What You Need to Know About Personal Injury Protection (PIP) in Pennsylvania
If you are in a motor vehicle accident in Pennsylvania, you may have to rely on your auto insurance Personal Injury Protection (PIP) to make up your economic losses. Pennsylvania requires drivers to carry at least $5,000 in this type of coverage. But this might not be enough to get you through an injury accident, especially if you don’t have a good health insurance policy through work.
In many instances, if you are injured in an auto accident, you will file a claim with your own insurance company for your:
- Medical expenses — You can claim all costs related to reasonable and necessary care for your injuries, including ambulance services, medical and surgical treatment, hospital stays, nursing, medication, medical supplies, x-rays and diagnostic testing, rehabilitation, prostheses, dental care, optical treatment and chiropractic services.
- Lost income — If you are unable to work due to your injuries, PIP helps you recover some of those lost earnings. Self-employed individuals can make claims through PIP also.
In the event of a fatal accident, PIP covers funeral and burial expenses and will pay benefits to surviving dependents.
After your losses reach the limits of your policy, you can file a claim against the at-fault driver. However, you might soon learn:
- The at-fault driver has only the minimum level of insurance, $15,000.
- The at-fault driver has no insurance.
If the driver has inadequate insurance to cover your remaining losses, you must rely on your own uninsured or underinsured driver coverage, if you have it. You might also have auto medical payments (AMP) insurance, known as MedPay, as part of your policy. However, this is optional, so if you didn’t consciously decide to purchase this coverage, you’re going to be out of luck.
If you have exhausted your own policy and still can’t meet all your losses, you can sue the at-fault driver to see if there are sufficient assets, such as a home, car, or business, you can attach to compel payment.
The easiest way to avoid such complications is to buy as much insurance as you can afford. However, trying to collect on a huge claim will soon put you in an adversarial relationship with your insurance company, and you might be surprised to find you’re treated more like a third party than a loyal customer.
For these many reasons, it is a good idea to retain an experienced auto accident attorney as soon as possible. In western Pennsylvania, Rudberg Law Offices, LLC can help you get the compensation you deserve. Call 412-488-6000 or contact our Pittsburgh office online to schedule a free consultation.