Understanding the Changes on Florida PIP Auto Insurance

In line with the governor’s goal to crack down on auto insurance fraud, the state of Florida instituted reforms on its no-fault insurance commonly known as PIP (Personal Injury Protection). This post will provide basic understanding about the important changes on the reformed PIP law.

The Sunshine State still offers the $10,000 PIP coverage which will provide immediate assistance to the policyholder in the event of an accident, to cover for medical expenses, partial wage loss, and some out of pocket expenses that would be necessary following the accident. However, not knowing the changes instituted on the Florida PIP law might deny a policyholder for the said benefits. So, here are the things that each Florida auto insurance policyholder must know about the new PIP law:

• Once injured, the policyholder must seek medical treatment not later than 14 days. Failure to do so will default the PIP coverage.
• Though the medical treatment was availed within the 14-day time window, the PIP beneficiary must be diagnose by the medical provider to be in a “emergency medical condition (EMC)” before the beneficiary will be able to avail of the full $10,000 PIP coverage, otherwise, the beneficiary can only use the partial $2,500 coverage. Emergency medical condition is defined as that when the patient’s health is in serious jeopardy, that there is impairment to his or her bodily functions, or that there is a serious dysfunction on any of his or her body parts or organs.
• Chiropractors are not among the medical providers that can classify a patient to be in a “emergency medical condition.” The new PIP law requires a list of medical providers that can only designate the EMC status.
• Massage therapy are not anymore covered by Florida’s PIP coverage even so if it is being prescribed by the medical provider.
• Your insurance company may not pay for the treatment of your injuries if the severity of injuries was not recognize during the medical treatment, even so if the doctor will attribute such to the injuries you incurred during the accident.

Additional information on the Florida PIP changes can be found by reading the bill, HB-119, through the Florida Senate website.