UPDATED: Aug 7, 2020
It’s all about you. We want to help you make the right coverage choices.
Advertiser Disclosure: We strive to help you make confident insurance decisions. Comparison shopping should be easy. We partner with top insurance providers. This doesn’t influence our content. Our opinions are our own.
Editorial Guidelines: We are a free online resource for anyone interested in learning more about auto insurance. Our goal is to be an objective, third-party resource for everything auto insurance related. We update our site regularly, and all content is reviewed by auto insurance experts.
What is personal injury protection on an auto policy?
Auto insurance personal injury protection coverage protects against medical expenses (costs associated with treating injuries to your person). In some states, you are legally required to carry this type of coverage on your auto policy. In other states, however, it is only one of your auto insurance coverage options.
Beyond your medical costs, Personal Injury Protection coverage (or PIP for short) might also help pay for lost wages, childcare expenses, or funeral costs in the event of a serious accident.
If you are considering adding PIP coverage, use our FREE auto insurance comparison tool above to compare rates.
How Does Personal Injury Protection Coverage Work?
One good thing about PIP coverage is that it pays out on relevant claims quickly and efficiently regardless of who is at fault. You won’t have to wait for your insurance provider to decide culpability and/or have to take anyone to court to get the money you are owed – your claim will pay out regardless. Even if it turns out that the other driver is at fault, proving their culpability and collecting the funds from the other driver (and/or the other driver’s insurance company) will be your provider’s headache, not yours!
But the drawback is that PIP limits are usually very low (around $10,000 or less). And that might seem like a lot of money, but if you are involved in a serious accident, cannot work, and have young children to look after, your post-accident expenses can mount into the tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars before you know it.
Personal Injury Protection coverage also has some benefits that health insurance doesn’t when it comes to accidents. Your health insurance plan usually only covers you and any children or legal dependents who are also on your policy. PIP, on the other hand, insures you and also may insure the following:
- Blood Relatives
- Foster or Step-Children
While this is relatively standard in all policies, it is important to review your own policy carefully and be familiar with the details.
What’s the difference between personal injury protection and bodily injury insurance coverage?
Personal injury protection auto insurance applies to those inside your car, while bodily injury auto insurance coverage applies to injuries to others outside your car.
Personal Injury Protection Coverage and Associated Costs
How much is it? Generally, the majority of your insurance premium comes from collision and comprehensive and other facets of insurance. PIP isn’t the most expensive form of insurance, but it isn’t exactly dirt cheap either.