Due to the inefficiency and the obsolete nature of the no-fault insurance system in Florida, many lawmakers are already calling for its abolition. Despite all these, medical practitioners and other healthcare groups are refusing to support the motion.
Besides, any auto insurance policy in Florida must be accompanied by personal injury protection (PIP) benefits which must provide appropriate compensation to the passengers in the vehicle, operators of the insured vehicle, relative residing in the same household, named insured, and those non-occupants of the vehicle that sustained bodily injury (such as pedestrians and bicyclists), as stipulated by F.S. 627.736. But only an experienced Florida injury attorney can help an affected person to win such case.
Regardless of who is at-fault in the auto crash, this often allows for up to $5,000 in death benefits, $2,500 for non-emergency benefits and medical and disability benefits capped at $10,000. However, obtaining bodily injury liability from the insurer of the at-fault driver can only be pursued legally only when an individual died or is severely injured in the crash such as obtained a broken bone, is permanently scarred or lost a major bodily function.
However, this may be changed by the newly amended HD-19 beginning from 2018. Recently, the state house Commerce Committee cleared a proposal calling for the annulment of PIP benefits. Consequentially, motorists will be allowed to directly pursue legal action against defaulted drivers rather than abide by the no-fault laws necessitating PIP coverage.
Supporters of this very motion believe that buying additional coverage for the use of a vehicle is more or less a redundant act for motorists who already possess health insurance. Based on their argument, the PIP system can no longer be sustained as it has long been affected by fraud and high costs. They estimate that about $1 billion can be saved annually once no-fault car insurance is removed.
Health practitioners, on the other hand, oppose the measure. Apart from the fact that the PIP coverage contributes significantly to their income package, crash victims can always benefit from emergency care regardless of who is at-fault despite their insurance status. So the PIP system cannot be ousted as it is critical to the healthcare industry. Removing it can lead to an outrageous increase in health care costs.
Supporters of this new bill are refuting the inclusion of “med pay” requirements are it would absorb most motorist savings. While the Senate version of the bill failed to gain traction, substantial support (81-29) was accorded to a nearly identical bill that passed the Florida House last year.
If you or someone you care about has recently been injured in an auto accident, don’t hesitate to find a reputable Florida injury attorney as you may be liable for monetary compensation and other benefits.