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Taxman Illinois Health Care Lien Act Explained

Posted on April 11, 2023

When individuals sustain injuries caused by the negligence of others, they need medical care immediately. They do not have time to wait for a settlement or jury verdict to come through before they can start receiving and paying for treatment. The state of Illinois has passed the Illinois Health Care Services Lien Act in order to allow medical professionals to place a lien on any claims arising out of the patient’s injuries so that they may be paid back after a settlement or jury verdict comes through.

What is a Medical Lien?

The Health Care Services Lien Act went into effect a few years ago in Illinois and is designed to ensure that medical providers receive payment for services by allowing them to place a lien on any claim arising from a personal injury patient’s claims against other parties.

But why would a medical lien be necessary in the first place?

In general, individuals who sustain injuries caused by the negligence of other parties must seek medical treatment immediately. This medical treatment will ultimately result in medical bills that the patient receives, but it usually takes several months or several years for a person to receive payment through a settlement or as a result of a personal injury jury verdict.

This leaves a gap of time where the individual may not be able to afford medical bills, even if they know they are going to receive compensation for their injuries. Medical liens are a way to provide a guarantee to medical professionals that they will be the first to receive compensation after a settlement comes in, and the hope is that the medical providers will continue treatment for the patient.

The Act does provide protections for the patient as well because it limits the total amount of compensation health care professionals and providers are allowed to recover from the settlement or jury verdict.

We do want to point out that any injury claims filed under the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Act are not subject to the Health Care Services Lien Act.

Under the Act, medical providers are required to serve by registered mail or in person the injury victim and the party with which the claim exists that they have placed a lien on the claim. The notice of lien must contain the name and address of the injury victim, the date of the injury, the name and address of the medical professional and provider, as well as the name of the party alleged to be liable for the claim.

How Can You Ensure You do This Correctly?

Understanding how to navigate the medical landscape after you sustain an injury is incredibly challenging period injury victims should be focused on recovering, not handling the complexities involved with recovering compensation and receiving medical treatment. We strongly encourage any injury victim in Illinois to reach out to a skilled attorney who can help them navigate this process. An attorney will work with the medical providers to ensure the medical lien is established correctly and fairly for all parties involved.

Injury victims deserve compensation, and they also deserve medical treatment while they await their compensation. The law in Illinois provides a route to make this possible, and an attorney can help implement it.