How to Deal with Insurance Companies After a New York Motorcycle Accident

motorcycle accident in new york - motorcycle accident claim

Dealing with an insurance company after a New York motorcycle accident can be complicated. Why? New York’s insurance rules are different for motorcyclists than for other drivers. Second, injuries tend to be more severe in motorcycle accidents, meaning higher costs associated with medical expenses. Additionally, there may still be biases and stereotypes about motorcycle riders that can influence how an adjuster values a motorcycle accident claim.

As an injured rider, how can you overcome the challenges of recovering the money you deserve? Start with a careful case evaluation from the legal team at Finz & Finz, P.C. Our New York motorcycle accident attorneys understand how the system works and can help you fight for the compensation you deserve following a collision with a careless motorist.

Arrange a free motorcycle case evaluation today to discuss your case with a knowledgeable attorney. Contact the office of Finz & Finz, P.C. at 855-TOP-FIRM to learn about your rights and legal options.

New York No-Fault Rules and Motorcyclists

Unlike most other states, New York is one of only a few jurisdictions following a no-fault car insurance system. Under no-fault car insurance rules, if you are injured in a car accident, you file an insurance compensation claim with your insurance provider, not the at-fault driver’s insurer. Your personal injury protection or PIP insurance typically covers reasonable and necessary medical expenses, a portion of your lost wages, and reasonable household expenses.

To file a personal injury lawsuit to recover compensation after a car accident, injured individuals must meet New York’s “serious injury” threshold. Car accident victims may be eligible to file a personal injury lawsuit against a careless driver who was responsible for causing any of the following injuries:

  • Significant disfigurement
  • Bone fracture
  • Permanent limitation of the use of a limb or body organ
  • Permanent limitation of the use of a bodily system or body function
  • Significant limitation of the use of a bodily system of body function
  • Full disability for at least 90 days

However, motorcycle riders and passengers are exempt from New York’s no-fault coverage rules. Motorcyclists can seek fair compensation through an injury claim or personal injury lawsuit to recover money following an accident with a careless driver. Additionally, due to New York’s exemption for riders, motorcyclists and their passengers are not required to meet the state’s “serious injury” threshold.

The no-fault exception for motorcyclists can be a double-edged sword. If you are injured in a motorcycle collision, the no-fault insurance coverage will not be available to pay your medical expenses and other financial losses. However, no matter the severity of your injuries, you can file a personal injury lawsuit seeking compensation.

Getting the insurance payments you need in New York after a motorcycle crash can be challenging. How do you know where to turn for fair compensation following a wreck caused by another driver? The legal team at Finz & Finz, P.C. can review your situation and help you pursue maximum compensation.

Motorcycle Insurance Coverage Requirements

Although no-fault coverage does not extend to New York motorcycle riders, the state requires motorcyclists to carry specific minimum coverage. You must have liability insurance coverage to register any vehicle in the state legally. The DMV can suspend your registration and driver’s license without this coverage. Minimum liability coverage requirements are:

  • $10,000 property damage for a single accident
  • $25,000 for bodily injury and $50,000 for death for one person involved in an accident
  • $50,000 for bodily injury and $100,000 for death for two or more people involved in an accident

These coverage guidelines must remain in effect for as long as your motorcycle’s registration is valid, regardless of how often you operate the vehicle.

How to Deal with an Insurance Company While Fighting Your Motorcycle Accident Claim

Unfortunately, successfully resolving a motorcycle accident claim with an insurance company and recovering the money you deserve can be challenging. It may feel like numerous hurdles are in your way, including the severity of your injuries and the general attitude some adjusters take toward motorcycle accident victims. In some instances, there is still a bias against motorcycle riders. Some adjusters view riders as “outlaws,” “risky drivers,” or “dangerous.” This portrayal of riders as thrill-seeking and reckless can impact the overall value of your claim, diminishing the amount of money you could receive.

New York follows a pure comparative fault system in personal injury cases. Under pure comparative fault, your compensation can decrease by the same amount of responsibility you bear for causing a collision. Although the rule only binds court decisions, adjusters use the comparative fault model to help guide them on the value of a claim. That means that if they can pin more blame on your shoulders by painting bikers as “risky” or “dangerous,” the value of your motorcycle accident claim could be in jeopardy.

You can protect yourself from the seemingly unfair tactics of an insurance company by:

  • Documenting the scene as thoroughly as possible
  • Keeping all medical bills and documentation of medical treatment
  • Avoiding giving the insurance company a recorded statement
  • Contacting an attorney immediately

The best way to counter an insurance company’s potentially unfair tactics is to contact a New York motorcycle accident attorney as soon as possible. An attorney can manage communication between you and the insurer while collecting evidence to strengthen your claim. An attorney can also negotiate for maximum compensation on your behalf.

The insurance company is a for-profit entity concerned about keeping profits high and payouts low. Your best interests are not central to their business model. Protect yourself by enlisting the help of an aggressive and knowledgeable motorcycle accident attorney before you accept any settlement offer.

Speak with a New York City Motorcycle Accident Attorney Now

At Finz & Finz, P.C., we aren’t afraid to go head-to-head with an insurance company for the compensation you deserve. A motorcycle accident can cause life-long physical and financial complications. Unfortunately, New York’s motorcycle insurance coverage policies can make it difficult for riders to understand their rights. Don’t take on the challenge alone. Let our legal team fight for you.

Arrange to meet with an experienced New York motorcycle accident attorney for a free case review. Contact our office today at 855-TOP-FIRM.


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Finz & Finz, P.C. is a New York and Long Island personal injury law firm based out of Mineola, NY. It was founded in 1984 and is highly rated, with many honors and awards of excellence.