Under Florida’s No–Fault Law, all owners or registrants of covered motor vehicles must have insurance that pays medical expenses and wage loss to injured parties without regard to who was responsible for an automobile accident. The no-fault benefits payable under this coverage are called “personal injury protection” (PIP). PIP benefits are payable to the named insured, relatives residing in the same household, persons operating the insured motor vehicle, passengers in the insured motor vehicle, and pedestrians who have been inured by the insured vehicle.
The no-fault insurance law provides that every motor vehicle insurance policy issued in Florida must provide PIP coverage for loss sustained as a result of bodily injury or death arising out of the ownership, maintenance, or use of a motor vehicle. Ordinarily, no-fault coverage provides up to $10,000 of benefits for medical expenses and lost wages.
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Under the No-Fault Law, an injured party’s will lost wages and medical bills, up to the limits of coverage and subject to any deductible, paid by their own or available PIP coverage, not by the at-fault (negligent) driver. The injured person can sue the negligent driver for medical expenses and lost income and earning capacity which are not covered by or exceed available PIP benefits, and for pain, suffering, mental anguish, and inconvenience for serious or permanent injuries.
No-fault coverage is required for any self-propelled vehicle with four or more wheels that is designed for use on the highways of Florida. It is also required for a trailer or semitrailer designed for use with such vehicles. Pickups, panel trucks, vans, campers, and motor home-type vehicles not used primarily for occupational, professional, or business purposes, are also required to have no-fault coverage.
PIP benefits are not available injuries resulting from an accident involving a mobile home or any motor vehicle that is used in mass transit and owned by a municipality or the state. They are also not available for injuries to operators of motorcycles or mopeds.
A person injured in an automobile accident is required to report the accident to the insurance company which provides the PIP coverage without delay. The insurance company will provide the injured party with an application for no-fault benefits. Under the no-fault law, PIP benefits are overdue if not paid within 30 days after the insurer is furnished written notice of the accident and an application for benefits.
If an insurer pays rejects a claim, it must provide an explanation for the rejection with an itemization of each item that the insurer has rejected. If an insured person files a claim for unpaid PIP benefits and is successful, the Court will also award reasonable attorney’s fees in accordance with Florida law.
At the Law Office of Hoffman, Larin & Agnetti in North Miami Beach, FL we have over 30 years of experience representing people injured in motor vehicle accidents. We represent clients throughout Miami area and the surrounding area of South Florida. To schedule a free consultation with an experienced Miami auto accident lawyer, contact our offices today. We handle all injury cases on a contingency fee basis, meaning you will pay us nothing unless and until you are compensated for your injuries.