What is Personal Injury Protection Coverage?
Personal Injury Protection, or “PIP,” is one of the most underrated auto insurance coverages you can buy. PIP is a very inexpensive coverage that can be used to help with your medical bills and lost earnings when you are hurt in a car accident, even if the accident was your fault.
One of the most important features of PIP coverage is that it requires your insurance company to pay you promptly – that is, within 30 days after your insurance company receives satisfactory proof of your claim. This can be extremely beneficial and stress-reducing, since most people don’t plan to face medical expenses and lost earnings as a result of a car wreck.
Having some peace of mind that these bills will get paid can allow you to better focus on your recovery, without the worry about how you’re going to pay for the medical care you might be facing on the road ahead.
What are some of the benefits of Personal Injury Protection Coverage?
PIP coverage also has some other helpful features. First, it follows you wherever you go. So, if you get hit by a car while you are a pedestrian or bicyclist, your PIP coverage can still be used for those unexpected costs. This is also true if you’re hurt while you are a passenger in a car, whether yours or someone else’s.
Second, you can use your PIP even if the accident was caused by someone else. In that situation, PIP allows you to legally double-dip; that is, you can seek payment from your own PIP coverage, and also seek payment from the at-fault driver’s liability insurance. The other driver’s insurance doesn’t get credit for what your own insurance company has paid.
Finally, even if you get paid from your PIP coverage, you don’t have to pay that money back, even if you get paid from another driver’s insurance policy. This is another way you can use your PIP coverage to “double dip” and put a little extra money in your pocket.
How much Personal Injury Protection Coverage Should I Buy?
PIP is usually sold in fairly small amounts – most people carry about $2,500 in PIP coverage. However, most auto insurance companies will sell PIP policies up to $10,000, and some insurance companies will sell much larger PIP policies, up to $100,000.
Because of the relatively low costs of PIP coverage, we recommend our family and friends buy as much coverage as their auto insurance company will sell. In some situations, the ability to “double dip” with PIP coverage can result in a significant monetary benefit to clients who understand how to properly utilize their coverage.
Regardless of how much PIP coverage you buy, it is wise to take the time to understand the types and amounts of auto insurance coverage you have. While it is easy to hope you never have to use it, being properly covered can make a huge difference in the outcome of your case if you are. Contact us today to learn more about this important coverage.