New York is a No-Fault State. Here’s What that Means for Your Auto Accident Claim
For every 1,000 miles you drive in your car, your chances of getting into a wreck are 1 in 366. Those odds might seem remote, but here’s another statistic: the average driver is involved in an auto accident every 17.9 years. If you began driving at 16 and continue into your 70s, 80s, or perhaps even your 90s, the chances you will be in at least one wreck during your life are extremely high.
Personal Injury Protection (PIP) Insurance
New York requires licensed drivers to carry a certain amount of auto insurance. PIP insurance, or no-fault insurance, is a requirement in New York; any driver must have a policy that would pay up to $50,000 in economic losses per injured person. After an accident, this means you would file a claim with your own insurance provider through your PIP policy. The provider should pay out up to $50,000 in medical bills, lost wages, and some other expenses (excluding property damage) for the driver and each injured passenger.
In some accidents, particularly catastrophic ones involving severe bodily injury, a driver’s PIP insurance might not cover all the necessary expenses. New York requires drivers to carry liability insurance for these situations. At minimum, liability insurance should cover up to $25,000 in bodily injury-related expenses if one person is injured in a wreck and up to $50,000 total if multiple people are injured. Additionally, minimum liability insurance pays out at least $10,000 in property damage per wreck. The at-fault driver is the one whose liability insurance pays out after an accident.
Uninsured Motorist Coverage
In addition to PIP and liability insurance coverage, New York requires drivers to carry uninsured motorist coverage. This pays out if you need to dip into the other driver’s liability insurance but cannot because they have no auto insurance.
Altogether, New York’s required minimum insurance limits are more robust than those in other states. But, again, expenses resulting from a catastrophic wreck can easily blow past these limits. In these cases, you may have success in a personal injury lawsuit if you can prove you sustained a serious injury. This includes broken bones, permanent and/or substantial disfigurement, and substantial limitation of a bodily function or system, among other afflictions.
New York law allows for drivers to file lawsuits after a car wreck if they seek economic damages that are not satisfied by PIP insurance. Drivers may also file a lawsuit if they want to recover non-economic damages like pain and suffering. However, in either case, drivers must show they suffered a serious injury as defined by state law.
Put Your Case in the Hands of Experienced Attorneys
Unfortunately, recovering what you deserve after a car accident is often more complicated and stressful than it needs to be. Insurance companies make money by not paying out claims, after all. And, wrangling with your insurance provider might seem like child’s play if you have to file a claim with the other driver’s insurance.
Regardless, you deserve someone on your side who isn’t afraid to fight to get you what you need. The attorneys at Silberstein, Awad & Miklos have helped countless New York drivers get justice after car accidents, and we’d be honored to put our team to work for you. Get in touch with us today for a free consultation.