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Selecting Car Insurance in New York

Liability insurance

There are many terms to learn and variables to consider when selecting car insurance. Perhaps you’re new to the state and its unique insurance coverage requirements, or perhaps your financial situation has changed, and you’re wondering if your insurance coverage should change along with it. Below, you’ll find a run-down of information you should consider when selecting car insurance coverage in New York.

Basic requirements and levels of coverage

No-Fault/PIP: New York is a no-fault state for car insurance coverage. What this means is that you will generally file a claim with your own insurer for coverage of your expenses after a crash, even if you were at fault for the accident. Victims of car accidents are not permitted to file a lawsuit based on a car accident unless their damages exceed certain limits in expense or severity. Every driver must carry no-fault, also known as Personal Injury Protection or “PIP” coverage, in the amount of at least $50,000.

Liability: Under the law, every New York driver is required to carry liability insurance in the amount of $25,000 for injuries to a single person, $50,000 in injuries to more than one person in a single accident, and $10,000 for damage caused to property (commonly called 25/50/10 coverage). Where someone is fatally injured, the coverage rises to $100,000 for a single fatality and $200,000 for multiple deaths. Should the victim’s injuries or property damage exceed this amount, they may be able to sue you for the difference. If you have substantial personal assets, such as a home or robust investments, low insurance coverage could result in a loss of these assets to a court judgment.

Uninsured Motorist: If the negligent driver does not carry insurance, carries too little, or flees the scene of the accident, your uninsured motorist coverage pays your damages. The minimum amount of uninsured motorist coverage is identical to the minimum amount of liability coverage: $25,000 for a single person’s injuries, $50,000 for injuries to multiple persons, and $10,000 in property damage. You may wish to purchase supplemental uninsured motorist coverage, which can go up to $250,000 per individual and $500,000 per accident.

Additional, non-mandatory forms of coverage to consider

Collision: This will cover damage to your car from an accident in which you were at fault, after payment of your deductible. In New York, you may be able to recover part of the cost of your repairs if you were only partially at fault, in proportion to how responsible you were for the accident.

Comprehensive: This coverage will ensure your car is repaired or replaced under nearly any circumstance aside from a wreck, including a natural disaster, theft, or vandalism. Often, people with highly valuable cars will purchase this coverage along with collision coverage, which are together known as “full” coverage.

If you have been injured in a car accident and are unsure about how to go about pursuing a claim, contact the knowledgeable Hudson Valley personal injury attorneys at Rusk, Wadlin, Heppner & Martuscello for a free consultation, at 845-331-4100 for our Kingston office or 845-236-4411 for our office in Marlboro.

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