Published: Jan 25, 2012 5:46 PM EST

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) - A House panel has cleared a bill aimed at preventing fraud in Florida's personal-injury insurance.
    
With a 10-5 party line vote, the Civil Justice Subcommittee on Wednesday approved the bill (CS/HB 119). It addresses the state's mandatory personal injury protection - or PIP - coverage.
    
The proposed law requires those hurt in a wreck to be seen in a hospital emergency room or hospital-owned walk-in clinic for PIP coverage to kick in.
    
PIP insurance pays up to $10,000 to cover medical bills and lost wages after an accident. It doesn't matter who caused the wreck. All Florida drivers must carry such "no-fault" insurance.
    
But fraudsters now have turned Florida into the top state for staged accidents. PIP fraud in the state is estimated to reach $1 billion this year.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)