Published On: Fri, Feb 24th, 2017

Pennsylvania’s limited tort option: What you need to know

For many years, drivers in the state of Pennsylvania have had two choices when it comes to automobile insurance coverage packages: Full tort and limited tort insurance.

Under the Pennsylvania Motor Vehicle Financial Responsibility Law, which became law in the state in 1990, granted drivers and motor vehicle owners this choice, and it’s an important distinction. Although limited tort insurance coverage packages are typically moderately cheaper than full tort insurance, price is not the important discerning factor between the two. The choice you make will potentially have significant consequences should you be injured in a car accident because of the negligence of another person. If you are a driver in Pennsylvania, you should understand your insurance options so you can make an informed decision. In virtually all cases, drivers will be better off choosing the full tort insurance option rather than the limited tort option, even though the former costs more money. Read on to find out why.

photo supplied, courtesy of guest blogging network

Whether you choose limited tort or full tort insurance coverage, Pennsylvania law requires all vehicle owners and drivers to have liability insurance coverage. The purpose of liability insurance is to protect and cover a driver who causes a motor vehicle accident – the personal who is liable for the accident. State law also requires that vehicle owners purchase and maintain at least $5,000 in first party medical benefits, which will go towards covering your medical bills related to an injury sustained in a car accident. Your financial recovery for injuries and losses you might sustain in a car accident can be dramatically impacted by whether you have selected full tort insurance or limited tort insurance.

A Pennsylvania motor vehicle owner decides whether to purchase full tort insurance or limited tort insurance. Under PA limited tort law, he or she will be bound by the terms of that insurance contract until a new contract becomes effective, at which time the selection of insurance coverage can be changed. It is important to note that if you own a motor vehicle registered in the state of Pennsylvania but do not have insurance, you will be treated as though you had selected the limited tort insurance option should you be in an accident. What does that mean? Essentially, that means that you may be blocked from seeking financial recovery for any injuries you sustain at the hands of a negligent driver.

What’s more, your decision to select full tort or limited tort insurance can potentially affect more than just you, the driver. That decision can also impact other relatives who reside with you. Known as “resident relatives,” these people will be bound by that decision, under the following circumstances:

If they do not own a motor vehicle in their own name and if they are not insured on their own insurance policy, if they reside with the insured person and if they are related to that person.

Examples of resident relatives include: children (biological or stepchildren), spouse, siblings, grandparents, and stepparents, among others.

Check out sites such as gosimon.com/limited-tort.html for more information on the limited tort option.

Author: Huzaifa

On the DISPATCH: Headlines  Local  Opinion

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