Am I Covered If I’m Hit By An Uninsured Driver Outside of New York State?

by Friedman & Ranzenhofer, PC on August 25, 2010

in NY Insurance Issues

Given Buffalo’s easy driving distance to Canada and even Pennsylvania and Ohio, it is important for drivers to know if they will be covered if an accident occurs outside of New York State.  The courts in New York State have addressed the issue of how insurance applies to accidents outside of the state.

The Court of Appeals, the highest court in New York State, has held that New York insurance carriers have an obligation to provide uninsured motorist coverage when an accident occurs outside of New York State.  In doing so, the court noted that Insurance Law section 5103(e) requires auto insurers to provide coverage “at least in the minimum amount required by the laws of the (other) state.” 

This responsibility to provide coverage at least meeting the minimum amount required by the other state has generally been interpreted in favor of the insured person.  If the other state or Canadian province requires more insurance than the New York State driver has, insurance companies have been required to raise the amount of coverage provided to the level demanded by the laws of the other jurisdiction.  Conversely, if New York State requires more coverage, the insured person is entitled to the full amount of coverage paid for should it be needed.

If you have been in an accident and have any questions regarding your insurance coverage, please feel free to contact my office at 716-542-5444.      

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