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Rick Scott: Make PIP insurance coverage optional

Drivers should be able to choose whether they want personal injury protection as part of their auto insurance, Gov. Rick Scott told a Miami Spanish-language radio station Friday morning.

“We’ve got to pass a law that allows citizens the choice of what type of automobile insurance coverage they want,” Scott said on En Caliente (In the Heat), the popular morning show on WAQI-AM (710).

His response came to a question from co-host Ninoska Pérez-Castellón about what the state can do to lower auto insurance fraud, namely staged car accidents. Fraud would go down if drivers weren’t required to purchase policies with medical claims coverage, Scott said.

The state  requires drivers to carry $10,000 worth of insurance so accident injuries are covered regardless of which driver causes the accident.

"If we allow the person who's going to buy the insurance to decide whether they want that insurance or not, then people won't buy it because that's too expensive and they don't need it," Scott said.

--PATRICIA MAZZEI AND JANET ZINK

Comments

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Florida Driver

This is nuts. Most people will drive without insurance. If this happens who will pay the hospital bills?? It will force everyone to sue whoever caused the accident just to get the medical bills paid. Now my taxes will go up to pay the hospitals and my health insurance will go up. I pay $6.00 a month for pip insurance. It is well worth it. Gov Scott you are not thinking clearly about this.

Richard Parillo III

Scott ran on the promise of more jobs. If this insurance was not mandatory then tens of thousands agents, small insurance companies, their staff and vendors will go out of business. Plus, it will really hurt some medical offices.

Bad move Scott. Think before you speak please.

JP

Insurance will still be required (BI and PD, bodily injury and property damage), just not PIP (personal injury protection)

Robert

Rick Scott wants to eliminate something that helps Floridians. Who will pay for the emergency room bills for the uninsured? Or should we let them bleed in the streets?

I, for one, want to be able to get medical care after I have a car accident.

MatheusII

What is the Governor thinking about? If you bust your unfaithful wife making love on the sofa of your living room with another guy, Do you throw away the sofa to solve the problem? C'mon Governor, we must fight efectively against the insurance frauds and create laws on that regard.

Alberto Naon

It is obvious that many of the comments disagreeing with the Governor are from individuals who are most probably involved in milking Florida drivers of their hard-earned money. Florida insurance carriers paid over one billion dollars on PIP during 2010 and over 90% was not to hospitals or MDs. We are paying more than $400/year because of this fraud. Is time to put and end to this.

Tom from Iowa

Why not have the best of both worlds ... make PIP an optional coverage. Those who want it can pay for it. Drivers with medical and health insurance elsewhere will probably decide not to purchase it. Each consumer should make their choice based upon their own situation.

Guru

That would require a change in the law, and the Legislature will never do that. All the lawyers who scam, doctors who overbill, and hospitals who see PIP as free money would all have to take a haircut and clean up their unsavory practices. Fat chance. The doctors circle the wagons when their own go under fire. They defended Alan Mendelson for 10 years.

The Legislature couldnt even pass a PIP fraud bill this year. Pitiful.

Skeletor Scott

Funny how people think their health insurance will cover injuries from an accident...do you think your health ins will skyrocket? Of course. Be careful for what you wish

Who is going to pay for the hospital bills when people are driving without PIP? Our gov needs to stop sniffing glue

LEE PARKER

ARE YOU STUPID OR BLIND. THE CROOKS WILL STILL PURCHASE P.I.P. AND GO TO THE CROOKED CLINICS. SOME CLINICS AND ATTORNEYS WILL EVEN ADVANCE THEM THE MONEY TO BUY THE COVERAGE, BEFORE THE STAGED CRASH.
YOU HAD A CHANCE TO PUT A HOLD ON THE FRAUD, BUT LOOKS LIKE THE KICK BACKS FROM THE CLINICS AND ATTORNEYS KILLED THE BILLS IN TALLASSEE EARLIER THIS YEAR.

driver

Hmm so my auto insurance will go down but my health insurance will definitely go up. My BC/BS policy went up 100% in 3 years, what would it go to if they had to pay for car injuries...FORGET IT

Chris

States with tort systems and no PIP have loads of lawsuits clogging up the court system. Not only is the coverage worth it for the cost, but it's worth it minimize suits for minor injury claims.

Stan

Colorada eliminated PIP a few years ago. Insurance rates went down and lawsuits did as well. In Florida most of the money paid out on PIP claims goes to attorneys and runners, not to help injured people get better.

FL resident

CO and most states cannot compare to FL drivers...way to many accidents here. No PIP=increased healthcare ins and increased taxes. Whoever thinks their health ins and taxes wont go up is not being realistic.

LSJ

If PIP becomes optional, then BI must be mandatory. Folks, BI is NOT mandatory in FL. Currently, only PIP and PD are mandatory. It's an option that needs to be discussed as a possible solution but not the only solution.

Matchoo

PIP is a loser everywhere it is used. There are many reasons, but most of them are caused or exacerbated by the fact that health insurer have many more cost control tools available to them than auto insurers do. Why do you think accident fraud is almost always against auto insurers and not health insurers?

Small claims are almost always paid by the insurer or settled and rarely go to court, even in states without PIP.

kelly

I agree something has to be done,, with the fraud part of all this,, BUT i do not agree to eliminate pip because it does help people get their treatment after a car accident. Iam a massage therapist that works for a chiropractor,, an WE DO help people, i beg to differ,, I see injured people every day an I see a result with them when they do have treatment. So you see its not just our jobs on the line,,it is the people like you an me that do have pip to help when they are injured. people need to stop saying that we are all out for free money,,the few bad apples that are doing that are hurting us...take care of the fraud, not the people that actually are doing their job an helping.

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