On January 1, 2013, Florida's controversial PIP (Personal Injury Protection) law went into effect. Although newly enacted, controversy already surrounds the new law. The language in the statute is vague, open to interpretation and as a result, will undoubtedly lead to more litigation. Likewise, the coverage for Floridians is significantly reduced yet premiums for the required coverage will likely not be reduced.
The following will highlight the biggest changes in the new PIP law:
-Initial treatment must be obtained within 14 days from the accident
-The initial treatment must be provided by a licensed physician MD or DO, Dentist or Chiropractor or a hospital or facility owned by a hospital
-Benefits are capped at $2500 unless their is a determination that an "emergency medical condition" exist. An emergency medical condition exist when it is determined that the absence of immediate medical attention would be reasonably expected to result in any of the following: serious jeopardy to the patient health; serious impairment to bodily functions; serious dysfunction of any bodily organ or part.
-The Emergency Medical Condition can only be determined by a licensed physician MD or DO, a Dentist, a supervised Physician Assistant or Advanced Registered Nurse Practioner. A chiropractor cannot make this determination.
-Chiropractic care is capped at $2500
-Massage therapy and Accupuncture are no longer reimbursable by PIP and would have to be paid for by the patient either out of pocket or under a Letter of Protection from an attorney.
The above in not a complete summary of the new PIP law, but just highlights some of the biggest (and most controversial) changes. If you have questions about the new PIP law, please feel free to contact Johnson & Gilbert, P.A. at 1-800-556-8890 for a free consultation.