There are many potential outcomes when people are involved in motor vehicle accidents in western New York. It could be just a minor “fender bender” that only requires minimum repairs and either minor injuries or no injuries at all. Others result in very serious injuries that may require extensive medical treatment for the victims and the vehicles involved could be a total loss. In between these two extremes are a wide variety of outcomes resulting in injuries of various severity.
After many motor vehicle accidents people will require some medical treatment though. As we all know, medical care can be very expensive and many people are left wondering how their treatment bills will be paid for after an accident.
Basics of no-fault insurance coverage
New York is known as a no-fault state. This means that drivers are required to have Personal Injury Protection (PIP) insurance in order to drive their vehicle. PIP insurance is there to pay for any medical bills of the insured and their passengers regardless of who is at fault for the accident. It can take time to determine fault and responsibility for accidents, but these insurance payments can be made right away while fault and ultimately responsibility are being determined. PIP insurance will also pay for lost income resulting from being unable to work while recovering from a crash.
PIP insurance can provide a valuable initial benefit after a car accident. However, basic PIP insurance only pays for damages up to $50,000. As many people are aware, medical bills alone can easily exceed that amount. Also, lost income of the driver and any injured passengers can contribute to exhausting the $50,000 limit. PIP insurance also will not pay for non-economic damages such as pain and suffering.
In these situations, the victims of the accident may be able to initiate a lawsuit against the driver who was at fault for the accident in order to receive the compensation for any damages that exceed $50,000.
While careful drivers have control over their own actions, they unfortunately cannot always account for the bad behaviors and poor decisions of other motorists on the road. Accidents can happen even if you did everything you were supposed to do. Injuries often result, and while PIP insurance will pay for a portion of it, lawsuits may be necessary when damages exceed PIP limits. Experienced attorneys understand how devastating these accidents and injuries are, and can guide the injured through the process of filing a legal claim.