Personal Injury Protection (PIP) is an auto insurance coverage that covers medical bills, lost wages, and other expenses that may arise if you’ve been injured in an accident. Also known as no-fault insurance, PIP pays a specified amount of your damages resulting from an accident regardless of who was at fault.
Currently, a number of states require some amount of PIP. Maryland does not require PIP, but insurance companies must offer you the coverage when you purchase auto insurance. If you don’t want PIP coverage, you can reject it in writing by signing a waiver.
How does PIP work?
Your own PIP coverage pays a portion of your medical expenses and lost wages if you’ve been injured in an accident regardless of who was at fault. Typical PIP coverage in Maryland is $2,500, but you can pay for more. PIP claims must be filed within one year of the accident. Payments made under PIP are usually made quickly because no determination on fault needs to be made.
Who is covered by Personal Injury Protection?
The Maryland Insurance Code lists the types of individuals covered by personal injury protection. The list includes:
- Car owner or insured
- Family members who live with the insured
- Individuals who use the insured’s car with permission
- Passengers in the insured’s car
- Any pedestrians injured by the insured’s vehicle
Do I Need Personal Injury Protection?
Yes. PIP is extra money in your pocket if you are injured in an accident. Some people believe that because they have medical insurance, they don’t need PIP to pay these bills. But medical insurance comes with co-pays and deductibles. Personal injury protection does not. PIP also provides you with payment for most of your lost wages, something you can’t get from your health insurance.
Even if the other party is found at fault, it is really beneficial to have personal injury protection. Maryland’s collateral source rule makes it so that an at-fault insurance company can’t take payments you receive from personal injury protection into account when evaluating how much to pay you in your case. Say you’ve exhausted your $2,500 in personal injury protection and the at-fault insurance company determines that you were entitled to $5,000 total for your injuries. You would receive the full $5,000 despite the fact that $2,500 of your medical bills have already been paid.
Contact an Experienced Maryland Personal Injury Attorney
If you’ve been injured in a car accident, it is important to have your case evaluated by an attorney as soon as possible. The experienced attorneys at Alpert Schreyer, LP, are here to help. Contact us online or call us at 1-844-MDCRASH to schedule your free consultation.