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I ran a red light and hit another car, can i sue their insurance company for personal injuries?

Middletown, NY |

i ran a red light , i hit another car with someone in it who sustained injury, can i sue the other cars insurance for personal injury?

Attorney Answers 11


  1. In order to be successful in suing another driver for personal injuries suffered in a motor vehicle accident, you must prove several things. Importantly, you made no mention of your personal injuries. You must prove that you have injuries that meet a certain threshold in NY. Typically, threshold injuries involve broken bones, scars or a permanent neurologic deficit. You also must prove that the other driver was negligent and that the other driver's negligence caused your injuries. While you may have been negligent in driving through the red light, that does not mean that the other driver was not also negligent and that the other driver may be responsible for a percentage of your injuries.


  2. You would sue the other driver and his carrier would defend and indemnify him. However, given that you ran the red light you are 100% at fault or close to it so I don't see you having much of a case. You also need to have "serious injury" as defined by the Insurance Law.

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  3. First, you don't sue a person's insurance company; ;you sue the at fault person and his/her insurance company will defendant him/her. Secondly, if you ran the red light and there is no fault for the happening of the accident attributable to the other person who you hit, your case is destined to be dismissed. A person only can get compensation from a person if that person is found to be in some way legally at fault for causing the accident. Lastly, you do not mention injuires. In the State of New York, and particularly as applies to auto accidents, you can not collect compensation unless you have proven that you have suffered a "serious injury" as that phrase is defined by the no-fault laws - and that would be so even if the other person were to be at fault for causing the accident.


  4. Your suit is against the other owner and/or operator. The insurer only steps in to indemnify and defend the insured. You should consult a personal injury attorney if you really believe that there is a basis to sue, although you advertise that you illegally ran a red light. Liability of the other party, not just causing you injury, is a necessary component to an injury lawsuit to be viable and successful.

    If you found this "helpful" or "best answer," please click it with my appreciation. My response is for educational purposes and does not constitute legal advice nor creates an attorney client relationship which requires all the details and a personal conference.


  5. Not if the accident was your fault, and you don't meet the serious injury threshold.


  6. You need to prove they were at fault and you sustained a serious injury. Your medical expenses and lost wages will be covered by your insurance under no fault.

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  7. Anyone can start a lawsuit, but the facts may warrant dismissal. First, your personal injuries must meet the serious injury threshold under No Fault law. You will probably want to consult an attorney to determine that. Second, there must be some fault on the part of the other driver that contributed to the accident. If not, you will not likely be successful. Lastly, you should consider your own comparative fault in causing the accident which will diminish your recoverable damages. You indicated that you ran a red light. I am assuming that was a substantial factor in contributing to the accident. If you are 100% responsible for the accident, you should not file suit because the other driver must have some degree of responsibility. Even if you were convicted of running a red light, that may be evidence of negligence, but the other side must still provide that the violation was the legal cause of the accident. If you have very substantial damages, and you are 80% at fault for the accident, recovering 20% of your damages could still be worthwhile to pursue.


  8. If the traffic light was operational, and you were fully at fault, you will not win in an action against the other driver, on the issue of liability or fault. If the other driver was partially at fault, however, you may be able to obtain some recovery for the damage to your car and for your personal injuries, provided the injuries are serious as required by New York State law. Your medical payments will be paid under your policy regardless of fault. You must complete a no fault application and submit it within 30 days from the date of the accident, for payments to be made. Your attorney will assist with all forms.


  9. To have a personal injury action you must have both Liability and Damages. How do you plan to prove the other driver was negligent when you ran the red light?

    Mr. Pascale is licensed to practice law in the State of New York. The response herein is not legal advice and does not create an attorney/client relationship. The response is in the form of legal education and is intended to provide general information about the matter within the question. Oftentimes the question does not include significant and important facts and time-lines that, if known, could significantly change the reply and make it unsuitable. Mr. Pascale strongly advises the questioner to confer with an attorney in their state in order to insure proper advice is received.


  10. First, you do not sue an insurance company, a lawsuit is against the driver and/or owner. If you ran a red light you are at fault. You should not sue.