Personal injury protection insurance – a state-by-state guide

Only certain states require this type of coverage

Personal injury protection insurance – a state-by-state guide

Insurance News

By Mark Rosanes

Personal injury protection (PIP) is a component of a car insurance policy that provides coverage for medical and other related expenses resulting from a vehicular accident. It covers the policyholder, the car’s passengers, and anyone driving the vehicle for injuries sustained from a collision, even those who do not carry insurance. Not all states, however, require this type of coverage.

How does personal injury protection insurance work?

PIP is also called “no-fault insurance” in reference to states imposing no-fault auto liability insurance laws, where this kind of coverage is mandatory. In these states, the laws also prohibit injured motorists from suing at-fault drivers for compensation unless the injuries they sustain are severe or their medical expenses have exceeded the state’s minimum requirement to sue.

No-fault laws are an alternative to the tort liability system, which requires the at-fault driver’s insurer to pay out claims resulting from an accident and does not impose limitations on a person’s right to sue.

Apart from no-fault and tort liability laws, there are two more categories of auto liability insurance systems implemented in the US. The choice no-fault system, where motorists can choose between no-fault and tort liability, and add-on insurance laws that work similarly to the no-fault system, requiring claims to be paid out by the policyholder’s insurer even if the other driver caused the accident, although the rules do not place restrictions on the person’s right to sue.

What does personal injury protection insurance cover?

PIP insurance is designed to cover injuries sustained in a vehicular crash, regardless of who caused the accident. Coverage requirements vary from state to state but typically include:

Medical expenses

PIP policies help pay out for the cost of medical treatments – including ambulance services, surgery, hospital stays, nursing, medication and medical supplies, x-rays, rehabilitation, prostheses, dental and optical treatment, and chiropractic services – up to the limits of the coverage. Coverage can extend to the policyholder’s family members and other passengers of the vehicle.

Personal injury protection insurance also covers the policyholder even if the accident happens when they are not behind the wheel. If they get hit by a car while walking or riding a bicycle, for example, they will be covered by this policy.

Lost income

PIP insurance will cover lost wages if the policyholder or others listed in the policy are unable to work because of the injuries sustained from a car accident.

Household services

If the policyholder is not able to perform daily household tasks, including cleaning, yard work, and childcare, because of the accident, personal injury protection policies may provide benefits to help cover the cost associated with these services.

Death benefit

PIP coverage may also provide a death benefit for the policyholder’s family. This payout can be used to cover funeral expenses.

Personal injury protection insurance, however, does not cover damage to the vehicle or other people’s property. It also does not provide a payout for claims resulting from accidents caused intentionally or occurring while the driver is committing a criminal act.

Which states offer personal injury protection insurance?

As of December 2021, twelve US states – Delaware, Florida, Hawaii, Kansas, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, New Jersey, New York, North Dakota, Oregon, and Utah – require PIP coverage, according to credit monitoring agency Wallethub. All these states, except for Delaware, implement a no-fault system. In Pennsylvania, auto insurance laws require drivers to take out $5,000 in medical benefits but do not specifically mention personal injury protection.

PIP policies can also be purchased in seven other states – Arkansas, Kentucky, Maryland, South Dakota, Texas, Virginia, and Washington – and the District of Columbia, although coverage is optional.

The table below from Wallethub provides details of the coverage requirements for each state offering personal injury protection insurance.



Minimum coverage requirement






$15,000 per person

$30,000 per accident

$5,000 for funeral services



$10,000 per person



$10,00 per person



$4,500 per person for medical expenses

$4,500 for rehab expenses

$2,000 funeral expenses

$900 per month for disability/loss of income

$25 per day for in-home expenses



$10,000 per person, per accident






$8,000 per person, per accident


Yes (Opt-out available for some Medicare enrollees as of July 2020)

$250,000 per accident

$50,000 for some Medicaid enrollees



$20,000 for medical expenses

$20,000 for loss of income

New Jersey


$15,000 per person

Up to $250,000 for severe/permanent injury

New York


$50,000 per person

$2,000 death benefit

80% of lost income up to $2,000/month

$25 per day for services

North Dakota    


$30,000 per person



$15,000 per person


Medical benefits required

$5,000 per person, per accident

South Dakota


No minimum coverage requirement



$2,500 per person



$3,000 per person

$1,500 per person funeral expenses

$3,000 death benefit

$250 per week or 85% of lost income (whichever is less)

$20 per day for services




Up to $100 per week for lost wages for up to 12 months, in some cases



$10,000 per accident

Washington D.C.


$50,000 per person

$12,000 per person for lost wages

$4,000 for funeral expenses

Source: Wallethub

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