The New Jersey Property-Liability Insurance Guaranty Association (PLIGA) “provides a safety net designed to mitigate the effects of loss on claimants and policyholders who, through no fault of their own, find themselves without coverage” (PLIGA website). If you are injured in a motor vehicle accident but have no insurance, you may be able to have necessary medical treatment paid through the Unsatisfied Claim and Judgment Fund (UCJF). For example, victims injured in a hit and run accident or an accident involving an uninsured motorist may apply to the UCJF for coverage for medical expenses.
First, you must file a Notice of Intention to Make Claim with the UCJF within 180 days of the accident. If you are seeking payment of medical expenses, you must also complete and submit a Personal Injury Protection Application. An Affidavit of No Insurance is another required document which must be furnished to the UCJF.
Individuals injured in a motor vehicle accident involving an uninsured vehicle also may be entitled to uninsured motorist (UM) benefits if no other coverage is available.
The law establishing the UCJF has a lot of exceptions from coverage. It does not cover accidents occurring outside of New Jersey. It does not cover you if you are the spouse, parent or child of the party causing the accident. If you are the owner or registrant of an uninsured vehicle, or if you are covered by workers compensation insurance, your claim will be denied. These are just a few of the exceptions from coverage.
Medical expenses from a serious accident can be financially crippling, and could lead to bankruptcy. If you are injured in a car accident, it is important for you to consult knowledgeable counsel to advise you as to all aspects of the law pertaining to your individual situation.
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