Pennsylvania adheres to a policy of “choice” no-fault automobile liability insurance. An individual who chooses no-fault insurance coverage must file a claim under their own personal injury protection coverage if they want to seek financial compensation for their injuries. The injuries associated with an automobile accident must satisfy specific thresholds if you want to assert a third-party insurance claim against the driver responsible for causing your injuries. 

Comparative Negligence and Automobile Accident Cases in Pennsylvania 

It is possible that you were partly responsible for causing the automobile accident in which you suffered injuries. The State of Pennsylvania adopts a modified comparative negligence scheme. The financial award provided to the injured party may be reduced according to the degree of fault attributable to the injured party. 

Comparative negligence refers to the degree of fault that can be attributed to an injured party who is bringing legal claims against a defendant. For example, a plaintiff may be 20% at fault for causing the automobile accident, and this means they will have their financial award reduced by 20% at the conclusion of the case. The principles of comparative negligence are applied in personal injury cases to make the outcome more equitable. 

The Statute of Limitations for Personal Injury Actions In Pennsylvania 

The statute of limitations is a time bar for bringing legal claims against a defendant. If you do not assert your legal claims within the statute of limitations period, then you will be unable to protect your legal interests. As a plaintiff, you cannot rest on your rights, and you are encouraged to bring your legal claims as soon as possible after the date of the injury. The longer the delay between the date of the injury and the date of the filing of the complaint, the more likely it is that necessary evidence will be less reliable or unavailable. 

The statute of limitations for personal injury actions in Pennsylvania is two years from the date of the injury. What this means is that from the date of the accident you have two years to file any legal claims related to personal injuries. If you attempt to file your legal claims after the two year statute of limitations, then you will not be able to seek monetary compensation for your injuries. 

Sometimes the statute of limitations period will not begin to “run” until the injured party is aware of their injuries. For example, a patient returning from surgery may not be aware of their injuries until weeks or months after the date of their surgery. In this case, the statute of limitations period would begin to count down when the patient acquires knowledge of their injuries. 

The Benefits of Retaining an Experienced Attorney 

Retaining an experienced attorney will allow you to take advantage of the attorney-client privilege and attorney-client confidentiality. The communications you have with your attorney are protected, and this helps you develop an effective case strategy. Your legal representative will be able to protect your interests and help you keep specific information private so it does not damage your case. 

A lawyer will also help you with filings, deadlines, and discovery throughout the course of your case. If you miss deadlines or make the judge angry then you risk harming your case. By retaining legal counsel you will have a better chance of obtaining financial compensation for your injuries.