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Firm Updates

What is PIP?

 

You may have heard a radio jingle hinting that if you have been involved in an automobile collision, you may be eligible for up to $10,000 in PIP benefits.  Does that mean you get $10,000 in your pocket if you are involved in an accident?  As you probably know, if it sounds too good to be true, it probably isn’t.  In this case, the old adage is right – money doesn’t grow on trees.  So what is PIP?

PIP is mandatory automobile coverage in Florida.  It stands for personal injury protection benefits.  It is designed to help pay for your medical bills, lost wages, and funeral expenses related to an automobile accident.

The typical scenario would be where you are driving home from work, and you are rear-ended by the person behind you (who was probably texting).  You’re full of adrenaline and emotion at the scene, and you feel fine.  The next day, you start to feel sore.  You take some ibuprofen and hope for the best, but it gets worse.  Rather than put it off, you try to make an appointment to go see a doctor that week.  Chances are, your primary care doctor won’t see you because he doesn’t take “accident cases.”  You reach out to friends to find out what medical provider can help you.  When you finally see a doctor, he prescribes diagnostic testing and physical therapy.

But who pays for all those medical services?  PIP!  The insurance company is required by law to pay for 80% of all reasonable and necessary medical services related to the accident, up to a limit of $10,000.  Of course, there is some fine print that can’t be covered here.  For instance, you must receive medical care within 14 days of the accident, and you may be responsible for paying a portion of that $10,000, but that’s the gist of it.  If you would like to really dig into the Florida Statute, you can read all 9000 plus words of it here.

You may have also heard of no-fault insurance.  This is the same as PIP.  All it means is that you are entitled to these benefits even if you were at fault in the motor vehicle accident.  Or put another way, it doesn’t matter who was at fault, anyone involved in a car accident should always be eligible for PIP benefits.  That means you are eligible for PIP benefits even if you were the at fault driver texting in the example above.

An automobile accident is the typical scenario.  But what most people don’t know is that it covers a lot more than just that.  It covers injury, sickness, disease or death arising from the ownership, maintenance or use of a motor vehicle.  You don’t have to be even be driving a car.  You could be maintaining it.  Maintenance of a car could be anything from changing a tire to replacing the engine.  If someone is injured doing maintenance, they are entitled to PIP coverage.  You could be using your car’s windows and accidentally injure your finger or hand.  That should be covered as well.  You get the idea.

At Snedaker Law, we have the experience to deal with PIP and any other motor vehicle accident issues.  We assist patients and medical providers recover benefits when an insurance company fails to properly pay a claim, and can assist you if you are involved in a personal injury incident.

Firm Updates

Snedaker Law Sponsors Lake Mary Little League

Take me out to the ball game! Snedaker Law is proud to announce that it will be a yearly sponsor of Lake Mary Little League.

Being a business owner it is sometimes difficult to decide which organizations, events, campaigns, etc. to sponsor.  It is impossible to sponsor all local organizations as there are an abundance of charitable organizations that all really make dramatic difference in the community and individual lives.  So how do you pick which one to sponsor?  The best advice I was given with respect to which organizations to invest in are the ones that you enjoy, believe in, and want to be apart of.  Little league is one of those organizations for me.  I enjoy it, I believe in it, and I enjoy being apart of its great organization.

Growing up, you could find me most weekends at Eisenhower Park participating in Arcadia’s Little League.  From t-ball to baseball to softball, I spent most of my youth participating in little league.  It molded me.  Some of my greatest memories – good and bad – as a child took place on the field or in the dugout.  I remember hitting my first home run and feeling on top of the world.  I remember being the only girl on the boy’s baseball team and the challenges that came with being the best player on that all-boy team. I remember having feelings of inadequacy, insecurity, arrogance, confidence, and joy all during the same game.  After all, baseball and softball are, in my opinion, 90% mental.  I remember the teams, the coaches, and the players who contributed to the person I am today.  I never even thought about playing at the collegiate level, and frankly, was probably not good enough to even think about it.  But without those highs and lows and experiences that only a team sport can provide, I probably wouldn’t have learned how to deal with the real life lessons that sports teaches you.  It teaches you how to deal with conflict, how to work as a team, how to build someone else up when they feel like they aren’t good enough, how to be humble when you are the best player, how to work hard, how to keep fighting even when it feels like you aren’t good enough, how to praise others when they excel, and most importantly,  how to believe in yourself.

These life lessons have always stayed with me.  However, I probably did not appreciate how much of an impact little league had on molding me until I started watching my children and their peers develop themselves in sports and in little league.  As a parent, I have watched from the bleachers – so nervous for my daughter and how she may react if she strikes out.  I have cheered them on when they made that first throw from third base to first and got the out.  I have watched them stand on the mound and held my breath with each pitch worried that they may break down if they hit another player.  I have watched them struggle with their competitiveness.  I have seen firsthand the mental challenges they have faced when they feel like they are not good enough.  These experiences are shaping them as individuals.  They are learning how to deal with conflict, how to work with their teammates, how to build someone else up, how to be humble, how to keep fighting, how to work hard, how to praise others, and most importantly…they are learning how to believe in themselves. These lessons that they are learning, all stem from the experiences they have had and/or are having at little league.

Sponsoring Lake Mary Little League was an easy choice for me. I believe in it, I enjoy it, and I will continue to be apart of it.  Opening Day is next Saturday, September 14, 2019. You can find me sitting in the bleachers, playing walk up songs for a bunch of seven-year olds as they take the field together for the first time.  I am also proud to see my firm’s banner in the outfield supporting an organization that is shaping Lake Mary’s youth.

Firm Updates

Firm Divided

It was a firm-divided sort of weekend.  Although we enjoy practicing law, Tim Snedaker and myself are huge football fans; especially when it comes to college football.  Unfortunately, we are not only fans of different teams, but we are fans of teams in different conferences.  Tim, an alumnus of University of Miami, only roots for the Miami Hurricanes.  I am an alumnus of the University of Florida – Go Gators!  This year’s football season enabled us with the unique opportunity of playing each other. Nothing like starting the football season off with our two teams not only playing each other, but also the opening college football game and the only game in college football playing on that day! This division extended into our families as well, including a division among the kids, the spouses, and in-laws.  This division made for some interesting dinner conversations especially in the week leading up to the game.

The day finally arrived.  It was game day.  The start of college football! We all had decided we wanted to tailgate, and Tim so graciously decided to set up the tailgate with my husband (also a Canes fan…unfortunately).  When us Gators arrived to the tailgate, a Canes tent was popped up, Canes chairs ready for seating and a Canes table prepped and ready for some pre-game Dominoes.  We also were able to find the tailgate easily due to the obnoxious Canes flag blowing in the wind marking the territory.  My husband, who purchased me a Gator flag, told me he was unable to locate the Gator flag prior to the tailgate, so that meant the only Gator markings at the tailgate were the ones on our own backs.  Being the Gator I am, I decided to focus my attention to the game and away from the clearly marked Canes tailgate.  I decided it was best to just focus on the Gator victory that was approaching.  We were fortunate to have 12 tickets available to us – 6 for the Canes and 6 for the Gators.  To say how to decide who sat where during the game was a challenge would be an understatement.  Do we have all the Canes sit together? Do we do a mix? Do we keep the families together even if they are rooting for a different team?  We eventually decided on a mix, which was a little uncomfortable during the game especially toward the end.  And, we all know how the game turned out…a Gator victory, of course.  The walk to the car was a long one and a quiet one.  My daughter – also a Gator – stayed closed and we let the Canes replay the loss alone and silently cheered on our Gators!

The game is over, the weekend is behind us, and the firm divided has come to an end…well, at least until 2024 when the Gators face off against the Hurricanes again.  Until then, Tim and I will continue to do what we do best, which is practicing law and representing our clients in any personal injury claim they may have. Go Gators!