Generally, no-fault insurance is a type of vehicle insurance in which the insurer covers damages incurred by its customer, the insured, in the event of an accident – regardless of who is at fault. This type of coverage eliminates the need for a driver involved in a vehicle accident to pursue the other driver’s insurance company for monetary reimbursement of damages incurred and caused by that driver. If you or someone you know has been involved in a vehicle accident, or suffered any other type of personal injury, contact an experienced and aggressive vehicle accident attorney right away for help understanding your specific insurance policy.
No-Fault Car Insurance – Required or Not?
Presently, no-fault car insurance is available in 12 states around the nation in addition to the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico. Some states require this insurance while others do not. The states that have no-fault insurance laws include:
- New Jersey;
- New York;
- North Dakota;
- Pennsylvania; and
Pennsylvania, Kentucky and New Jersey allow for residents to elect purchasing no-fault insurance or to opt-out and choose “full tort” coverage. “Full tort” coverage does not impose a limit on the dollar amount for which a person can sue in civil court. This type of coverage is available in almost every other state in the nation. Laws in the remaining nine states listed above, however, do not provide this option, as no-fault insurance is mandated. Numerous states in the nation enacted no-fault laws in the 1970s and later repealed them.
What is No-Fault Insurance: Car Accidents Coverage
If you live in a state where no-fault car insurance is optional – or mandatory – you should know what rights and obligations these laws afford.
● Bodily injury – as opposed to traditional car insurance, which allows an insured to take out liability coverage to pay for bodily injury claims if deemed at fault, no-fault car insurance coverage extends to the insured. In other words, there is no need to wait for reimbursement by way of a lawsuit or have medical bills lingering.
● Associated costs – no-fault car insurance has a personal injury protection (PIP) element that assures both medical bills are covered and associated losses. Depending on the state, no-fault coverage may also compensate for lost wages as a result of the accident.
No-fault coverage pertains only to coverage for personal bodily injury – it does not cover property damage. Accordingly, property damage liability coverage should be included when purchasing car insurance to pay for the property damage of others. Likewise, collision coverage (which is often optional, unless required by a car loan or finance company) should be purchased to pay for damages for your own car in the event of an accident.
Contact a Personal Injury Attorney
While no-fault coverage has its benefits, it does not entirely prevent lawsuits from arising out of a vehicle accident. Drivers involved in an accident may still file suit against another, however, no-fault laws restrict when a suit may be brought. Because these restrictions vary by state, it is important to contact knowledgeable personal injury attorneys to handle your case. The legal professionals at Levine & Blit, PLLC have years of experience and will conduct an initial evaluation of your case, at no cost. With offices in New York, Florida and California, contact us by completing our online form today. We will make sure that you understand all aspects of the law when trying to figure out “what is no-fault insurance” and how it can help you get the care you need without having to incur hospital and doctor bills in the process.