By: John Blythe
Automobile accidents are never an enjoyable experience. If the driver at fault is uninsured, a victim may have additional concerns regarding their options. Fortunately, legal remedies are available to help properly compensate victims of accidents caused by uninsured motorists. You are likely entitled to no-fault benefits if you were injured in the State of New York due to a motor vehicle accident. No-fault benefits can pay for the costs associated with medical treatment. You may have time lost from work and out-of-pocket expenses due to a motor vehicle accident. Call us to discuss financial compensation if you were involved in an uninsured or underinsured motorist accident.
New York Automotive Insurance
New York Insurance Law § 3420(f) requires all in-state car insurance policies to provide $25,000 in coverage for accidents caused through the fault of an underinsured or uninsured motorist. Uninsured motorists include; drivers who do not carry insurance, drivers whose insurance carrier has denied coverage, drivers whose insurance limit is insufficient to compensate for a victim’s injuries, and hit-and-run drivers fully.
Additionally, many insurance companies offer supplementary uninsured/underinsured motorists insurance (SUM) for bodily injury sustained in New York or Canada. SUM policies protect the insured and members of his or her household by covering bodily injuries caused by an at-fault, uninsured driver. To be considered a member of the insured’s household, New York courts have held that the victim should have resided with the insured and held “some degree of permanence and intention to remain” there.
Pitfalls of Supplementary Uninsured/Underinsured Motorists Insurance
Unfortunately, certain pitfalls may lead to SUM coverage being denied. An accident victim must notify his or her insurance carrier as soon as practicable. Also, a victim’s carrier must approve any settlement between the accident victim and the at-fault driver. A carrier must be able to ensure that other alternatives have been exhausted, including whether the at-fault driver has other insurance sources available to pay for the accident. Fortunately, obtaining written confirmation of the at-fault driver’s policy limits can often satisfy this second step.
Claims involving SUM coverage are resolved through arbitration. This can offer the advantages of being faster and more efficient than the court system. Fortunately, this means that accident victims can be compensated and continue on with their lives more quickly.
Call our personal injury attorneys if you were involved in an uninsured or underinsured motorist accident.
The personal injury attorneys of Hach & Rose, LLP advocate for accident victims in New York. If an at-fault, uninsured motorist has injured you, you could be eligible to receive compensation beyond that obtained from the other driver. Call our law firm at (212) 779-0057 to speak with a New York City car accident attorney about your options.