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What is MedPay, and do I need it?

Understanding the risks of teenage driving
On Behalf of Hoy Law
April 11, 2022

MedPay, or medical payments coverage, is optional insurance coverage drivers can add to their overall car insurance policy. In the event of an accident in South Dakota, MedPay reimburses policy holders for medical expenses up to the policy limit.

Is MedPay the same as PIP?

No. Personal Injury Protection (PIP) and MedPay are similar in that they both cover medical expenses incurred in an accident. However, there are differences.

PIP covers all of the insured’s injury-related costs up to the policy amount, regardless of who is at fault. This includes direct medical expenses such as ambulance costs, ER visits, surgeries and ongoing medical expenses. If your injuries as so severe that you cannot work, or care for your home or children, PIP will cover your lost wages and increased home and childcare expenses.

MedPay also applies regardless of fault, but is less comprehensive than PIP in that it only covers medical costs related to your accident. It does not reimburse accident victims for lost wages or increased home and childcare expenses. However, MedPay offers something that PIP does not: it can reimburse you for health insurance deductibles and copays.

If I have health insurance, do I need MedPay?

It depends. MedPay and health insurance overlap, but can work in tangent to provide you with more complete coverage.

MedPay can work in one of two ways: either as primary or supplementary coverage, depending on your health insurance policy.

If MedPay is considered the primary coverage after an accident, all medical bills are paid through that insurance policy – there are no deductibles or copays. If MedPay is considered a supplement to your health insurance, you can seek reimbursement through MedPay for the deductibles and copays that accompany your health insurance policy.

Coverage in the event of a car accident

It’s also important to note that some health insurance policies do not cover medical expenses sustained in car accidents. In these cases, MedPay would cover all of your medical expenses up to the policy limit. Expenses above your MedPay policy limit would need to be recovered from the other driver. However, this would require you to establish that the other driver was at fault for the accident.

Understanding your insurance policies – and how they work together – is important after an accident. If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident in South Dakota, consider contacting an attorney who can interpret your policies, advocate for you and ensure you get the maximum compensation possible.

Understanding the risks of teenage driving
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