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Is West Virginia a No-Fault State?

April 26, 2024

Knowing whether your state operates under fault or no-fault insurance practices is crucial in determining who to file a claim with. States can determine this individually, so checking the individual laws is essential. If you are unsure of the policies in your state or think that the insurance company you are filing your claim with is unfairly denying it, you can benefit from an experienced Charleston car accident attorney with Salango Law.

Understanding Fault in Insurance Claims

After an accident, there may be much uncertainty regarding how to file your insurance claim. Terms frequently used are ‘at-fault’ and ‘no-fault,’ which refer to how insurance companies pay their claims. Understanding your state’s laws may help you act more quickly and recoup some of your losses.

No-fault insurance refers to states where the insurance company does not have to determine who is at fault to pay your claim. Essentially, each company covers its own party’s losses, meaning you do not have to wait for proof of someone else’s responsibility. However, in a no-fault state, you may still file a personal injury lawsuit in civil court if you have sustained significant injury.

States with at-fault insurance policies require the responsible or at-fault party to be financially responsible for losses. When an accident happens, each driver must notify their insurance company. At this point, the insurance company will begin to determine who is at fault and whether it will pay out any benefits.

West Virginia Insurance Laws

Virginia is not a no-fault state. This means you must have proof of who is responsible for the accident, and your claim must be filed with that insurance company. This step can sometimes cause delays in covering more time-sensitive needs and costs, such as those for rental cars.

Once both parties have reported the accident, the insurance company will begin investigating to determine fault. Frequently, a copy of the police report and knowing who received citations is enough information to authorize renting a vehicle while the investigation is completed. If there is a significant delay, you may be able to speak with your insurance provider to inquire about payment, which they will then recoup from the other party’s insurance.

West Virginia Insurance Minimum Requirements

Like all other states, West Virginia has compulsory insurance laws requiring all drivers to hold at least a minimum standard of insurance coverage. Many drivers choose to hold higher coverage amounts, but according to the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV), the minimum requirements are as follows:

  • $25,000 in property damage
  • $25,000 for one injury in one crash
  • $50,000 for multiple injuries in one crash

Handling a West Virginia Car Accident

Car accident cases can become highly complicated, especially if you receive pushback from the insurance companies. Every case is different, but rarely will you be able to recover the same compensation on your own that you could get with an attorney. Immediately following a car accident, it can serve you well to document the scene, report the accident to your insurance, and collect the police report as soon as possible. Having this police report and quickly contacting an attorney to handle the insurance company is an excellent start to handling your at-fault insurance claim from your car accident.