Florida auto insurance law loophole causing problems for medical care providers

Florida auto insurance
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Florida auto insuranceRegulators scramble to address issues before damages spiral out of control

Florida insurance regulators are making an effort to close a loophole in the state’s no-fault auto insurance law. State legislators introduced a new auto insurance law this year that changed the Florida personal injury protection (PIP) regulations. Regulators have discovered a loophole in the law that could have a serious impact on payments that are given to health care providers. The loophole has already generated a number of lawsuits, some of which have been targeted at the law itself, and regulators are looking to mitigate further damage.

Law meant to curb auto insurance fraud instead causes confusion and financial troubles

Legislation that would change the state’s PIP regulations was introduced earlier this year and signed into law by Governor Rick Scott just last week. The law aimed to fortify the state against auto insurance fraud by putting limitations on where accident victims could receive medical care and banning certain medical treatments. The law drew support from many of the state’s legislators, but after it was enacted, lawmakers, insurers, and medical professionals grew concerned over the issue of reimbursements.

Insurers may choose to ignore claims based on technicality of law

According to the law, medical care providers are able to charge insurance companies for their services. This is typical throughout the insurance and medical industries, but the law has introduced a sleuth of new medical providers that are eligible to provide care for PIP patients in the state. These providers are able to give care beginning July 1 of this year, but will not be officially recognized by the state’s regulations until January 1, 2013. Care providers are concerned that insurers may choose not to pay claims coming from these groups because of the law’s simple oversight.

State regulators to ensure that insurers reimburse medical care providers

Florida lawmakers are working on an amendment that would close this loophole. The Agency for Health Care Administration, a state-run agency responsible for regulations in the medical community, will be responsible for ensuring that insurance companies reimburse medical care providers regardless of how these companies view the dates outline in the auto insurance law.

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