Personal Injury Protection (PIP), Medical Payments Insurance

P.I.P, or Personal Injury Protection/Medical Payments, insurance coverage is not well known or well publicized.  This type of insurance coverage can play a crucial role if you or someone you love is involved in an automobile wreck.  The most advantageous element of this coverage is the "no-fault" aspect. 

  • S.C. Code Ann. § 38-77-144 indicates that PIP coverage is not mandated but if an insurer sells no-fault insurance coverage which provides personal injury protection, medical payment coverage, or economic loss coverage, the coverage shall not be assigned or subrogated and is not subject to a setoff.
  • What does all this mean?  Insurance is just that- insuring against a potential risk.  As I mentioned in my "Full Coverage" article, you get what you pay for. 
  • PIP is optional insurance coverage and is relatively inexpensive.
  • PIP covers you and the other occupants in your car that have your permission to be there. 
  • If you cause the wreck, you still have coverage. 
  • If you did not cause the wreck, you still have coverage IN ADDITION to any personal injury claims that may arise.

G.I. Joe always helped information sink in when they parted by stating,"Knowing is half the battle!"

Tell your insurance agent you want PIP/Medical Payments coverage on your insurance policy-today.

DISCLAIMER: I do not get kickbacks from insurance agents! However, if you have been injured, I can not go after coverage that you never had to begin with!

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South Carolina Injury Law Journal - December 19, 2008 2:27 AM
M.P. McQueen of "The Wall Street Journal" reports that: More drivers are letting their car insurance lapse because of the sour economy, putting themselves and others at risk........ Ms. McQueen quoted Robert Hartwig, president of the Insuranc...
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Jason Hash, Claim Adjuster - January 13, 2009 10:28 AM

My insured was a pedestrian in S.C. when he was struck by a vehicle.

My insured is a MD resident and has full pip coverage under his MD policy. The vehicle has a S.C. policy. It is unclear the S.C. policy carries PIP or Med Pay coverage at all.

Assuming it does, which policy is primary for this S.C. loss? Would the insurance follow the striking vehicle under the S.C. PIP/Med Pay coverage? -Or, would the insured's MD policy's PIP coverage be primary?

Can both coverages be stacked in this state?


Yes, assuming SC policy has PIP it is primary then your insured's own policy can be utilized.

(There is one wrinkle but it could adversely affect your insured so I won't mention it. I work for people not insurance companies and if he can get your benefits then I want him to).

Eileen Madden - August 10, 2011 8:30 AM

MVA happened in SC. My insured is a MD resident and his vehicle is registered in MD. He had a passenger with him that is a PA resident and owns a vehicle that is registered and insued in PA. Who would be primary to pay the passenger's medical bills. Our MD PIP or her PA First party?


You do understand I hate insurance companies? Send me the normal retainer fee you pay your defense attorneys and I will answer.



Brendan - August 23, 2016 5:38 PM

I was recently hit by another driver and was just confused about one point. I have usaa and am covered by pip. I had a passer in my vehicle. Does the limit under my pip involve all of our medical expenses etc or do we each get the same cap individually?


PIP is contractual so you would need to look at your specific policy. However, most times it is separate claims for anyone in the vehicle that is covered with PIP up to the paid limits, ie up to $1,000/$5k/$10k/$25k per person per incident.

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