By Pauline Nassif, Civil Litigation Paralegal
Personal Injury Protection (PIP) benefits is the part of an insurance policy which provides protection against personal injury and related expenses. The PIP benefits are separate from the benefits provide to repair the physical damage to your vehicle or property loss. PIP benefits usually include benefits for medical expenses, loss of work income, and accidental death and funeral expenses.
In Massachusetts, when you’re injured in an auto accident, your insurance policy’s Personal Injury Protection (PIP) coverage should pay your medical bills and other expenses. You may also be entitled to benefits to recover other losses through the PIP portion of your insurance policy. An experienced personal injury attorney could also potentially negotiate a settlement for damages due to your pain, suffering, any permanent disabilities, and lost wages. Massachusetts automobile laws allow victims who suffer injuries to collect additional damages from the legally responsible party if injuries or medical bills meet or exceed PIP tort thresholds.
PIP Tort Threshold
Injuries can have a significant impact on your life and the laws in Massachusetts acknowledge this. The medical bills and lost wages covered by your Personal Injury Protection benefits are not specifically designed to make up for permanent disabilities or other life altering conditions. Massachusetts law gives you the right to sue the person who caused your accident if one of the following occurs.
· Permanent and significant disfigurement
· Broken Bones
· Loss of hearing or sight
· Reasonable and related medical expenses which exceed $2,000.
How an Experience Attorney Can Help
An attorney will determine the facts regarding legal liability for who is responsible for causing your injuries which is critical information before pursuing a liability claim against the other driver. Your attorney will conduct an investigation, which could include police reports, driver’s statements, witness accounts, and other relevant information. Liability for an accident might seem clear to you, but an investigation could prove otherwise.
Before Speaking with the Insurance Company
A brief investigation will be conducted by your insurance company before PIP benefits are released to you. Contacting an experienced personal injury attorney before speaking with the insurance company is vital. Very often the insurance company is trying to gather information that will minimize their financial exposure. An experienced personal injury lawyer will assist in obtaining the maximum amount due to you for your damages.