Aug 18

Legal Options following Sideswipe Auto Accidents

Sideswipe Auto Accidents - Scranton

Posted on August 18, 2015 — by Tom Foley III

View from the side of a carWhen you think about bad car crashes, you most likely picture rear-end or head-on collisions. However, sideswipe auto accidents can have devastating effects. There is little to protect you in the event of a side impact crash. Therefore, along with damage to your vehicle, you may sustain serious or even life-threatening injuries. If you or a loved one has been involved in a sideswipe collision, the attorneys at Foley Law Firm are ready to assist you. Here in Pennsylvania, we have a unique “choice no-fault” system of auto insurance. These policies can make the aftermath of a car accident much more difficult to navigate. Our attorneys will investigate your case to determine who was at fault, and we will help you decide whether a lawsuit is in your best interests. If it will truly benefit you, we will fight aggressively to obtain the compensation you deserve. To learn more about sideswipe auto accidents, contact our Scranton practice today.

What Is a Sideswipe Accident?

A sideswipe accident occurs when one driver drifts into the adjacent lane, striking another vehicle from the side. Unlike the front and rear ends of a car, the side of a vehicle does little to protect drivers and passengers. Thus, the victims of a sideswipe accident may face a high risk for severe injury. This damage could include head trauma, traumatic brain injury, broken bones, lacerations, whiplash, and more. Additionally, the force of a sideswipe collision can push the impacted car into a roadside barrier or another vehicle. These circumstances will significantly increase the risk of severe injury.

Who Is at Fault for a Side Collision?

The driver who moves out of his or her lane is clearly at fault for a sideswipe accident. There are several reasons that such crashes could occur:

  • A careless driver makes a lane change without checking his or her blind spot
  • A driver is distracted, texting, talking on the phone, or engaged in another activity behind the wheel
  • A driver is intoxicated
  • A driver overreacts to a road hazard, veering into the next lane
  • A fatigued driver nods off behind the wheel

Pennsylvania’s Unique Insurance Laws

Our distinctive “choice no-fault” car insurance rules can make car accidents very complex. In Pennsylvania, you have two choices when you are buying car insurance.

  • At-fault Insurance or Limited Tort: You can collect money from your insurance company for personal injuries, even if you were fully or partially at fault for an accident. However, you cannot sue the other driver unless you sustained very serious injuries. (Only injuries that inhibit one of your bodily functions or cause permanent disfigurement will qualify.)
  • No-fault Insurance or Full Tort:  No-fault insurance gives you more options. You can sue the negligent driver, even if your injuries do not qualify as “serious” under Pennsylvania law. For example, you may have sustained a grave, though temporary injury, that put you out of work for some time. With no-fault insurance, you can sue to recover your lost wages. However, it is important to note that you can also be sued if you are partially at fault for an accident.

How Foley Law Firm Can Help

You already opted for at-fault or no-fault insurance when you purchased your policy. Our attorneys will evaluate your insurance plan and the severity of your injuries to determine whether you are legally eligible to sue. If we conclude that a lawsuit is a viable option, we will examine every aspect of your case. We will interview witnesses, police on the scene, and medical experts. Then will fight tirelessly in or out of court to obtain the compensation you deserve. 

Contact Us for a Case Evaluation

To learn more about your options following a sideswipe auto accident, contact Foley Law Firm today.

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