I Was Hurt In a Car Being Driven by a Drunk Driver. Can I Still Collect PIP Benefits?

Let’s face it, sometimes we get into a car with someone who is driving when they’ve had too much to drink. If that driver then causes an accident and you’re injured, you may be wondering whether your medical bills are going to be paid by that driver’s insurance company.

Typically, Personal Injury Protection (“PIP”) benefits will be paid by the car owner’s insurance company to the driver and anyone else who is injured while occupying that driver’s car. These benefits include accident-related medical bills, 75% of lost wages and replacement services.

Insurance companies don’t have to pay PIP benefits, though, when driving under the influence of alcohol contributed to the injuries suffered by the driver. The good news is that this exclusion only applies to the drunken driver. It does not apply to the injured passengers in the car.

So if you’re a passenger who gets injured in an accident caused by the driver who’s had too much to drink, you can still receive PIP benefits even though the insurance company doesn’t have to pay for the driver’s claims. In addition to a PIP claim, though, you may also have other personal injury claims against that drunken driver.

If you are interested in learning more about PIP benefits in Massachusetts, request a copy of our book, Massachusetts Auto Accidents: The 5 Biggest Mistakes Massachusetts Consumers Make When Buying Auto Insurance.

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