"Serious Injury" Threshold in a No-Fault Car Accident Case

“Serious Injury” Threshold in a No-Fault Car Accident CaseIf you have been injured in a car accident, you may wonder what your options are. You may have many questions about where you can turn after an accident and get the compensation that you deserve. Something known as No-Fault Insurance comes into play in No-Fault States, which is used to cover injuries to the policyholder resulting from an accident. When you have this special coverage, your own insurance company will pay for things like qualifying medical injuries, lost wages after an accident no matter fault, and even funeral expenses if necessary. If your injuries exceed limits, then you may be able to collect compensation from the at-fault party if there was one involved in the accident.

In a no-fault state, you are urged to use the no-fault system, as injuries are covered up to a certain amount and these laws are specifically put in place for just that. However, there are certain ways to step outside the bounds of the no-fault system. For instance, you will be able to file a liability claim against the at-fault driver if your accident resulted in very serious injuries. But what constitutes a serious injury?

The Serious Injury Threshold

Many types of injuries may fall under a “serious injury.” However, each state views them differently. Take, for example, a no-fault state that requires drivers to carry mandatory personal injury protection coverage, which will pay up to an outstanding $10,000 for all injuries stemming from a car accident. However, this does not cover everything, as there are limitations. The amount paid will only cover up to 80% of necessary medical treatment, for instance. A serious injury usually constitutes significant and permanent loss of an important bodily function, permanent injury within a reasonable degree of medical probability, significant and permanent scarring or disfigurement, or even death.

However, if your injuries do not qualify, you won’t be able to collect damages for non-economic losses such as pain and suffering. You will also have to file a third-party claim for property damage in many states when it comes down to it. If your injuries were a result of an intentional act or occurred while under the influence, they will probably not be covered. So, let’s say that you are limited. Let’s say that your injuries do not qualify.

What Happens if my Injuries do not Qualify?

  • You will not be able to collect damages for non-economic losses such as pain and suffering.
  • Property damage will not be covered. You will have to take this up with the at-fault driver’s insurance carrier or go through your own collision coverage if you have it.
  • If you were racing, driving a stolen car, or another illegal activity, do not expect your injuries to qualify.
  • Damages above $50,000 per person are not recoverable.

The Definition Will Sometimes be Vague

You may still be lost on whether or not you have a qualifying “serious” injury. This is because the wording used may be a little vague to understand. For instance, what is “significant” disfigurement? How much limitation of a bodily function constitutes a claim? You may wonder but have no idea where to turn for answers. If you believe that your case is a very serious injury and that you believe a claim will do well outside of a no-fault system, then you can take action. However, it is always a good idea to have an attorney on your side that you can trust. Call Welebir Law today for more information on what you should do in regards to your claim.

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