Let’s look at how your auto insurance policy can affect your personal injury claim. If you have been injured in a car accident, your ability to recover monetary compensation for the injuries caused by this accident can depend on your automobile insurance policy.
If you live in New Jersey or are a non-resident injured in a car accident that occurred in New Jersey, you are subject to one of two thresholds: (1) “Zero/No Threshold,” or (2) “Limited Right to Sue/Verbal Threshold/Lawsuit Threshold.”
The first policy, the “Zero/No Threshold” policy, allows any person who is injured in a car accident to make a personal injury claim, no matter the extent of the injury. As the policy title implies, there is no threshold, meaning there is no minimum injury requirement in order to receive compensation for your injury. The only dispute will concern the value of your injury. Thus, the dispute with the insurance carrier will concern how much your injury is worth. In these cases, the defending insurance company will take the position, regardless of how injured you may be, that the injury has “little or no value.” Thereafter, the insurance company will make a monetary offer of settlement reflecting their devalued settlement price in hopes that you accept their offer. The attorneys at Puff & Cockerill will defend your injury and fight against the insurance company’s tactics to reach a fair and equitable settlement on your behalf.
The second policy, the “Limited Right to Sue/Verbal Threshold/Lawsuit Threshold” policy, acts as a potential bar to certain types of injuries. In other words, this threshold policy can prevent you (the injured party) from bringing a lawsuit in a personal injury claim, unless the car accident results in the following injuries:
- Significant disfigurement or significant scarring;
- Displaced fractures;
- Loss of a fetus; or
- Permanent injury within a reasonable degree of medical probability, other than scarring or disfigurement.
As a result, the defending insurance company will use the “thresholds” as a defense to your personal injury claim. The insurance company may take a “no-pay” position on the claims it believes do not surpass the above mentioned thresholds, which to no surprise is a vast majority of the claims for injuries. Consequently, the insurance company will not offer any compensation for those personal injury claims. Even when your injuries surpass the threshold, the insurance company will still argue that your injuries have little or no value and it will make a small monetary settlement offer reflecting its position in hope that you accept the offer.
During the past thirty plus years of handling automobile accidents, our attorney’s have observed that most residents in New Jersey are subject to the “Limited Right to Sue/Verbal Threshold/Lawsuit Threshold” policy, largely because the policy is cheaper. Unfortunately, this cheaper threshold policy may (and often does) affect your ability to recover for your injuries. Additionally, this policy may affect your ability to find an attorney willing to take your case.
South Jersey personal injury claim representation
Puff & Cockerill LLC is devoted to aggressively representing people in a personal injury claim, no matter what automobile insurance policy section you selected. We represent people who have been injured in car accidents, regardless of the choice of policy, so long as your case warrants moving forward.
If you have been injured in a car accident or would like to speak with an attorney regarding your car accident, please contact the experienced attorneys at Puff & Cockerill LLC. The attorneys at Puff & Cockerill LLC have handled hundreds of car accident cases and have obtained favorable results on behalf of our clients for their injuries through aggressive representation of our clients no matter what the policy selection is.