Personal Injury Protection (PIP) is a type of no-fault insurance required for drivers by Florida law. As a no-fault state, Florida requires drivers to purchase a minimum of $10,000 in Personal Injury Protection coverage. The state does not have insurance requirements for liability coverage like at-fault states.
After an auto accident, you file a claim with your PIP insurance provider, even if the other driver was at fault for the cause of the car accident. You can only sue the other driver for damages if you sustain serious injuries.
How Does PIP Coverage Work After a Fort Walton Beach Car Accident?
PIP insurance covers some of your financial losses after a car crash. However, it does not cover all your losses from a car accident. PIP mainly covers medical expenses and lost wages after a car wreck.
PIP Medical Payments Coverage
PIP covers up to 80% of your medical bills from a car accident up to your PIP limits. However, when filing a PIP claim for medical bills, there are a few things you should know:
- You must see a doctor for medical treatment within 14 days of your car accident for no-fault coverage to apply
- Medical treatment can be provided by a physician, hospital, emergency medical personnel, chiropractor, or dentist
- You may receive PIP payments without owning a car if you live with a spouse or blood relative who owns a motor vehicle covered by PIP insurance
- PIP medical benefits are limited to $2,500 unless you sustain an emergency medical condition
Even though PIP insurance is no-fault insurance coverage, it does not guarantee payment after a car accident. There could be circumstances and factors that could complicate a PIP claim. Call us to talk to a lawyer if you have questions or problems with a PIP claim.
Filing a PIP Claim for Loss of Income
PIP also covers loss of income after a car accident. If you cannot work, you can receive up to 60% of your lost wages in PIP benefits. However, the benefits are paid with medical bills and are subject to policy limits.
Insurance companies require proof that you cannot work because of accident injuries. Therefore, you need medical evidence to prove that your car accident injuries prevented you from performing your job.
Other Benefits Paid by PIP Insurance
PIP also pays up to $5,000 in death benefits for insured drivers who die from injuries sustained in a car crash. It can also pay a portion of the cost of paying someone to clean your home if your injuries prevent you from performing the tasks.
Suing the Other Driver After a Car Accident in Fort Walton Beach
Even though Florida is a no-fault state, you might be able to sue the driver who caused your car accident if you sustained serious injuries. Serious injuries are defined by Florida statute as:
- Permanent injury within a reasonable degree of medical certainty
- Significant and permanent disfigurement or scarring
- Loss of an important bodily function that is significant and permanent
Many states require drivers to have liability insurance coverage. Liability coverage pays accident victims for damages caused by the insured driver. Even though Florida does not require liability insurance, many drivers choose to pay for the coverage to protect themselves from liability for car crashes they cause.
You have the burden of proving that another party was responsible for causing your car accident. You must have evidence proving breach of duty, causation, and fault. You must also show that you sustained damages because of the other driver’s negligence.
If you establish liability for a car accident, you could receive much more compensation than you can receive for a PIP claim.
Compensation for Car Accidents When You Sue the Other Driver
The damages you can receive by suing the other driver include economic damages. You could receive reimbursement for all monetary losses caused by the car crash, including:
- Medical bills
- Personal care
- Lost wages
- Nursing care
- Out-of-pocket expenses
- Diminished earning capacity
You can also recover compensation for your “pain and suffering” damages or non-economic damages. These damages compensate you for physical pain and emotional distress. You may also receive compensation for permanent impairments, disfigurement, decreased quality of life, and mental anguish.
The amount you recover for a personal injury claim depends on the facts of the case. It is always best to seek immediate medical attention after a car accident. Also, talking with a car accident lawyer as soon as possible can help you determine all sources of compensation for damages you might pursue.
Contact Our Office for a Free Consultation With a Fort Walton Beach Car Accident Lawyer
You could be entitled to additional compensation in addition to what PIP covers. Call us to schedule a free case evaluation with a Fort Walton Beach personal injury attorney.