What You NEED To Know About No-fault Insurance
- No-fault insurance is available under your vehicle insurance, or the insurance on the vehicle you are occupying.
- You must receive qualified medical treatment within 14 days following the accident or you may not be entitled to any PIP benefits.
- Qualified medical treatment includes medical doctors, chiropractors, hospitals, and emergency medical personnel. It does not, however, include services provided by a masseuse or an acupuncturist.
- Standard PIP coverage is $10,000 and will pay 80% of covered medical expenses and qualifying lost wages at 60%, unless excluded.
- Your PIP coverage not only protects you in your own vehicle but can also cover your injuries when you are a passenger in another vehicle, a pedestrian, or on a bicycle.
- Good medical treatment with a qualified injury physician is paramount for the successful outcome of your injury case.
- Florida’s no-fault insurance is complex but DeLoach, Hofstra, & Cavonis is here to help you. Contact Paul Cavonis at 727-568-6693 for a free consultation.
The Full Story About Florida's No-fault Insurance
Florida is a no-fault motor vehicle insurance state. This means that under the Florida No-Fault Motor Vehicle Law the owner of an operating motor vehicle is required to carry Personal Injury Protection (PIP) insurance. Personal Injury Protection, PIP and No-Fault are different names for the exact same insurance coverage. This system was originally established in Florida during 1971. The goal at that time was to decrease the burden that local courts were experiencing due to insurance claims. By eliminating the option for drivers to choose whether they wanted to pursue compensation from their own insurance or from the at-fault party’s insurance in the event of an accident, this new system allowed for faster recovery to the individuals.
No-Fault coverage is unique in that following an automobile accident, this coverage will pay the insured’s qualifying medical bills regardless of fault up to the coverage limits purchased. The average policy is $10,000.00. There is an option to choose a deductible of $250.00, $500.00, and $1,000.00. A standard PIP policy pays covered medical expenses at 80% and qualifying lost wages at 60%. The coverage for loss of wages can be excluded. Additional insurance called “Medical Payments” coverage is available for a very low cost. Medical Payments coverage picks up the additional 20% of the qualifying medical bills which are not covered by the standard PIP policy. Further, the PIP benefits will reimburse a covered insured for out-of-pocket expenses such as prescriptions, mileage to and from medical providers, and replacement household services. Replacement household services refers to duties that an insured is unable to carry out as result of injuries sustained in the incident and there has to pay another party to perform those duties. Examples include house cleaning and yard care.
It is imperative that you seek qualified medical treatment within 14 days following the accident or PIP coverage will be automatically unavailable.
Qualified medical treatment includes medical doctors, chiropractors, hospitals, and emergency medical personnel. It does not, however, include services provided by a masseuse or an acupuncturist.
PIP coverage follows you like a shadow. Therefore, your PIP coverage applies not only when you are in your own vehicle, but if you are a passenger in someone else’s vehicle or even if you are injured by a motor vehicle as a pedestrian or a bicyclist. Relatives who reside with you may also be covered by your PIP insurance while driving your car, as a passenger in both your car or in another’s car, and also if they are struck by a vehicle as a pedestrian or on a bicycle. Finally, if you are injured in your vehicle outside of the state of Florida you and your insured relatives may be covered under PIP, provided the injury occurs within the U.S., its territories, or Canada.
In the event that a death occurs as a direct result of an automobile accident, there are death benefits payable under the PIP coverage in the amount of $5,000.00.
In looking at the requirements of the Florida No-Fault system it is important to understand emergency medical condition (EMC). In 2013, Florida law makers modified the law regarding PIP requiring that individuals involved in an accident must have an EMC to be entitled to the full $10,000.00 of PIP benefits, otherwise your benefits may be limited to $2,500.00. An EMC is defined by Florida Statute § 627.732 as “a medical condition manifesting itself by acute symptoms of sufficient severity, which may include severe pain, such that the absence of immediate medical attention could reasonably be expected to result in any of the following: (a) Serious jeopardy to patient health, (b) Serious impairment to bodily functions, or (c) Serious dysfunction of any bodily organ or part.”
Seek Guidance From Our Seminole Injury Attorneys
Navigating Florida’s No-Fault Motor Vehicle Law can be confusing, especially after being in an accident, but we here at DeLoach, Hofstra & Cavonis, P.A. are here to help you and your family and friends. When you contact our law firm, you are not responsible for any up front attorney fees or costs. As your case is pursued, our firm will advance the costs which will then be reimbursed to us from the settlement funds at the conclusion of your case. Our attorney fees are also paid from the settlement funds at the conclusion of your case. You owe us no attorney fees and no costs unless there is a recovery.
I hope you found this explanation of Florida no-fault insurance helpful, please call me at 727-568-6693.