Personal injury protection, also known as PIP insurance, is a type of car insurance coverage that is mandatory in the state of Florida. This coverage helps to pay for medical expenses, lost wages, and other costs that may result from a car accident, regardless of who was at fault. In this blog post, we will answer some frequently asked questions about personal injury protection in Florida, including what it covers, how much coverage is required, and how to file a claim.
What is personal injury protection (PIP) insurance?
Personal injury protection (PIP) insurance is a type of car insurance coverage that is required by law in the state of Florida. PIP coverage helps to pay for medical expenses, lost wages, and other costs that may result from a car accident, regardless of who was at fault. PIP coverage also provides benefits to passengers in your vehicle, as well as pedestrians and bicyclists who are injured in a car accident involving your vehicle.
How much PIP insurance coverage is required in Florida?
In Florida, all drivers are required to have a minimum of $10,000 in PIP coverage. This means that your car insurance policy must include at least $10,000 in personal injury protection coverage in order to be compliant with state law.
What does PIP insurance cover in Florida?
PIP insurance in Florida covers a wide range of expenses that may result from a car accident, including medical bills, lost wages, and other related costs. This coverage can help to pay for:
- Medical expenses, including ambulance transportation, surgical costs, hospitalization, and rehabilitation
- Lost wages, up to a certain amount, if you are unable to work as a result of your injuries
- Replacement services, such as child care and housekeeping, if you are unable to perform these tasks due to your injuries
- Funeral expenses, in the event of a fatal car accident
- Death benefits, for the surviving spouse and dependents of a person who is killed in a car accident
80% of all reasonable expenses if the following conditions are met:
- the injured person receives initial services and care within 14 days after the motor vehicle accident
- the initial services and care is provided by a properly licensed and legal medical care professional
Disability benefits provide coverage to’ eligible persons’ who are unable to work due to injuries sustained in a motor vehicle accident. Benefits pay:
- 60% of any loss wages and loss of earning capacity
- Reasonable expenses for hiring services to perform functions the injured person would have performed
PIP insurance must also include death benefits in the amount of $5,000 per individual. The death benefit is in addition to the medical and disability benefits. The insurance company may pay death benefits to the executor or administrator of the deceased’s estate, to any of the deceased’s relatives by blood, legal adoption, or marriage, or to any person appearing to the insurer to be equitably entitled to such benefits.
Are there Restrictions of What PIP will Pay?
Yes, PIP coverage does have some restrictions, such as:
Medical Benefit Limits
Benefits are limited to no more than $2,500 unless you had an emergency medical condition (EMC). An EMC is a medical condition that manifests itself by acute symptoms of sufficient severity. The absence of immediate medical attention could reasonably be expected to result in any of the following:
- Serious jeopardy to patient health
- Serious impairment to bodily functions
- Serious dysfunction of any bodily organ or partIf a physician determines that the injuries do not meet the definition of an emergency medical condition, the PIP benefits provide only $2,500 coverage.
14 Day Rule
It is also important to seek medical care promptly after an accident to protect your rights to receive compensation from your PIP insurance. You only have 14 days to seek medical treatment. If you do not, you forfeit your PIP coverage, and the insurance company will not cover any claim.
Seeking medical care after an accident is always a good idea. Even without the presence of pain or blood, you may have sustained injuries. It is quite common for injuries to manifest themselves several days or weeks after an accident. It is never a bad idea to have a doctor check you out and make sure there are no signs of internal damage or soft tissue injuries.
Can I choose my own medical provider for PIP coverage?
Yes, you have the right to choose your own medical provider for PIP coverage in Florida. You do not have to see a doctor who is in your insurance company’s network, and you do not need to obtain a referral from your primary care physician. However, it is important to keep in mind that your PIP coverage will only pay for medical expenses that are considered “reasonable and necessary” for the treatment of your injuries.
How do I file a PIP insurance claim in Florida?
If you are involved in a car accident in Florida and you need to file a PIP insurance claim, there are a few steps you will need to follow:
- First, seek medical attention as soon as possible. It is important to get any injuries treated promptly, and to document your injuries and treatment with your medical provider.
- Next, notify your car insurance company as soon as possible. Your insurance company will need to know about the accident in order to process your claim.
- Gather all necessary documentation, including medical bills, proof of lost wages, and any other relevant documentation.
- Submit your claim to your car insurance company. Your insurance company will review your claim and determine how much coverage is available under your PIP policy.
Contact Florida Personal Injuries Attorneys McQuaid & Douglas
If you have been injured in a car accident in Florida, you should talk with an experienced personal injury attorney. The attorneys at McQuaid & Douglas are available to discuss your case and will provide the legal help you need. If you would like to learn more about our experienced personal injury attorneys and how we can help you, you can find more information here. You can also contact us for a free consultation.