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House retreats (some) on PIP

The House agreed to tack several amendments onto legislation that reforms the no-fault auto insurance system, an indication that the two chambers are moving toward common ground on the subject.

The amendments approved for HB 119 Thursday would increase the window people injured in an auto accident have to receive initial treatment from 72 hours to seven days. Members also removed a cap on lawyer fees in class action lawsuits.

The House is expected to debate two more amendments Friday before voting on the legislation. One amendment would add chiropractors to the list of medical professionals that can perform follow-up treatments under personal injury protection, or PIP, coverage. The other amendment would require drivers to carry increased bodily injury liability coverage.

Meanwhile, the Senate’s PIP reform legislation, SB 1860, is ready for floor action.

After both chambers pass their versions of PIP reform, leaders from each side will come together to iron out a compromise. The main point of contention will likely be caps on attorney fees.

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