Pennsylvania Car Accident Law - Limited Tort
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Understanding Pain and Suffering
Pain and suffering is the legal term for any physical or emotional stress caused by an injury. For example, if you break your arm in a car accident and it does not heal correctly and end up with a constant ache in your shoulder, the ache is considered pain and suffering. If glass scratches your face during a car accident, leaving you with a noticeable scar on your face and feelings of embarrassment, your emotions are considered pain and suffering. Pain and suffering even covers situations such as when you and your spouse are in an accident and your spouse suffers an injury that changes their personality and makes it difficult for them to provide you with companionship. This is referred to as loss of consortium.
Limited Tort Limitations and Exceptions
Generally, when you are in a car accident you can be compensated for doctor’s bills, lost wages, and other out-of-pocket expenses due to your injury. But if you select limited tort as part of your insurance coverage, you cannot request that your insurance company pay you for the emotional aspects or the residual physical effects of your injuries. Limited tort also prevents you from seeking compensation for pain and suffering when you are injured as a passenger in someone else’s car or as a pedestrian.
There are some exceptions to limited tort. For instance, if you can prove that your injuries are severe, you may be able to recover money for pain and suffering even though you only have limited tort coverage. However, it can be extremely difficult to show that your injuries are severe enough to overcome limited tort, as there is no standard legal definition of severe injury and the definition used by Pennsylvania courts is vague.
Benefits of Limited Tort and Full Tort
So why do many
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