctors, hospitals and other health care providers for past medical treatment. Many providers will agree to reduce their charges under certain circumstances.
- Amounts payable to government agencies such as Medicare and Medicaid programs. Some agencies will agree to reduce their charges, some have legal limits as to the amount that they can recover from the victim, and others will not reduce their charges under any circumstances.
- Amounts payable to insurance companies that paid benefits under health insurance policies which provide such companies a right of reimbursement (also called a lien or subrogation), in states that permit insurance companies to have such rights. Some will agree to reduce their charges, and in certain states they have to do so if the victim retained an attorney and they did not.