In the US, it is typical for patients to sign contracts with a medical office assigning whatever benefits are applicable from their health insurance to the doctor's office and leaving the patient financially responsible for what is left unpaid.
Is there a minimum standard for doctor's offices to actually complete the insurance process before passing on the rest of the bill, and if so, what kind of remedy is available if they don't?
Example: A doctor's office sends to the insurance company details of a procedure to be paid, but left off one fact that the insurance company needed to complete the claim. The insurance company informs the doctor's office that in order to finish the claim, they have to complete the missing bit of paperwork. Instead of doing so, the doctor's office leaves benefits the client is entitled to unclaimed and proceeds to bill the patient for the unpaid amount.
Is this a valid bill under that standard kind of contract? Is there some kind of minimum due diligence required on the doctor's part, and if so, is there some area of tort law that is available for redress?