In New York State, every car or truck that is legally on the road is covered by “No-Fault” insurance. That means that if a person is involved in an accident, their No-Fault carrier (their automobile insurance company for the car or truck they were driving) will pay for up to the first $50,000 dollars of lost wages and/or medical expenses.
Unfortunately, New York Motorcyclists who are injured in a crash are not protected under the New York State “No Fault Laws”. Unlike drivers who are injured in a car truck crash, if a motorcyclist sustains an injury regardless of fault, their motorcycle insurance does not have an obligation to pay for lost wages or medical bills. This is often times shocking to motorcyclists and the consequences can be devastating.
Because No-Fault doesn’t apply to motorcycles, if an injured motorcyclist has no health insurance they’ll have to pay for all their medical bills out of their own pocket, which can be an extraordinary expense. Even if a motorcyclist does have private health insurance, the costs of non-covered treatments and co-pays can add up surprisingly quickly. Many injured motorcyclists simply cannot afford to pay for the treatment they need for their injuries.
The best and often only way a motorcyclist can be reimbursed for their lost wages and/or medical expenses is to bring a lawsuit against the person and/or company (hereinafter referred to as “wrongdoer”) that caused their injuries.
In a personal injury lawsuit the motorcyclist’s attorney will “sue” the wrongdoer who caused their injuries in an effort to recovery a monetary value for their lost wages, medical expenses and pain and suffering/loss of enjoyment of life.
The vast majority of the time, the wrongdoer who is sued has their own automobile insurance policy. The wrongdoer’s automobile insurance company will defend them and ultimately if the motorcyclist’s attorney is successful in the case against the wrongdoer the wrongdoer’s insurance company will have to compensate the motorcyclist for lost wages, medical expenses and/or pain and suffering/loss of enjoyment of life.
However, unfortunately, in most cases the motorcyclists will not receive any compensation for lost wages, medical expenses and/or pain and suffering/loss of enjoyment of life while the lawsuit is pending, because New York motorcyclists are exempt from receiving No Fault Benefits. Therefore, the motorcyclists would have to wait until the end of the lawsuit to be paid by the wrongdoer’s insurance company regardless of fault. The amount of time a lawsuit takes to settle or go to trial varies from weeks to years, every case is different, which often times leaves the motorcyclist in a bad situation.
In the event of a motorcycle crash, the motorcyclist should immediately consult with a personal injury attorney who offers free consultations to discuss their options.
Don’t delay; call Mainetti & Mainetti’s Kingston office at 845-600-0000 for a free consultation.