What Happens When a Car Accident Claim Exceeds Insurance Limits in NY?
The aftermath of a car accident can create a lot of fear, apprehension, and worry. You will doubtless be worried about the extent of your injuries and what you need to do in order to make a full recovery, as well as what the financial cost of this whole ordeal will be. Some plaintiffs may be dismayed to find out that their insurance does not have enough coverage to meet all of their needs. From that point, they may not know what to do or what their options are going forward.
When a car accident claim goes past what insurance your personal injury protection (PIP) insurance covers in New York, several things can happen. If the person responsible for the accident does not have adequate coverage, the victim can talk to their insurance provider about their uninsured or underinsured motorist policies and what that covers. If the party whose fault the accident is does not have enough coverage, they risk being sued if you have serious injuries. You need to have suffered serious injuries in order to file a car accident lawsuit, even if you have run out of coverage. Fortunately, our lawyers can help no matter what side of the lawsuit you find yourself on and whether your injuries are considered serious or not.
For a totally free case review, call our New York car accident lawyers from The Carrion Law Firm at the number (718) 841-0083.
How Insurance Maximums Can Affect Car Accident Claims in New York
Depending on what side of the case is involved, an exceeded insurance limit can have different effects on the case. Someone who is at fault for the accident will have different things to worry about than someone who was not at fault for the accident.
Insurance Maximums for Drivers Who Are at Fault
For the driver who is deemed at fault for the accident, they will be sued if they do not have enough insurance coverage to meet the injured party’s needs and the plaintiff’s injuries meet the serious injury threshold. In New York, this threshold is established by ISC Law § 5104(a). This threshold requires injuries such as broken bones or a traumatic brain injury such as a concussion. Generally, many injuries that will land you in the hospital are considered serious, but you should speak to our lawyers so that we can determine whether the law considers your injuries serious or not.
Insurance Maximums for Drivers Who Are Not at Fault
Drivers who are the victims of car accidents have different concerns regarding their insurance limits. The first thing you will want to look to do is utilize your PIP coverage. This coverage will pay for a portion of what is needed to cover your injuries but likely will not cover all of your expenses in the event of serious injuries. Next, examine your uninsured motorist coverage (or have our Bronx car accident lawyers examine it for you) to see what you are working with. Uninsured motorist coverage is exactly what it sounds like – it protects you when the other driver is either uninsured or does not have enough insurance to compensate you for your injuries.
If your uninsured motorist policy is not large enough to cover your damages for serious injury, your insurance may not be able to help you beyond PIP. In those instances, you will need to file a lawsuit against the parties you believe responsible for your injuries to get compensation. Even in those cases, there is no guarantee that you will win your lawsuit, and there is also no guarantee that the defendants will have the financial capital to compensate you fully.
Preemptive Steps to Avoid Exceeding Insurance Limits in NY
There are some steps that you can take to avoid exceeding your insurance limit should you or a loved one get into a car accident in New York. Doing even just some of these things can make your life easier in the event of a car accident because it can help hold you over until your lawsuit has run its course and lets you focus on important things like recovering from your injuries.
Review Your Insurance Policy
It is important to at least have a general idea of what your insurance coverage will provide so that you can have a basic sense of your situation after a car accident. While you do not need to know every minute detail of your policy, knowing the broad strokes can help you to know where you stand, even before contacting our lawyers.
Save for Injury
Another way to guard against maxing out your insurance coverage is to have some funds stored to pay for some of the damage in the event of an accident. Doing this can help mitigate financial stress in the short term while you pursue a lawsuit against the defendant. It is also likely that you will be able to claim compensation to get these funds repaid if you are successful in your claim.
While this may not be something you can do preemptively, tracking your expenses after a car accident is a very important thing to do when concerned about exceeding insurance maximums. If you can keep track of any medical expenses, repair costs to your vehicle or other property, and any other costs you incur because of a car accident, it can help to bolster your case when you ultimately go to court.
Speak to Our New York Car Accident Lawyers Right Away
If you have concerns about your situation, call our Manhattan car accident lawyers from The Carrion Law Firm at (718) 841-0083 for a free analysis of your case.