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No Fault Repeal Moves Forward in Senate

January 10th, 2018 by Jake Stofan
Florida’s No Fault Auto Insurance Law is riddled with fraud, and the fraud has led to higher insurance rates.
Lawmakers are looking to replace No Fault with a new system.
Christine Rodriguez was the victim of 3 separate car accidents. None were her fault.
“And two of the drivers that hit me only had the minimum state required PIP benefit. So that did me no good with my medical expenses,” said Rodriguez.
Afterwards, Christine was unable to work, while her insurance rates skyrocketed.
“So I lost my career, I’m now in an office and I no longer travel,” said Rodriguez.
She blames the state’s No Fault insurance law. It only requires drivers carry $10,000 of Personal Injury Protection, or PIP.
The last time PIP insurance requirements were raised was 1979.
Adjusting for inflation, the $10,000 of coverage then equates to about $1,500 now.
During a three year period, PIP was blamed for nearly 4,000 instances of fraud. A bill clearing a Senate Committee Wednesday replaces No Fault with a Mandatory Bodily Injury, or BI, coverage system. Dale Swope, a lawyer for the Florida Justice Association says it would protect people like Christine.
“This imposes the cost of an auto crash on the person that caused it. Innocent people don’t have their rates go up for accidents that they didn’t cause,” said Swope.
Lobbyist for State Farm, Mark Delegal says whether motorists will save money will depend on where they live and how much coverage they carry.
“The issue of cost, I think, is the key question and it depends on who you are and where you live. I would imagine everybody who is in this room is going to benefit from getting rid of PIP and going to BI, because we all carry the pretty much full compliment of coverages,” said Delegal.
Sponsor State Senator Tom Lee says bodily injury coverage will provide three times as much coverage per dollar than no fault.
“There’s a lot more bang for your buck in the Mandatory BI world than in there is currently in the PIP insurance,” said Lee.
Currently Florida is ranked the state with the fifth highest auto insurance rates in the nation.
The House version of the bill is coming up for a vote on the chamber floor Thursday.

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