What are personal injury protection benefits?
Personal injury protection coverage or “PIP” is a type of coverage in an auto insurance policy that pays your medical expenses, lost income and increased household expenses when you are injured in an car accident. PIP provides significant coverage. For example, I have $100,000 of PIP medical coverage in my car insurance policy.
Why can’t your regular health insurance cover your car accident injuries? If you are hurt in a car accident that was someone else’s fault, your health insurer may refuse to pay for your medical treatment. Even if your health insurer does agree to pay your medical bills, you may have significant out-of-pocket expenses for deductibles and copayments. In comparison, PIP pays all your medical bills with no copayments. Usually no deductible is required, although some car insurance policies do have a $250 deductible.
For more information, read my blog post How Does Personal Injury Protection (PIP) Insurance Work in Oregon?
How much car insurance should I have?
You should have enough car insurance to cover your damages if you are catastrophically injured by an uninsured driver. For example, I have $100,000 of PIP medical coverage and $250,000 in uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage.
See my blog post Motor Vehicle Insurance: How Much Should You Have? for more insight.
Why doesn’t my health insurance pay my medical bills from my car accident?
When you are in a motor vehicle accident, the insurance company for the owner of the car in which you were riding usually pays your medical expenses under its Personal injury Protection or “PIP” coverage. PIP pays your medical expenses, lost income and increased household expenses when you are injured in a car accident.
Many health insurance policies specify that your health insurer will not pay for medical treatment when the need for the treatment was due to the fault of another person. Even so, your health insurer may agree to pay for such treatment, especially if you sign an agreement to pay them back if you recover compensation from the at-fault party.
I often work with my clients’ health insurance companies to convince them to pay for accident-related treatments when my clients’ PIP benefits run out.
Feel free to contact me if you have questions – I’m happy to help, and initial consultations are always free.