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Is Pennsylvania a no-fault car insurance state?

Here's what you need to know...
  • Pennsylvania is a choice no-fault state
  • Drivers in Pennsylvania are required to carry Bodily Injury Liability, Property Damage Protection, and Medical Coverage (or PIP)
  • There are several things you can do to lower your auto insurance rates in Pennsylvania

If you have no-fault auto insurance, your policy allows you to seek reimbursement or recovery for your financial losses no matter who was at fault for your accident or damages.

If you live in a no-fault state, the laws of your state have put into place first-party benefits and have placed restrictions on suing, known as limited tort. Personal injury protection is the portion of your auto policy that allows you as the policyholder — or first-party — to claim benefits no matter who is at fault for the accident.

On the other hand, a tort auto insurance system insists that the driver at fault pay for the damages to the other party including their medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Tort insurance is the most common form of auto insurance in the United States with 38 states being tort states.

Victims in a no-fault state may only sue for injuries that are severe.

If you want to sue for pain and suffering, you must meet certain requirements which are known as a threshold. With the restrictions placed on litigation, these systems can help legal systems not be bogged down and can reduce overall costs.

The threshold is either descriptive or in dollar amounts. The costs can include minimum days of disability after an accident or even permanent disability. If you live in a tort state, there are no restrictions placed on your right to sue.

If you need to make sure you are fully covered in Pennsylvania, start comparing auto insurance rates by entering your ZIP code above!

Is Pennsylvania a no-fault state?

Twelve states plus Washington D. C. are no-fault states.

Pennsylvania is one of them; however, Pennsylvania is considered to be a choice no-fault state as it allows drivers to choose whether they want no-fault coverage or traditional coverage.

If you select traditional coverage, you do not give up any of your rights to sue after a car accident. The downside is that you also open yourself up to being sued without any restrictions.

If you decide to purchase no-fault coverage, another driver can still file a liability claim or even a lawsuit.

Although under Pennsylvania state law, they must have had a serious injury. By law, this means more than a soft-tissue injury and does not usually include a head injury unless it is severe.

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A serious injury in the eyes of Pennsylvania no-fault laws means there must be serious impairment of a body function or permanent and serious disfigurement. Drivers should remember that no-fault stipulations only apply to personal injuries.

If you have property damage as a direct result of your auto accident, you can still pursue the at-fault driver to financially recover your losses.

Pennsylvania drivers must carry these mandatory types of coverage:

  • Bodily Injury Liability
  • Property Damage Protection
  • Medical Coverage (PIP)

Who pays in a car accident?

If you elect to have no-fault coverage in Pennsylvania, you will file a first-party claim with your auto insurance under your personal injury protection for any physical damages you have.

If you have property damage, you may either file under your collision coverage or the other party’s property damage liability, depending on the circumstances. You may not sue unless your injuries fall under the stipulations of the law.

If you choose traditional auto insurance coverage, you retain your right to sue under any circumstances, and you can also be sued by drivers who have elected the same coverage.

If you are the at-fault party, you will need to file claims under your insurance policy, as will the party who has suffered damages.

Auto Insurance in Pennsylvania

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Like nearly every other state in the nation, Pennsylvania has minimum insurance requirements by law.

These are set in place to protect all drivers. It is important to note that these are just minimum requirements and in many cases, you may want to purchase coverages in higher limits.

The minimum requirements for auto insurance in Pennsylvania are as follows:

  • Bodily Injury Liability per person – $15,000; this coverage pays for the medical bills and lost wages of a party who was injured but not at fault for the accident.
  • Bodily Injury Liability per accident – $30,000; this is the maximum amount that your insurance must pay out no matter how many parties were injured in an accident you caused.
  • Property Damage Liability – $5,000; this coverage pays for damages you cause to other people’s property, most likely their vehicle.
  • Medical (PIP) Coverage – $5,000; PIP pays for your medical bills and lost wages in an accident. Sometimes it may also cover any hired help around the house after the accident such as housekeeping or childcare.

An optional coverage for Pennsylvania drivers to consider is that of uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage.

If you are the victim of a hit and run accident or are in an accident with another driver who does not have insurance or does not have enough coverage, your policy will pick up the tab.

Finding the Best Car Insurance Coverage in Pennsylvania

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No matter if you choose no-fault insurance or a traditional auto insurance policy in the state of Pennsylvania, you likely still want to pay competitive rates.

There are several steps you can take to ensure that you are paying the best rates you possibly can for your auto insurance premium such as:

– Comparing Rates

In order to find the best rates for you and your driving and financial situation, it is important to compare car insurance rates from a variety of different auto insurance carriers.

The easiest way to do this is to use an online price comparison tool.

These tools allow you to compare the auto insurance carriers, policies, and premiums of several different companies all on one platform.

– Ask About Available Discounts

Most auto insurance companies have a plethora of various discounts available to their drivers. In many cases, you must ask in order to receive them.

Be aware of the following discounts plus many others:

  • Good Driver/Accident-Free – You may be able to save as much as 5 percent if you have not had any accidents that cost your insurer money within the past three years.
  • Affiliation – You may save up to 25 percent if you belong to certain clubs, teams, or are affiliated with particular schools or employers.
  • Safety Equipment – If your car has safety equipment such as anti-lock brakes or anti-theft devices you might be able to get a discount of five to 20 percent.
  • Multi-Policy – If you purchase your auto insurance from the same companies you have other insurance policies with, such as life or homeowners, you can get a discount of up to five to 10 percent.
  • Green Car – If you drive a car that is eco-friendly or a hybrid, it may save you as much as 10 percent on your auto insurance premium.

Before letting your auto insurance policy auto-renew, be sure to shop around for rates. You may find that you can get a lower premium with another company instead.

Start comparison shopping today for better auto insurance rates by entering your ZIP code below!

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