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Pittsburgh Car Accident Attorneys

Auto accidents range from routine insurance claims to multi-vehicle collisions with catastrophic injuries and fatalities. At Dallas W. Hartman P.C., we’re prepared for it all. We help Pittsburgh car accident victims recover from their medical bills, property damage, pain and suffering, lost wages, and other damages. Car accidents happen in an instant and can change your life forever. Contact our experienced Pittsburgh car accident lawyers about your case today.

Pennsylvania Car Accident Resources

How to Choose a Car Accident Lawyer in Pittsburgh

Choosing the right car accident attorney can mean the difference between full and fair compensation for your injuries and no compensation at all. Make sure to hire someone with a track record of success helping injured victims in car accident cases. Your lawyer should be capable of going up against insurance companies, other drivers, major corporations, and others on your behalf, to fight for the compensation your injuries deserve. If you or a loved one has been injured in a crash our car accident lawyers at our personal injury law firm can help you recover financial compensation for your injuries. Talk to our Pittsburgh personal injury lawyer team at Dallas W. Hartman, P.C. Insurance companies and defense attorneys know that we are not afraid to take our cases to trial. We have been helping the injured people of PA and OH for over twenty-five years, and our results speak for themselves.

Do I Have a Car Accident Case?

Not all car accidents in Pittsburgh require attorneys or involve lawsuits being filed. However, you may have grounds to file a claim against another driver or bring a car accident lawsuit in Pittsburgh under certain circumstances. Having a valid car accident claim depends on many factors such as:

  • Evidence of the accident and the accident damages
  • The severity of your injuries
  • Who was at fault
  • The time needed for surgery and/or time away from the job
  • Insurance coverage

The best way to find out if you have a case is to consult with our Pittsburgh car accident lawyers within two years, as per Pennsylvania’s statute of limitations. Be sure to take a bit of time to gather as much strong evidence, documentation and information as you possibly can.

Contact the Pittsburgh car accident attorneys at Dallas W. Hartman P.C. for a free case evaluation.

What Should I Do After A Car Accident in Pittsburgh?

After suffering an injury in a car accident, you will be faced with many decisions about your medical care and compensation for lost earnings and pain and suffering. Don’t talk to an insurance representative until you have the opportunity to understand your rights.

A car insurance company will not want what is best for you and may try to take advantage of you if you aren’t prepared. 

Before you talk to a claims adjuster, take these steps:

  • Pull over and call 911. Never flee the scene of a car accident in Pennsylvania. You are legally obligated to pull over and report a serious crash to the police.
  • Check for injuries. Check yourself and anyone else involved in the accident for injuries. If anyone is injured, bleeding or unconscious, notify the police.
  • Do not admit fault. Even if you think you might have contributed to the crash, do not admit fault or apologize. Wait for an investigation to determine the cause of the crash.
  • Exchange information. Talk to the other driver involved to get his or her name, address, insurance information and vehicle information.
  • Take pictures. While you are still at the scene of the accident, use your cell phone to take photos and record video footage.
  • Speak to eyewitnesses. Talk to anyone who saw the crash take place. Get their names and contact information to collect statements later.
  • Get medical treatment. As soon as you leave the scene of the accident, go to a hospital in Pittsburgh for professional medical care.
  • Be careful when talking to insurance claims adjusters. Do not agree to give them a recorded statement or sign anything sent to you from the insurer until you’ve contacted an attorney.
  • Talk to an experienced car accident lawyer. Contact a car accident attorney in Pittsburgh to help you preserve your rights and seek fair financial compensation for your car accident case.

If a loved one has lost their life after a tragic car accident, get legal support from our compassionate wrongful death lawyers in Pittsburgh. Our law firm offers a free consultation to assess the circumstances of your case. We will explain your options and help you understand the process of recovering compensation. If you retain our Pittsburgh car accident attorneys as your legal counsel, you will have an experienced, knowledgeable team on your side, handling everything and fighting for maximum money damages.

Is Pennsylvania a No-Fault State? 

Yes. Pennsylvania is one of only 12 states in the country that abide by no-fault insurance laws. Under this system, anyone involved in a car accident must seek compensation from his or her own auto insurance company, regardless of fault. This means you will turn to your own insurance policy for coverage, in most cases.

All drivers in Pennsylvania must carry personal injury protection (PIP) insurance. This will pay for your medical bills after a crash, regardless of fault. Drivers have the option, however, to purchase limited tort or full tort coverage. Limited tort means you cannot hold the other driver responsible for your crash unless your injuries meet a certain threshold. Full tort insurance, on the other hand, allows you to opt-out of the no-fault system.

With limited tort insurance, your injuries must be severe to hold the other driver accountable. You must have suffered a catastrophic injury or serious impairment of a bodily function, such as:

With full tort insurance, you do not have to meet an injury threshold to hold the other driver accountable.

Dealing with Insurance Companies

Think the insurance company is on your side? In spite of what some may advertise, they’re actually not. They are interested in limiting the amount of your financial recovery. The insurance agents or representatives will make the process as difficult as possible. Since Pennsylvania is a no-fault state, it’s difficult to receive coverage from the other driver’s insurer. Our personal injury lawyers in Pittsburgh are very experienced in negotiating with insurance companies, and the insurance adjusters know it. We have handled hundreds of cases involving car accidents and are committed to achieving the best possible recovery for every client.

pittsburgh car accident attorney

Recovering Compensation for Your Car Accident Injuries

Common injuries that result from car accidents include whiplash, bone fractures and breaks, dislocations, neck and spinal cord injuries, herniated disks, disfigurement, brain injuries, and even wrongful death. If you or a loved one has been injured, you need to recover as fully as possible. Our experienced car accident attorneys can help you with all of your legal needs so you can concentrate on healing. Dallas W. Hartman and his team of experienced Pittsburgh accident attorneys can walk you through where to receive medical care, how to file a claim with your insurance company or a third-party insurer, and how to fight for just and fair compensation for your damages.

Our firm has the big company resources to see you through even the most complex claims, along with small-firm personalized attention. We can make you feel immediately calmer and more confident after a disastrous wreck. From our offices in New Castle, Hermitage, Butler and Erie, PA, we represent clients in communities throughout the Greater Northern Pittsburgh metro region and throughout Pennsylvania. If you cannot come to our office, we are happy to come to your home or hospital to discuss your case.

What is Negligence in Car Accidents?

Fault or negligence issues can be complicated, and an experienced Pittsburgh personal injury attorney will look to a number of sources, such as police reports, state traffic laws, and witnesses, to help you determine who was at fault for your accident. Causes of accidents where another driver may be at fault include aggressive or reckless driving, speeding, failure to obey traffic laws, and weather conditions. A person who negligently operates a vehicle may be required to pay for any damages, either to a person or property, caused by his or her negligence. Generally, people who operate automobiles must exercise “reasonable care under the circumstances.” A failure to use reasonable care is considered negligence.

The injured party, known as the plaintiff in a personal injury case, is required to prove that the defendant was negligent, that the negligence was a proximate cause of the accident, and that the accident caused the plaintiff’s injuries. If you have been involved in an accident, it is important that you seek legal counsel from an experienced accident lawyer in Pennsylvania.

Pennsylvania 2019 Car Crash Statistics

The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation publishes a report each year containing the most recent motor vehicle accident data for the state. PennDOT and the public can use this information to gain a better understanding of why car wrecks occur and how to prevent them in the future. At Dallas W. Hartman P.C., we know a car crash is much more personal than figures in a graph. However, we also know that tracking crash data is one of the best ways to spread awareness and reduce the number of accidents.

Here’s the latest data:

  • There were 125,267 reported traffic accidents in PA in 2019. This is a decrease from 128,420 total accidents in Pennsylvania in 2018. The number of accidents in PA in the last decade has fluctuated between a low of 121,242 in 2009 to a high of 130,675 in 2007.
  • In 2019, 1,059 people died in motor vehicle crashes in the state. This was a slight decrease from 1,190 deaths in 2018. Looking at the graph, one can track an overall decrease in the number of auto accident deaths from 2006 to today. While year-to-year fluctuations have occurred, the general trend has gone downward.
  • The most common type of crash in PA was a vehicle hitting a fixed object, more specifically, trees or hedges. This was also the cause of most crash fatalities in 2019. The second most common types were utility poles, followed by parked vehicles and guard rail collisions.
  • Nationally, around 85-90% of all traffic accidents involve driver error as a contributing factor. Driver errors may include driver distraction, inexperience, drowsy driving, drunken driving, or failure to obey roadway rules. Speeding and distracted drivers were the greatest contributors to crashes across the state in 2019. Speeding was also the highest contributor of fatalities.

Total Motor Vehicle Accidents in Pennsylvania

2019: 125,267 2018: 128,420 2017: 128,188 2016: 129,395 2015: 127,127 2014: 121,317 2013: 124,149 2012: 124,092 2011: 125,395 2010: 121,312 2009: 121,242 2008: 125,327 2007: 130,675 2006: 128,342

Total Car Crash Deaths in Pennsylvania

2019: 1,059 2018: 1,190 2017: 1,137 2016: 1,188 2015: 1,200 2014: 1,195 2013: 1,208 2012: 1,310 2011: 1,286 2010: 1,324 2009: 1,256 2008: 1,468 2007: 1,491 2006: 1,525

Allegheny County, accounted for the most reported traffic accidents, with 9.8%, followed by Philadelphia County with 8.9% and Montgomery County with 7.3%. There were 12,225 total accidents in Allegheny County in 2019. Fifty-nine of these crashes were fatal, while 4,973 caused injuries. The odds of getting into a crash are relatively high. Keep an attorney’s number in your phone in case this emergency situation happens to you.

pittsburgh car accident lawyer

Why Should Injured Passengers Call A Car Accident Attorney For Help?

Whether the driver responsible for your injuries was driving the car that hit you or the car you were riding in, you have a right to pursue all your legal options in seeking the full and fair compensation you are due. We know it can be hard to pursue a personal injury claim against a driver you know, especially when that driver is a family member. Keep in mind that this is not about punishing the driver for his or her mistakes. It is about making sure that you have the money you need to pay for your medical bills and lost wages. Most of the injured passenger cases we have seen boil down to an issue of insurance coverage. That is where our experience is a tremendous advantage. Our Pittsburgh car accident lawyers know precisely how to deal with the insurance companies in these cases to make certain that they don’t try to short-change you in an unfair settlement.

Most Common Causes of Car Accidents in PA and OH

While almost anything can cause an auto accident, there are certain factors that contribute to crashes in Pennsylvania and Ohio more than others. In our years of experience representing auto accident victims, we’ve learned that a handful of factors cause the majority of serious motor vehicle collisions, locally and around the country. The three most common factors are as follows:

  1. Distracted drivers. Distracted driving killed 2,841 people nationwide in 2018. The fatality rates have increased in recent years due to cell phones and handheld electronic devices use behind the wheel. It is illegal to text on a handheld cell phone while driving in Pennsylvania. if you have been hit by a distracted driver, speak to our Pittsburgh distracted driving accident lawyers.
  2. Speeding. Going above posted speed limits, or driving too fast for conditions, makes it almost impossible for drivers to control their vehicles. They may not be able to stop in time to avoid striking another vehicle, object, or pedestrian. They may take a turn too fast and roll over, or lose control and crash into other cars.
  3. Drunk driving. From 2009 to 2018, 3,697 people in Pennsylvania died in alcohol-related motor vehicle crashes. In PA, 1.8% of people reported driving after drinking too much in the last 30 days. The age group most at risk of fatal accidents involving drunk drivers is 21- to 34-year-olds.

Reckless driving, poor weather conditions, red-light running, night driving, teenage drivers, vehicle part defects, unsafe lane changes, and drivers breaking roadway rules are other frequent contributing factors in a Pennsylvania car accident. The best ways to protect yourself from a car accident are to always obey the law, never drive while drunk or distracted, and practice defensive driving techniques.

Common Types of Vehicle Accidents

We have extensive experience representing clients who have suffered a serious injury or have lost a loved one in any type of vehicle accident on state roads, including:

How Long Do You Have to File a Car Accident Claim?

If you get injured in a car accident and wish to file a claim against the other driver for coverage for your medical bills and property repairs, you must act quickly. A law in Pennsylvania known as the statute of limitations places a strict deadline on your right to file a lawsuit after a car accident. The statute of limitations is two years from the date of the crash, in most cases.

Your time limit may be tolled, or paused, in certain circumstances. If you are pursuing a claim for an injured minor, for example, the clock generally does not start until the victim turns 18 (meaning he or she has until age 20 to file). If you do not discover your injuries immediately – such as a brain injury with delayed symptoms – the clock won’t start ticking until you discover or reasonably should have discovered your injury.

Contact Our Car Accident Attorneys in Pittsburgh Today

Call us at (412) 262-2888 or toll-free at 1-800-777-4081 or contact us online to arrange a free case evaluation with an experienced Pittsburgh accident lawyer today.

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