New York has a 30 day rule in reporting auto accidents. That means an injured party must make a claim for medical expenses and lost income within 30 days of the accident. An injured person’s failure to claim in that period will result in an automatic denial of medical and lost earnings benefits.
New York’s No Fault law mandates that every auto policy provide insurance for medical, other expenses, and lost income, and this coverage is available to people injured by a covered vehicle. Such insurance is provided without regard to proving either fault, responsibility or freedom from fault. Hence, this coverage is known as “No Fault”. It is also known as Personal Injury Protection or “PIP”, and it is referred to as such on the insurance policy declaration page.
Each injured party is assured a minimum of $50,000 in medical insurance and lost income protection. Some car owners purchase additional coverage. Only in the most serious cases does an injured person exhaust the $50,000 coverage. Generally, the $50,000 is more than adequate to pay the medical bills and lost income.
New York recently reduced the injured person’s time to 30 days in which he must apply for these benefits. The insurance industry lobbied long and hard for this shortened time period which resulted in a protracted court battle testing the legality of this rule. Therefore, insurance companies will be very strict in applying this deadline. Although the law allows late filing under extraordinary circumstances, the insurance company is the initial judge as to whether the filing will be accepted. It is anticipated that only in the most glaring and obvious cases will the insurance company’s decision be overturned by a court. An injured person should never gamble that the insurance company will accept a late filing.
Therefore, it is imperative that an injured party hire an attorney as soon as possible so that a No Fault claim can be filed timely. A client will be punished for delaying with the denial of medical and lost income claims.
If you have any questions or have been involved in an accident, please contact our office by calling (800) 581-1434.