My auto insurance offers an option for 'Medical Expense Payments' which says it:

Pays medical expenses such as surgery, x-rays, ambulance, and physicians, regardless of who was at fault.

I have elected not to carry it, but noticed that the maximum limit in my case is only $10,000 which seems kinda low considering how bad you can get messed up in an auto accident. Since I already have medical insurance, I'm wondering when this auto medical coverage makes sense to purchase?

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    which country are you in? – Aganju May 16 '16 at 21:09
  • United States . – public wireless May 17 '16 at 12:58
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    Medical expense coverage is typically for others in your vehicle who suffer injuries in an accident, as well as for anyone else involved in an accident (e.g. your car strikes a pedestrian) regardless of whether you or someone else was at fault. – Dilip Sarwate May 17 '16 at 15:48
  • Would that pay your medical insurance deductible (or whomever was hit)? – Joe May 17 '16 at 17:21
  • @DilipSarwate If I were to hit a pedestrian in my car, wouldn't that be covered by my bodily injury liability coverage? – public wireless May 18 '16 at 16:13

For once, the DMV has proven useful!


What Does Medical Payments Cover?

Medical payments coverage generally pays for medical costs after you are hurt in a car accident, regardless of who is found at fault for the accident. Additionally, medical payments insurance may help pay for:

  • Funeral expenses.
  • Injuries sustained by your passengers.
  • Injuries you sustain as a pedestrian or bicyclist after a car hits you.
  • Necessary dental care as a result of a car accident.

Benefits and restrictions of medical payments coverage will differ amongst car insurance companies. Make sure that when you are comparison-shopping for your car insurance, you speak with an insurance agent from the company to fully understand the details of their medical payments coverage.

Really, as with most optional insurance, it comes down to a bit of a gamble. Do you want to pay $X/mo extra for this coverage and hope you don't need it, or does the risk sound too high compared to the $X/mo they want to charge.

Medical Payments Insurance, which I believe is what you're referring to, is supplemental to medical insurance that you hold for yourself as well as insurance passengers may hold. If your personal insurance isn't great, or doesn't cover auto accidents, then you may want to get the coverage. It's important to know the fine-print on both your standard medical insurance and the Medical Payments Insurance to ensure you're truly covered if you need it.

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    For whatever it's worth, dmv.org isn't run by a government agency. – quid May 17 '16 at 21:51
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    @quid Ha! I didn't even look at the giant white bar at the top with that disclaimer. Someone else decided the DMV was not useful and took it upon themselves to be useful. Fair enough. – BobbyScon May 17 '16 at 21:53
  • Is it really the case that your standard health insurance wouldn't cover your medical expenses in an auto accident? – public wireless May 18 '16 at 16:09
  • @publicwireless It entirely depends on your coverage. I believe most companies will cover it, but I have heard of ones that don't, especially HDHP type plans. – BobbyScon May 18 '16 at 17:02

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