Can I re-open my case if the lawyer settled before finding out what the medical bills were?

UPDATED: Apr 18, 2015

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Can I re-open my case if the lawyer settled before finding out what the medical bills were?

It was a $100,000 policy with $27,000 in bills from medicare and $2,000 in medpay but he settled for $10,000 before knowing this? Can a lawyer legally cash a settlement check made out to him (and) his client without his client signing the check or knowing about it?

Asked on April 18, 2015 under Personal Injury, California


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 7 years ago | Contributor

1) If the case was settled, then no, you cannot re-open it. However, you may have a malpractice claim against your attorney for him settling without even knowing what the medical bills were.

2) If the check was made out to the attorney for you, then he could deposit it in his account and then remit the money to you. That is common: the check goes to the attorney, then the attorney passes it on to the client.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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