380 SW 2nd Street Newport, Oregon 97365
“No-Fault” PIP
Understanding Oregon’s “No-Fault” PIP Insurance

By law, every automobile insurance policy sold in Oregon must include no-fault “personal injury protection” (PIP) coverage.

The purpose of PIP coverage is to ensure that persons injured in automobile collisions have insurance to pay for medical treatment and lost wages incurred as a result of the collision, no matter who was at-fault for causing the crash.

PIP benefits are generally provided by your own insurance company, not the insurance company of the other vehicle in the collision

How does PIP work?

PIP provides primary medical expense and lost wage benefits to insureds without regard to who caused the collision.

This means that even if another driver runs into you and the collision is 100% their fault, your own insurance company is initially responsible for paying your medical bills incurred as a result of the collision.  This often comes as a surprise to people, many of whom are hesitant to open a claim with their insurer when the collision wasn’t their fault.

On the other hand, it also means that if you were injured by an uninsured or hit and run driver, you have coverage for medical expenses and lost wages.  It also means that you don’t have to pay your own medical bills while insurance companies decide who was at-fault in your collision.

What benefits are provided through PIP?
PIP benefits includE:
  • Payment for reasonably and necessary medical expenses incurred as a result of collision;
  • Payment of 70% of your lost wages, subject to the following:
    • In order to qualify for wage loss benefits, the injured person must be unable to return to work for fourteen consecutive days;
    • You must get a doctor’s note excusing you from work due to your injuries;
  • In death cases, payment for funeral, burial and/or cremation services.
Who is covered by PIP?
  • The driver and passengers in an insured automobile;
  • A person injured in an automobile collision that is a named insured under an automobile insurance policy, even if that person was injured while walking, biking, or occupying another person’s automobile;
  • A relative of a named insured under an automobile insurance policy who resides with the named insured, even if the relative has their own automobile insurance;
  • A pedestrian injured by an insured automobile, but only if no other PIP, medical, or disability insurance is available to the injured pedestrian.
Are PIP benefits unlimited?

No, PIP benefits are limited under the policy.  Oregon law provides that the minimum limits for a PIP policy are $15,000 for medical expenses, and $3,000 per week for lost wages, for a maximum of 52 weeks.  PIP medical expense benefits only cover treatment received within 2 years of the collision.  These are the minimum limits; an insurance policy can provide larger limits, but not less.

If multiple PIP policies apply to an injured person, those policies can be “stacked” to provide additional coverage if benefits under the primary policy are exhausted.

Does this mean the person who hit me avoids responsibility?

No.  If another party is at-fault for the collision, the PIP insurer will seek reimbursement from the at-fault party.  The PIP insurer must decide between seeking reimbursement for the benefits it paid directly from the at-fault party and his/her insurer or claiming a lien against any recovery you receive from the at-fault party.  In my experience, PIP insurers nearly always elect to seek reimbursement directly from the at-fault party and their insurance company.

Additionally, the at-fault party and their insurer are responsible for paying all non-economic damages (i.e. pain, suffering, inconvenience, interference with activities of daily living and enjoyment of life) and medical expenses and lost wages that were not covered by PIP.  This is where having an experienced injury lawyer working for you makes the biggest difference.

Questions about PIP coverage or other aspects of your injury case?

Give us a call today to discuss your case and the role no-fault insurance may play.  Let us be the guiding light through the legal fog created by your collision.  All personal injury consultations are free and there is never a fee unless we recover money for you.

Post Author
Adam Springer
Attorney - Principle

Adam excels at representing injured Oregonians and their families against insurance companies and corporations that only care about their bottom line.

Learn More.