Personal Injury Blog

What is Personal Injury Protection, and How Does it Affect My Auto Accident Lawsuit in Maryland?

Personal Injury Protection

By: Matthew Tievsky

In Maryland, automobile insurers offer a form of insurance called "personal injury protection," or PIP. You have the option of purchasing PIP when you obtain your automobile insurance policy, and you have the option of how much you want to purchase. Put simply, after an auto accident, PIP automatically pays you money to satisfy your medical bills and lost wages, up to the amount of coverage that you purchased ahead of time. PIP gets paid out to you whether or not the auto accident was your fault. This means you get your PIP before you ever sue another driver and win in court – or even if the accident was your own fault.

Assuming the accident was caused by another driver, PIP has another added advantage. You can sue the other driver and obtain money for your medical bills, lost wages, and other losses, and still keep your PIP. Maryland law is very specific about this. Let's say you are hit by another driver and incur $2,500 in medical bills. First your PIP will pay you $2,500 (if you had a PIP policy to begin with). Then you can sue the other driver and, if all goes well, obtain compensation for both your medical bills and your pain in suffering. Your recovery in the lawsuit is not affected by your PIP payments, and after you win your lawsuit, you still keep your PIP payments. Thus PIP provides an extra layer of coverage for your losses after an auto accident.

If you have any questions about how a lawsuit will affect your auto insurance, or vice versa, you should contact a Maryland personal injury attorney at Chaikin, Sherman, Cammarata & Siegel, P.C.