PIP/No-Fault Laws of Florida
In reviewing a file today a few issues came up that I want to remind everyone. The PIP/No-Fault Laws of Florida contain several limitations that make it more challenging for anyone injured in a car accident to get the treatment they need. First – you MUST get evaluated by a medical professional within fourteen (14) days of your accident or you get NO benefits under your PIP/No-Fault coverage. What does that mean? That means you cannot access the $10,000.00 you are required by law to carry to cover 80% of your medical bills and 60% of your lost wages. What are your options? Pay cash or hope you have met your deductible/out of pocket on your health insurance. So even if you are stiff and sore and hope it will go away – GET EVALUATED – because what if it does not go away?
Second – presuming you did get evaluated within those fourteen days, you also must be diagnosed by either a medical doctor, nurse practitioner, or dentist with an emergency medical condition or you are limited to just $2,500.00 of the $10,000.00 in benefits you are required to carry. The emergency medical condition diagnosis does not necessarily have to happen within that 14 day window, but it still has to happen.
The other relatively recent change is that PIP/No-Fault will no longer cover massage or acupuncture treatments. I think this is a real shame because these conservative modalities often provide my clients a great deal of relief. Fortunately we have practitioners here in town that do amazing work for reasonable rates, so even though you have to pay out of pocket, you can usually afford to get the treatment you need.
If you are ever involved in an automobile accident please seek legal guidance. Consultations with me are always free. The laws do not favor the injured party, so you need to take every step you can to protect yourself.
Our friends from the north are streaming in for the winter – there are more cars on the road. Please be safe out there!!!
Donna DeMarchi, Associate Crary Buchanan