Car Accident Laws in New Jersey

Car Accident Laws in New Jersey

Have you recently been involved in an accident, or are you interested in what you should do if you experience a car accident in New Jersey? If so, please make sure to take a look at the following article. Here, you will get a better understanding of state laws and regulations.


Reporting an Accident

According to New Jersey law, motorists are obliged to report all vehicle-related accidents involving death, injuries, or property damages that exceed $500. In general, the police should file a report for what happened, especially so if you have contacted law enforcement immediately after the accident. However, keep in mind this is not always the case, meaning that you could have to file a written report within no more than ten days after the accident.

One of the most vital aspects of these reports is that they can be helpful in injury claims. So, it is advisable to stick to the facts as much as possible, as well as try to obtain a copy of the police report.


No-Fault Insurance and New Jersey Laws

It is crucial to mention and keep in mind that New Jersey is a no-fault state. What does this mean? Well, it means that your insurance carrier should cover all your medical bills and any other expenses you may have up to your coverage limit, regardless of who caused the accident you were involved in.

Another crucial thing to consider is that all motorists driving on NJ roads are required to have a so-called PIP or personal injury protection within their insurance policy. That is what covers your damage costs in cases of car accidents. Of course, it is not impossible for your overall expenses to exceed the total PIP coverage. In such cases, you can file a personal injury claim against the at-fault party.

If you have encountered a car crash in NJ, it is always best to contact a lawyer to help you prepare and file any claims you wish to make. At Legal Chiefs, we can connect you with countless experts ready to give you their undivided attention.


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Auto Accident FAQ

Your first and foremost action following an accident is to stay calm, check if you or anyone else involved has been injured, and call the police. Get the name and contact information of all parties involved in the accident as well as any witnesses of the event. To document the damage, take pictures of the accident scene, the vehicles, and your injuries. It’s important not to admit liability until you hire an attorney because they will conduct a thorough investigation to establish the driver at fault.
Right after a car accident, you may feel fine, but injuries can surface days, weeks, and even months later. That’s why it’s good to see a doctor even if you don’t believe you were injured in the accident. Your doctor can recognize issues or injuries that won’t immediately become apparent to you and alert you to warning signs of injuries that may arise due to the accident. If you fail to treat your injuries within a certain period of time, you may forfeit your right to get reimbursement for future medical costs. The general rule is not to settle auto accident claims without having been examined by a medical professional.
In most cases, you won’t have to go to court. The majority of auto accident claims are resolved outside of court after negotiating the terms with the insurer. Most insurance companies generally try to settle claims as quickly as possible and for as little money as possible, so it’s wise to have an attorney negotiate on your behalf.
In addition to taking pictures of the accident scene and taking the contact information of the involved parties and witnesses, your detailed explanation of how the accident happened is also necessary to file a claim. Law enforcement reports of the accident will also serve as crucial evidence in your claim.
Many factors determine the driver at fault in an auto accident case. Do not accept any part of the blame until the investigation has concluded. Even if the investigation finds that you are partially at fault, you may still be entitled to receive compensation. There are cases when the victim also shares part of the blame for an accident. If, for example, you were driving five to ten mph over the speed limit when the accident happened, this would have limited your reaction time, and you could likely be considered a negligent driver even if you weren’t the one to cause the crash. Different states have different ways of settling auto accident claims where more than one driver is at fault. So it’s best to check the specific laws in your state (or the state where the accident took place) or discuss the matter with your auto accident injury lawyer.
It happens surprisingly often that people get into an auto accident where the driver at fault doesn’t have insurance. In these situations, it’s wise to have an auto insurance policy that comes with Uninsured Motorist (UM) coverage. That way, if you get into an accident and the at-fault driver doesn’t have insurance, you will still be able to file your claim under the UM coverage you have with your own insurance company. Your insurer will then process the claim following the same process as it would for an opposing insurer. The only difference is that the claim will be against your UM coverage and not against another driver. Likewise, if you were involved in a hit-and-run accident where the responsible driver fled the scene before you could take their information, you can again seek compensation from your UM coverage.
Suppose you suffered injuries after an auto accident that was caused by another driver’s negligence. In that case, there are two main types of damages that you may seek compensation for: compensatory (a.k.a. monetary) and punitive damages. Compensatory damages are the most common type of damages in a personal injury claim, and they often include: ● Current and future medical bills ● Property damage ● Emotional duress ● Lost wages ● Loss of enjoyment of life ● Loss of future earnings potential On the other hand, punitive damages are much rarer, but they can occur in situations where the vehicle manufacturer is to blame.