Kentucky drivers are required by law to carry vehicle insurance. In order to meet this requirement, you need to have at least two types of coverage: bodily injury liability insurance and property damage insurance. The law mandates that your policy meets the following minimums:
- $25,000 for bodily injury, per person.
- $50,000 for total bodily injury, per accident
- $10,000 for property damage
You Also Need PIP or “No-Fault” Coverage
Additionally, Kentucky law requires all car insurance policies to include Personal Injury Protection (PIP) coverage. This is also known as no-fault coverage.
The term no fault can be confusing because in almost all accidents, someone was at fault. But regardless of who’s found responsible for the incident, every Kentucky driver has $10,000 in PIP as part of their auto insurance coverage available to pay for basic services. However, motorcycle policies don’t have PIP coverage.
Think of PIP benefits as a financial cushion immediately available to you following an accident to help with various expenses, such as:
- Medical bills and expenses
- Reimbursable mileage or taxi service to and from doctors’ appointments, as well as a minimal amount for lost wages (up to $200 per week)
- Certain household expenses if you’re unable to perform these tasks yourself after the accident
How PIP or “No-Fault” Coverage Works
After an accident, an injured party simply files a claim for PIP benefits on the covered vehicle, whether they were the driver, passenger, bicyclist, or pedestrian. This claim needs to be filed as soon as you’ve notified your insurance company of the accident.
When a PIP claim is established, you’re issued a claim number. Anytime you see a doctor or undergo diagnostic testing at a hospital or another facility for injuries sustained in the accident, the services are billed under that claim number. It’s important to keep all receipts and to document every expense associated with the accident claim. All PIP funds expended are reimbursed to your auto insurance company by the at-fault party’s insurance company through a subrogation process handled by the carrier.
Once the $10,000 PIP benefits are exhausted to pay for accident-related costs, any remaining medical expenses should be picked up by the injured party’s private health insurance carrier.
Your Right to Additional Compensation
Because Kentucky is a no-fault state and some of your medical expenses have been paid by the PIP coverage, this mandate limits your right to sue and be sued—also referred to as tort rights. This means injured people can’t recover medical expenses, wage loss, other accident-related costs, or pain and suffering from the at-fault party unless their injuries exceed certain thresholds. The thresholds in Kentucky are:
- $1,000 in medical expenses
- A broken bone
- Permanent disfigurement, permanent injury, or death, as these circumstances relate to KRS 304.39-060
So if you meet any of the thresholds mentioned above, you have the right to file a claim against the at-fault party for an amount based on certain variables of your particular accident and resulting injury, including additional medical bills, out-of-pocket expenses, lost wages, and the extent of your pain and suffering.