NJ and PA Car Accident Attorney Who Gets Results for Area Drivers
On an average day in Pennsylvania, there are 351 car accidents that are significant enough to report to the police — which is the equivalent of approximately 15 crashes per hour. Every day in Pennsylvania, 3 people are fatally killed in car crashes, and 221 people are injured.
Philadelphia is the most populated county in Pennsylvania — and it also has one of the highest levels of traffic crashes. It is second only to Allegheny County (Pittsburgh) for reportable traffic crashes, with 8.7% of all car accidents happening in Philadelphia in 2017. However, the most traffic-related fatalities that year occurred in Philadelphia (8.3%).
The numbers are similar in New Jersey. In 2017, there were 270,231 car accidents in the state. This includes 11,579 accidents in Burlington County, 14,886 in Camden County, 10,329 in Mercer County, and 2,650 in Cape May County.
These statistics demonstrate that car accidents are exceptionally common — and can have devastating results. For those who have been injured in a car accident, there is help. Victims of car accidents in both Pennsylvania and New Jersey may be eligible for compensation for their losses, including medical expenses, property damage, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages.
Types of Car Accidents
Rear-end collisions can lead to devastating injuries, particularly to the head and neck. These cases may seem straightforward, but may require a deeper investigation to determine liability. Working with a seasoned car accident lawyer can help you get the compensation that you deserve.
In Pennsylvania, nearly half of all crashes — 38.4% — happen at intersections. These types of accidents can be particularly dangerous, leaving occupants exposed in a T-bone style wreck. Exercising care and caution is particularly important to avoid dangerous intersection collisions.
Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Cases
If you are in a collision with a driver who lacks insurance or does not have sufficient insurance to cover your losses, your own insurance policy may cover your damages. An uninsured/underinsured (UI/UM) motorist policy can help ensure that you recover for your injuries — even if the other driver cannot be found or lacks the insurance to pay for your damages.
In 2017, there were 7,367 accidents involving commercial trucks in Pennsylvania. These crashes may be caused by improperly maintained vehicles, distracted drivers, or truckers who drive beyond what is safe in order to meet goals set by their employers. If you have been injured in a truck accident, you will need an attorney who will fight for your right to compensation.
When you get into a taxi, Uber or Lyft, you are trusting that the driver is going to operate the car safely. If he or she doesn’t — or if the driver of a taxi or ride share vehicle hits your car — then recovering for your losses can be complicated. In this situation, you will need an attorney who understands the law and how to fight the insurance companies to help you recover.
Whenever a motorcycle crashes, the potential for a serious or even fatal injury is high. This is particularly true when a bike collides with a passenger or commercial vehicle. If you have been hurt in a motorcycle accident, you may be entitled to compensation for your physical injuries, time off work, pain and suffering, and other expenses.
Although pedestrians should be safe walking on our sidewalks and crossing the road, they are too often hit by speeding vehicles and distracted drivers. These types of accidents have the potential to cause incredibly serious injuries, or even death. A skilled car accident lawyer can work with you to ensure that you get the compensation that you deserve for your losses after a pedestrian accident.
Determining Fault in a Philadelphia Car Accident Case
Determining who is at fault after a car accident is critical, as a person may only be held responsible for damages caused by an accident if that driver was negligent. Negligence is something that your attorney must prove in order to successfully bring a case against the other driver (the defendant).
Negligence means that a person failed to exercise reasonable care. For example, a driver who slammed into the back of your vehicle may be found negligent in that rear-end collision because he failed to stop his or her car before hitting your vehicle. Another example of negligent driving involves texting and driving. If a driver was texting instead of paying attention to the road and runs a red light, striking another car, they would likely be found negligent (especially because texting and driving is illegal in both New Jersey and Pennsylvania).
Sometimes fault is very clear, such as in these examples. However, there are cases when determining who was negligent can be more complicated. This can happen in multi-car collisions or when there is a dispute as to what happened. In those situations, there are additional investigative steps that can be taken to help determine how the accident occurred and whether someone was negligent.
The Investigation Process
It is important to start investigating the facts of a motor vehicle accident as quickly as possible after it occurred. Our firm begins an investigation immediately. This often involves taking photographs of both the vehicle and the scene of the incident, obtaining the property damage information, getting the police report, tracking down witnesses and getting statements. In some cases, it may require hiring an accident reconstruction expert or a biomechanical engineer.
Some vehicles are also equipped with an event data recorder. An event data recorder records vehicle information in the seconds before, during, and after a collision. This can include the speed of the vehicle and how that speed changed during the collision, the number and location of occupants in the car, whether seat belts were in use, whether airbags activated, and whether and when the brakes were used. This information can be downloaded after a collision and used by experts to help piece together how a collision occurred.
This type of investigation can be costly, but it is necessary to ensure that a case is properly prepared. Our Philadelphia car accident firm fronts the costs associated with the investigation. Our clients never have to pay money out of pocket, and they pay no retainer. Our firm is only reimbursed for our costs if we recover money in the case.
Putting a Value on a Car Accident Case
The value of a case depends on many factors. These factors include:
- The severity of the injuries sustained in the accident;
- The permanency of the injuries sustained in the accident;
- Whether surgery was or is necessary;
- Whether there is scarring and/or disfigurement from the accident;
- The amount of medical bills paid and that are still owed;
- The amount of future medical bills that are needed for future treatment;
- The amount of wages or income lost by the injured person;
- How the injuries have affected the injured person’s life; and
- How the injuries have affected the spouse of an injured person (also known as a loss of consortium claim).
Some accidents result in very serious injuries that result in death, brain damage, or severe injuries requiring surgery. In such situations, the value of a case may be more apparent from the outset. However, there are times when it is necessary to allow a client treatment for a period of time before an estimate of the potential case value can be determined.
In addition to these factors, we also have to determine whether we can also show that the opposing driver was at fault and was negligent. A strong negligence argument helps the value of a case. A difficult or weak negligence argument may reduce the value of a case. However, every case is different and depends on its own facts.
Our Philadelphia car accident firm investigates each of these factors to help maximize the value of each of our cases. We review the injuries and obtain all of the medical records and diagnostic tests. We hire experts or physicians to examine our clients and give opinions on their injuries. These reports also detail whether our clients suffered permanent injuries and if so, what treatment and bills will be needed in the future.
We may also involve other experts to help build the damages in our cases. These include vocational experts who can test our clients to see what work they may able to do after being injured. We also use economists who calculate the amount of money a client has lost and will continue to lose in the future due to his or her injuries. All of these things help determine the value of a case.
How Insurance Polices Impact Recovery in Pennsylvania
Many people do not know the difference between limited tort and full tort auto insurance. However, the type of insurance you have can play a large role in whether you can be compensated for all of your injuries and damages.
In Pennsylvania, limited tort insurance generally costs less than full tort insurance. In exchange for slightly cheaper insurance premiums, a person who elects limited tort insurance gives up their ability to sue for pain and suffering damages. A person who has chosen limited tort insurance may still recover pain and suffering damages if they suffer a serious injury. In contrast, full tort insurance does not limit a person’s ability to recover pain and suffering damages due to an auto accident.
There are several exceptions that may apply to overcome the limited tort limitations. Every case is different, which is why it is important to work with a seasoned lawyer who understands the nuances of Pennsylvania law.
A Track Record of Success
At Mattiacci Law, we represent victims who have suffered personal injuries, including people who were hurt in car accidents. The following are just a sample of the amounts we have recovered on behalf of our clients in car accident cases:
- $900,000 – truck driver injured in collision in Philadelphia, PA
- $395,000 – trucking accident on North Broad Street in Philadelphia, PA
- $285,000 – sideswipe collision in Burlington County, NJ
- $240,000 – Philadelphia pedestrian hit by passing pickup
- $200,000 – Airport shuttle collision
- $250,000 – Side impact car accident in Philadelphia, PA
- $115,000 – red light accident involving a taxi cab collision in Philadelphia, PA
We take all cases on a contingency fee basis, which means that we never charge a fee unless we recover money in your case.
Work with an Experienced Philadelphia Car Accident Attorney
The aftermath of a car accident can be both stressful and overwhelming. Working with an experienced Philadelphia car accident attorney can help to ease that burden. Your lawyer can take on the challenges of dealing with insurance companies, reviewing paperwork, and examining your insurance police to check for potential benefits.
For more than 17 years, attorney John Mattiacci has represented clients injured in a range of personal injury cases, including motor vehicle accidents. He is dedicated to helping victims get what they need when they are hurt in a car accident, from making sure that their medical bills are paid to ensuring that the damage to their vehicles is repaired, to determining if there is coverage to pay for lost time for work.
Mattiacci Law represents clients in Pennsylvania and New Jersey who have been injured in car accidents and other types of personal injury claims. We offer free initial consultations, and never charge a fee unless we recover money in your case. To learn more or to schedule an appointment, contact our firm today at 855-295-3902 (Philadelphia office) or 855-659-6976 (New Jersey office), or reach out online anytime.