PIP stands for Personal Injury Protection Insurance. It is Maryland's version of no-fault liability insurance. The standard PIP policy is two thousand five hundred dollars ($2500.00). These monies are exclusively for reasonable and necessary medical expenses and/or up to 85% of lost wages. Said funds are payable regardless of fault. They are also recoverable for incidents or accidents entering or exiting one's vehicle. The premium savings in waiving PIP are minimal. Conversely, the benefits are irreplaceable. One trip to the ER after an accident may cost more than the PIP minimum. Instead of being out of pocket for these medicals they will be covered under the PIP portion of the policy.
Collateral Source Rule puts PIP monies back in your pocket
Maryland's Collateral Source rule does not allow the at-fault insurance Company to deduct PIP monies in their evaluation of your case. Thus, even if the medicals are paid by PIP in your automobile accident, the medicals remain the responsibility of the at fault party. Therefore, if the bills are paid, the insurance company for the negligent driver must in effect, pay them again. For example, let's say that you have an automobile accident with $2500 in medical bills. PIP pays your bills. If the matter settles for $5000.00, instead of getting only $2500.00 you will receive the full $5000.00, because the medicals have already been paid by PIP.
PIP protects you if you're at-fault.
If you are the cause of the accident, you may still recover your PIP monies. This is important. Suppose a deer runs out into the road or you accidentally rear-end another driver. While Maryland law will bar your recovery versus another driver (or certainly the deer) you may still recover your PIP benefits. This could extinguish medical bills or help you recover lost income while you miss work.
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