Know the Consequences of Electing the Verbal Threshold Option on Your Car Insurance

January 3, 2014


In an effort to provide less expensive automobile insurance the New Jersey Legislature created the Verbal Threshold or limitation on lawsuit option for car insurance policies.  In exchange for these lesser premiums a New Jersey driver who has selected the verbal threshold option and has been involved in a car accident may only advance suit if they suffer bodily injury which results in:

  1. death;
  2.  dismemberment; significant disfigurement
  3. significant scarring;
  4. displaced fractures;
  5. loss of a fetus; or
  6. a permanent injury within a reasonable degree of medical probability.

This limitation imposed on an individual who has suffered a “permanent injury” is one in which “the body part or organ, or both, has not healed to function normally and will not heal to function normally with further medical treatment.”  Accordingly, a driver’s rights to advance a lawsuit are severely limited when the driver in New Jersey selects the verbal threshold option for the automobile accident.

In short, while drivers who do not elect the limitation on lawsuit option will certainly pay higher premiums for their car insurance, they will not have to overcome New Jersey’s Verbal Threshold if they are injured in an automobile accident and decide to file suit, like those who elect the limitation on lawsuit option in exchange for lesser monthly insurance premiums.

Review your car insurance policy today and confirm whether or not you are subject to NJ’s Verbal Threshold.

Injured in a car accident or as a result of another type of accident? Contact Cliff Bidlingmaier or any of the Personal Injury Attorneys at Kardos, Rickles, Hand & Bidlingmaier at 609-337-1106 or 215-970-2755 to learn your rights and options. 

Article Written by Clifford D. Bidlingmaier, Esq.