floridas no fault law

March 26, 2021

|Auto Accidents


If you live here in the Sunshine State and you have an active driver's license, chances are you have heard the phrase Florida is a no-fault state. Do you know what that means? Let me explain:

Florida No-Fault simply means if you have been injured in an automobile accident, personal injury protection insurance, also known as PIP, covers medical expenses regardless of who is at fault. PIP helps to pay for medical bills, hospital bills and costs not covered by your health insurance company up to $10,000.00. PIP covers:

80% of all medical bills

60% of lost wages with proof of income and a doctor's note

Essential services where you need to hire someone to assist you in your daily life due to injuries from your accident, like house cleaning, babysitting or lawn care.

80% of prescriptions

Transportation and/or mileage to and from appointments

A separate $5,000 benefit for funeral and burial costs.

PIP is the primary payor and your health insurance, if you have it, is secondary once PIP benefits are exhausted. PIP attaches to the person involved in the accident, so if your non-family passenger has their own operational vehicle, then PIP coverage under their insurance policy would apply. If the passenger(s) does not have their own operational vehicle, they can claim PIP benefits from a resident relative. If the passenger(s) does not have a resident relative, then the person causing the accident would afford PIP benefits to the passenger(s) if they are properly licensed and insured. If the passenger(s) has a resident relative who failed to maintain PIP coverage in violation of Florida law, then PIP does not attach to the host vehicle.

To gain the full PIP benefits of $10,000.00 you must do two things:

A separate $5,000 benefit for funeral and burial costs.

Provide the insurance company with an Emergency Medical Condition Letter, known as an E.M.C. letter. If the above is not accomplished within 14 days of the accident, only $2,500.00 will be available to you. The letter from a medical doctor must state that within a medical degree of probability the symptoms and need for treatment are a direct cause of the accident in question. Further, the patient has an emergency medical condition that requires immediate medical treatment.

A caveat to PIP: Because most policies cover 80% up to $10,000.00 with a deductible, you could still end up owing money to the medical providers. To prevent this from happening, you should also purchase $5,000.00 in medical payments coverage. It is affordable and in addition to PIP coverage and will cover the 20% co-payments and any deductibles you may incur.

Florida requires all licensed drivers to maintain full coverage before registering a vehicle with at least four wheels. Florida drivers must provide proof of Personal Injury Protection Benefits or (P.I.P.). Further, Property Damage Liability (P.D.L.) is also required to complete full coverage, but I will get into what constitutes full coverage compared to what insurance you should carry on my next blog.


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