Auto Accident For Pa Car Accident Law
Upcoming SlideShare
Loading in...5
×
 

Auto Accident For Pa Car Accident Law

on

  • 2,226 views

A Guide for Auto Accident Victims

A Guide for Auto Accident Victims

Statistics

Views

Total Views
2,226
Views on SlideShare
2,226
Embed Views
0

Actions

Likes
2
Downloads
7
Comments
0

0 Embeds 0

No embeds

Accessibility

Categories

Upload Details

Uploaded via as Adobe PDF

Usage Rights

© All Rights Reserved

Report content

Flagged as inappropriate Flag as inappropriate
Flag as inappropriate

Select your reason for flagging this presentation as inappropriate.

Cancel
  • Full Name Full Name Comment goes here.
    Are you sure you want to
    Your message goes here
    Processing…
Post Comment
Edit your comment

Auto Accident For Pa Car Accident Law Auto Accident For Pa Car Accident Law Document Transcript

  • PA Car Accident Free No Obligation Case Review. Toll Free (866) 930-8484 LAW. C O M A guide FOR AuTO ACCideNT ViCTims You are an auto accident victim. You and your family may suffer property damage, terrible injuries, or even death. You may experience terrible pain and suffering. many accident victims are unable to work for months or some- times, forever. Life will be different. You need help. For more than 20 years, Pennsylvania Attorney Jon Ostroff has helped auto accident victims and their families. Your hard ques- tions are answered with compassion and understanding. There’s no double talk and no complex terminology. We believe this approach is best for you, and very different from what you find on other legal websites. Prepared by Lawyers at Ostroff Injury Law. Contact Jon today for your free legal, no-obligation consultation Call: (800) 818-8148 or Read more information online at: www.PA-CAR-ACCIDENT-LAw.COM
  • PA Car Accident Free No Obligation Case Review. Toll Free (866) 930-8484 L AW. C O M For more than 20 years, Pennsylvania Attorney Jon Ostroff has helped auto accident vic- tims and their families. Your hard questions are answered with compassion and under- standing. There’s no double talk and no complex terminology. We believe this approach is best for you, and very different from what you find on other legal websites. TAbLe OF CONTeNTs: NO FAuLT iNsuRANCe, FiRsT PARTY beNeFiTs, exCePTiONs TO LimiTed TORT . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 LimiTed TORT, PeNNsYLVANiA mOTOR VehiCLe FiNANCiAL ResPONsibiLiTY LAW . . . . . . . . . . . . 4 PAYiNg YOuR mediCAL biLLs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5 NOT iNsuRed, hiRiNg A PeRsONAL iNJuRY LAWYeR . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 uNiNsuRed mOTORisT & uNdeRiNsuRed mOTORisT . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7 POLiCe RePORT misTAkes, WiTNesses . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8 dRuNk dRiVeRs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9 uNdeRAge dRiNkiNg, dui (dRiViNg uNdeR The iNFLueNCe) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 CAR ACCideNT PROPeRTY dAmAge . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11 CAR VALue & iNsuRANCe COmPANies . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12 iNJuRed biCYCLisTs ANd PedesTRiANs, biCYCLe mANuFACTuRiNg deFeCT . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13 PedesTRiAN ACCideNTs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14 hiRiNg AN ATTORNeY TO FOR AN AuTO ACCideNT . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15 sTATuTe OF LimiTATiONs, AFFORdiNg A PeRsONAL iNJuRY LAWYeR . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16 AuTO ACCideNT ViCTims’ gLOssARY . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17-18 AbOuT PA CAR ACCideNT LAW . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19 A GuIDE fOR AuTO ACCIDENT VICTIMs Prepared by Lawyers at Ostroff Injury Law in conjunction with the law offices of Anapol Schwartz. © 2009 All Rights Reserved. Read more information online at www.PA-CAR-ACCIDENT-LAw.COM 2
  • PA Car Accident Free No Obligation Case Review. Toll Free (866) 930-8484 L AW. C O M NO FAuLT iNsuRANCe Why is my insurance company responsible for my medical bills when the other driver was at fault? Pennsylvania is a no fault insurance state. Regardless of whose fault the ac- cident was (yours or the other driver’s) -- your insurance company will pay for certain benefits. Can I still file a claim if I have limited tort car insurance? because you have somewhat discounted insurance, your right to sue for cer- tain damages is limited if you selected limited tort insurance. Of course, there are always exceptions. if your claim does not fall under one of the exceptions set forth below; you will be prevented from filing a lawsuit for your pain and suffering. However, limited tort insurance does not prevent you from filing a lawsuit to recover certain expenses, such as wage loss that you incurred as a result of injuries sustained in the accident caused by the fault of another driver. WhAT ARe FiRsT You may also be entitled to recover other out of pocket expenses related to your PARTY beNeFiTs? automobile accident. First Party Benefits are the insur- ance benefits you purchase to protect you, your household members, and below is a list of automatic exceptions where you can recover money for your passengers in your vehicle. These pain and suffering, even if you have a limited tort insurance policy. benefits include coverage for reason- able and necessary medical treatment Exceptions to Limited Tort resulting from a car accident and in- • The driver who was at fault is registered out of state. come loss if you are unable to work • The driver who is at fault is convicted of dui. as a result of injuries suffered in a car • You were a passenger in a commercial vehicle such as a taxi, bus, accident. or tractor trailer. • You were on a motorcycle Contact Ostroff Injury • You were a pedestrian Law to learn about the complexi- ties of auto accident insurance and • Your injuries are considered a serious impairment to a significant bodily function. your rights. A GuIDE fOR AuTO ACCIDENT VICTIMs Prepared by Lawyers at Ostroff Injury Law in conjunction with the law offices of Anapol Schwartz. © 2009 All Rights Reserved. Read more information online at www.PA-CAR-ACCIDENT-LAw.COM 
  • PA Car Accident Free No Obligation Case Review. Toll Free (866) 930-8484 L AW. C O M What kind of injuries qualify for What is the Pennsylvania motor compensation even with limited Vehicle Financial Responsibility tort? Law? injuries incurred during your auto accident must be con- The MVFRL defines your rights when sidered a serious impairment of a significant bodily func- injured in a car accident. What rights do tion. unfortunately, juries in counties across Pennsylvania you have? are not consistent in the way they decide whether an injury is serious enough to overcome this limited tort require- every insurance policy covering motor vehicles must ment. generally, if your injury required you to have sur- provide medical coverage of at least $5,000. The follow- gery, it will be serious enough to overcome limited tort in ing benefits must be available for purchase but coverage most of the counties in Pennsylvania. is not mandatory: it is harder to require whether injuries that do not require • Reasonable medical and rehabilitation up to surgery will overcome limited tort. This is a complex $100,000 question, one you should discuss with an experienced auto • extraordinary medical and rehabilitation accident lawyer, as it is often based on each victim’s situ- with coverage limits from $100,000 to ation. The impact on your specific job, the length of time $1,000,000 your injury lasts, and the degree of pain from your injury • Income loss benefits to include 80 percent of are just some of the many factors that need to be discussed actual loss of your gross income and considered with the help of a knowledgeable attorney like Jon Ostroff and the attorneys at Ostroff injury Law. • Death benefit up to at least $25,000 paid to the insured’s personal representative • Funeral benefits of $2,500 What’s the difference between limited tort and full tort insurance? Full tort coverage gives you the unlimited right to sue for automobile-related non-economic damages such as pain and suffering caused by the carelessness of another driver. Limited tort coverage allows you to sue for these damages only if you suffer a serious injury. A GuIDE fOR AuTO ACCIDENT VICTIMs Prepared by Lawyers at Ostroff Injury Law in conjunction with the law offices of Anapol Schwartz. © 2009 All Rights Reserved. Read more information online at www.PA-CAR-ACCIDENT-LAw.COM 4
  • PA Car Accident Free No Obligation Case Review. Toll Free (866) 930-8484 L AW. C O M WhO PAYs YOuR mediCAL biLLs? • if you own an insured motor vehicle, your insurance • if you do not own a motor vehicle and don’t reside company will pay your medical bills. Your insurance with a relative who owns an insured motor vehicle, company should not increase your premiums if the ac- then the insurance on the vehicle you are driving, or cident was not your fault. a passenger in will be responsible for your medical • if you do not own a motor vehicle, but you live with bills. a relative who does own a motor vehicle, then their • if there are no owned or insured motor vehicles in your insurance company will be responsible for your medi- household, and no insurance on the vehicle you are cal bills. Their insurance company should not increase a passenger in, or you were a pedestrian or bicyclist, their premiums if the accident was not their fault or then the insurance on the vehicle at fault is responsible your fault. for your medical bills. Can I recover money if I was injured as a passenger in a car with a driver that was at fault? What if i’m related to the at fault driver of my vehicle? if you were injured as a passenger and the driver of your car was at fault, you can recover money against their insurance company. insurance is intended to protect you, or any family member, from being injured by any driver, even if that driver is a member of your family. in reality, your case is much more between you and your insurer then it is between you and your family member, or whoever it was that was driving the car you occupied. since you are in charge of whether to accept a settlement offer or not, you are also in charge of whether to accept a settlement if it means not going to court, or even filing a lawsuit, against your at fault friend or family member. At Ostroff Injury Law, most of our cases are settled without ever having to file a lawsuit. A GuIDE fOR AuTO ACCIDENT VICTIMs Prepared by Lawyers at Ostroff Injury Law in conjunction with the law offices of Anapol Schwartz. © 2009 All Rights Reserved. Read more information online at www.PA-CAR-ACCIDENT-LAw.COM 
  • PA Car Accident Free No Obligation Case Review. Toll Free (866) 930-8484 L AW. C O M iF mY CAR WAs NOT iNsuRed ON The dATe OF The ACCideNT, CAN i sTiLL geT sOme beNeFiTs? If the car you drove is owned by you and registered in Pennsylvania but not insured at the time of the accident, Pennsylvania will impose certain penalties on you. While you cannot obtain any medical benefits from any auto insurer, if you have health insurance, you can submit your medical bills to your health insurance company. • As a further penalty, you will be treated as if you selected the limited tort insurance option, so please read our discussion above as to when you can recover for your pain and suffering. There are exceptions to limited tort that may help you. • if you have no health insurance, a competent personal injury lawyer may be able to arrange for your doctors to wait to be paid until you get paid for your pain and suffering claim. • if you don’t own a motor vehicle, or are uninsured and another operator was at fault, your medical bills will be the responsibility of the other vehicle’s insurance carrier. Hiring a Personal Injury Lawyer even if you have an uninsured vehicle, it’s still possible that a com- petent personal injury lawyer can get you the medical care you re- quire, can get your medical bills paid, and can obtain a recovery for your pain and suffering. With these complex issues, having an attorney from Ostroff Injury Law in your corner is the way to go. Never trust your insurance company or any insurance company to give you all of your options. A GuIDE fOR AuTO ACCIDENT VICTIMs Prepared by Lawyers at Ostroff Injury Law in conjunction with the law offices of Anapol Schwartz. © 2009 All Rights Reserved. Read more information online at www.PA-CAR-ACCIDENT-LAw.COM 
  • PA Car Accident Free No Obligation Case Review. Toll Free (866) 930-8484 L AW. C O M The other driver was at fault and uninsured. What can I do? if the other driver was at fault and not insured, you may still be able to recover money for your pain and suffering. if the car you drove or any car owned by a relative who resides with you was insured, there may be a benefit available to you under any such insurance policies. in Pennsylvania, many insured drivers have a benefit known as UninsUred mOTORisT & uninsured motorist coverage, also referred to as um. This coverage UnderinsUred mOTORisT can be a good source of recovery for people injured by an uninsured Why do i need um and uim insurance? driver. uninsured motorist (um) coverage protects you if you are injured in a car Contact PA Car Accident Law. accident and the driver who caused the accident does not have auto liability Learn more about um coverage. insurance. You can also purchase underinsured motor (uim) coverage which will protect you if you are injured in an accident and the driver responsible does not have enough insurance to totally compensate you for your injuries. here in Pennsylvania, our state law requires a driver to carry only $15,000 worth of liability insurance. so, if someone carrying only the minimum $15,000 in liability insurance injures you, your underinsurance (uim) cover- age would offer protection if your pain and suffering would have a value of more than $15,000. As a Pennsylvania driver both um and uim coverage is optional. because of financial restraints or lack of education about insurance (and yes, it’s very complex) people may opt not to buy um or uim coverage. before opting not to buy, ask your insurance agent what the price difference is before you agree to give up this important protection. um and uim coverage is one of the cheapest, but one of the most important coverages you can carry on your insurance policy. A GuIDE fOR AuTO ACCIDENT VICTIMs Prepared by Lawyers at Ostroff Injury Law in conjunction with the law offices of Anapol Schwartz. © 2009 All Rights Reserved. Read more information online at www.PA-CAR-ACCIDENT-LAw.COM 
  • PA Car Accident Free No Obligation Case Review. Toll Free (866) 930-8484 L AW. C O M Ostroff Injury Law • Pennsylvania auto accident victims’ attorney Jon Ostroff has obtained recoveries for cli- ents who were initially blamed by the police. One such re- covery was in excess of $5 million. • in one small rural Pennsylva- nia town, Jon Ostroff proved Police errors in reporting auto accidents: police officers wrong in two HOW TO OVeRCOMe POLICe different accidents and recov- ered almost $6 million in fa- RePORT MIsTakes vor of his clients. What can I do if the police say it’s my fault but they’re What if the witnesses didn’t wrong? see anything? Police officers frequently make mistakes. Police officers are under serious time some of the most important witnesses constraints when at the scene of an accident and often have limited training to didn’t see the actual accident. good investigate the cause of an accident. At any given moment they may be called to lawyers often find witnesses who rush away to another emergency. if you believe that you’re not at fault, contact may not have seen the accident but Jon Ostroff. Jon has won many cases that started out with the police blaming can testify about other circumstances Jon’s client an accident. that they did see which may be just as important. Perhaps they saw the driv- Do police reports ever get the facts wrong? er talking on a cell phone? maybe they saw the at fault party drinking Yes, see above. Police mistakes happen during the chaos of an auto accident shortly before the accident and spin scene. That’s why retaining a savvy and knowledgeable auto accident victim out their tires flying out of a parking lawyer is so important. good lawyers go to the scene of the accident. good lot. lawyers look for witnesses who saw the accident, witnesses who heard the ac- cident, and experts knowledgeable about auto accidents. good lawyers know Your insurance company will never how to ask the right questions in order to obtain the right answers. fight like this for you. Never forget, anything an insurance company of- If you say it’s not your fault, then it’s definitely worth a call fers you is probably better for them than it is for you. to Pa Car accident Law at (866) 930-8484. A GuIDE fOR AuTO ACCIDENT VICTIMs Prepared by Lawyers at Ostroff Injury Law in conjunction with the law offices of Anapol Schwartz. © 2009 All Rights Reserved. Read more information online at www.PA-CAR-ACCIDENT-LAw.COM 8
  • PA Car Accident Free No Obligation Case Review. Toll Free (866) 930-8484 L AW. C O M drunk driver caused my injuries. WhAT ARe mY RighTs? Can I sue a bar for serving the drunk driver when he was visibly intoxicated? suing a bar can be tricky. many bars are not required to car- ry insurance for these types of lawsuits. Worse, many bars are worth virtually nothing. Obtaining a judgment against a worthless bar is no real value to the victim. in order to hold a bar responsible for a drunk driving accident in Pennsylva- nia, the victim has the burden of proving that the bar served the at fault party while they were visibly intoxicated. When is the best time to gather evidence if What is the legal limit for driving while in- you were injured by a DUI driver? toxicated in Pennsylvania? The best time to gather this evidence is immediately after in February 2006, Pennsylvania reduced the legal blood al- a dui accident when the potential witnesses at the bar saw cohol limit for driving under the influence of alcohol from the at fault driver served alcohol while he was visibly in- .10% to .08%. however, at times, medical testimony can toxicated. more importantly, these witnesses are usually establish that a driver was impaired at a lower blood alcohol more cooperative when they are emotional right after an level. accident. Witnesses tend to lose interest in these types of lawsuits very quickly. While there are other ways to prove in Pennsylvania, mothers Against drunk driving (mAdd) that a bartender served alcohol to a visibly intoxicated per- is one of the best resources for obtaining the names of at- son, live witnesses who actually saw the intoxicated person torneys who are well regarded for representing victims of being served are best. drunk drivers You can reach the Pennsylvania state office of MaDD by calling 1-800-848-6233. Your best bet is to find a lawyer like Jon Ostroff who is experienced in representing the victims of drunk driving ac- Ostroff injury Law built its reputation on helping families cidents. You need a lawyer who will act quickly by digging that were devastated by dui drivers. how can Pennsylvania in to investigate a potential case against the bar. Attorney Jon Ostroff help you? A GuIDE fOR AuTO ACCIDENT VICTIMs Prepared by Lawyers at Ostroff Injury Law in conjunction with the law offices of Anapol Schwartz. © 2009 All Rights Reserved. Read more information online at www.PA-CAR-ACCIDENT-LAw.COM 9
  • PA Car Accident Free No Obligation Case Review. Toll Free (866) 930-8484 L AW. C O M CAN i sue The PAReNTs? What are the laws outlining DUI? in the united states, a “dram shop” case is the legal term for a bar, tav- ern, or wherever alcoholic beverages are sold. The word dram comes from a previous time when alcoholic bev- erages were sold by the dram or small unit of liquid. dram shop liability refers to the body of law governing the liability of taverns, liquor stores and other commercial businesses that serve alcoholic beverages. dram shop laws establish the liabil- ity arising out of the sale of alcohol to visibly intoxicated people or mi- nors who subsequently cause death or injury to third-parties—those not having a relationship to the bar, as a result of alcohol-related car crashes and other accidents. my 17 year old son was the passenger in a car driven by another drunk teen who became in- The dram shop laws are intended to protect the general public from the toxicated while at a party where his parents hazards of irresponsibly serving al- cohol to minors and intoxicated pa- served them beer under supervision. trons. Yes, you can sue the parents. What you describe is known as the social host theory of liability. if the social host knowingly provided alcohol to a minor, or a visibly intoxicated person and that person injured you, you may sue the host over the injuries caused to you, or your loved one. A GuIDE fOR AuTO ACCIDENT VICTIMs Prepared by Lawyers at Ostroff Injury Law in conjunction with the law offices of Anapol Schwartz. © 2009 All Rights Reserved. Read more information online at www.PA-CAR-ACCIDENT-LAw.COM 10
  • PA Car Accident Free No Obligation Case Review. Toll Free (866) 930-8484 L AW. C O M dAmAge TO mY CAR: i OWe The bANk mORe ThAN mY CAR iNsuRANCe COmPA- NY WiLL PAY me FOR mY CAR? auto damage insurance adjusters put a lot of pressure on car accident victims. insurance adjusters may provide you with a complex document gathered from various databases which purportedly supports their assessment of fair market value. insurance adjusters may of- fer you far less than your vehicle is worth. insurance adjusters may delay the process of paying for your car because they know you are feeling a financial pinch from paying for the car rental yourself. Their goal is to have you be grateful and to take whatever amount they offer you. buyer awareness is important: the unfortunate car accident victim has much to contend with. Remember, the manner in which insurance adjusters determine the value of your car is not an exact science. You can do your own comparative research by checking out car values in neighboring states within 100 miles. insurance companies will often not offer fair market value for wrecked vehicles. insurance companies will not consider the salvage value. insurance companies do not have your best interests in mind. A GuIDE fOR AuTO ACCIDENT VICTIMs Prepared by Lawyers at Ostroff Injury Law in conjunction with the law offices of Anapol Schwartz. © 2009 All Rights Reserved. Read more information online at www.PA-CAR-ACCIDENT-LAw.COM 11
  • PA Car Accident Free No Obligation Case Review. Toll Free (866) 930-8484 L AW. C O M What if I owe the bank more money than my The other driver’s insurance company called damaged car is now worth? me, should I talk to them? Often you will end up owing the bank the difference between No! You must remember that insurance companies are in the the amount you owed the bank and the value of the car. Can business of making money. Look at the skyline of any ma- you make mechanical repairs and forget about the cosmetic jor city and notice that insurance companies often have the repairs? Are you willing to have the repairs made with used tallest buildings. They make as much or more money than parts vs. factory manufactured or Oem parts? virtually any other major companies! You do not want to talk to those insurance companies without the benefit of an This is why retaining the right attorney is important – your attorney helping you. Remember, they already have attor- attorney should ensure that you are fully compensated for neys helping them! pain and suffering and the expenses related to your accident and your injuries. This kind of recovery may be multiples of The insurance companies are not your friend today or any what you lost on your car. day. if the adjuster is really nice, beware! The more they get you talking about your car accident, the happier they are and How does the insurance company devalue the better it is for them. my car? You probably have never been in an accident before and for insurance companies have no shortage of tricks up their something this serious and important, you should rely on Jon sleeve. Your car may have been in “excellent” condition be- Ostroff, a skilled attorney who has dealt with these big pow- fore an accident, but the adjuster classifies it as “fair” so it’s erful insurance companies for many years. worth less. some other common tricks are to ignore those car features that add value to your car such as sunroofs, up- What if my car is not insured? Can I still file graded radio, sports package vs. luxury package, etc. if you a claim? bought your car very recently, you can even get the amount you paid instead of the book value. Possibly, yes. The facts differ in every case. What if my car is totaled? Tell the lawyers at PA Car Accident Law what happened and find out what your legal options are. in Pennsylvania, if the damage of your vehicle costs more to repair than 80 percent of the vehicle value; your vehicle will be considered “totaled.” The value of a totaled vehicle is determined by averaging the price set forth in the NAdA evaluation guide and the Red book which is used by banks to value cars. A GuIDE fOR AuTO ACCIDENT VICTIMs Prepared by Lawyers at Ostroff Injury Law in conjunction with the law offices of Anapol Schwartz. © 2009 All Rights Reserved. Read more information online at www.PA-CAR-ACCIDENT-LAw.COM 12
  • PA Car Accident Free No Obligation Case Review. Toll Free (866) 930-8484 L AW. C O M iNJuRed WhiLe RidiNg A bike another possibility is that a bike accident was caused OR WALkiNg As A PedesTRiAN? by a bad bicycle manufac- turing defect or design. bicyclists and pedestrians can suffer serious injuries and fatality from a severe impact with All scenarios are taken into consid- cars, trucks, and buses. eration by a knowledgeable personal injury lawyer. According to the Na- I was bicycling to work when I was hit by a car. Can I sue tional Highway Traffic Safety Ad- the driver? ministration (NhTsA), there were driver negligence is one of the most common causes of bicycle accidents. approximately 45,000 bicycle ac- drivers of cars, buses, and trucks have a responsibility to share the road with cidents in the united states during bicyclists. If a driver is driving under the influence of alcohol or distracted by 2006. An estimated 44,000 resulted his cell phone, he or she can be held liable for any injuries or other damages in injury, and more than 700 proved they cause to a bicyclist. to be fatal. bicycle accidents may also be caused by poor road design, poor bike lane de- sign, traffic signal malfunctions, bad road signage, and negligent traffic safety officers which mean the municipal entity, road maintenance crew, or local traf- fic officials can be found liable for any injuries or damage that occur. A GuIDE fOR AuTO ACCIDENT VICTIMs Prepared by Lawyers at Ostroff Injury Law in conjunction with the law offices of Anapol Schwartz. © 2009 All Rights Reserved. Read more information online at www.PA-CAR-ACCIDENT-LAw.COM 1
  • PA Car Accident Free No Obligation Case Review. Toll Free (866) 930-8484 L AW. C O M PedesTRiAN ACCideNTs Too many pedestrian accidents hap- pen at dusk or darkness. Other causes of pedestrian accidents include poor road and sidewalk design, traffic sig- nal malfunctions, poor road signage, falling debris, and unsafe construc- tion sites. in 2006, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administra- tion (NhTsA), there were approxi- mY mOTheR WAs CROssiNg The mately 66,000 pedestrian accidents in the united states. Of those pedes- sTReeT iN A CROssWALk WheN trian accidents, an estimated 61,000 resulted in injury and more than she gOT sTRuCk bY A suV. 4,700 pedestrians died. What can we do to hold the driver accountable? Tell the lawyers at PA Car Accident Law what happened and find out Pedestrians run down by cars and other motor vehicles may suffer catastroph- what your legal options are. ic injury, including traumatic brain injury, skull fracture, spinal cord injury, amputation injuries, multiple broken bones, or death. injuries may require extensive rehabilitation to heal and some injuries may recur. serious injuries mean mounting medical bills and possible loss of income and quality of life. driver negligence such as speeding, cell phone distraction, and recklessness is the most common cause of pedestrian accidents. drivers have a responsibil- ity to yield to a pedestrian’s right of way. If a driver is under the influence of alcohol or any controlled substance or is otherwise distracted, the driver can be held responsible for injuries and damage sustained by a pedestrian. Ostroff injury Law will help get your medical bills paid, even if you don’t have health insurance! You are also entitled to file a claim for pain and suffer- ing and loss of wages if you were injured as a pedestrian. A GuIDE fOR AuTO ACCIDENT VICTIMs Prepared by Lawyers at Ostroff Injury Law in conjunction with the law offices of Anapol Schwartz. © 2009 All Rights Reserved. Read more information online at www.PA-CAR-ACCIDENT-LAw.COM 14
  • PA Car Accident Free No Obligation Case Review. Toll Free (866) 930-8484 L AW. C O M WheN shOuLd ViCTims hiRe AN ATTORNeY TO FiLe A LAWsuiT FOR AN AuTO ACCideNT? How soon should I start a lawsuit? Can you help me? I was already turned down by another lawyer. After an auto accident, you should hire an attorney quickly. Why? Your lawyer will need to pound the pavement and start Jon Ostroff’s legal reputation has been built on taking dif- asking questions and getting answers from witnesses while ficult cases. Many law firms limit their practice to uncompli- their memories are fresh. in many cases, your lawyer should cated and easy cases. We take a different approach…even if visit the accident scene and compare the police report with a fight is required. what he finds and who he interviews. The longer you wait, the more difficult it is for witnesses to remember the facts of if we believe we can win your case and ultimately recover what they saw and heard. money for you – we take your case -- even when another lawyer has turned you down. it’s that simple. I wasn’t at fault but I’m being sued. What can I do? some lawyers are not well versed in limited tort insurance; they don’t comprehend the ins and outs and all the details Just because you’re being sued doesn’t mean you are at fault and exceptions. before retaining a lawyer for your personal for an accident. The only thing better than a good defense, injury car accident case, be sure to ask whether or not a law- is a good offense. it’s not unheard of for the at fault person’s yer is experienced in limited tort insurance cases and knows lawyer to sue you because he or she may see it as the best about limited tort exceptions which are vital to recovery. way to defend their client. Find a lawyer who will take con- trol of your case and the other party. in the end – the real Other times a lawyer may not agree with your version of victim will prevail. what happened, or accept the police version on its face, or question whether your injuries are actually related to the ac- if you believe the accident wasn’t your fault and we believe cident you are contacting them about. it wasn’t your fault; you can counter sue. You can file a claim setting forth the reasons that the other party was at fault. Give us a call at 866-930-8484. We may see things your way! A GuIDE fOR AuTO ACCIDENT VICTIMs Prepared by Lawyers at Ostroff Injury Law in conjunction with the law offices of Anapol Schwartz. © 2009 All Rights Reserved. Read more information online at www.PA-CAR-ACCIDENT-LAw.COM 1
  • PA Car Accident Free No Obligation Case Review. Toll Free (866) 930-8484 L AW. C O M CAN i AFFORd TO hiRe A PeRsONAL iNJuRY LAWYeR FOR mY AuTO ACCideNT? Yes. If Jon Ostroff decides to take your case and you decide that Pa Car accident Law should represent you – we take your case on a contingency fee basis. Make sure you hire a law firm who will advance all the costs when injuries were sustained by a minor. minors have until of your lawsuit—the lawyers’ time, the expert witnesses’ his or her 20th birthday to properly file and properly serve a fees, the mountain of paperwork, administrative staff, the Complaint or Writ of summons against all responsible par- court fees, and more. You should pay nothing until you are ties. paid after your case is won. if an at fault party is a government employee or agency and What is the statute of limitations in Pa for the accident occurred within the scope of their employment, filing a personal injury lawsuit? an injured party has as little as six months to properly notify that agency or they may be prevented from obtaining a re- While you should always consult with an Attorney in this covery. regard, you generally have two years to file a lawsuit against all parties who you believe were at fault or who you intend to The statute of limitations prevents many accident victims obtain recovery from. You will waive your ability to obtain from obtaining a recovery for their injuries and losses than compensation from parties not sued during this time frame. any other law in Pennsylvania. in this regard it’s critical that Once a party is sued, they must also be properly served with injured parties obtain and consult a qualified attorney. the filed Complaint or Writ of Summons. One exception is A GuIDE fOR AuTO ACCIDENT VICTIMs Prepared by Lawyers at Ostroff Injury Law in conjunction with the law offices of Anapol Schwartz. © 2009 All Rights Reserved. Read more information online at www.PA-CAR-ACCIDENT-LAw.COM 1
  • PA Car Accident Free No Obligation Case Review. Toll Free (866) 930-8484 L AW. C O M iNdex: ACCideNT ViCTims’ gLOssARY AuTO Glossary: Here is some terminology used in this auto accident victim resource. We hope these explanations provide you with a better understanding of how to proceed with your personal injury claim. Contingency fee – A contingency fee is a method of paying a lawyer for legal representation. instead of paying hourly or a per job fee, the lawyer receives a percentage of the money that his or her client obtains after settling or winning their case. Contingency fees are used frequently with personal injury cases. Full tort - Full tort allows a motorist and an insurance policyholder to retain unrestricted rights to bring a lawsuit against the negligent party in an automobile accident. Limited tort – Limited tort means your rights to sue for certain damages are limited. Yet, there are exceptions that a well-versed personal injury law firm will know how to apply and use to overcome the obstacles of limited tort. Minimal coverage amount - most states require you have car insurance and have laws that outline the minimum level of coverage you must buy. in states that don’t, you must prove you have enough assets in case you caused the accident. if you don’t have enough assets, you will be required to buy car insurance. Yet, the minimum limits your state requires may not be adequate. A car accident can cost far more than the limits mandated by most states. The insurance information institute recommends you carry at least $100,000 of liability bodily injury pro- tection per person and $300,000 per accident (known as 100/300). We strongly recommend that you pay the small increase in your premium and select the full tort option, and um/uim insurance. These will be critical if you wish to protect your family. NaDa – National Auto dealers Association car price guides similar to kelly blue book and edmund’s. This is used to establish a damaged cars value. No fault - if your state has a no-fault auto insurance law, your policy must pay medical bills for you and your passengers regardless of who caused the accident. No-fault laws are intended to keep insurance fraud down. Pennsylvania is a no fault state. A GuIDE fOR AuTO ACCIDENT VICTIMs Prepared by Lawyers at Ostroff Injury Law in conjunction with the law offices of Anapol Schwartz. © 2009 All Rights Reserved. Read more information online at www.PA-CAR-ACCIDENT-LAw.COM 1
  • PA Car Accident Free No Obligation Case Review. Toll Free (866) 930-8484 L AW. C O M iNdex: ACCideNT ViCTims’ gLOssARY AuTO OEM – Oem (original equipment manufacturer) is a company which produces products marketed which are repackaged to be sold under the brand of a different company. Pain and suffering – Pain and suffering has different meanings to different people and different entities. insurance companies, of course, will try to diminish the value of pain and suffering. in addition to losses associated with physical pain and suffering, your lawyer can ask for loss of consortium, loss of earning capacity, and loss of quality of life. Never sign anything from an insurance company unless you have your lawyer by your side. serious impairment – A serious impairment can be another vague legal term, according to the courts. The courts might not consider a herniated disk in the spine to be a serious impairment. however, if it causes you to be unable to per- form your job, it may be considered serious enough. A facial scar, loss of limb, paralysis, and most surgeries are enough to be considered a serious impairment. Tort – A private or civil wrong/injury which has violated your rights, and the law in some states (such as PA and NJ) gives you the right to seek compensation from the party who caused the injuries. Tort option - You can choose to change your policy at any time (before an accident). You can elect to go from limited tort to full tort or from full tort to limited tort. because of cost, many policyholders choose to reject full tort, but we strongly recommend against this. it may be better to reduce other benefits on your policy before waiving your right to sue for most injuries as is the case with limited tort. UIM – is “underinsured motorist” insurance coverage. uim cover- age is what you purchase to protect yourself from being injured by a party who does not have enough insurance to fully compensate you or a family member for your injuries. uim coverage is relatively in- expensive. it is usually sold in conjunction with uninsured motorist coverage (um) which is supposed to protect you if you are involved in an accident with a vehicle that either has no insurance, is stolen, or is unidentified ( hit and run). UM – uninsured motorist (see above) A GuIDE fOR AuTO ACCIDENT VICTIMs Prepared by Lawyers at Ostroff Injury Law in conjunction with the law offices of Anapol Schwartz. © 2009 All Rights Reserved. Read more information online at www.PA-CAR-ACCIDENT-LAw.COM 18
  • PA Car Accident Free no Obligation Case Review. Toll Free (866) 930-8484 L AW. C O M QuesTIOns & AnsweRs Index: You are an auto accident victim. You and your family may suffer property damage, terrible injuries, or even death. Many accident victims are unable to work for months, years, or sometimes, forever. Your life will be different. You need help. For more than 20 years, Pennsylvania Attorney Jon Ostroff has helped auto accident victims and their families. we answer hard questions with compassion and understanding. There’s no double talk or lawyer talk. Here are some of the most frequently asked questions by auto accident victims: nO FAulT InsuRAnCe Why is my insurance company responsible for the medical bills when the other driver was at fault? In states like Pennsylvania with no-fault insurance, medical bills are handled by your own insurance company, regardless who caused the accident. so, like health insurance, you are buying medical bill coverage along with your auto insurance policy. The purpose for this law is to allow you to decide how much medical protection you want no matter how much insurance the other driver has in place. If my car was not insured on the date of the accident, can I still get some benefits? If the car you drove is owned by you and registered in Pennsylvania but not insured at the time of the accident, Pennsyl- vania does impose certain penalties on you. Call Ostroff Injury law. One of our attorneys will take the time to understand your circumstances and explore the benefits that may still be available to you. What is the Pennsylvania Motor Vehicle Financial Responsibility Law? The Motor Vehicle Financial Responsibility Law, which is known as “MVFRL,” defines your rights when injured in a car accident. Jon Ostroff, personal injury lawyer and senior Partner of Ostroff Injury law, will take the time to understand what happened in your car accident and explain how the MVFRl will apply to your situation. A Guide for Auto Accident Victims Prepared by Lawyers at Ostroff Injury Law in conjunction with the law offices of Anapol Schwartz. © 2009 All Rights Reserved. Read more information online at www.PA-CAR-ACCIDENT-LAW.COM 19
  • PA Car Accident Free no Obligation Case Review. Toll Free (866) 930-8484 L AW. C O M QuesTIOns & AnsweRs Index: lIMITed TORT And MedICAl bIlls Can I receive money for my pain and suffering if I have limited tort car insurance? You chose limited tort on your insurance policy to save a few bucks on your car insurance. unfortunately, this very small discount may cost you thousands of dollars if it prevents you from recovering money for your pain and suffering. It is important for you to understand that there are exceptions to limited tort and you may still be entitled to a recovery. Call an attorney at Ostroff Injury Law to see whether we can find a way around your limited tort selection. What kinds of injuries qualify for compensation even with limited tort coverage? Injuries sustained in your auto accident must be considered a serious impairment of a significant bodily function. Unfortu- nately, juries across Pennsylvania are not consistent in the way they decide whether an injury is serious enough to get over this limited tort requirement. Ask Jon Ostroff whether he thinks your injury is serious enough to overcome your limited tort insurance if no other exceptions apply. Can I recover money if I was injured as a passenger in a car with a driver that was related to me and was at fault? You can still be fully compensated even if your spouse, sibling, or any other relative caused your accident. You purchased insurance to protect you, or any family member, from being injured by any driver, even if that driver is a member of your family. In reality, your case is much more between you and your insurer then it is between you and your family member. unInsuRed MOTORIsT And undeRInsuRed MOTORIsT Why do I need UM and UIM insurance? uninsured motorist (uM) coverage protects you if you are injured in a car accident and the driver who caused the accident does not have auto liability insurance. You may also have purchased underinsured Motorist (uIM) coverage which will protect you if you are injured in an accident and the driver responsible does not have enough insurance to fully compensate you for your damages. A Guide for Auto Accident Victims Prepared by Lawyers at Ostroff Injury Law in conjunction with the law offices of Anapol Schwartz. © 2009 All Rights Reserved. Read more information online at www.PA-CAR-ACCIDENT-LAW.COM 20
  • PA Car Accident Free no Obligation Case Review. Toll Free (866) 930-8484 L AW. C O M QuesTIOns & AnsweRs Index: POlICe eRROR What can I do if the police say it’s my fault but they’re wrong? Police officers frequently make mistakes. Police officers are under serious time constraints when at the scene of an accident and often have limited training to investigate the cause of an accident. Jon Ostroff has won cases by proving that the police reached the wrong conclusions and recovered millions of dollars for clients as a result. Call Jon and see if he agrees that you are right and the police are wrong. Do police reports ever get the facts wrong? Yes. Attorney Jon Ostroff has obtained recoveries for clients who were initially blamed by the police. One such recovery alone was in excess of $5 million. The police sometimes make mistakes. Contact Pennsylvania attorney Jon Ostroff to prove that you are right and the cops are wrong! dRunk dRIVeRs My accident was caused by a drunk driver. Can I sue the bar for serving the drunk driv- er? In order to hold a bar responsible for a drunk driving accident in Pennsylvania, the victim has the burden of proving that the bar served the at fault drunk driver while they were visibly intoxicated. My teenage son was badly injured when he and his underage friend were served beer at a party. Parents served the beer. Can we sue the parents? You can sue the parents under the “social host” liability theory. A Guide for Auto Accident Victims Prepared by Lawyers at Ostroff Injury Law in conjunction with the law offices of Anapol Schwartz. © 2009 All Rights Reserved. Read more information online at www.PA-CAR-ACCIDENT-LAW.COM 21
  • PA Car Accident Free no Obligation Case Review. Toll Free (866) 930-8484 L AW. C O M QuesTIOns & AnsweRs Index: PROPeRTY dAMAge What if I owe the bank more money than my damaged car is now worth? This is a common occurrence. Call Jon Ostroff to make sure you are exhausting every avenue to receive all of the property damage money you are due and that you are looking at every other option available to recover additional money for all of your other losses. The other driver’s insurance company called me, should I talk to them? no! Insurance companies make more money than companies in practically any other industry. They are not in the business of helping you. The less they pay you, the more they make. let your lawyer speak to them for you. InJuRed bICYClIsT, InJuRed PedesTRIAn I was bicycling to work when I was hit by a car. Can I sue the driver? driver negligence is one of the most common causes of bicycle accidents. bicycle accidents may also be caused by poor road design, poor bike lane design, traffic signal malfunctions, bad road signage, and negligent traffic safety officers. Call Jon Ostroff to see if you can recover money for the injuries you received in your bicycle accident. Jon will also help get your medical bills paid. My mother was walking in a crosswalk when she was struck by a car. Can she file a per- sonal injury claim? driver negligence such as speeding, cell phone distraction, and recklessness is the most common cause of pedestrian ac- cidents. drivers have a responsibility to yield to a pedestrian’s right of way.If you were run down by a negligent driver and you were injured, you are due compensation. even if you don’t have medical insurance available under an auto or health insurance policy, we can get your medical bills paid by the insurance company for the driver who hit you. A Guide for Auto Accident Victims Prepared by Lawyers at Ostroff Injury Law in conjunction with the law offices of Anapol Schwartz. © 2009 All Rights Reserved. Read more information online at www.PA-CAR-ACCIDENT-LAW.COM 22
  • PA Car Accident Free no Obligation Case Review. Toll Free (866) 930-8484 L AW. C O M QuesTIOns & AnsweRs Index: HIRIng A lAwYeR How soon should I hire an Attorney after an accident? AsAP, your lawyer will need to pound the pavement and start asking questions and getting answers from witnesses. Can you help me? I was already turned down by another lawyer. Jon Ostroff’s legal reputation was built on taking difficult cases. Call Jon and he’ll tell you over the phone whether he thinks he can help you. Can I afford to hire a personal injury lawyer for my auto accident? It’s simple. You don’t pay Ostroff Injury law unless and until we get you money. If you have nO MOneY, we may be able to assist you in getting a loan to get you through this difficult time....and you won’t pay your loan off unless you receive money from your case. As an auto accident victim, your world has been turned upside down. There are steps you can take to help turn the wrongs right. Take those steps now. Find out how. A Guide for Auto Accident Victims Prepared by Lawyers at Ostroff Injury Law in conjunction with the law offices of Anapol Schwartz. © 2009 All Rights Reserved. Read more information online at www.PA-CAR-ACCIDENT-LAW.COM 23
  • PA Car Accident Free No Obligation Case Review. Toll Free (866) 930-8484 L AW. C O M AbOuT PA CAR ACCideNT LAW At the helm is Pennsylvania Personal injury Attorney Jon Ostroff, a cham- pion among champions in the fight to help auto accident victims get the help they need now by expertly dealing with the complex blockades and detours presented by insurance companies. With Attorney Ostroff by your side, you can be rest assured that you and your family will receive the best possible legal consultancy and care. he and his staff offer support for the many challenges facing you after your devastating car accident. For more than 20 years Attorney Jon Ostroff has been committed to helping victims just like you, working tirelessly and diligently to help make wrongs right and bring justice in your corner. Contact Jon today for your free legal, no-obligation consultation A GuIDE fOR AuTO ACCIDENT VICTIMs Prepared by Lawyers at Ostroff Injury Law in conjunction with the law offices of Anapol Schwartz. © 2009 All Rights Reserved. Read more information online at www.PA-CAR-ACCIDENT-LAw.COM 19