The Implications of New York’s No-Fault Insurance Laws
The weeks following a car accident can be a nightmare – especially if you sustained injuries. Auto insurance can help alleviate some of the financial burden, but if you do not have adequate coverage, then you may fall into insurmountable debt.
One of the most important considerations after any crash is how your state determines fault. New York is a no-fault state, and this affects the process of recovering damages for car accident injuries.
If you were injured in a crash with a negligent driver, then White Plains injury attorney Kent Hazzard, LLP can help. Mr. Hazzard can evaluate your case to determine if you have a legitimate claim. You may be entitled to compensation for health-care bills, time off work and other damages. Call us today at 914-948-4700 to schedule an appointment.
In the meantime, read on to learn more about New York’s no-fault insurance laws:
New York Is a No-Fault State
According to the New York Department of Financial Services, the state follows a no-fault approach when it comes to determining liability after collisions. That means injured drivers must claim for personal-injury expenses and damages directly from their own insurance companies. Drivers must file claims with the company within 30 days of the accident, unless they can provide reasonable justification as to why they could not do so in the allotted time.
If you were in a pedestrian accident, you can file a claim against the company that insures the car in question. The insurance company should then cover the relevant medical costs, even if the driver did not cause the accident.
You Can File a Lawsuit If Your Injury Classifies as “Serious”
There are exceptions to the state’s no-fault insurance rule if your injury qualifies as a serious injury. For this to be the case, your injury must be in line with the state’s definition of “serious.”
According to NY Courts, a serious injury is one that causes death, loss of a fetus, loss of the use of a body organ, dismemberment or significant disfigurement. Your injury may also qualify as serious if you sustained a major fracture, or if the injury limits your movement or a bodily function.
If you sustained serious injuries that meet the legal requirements, you may file a claim against the driver who caused the accident. This will likely take the form of a civil court case, and it may be beneficial to enlist the help of a personal-injury lawyer who can guide you through the claims process.
Kent Hazzard, LLP can evaluate your case to determine if you have grounds for a lawsuit. If so, he can structure your claim, handle settlement negotiations and litigate your case if it goes to court.
Call us today at 914-948-4700 to schedule an appointment with a White Plains accident lawyer. Mr. Hazzard can handle the legal side of your injury so you can focus on recovery.