If you suffered injuries when the driver behind you caused a rear-end accident, you can collect compensation to cover your economic damages related to the crash. In some cases, Pennsylvania drivers may also be able to file a claim for non-economic damages, such as pain and suffering. A rear-end collision accident lawyer in Pittsburgh, PA, can help you file your claim.
The car accident attorneys at Berger and Green can explain your legal options for compensation. We can guide you through every step of the claims process or take legal action if the at-fault driver’s insurance company refuses a fair settlement. Call us today at 412-661-1400 for your complimentary case evaluation.
What Type of Damages Can I Get After a Pittsburgh Rear-End Collision?
As a part of your responsibilities under Pennsylvania auto insurance laws, you have to carry medical benefits coverage that will pay for at least $5,000 of your treatment and care after the accident. This policy should pay no matter who caused the crash. What happens if you suffer more serious injuries that quickly surpass this limit?
No matter if you opted for full or limited tort coverage, you are eligible to file a claim based on the at-fault driver’s liability insurance policy. As long as you can prove they caused your crash and injuries, you should be able to recover compensation for damages. These damages may include:
- Your remaining medical bills;
- Lost wages because of time away from work;
- The repair or replacement of your vehicle; and
- Most other accident-related expenses.
Depending on the specifics of your accident and your insurance policy, you may also be able to collect additional damages. We can help you understand your options for getting the maximum payout available to you and navigate this process for you. Contact us today to learn more.
Who Can Collect Compensation for Non-Economic Damages?
If you opted for full tort or meet one of the exceptions to limited tort, you may be able to claim non-economic losses, such as pain and suffering or emotional distress, in addition to compensatory damages. It is more complicated to recover these damages, but it is not impossible.
In most cases, if you opted for limited tort insurance, you cannot recover pain and suffering damages. However, there are some exceptions that make you eligible. The primary exception is the serious injury threshold. A serious injury is one that results in a serious impairment of a bodily function, permanent disfigurement, or death. When you suffer a serious injury and can provide the documentation to prove it, you become eligible to file a claim for pain and suffering damages.
Other exceptions include:
- The driver was under the influence of drugs or alcohol, the courts convicted them, or the driver accepted entrance into an Accelerated Rehabilitative Disposition (ARD) program;
- The at-fault driver registered their vehicle in another state;
- The driver intentionally caused the accident to harm themselves or others;
- The accident occurred because of an auto defect in the design, manufacturing, repair, or maintenance of either vehicle involved; and
- The at-fault driver did not have auto insurance.
When we meet for your initial consultation, we will discuss these exceptions. Most commonly, clients meet the serious injury threshold. We can offer advice about getting the maximum payout available based on the facts of your case and file your claim on your behalf.
How Can a Lawyer Help Me Get the Money I Deserve?
We offer every rear-end accident victim the opportunity to discuss their collision with a member of our team who can offer a fair case evaluation, explain their legal options for compensation, and give advice about how we recommend they proceed. After this conversation, we often offer our assistance recovering the money owed to them. When we handle this type of claim, we do so on a contingency basis. This means our clients do not pay any attorney’s fees unless and until we recover damages for them.
If you decide to let us handle your case, we will immediately begin our investigation into your accident. We will:
- Identify the liable party or parties;
- Prove they acted with negligence and caused your injuries;
- Collect evidence to support your claim;
- File your medical benefits claim, if necessary;
- File for any available damages from the at-fault driver’s liability insurer; and
- File a personal injury lawsuit against the at-fault motorist, if necessary.
All types of motor vehicle accident claims have their own complexities. The most common rear-end collision injuries are often difficult to prove because they affect the soft tissues of the neck and back. When we file a claim based on these injuries—especially if we are pursuing pain and suffering damages based on the serious injury threshold—we must carefully analyze your injuries. We must identify evidence to carefully document:
- How and when your doctor diagnosed your injuries;
- The type of treatment you received;
- How long you received treatment;
- The residual pain, limited range of motion, and other issues you suffer after completing treatment;
- Any future or ongoing care, such as needing prescription pain relief;
- Any activities of daily living or work-related tasks you can no longer manage on your own; and
- Any other way your injury affects your daily life.
How Long Do I Have to Take Action?
Under the statute of limitations, you have two years from the date of the accident to file a lawsuit against an at-fault driver in Pennsylvania. We recommend calling us as soon as possible if a negligent driver caused your Pittsburgh rear-end crash.
In most cases, we never need to file a personal injury lawsuit. We can usually negotiate a fair settlement with the insurance company involved and recover the settlement a client deserves. However, we need to ensure we have the option to sue. This provides us with much-needed leverage during negotiations.
Contact a Rear-End Collision Accident Lawyer in Pittsburgh Today.
Berger and Green offers free case reviews and consultations to rear-end accident victims. We can help you understand how the Pennsylvania auto insurance laws work and fight for the full amount of compensation due to you based on your policy, the policy of the driver who caused the crash, and the details of your accident. Call us today at 412-661-1400 for your complimentary case evaluation.