In the summer, more people are outside enjoying the nice weather. There are more people walking, more people running and more people riding their bikes. Unfortunately, there are also more car accidents involving pedestrians, joggers and bikers.
Oftentimes, pedestrians, joggers and bikers sustain more serious injuries than drivers and passengers in car accidents. This is due to the simple fact that pedestrians, joggers and bikers are hit directly by the cars. Unlike drivers and passengers, pedestrians/bikers are not inside a vehicle, which can absorb most of the impact. Their bodies come in direct contact with the car, and many suffer serious injuries. Examples of serious injuries include concussions, head injuries, permanent brain injuries, catastrophic orthopedic injuries such as broken legs, arms, etc. The most serious injury resulting from pedestrian/biker and car accidents is death.
Legal Rights of Injured Pedestrians, Joggers and Bikers
Who Pays for the Medical Bills in a Car Accident in Philadelphia?
Injured pedestrians, joggers and riders have legal rights against at-fault drivers. A common concern for injured pedestrians/riders is, who pays for their medical bills? Most assume that the at-fault driver pays for the medical bills. This is partially true, if the at-fault driver is successfully sued in a car accident lawsuit. However, before a lawsuit gets filed, there’s a special type of car insurance coverage that kicks in to pay for medical bills. In the example below, we’ll explain this complex law, known as PIP coverage.
For instance, an individual works in Philadelphia and decides to take a walk during his lunch break. As he is crossing the street, he is hit by a car. The driver of the car was texting while driving and didn’t not see the light had turned red.
Pedestrian is Covered by Own Car Insurance Policy
The pedestrian owns an insured vehicle. In this situation, the pedestrian’s medical bills would be covered by his own car insurance under the PIP medical coverage even though he did not cause the accident. This is due to Pennsylvania’s no fault law, i.e., regardless of who caused the accident, the injured pedestrian’s own insurance company is responsible for the medical bills, up to the amount purchased. The minimum amount of PIP coverage required by Pennsylvania car accident/insurance law is $5,000. If the PIP limit is exhausted, then the injured pedestrian’s health insurance would come into play.
Pedestrian is Covered by Applicable Car Insurance Policy
Let’s assume the pedestrian does not own a vehicle and lives at home with his parents. His parents own vehicles and he drives his parents’ cars when needed. The pedestrian is covered by his parents’ auto insurance policy as a member of the household. Because he is covered by his parents’ insurance policy, the medical bills resulting from the car pedestrian accident are covered by his parents’ insurance company. Again, if the PIP limit is exhausted, the next level of coverage would be his health insurance.
Pedestrian is Not Covered by Any Car Insurance Policy
If the pedestrian in the example above doesn’t own a car or isn’t covered under someone else’s auto policy, the at-fault driver’s PIP coverage would apply, up to the amount purchased by the at-fault driver. If the PIP coverage is exhausted, then the pedestrian’s health insurance would pay for the medical bills.
It is important to note that the pedestrian accident example discussed above would also apply to medical bills for bike riders or joggers who’re injured in car accidents.
What Types of Damages Can Pedestrians, Joggers and Bikers Recover After a Car Accident?
There are different types of financial compensation injured pedestrians, joggers and riders may receive as a result of a Philadelphia car accident lawsuit. They are as follows:
- medical expenses,
- lost wages,
- out of pocket expenses, and
- pain and suffering.
Examples of medical expenses are health insurance co-pays, deductible, etc., after PIP is exhausted. Lost wages include time lost from work as a result of the car accident and future lost wages. Other out of pocket expenses are expenses incurred as a result of the accident. For instance, a pedestrian breaks his leg from the car accident and cannot mow his lawn for 2 months. As a result, he has to hire a landscaper to mow his lawn every week. The cost for the landscaper would be a type of out of pocket expense. Pain and suffering damages are based on how an injured individual’s daily life is affected as a result of the accident.
Help After a Philadelphia Car Accident
If you were injured in a car accident in Philadelphia or other parts of Pennsylvania, call Jordan Namerow to schedule a FREE consultation. 215.985.0777