Personal Injury Protection (PIP) insurance covers medical expenses and lost wages for you and any passengers in your vehicle who are injured in an auto accident. It can essentially be thought of as an extension of car insurance that covers the medical expenses and often lost wages no matter who is at fault. That’s right, through your Oregon Personal Injury Protection you will receive the maximum benefits weather you were at fault or not and can even cover expenses like transportation to medical appointments, lawn repair and more!
PIP will also pay for all reasonable and necessary medical expenses, co-pays, out-of-pocket prescription costs, and other similar costs.
Personal Injury Protection Throughout The US
PIP is currently mandatory in 16 states and many states have put personal injury protection laws in place in order to limit the number of lawsuits filed in accidents in order to get compensation for injuries. The personal injury protection laws have freed up the courts in many cases but many still feel that their rights to file a lawsuits have been diminished by the law. Most states have followed with a subsidiary law that allows drivers to bring a lawsuit in certain circumstances.
These circumstances create personal injury protection laws that vary in each state. For instance even what is covered from state to state can vary; such as, acupuncture will qualify as a medical treatment in Utah while not in California.
Personal Injury Protection in Oregon
Some states have PIP and some do not but every auto policy in Oregon has personal injury protection coverage coverage. Under Oregon law, the minimum required coverage is $15,000 for medical expenses for up to one year. In addition, if your injury forces you to miss 14 consecutive days of work, PIP will pay for 70% of your lost income up to $3,000 a month, for up to 52 weeks. The remaining lost income can be recovered from the at-fault party’s insurance at the end of the case.
For more information on Oregon’s Personal Injury Protection Benefits feel free to browse the governments resources here.
Limitations of Personal Injury Protection in Oregon
Filing a claim for PIP coverage and receiving PIP benefits does not prevent a subsequent claim for personal injury arising out of the same collision.
Insurance companies will deny medical bills for treatment it believes is either excessive or not related to the accident. PIP Claimants are sometimes sent to an insurance company doctor for what they call an “Independent Medical Examination.” These doctors are rarely impartial or independent. They will typically write a report saying that your current treatment is not necessary or related to your accident.
When insurance companies cut off your PIP coverage after an “Independent Medical Exam,” there are still several options to have coverage extended. The main option is to demand binding arbitration proceedings against the PIP insurer. At arbitration you can use your own doctors’ testimony to dispute the insurance doctors’ findings. Over the years we have had great success in getting PIP insurance coverage extended through arbitration proceedings. Ryan Hilts is a personal injury lawyer in Lake Oswego and Portland area. For more information, contact Ryan today.