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A year after Florida passes Personal Injury Protection “reform” and the debate rages on

Personal Injury law

In May 2012 we posted a blog about the passage into law of HB 119, the so-called Personal Injury Protection (PIP) reform bill that was going to lower your no-fault insurance rates by 25% (see Florida Passes Personal Injury Protection (PIP) Reform: A Boon for Consumers or a Curse for Injured Drivers and Passengers?).

Since then, parts of the law have been ruled unconstitutional, and some legislators are debating whether to continue with PIP at all. Recall that along with the supposed premium reduction, PIP benefits were largely reduced as well. Under the 2012 PIP Act, the $10,000 in benefits previously available is now only provided for medical emergencies, and other treatment is limited to $2,500.

Certain types of treatment, such as massage therapy and acupuncture, were excluded altogether (see New Florida Law Rubs Massage Therapists the Wrong Way, posted April 15, 2013). These provisions are currently being litigated in court, and a temporary injunction is currently in place prohibiting those provisions from taking effect for the time being.

Are we better off without no-fault?

In his decision granting the temporary injunction, the judge questioned whether Florida should have no-fault insurance at all, or whether a better alternative is to require liability insurance and allow access to the courts when a car accident is the fault of a negligent driver. Some legislators have taken up the cry and have brought the debate into the Senate Banking and Insurance Committee, which recently voted unanimously in favor of submitting a bill that would require drivers to carry liability insurance rather than no-fault.

Whether Florida moves to liability or stays with no-fault insurance, getting compensation for your injuries after a car accident is still a complicated legal process, and help from an experienced auto accident attorney is still critical to getting all of the compensation you deserve. In Palm Beach, North Palm Beach, and Port St. Lucie, contact Fetterman & Associates for assistance.

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