Motorists Should Review Their Auto Insurance Policies at the Start of a New Year

Binghamton, NY (PRWEB) January 17, 2011

New York drivers should use the start of a new year to review their auto insurance coverage and decide whether it will provide the financial protection they need after a crash, Binghamton car accident attorneyScott C. Gottlieb says.

“Many people purchase the minimum insurance they need to register their car and get their license plates, but you can hit that threshold quickly if you are in an accident – even if it’s a minor one,” Gottlieb says.

“That’s why it’s a good idea to review your policy and assess whether it’s going to be enough to cover your car damage, medical expenses, lost wages and other items if you are involved in an auto accident.”

Gottlieb is an experienced Binghamton personal injury attorney whose law firm, Scott C. Gottlieb, Injury Law Attorney, represents car accident and injury victims throughout Broome County and surrounding New York State communities.

Over the course of his 30-year legal career, Gottlieb says he has observed several instances in which the victim of a car crash caused by another driver’s negligence lacked auto insurance coverage that would adequately compensate them.

New York law requires drivers to purchase:

•      No Fault/Personal Injury Protection (PIP): This provides for up to $50,000 coverage per person for accident-related expenses no matter who was at fault. This covers the driver, passengers and pedestrians. It does not provide coverage to motorists who are driving while intoxicated or driving a motorcycle.
•      Third-party liability: This covers motorists who are sued for causing bodily injury or death to another driver. New York law requires minimum amounts of $25,000 for bodily injury to one person ($50,000 for two or more), $50,000 for death and $10,000 for property damage.

•      Uninsured Motorist (UM): This covers bodily injury suffered when a motorist is in an accident with a driver who has no insurance or is involved in a hit-and-run accident. New York law requires drivers to carry the same minimum UM limits as are required for liability insurance.

According to Gottlieb, a problem may arise when a car accident victim’s damages and expenses go beyond these minimum insurance requirements, such as when expenses exceed a driver’s PIP limits and the at-fault driver’s liability insurance fails to cover the remainder.

When reviewing their auto insurance policies, Gottlieb suggests that New York drivers look into purchasing additional PIP coverage or underinsured motorist (UIM) coverage to protect them in such a situation.

“Insurance issues and disputes with insurance companies can become very complex and contentious, and that’s why it’s important to consult with an experienced New York car accident attorney if you are involved in a car accident,” Gottlieb says.