Often car accidents result in injuries, ranging from mild sprains and bruises to catastrophic and life-changing wounds. In New York, however, the No-Fault Law means not every auto accident injury meets New York’s “Serious Injury Threshold.”
If you’ve been injured in an motor vehicle accident in New York and you are thinking about pursuing a personal injury lawsuit, the first thing to do is figure out whether your injury is serious enough to form the basis of a lawsuit based on New York’s guidelines and standards.
WHAT IS THE NEW YORK STATE SERIOUS INJURY THRESHOLD?
New York has complex laws that limit your ability to seek compensation for car accident injuries. These laws are known as the “New York State Serious Injury Threshold” and this law defines the types and severity of injuries that, if caused by another person, may entitle you to pursue compensation in court.
Even if your injuries seem “serious” to you, the law in New York requires that they fall within one of the definitions in this statute to be pursued in court. If your injuries do not satisfy the threshold set by New York law then negligent driver’s insurance company is not responsible for paying for your damages, and you will have no right to pursue an action in court.
WHAT IS CONSIDERED A SERIOUS INJURY IN NEW YORK STATE?
Section 5102(d) of the New York State Insurance Law defines “serious injury” as any one of the following conditions:
- Significant disfigurement
- Loss of a fetus
- A permanent loss of use of a body organ, member, function or system
- A permanent consequential limitation of use of a body organ or member
- A significant limitation of use of a body function or system
- A “medically determined injury or impairment of a non-permanent nature which prevents the injured person from performing substantially all of the material acts which constitute such person’s usual and customary daily activities for not less than 90 days during the 180 days immediately following the occurrence of the injury or impairment.”