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What is “Personal Injury Protection” Insurance Coverage in New York?

doctor looking at an x-ray after a car accidentCar accidents that result in personal injuries can be life changing. Physically and emotionally, treatment, recovery and the impact on one’s life from the effects of a serious injury caused by the negligence of another can be challenging. Having to also deal with bills for medical treatment, lost wages and other expenses can be overwhelming.

If you’ve been involved in a car accident, one of the first questions you may ask is how medical bills will be paid, and how lost wages will be recovered. Will the medical providers have to wait for a lawsuit to brought and resolved? How will I pay bills while I’m out of work and don’t have income?

Fortunately, drivers, passengers, and pedestrians struck by a car registered in New York have some protection under the policy of insurance on the car. The coverage under the policy is known as Personal Injury Protection (PIP), commonly known as No Fault coverage.

Understanding No Fault Benefits (PIP) under New York Law

In 1974, the New York State Legislature, as the result of lobbying and work of numerous groups, including consumer groups, insurance companies and other interests, enacted legislation that required insurance companies that wrote coverage on New York insured vehicles to provide coverage for medical bills, lost wages and miscellaneous expenses. The intent of the legislation was to relieve the injured person and his family from the burden of having to be saddled with payment of thousands of dollars in medical bills during the period of time that he the victim dealt with injury and might be disabled from work. In addition, the law provided for payment of at least a portion of lost wages, to help ensure that other bills could be paid while the injured person was unable to work.

The name “No Fault” came about because the benefits are available to the insured and any passenger and even a pedestrian struck by the car, without regards to who, if anyone, was at fault in causing injury. Each covered individual is provided with a mandatory $50,000 in coverage for payment of medical bills, lost wages and miscellaneous expense. The policyholder also could purchase additional coverage for a relatively small premium, known as APIP (Additional Personal Injury Protection).

No Fault benefits typically provide complete coverage for medical bills. However, often some portion of lost wages is not covered, as the protection extends only to 80% of gross wages up to $2,000 per month. Miscellaneous expenses, such as payments made for lawn care or mileage to and from doctors’ offices is capped at $25.00 per day. Medical bills and lost income that exceed the available No Fault coverage can be claimed in a personal injury lawsuit.

What Does Personal Injury Protection Insurance Cover?

PIP provides coverage for medical bills, lost wages, and miscellaneous expenses – though there are some limitations.

For more information about PIP coverage for medical expenses following an accident, please refer to our article about how your medical bills will be paid if you are injured in a car accident.

You’ll find additional details about PIP coverage of lost wages after you’ve been involved in an accident in our article about lost wages and no fault insurance coverage limits.

How Do I Become Eligible to Use PIP Coverage After an Accident?

In order to establish a claim with your insurance company and become eligible for payment of No Fault benefits, each person who receives medical care must file an application, which is available from the insurance company. It is important to note that an application for No Fault benefits must be filed with the insurance company within 30 days of the accident.

As described above, No Fault benefits extend only to medical bills, lost wages, and some expenses. To obtain compensation for pain and suffering, long term disability, and medical bills not paid once No Fault benefits are exhausted, it is important to contact an experienced personal injury attorney as soon as possible after the accident.

Injured in a Car Accident? Call the Car Accident Attorneys at Anderson, Moschetti & Taffany.

At Anderson, Moschetti & Taffany, the attorneys are experienced in handling all kinds of car accident cases in Albany, Schenectady, Troy, Saratoga and throughout the Capital Region. With more than 90 years of combined experience, Jeffrey Anderson, Peter Moschetti and David Taffany have the knowledge and resources necessary to obtain full compensation for you following a car accident.

Learn more about the benefits of working with a small personal injury law firm like Anderson, Moschetti & Taffany here. Interested in learning more about the services we offer? You can view a list of our practice areas here, and review some of the record setting verdicts and settlements we’ve obtained for past clients here.

If you’ve been injured in a car accident and you believe someone else may be at fault, give us a call today at (518) 785-4900 or contact us online to set up a free consultation and case review. There is no cost or obligation.

Looking for more information about no fault insurance? Read our article about no fault insurance in New York State for more details about how medical bills will be covered if you’ve been injured in a car accident.

Injured as a bicyclist or pedestrian? You can find more details about how New York no fault insurance applies to bicyclists and pedestrians specifically here.

Editor’s Note: This content was originally published in 2016, but has been updated as of June 2018.

David J. Taffany

About David J. Taffany

Mr. Taffany is an personal injury lawyer and a founding member of Anderson, Moschetti & Taffany, PLLC in Albany. He specializes in all types of personal injury and wrongful death cases, including complex medical malpractice, products liability and labor law. Read More About David J. Taffany »