AREAS OF PRACTICE
Full Tort vs Limited Tort
Personal Injuries are often the unfortunate result of an car accident. The type of insurance you have can effect your ability to make a claim for those injuries against the responsible party. Remember to protect your family by requesting "Full Tort" when you purchase motor vehicle insurance. Full Tort gives you the right to make a claim for pain and suffering for your injuries. Limited Tort restricts those rights and only permits you to bring a claim for pain and suffering when certain exceptions apply. The difference in premium cost between the two is relatively small but the impact on you and your family can be great. That is why we recommend you choose the Full Tort option.
First Party Benefits
First party benefits include benefits for medical, income loss, accidental loss and funeral benefits. First Party medical coverage pays your medical bills up to the limit you purchased regardless of whether the accident was your fault, or the fault of another driver. Pennsylvania law only requires an owner to purchase medical benefit coverage of $5,000.00. However, you may purchase a greater amount for an additional premium to protect you and your family. Other first party benefits including income loss are optional.
Uninsured and Uninsured (UM/UIM) Motorist Coverage
Pennsylvania law also allows the purchase or the rejection of Uninsured Motorist Coverage (UM) and Underinsured Motorist Coverage (UIM).These coverages provide protection to the you or your family members when a negligent driver causes injury or loss and either does not have insurance or has minimal insurance insufficient to cover the loss. Unfortunately, this occurs often. These types of insurance are therefore important. As a consumer, you have the choice not to purchase UM or UIM insurance at all, purchase an amount less than the basic liability coverages or to purchase an amount equal to but not greater than the liability coverages you choose.
The attorneys at Nikolaus & Hohenadel, LLP recommend that you purchase UM and UIM insurance up to the maximum allowed by the law. That is, an amount equal to the amount of your liability insurance. For example, if an insured has $100,000.00 of liability insurance, he or she can purchase up to $100,000.00 in UM/UIM coverage. A brief discussion with your insurance agent will reveal that UM and UIM is relatively inexpensive compared to some of the other coverages on your policy.
Finally, Pennsylvania law also permits the owner of a motor vehicle to "stack" UM and UIM coverages. This "stacking" of coverages usually occurs when more than one motor vehicle is insured in a policy, and permits an insured to multiply the coverage available by the number of vehicles insured on the policy. This ability to stack may be elected or waived. We recommend that you affirmatively elect stacking if you have more than one motor vehicle insured on your policy.
If you have been injured in an accident as the result of someone else's negligence, please call attorneys Jack Hohenadel or John C. Hohenadel at (717) 299-3726 or contact us through this site for a free consultation. Since we work on a contingent fee basis, we only get paid when you do.