What is the procedure of collecting my settlement check from the defendant's insurance company after wining in small claims court?
Question Details: I won in small claims court for a personal injury claim. The defendant's insurance company has been giving me a hard time releasing my check. They first insisted that they give me 2 separate checks, one for my MRI paid by Medi-Cal and then the remainder made out to me. After I put a complaint with the insurance commissioner they stated that I can now just sign a hold harmless agreement for Medi-Cal in order to release my check in the full amount. I am aware that they have 30 business days to send a check after the judgment, but I assumed they would just send a check for the claim and there would be no paper work involved. Is this standard procedure?
Yes, the hold harmless is a standard procedure: you won $X--a certain amount of money. Medi-Cal has a right to some of it, for the MRI. The insurer has the right to make sure that Medi-Cal won't come after them for payment if they give you the full amount and you fail or refuse to pay Medi-Cal. The hold harmless protects them from that: it obligates you to pay Medi-Cal from the settlement or award.