No Fault Insurance New York – Impact on Auto Accident Lawsuits
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New York No-Fault Auto Insurance

Individuals who have been involved in a motor vehicle accident in New York may be eligible for No-Fault insurance coverage. No Fault insurance in New York provides benefits for medical coverage, lost income and other immediate costs, and doesn’t require legal action to prove who was liable in an accident.

What is no fault auto insurance and who is eligible?

New York No Fault auto insurance covers up to $50,000 for medical expenses related to the accident, lost wages for up to three years, and other related costs, no matter who is at fault. No-Fault insurance covers injuries incurred in single car collisions and auto accidents involving multiple vehicles. This coverage extends to any person harmed in a motor vehicle accident in New York with the exception of motorcycle drivers or passengers.

New York no-fault insurance covers:

  • A driver of a motor vehicle injured in a motor vehicle accident
  • A passenger in a car injured in a motor vehicle accident
  • A pedestrian injured in a motor vehicle accident
  • A bicyclist injured in a motor vehicle accident
  • A passenger in a bus injured in a motor vehicle accident
  • A passenger in a taxi, livery cab, or limousine injured in a motor vehicle accident
  • A passenger in a truck injured in a motor vehicle accident 

No Fault insurance New York

New York insurance companies that sell coverage provide No-Fault benefits to every motor vehicle in the state except motorcycles. In the event of an accident, the injured party typically receives No-Fault coverage through the carrier that insures the vehicle in which the person was injured. As an example, the passenger or driver would receive benefits via the insurance company that insured the car.

Filing a No Fault auto accident claim in NY

In order to claim No-Fault insurance benefits in New York you must file a Notice of Accident form (NF-2) within 30 days of the accident. This time limit is strictly enforced, so do not delay. If you have been involved in any type of motor vehicle accident, contact your car insurance company and notify them of the collision as they are your No-Fault carrier. All claims for lost income, medical expenses, and other reimbursements must be submitted to the insurance carrier.

Serious injury threshold

When victims of motor vehicle accidents wish to seek compensation outside of New York No Fault auto insurance limits – in effect, anything more than $50,000 – they must prove that they suffered a serious injury as dictated by New York Insurance Law [5102 (d)], which states that you must meet at least one of eight criteria.

Any of the following meet the threshold of “serious injury” in NY:

  1. Personal injury which results in death
  2. Dismemberment; significant disfigurement
  3. Fracture
  4. Loss of a fetus
  5. Permanent loss of use of a body organ, member, function, or system
  6. Permanent consequential limitation of use of a body organ or member
  7. Significant limitation of use of a body function or system
  8. A medically determined injury or impairment of a non-permanent nature which prevents the injured person from performing substantially all of the material acts which constitute such person’s usual and customary daily activities for not less than ninety days during the one hundred eighty days immediately following the occurrence of the injury or impairment.

Car accidents frequently result in whiplash and/or soft tissue injuries, which can have long-term implications and require extensive medical care. Such injuries must satisfy numbers six, seven or eight from above and include documentation of specific damage, extensive treatment, and limited or lost functionality. In addition, those who are not capable of working for 90 out of 180 days following an accident may qualify for the serious injury threshold.

To prove that you meet the serious injury threshold, the following are recommended:

  • Make immediate complaints about injuries and pain at the time of the accident
  • Get emergency care treatment the same day as the crash, or within the next few days
  • Receive a specific diagnosis concerning your accident-related injuries
  • Miss time from work due to the injury
  • Have proof of consistent medical treatment over several months
  • Document a loss of motion of the cervical and/or lumbar spine

Contact a New York auto accident attorney

While New York No Fault auto insurance will cover the majority of accident-related medical costs, lost earnings and other incidental expenses, the maximum benefits extend to $50,000 and do not compensate for pain and suffering. In situations where car accident victims seek damages outside of No Fault coverage and must meet the serious injury threshold, auto accident lawsuits are the only means to recoup these losses.

If you believe you’re entitled to compensation above and beyond No-Fault insurance coverage, please contact The Sanders Firm today. Our team of NY car accident attorneys is well-versed in litigation involving New York No Fault auto insurance law and can counsel plaintiffs on how to meet threshold standards. Serving residents of Queens, Brooklyn, the Bronx, Manhattan, Staten Island, and Long Island for more than 40 years, our practice offers complimentary consultations to help answer any questions you have regarding filing a NY car accident lawsuit. Call us toll-free: 1.800 FAIR PLAY ( 800.324.7752).