New York is a “no fault” state. What does no fault mean?
New York is a No-Fault Insurance State
New York is a “no-fault” insurance state, which means that insureds are generally reimbursed by their insurance company for damages regardless of who was responsible for causing the accident. Insureds can be reimbursed for medical costs and other losses that might surface after the accident.
The state of New York also requires registered motor vehicles to have liability insurance with certain minimum coverage amounts:
- $25,000/$50,000 for bodily injury per person
- $50,000/$100,000 for death
- $10,000 for property damage per accident
For additional information on insurance coverage requirements, please visit New York’s Department of Motor Vehicles website.
No Fault Benefits
These are benefits paid by the insurance company of the car you were driving, was a passenger in or were struck by as a pedestrian, regardless of fault as to the cause of the accident. These benefits include payment of medical bills, prescription drugs, lost wages, housekeeping and/or transportation to and from medical providers, all as the result of the accident. There is a very short time, only 30 days from the date of the accident, in order to file an application for these benefits.
New York is a no-fault state when it comes to motor vehicle accidents. What that basically means is that if you’re a passenger in a car, or a pedestrian or a bicyclist who gets hit by a car, that vehicle, whether you’re in it or it hits you, that insurance company pays your medical bills and your time lost from work, no matter whose fault the accident is.
Now, in order to sue or make a claim against the vehicle that is at fault, you have to reach the no-fault threshold. And the no-fault threshold is basically whether or not you have a serious injury under the law.
There are certain categories of serious injury in New York State. A fracture is automatically serious. Significant scarring is automatically serious. Loss of a fetus is automatically serious. And then there’s a couple of categories that get a little tricky.
But, in essence, you need some type of permanent partial disability in order to prove a serious injury and then pursue your claim for pain and suffering damages.