Understanding PIP

Advance Health Blog

Understanding PIP

Chris Goetz - Saturday, March 26, 2016

Understanding “No-Fault” and Personal Injury Protection

Goetz with CaptionLike eleven other US states, Florida is a no-fault insurance state. What that means is that a driver’s auto insurance will cover certain costs, primarily their bodily injuries and those of their passengers, regardless of who is at fault in the accident. In essence, the no-fault law makes each driver responsible for their own injuries and places an insurance requirement on all drivers. Personal Injury Protection (PIP) coverage – sometimes called no-fault insurance – kicks in as soon as an accident occurs with no need to determine fault ahead of receiving medical care.

No-fault laws were enacted in twelve US states in an effort to curb the number of auto accident related lawsuits heard by the courts. The laws are controversial as some believe that they restrict a victims’ rights to file a lawsuit. In response, all twelve no-fault states have passed laws to address this issue.

How PIP Works

In Florida Personal Injury Protection policies pay 80% of medical bills up to $10,000, including those of your passengers’. In addition, PIP will pay up to 60% of wages lost due to injuries suffered in an accident. As one can imagine, this is not always enough to cover medical expenses, let alone lost wages. If there are additional medical bills after the PIP coverage runs out, it would be covered by additional insurance policies, if you have them. If the other driver is at fault, then there is the option to attempt to recover additional medical costs from the other driver and their insurance company. Believe it or not, depending on their coverage, this may require hiring an attorney and going to court.

The Benefits of PIP Coverage

The primary benefit of Personal Injury Protection coverage is that it activates immediately. Following a serious, or even just stressful, auto accident there is no need to worry about who is at fault or who will pay the medical bills. The payments for medical expenses and lost wages are generally made rapidly, and the injured only needs to deal with their own insurance company. It is important to realize that a single visit to a hospital emergency room could conceivably exhaust a PIP policy. Sometimes there is no choice, and by no means should one avoid going to the hospital immediately if they have suffered serious injuries. In other cases it may be beneficial to visit a medical doctor or chiropractor for care, many of which will see patients immediately.

Having Personal Injury Protection coverage will also help if the policy holder is injured in an automobile accident when they are not driving. A pedestrian or bicycle rider can make a claim against their PIP policy if they are struck by a car.

At Advance Health Services we provide care and rehabilitative services to auto accident victims every day. If you are involved in an accident of any kind, call us to find out how we can help you recover.

Dr. Chris Goetz was an offensive lineman with the San Diego Chargers and New York Jets from 1990-1992. Having seen the benefits of therapy as he recuperated from his NFL injuries, he decided to enroll in Chiropractic Medicine school and dedicate himself to bringing relief and wellness to others. He has been Owner/Director of Advance Health Services of Miami since 1999.