Personal Injury Protection insurance policies, commonly referred to as PIP insurance, is a portion of some insurance policies that protects you and passengers in your vehicle. The policy will cover medical expenses and work loss in the event of an accident no matter who was at fault. Typically, PIP Insurance is recommended for people who frequently have passengers or if you lack a good health insurance plan. However, state law may require it if you live in a “No Fault” state. So, the question needs to be answered, if it is optional, should I get PIP Insurance?
The short answer: most people do not need PIP. There are some situations where having PIP may be a good idea, but for the general population it is not needed. If you frequently drive a carpool, it may be something to consider as it will protect all your passengers as well as yourself no matter who is at fault. Another consideration will be the type of health care you have, but this should only be a factor if your coverage is very poor. Very good healthcare plans will have personal injury covered in the plan as it is. There is also the catch that not all PIP insurance plans are created equal; the range of how much they are willing to pay out will vary greatly based on location and company.
Should I Get PIP Insurance?
PIP insurance could come in handy if you were at fault in an accident and will be losing substantial time from work or have injuries that require additional financial help. However, if you are in a car accident that is not your fault, PIP insurance is not as useful as most times the damages and lost wages are recoverable as it stands. The driver at fault will be liable for the damages that are caused, and if you do not receive enough from the insurance, legal action is always an option. When you file your initial insurance claim, there will be a settlement that will be given to cover medical expenses and damage to your car. In most cases the amount given by the insurance company will not be enough, and in these cases, it is highly recommended you seek legal action to recover losses. Medical expenses as well as lost wages (the two things PIP covers) are recoverable in legal action, making the insurance policy more unnecessary in these cases.
If you carry full coverage insurance, then more than likely you will be fine without needing PIP, and sometimes PIP is already built into certain plans. What frightens most people is the thought of if they are at fault in an accident, they have no options. There are very few situations when a person would really need to carry PIP, just because of overlap with heath insurance and other insurance plans. However, if you do not have good insurance plans, PIP may be something to consider. The protection that is offered for lost wages as well as medical can be very helpful if you cause an accident and are injured in the process.
As stated earlier, some states require PIP insurance, but Arizona is not one of those states.
PIP insurance is not for everyone, and as most things go, will be on a case by case basis. There are certainly situations where it is incredibly helpful, as it will pay out benefits no matter who was at fault in an accident. This can be incredibly helpful if you were at fault and were injured, but it is important to note that PIP will not cover any physical property damages from the accident. For individuals who have heath insurance plans that cover injury in an accident, PIP is not necessary, so really you should evaluate your needs before deciding. If you are in an accident that was not your fault, PIP can be useful if the driver was uninsured or it was a hit and run situation, but these damages can also be recovered by an experienced accident attorney. If you have questions about an insurance policy you are considering or questions concerning accident law, please do not hesitate to contact Petersen Johnson.