Consumer Advisory; Drivers, Hold on to PIP to Protect Yourselves and Your Passengers

TALLAHASSEE, Fla., Oct. 19 /PRNewswire/ — Florida’s Legislators did the right thing in October by reforming and reenacting the state’s mandatory no- fault auto insurance law. Under the revised law, personal injury protection (PIP) is required of all drivers on and after January 1, 2008, and insurers will be required to report policyholders who have not obtained coverage by the January 1 deadline to the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles. Also, keep in mind that under the current law, all Florida drivers still are required to carry property damage insurance-regardless of whether they have PIP coverage.

While drivers can opt out of PIP until January 1, it is essential that they carefully consider the consequences of canceling that coverage. Through the end of 2007, you may be financially responsible for automobile accidents if you are the at-fault driver. Additionally, there is greater risk that you might find yourself in an accident with another driver who is unable to pay your medical bills. Therefore, it is critical that all drivers take this time to review their automobile insurance policies and purchase the necessary coverage so they are covered in the event of an accident. Without PIP coverage, drivers lose the $10,000 medical benefit PIP provides regardless of who is at fault.

Florida’s CFO Alex Sink also has encouraged all drivers to review their policies and purchase adequate coverage.

During the PIP transitional period leading up to January 1, it is important to contact your local agent to review your auto insurance policies and coverage to ensure that you, your family and passengers are sufficiently protected if involved in an auto crash.

Please consider the following:– The revived no-fault auto insurance law requires all drivers to carry$10,000 of PIP on and after January 1, 2008.– You can reduce unnecessary risk and worry by purchasing PIP in advanceof the January 1 deadline.– $10,000 in property damage insurance continues to be mandatory, anddrivers must provide proof of property damage coverage when registeringtheir vehicle as well as at routine stops and when involved in an autoaccident.– Insurers still are required by law to report property damage policyissuances, cancellations or non-renewals to the Florida Department ofHighway Safety and Motor Vehicles.– Auto insurers must provide customers notice by November 15, 2007, thatPIP is mandatory and that failure to purchase PIP by January 1 canresult in suspension of their driver’s licenses and registrations.

This Consumer Advisory is brought to you by Cash Register Insurance Agency and Florida No-Fault Insurance Agency, serving nearly 160,000 policyholders throughout Florida. For a listing of an office nearest you or for additional

policy or coverage information, please call our toll-free customer service number: (800) 444-4211.

Direct General Insurance Company

CONTACT: Barbara Ash of Hill and Knowlton, +1-850-222-4100,[email protected], for Direct General Insurance Company