Connecticut No-Fault Insurance System - What Hartford Drivers Need to Know


The effects of a car crash can be devastating. Car insurance is one of those things that you hope you never have to use. Yet, if you get into a collision in Connecticut, you will need fast and effective help.

Knowing how your insurance policy works is essential. Car insurance is not one-size-fits-all – there is at-fault insurance and no-fault insurance.

The car insurance laws in Connecticut differ from those in some other states. At Gould Injury Law, our aggressively passionate attorneys work with Connecticut drivers to get fast results. First, let’s discuss essential facts you need to know in case you get into a car accident in Hartford, Connecticut.

The Difference Between an At-Fault and a No-Fault State

When there is a car accident, who should pay for the damages? Should your insurance company be involved? The answers depend on where the accident occurred.

At-fault states

Most states are at-fault states, also known as tort states. In legal terms, a “tort” is an act or omission that leads to injury or economic harm. The driver who causes a car accident in an at-fault state is financially responsible for the damages and may have a tort claim filed against them.

Car insurance laws require motorists to carry auto accident coverage, so an insurance company usually pays for damages such as property damage, medical bills, and lost wages. Otherwise, the at-fault driver must pay for these out of pocket.

No-fault states

In the United States, 12 states have no-fault auto insurance laws, as well as Puerto Rico. With no-fault insurance, you rely on your own insurance provider to protect you and your passengers.

No-fault insurance coverage, called personal injury protection (PIP) insurance, pays for medical expenses no matter who is at fault. If you or your riders experience severe bodily injury, you can still sue the driver who is at fault for the accident.

PIP or no-fault insurance covers injuries, so you might be wondering who pays for car repairs in Connecticut. Most drivers in no-fault states carry liability insurance. Liability coverage provides compensation to the other driver for motor vehicle or property damage. You can also purchase optional coverage from an insurance company to cover your car.

In Connecticut

In no-fault states, you must carry PIP coverage. Connecticut operated under this no-fault insurance system until 1994. Since this is no longer a no-fault state, you retain the right to file a claim against the person at fault for the accident. Though you are no longer required to carry PIP insurance in Connecticut, you are responsible for meeting minimum insurance requirements by law.

Required Car Insurance Coverage in Hartford, CT

In Connecticut, PIP coverage is optional. Yet, certain types of auto insurance are mandatory. Let’s look at what Connecticut drivers are required to have and some extras that they can add to policies.

Liability insurance

The State of Connecticut requires drivers to carry liability coverage of at least $25,000 per person. The minimum amount of bodily injury liability is $50,000 per accident. The policy must also carry property damage liability of $25,000 per accident.

Your liability insurance policy covers you and others you let drive your car. Since medical treatment and car repairs can be expensive in the United States, some people pay more expensive insurance premiums to have higher coverage limits in case of severe injuries.

Uninsured and underinsured insurance

In 19 US jurisdictions, including Connecticut, uninsured motorist coverage (UM) is required. UM compensates the policyholder if the at-fault car driver does not have insurance or leaves the scene of the accident.

In addition, as a licensed Connecticut driver, you must have underinsured motorist coverage (UIM). UIM compensates the policyholder if the amount provided by the at-fault driver’s insurance company is not high enough to cover all of the accident costs.

For injuries caused by other drivers, UM and UIM policies usually cover you, immediate family members living in the same home, and your passengers. The minimum for UM and UIM policies is $25,000 per injured person and $50,000 per accident. As with liability insurance, you can pay extra to double the amount of your bodily injury liability coverage.

You can check to see if you comply with these requirements online. To do so, you will need your Connecticut driver’s license or state ID number.

Optional benefits offered by auto insurance companies

Besides the basic insurance coverage, you can also get additional coverage by paying for extra benefits. According to the Connecticut Insurance Department, some policy add-ons available in Connecticut are:

  • PIP: PIP is no-fault insurance. Since claims are paid regardless of who caused it, policies might cost more than other accident insurance.
  • Conversion coverage: This extra insurance activates when accident costs are higher than what the at-fault driver’s insurance pays. For example, suppose your UM coverage is $300,000, and the at-fault driver’s insurance policy limit is $200,000. If your personal injury damages total $200,000, you would receive $200,000 from your underinsured policy to cover the $400,000 total. Since payments from other sources don’t decrease the coverage amount, it can be beneficial in case of a high-cost collision. The same scenario without conversion would only pay $100,000 due to your $300,000 limit.
  • Basic reparations or Medical Payments (MedPay): You can claim this coverage for injuries caused to you or a family member living in your household. Policies vary, but sometimes lost wages and funeral costs are also included.
  • Collision coverage: This feature is for damage to your car due to flipping over, hitting other motor vehicles, or crashing into a stationary object. In most cases, you are responsible for a deductible portion of the costs of fixing or replacing your car.
  • Comprehensive coverage: Comprehensive coverage is for damage caused by factors other than auto accidents. Examples include theft, vandalism, wildlife, floods, and falling objects.

Ultimately, Connecticut’s insurance laws can be described as a hybrid system. You don’t have to buy PIP insurance, but its laws contain principles similar to those in a no-fault state.

What if you were injured in a car accident in Hartford, Connecticut? Make the most of the coverage you have. Our law firm can provide fast assistance to help with the claims process and determine whether you qualify for a personal injury settlement.

How to Determine Fault in Connecticut

In Connecticut, optional PIP insurance will cover your medical expenses if you are injured, regardless of who caused the accident. However, you could face some steep bills if you do not have PIP coverage or your limits are too low.

Thankfully, no-fault insurance is not your only option in Connecticut. The at-fault driver’s insurance company can provide compensation to cover the cost of treating your injuries.

You can also file a claim in civil court.

For your claim to succeed, you must establish who is at fault and how much liability the at-fault drivers should carry. Connecticut uses a legal standard called modified comparative negligence. This rule states that if you are partially at fault, you are still eligible for compensation. However, your compensation may be reduced by your percentage of fault.

Consider the following details of how the system works.

Pure comparative negligence

Under pure comparative negligence laws, you share 25 percent of the fault of an accident. You can submit a claim for 75 percent of the total damages. If the claim totals $100,000, you could receive $75,000.

Threshold limits

Connecticut sets maximum limits on how much you can claim for non-economic losses like pain and suffering. PIP can limit your ability to recover non-economic damages. After an accident, a fast-working attorney can review your policy to determine how your no-fault insurance works.

To pursue a fast legal claim for your injuries, a Gould Injury Law attorney may need to demonstrate that you fit at least one of the following criteria:

  • You were permanently injured or sustained disfigurement
  • You lost a body part or a bodily function
  • Your medical expenses exceeded a set limit (which fluctuates)

Insurance can protect you from the financial woes of a vehicle collision. Yet, it can be challenging to understand your insurance and get the answers you need as fast as you need them. That is why our fast-working law firm offers free consultations for fault-based and no-fault insurance policyholders if they are injured in a Connecticut motor vehicle collision.

What to Do After a Hartford Car Accident

The national average for insurance is about $1500 per year. Since you are paying your insurance company for protection, you might assume your policy will cover all your needs. Yet, people who carry no-fault car insurance and even those with full coverage are often disappointed by their policies.

You should enlist professional help if you want a fast conclusion. At Gould Injury Law, “The Fast Firm,” we understand that an insurance company is out to make money. Sometimes, you need the law and the assistance of a knowledgeable lawyer to ensure you get the coverage you deserve fast.

Let’s work together to get fast compensation for your car accident. Our experienced legal team can handle the insurance company while you focus on recovery. Contact us at any time, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, or call (888) WIN-FAST to schedule a free consultation with our legal team.