New York Automobile Insurance Plan – NYAIP

New York Automobile Insurance Plan – NYAIP

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If you’re a motorist with a car registered in New York, you're required to have a car insurance policy that meets the state-mandated minimum coverages. If you don't, you risk having your vehicle registration and driver’s license suspended.

However, getting car insurance isn't easy for everyone. High-risk drivers who struggle to find coverage in the voluntary market must seek an alternative like the New York Automobile Insurance Plan (NYAIP). Unfortunately, a policy obtained through the NYAIP will almost always cost more than the same policy would directly from an insurance company. As soon as you've built a better driving record, you can return to the regular market for better auto insurance rates in NY.

What is the New York Automobile Insurance Plan?

The New York Automobile Insurance Plan (NYAIP) facilitates insurance for more than 90,000 high-risk drivers every year. It does this by assigning drivers who have been unable to find an insurer in the voluntary market to an auto insurance carrier. The NYAIP is a last resort.

When motorists enroll in the NYAIP, they are placed in a pool and then randomly distributed to insurance companies based on a quota system. Every insurer authorized to write auto insurance in New York must participate in the NYAIP and provide coverage to a certain number of drivers based on their market share.

For example, if Geico has 15% of the New York auto insurance market, that means 15% of the high-risk drivers in the pool will be assigned to Geico.

NYAIP coverage and premiums

Your assigned insurer is required to provide you with the minimum coverages required by New York law. Additionally, you must be offered the option of purchasing higher amounts of coverage.

The New York Financial Responsibility Law mandates that all motorists be insured for a per-accident minimum of:

  • $10,000 for property damage
  • $25,000/$50,000 for bodily injury liability for one person/two or more people
  • $50,000/$100,000 for the death of one person/two or more people

For drivers who would like even more protection, the NYAIP offers optional higher limits of up to $250,000/$500,000 for bodily injury liability and $100,000 for property damage liability.

New York requires uninsured-motorists insurance as well as basic personal injury protection (PIP), which is also referred to as no-fault insurance. The NYAIP, like all NY licensed auto insurers, offers drivers basic PIP with a $50,000 limit per accident. If you’d like to purchase more PIP, you can purchase up to $50,000 in addition. You can also buy optional basic economic loss (OBEL) coverage of $25,000, which covers additional injuries and lost wages.

Comprehensive and collision coverage are not required by New York, but you do have the option of purchasing them through the NYAIP. You can get up to $50,000 in physical coverages and choose from several deductible options. Medical payment coverage is also available.

NYAIP auto insurance rates and premiums

Premiums will vary for each driver, depending on where you live, your age, your driving record, the type of car you drive, your levels of coverage and other factors. However, if you need to buy your policy through the NYAIP, you're likely to find that your premiums are significantly higher than the average annual New York auto insurance premium of $1,790 for full coverage.

This is why it's important to focus on improving your driving record while enrolled in a plan through the NYAIP. As a better driver, you may become eligible for cheaper insurance rates.

Eligibility

To be eligible for insurance through the NYAIP, you must certify that you have tried and failed to find auto insurance in the voluntary market in New York or have been unable to find auto insurance with rates lower than those offered under the NYAIP within the last 60 days.

Your assigned insurer must continue to insure you for at least three years. If you can find an insurer in the voluntary market that will offer you coverage before those three years are up, you can cancel your NYAIP policy at any time at no charge.

If you still can't find coverage in the voluntary market after three years, you can reenter the NYAIP pool and be reassigned to another insurer. Another possibility at the end of the three years is that your insurer may rewrite your policy in the voluntary market.

For example, if State Farm is your assigned insurer through the NYAIP for three years and you have been evaluated to be a safer driver, State Farm could offer to insure you outside of the NYAIP program.

Because high-risk drivers are more likely to incur losses and expenses, rates for those in the NYAIP pool tend to be significantly higher than the same policies in the voluntary market. If you find the NYAIP to be too expensive and have exhausted your options in the voluntary market, it will be best for you to enroll in the NYAIP for a short time while you make efforts to become a safer driver and improve your driving record.

How to get insurance through the NYAIP

To get a quote for the NYAIP, call their number at (212) 943-5100 to be put in touch with a local agent.

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