A car accident in Philadelphia—even a minor one—can throw things into turmoil. The consequences can be much more difficult if you suffered injuries. If someone else’s negligence caused the accident, understanding some basics can be helpful.
Pennsylvania – A Choice No-Fault Car Insurance State
Pennsylvania implements a unique car accident insurance system that’s known as a choice no-fault law, which can be complicated. As a citizen of Pennsylvania, you have the choice of purchasing less-costly no-fault car insurance coverage, or purchasing more traditional coverage that is based on who was at fault in causing an accident. With no-fault coverage, your accident claim will be covered by your own insurance company, but only your financial damages are recoverable. In other words, while you’re covered for your medical expenses, lost wages, and property damages, you won’t be compensated for pain and suffering except in cases involving especially serious injuries.
If you carry more traditional insurance coverage, the negligent driver’s insurance will cover your losses, which may include damages for pain and suffering. There is, however, a mechanism for allocating the percentage of fault and adjusting your compensation accordingly. Because the determination of fault and allocation of responsibility can get very complicated, a dedicated car accident attorney can help.
Even a minor car accident can be costly, and no injury should be ignored. If you’ve suffered a minor injury in a car accident that was caused by another driver’s negligence, a car accident attorney can help you assess your best options and help ensure that you’re justly compensated. Because Pennsylvania’s car accident laws are unique to Pennsylvania, it’s important to consult with an experienced Pennsylvania car accident attorney. At the Levin Firm in Philadelphia, our dedicated legal team has the experience, commitment, and skill to aggressively advocate for your claim’s best possible resolution.
Your Injury: First Things First
Always seek medical attention after a car accident, even if you think you feel fine at the time.
Sometimes the trauma of being in car accident causes a rush of adrenaline and symptoms of shock that can mask injuries. Moreover, minor injuries that may not seem important can become serious if not treated. Certain kinds of injuries commonly associated with minor accidents—such as whiplash and spinal injuries—may develop into chronic debilitating conditions. Even if you think you escaped with just a few bumps and bruises, you should get checked out and make sure those bumps and bruises aren’t hiding something serious, like a blood clot. Early medical intervention is always in your best interest—even if the doctor just provides reassurance. Seeking swift medical attention also provides you with more accurate documentation of your physical damages to support your claim.
The Insurance Company
No matter what kind of coverage you carry, your car accident claim is going to go through a car insurance company. It is important to remember that car insurance companies are not in business to maximize recovery for your claim. Instead, car insurance companies attempt to minimize payouts as much as possible. Some implement delay tactics, or will offer a quick but inadequate settlement.
Your claim and your just compensation matter too much not to consult with an experienced car accident attorney who will help ensure that you’re fully compensated for all your incurred damages. Your best strategy is to find a lawyer experienced in dealing with car insurance companies who knows how to maximize your recovery. When you are injured after a car accident, it is no time to go to battle with an insurance company. Allow a dedicated car accident lawyer to protect your rights while you focus on your recovery.
Statute of Limitations
Pennsylvania has a two-year statute of limitations for bringing a legal claim after an accident, which means you have two years from the date the accident to file a lawsuit. You cannot bring suit after limitations has run, even if your injuries become more serious over time. An experienced car accident lawyer helps guide your claim through the process and ensures you don’t miss important deadlines.
A Whiplash Injury
Often people who suffer from whiplash don’t even realize they’ve been injured until a day or longer after the accident. Because whiplash injuries have the potential to degrade into something far more serious, they’re worth considering more carefully. Whiplash is a soft-tissue injury of the neck caused when your head is whipped back and forth on your neck – like the cracking of a whip. Even minor accidents at slower speeds can result in whiplash injuries. While such injuries are sometimes immediately apparent, they can also develop and worsen over time. Whiplash injuries often lead to considerable pain and to decreased range-of-motion in the neck. Moreover, whiplash can be short-lived, but can also become a permanent debilitating condition. Even what seems like mild whiplash should not be overlooked as a potentially serious injury.
Your Car Accident Claim
Even a car accident that leads to a minor injury can rack up considerable expenses:
- Medical attention and treatment
- Prescription medications
- Property damage to your vehicle
- Time lost from work and lost wages
A skilled car accident attorney will help ensure that you recover fair compensation for your injuries. If you’ve been injured by another driver’s negligence, it’s a difficult time. But don’t let an insurance company take advantage of you when you have been injured. A committed car accident attorney will carefully evaluate the unique circumstances of your claim and help design a strategy to protect your rights and fight for the compensation to which you are entitled.
If Another Driver Has Left You Injured, Contact a Skilled Philadelphia Car Accident Attorney Today
Even a minor car accident with what seems like minimal injuries can be extremely difficult to process and have lasting consequences. If another driver’s negligence caused an accident that left you injured, your legal rights and your claim are important. The dedicated car accident attorneys at The Levin Firm in Philadelphia have the experience, commitment, and determination to help navigate your claim and place you in the best position possible while you focus on your recovery. We’re here to help, so please contact or call us at 215-825-5183 today.