New York Car Insurance

Drivers in The Big Apple should know

Like any other countries in the world, especially in the United States of America, New York also has an automobile insurance law. This kind of law does not only protect you, but it also protects other drivers on the road as well. As you continue reading down below, you’ll know more about the New York Car Insurance’s law, penalties for driving without insurance in New York, minimum requirements, and more.

Overview of New York’s Auto Insurance Laws

If you’ve decided to drive behind the wheels in New York, you are required to have a New York Liability Insurance which you’ll have to carry with you at all times when driving. By doing this, it will ensure that you are able to cover the damages to the other driver involved in case you’re involved in a car crash.

When speaking about car insurances, it usually contains two kinds of liability coverage: the bodily injury liability insurance (BIL) and the property damage liability insurance (PDL). The PDL insurance is referred to the vehicle’s damage and even property establishments, while the BIL insurance usually refers to the medical expenses. In the State of New York, both of these coverages are required.

To get liability insurance, you’ll need to look for an agency that is licensed by the New York Department of Insurance. In fact, before you can even register your vehicle in New York, you’ll need to show them first some car insurance proof. Otherwise, the state won’t issue your car’s registration or its plates.

The Minimum Requirements of Car Insurance in New York

Below are the state’s minimums for liability insurances in New York areas. Here are the following:

Bodily Injury Liability

This coverage type covers all the expenses that are related to the death or injury of a driver or pedestrian if the car accident is your fault. For injury, it may cost you $25,000 per person or $50,000 per accident. But if the accident has resulted in some deaths, it would cost you $50,000 per person or $100,000 per accident.

Property Damage Liability

This helps cover all the damages created by the accident you’ve caused, including houses, vehicles, buildings, and other kinds of structures. The limitation for this is $10,000.

Uninsured or Underinsured Motorist Liability

If the accident is caused by an uninsured driver, or by a driver whose liability insurance isn’t enough, this kind of liability will help cover your medical expenses. This requires $25,000 per person or $50,000 per accident.

Personal Injury Protection

If you and your passengers are injured, or if someone in your vehicle died because of the accident, this liability will help cover your funeral or medical expenses. This limits of about $50,000

The No-Fault System in New York

In other countries, they follow the “At-fault system”, it means that whoever caused the accident will pay for all the medical expenses and damages it has caused. But in the state of New York, they follow a system called the “No-Fault System”. It means if you are involved in a car accident, no matter whose fault it was, your insurance company will pay for the damages you have received, including medical expenses.

To put it simply, if you have gotten in a car accident in New York, your insurance company will cover you, while the other person involved will be covered by their own insurance company. The reason why this system is put up in New York is to avoid hiring personal injury lawyers.

This helps reduce the claims and litigations, and even actually makes the car insurance less pricey for everyone. However, if the accident has caused some serious injuries, New York will allow you to ignore the “No-fault” system and hire a personal injury lawyer. So if you are involved in a crash that has caused a serious injury, you are permitted to contact your personal injury lawyer.

Penalties for Driving Uninsured in the State of New York

As we have said earlier, it is required for every driver in New York by law, to have car insurance. Your insurance company will then issue you with an identification card, which you’ll have to carry with you at all times. The penalties for driving uninsured can be quite expensive.

If your coverage has ended, no matter what reason it is such as payment lapse, your insurance provider is required to notify the state by law. In fact, the state would electronically monitor you through your insurance company.

If you are driving without car insurance, or if you have let another person to drive your uninsured vehicle, you could be fined for about $150 to $1,500 by the state. In addition to this, and NY police officer may also order to take your vehicle in custody, and imprison for up to 15 days.

In a more serious case, the DMV or the NY Department of Motor Vehicles could nullify your registration and your driver’s license. In order for you to renew or take back your license, you’ll be required to pay an amount of $750 to the DMV.

However, if your insurance has lapsed for more than 3 months or 91 days, or if you have paid $750 civil penalty within the last 3 years, you are no longer required to pay for the civil penalty, and will just have to simply wait for the suspension period to renew your New York License.

Penalties for the Lapse of Insurance

If you have left your car insurance policy to lapse, whether you haven’t renewed it on time, or if you’ve canceled it without placing a backup policy, your insurer will notify the NY DMV electronically, and your car registration will immediately be suspended.

Once the DMV is notified, they will charge you with a specific amount per day for not reinstating your coverage of insurance. Here are the penalties for the lapse in your coverage:

  • For 1 to 30 days, you’ll be charged for about $8 a day. This would cost $240 for the first 30 days.
  • For 31 to 60 days, you’ll be charged $10 a day. This would cost you $300 for your second set of 30 days.
  • For 61 to 90 days, you would be paying about $12 a day and this would cost $360 for your third set of 30 days.

The total cost if there’s a lapse in your coverage for 90 days, you would be paying around $900. If you fail to pay these penalties, you will have to surrender your plates and your vehicle’s registration, this is until the suspension period is over. If you are planning to buy you’re first ever vehicle in New York, or have just moved to the state, then you should make sure that you have purchased your own car insurance to avoid future complications against the NY DMV.