What are Medical Payments Coverage and Personal Injury Protection Insurance

Medical payments insurance covers the cost of doctors, hospitals and funeral expenses of you and/or your passengers, that result from an accident, regardless of who is at fault.

This coverage will protect you when you drive another person’s car (with permission) or if you or your family are struck by another vehicle as pedestrians. The coverage is relatively inexpensive and generally available with limits between $1,000 and $100,000. It also provides for funeral expenses, when necessary. The availability varies state by state.

Personal injury protection (PIP) is a form of no-fault insurance required in states with no-fault laws. This coverage is a broader form of medical payments insurance. It pays for medical care, lost wages and replacement services for the injured party (for example, paying for a baby-sitter for children while a mother is hospitalized). It pays regardless of who is at fault in an accident.

States with no-fault laws usually limit the right to sue for non monetary damages such as pain and suffering, but you still may be able to sue in cases of incapacitating disability or death. This coverage varies by state and is sometimes an optional offering in states without no-fault laws. In your evaluation of coverage, remember that Medical Payments and PIP also protects your passengers. If you exceed your medical medical coverage on your auto policy, then Bodily Injury coverage may be needed. Before choosing medical payments or no-fault protection, check with your state’s insurance department for details of no-fault coverage in your state. Then review your other insurance policies. If you already have good medical and disability insurance, you may not need to purchase protection in addition to the minimum limits of your state (if Medical Payments/PIP is a required coverage).

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