People are often left wondering how an out-of-state car accidents can end up impacting an insurance claim. Is it easier for insurance carriers to deny payouts in these situations? How do you pursue legal action following a crash with an out-of-state driver?
If you or a loved one has been harmed in an out-of-state crash, one of the best things that you can do is speak with an experienced accident lawyer about how you should proceed.
What Constitutes an Out-of-State Car Crash?
Out-of-state car crashes are motor vehicle accidents in which one of the involved drivers does not reside in the state where the crash occurred. For example, a resident of Tennessee who is harmed while traveling in New York has an out-of-state accident claim.
Regardless of whether you are involved in a car crash in the state where you live or somewhere you are not a resident, some of the first steps that you should take include:
- Contact emergency workers including police and/or an ambulance
- Exchange important details including names, addresses, and insurance policy numbers
- Receive a medical evaluation within 24 hours of a crash
- Make sure your insurance carrier is notified about the accident
People often wonder what laws they follow when it comes to car accidents. You follow the regulations of the state where the accident occurred. You should be aware of the laws of the state in which you are driving because these are the laws that you will be subject to when you file a claim.
Out-of-State Car Insurance Claims
Fortunately, the fact that you were involved in a car crash in another state will not influence your insurance claim. This is because nearly all motor vehicle insurance policies cover policyholders when they travel to any of the 50 states or territories including Puerto Rico. Some motor vehicle policies in the United States will also provide coverage if you are involved in an accident in Canada. Unfortunately, most policies do not protect people traveling in Mexico unless they acquire additional coverage. If your address has changed after your most recent premium payment, you should make sure to promptly notify your insurance carrier to update your policy. After filing a claim, if an insurance carrier’s adjuster recommends that the company does not pay because the accident occurred out of state, the insurance might be acting in bad faith.
Pursuing a Personal Injury Claim After an Out-of-State Crash
If the other driver is responsible for the accident, your insurance carrier should compensate your claim and receive compensation from the company with whom the responsible driver has a motor vehicle policy. If it’s the other driver or insurance carrier’s fault, your insurance carrier may decline to issue payment and might even advocate on your behalf.
If you rely on the responsible driver’s liability coverage to pay for things like your medical bills and vehicle damage, you might need to file an insurance claim against the responsible driver’s insurance carrier. If the insurance carrier argues about liability, you might be required to file a lawsuit demanding compensation for your medical costs as well as other losses you incurred from the accident.
Anytime an accident happens in another state, accident litigation often is first filed in the state where the accident happened. In these cases, however, various issues must be considered including:
- State negligence laws. Not all negligence laws are the same between states. Instead, some states have more restrictive negligence laws than others in regards to filing car accident lawsuits. For example, New Jersey is a comparative negligence This means that a plaintiff is unable to receive compensation if they are determined to be 51% or great at fault for an accident. These issues can play a substantial role in the outcome of a case if multiple parties pore responsibility for an accident.
- State statutes of limitation. Each state arranges deadlines for pursuing personal injury lawsuits. Most states permit two or three years from the date of the injury for a person to file a personal injury lawsuit, but if a person waits longer than this the person will be prohibited from pursuing a lawsuit. If a lawsuit involves a government actor, the amount of time that a person has to pursue a lawsuit is often shorter. While it might seem longer, two years is a short time to research an accident and prepare the necessary documentation to file a lawsuit.
- Third-party claims. If you were harmed in an accident caused by a commercial motor vehicle traveling from another state, like a tractor-trailer that was transporting goods, the company that owns the vehicle and retains the driver often will be determined to have legal responsibility for your resulting injuries. You might want to pursue legal action in the state where the company’s principal place of business is located or where the driver lives. Third-party claims can end up playing a critical role when it comes to influencing whether or not you can obtain compensation.
Speak With an Experienced Accident Attorney
If you or a loved one was injured in a car crash, you can benefit greatly from speaking to a skilled personal injury lawyer. During a free case evaluation, a knowledgeable attorney can explain how an out-of-state accident can influence your ability to pursue compensation. Contact the Law Office of Cohen & Jaffe LLP today.
For a free legal consultation, call 516-358-6900The information provided on this website does not, and is not intended to, constitute legal advice; instead, all information, content, and materials available on this site are for general informational purposes only. Information on this website may not constitute the most up-to-date legal or other information and may not be applicable in your jurisdiction.