Is Kentucky a “No-Fault” State?
No-Fault Insurance States
Kentucky is called a no-fault state because of a law stating that each driver has to file a claim with their insurance company first to get compensation for medical bills and other financial losses caused by the accident according to their own insurance policy.
Personal Injury Protection (PIP Insurance)
All motor vehicles in Kentucky must carry personal injury protection coverage, also known as PIP. This does not apply to motorcycles, however.
Up to $10,000 is provided per person for lost wages, medical expenses, and other costs incurred due to injury with PIP coverage.
Residents of Kentucky can decide to pay for higher premiums to receive increased benefits.
Regardless of who was at fault, personal injury protection (PIP) is paid for by the insurer of the vehicle in which the injured occupant is riding at the time the accident occurs.
Pros and Cons of No-Fault Insurance Statues
No-fault laws protect drivers like you and me from civil liability. In layman’s terms, this protects people from being sued for causing an accident if they don’t meet certain thresholds. No-fault laws also speed up the claims process, which means you get compensation faster and the court system doesn’t get bogged down with cases.
Tort Limitations in Kentucky
By operating or registering a motor vehicle in Kentucky you are accepting limitations regarding your ability to sue someone — this also protects you from being sued also.
Kentucky law states that injured parties in car accidents cannot litigate (sue) if certain thresholds are not met. A lawsuit may be brought against the other driver if:
- Medical expenses exceed $1000
- The accident caused the claimant’s permanent disfigurement, fracture of a weight-bearing bone (broken bone); compound, compressed, or displaced fracture of any bone; any permanent injury, or any permanent loss of a body function.
Tip: The no-fault system only applies to injury claims after a car accident; you’re still free to file a vehicle damage claim against the at-fault driver after a car accident.
Choice No-Fault: Declining PIP Coverage
If one of the injured people declined PIP coverage they are no longer bound by the no-fault restrictions.
Kentucky is a “choice no-fault” state which means that drivers can optionally choose to reject PIP coverage. The driver must file a Kentucky No-Fault Rejection Form with the KY Department of Insurance if they choose to decline PIP benefits. In addition to that, if you decline PIP coverage you must still have insurance coverage with the following minimums:
- Bodily injury liability coverage of $25,000 per person/$50,000 per accident, and
- Property damage liability coverage of $10,000 per accident, or
- $60,000 combined liability coverage, and
- Uninsured motorist coverage equal to the minimum bodily injury limits.
Poor Coverage Can Be Costly in Kentucky
Be sure your motor vehicle is properly covered if you live in Kentucky or one of the other states with no-fault insurance laws. Failure to do so can result in not just fines but can also open you up to criminal liability. In layman’s terms, this means you can be charged with a crime if you aren’t insured (e.g. if you don’t have car insurance).
If you or anyone you know has been hurt in an auto accident, you can hire a personal injury attorney to help you recover losses. Hiring a lawyer or law firm will also help cut through the red tape and confusing process associated with filing car accident auto insurance claims with your insurance company and provide you with effective legal advice to maximize the compensation you receive.
List of All No-Fault States (Updated May 2020)
- District of Columbia
- New Jersey
- New York
- North Dakota
- Pennsylvania, and