Despite laws against texting while driving in Pennsylvania, many people still choose to use their phones behind the wheel. Unfortunately, this irresponsible behavior is a leading cause of traffic accidents, many of which lead to devastating consequences that standard car insurance coverage is simply not designed to fully make up for.
Fortunately, texting-while-driving car accidents in Erie that result in serious injuries can serve as grounds for civil lawsuits. Through a successful claim, you may be able to recover substantial financial restitution for every form of harm you experienced as a result of the crash. If you were hurt in a wreck caused by a texting driver, reach out to a seasoned car accident attorney who can help you achieve the best possible case result.
When Can Someone Sue Over a Texting and Driving Wreck?
State law prohibits the act of using an “interactive wireless communications device” to read, write, or send text messages while operating a moving vehicle. As such, texting and driving qualifies as a “breach” of all drivers’ duty to act lawfully and responsibly on the road at all times. Someone who is texting while driving and ends up getting into a car accident in Erie would likely be found “negligent” based on their “breach of duty.” A resourceful attorney can gather evidence that proves a motorist was texting behind the wheel at the time of the accident and should be responsible for compensating ensuing losses.
Importantly, Pennsylvania’s car insurance laws do not allow for unlimited financial recovery. Injured individuals must pursue compensation through “limited tort” coverage unless they suffered a “serious injury” as defined in their carrier’s specific policy. Guidance from a skilled legal professional can still be key to maximizing compensation through an insurance claim, as well as to exploring every possible avenue for securing fair financial recovery.
Potential Obstacles to Effective Civil Recovery
In Erie, someone having legal standing to file a lawsuit over a texting-while-driving auto accident does not mean the other involved motorist is automatically 100 percent at fault for the crash. 42 Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes § 7102 allows a court to reduce the injured person’s final damage award in proportion to their assigned percentage of “comparative fault.” For example, a court may assign an injured motorist a percentage of fault for going over the speed limit or failing to yield.
Furthermore, 42 P.S.A. § 5524 gives most people who experience personal injuries through another person’s negligence just two years after the initial incident to file suit. Failing to meet this legal deadline will almost result in being “time-barred” from ever recovering any civil compensation for that particular injury. A knowledgeable accident lawyer’s help can be absolutely vital to navigating effectively around these and other possible roadblocks during the civil recovery process.
An Erie Attorney Can Help With a Texting While Driving Car Accident Case
Texting behind the wheel puts not only the texter but everyone else on the road with them at risk of catastrophic harm. Needless to say, someone who hurts someone else by making this reckless choice should be held accountable for the repercussions. As any seasoned legal professional can tell you, securing fair restitution can be much harder in practice than you might expect.
Assistance from a capable lawyer will almost certainly improve your chances of getting the compensation you deserve following a texting-while-driving car accident in Erie. Call Lowenthal & Abrams, Injury Attorneys, today to schedule a consultation.