Drivers in Texas are typically offered Personal Injury Protection coverage (PIP) or Medical Payments (Med Pay). Depending on what they choose, drivers can easily buy one or the other. In this post, the leading Houston injury lawyer, Dana G. Kirk, explains the difference between PIP and Med Pay.
Think of Med Pay as the health insurance coverage for medical and hospital expenses that a victim is forced to pay due to an automobile accident. Both are very similar; Med Pay coverage is a popular alternative to protection coverage in personal injury cases.
Both Med Pay coverage and PIP coverage should apply to all passengers in the insured driver’s vehicle at the time of the accident. Both coverages will pay even if the crash was partly or fully the fault of the driver. But the owner of the other vehicle involved in the crash, or the insurance company of a third-party defendant will not pay PIP or Med Pay – they will only pay under liability coverage.
Personal Injury Protection Coverage (PIP) vs. Medical Pay Coverage
As a knowledgeable Houston injury lawyer will tell you, there are two main differences between Med Pay and PIP coverage:
- There is no payback provision in PIP. On the other hand, there is a subrogation clause in Med Pay, which mandates repayment when collecting from a 3rd party.
- 80% of lost wages and earnings are covered by the PIP, while Med Pay coverage does not cover lost income.
This is why PIP is a more popular option than Med Pay. While you may need to pay slightly more for PIP coverage, the benefits are immensely greater to Med Pay.
In Texas, generally speaking, the minimum coverage for PIP is $2500. If you have medical health insurance, PIP will be a far better alternative for you. Also, you can stack the benefits of PIP, i.e., a passenger in your car can be covered under the car policy as well as your automobile coverage.
The following costs are covered in PIP coverage in Texas:
- Ambulance costs
- Medical expenses
- Physical rehabilitation and therapy
- Lost wages due to the accident
- Funeral expenses
What Are The Limitations of Med Pay Coverage in Texas?
You are not legally required to get the Med Pay coverage in Texas. Similarly, your insurance company is not required to offer you this coverage. It is more limited than PIP in that sense. Here are some of the most basic limitations associated with Med Pay in Texas:
- It only pays medical expenses within 1 year of the accident
- It does not cover lost wages
- It only compensates you for health insurance deductibles. If you have health insurance, it will co-pay
- It does not cover chiropractic therapy
This is why almost every Houston injury lawyer recommends PIP coverage over Med Pay.
Let a Houston Injury Lawyer Collect Your Med Pay or PIP Coverage
At Kirk Law Firm, our client-focused Houston injury lawyers have found that most insurance companies are likely to attempt to claim undue offsets on a lot of PIP coverage applications. To prevent it from happening to you or your loved one, reach out to Dana G. Kirk for a no-obligation consultation. Send us a message online.