All New Yorkers who have a registered vehicle in the state must maintain minimum levels of auto insurance coverage. New York is likewise a no-fault auto insurance state. This means that your options for recovering compensation may be limited when you get injured in an auto accident. Here’s what you can generally expect when pursuing a car accident claim in the Big Apple.
Understanding New York’s No-Fault Auto Insurance
Under the state’s no-fault auto insurance laws, your own no-fault auto insurance, also known as personal injury protection (PIP), will cover the medical expenses and qualified out-of-pocket losses you incurred, up to the limits of your coverage, regardless of who’s at fault for the accident. With a no-fault insurance claim, however, you won’t be able to recover compensation for pain and suffering damages and other non-economic damages you incurred due to the accident.
You can only file a lawsuit or third-party insurance claim against the liable party if your injuries meet state-imposed thresholds. Likewise, no-fault benefits only apply to injuries in auto accidents and not to property damage. You can, however, claim compensation for vehicle damage or total loss from your comprehensive or auto collision insurance policy (if you have one) and the at-fault driver’s insurance carrier.
Why Your “Injuries” Matter When Pursuing a Car Accident Claim Against the At-Fault Driver
To seek compensation from the at-fault driver, the injuries you sustained from the accident should qualify as serious injuries under state-imposed thresholds. To meet these thresholds, you should have experienced one or more of the following:
- Bone fractures
- Significant disfigurement
- Significant limitations on the use of a body system or function
- Permanent limitations on the use of a body organ
- Full disability for more than 90 days
- Accidental abortion
This means that if you have qualifying injuries, you can go beyond your no-fault auto insurance coverage to recover more compensation. You can seek compensation for all the damages, including pain and suffering and other non-monetary damages, and hold the negligent driver legally liable for your injuries through a personal injury lawsuit or third-party insurance claim.
Speak to an Experienced Garden City Car Accident Lawyer Today
To learn more about how you can recover compensation from a car accident, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us here at the Falkowitz Law Firm. You can learn more about your claim during a free consultation with our experienced Garden City car accident lawyer by calling us at 844-385-4279 or filling out our online form.
Car Accident Compensation FAQs
Who Pays for Compensation in a Car Accident?
Because New York is a no-fault state, you can recover compensation from your no-fault insurance coverage and, if necessary, the at-fault party’s insurer.
What is No-Fault Insurance
This helps cover costs such as medical expenses, lost wages, and other qualified losses after an auto accident, regardless of who’s at fault.
Do I Need a Car Accident Lawyer?
For minor injuries and property damage that don’t exceed your PIP coverage, your insurer may settle without issues. But you’ll need a lawyer if you suffered severe injuries and/or property damage to pursue fair compensation.
Gary P. Falkowitz is the Managing Partner and Founding Attorney of the Falkowitz Law Firm PLLC‚ one of the premiere personal injury law firms in New York. Gary received his J.D., in 2005 from St. John’s University School of Law and served as an Assistant District Attorney with the Kings County District Attorney’s Office.