2) I was hit while a pedestrian or bicyclist. Who pays my medical bills?
Many people are pleasantly surprised to learn that, in addition to covering auto crash injuries, Oregon’s no fault auto medical coverage (known as ‘personal injury protection” or “PIP’) also covers pedestrian and bicycle injury medical costs.
Pedestrians with PIP coverage injured in a traffic accident, should notify their own auto insurer of the pedestrian traffic accident and then instruct medical providers to bill to that PIP claim number. If the injured pedestrian or bicyclist has neither auto insurance nor health insurance, PIP insurance for the driver at fault applies. In that situation, the injured person should fax the insurer for the driver at fault to request a PIP claim number be assigned.
Once PIP limits are exhausted or expire, the injured pedestrian or bicyclist should fax evidence that no more PIP coverage exists to the her health insurance company instructing the health insurer to pay all further accident related medical charges. If the injured pedestrian or bicyclist does not have auto insurance or purchased auto insurance in a state where PIP is not required, the injured person should fax all medical bills to his or her health insurer for processing.
DANGER: The insurer for the driver at fault is motivated to limit liability. When that same insurer provides PIP coverage, it’s relatively easy for it to power play an injured person via their early access to medical information.
TIP: It’s generally not a good idea for unrepresented persons to speak with representatives of the insurance company for the driver at fault–the opposing insurer is motivated to minimize damages and undermine fault. Get an attorney’s help to deal with the adjuster for the party at fault. Remember, opposing adjusters are potential witnesses who could later testify against you.