Differences Between PIP And Bodily Injury

Updated on June 19, 2020

We are all familiar with the various types of insurance available, from health insurance to auto insurance, to homeowners’ insurance, and more. They all serve the same purpose, which is to provide you with a safety net should things go bad. In some cases, insurance is actually required by law rather than simply being a convenient option to have when you need it.

With so many different kinds of insurance available, it can be hard to know which type of insurance is applicable in certain situations and the difference between personal injury protection (PIP) and bodily injury insurance is one such case. They are both very important but there are various differences between the two, and you need to know what those differences are so that you will know what to do should the situation arise where they may be applicable. 

If it turns out that you do need PIP or bodily injury insurance, then you will likely need a personal injury attorney as well. In addition to your insurance, a personal injury lawyer can help you to recover the compensation you deserve no matter the nature of your case.

What is PIP Insurance?

This type of insurance covers any medical bills, repair bills, and other damages you receive after a car accident. It does not matter whether the accident was your fault or not, PIP insurance will take care of many of the expenses caused by said accident. If someone else was injured in the accident as well, then your PIP insurance also covers their medical bills; that someone else could be a passenger, another driver, or a pedestrian.

PIP insurance will also cover you if a victim of the crash files a lawsuit against you, so you will not have to pay any legal fees out of pocket. PIP insurance is optional in most states but is mandatory in other states, such as Florida. Regardless of whether PIP is optional or mandatory, it does not replace standard auto insurance.

What is Bodily Injury Insurance?

Bodily injury coverage, aka bodily injury liability pays for the damages and injuries to others if you were at fault for a car accident; those others include pedestrians, cyclists, other drivers, and passengers. It also protects you should the other party file a lawsuit against you. However, bodily injury coverage does not pay for your injuries or damages, which is the main way in which it differs from PIP. However, bodily injury liability is similar to PIP in that it is mandatory in some states and optional in others. 

Bodily injury coverage is required in states like Nevada, but in Florida it is optional, with one exception. If someone has been convicted of a DUI (driving under the influence) in Florida, then they are required to have bodily insurance liability. According to Florida Statute 324.023, anyone who has been found guilty of, or plead guilty to a DUI needs to have bodily injury liability for three years after their driving privileges have been restored. If they are incident-free for those three years, then they do not have to continue with the bodily injury coverage.

Learn Which Type of Coverage You Have and How it Applies to You

PIP and bodily injury coverage have some similarities but ultimately they are both different to each other. To sum it up, PIP covers any injuries and damages you received in the car accident whether or not the accident was your fault, but it also covers the damages suffered by others if you were at fault. Bodily injury only covers injuries and damages others receive if you were at fault for the accident. 

The differences are clear enough that you should know which one applies in a given situation. What is more important is knowing whether either one is mandatory in your state so that you will be ready should a situation arise where the required insurance type is needed. If you are in a situation where PIP or bodily injury coverage, or both are required, then you should contact a personal injury attorney to get the help that you need.

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