The law in New York requires that drivers have a license before getting behind the wheel of a vehicle. They have to register their vehicle and carry adequate liability insurance, in addition to personal injury protection (PIP) insurance that provides no-fault medical coverage.
Your PIP protects you regardless of who is at fault for the crash, but the policy of the driver who causes the wreck pay for the rest of your expenses. Whether you carry the minimum amount of $50,000 worth of PIP coverage or have invested in more, serious injuries that force you to take a leave of absence from work could leave you with uncovered expenses.
You will need to make a claim against the other driver’s policy for those excess costs. What happens if they are not insured?
Most New York drivers have insurance
The good news is that your risk of encountering an uninsured driver lower in New York than in most other parts of the country. New York has the third-lowest percentage of uninsured drivers, with only 4.1% of drivers having no coverage based on 2019 data.
If you do encounter one of these uninsured drivers, then you will only have your own PIP coverage for your medical costs and lost wages. If you added uninsured driver coverage to your policy or carried collision coverage, you may have the ability to claim against your own policy for the damage to your vehicle. Otherwise, going to court may be your only option.
Civil lawsuits help those hurt by uninsured drivers
One of the reasons everyone carries liability insurance is that it protects a driver against the risk of a lawsuit if they are at fault for a wreck.
You may be able to take the other driver to court for your uncovered losses when they don’t have an insurance policy. You may also be able to bring a claim against a third party, like their employer or a business that contributed to the crash by turning out unsafe products. Only by looking at every avenue for compensation will those hurt by an uninsured driver be able to cover all of their costs.
Knowing the right steps to take after a New York car crash will help you minimize the losses you suffer after a collision.