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What is PIP Coverage & Who Pays My Medical Bills After An Auto Accident?

After being involved in an auto accident, one of the common concerns is who will pay for the medical bills. In Florida, individuals injured in any type of car accident are required to use their own auto insurance policy, known as “Personal Injury Protection,” “PIP” or “No Fault Coverage,” to pay the initial $10,000 of medical bills. While it may seem unfair to utilize personal insurance when not at fault, Florida law mandates this approach. The good news is that using PIP coverage will not lead to increased insurance premiums or penalties, as long as you were not responsible for the accident.

What Types Of Accidents Trigger PIP or No Fault Benefits To Pay Out?

THE ANSWER

An auto accident encompasses any type of incident involving a vehicle. This includes not only accidents where someone was driving the vehicle but also incidents such as cyclists being hit by cars, pedestrians being hit by cars, or even individuals falling out of cars. An exception to the rule is motorcyclist who are injured in auto accidents—they do not qualify for PIP benefits.

Do I Qualify For Pip Coverage If I Don’t Have My Own Car Insurance?

THE ANSWER

If you don’t own a car or have your own car insurance, there are still avenues to obtain PIP insurance coverage. Here are a few scenarios to consider:

Residing with a Family Member: If you reside with a family member who owns a car, you will be covered under their car insurance, even if you are not listed on the policy.

Passenger in Someone Else’s Car: If you were a passenger in someone else’s car at the time of the accident, the vehicle you were riding in (referred to as the host vehicle) will provide you with PIP coverage.

Pedestrian or Cyclist Hit by a Car: If you were a pedestrian or cyclist hit by a car and you don’t have any other source of PIP coverage, the vehicle that hit you will provide the necessary PIP coverage.

It’s important to explore these options if you find yourself without auto insurance or a car, as PIP coverage is still available to help with your medical expenses.

What Does PIP Or No-Fault Benefits Cover?

THE ANSWER

PIP benefits cover 80% of your medical bills up to $10,000. The payment is sent directly to the medical providers and can’t be used to compensate you for injuries. It works similar to health insurance meaning the doctors submit their bill and get paid by the insurance company directly. Depending on the type of PIP policy you purchased, potentially you can use the PIP benefits to reimburse you for lost wages or travel to and from medical providers.

Who Pays My Medical Bills After Pip Exhaust?

THE ANSWER

If you exhausted your PIP benefits, it is then appropriate to submit your medical bills to health insurance if you have any. You will be subject to your copayments, deductibles and other out-of-pockets pursuant to yoru health plan. If the accident was the result of someone else’s negligence, you can then pursue compensation from the other driver’s auto insurance policy or your own policy if you carry uninsured motorist benefits in the event certain criteria is met. We recommend reading our article involving “how much is my case worth” to learn about the process of making an injury claim after the PIP funds are exhausted.

Conclusion:

While the process of medical bill payment after an accident in Florida may involve various stages and considerations, it’s important to remember that an auto accident includes any type of incident involving a vehicle, not just situations where someone was driving. Understanding the law and your insurance coverage is essential.

Seeking legal guidance and consulting a personal injury law firm can help ensure you receive the appropriate compensation and navigate the complexities of the process.