You’re sitting at a bustling intersection in New York, waiting for the light to turn green. After a few moments, you get the green, and you take your foot off the brake and head into the intersection.
But you don’t make it all the way through. A car slams into your right side, sending you careening into the next lane and almost into oncoming traffic. You seem, at first, to be ok, but the pain becomes overwhelming almost as soon as the adrenaline leaves your body.
So, who pays for your treatment? The driver that hit you had run a red light. He was, without a doubt, 100% at fault.
But we’re in New York, and New York is a no-fault state. As such, your insurance company will be responsible for your medical bills.
What Is a No-Fault State?
As a driver in New York, you are required by the state’s no-fault laws to carry Personal Injury Protection (PIP) coverage. This insurance pays for your medical expenses (and/or your passenger’s) if you are in a car accident—even if the accident was caused by another driver. It also covers a pedestrian’s injuries if you hit them.
The goal of no-fault insurance is to provide compensation and help injured persons make a full recovery as soon as possible. Without this insurance, you would need to prove the other driver’s fault before receiving compensation.
In the scenario above, for example, where another driver ran a red light and hit you while you were driving through the intersection, you would need to prove their fault before their insurance would cover your medical expenses. Because the hypothetical driver was clearly at fault in the above scenario, proving fault would not be terribly difficult—but some accidents are much more complicated.
What If No-Fault Coverage Isn’t Enough?
If you are seriously injured, PIP coverage might not be enough to pay for your treatment.
In this case, you have several options, including:
- Applying for additional no-fault (i.e. Additional PIP) benefits through your vehicle’s policy or the policy of a related member of your household
- Filing a claim with your regular health insurance
- Applying for Federal Social Security Disability benefits
- Filing a lawsuit against the motorist who caused the accident
To determine which of these options is right for you, let an experienced attorney assess your situation. Both your insurance company and the other driver will likely put up a fight, and a qualified lawyer can provide the advocacy you need.
Let Our Attorney Fight for Your Future
Filing a personal injury claim is exhausting in many ways. You are already managing the pain, suffering, and other debilitating effects of your injury, and it may seem easier and simpler to pay your medical expenses out of pocket rather than endure the hassle of insurance company negotiations or a lawsuit.
At the Law Office of Seni Popat, however, our attorney has a proven track record of securing substantial compensation for injured clients. He is here to handle the complexities of personal injury law so you can focus on your recovery.