What is PIP (Personal Injury Protection Coverage) and how does it work in Maryland?

  • Q.        What is Personal Injury Protection (PIP)?
  • A.         Personal Injury Protection is a type of coverage under one’s automobile insurance coverage that pays for the medical bills, loss of income and other expenses, like copays and deductibles that is incurred as a result of injuries suffered from an auto accident.  It is coverage that one pays for as part of the premium for auto insurance in Maryland.

 

  • Q.        Who gets covered under the Personal Injury Protection coverage?
  • A.         First of all,  it is also called “no fault” insurance because the PIP insurance covers the medical bills and other expenses of the person covered regardless of whether they caused the accident or not.  There are several different types of people that can benefit from the PIP coverage: The person who is named as the insured under the insurance policy, passengers in the insured’s vehicle, family members who live in the household of the insured, persons with permission to use the vehicle involved in the accident and pedestrians who are injured by the insured’s vehicle. 

 

  • Q.        Is everyone required to purchase PIP coverage on auto insurance policies?
  • A.         Although Maryland accident law does not require PIP coverage on automobile policies, insurance companies have to offer PIP coverage when you buy auto insurance and you have to reject it or waive it by signing a document saying that you are rejecting it.

 

  • Q.        How much of my medical bills and expenses are covered under PIP?
  • A.         The amount of expenses that will be covered will be dependent on the coverage you purchase in Maryland.  Basic PIP coverage in Maryland is $2500.00, but one can elect to purchase a higher amount of coverage.    

 

  • Q.        How does PIP coverage benefit one involved in an auto accident if the other side is already going to pay for the injuries?
  • A.         Under the collateral source rule, the law in Maryland allows for one to recover not only from the other insurance company but your insurance company as well.     For example, if you have $5,000 total in medical bills and lost wages, and you have $5,000 in PIP benefits, your own insurance company will cover the medical bills.  You can then collect from the other insurance company for the same medical bills and lost wages in addition to money for your pain and suffering.

 

  • Q.        Is there a time limitation to filing for the PIP benefits?
  • A.         In Maryland, one has to file a PIP claim within a year of the date of the accident or one may not be able to get those benefits. If our office handles the case, we will not charge an additional fee to file the PIP application on behalf of the client and help ensure that the claims are processed by the insurance company.
Justin P. Katz
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Justin Katz is a personal injury lawyer who represents injury victims in Maryland, Virginia and Washington DC