Court of Appeals Denies Medical Service Provider’s Claim Against No-Fault Insurer to Recover for Services Rendered to Plaintiff as PIP Benefits After She Signed a Release with Insurer

In this published opinion, the Michigan Court of Appeals reversed the trial court’s decision, which would have allowed a medical service provider (Michigan Head and Spine) to recover against State Farm for services rendered to plaintiff, who was injured in an auto accident, because the plaintiff signed a release with State Farm in which she agreed not to seek recovery for future medical services provided.

The plaintiff was injured in an auto accident.  She received personal insurance protection (PIP) benefits, including medical services, which were paid by State Farm.  She settled with State Farm and executed a release, in which she discharged and/or disclaimed any future PIP benefits related to treatment received for her injuries.  After she signed the release, plaintiff treated with the Michigan Head and Spine, who then sought recovery from State Farm.

The trial court denied a summary motion by State Farm and allowed MH&S to proceed against it on theories of contract and recovery of no-fault PIP benefits.  The Court of Appeals reversed, holding that Plaintiff’s release bound MH&S from seeking recovery on any theory.

This is a published opinion, which illustrates the importance to medical service providers of affirming the availability of insurance before treating a plaintiff.  The ruling of the case applies both to no-fault insurers, and other insurers, such as workers’ compensation carriers, that might be liable for payment for medical services on the basis of an injury.

Read the opinion here:  Michigan Head and Spine v. State Farm

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