PIP claimants are increasingly being represented by legal counsel, according to a new study released by the Insurance Research Council (“IRC”) titled Attorney Involvement in Auto Injury Claims.
In 2012, the study notes that 36 percent of auto injury PIP claimants nationwide were represented by attorneys, compared to 31 percent in 2007. For bodily injury claims, representation rose slightly to 50 percent.
Compared to claimants without legal representation, PIP claimants with attorneys were found to have a greater likelihood of the following behavior:
- Sought more treatment in a pain clinic, including MRIs
- Experienced longer waiting times for claim payments
- Collected lower net payments
- Involved in alleged fraudulent claims
Historical trends from 1977 to the present are outlined in the IRC chart below.
Attorney involvement was also measured by state. Florida ranked at the top of the list, with more than 50% of claimants represented. Kansas, where 12% of PIP claimants are represented, was the lowest ranking state.
Data is drawn from 12 participating insurers and 35,000 auto injury claims closed with payment under the five principal passenger coverage areas, according to survey sponsors.
Click on the link to read more about the Attorney Involvement in Auto Injury Claims study.