You are likely not thinking about the bills you have to pay after someone you love is killed in a New Jersey car accident. Unfortunately, there is little time to grieve before hospitals and funeral homes will begin to collect their fees, leaving survivors unsure about how they are going to pay for end-of-life costs.
Families can take small comfort in the fact that the state provides New Jersey survivors’ benefits as part of its no-fault car insurance. Policyholders are required to carry at least $15,000 of medical coverage to pay for medical injuries that result from an auto accident, and in cases where someone is killed, families may be collect many additional benefits.
New Jersey no-fault insurance may pay for one or all of the following after a fatal accident:
- Funeral expenses. Insurance will provide a maximum benefit of $1,000 for funeral, burial and cremation expenses for each fatal accident victim.
- Death benefits. If the person killed was an employed member of the family who provided regular income, no-fault insurance may provide death benefits in a lump sum up to $5,200. These are usually collected by the victim’s surviving spouse, the victim’s children, or the beneficiary of the victim’s estate.
- Income continuation benefits. If someone else in the family was injured in the crash, you may file for additional payments based on the injured member’s loss of income. This is to provide compensation for the victim’s inability to work based on a bodily injury disability. In most cases, victims can collect a maximum weekly payment of $100, but the payments may continue up to $5,200 for as long as the injured person is living.
- Essential services benefits. This clause provides the surviving family with funds to pay for household services, repairs and maintenance that the deceased will no longer be able to provide. This may also be collected if a family member was injured to the point that they will not be able to perform certain services as a result of a disability (such as a victim resigned to a wheelchair who will be unable to mow the lawn). The family may be reimbursed for these expenses up to $12 per day with a lifetime limit of $4,380.
Depending on the circumstances of the accident, you and your family may be entitled to much more than New Jersey survivors’ benefits. To find out if you could benefit from a wrongful death case, call Morristown car accident attorney Manfred F. Ricciardelli, Jr., today at (877) 360-0183 to receive a FREE consultation.