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Protect Yourself with Florida’s PIP Policy

Personal injury protection is a big factor when it comes to automobile insurance in the state of Florida. First introduced in 1971, the purpose is to avoid litigation when it comes to minor personal injury situations.

What is PIP, exactly?

Personal Injury Protection, or PIP for short, is required at a $10,000 minimum for all automobile insurance in the state of Florida. It is otherwise known as “No Fault Insurance” due to the fact that the insurance will cover you no matter who was at fault in the accident. If you are the owner of a vehicle in Florida, it is required by law that PIP insurance is maintained at all times.

I’m injured in an accident. Who pays?

If you are in an accident, your own insurance company will pay you your PIP benefits. Again, this is regardless of who was at fault for the accident.

What’s covered?

PIP insurance will cover 80% of your medical bills, 60% of your lost wages, and $5,000 for death benefits. However, these are only covered at a maximum of $10,000. Any additional expenses will need to be paid for by the driver at fault. So, even though the policy is considered no fault, it is quite possible that the individual at fault for the accident will still be required to pay damages. Depending on the severity of the accident, $10,000 can be used very quickly, and the use of a law firm could still be necessary in order to help secure funds that you are entitled to. Florida, car accidents that result in permanent injury, scarring, or disfigurement are the only claims that are allowed to be completely litigated outside of the no-fault system.

Your PIP also extends to members of your household, including your child. It also covers passengers who lack PIP Insurance, provided they do not own a vehicle.

Do I have to be in my car to be protected?

You will be covered by your PIP insurance if you are in someone else’s vehicle. Additionally, you will be covered if an automobile accident occurs while you are a pedestrian or a bicyclist.

What happens if I chose not to be insured?

Again, PIP coverage is mandated by law in the state of Florida. Failing to keep insurance on your vehicle could lead to a suspension of your driving privilege for up to three years or until proof of Florida insurance is provided.

How does all of this affect my insurance rates?

Having a PIP requirement could lead to costlier rates. However, litigation is also a big determinant when it comes to the cost of insurance. In instances where a suit goes to trial and the jury decides on higher awards for the plaintiff, an increased insurance rate is typically likely.

Is this unique to Florida?

Florida is one of only 15 states that require personal injury protection. However, unlike most other states, Florida does not require bodily injury liability benefits, which will pay the costs of others’ injuries.

This seems pretty straightforward….

While it may seem straightforward on paper, often times these cases can quickly become very complicated. There are many ins and outs that while difficult to navigate, are vital to your successful recovery. A personal injury attorney is an experienced individual who would be able to make sure you receive everything you are entitled to. If further legal action is required against another party, a personal injury attorney would obviously be very beneficial, and frankly, necessary in order to pursue the proper course of action.

Hopefully the personal injury prevention policy is one that you carry on your insurance but never have to utilize. However, if you or a loved one are injured in an automobile accident, it is important to know precisely what you are entitled to as a driver in the state of Florida!

Michael J. Babboni's wide-ranging legal career is based on the strong belief that everyone should be treated fairly and have access to effective legal help. Michael began putting his beliefs in action by helping the people of St. Petersburg Florida get what they are owed in civil trials fighting to protect families by making corporations pay, and honor their obligations.

Protect Yourself with Florida’s PIP Policy

Goldman Babboni Fernandez
Murphy & Walsh

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