A: Limited Tort is one of two alternatives you must choose from when buying Pennsylvania car insurance. The other option is Full Tort.
If you choose Limited Tort, you will save a few dollars on your car insurance premium but you will give up rights and so will your family members. Specifically, you and your family members will not be permitted to recover pain and suffering for most injuries. If you've never been injured in a car accident, you may not realize how significant the pain and suffering can be. Car crash injuries can be disabling and can last for weeks, months or years.
If you choose Full Tort, you and your family will retain all of your rights under Pennsylvania law.
There are exceptions to the restrictions that you and your family will face if you select limited tort, but they are narrow and strictly construed by the courts. Moreover, insurance companies won't hesitate to mislead you when you're chosen limited tort. They'll tell you that your case doesn't qualify under the exceptions, even if it does. See, for example, our stories on limited tort, including:
- the policeman who was injured in a car accident and suffered chronic shoulder injuries but wasn't permitted to recover because he'd chosen limited tort;
- a real life Q & A about the limited tort threshold;
- an insurance company who intentionally misled their own insured about her limited tort status.
The Bottom Line
The bottom line is that limited tort is a gamble in which the odds are stacked against you. Why take a chance that you'll have permanent or chronic pain that limits your ability to move and that you'll be denied the chance to recover any compensation? If you are contemplating a new auto insurance policy, or if you have an existing policy on which you've elected the limited tort option, make sure you notify your agent that you want Full Tort rights.
Contact an Experienced Pennsylvania Injury Lawyer
If you've been hurt in a Pennsylvania car accident, we can help. Call us today for a free consultation with one of our helpful Erie injury lawyers. Call 814-580-5017 or toll free 877-505-9548.