Personal Injury Protection in New York State
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New York is a no-fault insurance state. As such, motorists within this state are legally required to carry Personal Injury Protection.
Personal Injury Protection (PIP) provides medically related benefits for injuries that drivers and passengers sustain as a result of a car accident, regardless of who is at fault.
What Does Personal Injury Protection Cover?
Personal Injury Protection covers three basic things:
- Medical costs
- Financial losses
In regard to medical costs, PIP will cover virtually all injuries that are sustained in a car accident, including:
- Emergency room visits
- Doctors visits
- Medical supplies (wheelchairs, walkers, crutches, etc)
- Diagnostic testing, such as X-rays, MRIs, and CT scans
- Ambulance transfers
- Physical therapy
- Dental treatments
If a driver or passenger is unable to work as a result of the injuries that were sustained in a collision, Personal Injury Protection will cover economic losses. It will cover 80 percent of the monthly earnings that are lost, or up to $2,000 per month, whichever amount is less. This amount will be paid for a period of three years or less after the accident occurred.
You will also receive $25 a day if you are unable to attend to daily chores as a result of the injuries that were sustained in an accident; for example, if you are unable to do your laundry, clean your house, or go grocery shopping and have to pay someone else to do these chores, you will receive compensation under PIP.
Should a driver or passenger perish in an accident, PIP will issue up to $2,000 to assist with the cost of a funeral and burial.
Should you wish to have financial protection, you can purchase additional Personal Injury Protection. Doing so will increase your limits, but it will also increase your premiums.
The Cost of Personal Injury Protection in New York State
Just like the cost of any other type of insurance coverage will vary in the state of New York (or any other state), so does the cost of Personal Injury Protection. As always, there are several factors that are taken into consideration when the cost of PIP is determined. This includes your age, your driving record, the type of vehicle, you drive, and where reside.
For an example, a 30-year old unmarried man can expect to pay an average of $110 (without a deductible), while a married couple in their mid-40s can expect to pay an estimated $140 (without a deductible).
Do You Need Additional PIP Coverage?
New York State provides some of the highest minimum limits on PIP in the nation. As such, you may be wondering if additional coverage would be worth your while. It depends.
The cost of medical expenses that are associated with a motor vehicle collision can be quite costly, which means that if you are involved in an accident, your medical care may quickly exceed the limits under Personal Injury Protection. If you have good health insurance coverage, additional PIP may not be worth your while; however, if your health insurance is less than optimal, additional PIP may be worth the investment.
You also have the option to purchase Optional Basic Economic Loss (OBEL) coverage. This coverage will provide you with an extra $25,000 in benefits, and those benefits can be put toward your lost wages, as well as your medical expenses. Depending on the extent of your injuries and how long you will be unable to work as a result of those injuries, OBEL could be a wise investment. Considering the fact that your wages lost benefits are only covered up to $50,000, if you will be disabled for longer or will experience a substantial reduction in your monthly wages with basic PIP coverage than OBEL coverage would be beneficial.
Filing a Personal Injury Protection Claim
It’s important to know when and how to file a PIP claim, as this knowledge will help to ensure that reimbursement won’t be delayed.
In the State of New York, you will have 45 days after the date your medical treatment commences to file for repayment. You will attain proof of your treatment from the medical doctors who are treating you, and that proof will have to be submitted to your insurance company. The written proof should highlight that the injuries were, in fact, caused by an accident, and the extent of those injuries, as well as the type of treatment you are receiving.
For lost wages, you will have 90 days to file a claim in the State of New York. You will need to submit proof of your lost wages, and that proof will need to be put into writing. Once you file a claim, your insurance company will have 30 days to reimburse you from the date your forms are received.