It's that time of year again: Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hanukkah, and Open Enrollment for the Affordable Care Act! Well, I'm not going to open that can of worms, but I am going to discuss how you may want to adjust your auto insurance due to changes in the hospitalization market.
There is an optional coverage on your policy called Medical Payments. Medical payments coverage will reimburse you, your family member, and/or any one in your covered car for the medical bills sustained while either riding in, exiting, or entering your vehicle. Essentially, if someone gets hurt in your car the insurance company will reimburse you for bills. This is regardless of who is at fault; whether you run into Santa’s sleigh or he sideswipes you—it doesn't matter.
Don't confuse this with your Liability insurance. Liability will cover medical expenses to the other party in the event of your negligence.
The question is, "do I need Med Pay?" Years ago I would tell people that it was nice to have, but if you had good health insurance you might not really need it. Today is a different market and a different story. This is the ACA part: in the last couple of years, low deductible hospitalization plans have basically disappeared. Therefore, an inexpensive addition of Medical Payments on your auto policy is shifting towards a “need to have.”
Even if your injuries are the other person's fault, it might be months before your claim is settled and many individual health insurance plans have $5,000 through $10,000 deductibles. The upside? The cost for Med Pay coverage is minimal as long as you have a good record. For example, a two car policy might only be $35 a year for $5,000 in coverage. (This coverage can be added mid-term, but of course it cannot be added and applied to a previous accident.)
As always, I'm talking about North Carolina and if you would like more information give us a call!