If you’re like most people, the last thing you want to worry about is a car crash. However, it’s a concern worth preparing for: on average, most of us will find ourselves in an accident once every 17.9 years.
You may have heard of “PIP” or “MedPay” as optional insurance policies—but what is personal injury protection coverage, and how can it help you when you need it most? Let’s take a look at why these policies are worth considering.
While it’s safe to say that the majority of these incidents will be minor scrapes and fender benders, it’s always a good idea to prepare for the worst. If you or someone else needs medical attention after a crash, supplemental insurance can make all the difference. Our Sumter personal injury lawyers explain.
What is a Personal Injury Protection (PIP) Policy?
Before we dive into the details, let’s take a look at the basic personal injury protection (PIP) definition. Also called “no-fault insurance,” this type of policy helps cover medical expenses no matter who caused a car accident.
Personal injury protection coverage is available in 21 states and Washington, D.C., though the policies of each state will differ.
What Does Personal Injury Protection Cover?
As mentioned above, PIP helps cover medical expenses. However, it’s worth noting that the scope of these policies goes beyond immediate medical bills as well.
What PIP Always Covers
PIP will always cover your immediate medical expenses, from surgical bills to dental treatment. It can also cover medications and medical supplies.
What PIP Sometimes Covers
In certain cases, PIP can help you recover lost wages if you find yourself unable to work due to injuries received in a crash. This, of course, is in addition to filing a workers’ comp claim.
In addition, it can help pay for substitute services if your injuries keep you from performing specific tasks, such as the upkeep of your home or caring for your children. In cases like these, PIP can help you pay for child care or cleaning services.
PIP will also cover funeral costs if a car accident, or the injuries received during a car accident, lead to death.
What PIP Does Not Cover
This type of insurance policy will not cover expenses that are unrelated to bodily injury after a crash. In other words, you’ll still need to take out additional car insurance policies as required by state law.
In South Carolina, this includes liability coverage to pay for bodily injury and property damage if you’re found at fault for an accident. You may also want to take out collision coverage or comprehensive coverage to protect your vehicle as well.
Is Personal Injury Protection Insurance Required By Law in South Carolina?
PIP is not always required by law. Different states have different auto insurance legislation, which is why it’s always important to do your research before you drive, especially if you plan to travel across states.
Because PIP can help simplify the process of determining which driver is at fault, several states require this type of insurance.
South Carolina, however, is what’s known as an “at-fault” state. This means that in the event of a collision, at least one driver will be found to be “at fault” for the incident.
As a result, PIP is not required by law in the state of South Carolina. Instead, you’ll find insurance companies offering a related type of optional coverage called Medical Payments Coverage, or MedPay.
This coverage option is technically different from PIP, but these policies are similar in many ways. MedPay, for example, can help pay for your medical bills even if you are responsible for a car accident.
What are the PIP Limits in S. Carolina?
The limits of your personal injury protection car insurance will depend on the policy you choose. Remember, of course, that these policies will have a per-person maximum. This means that if multiple people are injured, the coverage will still be limited to a specific amount for each injured party.
Do You Really Need Optional Insurance Policies Like MedPay or PIP?
If you are considering extra coverage, it can be hard to tell whether or not PIP is a policy worth adding. However, there are a few key benefits to consider as you make your choice.
First, PIP and MedPay offer coverage no matter who’s at fault, which can mean greater peace of mind for you as a driver.
Second, these optional forms of insurance often pay out faster than traditional insurance options. This can make all the difference if you’re in a situation where you need to pay bills quickly.
In addition, it’s always worth considering supplemental policies that can help cover anything your health insurance policy won’t. In certain situations, MedPay or PIP may help you cover co-pays and deductibles that you would have paid for out of pocket.
Get the Protection You Need After a Car Accident
Now that you’ve stopped wondering, “What is personal injury protection coverage, anyway?” it’s time to take action.
If you’ve ever been hurt in an accident, you know how stressful and frustrating the aftermath can be. The right optional coverage policies, from PIP to MedPay, can help you get back on the road to recovery faster than you could on your own. Weigh your insurance needs and decide if the extra peace of mind is worth the cost.
Don’t forget that if the worst should happen, the Lexington personal injury lawyers at Burriss Law is here to help as well. Our team is here to provide care beyond your case and get you the compensation you deserve to get your life back on track.
If you need a personal injury lawyer in South Carolina, call for a free and confidential case review.
We’ll put our 50 years of experience to work for you if you have been seriously injured and your injuries are someone else’s fault.