As Long Island Personal Injury Attorneys, we are often asked to explain the many aspects of the automobile insurance policy. This blog entry will explain some important parts of a New York State No-Fault automobile insurance policy.
The New York No-fault law was passed in the 1970’s to expedite payments caused by automobile accidents, such as medical bills and lost wages, without parties having to litigate fault through the overburdened court system. In exchange for this “benefit,” to qualify for compensation for pain and suffering, you must have suffered a “Serious Injury.”
Who receives No-Fault?
The No-Fault Law applies to any driver, cyclist, passengers or pedestrian, injured by a motor vehicle in New York State. To qualify for no-fault coverage the following must be met:
- The accident occurred in New York.
- The injured party was the driver or passenger of the insured vehicle or a cyclist or pedestrian struck by or in contact with the motor vehicle.
- The vehicle must be a car, truck, bus, taxi (not a motorcycle) or other vehicle covered by New York No-Fault law.
- The vehicle is registered in New York.
- The vehicle has an insurance policy sold in New York or issued by a company licensed to do business in the State of New York.
Who doesn’t receive No-Fault?
- Vespa or Scooter Riders (depending on the engine size)
- Injuries as a result of operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated
No-Fault is also known as PIP (personal injury protection) by statute provides a minimum of $50,000 in coverage (medical bills, lost wages, out of pocket expenses). Payments under No-Fault are only paid until the No-Fault carrier cuts off benefits; exhausts benefits; determines that medical services were not medically necessary or otherwise denies a claim. Injured parties are also entitled to lost wages- No-Fault pays 80% of wages up to a maximum benefit of $2,000.00 a month. Some No-Fault insurance policies have a one-time $200.00 deductible. This amount is applied to the first bill that the No-Fault carrier receives.
Additional Personal Injury Protection (APIP) provides benefits for extended PIP coverage. APIP benefits usually allow up to $100,000 in total coverage and a total lost wage benefit of $4,000.00 a month.
Optional Basic Economic Loss (OBEL) coverage is another coverage that can be added to the No-Fault policy. OBEL protection can be allocated to wages and medical coverage.
No-Fault coverage is designed to protect you and your loved ones if you are injured in a car accident. As such we always suggest to our clients that it is best to have the maximum amount of No-Fault coverage. Many car insurance companies have competitive pricing.
As you can see No-Fault Law can be very confusing and lead to a lot of questions. If you have any questions about your coverage of the Long Island Personal Injury Attorneys at Schalk, Ciaccio & Kahn are always available to help explain the differences in detail. We can be reached at 516-858-1266 or by visiting our website at SCKESQ.COM.