Car owners and drivers in Pennsylvania who are covered by Limited Tort insurance are treated as if they have opted for Full Tort when recovering non-economic damages in certain situations as outlined below:
The driver who caused the accident has been convicted, or has accepted ARD for operating a vehicle while drunk or while under the influence of a controlled substance.
- The driver who caused the accident is driving a vehicle that is from out of state.
- The driver who caused the accident had the intention of injuring his or her self or some other person.
- The driver who caused the accident has not complied with auto insurance laws in Pennsylvania.
- There is a claim that is due to a manufacturing defect.
- The person injured was an occupant in a commercially operated motor vehicle.
The Supreme Court of Pennsylvania made the decision that any of the exceptions listed above are not applicable to underinsured UIM) or uninsured (UM) motor vehicle claims.
Often, drivers pay higher premiums, so as to include UM coverage. If you have the misfortune to be injured by a driver who is uninsured or by a hit and run driver, your UM/UIM cover will provide extra coverage when the UM/UIM driver does not have sufficient insurance to be able to compensate you fully for injuries you have sustained.
Consider the situation in which you take out the Limited Tort option and you also have $100,000 for UM coverage. You have an accident with an uninsured driver who was eventually convicted of Driving Under the Influence (DUI). Even though this is proved that it was the cause of the accident, you may not be eligible to recover any damages for any injuries, even if you made a payment for UM benefits. The reason for this is that, although the DUI exception is allowed for Limited Tort Coverage, it is not applicable to any UM claims.
You should seek the advice of a tort lawyer before you fall foul of the vagaries of the Limited Tort auto accident insurance options. If you do not take out the most suitable options then a lawyer will have difficulty arguing on your behalf if you are injured in an accident that was not your fault. The fact is that the Limited Tort option may not be a money saver, if you have an unusual accident situation such as with an UM/UIM driver and you may lose out on much needed cash if your injury takes a long time to heal.
If you have been injured in a car accident that involved a UM/UIM driver then you should make an appointment for a free consultation at our law offices here in Pennsylvania. We not only know our own legal system well but we know instantly whether any client of ours has grounds for a just compensation claim. It doesnt matter if you had the Limited Tort or Full Tort insurance option we know how to argue effectively on your behalf and pursue the claim you rightfully deserve.