Insuring Your Car in Queens: How Are Your Rates Calculated?

Factors Influencing Car Insurance Premiums

The cost of your car insurance premiums is based on a number of factors:

  • Age: Drivers under 25 have the most accidents. The safest drivers are generally between the ages of 50 and 65.
  • Gender: Women tend to be safer drivers than men.
  • Marital Status: A married person is considered to be more stable and pays lower premiums than a single person with an identical driving record.
  • Driving Record: Having a history of accidents and/or moving violations places you at greater risk of future accidents and results in higher insurance premiums. However, as your driving record improves, your insurance premiums become lower.
  • Credit Rating: If you have a poor credit history or no credit history, insurance companies may see you as a higher risk and may charge you higher rates.
  • Occupation and Vehicle Use: If you have a job that requires you to use your vehicle frequently or drive significant distances regularly you may be at greater risk of accidents and therefore subject to higher insurance premiums. Anti-theft devices may help to lower your insurance costs.
  • Where You Live: Where you live, drive and park your car may be the biggest determining factor in how much insurance you will pay. People who live in areas with little or no traffic pay less than those who live in congested areas with lots of traffic, car thefts and accidents. Even the cost of medical care in your area may affect the amount of your insurance premiums.

Comparing Queens to Other New York City Boroughs

In the five boroughs, car insurance rates are based on factors such as population density, the number of automobiles, rates of car theft and traffic congestion. Brooklyn has the highest car insurance rates, with an average annual premium of $3,550.47 followed by the Bronx at $3,022.40. Queens ranks third, at $2,549.69. Queens is the second most populous borough after Brooklyn and has a lower population density. Its rate of automobile theft is less than half that of Brooklyn. However, other factors serve to keep Queens car insurance rates relatively high. The borough houses two of the world’s busiest airports, JFK and LaGuardia, which increases vehicle use and traffic congestion in the borough. In addition, Citifield, where the New York Mets play, is also located in Queens. Within the borough of Queens, your neighborhood or zip code may also affect your insurance rates based on population, traffic congestion and the number of automobile thefts. For example, the average annual insurance rate in zip code 11106 is $2868 while the average annual premium in zip code 11412 is $3233.

Contact the Orlow Firm

If you have any questions, please contact the New York car accident attorneys at The Orlow Firm for a free consultation by calling (646) 647-3398.

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Car Insurance: The Very Basics

The Minimum Insurance Coverage Required by New York State Law

As personal injury attorneys, we at The Orlow Firm urge all Queens residents to become educated consumers when it comes to car insurance coverage. In this article, we provide information as to the absolute minimum insurance coverage required by state law. In our next article, Car Insurance: How Much is Enough?, we strongly advise you to consider obtaining coverage above the minimum requirements levels.

In-State Insurance Coverage

You must have New York State-issued automobile liability insurance in order to register a vehicle in New York State. Failure to maintain this coverage can result in suspension of your vehicle registration and driver’s license. Even if you don’t use your vehicle, your insurance coverage must remain in effect while your registration is still valid. Your auto insurance policy must be issued in the name of the vehicle registrant, and remain in the name of the registrant at all times. In addition, your car insurance coverage must be issued by a company that is licensed by the NYS Department of Financial Services and certified by the NYS Department of Motor Vehicles. Auto insurance coverage from out-of-state is not acceptable.

Basic Coverage

In the event of an automobile accident, basic coverage provides reimbursement for medical procedures, lost earnings and other reasonable expenses, property damage, and death benefit payable to the estate of the person affected.

At the very least you must have the following coverage:

  • $10,000 for property damage for a single accident
  • $25,000 for bodily injury and $50,000 for death for a person involved in an accident
  • $50,000 for bodily injury and $100,000 for death for two or more people in an accident
  • $50,000 mandatory no-fault insurance

No-Fault Coverage

The purpose of no-fault coverage is to provide prompt payment of benefits regardless of who was at fault and whether or not the accident involved negligence. Lawsuits may be brought only for economic losses that exceed the no-fault coverage limits, for non-economic damages such as pain and suffering, or for “serious injury” as defined by New York State Insurance Law. No-fault coverage provides personal injury protection and does not pay for damage to your property or vehicle.

Reducing the Cost of Car Insurance

Here are some the ways you can reduce the cost of your car insurance: accident prevention courses, automatic seat belts or air bags, factory-installed anti-lock braking systems (ABS), anti-theft devices (alarm systems, ignition cut-off devices and certain electronic tracking systems), factory-installed daytime running lamps, driver training for persons under age 21, “careful driver” or “accident-free” discounts, and multi-car discounts.

Contact the Orlow Firm

If you have any questions, contact the Queens car accident attorneys at The Orlow Firm for a free consultation at (646) 647-3398.

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Car Insurance: How Much is Enough?

Upgrading Auto Insurance Coverage for Adequate Protection

Car insurance is something we hope we never have to use. However, you don’t want to wait until you have an accident to find out that your insurance coverage is inadequate. At the Orlow firm, our personal injury attorneys all too often see Queens residents fall victim to insufficient auto insurance coverage. We strongly suggest that you consider adding to your coverage in the following ways:

Supplemental Spousal Liability Insurance

Your basic liability policy does not provide coverage if one spouse causes injury or death to the other due to negligent driving. For example, assume you are in the passenger seat while your spouse is driving. He or she becomes distracted by texting while driving, rear-ends another vehicle and causes injury to you. Under basic Bodily Injury coverage, you, as the injured spouse, cannot receive payments. Fortunately, New York State auto insurers must notify you of the availability of Supplemental Spousal Insurance Liability Coverage. In order to receive this coverage, you must request it in writing from your insurer. It is not expensive and may prove to be a worthwhile investment.

Increased Bodily Injury Liability

If you are involved in an accident that causes injury to another, it may be important to protect your assets in the event of a lawsuit. You should seriously consider purchasing higher limits of bodily injury liability, such as those within the range of $50,000/$100,000, $100,000/$300,000, $250,000/$500/000, or even higher, depending on the amount of assets you wish to protect.

Increased Property Damage Liability

The minimum requirement for third-party property damage liability coverage is $10,000. However, many of today’s cars are worth far more and the cost of replacement or repair can easily exceed minimum coverage levels. Consider raising your property damage limits to $15,000, $25,000, $50,000 or higher.

Increased Personal Injury Protection (no-fault) Benefits

For a modest cost, the minimum $50,000 no-fault benefits coverage can be extended to $100,000 or higher. Additional coverage extends to all out-of-state guest occupants in your vehicle while you are driving anywhere in the U.S. and its territories or Canada. In addition, you can increase maximum benefits for potential lost earnings and other necessary expenses.

Increased Supplemental Uninsured Motorist (SUM) Coverage

Extending this coverage provides you with added protection against negligent actions by uninsured or hit-and-run motorists. Coverage is available for up to $250,000 per person per accident and $500,000 per accident. Extended coverage is also available for collision, comprehensive (damage to your vehicle from causes other than collision as well as theft), medical payments and accidental death and dismemberment.

Contact the Orlow Firm

We urge you to discuss expanded coverage with your insurer to see which level of benefits is most appropriate for you.

If you have further questions, contact the Queens personal injury attorneys at The Orlow Firm by calling (646) 647-3398 for a free consultation.

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Common Causes of Auto Accidents

Discovering the Causes of Car Accidents

If you have been injured in a car accident, it is important to have an attorney by your side who knows how to identify the causes of auto accidents, and determine who is liable. At The Orlow Firm, our lawyers have close to 70 years combined experience handling car accident cases for clients throughout the New York City metropolitan area. We are dedicated to helping our clients obtain the financial resources they need to pay for their medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering and other hardships.

Contact our New York City law firm today to speak with an experienced New York car accident attorney.

New York Car Accident Lawyers

In handling a car accident case, it is important to identify the cause and the responsible party or parties. Doing so ensures that the injured party or parties can obtain compensation from all available sources.

Common causes of car accidents include:

  • Speeding
  • Reckless driving
  • Distracted driving
  • Drunk driving
  • Faulty road construction or maintenance
  • Truck driver negligence
  • Trucking company negligence

If you have been injured in a car accident, our attorneys are here to put our investigative resources to work to build a successful case for you. We provide our clients with tireless advocacy and a commitment to exceptional client service. We will do everything in our power to help you obtain the compensation you need and deserve.

Contact the Orlow Firm

Have you or a loved one been seriously injured by a careless or negligent driver? If so, contact our New York car accident lawyers today for information regarding your legal rights.

To speak with an attorney at the Orlow Firm, call (646) 647-3398 or contact us online.

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Car Accident Liability: Who is at Fault?

Identifying Liable Parties in Car Accidents

Some car accidents are the fault of no one. Many, however, are the result of negligence on the part of drivers, or can be blamed on faulty road maintenance or other factors. If you have been injured in a car accident it is important to have an attorney who knows how to identify liability, to help you seek compensation for your losses.

At The Orlow Firm, our lawyers have extensive experience handling car accident liability issues, and a proven record of success obtaining favorable results for our clients. We are dedicated to helping you obtain the compensation you deserve, and holding liable parties to account.

Contact our New York City law firm today to speak with an experienced New York car accident attorney.

Who Is at Fault?

Our attorneys work closely with our clients to get the facts in car accident cases. We begin by getting your account of the accident, then seek further evidence from every available source, including:

  • Police reports
  • Eye-witness testimony
  • Accident scene investigation
  • Accident reconstruction

In handling a car accident case, it is important to identify all liable parties. In some cases, more than one party may be at fault, which makes the case more complex and also provides additional avenues of compensation for the injured.

Our attorneys have the investigative resources to identify causation and liability in car accident cases and are prepared to help you obtain compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other losses.

Contact the Orlow Firm

Have you or a loved one suffered a serious injury in a car accident? If so, contact our New York car accident lawyers today for information regarding your legal rights.

To speak with an attorney, call (646) 647-3398.

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