Have you been injured in a car accident in Bensalem? If so, contact our team of aggressive Bensalem personal injury lawyers. Our experienced legal team has nearly twenty years of experience handling serious car accident cases in Bensalem and throughout Bucks County. Contact our our Bensalem car accident lawyers today to discuss your case. The initial consultation is completely free. We only get paid if we recover money in your case.
How A Bensalem Car Accident Lawyer Can Help You
People injured in accidents must cope with agonizing pain and suffering. These injuries can seriously affect a person's life. Injured victims often require prolonged medical treatment. Medical bills are incurred. Injuries can cause people to lose time from work. A car accident can leave someone in dire financial straits and unable to provide for themselves or their families. These issues can be overwhelming. An experienced Bensalem car accident lawyer can help.
At the personal injury firm of Mattiacci Law, we help our clients with these problems. Our Bensalem accident attorneys guide our clients through the legal process and explain each step along the way. Our firm will help open the auto insurance claim so that medical bills can get paid. Our firm will perform an investigation into the accident. We will identify the people who are responsible for an accident and our clients' injuries. Our lawyers will then pursue them to get our clients compensated for their damages.
Our firm has a proven track record of results. Our personal injury lawyers have handled vehicle accidents that have resulted in recoveries such as:
- $21+ million - passengers of bus injured in turnpike accident
- $10+ million - driver injured by tractor trailer
- $1.25 million – car struck by truck
- $900,000 – truck driver injured in a car accident
- $825,000 – car accident
- $750,000 - trucking accident
- $395,000 – accident on North Broad Street in Philadelphia, PA
- $285,000 – sideswipe collision
- $250,000 – Side impact car accident
- $240,000 –pedestrian hit by passing pickup
- $240,000 - pedestrian struck by work truck
- $200,000 – airport shuttle collision
When you hire the personal injury law firm of Mattiacci Law, we will deal with other driver’s insurance company for you. We put them on notice of the claim, negotiate with them to obtain a settlement, and when necessary we file a lawsuit and bring them to court.
If you need help after an accident, contact the injury firm of Mattiacci Law today for a completely free consultation.
Common Questions After An Accident
People who have been injured in an accident in Bucks County often have many questions about the legal process. Some of these questions include:
- What should I do after a car accident?
- How will my medical bills gets paid after a car accident?
- Can I sue the driver who caused my accident?
- What types of damages can I recover for a car accident?
- What is limited tort insurance?
- How much time do I have to file a lawsuit?
Here, we will provide general answers to these questions. For more specific answers, it is important to contact a Bensalem car accident lawyer as soon as possible. That way an experienced attorney can help guide you through this process from the beginning. Contact us today for a free consultation. Our office can be reached at 215-914-6919 or toll free at 866-617-0050.
What Should I Do After A Car Accident?
There are a number of things that you may need to do after a car accident. Some general guidelines are to:
- Evaluate yourself for injuries - check yourself for any injuries. If you have been injured and need assistance, contact 911 or ask someone else to call 911. If you feel you are very seriously injured, try not to move until help arrives.
- Evaluate your passengers - determine whether your passengers, especially children, may be injured. If so, contact 911 for help or ask someone else to call if you are unable to do so.
- Get to somewhere safe - If you or your vehicle are in an unsafe place or creating a hazard, try to get out of harm's way. If your car is safe to drive, try to move it to a shoulder or safer area. If the car is unable to be moved, consider leaving it if you can find a safer place to stay until help arrives. If possible, activate your vehicle's hazard lights.
- Call 911 - police will often respond to the scene of an accident and will record important information about the crash. This can include the date, time, and location of the collision. Police will record the names of the drivers and the owners of the vehicles, the identities of any witnesses, a description of the accident, and the insurance information for the vehicles. Police can document the drivers' license information and the make, model, and license plate of the vehicles. Police can also evaluate whether any driver is under the influence of alcohol or drugs, and can determine whether any traffic violations or other criminal offenses may have been committed.
- Document the incident - if it is safe to do so, take photos of the vehicles involved in the crash, particularly if it can be safely done before any cars are moved after the collision. Ask for any report number from the police, and for a copy of any information obtained, such as the other driver's name, address, insurance company, and license plate number.
- Seek medical attention - whether or not you feel significant pain, it is best to go to an emergency room as soon as possible after a collision. If you have been seriously injured, request an ambulance. If you feel you can drive yourself, do so only if you can drive safely without endangering yourself or others, or have someone else drive you. Certain injuries can be felt immediately, while others may take some time to manifest. An evaluation by medical professionals can help identify all of your potential injuries and provide treatment to manage your injuries.
- Contact a Bensalem car accident lawyer - it is important to contact a car accident lawyer as soon as possible after the accident. An experienced personal injury lawyer can help guide you through the legal process. From opening the medical claim with auto insurance, to assisting with your property damage claim, to seeking compensation for your injuries, a Bensalem accident lawyer can help protect your interests and hold the other driver responsible.
If you have been hurt in a car accident, contact a Bensalem car accident lawyer at Mattiacci Law today. Our office can be reached at 215-914-6919 or toll free at 866-617-0050.
How Will My Medical Bills Get Paid After A Car Accident?
One of the first concerns people often have after a car accident is how their medical bills will be paid. Our accident lawyers and staff can assist in guiding you through the medical claims process.
By law in Pennsylvania, a person’s medical bills arising from a car accident first must be submitted through an available car insurance policy. Once that medical coverage through the auto insurance policy is exhausted, secondary insurance can be used. Types of secondary insurance can include health insurance, Medicare, or government-funded insurance.
Medical coverage provided through auto insurance in Pennsylvania is referred to as Personal Injury Protection (PIP). It can also be known as First Party Medical benefits. Every policy of auto insurance issued in Pennsylvania is required to provide PIP coverage. Under Pennsylvania law, private passenger cars must carry a minimum of $5,000 in PIP benefits. This is codified by 75 Pa. C.S. § 1711.
Your own auto insurance will have at least $5,000 in medical coverage to pay toward the bills caused by an accident if you own a car and have auto insurance. At times, people can have more than $5,000 in PIP if they have chosen that option.
One of the first things our firm does to assist people in getting their medical bills paid is to file an application for medical benefits. Opening a medical claim with your auto insurance is necessary prior to having the bills paid. Our firm will generally contact a client's insurance company to request an application. This is usually referred to as an "Application for First Party Benefits." This application routinely asks for information such as the details of the accident, the injuries sustained, the names of the physicians who have provided treatment, and information regarding lost time from work.
Once a claim is open, PIP coverage will then start to pay for medical bills associated with the accident. The bills will need to be submitted to the insurance carrier. Medical providers will usually bill the insurance company directly, but must know which insurance company s involved and the claim number that should be referenced in order to get the bills paid.
Additionally, some PIP coverage may cover lost income if the insured is unable to work for a time following the accident.
It is best to discuss the PIP application with an experienced car accident lawyer, who can assist in completing and submitting the form t the insurance company.
Even those who do not own their own vehicle may be eligible for PIP benefits. In Pennsylvania, the law provides that a person may apply for PIP benefits as follows:
- First, you must apply for PIP benefits on a policy on which you are listed as a named insured, such as your own vehicle;
- If you are not a named insured on a policy, an application can be made through any policy which provides coverage to you as an insured, which may include the policy of a relative with whom you live;
- If you are a passenger and are not insured through another policy, you have the ability to apply for PIP coverage through the insurance policy of the vehicle you were in at the time of the accident;
- Finally, if the vehicle you were in does not have insurance you can then apply for PIP benefits through one of the other vehicles involved in the crash.
The order of PIP coverage is governed by a Pennsylvania statute, 75 Pa. C.S.A. § 1713.
You may be able to get PIP coverage even if none of the vehicles was insured. The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania has a program called the Pennsylvania Financial Responsibility Assigned Claims Plan (PFRACP). The Assigned Claims Plan is a fund set up by the state that provides limited first party medical coverage to victims of car accidents. This fund provides up to $5,000 in benefits for medical treatment. Only Pennsylvania citizens who are not eligible for any other auto insurance coverage may qualify, with certain conditions.
Sadly, the $5,000 in PIP benefits that most people have is soon exhausted. The costs of emergency room treatment, doctor visits, physical therapy, and diagnostic tests can quickly deplete this coverage. In those situations, injured victims have to use private health insurance or other types of coverage for which they may qualify, such as Medicare or Medicaid.
Our Bensalem car accident lawyers can help guide you through the process of getting your PIP claim open. Call our firm today at 215-914-6919 or toll free at 866-617-0050. Or contact us online to set up your initial consultation.
Can I Sue The Driver Who Caused My Accident?
Generally, you can attempt to sue anyone who caused or contributed to a car accident so long as that person was negligent. A driver must be negligent in order to bring a lawsuit against that person. If the person is negligent, and that negligence causes your injuries and damages, you can bring a claim or lawsuit against that driver to seek money damages.
What is negligence? A person is negligent when he or she does something a reasonably careful person would not do under the circumstances. A person who fails to do something a reasonably careful person would do under the circumstances is also negligent.
We perform an investigation into the facts of an accident to determine whether a driver was negligent. We compare the driver's actions or failures to act against what a reasonably safe person would do. We also evaluate whether that driver's actions violated any safety rules.
For car accidents safety rules are generally referred to as as the “rules of the road.” Many of these rules are written into law. The laws governing safe driving in Pennsylvania are collected into the Pennsylvania Vehicle Code (Title 75). Our team of Bensalem car accident lawyers are familiar with this Code and have utilized it in virtually every car accident case we have handled for nearly two decades.
When a rule of the road is violated it can be strong evidence that the other driver was negligent. An example of this is a rear-end collision accident. Under Pennsylvania law, a driver is required to operate his vehicle at a speed that is slow enough for the driver to stop the car within the assured clear distance ahead.
In other words, a driver has to drive at a speed that will allow the driver to stop before hitting a car that is in front of him. While this seems like common sense, this rule is also written into law. The statute is 75 Pa. C.S.A. § 3361. This is also referred to as the "assured clear distance" rule. A violation of this rule is strong evidence of negligence.
Drivers can violate safety rules in many different ways. Our car accident lawyers have handled cases involving each of the following violations. These include:
- Speeding or traveling too fast for traffic;
- Driving too fast for weather conditions, such as snow and ice;
- Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol;
- Falling asleep behind the wheel;
- Texting while driving;
- Rear-ending another car;
- Failing to stop at a stop sign;
- Failing to yield the right of way.
Our Bensalem car accident attorneys have handled these types of car accidents for nearly twenty years. We have successfully pursued negligent drivers on behalf of our clients. Put our experience to work for you. Contact our team of accident lawyers today for a consultation. Call our office at 215-914-6919 or toll free at 866-617-0050.
What Types Of Damages Can I Recover For A Car Accident?
There are many types of damages that we try to recover for our clients. While each case is different and not all damages may be applicable to every situation, there are some that are common. Whether you can recover each of these types of damages depends on how badly injured you are and the specifics of your case.
Common types of damages that we try to obtain for our clients include:
- Physical pain and suffering: Injuries cause pain. People suffer when they are in pain. Whether it is the pain from a sprained ankle or excruciating pain from a spinal disc herniation or shattered bone, people can be compensated for their physical pain and suffering. This is money that may be paid for the actual physical pain and suffering caused by injuries.
- Mental pain and suffering: People not only sustain physical injuries in an accident but also suffer mental ones as well. Depression, anxiety, fear, depression, and sadness are all emotions that injured victims commonly experience. We generally try to seek money to compensate clients for these damages.
- Lost Wages: When people are seriously injured they often are unable to work. This results in lost wages or lost income. Whether the loss is temporary or if a person is never able to return to work, these lost wages can be calculated and a claim made for the amount of lost earnings or lost earning capacity.
- Medical bills: Auto insurance and health insurance may cover some or all of a person's bills. But often people incur co-pays, unpaid bills, or other expenses after insurance is exhausted or if insurance does not cover all recommended treatment. The amount of past and future medical bills may be claimed as damages.
- Scarring and disfigurement: money may also be claimed for the scarring and disfigurement caused by an accident. This includes scarring from cuts or lacerations suffered in a crash. It can also include scarring that results from surgery related to the accident. Scars can make people feel embarrassed, self-conscious, and depressed. They may also require separate treatment, such as scar revision surgery or other plastic surgery.
- Loss of consortium: The spouse of an injured person has a separate claim for damages. This claim is for the interruption an accident and injuries cause to the married couple's relationship. Often the uninjured spouse has to take on a larger share of the work, chores, and responsibilities of the home while the injured spouse recovers. It also includes the negative impact the injuries have on a couple's emotional, social, and intimate relationship.
Contact a Bensalem car accident lawyer at Mattiacci Law today to discuss your case. Our legal team will discuss your potential damages. Our investigation will identify the available damages you can pursue. We will build up the evidence of your damages by obtaining medical treatment records, speaking with treatment providers, and potentially hiring experts to fully develop and present the damages suffered as a result of a car accident.
What Is Limited Tort Insurance?
Knowing whether you have limited tort auto insurance is important when trying to sue someone for a car accident. Limited tort insurance is a type of car insurance coverage. It generally costs less than a full tort policy. But there is a catch. In exchange for a lower premium, people with limited tort insurance give up their right to sue another driver for damages like pain and suffering unless "serious injuries" are sustained.
Many insurance companies do not fully explain to people how choosing limited tort will affect their ability to recover damages if they are in an accident. Generally, our firm advises people to elect full tort insurance and to get as much coverage as they can afford. However, many people are not aware of what type of insurance they have until after an accident has occurred.
When a person chooses limited tort auto insurance, that person will not be able to recovery "non-economic" damages like pain and suffering unless that person suffers a “serious injury.” If a person does not suffer an injury that the law considers "serious" then that person will not be awarded money for physical and mental pain and suffering. This can make pursuing a lawsuit for these types of damages challenging.
A person who chooses limited tort insurance can still get reimbursed for "economic" damages. These would include specific monetary damages incurred for property damages, lost wages, medical bills, and other direct economic losses.
Full tort insurance will cost more than a limited tort coverage. However, a person who elects full tort auto insurance will have no limitation on their ability to sue for pain and suffering. There are times when a person with full tort insurance can be compensated for injuries that took several months to resolve, yet a person with limited tort insurance may be unable to recover damages for the same injuries and treatment.
Showing that someone with limited tort has suffered a "serious" injury depends on the fact of each case. An injury does not have to be permanent to be serious, but there are several factors that need to be evaluated. These include the type of injury, the nature of any impairment caused by the injury, the length of time the impairment lasted, the amount and type of treatment needed to correct the impairment, and other factors. See Pa. SSJI (Civ) 7.190.
If we can prove an injury is serious after examining these different factors then a client with limited tort insurance may be able to recover pain and suffering damages. This can be challenging, which is why seeking medical treatment and following medical advice in attending treatment can be vital. This is important not only for properly treating injuries, but the extent and nature of the treatment can help support a claim that an injury was serious under the law.
Even when someone has elected limited tort insurance there are several exceptions under the law that allow a person to recover "non-economic" damages. Among these notable exceptions are:
- When the at-fault driver is operating a vehicle that is registered in another state (such as a car registered in Delaware);
- When the at-fault driver is found guilty of or accepts Accelerated Rehabilitative Disposition (ARD) for driving under the influence of alcohol or a drugs;
- When the injured person is a passenger in commercial vehicle (such as a taxi or limo);
- When the at-fault driver fails to maintain auto insurance;
- When the at-fault driver intends to injure someone.
If you have limited tort and have been injured, contact our team of Bensalem car accident lawyers today for a free consultation about your car accident. Call today at 215-914-6919 or call toll free at 866-617-0050.
How Much Time Do I Have To File A Lawsuit?
There are strict time limits to filing a lawsuit in a personal injury case in Pennsylvania. The general rule is that any personal injury action from a car accident must be filed with the court within two (2) years from the date of the accident. Any lawsuit filed beyond this two year deadline may be dismissed. This deadline is codified at 42 Pa. C.S. § 5524.
There may be additional time if the injured person is a child. Under Pennsylvania law, an unemancipated minor can file an action for personal injuries within two (2) years after reaching majority age. An unemancipated minor reaches majority age at 18 years. So under the current law as of 2020, a minor can file a lawsuit within two (2) years of his or her 18th birthday. This is codified at 42 Pa. C.S. § 5533.
At the latest, a lawsuit for an unemancipated child must be filed before his or her 20th birthday. To be safe, it is best to speak to a personal injury attorney as soon as possible to confirm the applicable deadlines that must be followed.
In addition to the two-year statute of limitations, there are also more critical deadlines for certain types of claims. If you have been injured by a government vehicle, like one owned and operated by the Township of Bensalem, then a written notice of claim must be provided to the township within six (6) months of the date of the accident. This notice requirement is different than the statute of limitations. It is a separate deadline that is required by Pennsylvania law that is a prerequisite to filing a formal lawsuit.
The Township of Bensalem, the City of Philadelphia, along with governmental agencies, and even some state-funded groups like SEPTA, have certain protections under the law. These protections are provided by the Pennsylvania Tort Claims Act. This law, 42 Pa. C.S. § 5522, requires that written notice be sent to the appropriate government or agency that caused the car accident. Again, that written notice must be sent within six (6) months from the date of the accident. It also must contain certain information about who is making the claim and details regarding the accident.
If the necessary written notice to a government entity is not provided within six (6) months, the government can later attempt to dismiss any lawsuit filed with a court. So even if you file a lawsuit within the two years required by the statute of limitations, your case may be dismissed if you did not send the required government notice within six (6) months of the accident.
Deadlines like the statute of limitations and the Tort Claims Act notice requirements are why it is incredibly important to contact an attorney immediately after an accident. Contact an experienced Bensalem car accident lawyer today to discuss your claim. The injury lawyers at Mattiacci Law will investigate your case to find out whether any notices need to be sent immediately. We can help protect your rights after an accident.
Contact our Bensalem accident lawyers today for a consultation. The initial consultation is free. Our phone number is 215-914-6919, or call toll free at 866-617-0050.
About Bensalem Township
Bensalem Township is a historic area just north of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. It is located in Bucks County. Among some of its notable sites are two places listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The first is Andalusia, the ancestral home and estate of the Biddle family. The estate is situated along the Delaware River and features a house that is one of the best examples of Greek Revival architecture in the country. The other historic home is Belmont. This house, built around 1850, is another famous example of the Greek Revival style.
Other points of interest in Bensalem include Parx Casino & Racing. Parx offers gaming, horse racing, and entertainment. Nearby is the Neshaminy Mall, a shopping center with more than 1,000,000 square feet of space. It is located off of Route 1 nearby to the Pennsylvania Turnpike.