Most states allow car accident victims to pursue compensation for their losses through a personal injury claim or lawsuit against whoever is responsible for the crash. But obtaining compensation works differently in Hawaii. Another driver’s negligence only plays a role if your injuries meet the state’s “serious injury threshold.”
But how do you know if your injuries meet the state requirement? Reach out to a knowledgeable car accident lawyer from Recovery Law Center. Our legal team will listen to your story and identify every potential source of compensation for you. Call or contact us today for a free consultation.
Proving Fault for Car Accident in Hawaii
Hawaii’s no-fault auto insurance laws make filing a lawsuit after a car crash more challenging. As a no-fault state, Hawaii prohibits accident victims from suing another driver in most cases. Instead, the victim files a Personal Injury Protection (PIP) claim with their own insurance company to cover medical bills, lost wages, and other losses.
However, PIP benefits are not always enough to cover the full extent of your losses after a collision. You could be on the hook for any remaining expenses if your losses exceed your PIP policy limits. However, Hawaii does allow seriously injured individuals to file a personal injury lawsuit against a negligent driver.
To file a personal injury lawsuit against a negligent driver in Hawaii, you first have to show that your injuries meet one of the following thresholds:
- The costs of your injuries exceeded $5,000 or the limits of your PIP benefits.
- Your injuries include the permanent, significant loss of a body part or bodily function.
- You suffered severe and permanent disfigurement as a result of the accident.
- Someone died in the crash.
If your injuries meet these thresholds, you can file an insurance claim or personal injury lawsuit against the other driver. You will still have to prove the other driver acted negligently and that those actions directly contributed to your injuries. Our car accident lawyers can collect the evidence needed to establish the other driver’s liability and fight for maximum compensation for you.
Drivers’ Legal Duties in Hawaii
Hawaii law requires drivers to report traffic accidents to the police if either of the following conditions are met:
- The crash left a driver, passenger, or another party (e.g., cyclist, pedestrian, etc.) injured or killed.
- The accident caused more than $3,000 in property damage.
Types of Coverage and Policy Limits Required Under Hawaii Law
All drivers in Hawaii are required to carry insurance that meets the following standards:
- $10,000 in Personal Injury Protection coverage
- $20,000 per person or $40,000 per accident in bodily injury coverage
- $10,000 per accident in property damage coverage
Hawaii also requires all insurers to offer uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage. However, you are allowed to decline this coverage if you do so in writing.
Negligence in Hawaii
Hawaii uses a comparative negligence model in cases where multiple parties share fault for an accident. With comparative negligence, you may still be able to collect compensation even if you are partly responsible for a wreck. However, your total amount of compensation will be reduced by the percentage of fault you are assigned for the crash. But there’s a catch. You can only collect money if you bear 50 percent or less responsibility for a car accident. A single percentage point higher, and you lose your right to compensation.
Talk to a Car Accident Lawyer in Hawaii
If you or a loved one suffered serious injuries due to another driver’s negligence in Hawaii, you could have a valid legal claim. A car accident attorney from Recovery Law Center can help determine your legal options in a free consultation. There’s nothing to lose and everything to gain. Contact us to get started today.