Code of the District of Columbia

Chapter 2. Hospitals.


§ 40–201. Hospital’s lien for services on recovery in accident cases.

Every association, corporation, or other institution, and any agency of the United States or the District of Columbia, maintaining a hospital in the District of Columbia, which shall furnish medical or other service to any patient injured by reason of an accident causing injuries not covered by the Employees’ Compensation Act or the Workmen’s Compensation Act, shall, if such injured party shall assert or maintain a claim against another for damages on account of such injuries, have a lien upon that part going or belonging to such patient, of any recovery or sum had or collected or to be collected by such patient, or by his heirs or personal representatives in the case of his death, whether by judgment or by settlement or compromise to the amount of the reasonable and necessary charges of such hospital for the treatment, care, and maintenance of such patient in such hospital up to the date of payment of such damages; provided, that the lien herein set forth shall not be applied or considered valid against anyone suffering injuries coming under the Employees’ Compensation Act or the Workmen’s Compensation Act in this District.


(June 30, 1939, 53 Stat. 990, ch. 255, § 1; June 19, 1948, 62 Stat. 496, ch. 525, § 1.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 38-301.

1973 Ed., § 38-301.

References in Text

The Employees’ Compensation Act, referred to in this section, refers to the Act of September 7, 1916 which is codified in 5 U.S.C. § 8101 et seq.

The Workmen’s Compensation Act refers to former Chapter 5 of Title 36, which was repealed by the Act of July 1, 1980, D.C. Law 3-77, § 46.


§ 40–202. Notice.

No such lien shall be effective, however, unless a written notice containing the name and address of the injured person, the date of the accident, the name and location of the hospital, and the name of the person or persons, firm or firms, corporation or corporations alleged to be liable to the injured party for the injuries received, shall be filed in the Office of the Recorder of Deeds of the District of Columbia in a docket provided for such liens, prior to the payment of any moneys to such injured person, his attorneys, or legal representatives as compensation for such injuries; nor unless the hospital shall also mail, postage prepaid, a copy of such notice with a statement of the date of filing thereof to the person or persons, firm or firms, corporation or corporations alleged to be liable to the injured party for the injuries sustained prior to the payment of any moneys to such injured person, his attorneys, or legal representatives as compensation for such injuries. Such hospital shall mail a copy of such notice to any insurance carrier which has insured such person, firm, or corporation against such liability, where the name of such insurance carrier is ascertained.


(June 30, 1939, 53 Stat. 990, ch. 255, § 2; June 25, 1948, 62 Stat. 991, ch. 646, § 32(b); May 24, 1949, 63 Stat. 107, ch. 139, § 127; July 5, 1966, 80 Stat. 265, Pub. L. 89-493, § 16.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 38-302.

1973 Ed., § 38-302.


§ 40–203. Liability for failure to pay hospital’s lien.

Any person or persons, firm or firms, corporation or corporations, including an insurance carrier, making any payment to such patient or to his attorneys or heirs or legal representatives as compensation for the injury sustained, after the filing and mailing of such notice without paying to such hospital the amount of its lien or so much thereof as can be satisfied out of the moneys due under any final judgment or compromise or settlement agreement after paying the amount of any prior liens, shall for a period of 1 year from the date of payment to such patient or his heirs, attorneys, or legal representatives, as aforesaid, be and remain liable to such hospital for the amount which such hospital was entitled to receive as aforesaid; and any such association, corporation, or other institution, and any agency of the United States or the District of Columbia, maintaining such hospital, may, within such period, enforce its lien by a suit at law against such person or persons, firm or firms, corporation or corporations making any such payment.


(June 30, 1939, 53 Stat. 990, ch. 255, § 3; June 19, 1948, 62 Stat. 496, ch. 525, § 2.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 38-303.

1973 Ed., § 38-303.


§ 40–204. Permission to examine hospital records.

Any person or persons, firm or firms, corporation or corporations legally liable for such lien or against whom a claim shall be asserted for compensation for such injuries, shall be permitted to examine the ledger entries and similar records of any such association, corporation, or other institution or body, and of any agency of the United States or the District of Columbia, maintaining such hospital for the purpose of ascertaining the basis for such lien.


(June 30, 1939, 53 Stat. 991, ch. 255, § 4; June 19, 1948, 62 Stat. 496, ch. 525, § 3.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 38-304.

1973 Ed., § 38-304.


§ 40–205. Recorder to provide lien docket.

The Recorder of Deeds of the District of Columbia shall provide a suitable bound book to be called the hospital lien docket, in which, upon the filing of any lien claim under the provisions of this chapter, he shall enter the name of the injured person, the name of the person, firm, or corporation alleged to be liable for the injuries, the date of the accident, and the name of the hospital or other institution or agency making the claim. The Recorder of Deeds shall index the same in the name of the injured person and shall charge and collect a fee of $1 for recording, indexing, and releasing the lien so filed.


(June 30, 1939, 53 Stat. 991, ch. 255, § 5; June 25, 1948, 62 Stat. 991, ch. 646, § 32(b); June 19, 1948, 62 Stat. 496, ch. 525, § 4; May 24, 1949, 63 Stat. 107, ch. 139, § 127; July 5, 1966, 80 Stat. 265, Pub. L. 89-493, § 16.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 38-305.

1973 Ed., § 38-305.