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New York Personal Injury Attorneys

Can I get Compensation As A Passenger In A Car Accident?

March 12, 2020 in

Yes, passengers in car accidents in New York may recover compensation for medical expenses and lost wages related to the accident, and sometimes other damages as well. New York’s car accident law can be complicated, but in general, passengers should be able to recover for their losses under a no-fault insurance claim. Sometimes they may have additional recovery options through an underinsured motorist claim or a bodily injury claim.

Recovering Compensation Under A No-Fault Insurance Policy

New York is a no-fault insurance state, so if you have been injured as a passenger in a car accident, you would first turn to the driver’s insurance policy for compensation. Generally, injured passengers are permitted to collect compensation for medical expenses and lost wages due to missing work and other reasonable expenses related to the accident, such as medical prescription costs. It is important to note that you are not entitled to noneconomic damages, such as pain and suffering, when collecting under no-fault insurance.

Recovering Compensation Under Your Supplemental Underinsured Motorist Policy

If your medical expenses and lost wages are higher than your driver’s no-fault policy limits, you may be able to collect the remaining damages under a supplemental underinsured motorist policy. For example, if your injuries are valued at $60,000, but the driver’s policy limits stop at $50,000, you may seek $10,000 for the remaining expenses under additional benefits (additional PIP) from the driver’s policy, your own policy, or a family member’s supplemental insurance policy. 

Recovering Compensation Under A Bodily Injury Claim Against The At-Fault Driver

In some cases, you may have a bodily injury claim against the at-fault driver when your injuries are considered ‘serious’ under New York law. To succeed in a bodily injury claim, you will need to prove that the driver was at fault or partially at fault for the accident and that the injuries you sustained were ‘serious.’ 

In New York, car accident injuries qualify as ‘serious’ if they fall into any of the following categories: death, disfigurement, loss of fetus, fracture, permanent loss of use, permanent limitation of use, or a medically determined injury that prevents the injured from participating in regular daily activities for a minimum of 90 days during the first 180 days following the accident.

Types Of Compensation Under A Bodily Injury Claim

In addition to economic damages, such as lost wages and medical expenses, noneconomic damages are permitted in bodily injury claims. Collecting compensation for noneconomic damages can significantly increase the value of your claim compared to the value of no-fault claims where your recovery is limited to economic damages. 

Making A Car Accident Claim

New York’s already complicated car accident laws are made even more complex by imposing strict claim filing deadlines. Some deadlines are as short as 30 days to file a notice after the accident, which means that you do not have time to wait when pursuing an injury claim. If you miss a filing deadline, you may lose your right to recover compensation for your injuries and damages. 

If you have sustained serious injuries in a New York car accident, an experienced New York car accident attorney can help you succeed in your car accident claim. A knowledgeable and skilled attorney will make sure that you meet all filing deadlines and will work to maximize your compensation.  

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Our fee is on a contingency basis. If we don’t recover money for you, we will never charge you. If you are unable to come to any of our offices, we are happy to visit you at home or in the hospital.

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