Pennsylvania’s no-fault car insurance laws are meant to ensure that injured parties receive compensation, regardless of who caused the accident or who was at fault. Unfortunately, these laws can be hard to navigate unless you’ve taken ample time to understand them.
Pennsylvania drivers have two options, limited tort or full tort, and there are certain requirements that must be met before Pennsylvania no-fault insurance will pay out a dime.
If you find yourself confused about no-fault insurance laws in Pennsylvania, you’re not alone. Please reach out to Baratta Law, LLC for assistance when getting the car accident settlement you’re due.
The Pennsylvania Choice No-Fault System
The no-fault insurance system is categorized as either limited tort or full tort. Pennsylvania has chosen to be neither limited nor full tort, instead opting for a choice no-fault system where each driver can choose whether they want to purchase full or limited coverage from their own insurer or from another company altogether.
The choice between the two is made when you apply for new coverage and can be changed at any time.
If you choose limited tort, this means that you have chosen no-fault car insurance. Your insurance company pays for medical bills and lost wages up to the minimum amount required by the Pennsylvania Motor Vehicle Financial Responsibility Law, which is currently $5,000. The problem is that car accidents usually incur costs far above this amount.
Drivers sometimes opt for the limited tort to save money on insurance premiums, but all too often, they later realize that there are so many limitations to their coverage, they aren’t compensated fully for their losses. For instance, if you’re at fault for the accident, you may have to pay out of pocket for other damages like vehicle damage.
In addition, non-monetary damages such as pain and suffering are not covered. However, exceptions exist that may allow you to file a lawsuit to collect non-monetary damages under certain conditions or thresholds.
Pennsylvania’s Serious Injury Threshold
These thresholds are based upon whether or not you have what is categorized as a serious injury, for example, if you have been disabled or disfigured due to a car accident. If you meet the serious injury threshold, then you may sue for monetary damages. You’ll find more information about serious injury thresholds in your policy details.
On the other hand, if you choose full tort, then you have not picked no-fault insurance and therefore are not bound by its many limitations. If you’re in a car accident, you can file a claim against the at-fault driver and once it’s approved, your medical expenses and lost income will be covered by their insurance.
Learn About State Insurance Laws with a Lawyer
It’s important to understand exactly how your car insurance works so that accidents don’t become more expensive than they have to be. Your car accident lawyer can help you navigate your insurance policy and get the coverage you need following a car accident.
Ready for a free consultation? Fill out our online form or call Baratta Law, LLC at 215-914-8132 to find out more about how Pennsylvania’s no-fault car insurance laws apply to your case.