Orlando Car Accident Victims Benefit From PIP Court Battle

Recovering the highest awards for Orlando car accident clients requires teamwork and dedication. Our proven track record provides peace of mind. This year we have battled more insurance company efforts to deny benefits.

When injured in a car accident, Florida auto insurance should provide immediate and definite benefits to assist with medical and hospital bills and lost wages. However, this year the insurance industry convinced the Florida legislature to reduce PIP (personal injury protection) benefits for those involved in motor vehicle collisions without any guarantee of increased savings to Floridians. Appropriately, Leon County Circuit Judge Terry Lewis ruled on March 20, 2013, that the law illegally prevents accident patients from using PIP claims to pay for treatment by acupuncturists, chiropractors and massage therapists. He also found that the law’s lower limit on how much will be paid for non-emergency medical care to be unfair to policy holders.

Gov. Rick Scott and state Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater championed the law as a means to reduce auto insurance fraud. Scott signed the law in May 2012, with key provisions going into effect on Jan. 1, 2013. On its face, the law makes Florida car owners buy $10,000 of coverage, even though the insurance company will likely be permitted to deny benefits after only $2,500. As Orlando car accident attorneys, we find that terribly unfair.

Judge Lewis wrote on April 17 that he issued the injunction against an automatic stay by the state to “prevent the potential harm to citizens injured in automobile accidents who, under the present PIP statute, may not receive necessary medical care.”

That decision had been appealed to the First District Court of Appeal. Supporters of new law want the injunction removed so the provisions can be enforced. Nonetheless, the 1st District Court of Appeal found Judge Lewis’ action appropriate and therefore the injunction that keeps the state from imposing bad parts of the 2012 PIP law remains in place. Of course, the battle over motor vehicle insurance continues and the Florida Supreme Court will likely decide the issue. So, we will wait to see whether the insurance industry will ultimately be permitted to deprive people of the benefits they paid for.

As Orlando car accident lawyers, we applaud Judge Lewis’ decisions and the action of the appeals court to prevent injustice to Florida consumers. However, the Florida legislature should consider mandatory bodily injury coverage again next year. Only by requiring all car owners to obtain insurance coverage will those innocent victims of car accidents have some degree of protection. Too many times our clients are hurt by car owners and drivers without any bodily injury coverage. If our clients have no uninsured motorist coverage on their own policy, there will be no insurance available to compensate them for permanent injury and suffering.

If you are injured and need help, let us instantly send you the Florida Accident Book. Within just seconds you will receive your FREE copy. You deserve to be treated fairly and to get your bills paid promptly. Do not accept less from the insurance company. Get the inside information you need now!

Posted in Car Accidents


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