What is Personal Injury Protection (PIP) Insurance?
Personal Injury Protection provides coverage for initial treatment after an auto accident. In Utah, the minimum coverage for these costs is $3,000. Utah is a no-fault state. This means that as long as you have auto insurance, PIP coverage is available to you regardless of fault.
Upon seeking medical attention for auto accident injuries, your care provider may not provide information about PIP. However, if you receive treatment from a hospital, personnel will ask for your auto and health insurance information on site. When you seek treatment from your primary care physician, a chiropractor, or pain specialist you’ll need to provide an insurance claim number on their intake forms. By providing this information, your care providers can access PIP insurance to pay for your treatment.
In order to receive a claim number, you’ll need to report the accident to your insurance adjuster. After receiving this number, you’ll need to provide it to the hospital that treated you. The sooner you provide the information to your care providers, the fewer bills you’ll receive in the mail.
To receive PIP benefits, you must fill out a PIP application.
This Application Will Require the Following Information:
- Personal Information
- Insurance Claim Numbers
- Name of Insured
- Care Providers
- Pain and Injury Descriptions
- Accident Details
- Previous Injuries
Also, included in this form is a medical release form and a waiver to sign verifying the truthfulness of your statements.
For the medical release form, you may modify the time period allotted for review. If you do not state the amount of time for your medical release form, your insurance company can view the entirety of your medical history.
Insurance adjusters want to be able to see your full medical history. If they are able to do so, they will search for any previous conditions or injuries that can be tied to your current injuries and pain. By establishing this connection, insurance adjusters can lower your settlement offer and use your previous injuries as justification for a lesser settlement. Thus, it is advised to limit the period of medical records that can be released to your insurance company.
In the case that you have hired a lawyer, your lawyer will complete your PIP insurance application form for you. Your attorney will use the information you have already provided them to complete the form and will limit the viewing period.
As for the application itself, this form will arrive in the mail or via email depending upon your preference. You must get this application through your insurance company. If you have minor injuries, then you’ll likely be able to get your form relatively early.
Be aware that if you sustain severe injuries or have been taken to the hospital for treatment, insurance adjusters will use delaying tactics to postpone payment. By delaying the arrival of your PIP application, insurance companies can put off having to pay for treatment. Also, if you do not actively pursue the furthering of your case, insurance companies can claim that you were inactive in your pursuit of compensation. Concluding that your life wasn’t as affected by the accident you claim and therefore, you don’t need as much compensation for your injuries.
Once PIP insurance claims have been exceeded, you can then use your health insurance for your treatment. However, if your bills exceed your state’s tort threshold limit for medical bills, you may pursue the at-fault driver’s insurance for treatment compensation.