What Happens if I Do Not Address a Lien?
Posted November 2nd, 2022.
Categories: Legal Malpractice.
After receiving a settlement or verdict for your personal injury claim, you may be relieved to think that your fight is finally over. However, this may not necessarily be the case. This is because you and your attorney must next work to address the rights of those who have liens against the money that you have recovered in your lawsuit. It is unacceptable for your attorney to neglect to inform you of this or for them to otherwise fail to take action. Read on to discover what happens if you do not address a lien and how a seasoned New Jersey legal malpractice attorney at The Law Offices of Mark S. Guralnick can assist you in resolving this.
By definition, what is a lien?
For your personal injury lawsuit, a lien is considered another party’s interest in your property. Such interest typically stems from an established contract or statute. So, even after your lawsuit is finalized, the issue of a lien can still be outstanding. This can become a significant issue if your attorney neglected to address a lien during the negotiation process.
What are the different types of liens?
There are four different types of liens that are commonly addressed: child support, Medicaid, Medicare, and private health insurance liens.
For one, if you are behind on your mandatory child support payments, then you and your attorney are responsible for covering this obligation with the recovery you earned from your case.
Then, if Medicaid paid for the treatment you received for your injuries, the ones which are related to your case, you and your attorney are responsible for ensuring that Medicaid’s lien is protected. This is because Medicaid will not go after the at-fault party for their recovery.
And if you are eligible for Medicare, you must know about any interests they may have in your claim. If not, your Social Security benefits may be suspended or you may even be sued.
Lastly, you and your attorney must overview copies of your insurance policy and benefits plan so that your insurance company can be appropriately compensated.
What happens if my attorney does not address a lien?
If you are indebted to another party and recover financial compensation in your personal injury lawsuit, your attorney is responsible for using that money to pay off your debts. In the state of New Jersey, if your attorney neglects to address a lien, then significant legal issues may come your way. This may cause you to suffer financially, which defeats the point of your earning financial compensation in your personal injury lawsuit.
Nevertheless, if you find yourself in this unfortunate situation, you must seek new legal representation to resolve it. You do not deserve to miss out on the financial compensation that you rightfully earned and that you require to heal. That said, you do not need to look any further than one of our competent attorneys at our legal malpractice law firm. Call to schedule your initial consultation with us today.