Can TriCare or the VA Put a Lien on My Personal Injury Settlement?

Can TriCare or the VA Put a Lien on My Personal Injury Settlement?

Under the Federal Medical Care Recovery Act (FMCRA), the federal government can recover any medical expenses that it paid for a beneficiary for the treatment of injuries in certain situations. These situations include those in which the injury results in a claim of third-party liability. Essentially, if the injured party receives a settlement or damages award from the insurance company of that third party, the federal government can intervene and take its share of the money that it paid out to treat the injuries.

For instance, TriCare is the federal health insurance company that serves military personnel. If a drunk driver hits an active military member driving home from his base, for instance, and the injured person receives a settlement from the drunk driver’s insurance company, then TriCare can claim a portion of that settlement up to and including the full amount of the benefits that it paid to treat the soldier’s injuries. There is no limit on how much of the settlement TriCare can take, so long as it is under or equal to the amount of medical care benefits that it paid out for the soldier’s injuries.

The Veterans’ Administration (VA) operates in much the same manner. Under FMCRA, that entity also can impose a lien on the proceeds of any lawsuit compensation award or settlement amount to repay the VA for services rendered to the injured veteran.

While other medical providers and various entities also can place on liens on personal injury settlements in some situations, TriCare and VA liens are likely superior to all other liens, except Medicare and Medicaid liens. As a result, the federal government always will receive the portion of your settlement to which it is entitled before any other entity or person receives anything on their liens.

If you have suffered injuries while riding a bicycle, you may greatly benefit from calling us today and getting the advice that you need. Bonnici Law Group has the experience and knowledge that is invaluable when making a claim for compensation following a bicycle accident. When you need answers, contact Bonnici Law Group today at 619-259-5199. As we focus our efforts on bike-related personal injury cases, we know how to protect your rights and build a strong claim for compensation in your case.


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