Car crash injury claims in New Jersey is a little different from the majority of U.S. states in that it has a no-fault car insurance system. This means that in a car crash, it doesn’t matter whose fault it was; no personal injury claim can be made unless the injury is serious. You have to claim damages from your own insurance first for medical and other expenses.
No fault car insurance is cheaper than traditional or standard car insurance because it only covers personal injury. For property damage, you need to have additional insurance or you pay for the damages yourself. Other states implementing this system include North Dakota, Michigan, New York, Utah, Minnesota, Kansas, Hawaii, Florida, and Massachusetts. New Jersey residents can choose between a no-fault and standard car insurance policy.
If a car crash results in serious injury which results in dismemberment, disfigurement, permanent injury, or death and the injured party is not at fault, the at-fault driver can be sued for personal injury. So even if New Jersey is a no-fault insurance state, drivers should still carry liability insurance in case of a personal injury claim. Otherwise, the at-fault driver will be solely responsible for paying compensation for serious personal injuries.
When a car crash occurs and both parties are at fault, New Jersey law states that in a personal injury claim where the fault is shared, the plaintiff must be responsible for less than 50% of the accident. The amount will depend on what a jury will decide is the degree of fault of the defendant based on the evidence presented in court. For example, if the jury decides the plaintiff is 20% at fault, the defendant will only be liable for 80% of the monetary award. This is called the modified comparative fault rule.
If a personal injury claim is being considered, a competent car crash lawyer should be consulted as soon as possible. The statute of limitations for filing a personal injury claim is two years from the date of the car crash.