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New York Personal Injury Attorneys

Who Pays For The Medical Bills After A Car Accident?

March 13, 2020 in

If you have been injured in a car accident in New York, you may be wondering who is responsible for paying your medical bills. The answer is that it depends on the circumstances of your accident, existing insurance policies, policy limits, and the extent of your injuries. In general, the driver, your own insurance company, or the at-fault party and their insurance company could be responsible for paying all or a portion of your medical bills.

New York Insurance Requirements

To register a car in New York, you must prove that you have a New York State issued liability insurance policy. The minimum limits for liability insurance are $25,000 for bodily injury and $50,000 for the death of one person and $50,000 for bodily injury and $100,000 for the death of two or more people in an accident. You must also have a minimum of $50,000 for no-fault coverage.

No-Fault Insurance Coverage

If you are involved in an accident and you are the driver or a passenger, no-fault laws require that the driver’s insurance company cover your medical bills up to the policy limits. If you are involved in an accident as a pedestrian or bicyclist, the driver’s insurance company is also responsible for your medical bills up to the policy limits. It doesn’t matter who was at fault for the accident. If your medical expenses exceed the no-fault policy limits, you might be able to collect additional compensation depending on the circumstances of your accident, injuries sustained, and additional insurance benefits available.  

Uninsured Or Underinsured Insurance Coverage

If the driver of the accident vehicle does not have insurance coverage, you may be able to file a claim with your insurance company for uninsured motorist coverage. If your bills exceed the driver’s policy limits, you may then have a claim for underinsured coverage with your insurance company or the driver’s. 

Underinsured coverage can be tricky, however, because it generally only covers your bills for the policy limits purchased, including the amount covered by the driver’s insurance policy. For example, if you have a $100,000 underinsured policy limit and the driver’s insurance covered $50,000 of your medical bills, your underinsured policy may only cover an additional $50,000 of your medical bills for a total of $100,000 in coverage. 

Bodily Injury Claim

If someone else was at fault for the accident and your injuries fall in the ‘serious’ class under New York law, you may have a claim against the at-fault party for your medical bills as well as your pain and suffering. Injuries are considered serious if they fall into any of the following categories:

  • Fatal injuries
  • Loss of fetus
  • Dismemberment
  • Disfiguration
  • Loss or limitation of use
  • Fracture
  • Inability to perform daily activities for at least 90 of the 180 days following the car accident

Collecting Compensation For Medical Bills

New York’s car accident laws can be complex and insurance companies can be very challenging to work with. Their goal is to pay as little as possible for their claims, so they frequently deny claims or challenge the extent and severity of injuries sustained in car accidents in an effort to reduce or eliminate the amount that they are responsible for paying. If you have been involved in an accident, collecting compensation for your medical bills and other damages is easier when you have an experienced New York City car attorney advocating for your recovery. 

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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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