When you get into an auto accident, one of the first questions that may come to mind is, “Who will pay for my damages?” The answer to this question can depend on many factors, including the circumstances of the collision and the parties involved, but a major influence will be whether you live in a fault or no-fault state. This is the question that, regardless of fault for your crash, will decide whose insurance company will pay for your damages. Navigating the fault laws in Idaho is one of the first steps you will need to take toward recovery after a collision. Speak to a Meridian accident attorney if you have more questions about Idaho’s laws regarding traffic accidents.
What Is a No-Fault State?
Only 12 states abide by no-fault insurance laws. In no-fault states, drivers involved in car accidents do not need to determine fault. It will not matter which driver caused the collision; both drivers will seek reimbursement for their damages from their insurance providers regardless. No-fault insurance laws mean each driver may only file a claim to damages with his or her insurance company, not the other driver’s insurer.
In no-fault insurance states, all drivers must purchase personal injury protection (PIP) insurance. This covers the policyholder’s medical bills after an auto accident. In exchange, drivers have peace of mind that as long as they have the proper insurance, they will receive coverage for crash damages without needing to prove someone else’s fault. It will not matter whether the at-fault driver sticks around, has insurance or disputes fault. The victim will receive a check for damages through his or her own insurance provider regardless.
Is Idaho a No-Fault State?
No, Idaho is not a no-fault state. Like most states in the U.S, Idaho abides by fault-based insurance laws. A fault or tort-based insurance system requires all parties involved in a car accident to determine fault for the crash before filing insurance claims with that party. Idaho’s fault laws mean you must identify which driver caused the crash and file a damage claim with that person’s insurance provider. You may need to gather evidence to prove fault if the other driver’s insurance company tries to refute liability.
It will be up to you or your personal injury lawyer in Meridian to prove the other driver’s fault if he or she does not openly admit to causing the wreck. Most insurance companies advise their policyholders never to admit fault, so it is common to encounter an at-fault party that disputes liability. Calling the police from the scene of an auto accident can help you establish evidence of the other driver’s fault. Providing the other driver’s insurer with a police report that states the driver was speeding, on the wrong side of the road or otherwise in the wrong at the time of the wreck will generally be proof enough for the insurance provider to offer a settlement.
Idaho’s Car Insurance Requirements
If you get into a crash with a driver that does not have insurance, and that driver was at fault for the wreck, you may need to rely on your own insurance coverage to pay for your property damage repairs and medical costs. The required amounts of insurance in Idaho are $25,000 per person and $50,000 per accident in bodily injury and death liability, as well as at least $15,000 in property damage liability. Your insurance may not cover your damages if you do not carry optional uninsured/underinsured motorist insurance. In these situations, you may need to fall back on a personal injury claim for compensation instead.
Bringing a lawsuit against the at-fault driver or another entity, such as a vehicle part manufacturer or the city government, could result in compensation for your losses even if the at-fault driver does not have insurance. Idaho’s fault-based laws allow crash victims to file lawsuits for their damages. In no-fault states, on the other hand, injuries must meet a certain threshold to give the victim the right to file a lawsuit. A lawyer can help you navigate Idaho’s fault-based insurance laws after a crash.