PIP Benefit Stacking: What To Do If You Run Out of PIP Medical Benefits?

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Let’s talk about PIP benefits! And particularly what you should do if you run out of your primary medical coverage compensation.

But first off – if you’ve been injured in a motor vehicle accident, your auto insurer (or the insurance company that insured the motor vehicle you were driving or riding in) will pay your medical expenses. All the details on what PIP can do for you are in my article How Does Personal Injury Protection (PIP) Insurance Work in Oregon?

In this article, we’ll look at ways how you can use other insurance policies to supplement your own PIP benefits. The law calls this “stacking”.

PIP Benefit Payout

Stacking PIP Benefits When You’ve Been Injured in Someone Else’s Car

Say you were hurt in an accident while you were driving or riding as a passenger in a car you did not own. The car’s insurance company will pay $15,000 or more of your medical expenses – greatly depending on what the policy limits are. Note that the State of Oregon requires insurance companies to provide a minimum of $15,000 in PIP payouts. It’s quite possible though the policy could provide as much as $100,000 in medical compensation!

With medical costs as high as they are today, it’s likely you’ll pretty quickly exhaust that first PIP payout. Luckily, you can recover more benefits by stacking  them – by tapping into your own PIP policy. In Oregon, that means you will have at least $30,000 in PIP benefits to cover those medical costs.

Stacking PIP Benefits When You’ve Been Injured in Your Own Car

Logic would suggest that if you got into an accident while driving your own car, the only PIP benefit available to you would come from your own car insurance. That’s however not the case. 

Indeed, there’s a chance you may be able to recover more PIP benefits under a family member’s auto policy – if you lived with them at the time of the accident. For example: if you had your own auto insurance policy but lived with your parents, your parents’ auto policy would provide you with an additional PIP benefit.

PIP Benefit Stacking

How to Stack Benefits When You’ve Been Injured as a Pedestrian or Bicyclist

In a third – perhaps less common – scenario, you were struck by a car while walking or riding your bike.

In this case, your own car insurance will provide you with your primary PIP benefits. However, the at-fault driver’s insurance will provide you with additional benefits, if you run out of your primary ones and don’t have health insurance. (Here are the Oregon law details.)

What happens if you didn’t have car insurance (maybe because you simply didn’t own a car) and also didn’t live with an insured family member ? Then your health insurer pays your medical expenses.


These are some straight forward situations under which you can stack PIP benefits. From here, the scenarios can get pretty complex. It’s a good idea to talk to an injury lawyer to see how you might be able to cover a greater part of your medical expenses.

I always make sure to get my clients all of the insurance benefits they are entitled to. This includes finding all insurance policies that cover my clients’ medical expenses.

Gary R. Johnson Law is here to help and advocate for you.

We never charge for an initial consultation, so give us a call today.