How long it takes to get your personal injury protection (PIP) check depends on how long it takes your insurer to receive, investigate, and accept your claim. If your case is very complex, it may take longer for you to get your check than for someone whose case is straightforward.
A Florida car accident lawyer can help you file your claim and deal with insurance companies who try to delay or deny your claim for no reason.
The Insurer Decides If You Get a PIP Check
In theory, your personal injury protection coverage will reimburse you for any injuries you sustain in a car accident, regardless of who caused the crash. In some states, this coverage is optional. In others, as Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FLHSMV) explains, it is mandatory.
Investigating Your Personal Injury Protection Claim
Since there is no average car accident settlement, it is up to insurance adjusters to carefully assess every case and come to a fair conclusion. This process involves:
- Interviewing everyone involved in the accident, including you
- Visiting the accident scene
- Taking or finding photos and video footage of the accident, the vehicles, or your injuries
- Requesting evidence from many different sources, including the police
- Sitting down to examine all of the collected evidence and to create the most precise possible picture of how the accident happened
How long it takes to get your PIP check depends on how quickly the adjuster can move through each step.
Causes for Delays in Issuing a PIP Check
If it seems like the insurer is taking a while to send you a check, there may be any number of reasons for this:
- There is a lot of evidence, and the insurer needs more time than usual to examine it all.
- Your case is unusually complex (e.g., there is more than one liable party), so more time is required to assign fault and decide who should pay what to whom.
- Part or all of your claim has been lost or misplaced.
- The insurer is deliberately holding up your claim. They sometimes use this tactic to discourage claimants and get people like you to accept less money than you deserve.
The first two scenarios listed above are legitimate reasons for a claim to take longer. The last two are not. A personal injury attorney can help no matter the cause of your delayed check.
How Long Is Too Long When Waiting for a PIP Check?
It is hard to be patient when you are depending on your PIP check to pay for the things you need. While it is important to recognize that the insurer needs time to process your claim, you should expect reasonably prompt service and responses to your inquiries.
If you suspect that your insurer is taking longer than they should to resolve your case, here are some steps you can take to safeguard your interests:
- Hire a car accident lawyer: If you have not already done so, it may be time to start researching personal injury law firms in your area. Look for firms that have handled car accident cases before, are happy to answer your questions, and make you feel safe and welcome.
- Let your lawyer talk to the insurer: Insurance company representatives may try to push you into actions you are not comfortable with, or that may compromise your rights. By allowing your attorney to serve as a “middleman,” you protect yourself against such tactics.
- Preserve as much evidence as possible: The more evidence you have to support your claim, the harder it may be for the insurer to justify delaying your PIP check. Your lawyer can help you collect and preserve materials like photos, bills, letters, pay stubs, and medical records.
Other Insurance Policies You Could Get a Check From
In addition to seeking a PIP check, you could recover accident compensation in the following ways. You may find figuring out how many of these options apply to you is confusing, but a personal injury attorney can review your case and help you decide what to do.
Filing a Claim With Your UIM Insurer
Uninsured/underinsured motorist protection is a policy that will help cover your damages if the driver who hit you cannot be found or does not carry the amount of insurance mandated by your state.
UIM coverage is especially important in states like Florida, where the uninsured motorist rate is, according to FLHSMV, as high as 6.49 percent.
Filing a Lawsuit Against the Liable Party
PIP should pay out no matter who caused the accident, but what happens if you were injured by another party’s negligent behavior? You have the right to hold them accountable by filing a claim and/or a lawsuit against them.
A liable party’s insurer may be just as reluctant to pay compensation as yours is. It is a good idea to consult with a car accident attorney before taking action. That way, you know what to expect and can get professional help building and fighting a case.
Suing Your Insurer for a Delayed PIP Check
Your insurance policy guarantees you fair compensation if you qualify for it. If the insurer fails to live up to this guarantee, you have the option of suing your insurance company.
Insurers are large organizations, so it can be daunting for you to take them on alone. It is your legal representative’s job to make this process less stressful for you, so feel free to ask them questions or seek advice at any time.
We Can Help You Ask for a PIP Check
Ged Lawyers is here to assist Floridians who want help recovering compensation and are wondering how long it should take to get their PIP check. Whether you have yet to file a claim or have already been denied by your insurer, we want to hear from you. Call today for a free case evaluation.