By: Matthew Tievsky
Personal Injury Protection ("PIP") is a form of insurance that
automatically pays you a set amount of money for medical bills and lost
wages when you are hurt in an automobile accident. You receive PIP regardless
of whether you were at fault for the accident, so it is available immediately.
Additionally, if someone else hurts you and you bring a lawsuit against
the wrongdoer, the amount you are entitled to in court is not affected
by any PIP payments you received separately. In short, PIP is win-win.
Some of our clients express fear that making a PIP claim on their own automobile
insurer will hurt them, however, in the form of raised insurance rates.
Fortunately, in Maryland, this is illegal. Maryland Code, Insurance Article,
19-507(c) expressly holds that your insurer cannot charge you for making
a PIP claim. After all, you've been paying premiums for your PIP protection;
it would be unfair for your insurer to now
additionally charge you for using the benefits you already purchased. PIP really is
a no-lose proposition; you should
always make a PIP claim after your accident, if you have PIP insurance. (And if
you don't, now might be a good time to get it.)
If you need help ensuring you maximize the benefits of your automobile
coverage, after you have suffered an injury in a Maryland automobile accident,
you should contact the car accident lawyers at Chaikin, Sherman, Cammarata
& Siegel, P.C.