Injured in a New York car accident and wondering how your medical bills are going to be paid and by whom?  Well, you have come to the right place for answers here in part I of our series on New York No Fault law.

What is No Fault?

New York is a no fault state. That means that every motor vehicle (car, van, truck, etc.) garaged in New York state must be covered by an insurance policy which provides the state minimum level of benefits for any occupant of the motor vehicle who is injured in a car accident, regardless of fault (with certain exceptions). These benefits are known as no fault benefits. 

Who pays the medical bills when I am injured in a car accident?

The insurer of the vehicle that you were occupying during the accident is known as the no fault carrier.  The no fault carrier is obligated to pay the accident related medical bills and related expenses up until the point that the benefits have either been paid in full or more commonly, been terminated by the carrier.

What do No Fault benefits cover?

  • Accident related medical medical, hospital, surgical, nursing and dental services;
  • prescription drug and prosthetic services;
  • Ambulance services;
  • psychiatric, physical and occupational therapy and rehabilitation;
  • Other expenses shall consist of all reasonable and necessary expenses, other than medical expense and work loss, up to $25 per day for a period of one year from the date of the accident causing injury.
  • any other professional health services

Does No Fault cover lost wages?

Yes

  • 80% of Lost wages up to a maximum payment of $2,000 per month for a maximum period of three years from the date of the accident:

Will my no fault benefits based on time alone?

These medical expenses will not be subject to a time limitation, provided that, within one year after the date of the accident, it is ascertainable that further medical expenses may be sustained as a result of the injury.

    What is the minimum amount of no fault benefits?

    By law, every New York automobile insurance policy has to provide for a minimum of $50,000 in no fault benefits.  For a small additional premiuim, a person can purchase additional personal injury protection or APIP which increases the coverage to $150,000. Check your insurance policy to see if you have APIP and call your agent and ask that this coverage be added to your policy if it isn’t there.

    How do I go about obtaining No Fault benefits?

    Read about that in Part II of this series.