Utah car insurance runs on a partial no-fault principle. Nolo’s Law Dictionary defines it as “a type of automobile insurance required by law in [Utah], in which the persons injured in an accident are paid only basic damages… by the company that insured the vehicle in which they were riding or by which they were hit.” In other words, those involved in car accidents are eligible for compensation even if their behavior contributed to it.
After her accident, Gina received immediate medical attention because of her no-fault insurance.
After a minor accident with another car, Kirk went to a chiropractor. He did not have any major injuries as a result of the accident, only some minor whiplash, so his total medical bill as a result of the accident did not exceed $3,000. Because he had personal injury protection insurance, his insurance company paid for his chiropractic visits until he could get the at-fault driver’s insurance company to pay his insurance company back. In the end, Kirk’s insurance rates did not increase and he did not have to deal with any lawsuits.
Other Important Information
Because Utah is a no-fault state, drivers are required by Utah law to purchase a minimum of $3,000 worth of personal injury protection (PIP) insurance, but you may purchase additional coverage of $5,000, $10,000 or even $100,000. This law allows you to receive immediate medical attention after your accident without having to wait for the at-fault driver’s insurance company to accept liability. If you are not responsible for the accident, the at-fault driver’s insurance company will reimburse your insurance company for any PIP expenses they pay, and you will not face increased premiums. Utah is only considered a partial no-fault state because drivers can seek compensation for any damages above $3,000. Utah’s status as a no-fault state should not be seen as a free ride for those whose reckless actions cause or worsen car accidents. What this means for the insured is merely that they cannot seek compensation from the other driver’s insurance company by litigation until the damages exceed $3,000. Because personal injury protection is required, anyone in a car accident is already entitled to up to $3,000 from their own insurance before they appeal to the other side. In fact, a Utah law makes it clear that even in cases where the other driver is not properly insured, the injured party is not to be sent away empty handed. It just becomes a personal expense of the one responsible, rather than a matter to take up with their insurance. No-fault legislation as it has been adopted in Utah is not designed to put an end to personal injury litigation; it simply seeks to reduce legal costs.
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