The revised PIP bill passed in May 2012 contains changes that will affect motorists beginning after July 1, 2012. Following are the changes which every driver in Florida should be aware of.
New Medical Benefits Restrictions and Limitations
- “14 Days – Use it or Lose it” – revised PIP coverage requires accident victims to obtain medical treatment within 14 days of the accident or there is no coverage for any medical benefits. Initial services and care may only be provided by a hospital facility or emergency transport, or by an M.D., D.O., D.C., or D.D.S.
- Medical Coverage Limited to $2500 unless “Emergency Medical Condition” – Revised PIP coverage only pays up to $2,500 in medical benefits unless there is an emergency medical condition. An emergency medical condition is defined as a condition manifesting itself by acute symptoms of sufficient severity, which may include severe pain in which the absence of immediate medical attention could result in serious jeopardy to a patient’s health, serious impairment to bodily functions, or serious dysfunction of any bodily organ or part.
- Medical Coverage Limited to Initial Injury Diagnosis – Revised PIP coverage limits follow-up care for the $2,500 in coverage to medical treatment consistent with the initial diagnosis. For example, if the initial injury is a concussion, follow-up care would be limited to treatment consistent with a concussion and low back treatment would not be covered.
- Massage and Acupuncture No Longer Covered – Revised PIP coverage no longer pays any sum of money for massage or acupuncture therapies.
- Current and revised PIP provides a $5,000 death benefit when a person is killed as the result of a motor vehicle accident.
- The revised PIP allows payment of the death benefit plus available medical benefits. If an accident victim dies as the result of a motor vehicle accident and incurs medical bills for an emergency medical condition prior to the death, there is $10,000 available to pay the medical benefits and an additional $5,000 death benefit.
After July 1, 2012, mandatory PIP insurance of $10,000 will pay $7,500 less than it is required to pay now for most medical claims. This legislation will drastically reduce medical claims coverage to injured accident victims. If you or a family member have been involved in an auto accident, you only have 14 days to seek help. Call me immediately for a free case evaluation and for guidance in dealing with the new No-Fault Law.