If you have an insurance policy here in Florida and you get into an auto accident, or even if you live with a family member who has an active insurance policy, you may qualify for benefits through what is called PIP, or personal injury protection. These benefits are referred to as no fault benefits, meaning even if you were at fault you are entitled to receive them, and they will help cover some expenses after an auto accident. Read below to find out more about PIP benefits, and find out if you are entitled to receive them.
What is PIP and how do you qualify for it?
PIP is insurance that you get as a part of your auto insurance policy to help assist you with immediate needs following an auto accident. You are entitled to these benefits no matter who was at fault for an accident, meaning even if you caused the accident and had to go to the hospital, you still qualify for these benefits to help pay for your initial medical bills. The amount here in Florida is $10,000.00. These benefits can also be used to compensate you for lost wages, if you missed any time from work because of the accident. You do not need an attorney to get these benefits, and the medical providers that you see after an auto accident will usually step in and bill your insurance directly to get paid. Be aware, PIP does not cover certain medical expenses such as acupuncture treatment or massage therapy.
Another very important piece to qualifying for your PIP benefits is that you must treat within the first 14 days following the accident to qualify. If you wait 15 days to go see a physician for your injuries, it will be too late, and you will have waived your right to qualify for these benefits. It is always important to get examined at the scene of an accident, and if you are evaluated by EMS and let’s say they transport you to the emergency room or you take yourself to the emergency room following the accident, that counts as treatment and you would be covered.
I don’t have an auto insurance policy, but a family member I live with does, is that ok?
You do not have to have your own auto insurance policy to get PIP if you live with a family member who does have an auto policy. If you live with a family member, their policy will step in and pay for your PIP benefits. So, if you get into an accident and are not carrying insurance of your own, you may be able to use theirs to cover your immediate expenses and needs following an auto accident.
What is an emergency medical condition?
An emergency medical condition is what needs to be established by a medical professional to ensure that you continue to receive your full $10,000.00 in PIP benefits. If you are unable to get a physician to say that you have suffered an emergency medical condition following an auto accident, your PIP benefits will be capped at $2,500.00. If you do see a medical expert and they make a determination that you are suffering from a non-emergency injury, you will be limited to the $2,500.00.
What should I do if my insurance company is not paying my PIP benefits?
If you were involved in an auto accident and your insurance company is not paying out your PIP benefits as they should, you may need to get an attorney involved to force the insurance company to pay up. You should not have to fight with an insurance company to get the benefits you rightly deserve as a loyal customer. You work hard to pay your insurance premiums on time, the last thing you want is for the insurance company to withhold benefits you are entitled to receive. Contact the attorneys at the Lopez Law Group today. We can be reached at 727-933-0015. Our attorneys are standing by and are ready to assist you with getting the PIP benefits you need and deserve.