If I have full coverage on my car insurance policy, am I protected?
No. Full coverage is a misnomer. It means nothing. All you can be assured of if you purchased full coverage is that your insurance agent sold you the cheapest coverage he or she could. It does not mean you purchased full tort coverage. Ordering a policy from an insurance company online is also fraught with dangers. Full tort coverage means that if you or a family member are in any kind of car accident, and any kind of accident having to do with a “motor vehicle” (like a bus, truck, motorcycle, or even if you are pedestrian or on a bicycle and hit by a car), you have unrestricted access to proceed with a claim against the at-fault driver. Limited tort means that you and your family are much more restricted in your ability to get compensated for your injuries. There are exceptions to the limited tort problem, but generally, if you have a limited tort policy your injuries must be quite series to have access to the court system to protect your rights. Also, full coverage does not mean that you purchased uninsured motorist coverage or underinsured motorist coverage. These kinds of coverage protect you in the event the at-fault driver failed to insure his or her car or failed to carry enough coverage. The point is that buying an auto insurance policy can be somewhat complicated. It is best to get as much information as you can about the kinds of coverage you need before agreeing to any policy.
If a friend borrows my car and is involved in an accident in Pennsylvania, does my insurance company pay for any damages?
Yes, unless your friend had his own insurance coverage, in which case his/her insurance coverage will be used. Also, your insurance company will not pay for any damages unless your friend had your permission to use your car. This is known as “permissive use” in insurance jargon. The kinds of damages the insurance company has to pay can vary as well. If your friend as at fault in the accident, then the insurance company may have to pay out of the liability portion of your policy for physical damages to anyone injured. So too, if there is property damage to the other driver’s car, by way of example, your insurance company would have to pay for that.
In a PA car accident, is the driver who hit me insurance company responsible for paying my medical bills?
Insurance companies in Pennsylvania injury cases often try to save money by not paying accident victims. But here’s the real story: the insurance company for the other driver is not obligated to pay you anything! If they make an offer to settle your injury case, and how much they offer depends on a multitude of factors.
In a Pennsylvania car accident case, the other guy’s insurance company does not have to pay you medical bills. Your insurance company pays your medical bills. The other insurance company is required to defend their insured in any lawsuit that you file against the other driver, and “indemnify” their uninsured up to their insured’s policy limits-that means they will pay a verdict up to the amount of insurance coverage that their insured purchased. They do not have to settle your injury case before trial, although in many case insurance companies may be willing to settle personal injury cases, including whiplash cases. If you would like more information on this subject, you should consult an experienced Pennsylvania personal injury lawyer in your area (read the article on our website also) and decide whether it is best to settle your Pennsylvania personal injury case or whether it is best to go to court against the other driver.