14 Sep What is No Pay, No Play in the State of Missouri
What is No Pay, No Play in the State of Missouri?
No pay, no play was a law that was enacted to make it such that if you do not have automobile insurance coverage at the time of an automobile accident and you get injured, you are not entitled to non-economic damages which are traditionally the pain and suffering and loss of time portion of a case. Essentially, they are punishing somebody for not complying with the financial responsibility ordinance which requires drivers to have automobile coverage.
Exceptions to No Pay, No Play
There are some exceptions to no pay, no play, so if you had automobile coverage within six months of the time of the accident and it was canceled for non-payment, that would be one exception. Another exception is if you are a passenger, so if you were not the driver. And a third exception would be if the defendant, the at-fault driver was either drunk, intoxicated, or under the influence of drugs.
Challenges to No Pay, No Play
When the no pay, no play statute was put in place, attorneys began challenging the law. It is considered unconstitutional depending on which judge hears it. Currently, we have several orders from trial judges throughout the state of Missouri that have said that this particular law is not constitutional and, therefore, will not be enforced. The argument that is typically made is that it violates the equal protection clause of both the state and federal constitution and it infringes upon a person’s right to a trial by jury by not letting them assess the harms and losses, the damages essentially. In order to get full and fair compensation however, a lawsuit would need to be filed. Currently, what insurance adjusters do is they cite the statute and then use that as a way to offer an amount of money in settlement that is less than or equal to the medical bills, and essentially by citing that statute they are technically correct, and the only way to get around it would be to file a lawsuit and then have the statute invalidated as it relates to your case.
Recourse to Fight No Pay, No Play
In the state of Missouri, while no pay, no play is the current state of the law, a plaintiff can fight it if a lawsuit is filed and stricken if it does not apply in your specific case. A seasoned attorney can walk you through the process to do that, especially if your case is already in litigation. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us directly on our website at www.ranalawgroup.com or via phone call at 314-329-7690. Thank you.
Tarun B. Rana