Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

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UPDATED: Sep 15, 2020

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Here is how you handle a claim: First, an in-network doctor does the billing for you. Sometimes you pay part of a visit but you never pay the entire claim before you get the insurance company statement. Second, your carrier sends you an “Explanation of Benefits” or “EOB” (except in Medicare, where the same document is called an “Explanation of Medical Benefits” or “EOMB”). You read that document carefully and somewhere on it you will find the dollar amount you owe your physician or hospital. Third, you send a check to the physician/hospital/lab for whatever amount is in the “you owe this much” column. In-network doctors and hospitals are not allowed to “balance bill”: pay what the carrier says you owe. If you continue to get a bill, fax or mail them a copy of the EOB with the amount highlighted that you owed and paid. That should be the end of the issue.