Personal Injury Protection
If you have an automobile policy but got hurt as a pedestrian, you are eligible for Personal Injury Protection or “PIP” coverage under your policy. The minimum PIP benefits required in Oregon include up to $15,000.00 in reasonable and necessary medical expenses for a period of two years, and 70 percent of lost income up to $3,000 per month for an aggregate of 52 weeks.
An injured pedestrian’s own motor vehicle PIP insurance, if any, will provide the first layer of PIP coverage. All other collateral benefits, including health insurance and any applicable government benefits (such as Medicare) must be exhausted next. Excess PIP, which are those benefits available under the driver’s automobile policy, provide the last layer of coverage. PIP benefits “stack,” which means that the injured pedestrian can receive the benefits from both primary and excess PIP.
Uninsured and Underinsured Motorist Coverage
When a pedestrian is injured by a driver, the pedestrian may make a claim against the driver that is covered by the driver’s automobile liability insurance policy. When that driver does not have insurance (or does not have enough insurance to fully compensate the pedestrian for their injuries), the pedestrian can make a claim against his or her own automobile policy for uninsured or underinsured motorist benefits. In essence, the pedestrian’s own insurance company “steps into the shoes” of the at-fault driver. Unlike PIP, UM/UIM coverage is fault based, so the pedestrian must prove that the driver is legally responsible for the pedestrian’s injuries.