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What is the Louisiana “No Pay, No Play” Law?

Louisiana’s “No Pay, No Play” Statute (La. R.S. § 32:866)

“[t]here shall be no recovery for the first fifteen thousand dollars of bodily injury and no recovery for the first twenty-five thousand dollars of property damage based on any cause or right of action arising out of a motor vehicle accident, for such injury or damages occasioned by an owner or operator of a motor vehicle involved in such accident who fails to own or maintain compulsory motor vehicle liability security.”

What exactly does this mean?

In Louisiana, the “No Pay, No Play” law is a legal provision that restricts the ability of uninsured motorists to recover certain damages in the event of a car accident. It essentially means that if you do not have the legally required auto insurance coverage in Louisiana and you are involved in a car accident, you may face limitations in your ability to seek compensation for certain damages, even if the accident was not your fault. 

It’s important to note that these rules are in place to encourage all drivers to maintain the required auto insurance coverage, which includes liability insurance, in order to protect themselves and others in the event of an accident. The penalties associated with the “No Pay, No Play” law serve as a financial incentive for drivers to carry insurance as required by law.

Let us break it down into the two categories mentioned in the statute: Property Damage and Bodily Injury. 

Property Damage

Property damage coverage is the component of auto insurance that helps cover the cost of damage to other people’s property when you are at fault. It falls under the liability insurance portion of your auto policy. By design, property damage coverage is meant to provide financial protection in case you damage someone else’s property such as a building, fence, vehicle, or other structure in a car accident. 

Under the Louisiana No Pay No Play Law, if you are an uninsured motorist and you are involved in an accident where your vehicle sustains damage, you may not be able to recover the first $25,000 of property damage from the at-fault party. This means you would have to pay for these damages out of your pocket.

Bodily Injury

Bodily Injury coverage is the component of auto insurance that provides protection for the policyholder and their assets in the event of a car accident in which they are found to be at fault and another person (or people) are injured. It will cover expenses such as medical, pain and suffering, and other related costs for individuals who sustain injuries in an accident for which you are deemed responsible.

Under the Louisiana No Pay No Play Law, if you are an uninsured motorist and you are injured in an accident caused by another party, you may not be able to recover the first $15,000 of bodily injury damages from the at-fault party.

Are there exceptions to this law?

Yes! There are exceptions to this law. If you are an uninsured motorist who is not at fault and you are in an accident with an uninsured or underinsured motorist, you may still be able to recover damages. Some exceptions include: 

  • Out-of-State Driver
  • The Negligent Driver Committed Certain Crimes
  • You Are a Passenger in a Vehicle that Is Not Your Own (It only applies to the owner or operator. But this means if you are the passenger in your own vehicle and the vehicle does not have insurance, then you will be barred from recovery.)
  • Your Vehicle Is in a Parking Spot at the Time of the Crash
  • Catastrophic injuries
  • Hit and Run Accidents
  • Public Transportation Accidents

These are some of the exceptions to the No Pay No Play Statute in Louisiana at the time of this writing. For a full understanding of this law and breakdown of each exception to the law, contact Liriano Law for more information. Carmen can walk you through understanding these exceptions and limitations. It is important to consult with your local attorney for guidance specific to your situation if you are involved in an auto accident in Louisiana. Call Carmen today for your free consultation!