NEW YORK – In no-fault auto insurance states like New York, a person hurt in a car accident must meet a threshold called the “serious injury” threshold to circumvent the limitations of his own auto insurance policy. The serious injury threshold allows injured parties to file a liability claim or lawsuit against at-fault parties for damages they would otherwise be incapable of receiving through their insurance policy. If you’ve been seriously hurt in an auto accident in Queens, you might be wondering if your injuries are severe enough to meet this threshold. Let’s find out.
Understanding No-Fault Auto Insurance
Drivers and passengers injured in a car accident in a no-fault state must first report their injuries to their insurance companies. They must turn to their policies first to receive reimbursement for medical expenses and lost wages. In New York, the maximum compensation a person can recover in a car accident case is $50,000. If damages exceed that, drivers can step outside the no-fault system to receive additional funds.
In no-fault states, it’s very difficult to seek compensation for other damages, such as property damage or pain and suffering unless the injured party is eligible to file a claim against the at-fault party or a personal injury lawsuit. This is only possible when the accident resulted in a serious injury.
What does New York’s no-fault system cover?
New York’s no-fault system reimburses car accident victims for the following:
- All medical bills, including the cost of psychiatric treatment and physical therapy
- Lost earnings of up to $2,000 per month for up to 3 years
- Up to $25 per day for up to 1 year for other accident-related expenses
Understandably, those who suffer severe harm may not meet their needs with this coverage. Those with serious injuries may recover more losses from the at-fault party.
What counts as a serious injury?
By New York State law, a serious injury is defined as one which results in death, dismemberment, significant disfigurement, loss of a fetus, the permanent loss or use of a body organ or function or system, or a non-permanent and medically determined injury or impairment which prevents the injured party from conducting his or her daily activities for not less than 90 days during the 180 days immediately following the injury or impairment.
To determine whether your injuries may qualify for additional compensation, talk to an experienced car accident lawyer in Queens about your case. It’s crucial to seek representation against the insurance company or the attorney representing the at-fault driver to argue that your injuries qualify.
Cellino & Barnes (800) 888-8888