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Your Ability to Get PIP Payments for Lost Wages, and Short Term Disability

Arm injuryIn Delaware and Pennsylvania, you can purchase PIP (personal injury protection) coverage through your automobile policy. If you are injured in a motor vehicle accident, you can recover for lost wages under your PIP policy. But what if you already have short term disability coverage from your employer? Can you recover from both sources at the same time? The answer—sometimes yes and sometimes no. In certain situations, you are eligible to receive lost wage benefits through your insurance company under the PIP coverage on your auto policy, and simultaneously receive short term disability through an employer-sponsored plan. But there are some restrictions.

In Delaware, if you pay any part of the premium for your short term disability insurance, you are eligible to receive both PIP and short term disability payments. If, however, the short term disability is fully funded or paid for by your employer, any recovery under a PIP policy will prevent you from recovering under the short term disability policy. However, if the short term disability only pays 40% of your wages, you can go after your own insurance company for an additional 40%. PIP pays 80% of your gross pay. It is considered to be net of taxes.

Don’t be surprised if your employer or the disability insurance company delay or try to deny your claim. This is fairly typical with any insurance company, in any situation. Often, they will examine your medical records or require you to visit a doctor of their choosing, and will contend that you are not hurt enough to be out of work. If that happens, you need go to your doctor and request that your doctor write a strong letter reflecting why you should not be working.

It’s also important to remember that, if you file suit for damages after a motor vehicle accident, any money you receive will be offset by the amount you received in disability payments. This is pursuant to a “subrogation” right that the disability insurer has, which essentially says that they have a right to reimbursement of any benefits they paid you if you recover compensation through legal action.

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To arrange a free initial consultation, contact us online or call our office at (302) 777-1000. Evening and weekend meetings can be arranged upon request. We will come to your home or the hospital, if necessary.

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