If you are involved in a car accident and another driver is liable for your injuries, then you may be able to file a tort claim against that party. If your injuries are serious, make sure you fully account for the short- and long-term impact.
The following is a list of damages you may collect from the negligent driver’s liability insurance. (And if the other driver did not have insurance, you may use your uninsured motorist coverage.)
- Medical bills: This includes emergency room/trauma care and all subsequent medical treatment; including expenses incurred traveling (and parking) for visits to the doctor.
- Disability-related Expenses: If you suffer serious injuries, you may require assistive medical devices, home or vehicle modifications, and much more.
- Lost Income: This includes current and future income while unable to work, as well as benefits which you are losing because you’re unable to work. Serious injuries can mean a long time away from work, so work with your attorney to get a full assessment of the time you may be out of work and your future capacity to earn income.
- Damaged or Destroyed Property: You may also recover compensation to repair or replace your vehicle and any personal items damaged or destroyed in the wreck.
- Wrongful Death: These damages are awarded to surviving family members; including all of the above, plus funeral and other expenses. It can also include survivors’ emotional pain and suffering.
- Pain and Suffering: If you have full tort insurance, you can file a tort claim for pain and suffering damages. If you have limited tort insurance, you can file a tort claim for pain and suffering only if you suffered serious injuries.
Other Factors that Affect Damage Awards after an Auto Accident
Shared liability: Pennsylvania is a modified comparative negligence state, meaning that one’s own liability for the accident affects recoverable damages. So if – for example – you are driving on a well-lit street at dusk, but have yet to turn on your headlights, and another vehicle strikes you, it is possible that you are partially at fault (say, 20 percent). If the total of your damages is $500,000, the defendant is liable for $400,000.
No fault auto insurance: Keep in mind that Pennsylvania is a no-fault state. Drivers have to carry $5,000 in medical benefits coverage, which can cover your medical costs after the wreck.
Get Started Right Away to Collect Damages
The statute of limitations to file an auto injury claim or civil lawsuit is two years from the date of the accident: [42 Pa. Con. Stat. § 5524]. Since auto accidents that cause serious injuries can be expensive, victims should retain a car accident lawyer to protect them from the many damage disputes that could arise from defendant – or your – insurance companies. If you require assistance, contact Cordisco & Saile LLC at 215-642-2335.