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Medical Payments Coverage: Homeowners Options

"Medical payments to others" coverage, also called Coverage F, is one type of coverage in a homeowners policy that pays for the medical expenses of a guest who suffered bodily injuries while on your residential property. Covered expenses may include hospital services, medical tests, x-rays and more. Coverage does not extend to yourself or household members, like a spouse and children.

Medical payments coverage may be included in standard homeowners insurance policies, but not always. Keep reading to learn how medical payments coverage for homeowners works.

What Is Medical Payments Coverage?

Medical payments to others coverage is a type of homeowners insurance coverage that pays for medical expenses, like ambulance fees and x-rays, when somebody suffers an injury while inside your home, regardless of who is legally liable for the injury. There are some instances where coverage may apply outside your home — your dog bites somebody while walking around the neighborhood, for example.

As the name suggests, only the injuries of other people are covered under medical payments coverage. Yourself, resident family members or other regular household members will not be covered — instead, your health insurance (or car insurance in auto-related injuries) would pay for your medical costs.

Coverage F, or “medical payments to others” covers the medical bills of somebody who was injured while on your property.

Medical payments coverage may be included in a standard homeowners insurance policy, but not always. If it's not included, you will need to purchase coverage, which will increase the cost of homeowners insurance. Medical payments coverage is also called Coverage F.

Medical Payments Coverage Example

Say you're hosting a housewarming party and invite several of your friends. While giving a tour of your new home, one of your guests trips and injures their elbow. Their medical expenses total $800 and your medical payments coverage limit is $1,000. You file an insurance claim with your home insurance company and your policy's medical payments coverage covers the entire bill.

What Does Medical Payments Coverage Pay For?

Medical payments insurance was intended to cover smaller injuries due to its lower coverage limits — typically up to $1,000 to $5,000. Common medical expenses that may be covered under Coverage F in your homeowners insurance policy may include:

  • Emergency transportation (e.g., ambulance ride)

  • First aid

  • Hospital stays

  • Medical tests

  • Surgical procedures

  • X-rays

  • Dental work

What Medical Payments Coverage Does Not Cover

Medical payments coverage in home insurance would not apply in the following circumstances:

  • Injuries for you or other regular household members

  • Property damage to your guest (may be covered under liability coverage in a homeowners policy)

  • Certain accidents outside your home (e.g., your car insurance policy would cover the other driver's medical bills in a car accident you caused)

  • Legal fees if the injured guest sues you

You can find more details about your coverage and exclusions on the declarations page of your policy.

Not all homeowners policies include medical payments coverage, but it can be useful to have.

How Do You Make a Medical Payments Claim?

Be sure to review the steps below so you know what to do when somebody is injured while inside your home:

  1. Tend to the injured person and do your best to make sure they are okay (e.g., offer to apply ice to a sprained ankle).

  2. Take pictures of the injury and where the accident happened inside your home.

  3. Contact your insurance company for further steps on filing a homeowners insurance claim.

If your claim is approved, your home insurer will cover the injured person's medical bills, up to the coverage limits. There is typically no deductible when filing a claim under medical payments coverage.

Medical Payments (Coverage F) - Get Homeowners Insurance

How Does Medical Payments Covered Differ From Liability Insurance?

Both medical payments and personal liability coverage can cover the medical expenses of a guest who suffers an injury while in your home but under different circumstances.

Home Insurance: Personal Liability vs. Medical Payments


Medical payments

Personal liability

Fault

Covers medical costs regardless of who is at fault

Covers medical costs only if you are liable

Coverage

Bodily injury coverage only

Bodily injuries and property damage liability coverage

Limits

$1,000-$5,000

$100,000-$500,000 (varies)

Legal fees

Does not cover legal fees (intended as a deterrent to the injured party filing a lawsuit)

Covers legal fees

Fault

Medical payments coverage will pay for medical costs, regardless of who is at fault. Whether your guest was injured because your dog bit them or their ankle broke while climbing the stairs, your medical payments coverage should cover their medical costs, up to the coverage limits.

Personal liability coverage only pays for medical costs when you can be found liable for causing the injuries a guest suffered, such as a fall due to a loose handrail while climbing your stairs.

Coverage

Medical payments coverage only covers medical costs related to an injury a guest suffers while on your property. Personal liability coverage covers both medical costs and property damage costs when you can be held responsible for the losses.

For example, say a tree branch from an untrimmed tree on your lot falls on your guest's vehicle while parked on your driveway. Your guest is severely injured and their car is damaged. Your personal liability coverage would cost the medical and vehicle repair bills, up to the coverage limits.

Limits

Coverage limits under medical payments coverage are significantly lower when compared to personal liability coverage. With typical coverage limits of $1,000 to $5,000, medical payments coverage was meant to cover small injuries.

Personal liability coverage has significantly higher limits that typically extend up to $500,000. For more severe injuries that exceed your medical payments coverage, personal liability coverage would take over (if you can be held responsible for the injury).

For example, medical payments coverage may cover treating a minor sprain but personal liability coverage would apply if that injury required thousands of dollars in surgery and physical therapy.

Legal Fees

Medical payments coverage will not cover legal fees if the injured party sues you for their injuries. Rather, medical payments can serve as a deterrent to a costly lawsuit, especially if the injury is minor and the injured party's medical costs are fully covered.

If the injury does lead to a lawsuit, then you would need to file a personal liability claim. Its higher coverage limit is better capable of covering the legal costs and rewards to the injured party.

Your personal liability coverage would cover the medical bills for severe injuries and personal property losses, up to coverage limits.

FAQs

Do I need medical payments coverage?

Homeowners insurance policies may already include medical payments coverage. If not, buying it may be useful for covering less-costly injuries and deterring an expensive lawsuit if somebody suffers injuries while inside your home. If you're able to cover the cost of treating an injury, the injured person may be less likely to file a lawsuit, which can involve significant costs in the form of legal fees, compensation for general pain and suffering and more.

What does coverage F mean?

Coverage F, or "medical payments to others" coverage, is one type of coverage in a homeowners insurance policy that covers the medical bills of somebody who was injured while on your property. The other types of coverage are Coverage A (dwelling), Coverage B (other structures), Coverage C (personal property), Coverage D (loss of use), Coverage E (personal liability).

Add Medical Payments Coverage to Your Home Policy

Not all homeowners policies include medical payments coverage, but it can be useful to have. Minor injuries that guests suffer while inside your home can escalate to a costly lawsuit if you don't pay for medical costs. Medical payments can take care of medical bills for minor injuries.

Consider adding medical payments coverage to your home insurance policy if it's not included. Better yet, let SmartFinancial help you snag a better homeowners insurance policy with medical payments coverage at the lowest price by analyzing insurance partners in your area. Get free home insurance quotes by answering a few questions after entering your zip code below!

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