What is PIP Insurance Coverage?

February 12th, 2013 - Carmichael Clark

PIP stands for Personal Injury Protection and it is coverage available on automobile insurance policies. PIP is no-fault insurance coverage for medical and other expenses, such as wage loss, loss of service benefits (payment to others for work you cannot do) and funeral expenses, which result from an automobile accident. It is a form of health insurance and coverage is triggered by an automobile accident.

PIP coverage generally applies to the driver and passengers in the insured vehicle and does not provide coverage to the individuals in other vehicles involved in an accident.  It does, however, provide coverage for pedestrians when accidentally struck by an insured auto.     

With regard to medical expenses, Washington State, PIP coverage provides the minimum benefits of up to $10,000 for reasonable and necessary medical expenses for covered individuals injured in an auto accident. This benefit is typically available for up to three years from the date of the accident. The dollar limit can be higher (up to $35,000), depending upon the level of coverage sought by the insured.

Washington State Law requires that PIP coverage be offered with regard to all automobile policies, and this coverage must be included within a policy unless specifically declined by the insured in writing.  RCW 4.22.085.

Insurance policy language evolves and can be different from policy to policy. The policy language is what determines the coverage available so always review the insurance policy to determine what is or is not covered.


-Jolyn Hunt, Attorney

Disclaimer: This article and blog are intended to inform the reader of general legal principles applicable to the subject area. They are not intended to provide legal advice regarding specific problems or circumstances. Readers should consult with competent counsel with regard to specific situations.

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