Insurance claims following an auto accident in Kentucky fall under the state requirement of no-fault personal injury protection (PIP)coverage for each driver, unless they can successfully petition the state for an exemption.
Injured passengers are covered under this policy arrangement as well, and all initial claims are made with the owner of the vehicle they were riding in, who then reports it to their insurance provider.
This means that other motorists are not necessarily liable for the injuries they cause, unless the injury is serious and the vehicle owner’s insurance is insufficient to cover the entire damage amount.
This makes auto accident cases complicated to a certain degree, especially regarding general damages because a state court must approve any further damage pursuit from third parties. This is also why it is imperative to have an experienced and aggressive Kentucky car accident lawyer to represent your claim.
Negotiating a Settlement with Your Insurance Company
The first problem with auto insurance claims in Kentucky is that the injured driver is negotiating with their own insurance company. This gives the insurance carrier an opportunity to make a low settlement offer and inform the claimant that they have no basis for a general damages claim. This can be a real advantage for the insurance company if they happen to also insure any other drivers involved in the accident who could be pursued for general damages for long-term pain and suffering. This is also information that the insurance provider may want to suppress.
Additionally, the minimum standard for PIP insurance in Kentucky is $10,000, which can be easily exceeded when accident medical bills are calculated.
Statute of Limitations
The Kentucky auto accident claim filing time period is two years from the time of the accident per KRS 304.39-230. However, the question is really about when the clock starts for the filing period.
If an injured claimant does not immediately realize they were injured, the time frame begins when the injury is recognized. The problem in these claims is that the delay gives the insurance company a reason to deny and claim the injury is not connected to the accident. This also provides another scenario where a car accident lawyer will be needed.
Pursuing Third-Party Damages
The state court system in Kentucky reserves the authority to deny a personal injury lawsuit even when total damages are beyond the scope of PIP or vehicle owner liability limits.
A driver’s very own insurance company may be the party attempting to stop this legal action, especially if they are a big box company that has insured other drivers involved in the collision.
Standard PIP insurance coverage does not allow for general non-economic damages even though they are classed as compensatory. Long-term damages for ongoing medical issues can only be recovered in a third-party lawsuit requesting additional compensation for medical bills, lost wages, and any general damages for life-long problems that can also include mental anguish.
General Damage Limitations
All insurance companies want to avoid general damages because these expenses can really add up. And in Kentucky, they can only be pursued when the state allows the lawsuit and the insurance providers cannot successfully argue against it.
There is also a monetary threshold for general damages in Kentucky, beyond just having a qualifying claim based on total damages. The impasse on all auto accident injury cases is the unwillingness of the insurance provider to pay whole benefits for injured claimants. Their priority is always reducing the claim payouts regardless of extent of injury to the claimant.
Never attempt to handle your own accident case in Kentucky without first consulting with an experienced lawyer. Whole compensation recovery is always a battle, and you will need a legal professional for fair compensation.
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