It looks like no-fault car accident insurance in Florida may soon become a thing of the past. Versions of a bill to repeal mandatory no-fault, or personal injury protection (PIP) car insurance have been advancing in Tallahassee. Legislators are likely to repeal the PIP law in 2018.
Florida is only one of a handful of states that requires all drivers to carry no-fault insurance. It’s designed to pay an injured accident victim’s medical bills to a certain amount, regardless of who caused an accident. Before PIP coverage, car accident injury victims had to wait until insurance companies decided who was at fault. Only then would they find out if anyone would be helping with their medical bills. Under the law, a driver’s own insurance company automatically covers the medical bills for car accident injuries.
Insurance companies have been fighting the legislation since it began in the 1970’s. Their chances of success have increased for a number of reasons. For one thing, the bill originally required $10,000 minimum coverage and that hasn’t changed. Today average emergency room costs, including bills for CT scans, MRI’s, X-rays and lab tests for car accident injuries is over $15,000. Also, legislators are under pressure to reduce rising car insurance rates.
Collision of the Lobbyists
Various lobbying groups are battling it out over how to replace the PIP law. Florida hospital groups are pretty happy with the way things are. Insurance companies, on the other hand, would rather not pay any claims at all. Personal injury lawyers, of course, are coming down firmly on both sides. Car accident attorneys that specialize in PIP cases are generally happy with the status quo. Others favor one of the proposed bodily injury protection laws that would require drivers to carry a minimum of $20,000 (or $40,000, depending on which version of the bill) of liability protection.
If you or a loved one is injured in a car accident, contact the Orlando car accident attorneys at Martinez Manglardi. Whatever the insurance companies come up with, our top-rated personal injury lawyers are ready. We can help you recover your losses. Call 407-846-2240 for a free consultation.