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Tort Insurance in North Carolina, What You Need to Know

What Is Tort Insurance

Tort insurance is an insurance system that allows drivers to collect damages from an at-fault driver. Most of the United States, a total of 38 states including North Carolina, utilize a tort insurance system. In these states, the driver who is at fault for an auto accident is responsible for covering the cost of damages of the injured, including

  • medical costs,
  • vehicle damage,
  • lost wages, and
  • pain and suffering.

Is North Carolina A No-Fault State?

In the United States, only twelve states are considered no-fault states.

  • Florida
  • Hawaii
  • Kansas
  • Kentucky
  • Massachusetts
  • Michigan
  • Minnesota
  • New Jersey
  • New York
  • North Dakota
  • Pennsylvania
  • Utah

In these states, drivers are responsible for insuring themselves. After an auto accident, personal injury protection (PIP) or medical payments coverage will pay for medical costs of the policyholder and passengers in their vehicle, regardless of which driver caused, or was at fault for, the accident.

In some no-fault states, like Michigan, mini tort law can be applied to sue in few circumstances, such as death or serious injury. In these cases, a mini tort claim can be filed to seek damages against the responsible party in some no-fault states.

In a tort system, or at-fault system, insurance companies will establish fault based on local definitions of negligence. In North Carolina, a contributory negligence system is in place. Contributory negligence denies the right to collect for damages from another driver if you are found to be at all at fault for the accident.

Proving Fault In A North Carolina Car Accident

North Carolina’s negligent tort laws are some of the strictest in the country. These laws mean a driver must be 100% at fault for the accident in order for the other party to receive damages for the accident. If both drivers are partially responsible for an accident, they lose the right to receive payments for damages from the other party.

For example, if you are driving straight ahead at ten miles over the speed limit and another driver rolls through a stop sign, causing a collision, you may both be found partially responsible. You, for driving over the speed limit, and the other driver, for failing to stop at a stop sign. In states that fall under contributory negligence laws, in this scenario, neither party can seek damages from the other.

If you’ve been the victim of a negligent driver, auto torts and personal injury attorneys have the experience and resources to help you prove fault after a motor tort accident. Evidence used to prove fault may include

  • photographs and videos,
  • eye witness testimony, and
  • police reports.

In North Carolina, to receive money from another driver for injuries and damages, you must be able to prove the accident was 100% the fault of the other driver. A resourceful auto torts attorney will increase your chances of being cleared of any fault, as well as increase your chances of receiving a fair tort claim settlement, as opposed to filing a claim on your own.

Full vs. Limited Tort

When purchasing car insurance in a tort state, you have the choice between full and limited tort insurance. Both allow for damages to be received for out-of-pocket expenses, such as vehicle damages and medical bills. Full tort insurance is more expensive, but it allows the insured to also seek non-economic damages for lost wages and pain and suffering. Limited tort insurance is less expensive, but limits you to only suing for noneconomic damages for serious injuries, such as

  • death,
  • permanent disfigurement or impairment, and
  • dismemberment.

Full tort provides you with more options for seeking damages from the at-fault party after an accident. It is not the same as full coverage insurance. Tort insurance does not include collision, comprehensive, or liability insurance, it just refers to the right to sue for damages.

Negligent vs. Intentional Tort

In tort states, auto accidents are classified under negligent tort. Negligence tort, or unintentional tort, generally is a claim of damages as a result of someone else’s negligence. Negligent tort differs from intentional tort. Intentional tort lawyers represent victims of intentional harm, such as assault, battery, or libel.

Civil Tort Attorney, North Carolina

If you’ve been injured in an auto accident as a result of someone else’s negligence it is important to seek an experienced auto tort attorney, knowledgeable in North Carolina motor tort law. Auto torts and personal injury attorneys will

  • assist you in proving fault for your auto tort claim,
  • fight the insurance company if your auto accident claim is denied,
  • negotiate with insurance companies to get you a fair auto tort settlement, and
  • take your case to court if a fair auto tort settlement cannot be negotiated.

If you have been injured in a motor tort accident don’t let the insurance company take away your right to a fair settlement, contact an experienced auto tort attorney right away. If you’ve been injured in the Raleigh, North Carolina area, contact The Law Offices of Eric H. Kassor, P.A. today.

Eric H. Kassor

Request for a Free Consultation (919) 999-4462
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