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What Is Meant by a “No-Fault” State?

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Filed under Automotive, Automotive Help, Editorial

If you have been injured in an accident, your biggest concern should be getting better. You may find yourself having to go to multiple doctor’s appointments and miss hours from work. You may have to hire a maid because your injuries will not allow you to do normal house cleaning and you may even have to pay for ride-sharing services because your accident left you unable to drive.

You may be in no mood to deal with filing an insurance claim. Unfortunately, doctor bills and repairs to your vehicle will be expensive. Insurance is required for a good reason and it should be there when you need it.

When dealing with an insurance company in the state of New York, it can be helpful to know how no-fault accident claims work. You may also want to learn a bit about the specifics of no-fault law.

What are the two kinds of insurance rules?

States in America follow one of two insurance rules; fault or no-fault. In a fault or tort state, the person who caused the accident is responsible for paying its associated bills. In a no-fault state, such as New York, a driver’s own insurance will pay for their accident-related bills.

There are only 15 no-fault states in the country. However, drivers in the states of Kentucky, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey have a no-fault option. A driver can volunteer to adhere to a no-fault rule in these states.

The History of No-Fault Insurance

The 1960s and 70s saw an onslaught of personal injury lawsuits. Companies paid out millions of dollars to plaintiffs, and many of these suits were considered to be frivolous. The suits were thought to put a strain on the court system itself.


In the mid-60s, two professors of law published excerpts from an upcoming book in the Harvard Law Review in which they proposed a system where every driver would purchase “basic protection coverage” to pay for their own medical bills and the auto repair cost in an accident. The at-fault driver would only have to pay if the injured driver’s bills exceeded the amount of money for which they were covered. The at-fault driver would also be responsible for injuries to passengers.

New York Insurance Requirements

If you are a driver in the state of New York, you will be required to purchase at least $25,000 of insurance for injury to one person, $50,000 for injury to all persons, and $10,000 for damage to property.

If you are injured due to another driver’s negligence and your bills exceed this amount, the amount of your coverage, you may be able to collect money from the at-fault driver in certain cases. If you have brain damage or a bone fracture from an accident, you may be able to sue as well.

If an accident victim is left paralyzed or disfigured, they may be able to sue for pain and suffering. A Long Island Car Accident Lawyer can tell you if your case is strong enough to file a suit against an at-fault driver in a no-fault state.

Getting injured in an accident is a devastating experience. Getting money to pay your bills can help to heal your injuries and set your mind at ease.


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