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April 18th, 2012

How can a car accident victim in PA or NJ receive compensation for lost wages?

How can a car accident victim in PA or NJ receive compensation for lost wages?

There are two ways an individual injured in a car accident can receive compensation for lost pay or lost wages in PA or NJ. First, an individual injured in an auto accident in PA or NJ may be able to make a claim for first party benefits and recoup some lost pay. Second, the laws of Pennsylvania and New Jersey provide a remedy for car accident victims who, through no fault of their own, suffer injuries and related damages like lost wages or time lost from work. This can be accomplished by filing a car accident lawsuit against the at-fault driver.

First Party Benefits Claims

Under Pennsylvania and New Jersey laws, individuals who purchased income continuation or income loss benefits may file claims with their own car insurance companies. This is true regardless of who caused the accident. These benefits are generally known as PIP or personal injury protection benefits. The lost wage benefits coverage is one type of PIP coverage available and is optional in PA and NJ. Many individuals who have income loss benefits don’t even know they purchased this important type of coverage. Therefore, it is important to check your car insurance policy. If you did not purchase this coverage, you should do so.

There may be waiting periods, and the payout amounts vary. As an example, under PA auto insurance law, insurance companies are only required to offer income loss benefits of at least 80% of gross income, up to at least $2,500 per month and up to a maximum of at least $50,000. In order to make a claim, you must contact your car insurance company which will send forms and require documentation from your employers and medical doctors.

Car Accident Lawsuits in PA & NJ

Under Pennsylvania and New Jersey laws, individuals who are injured in auto accidents caused by others are entitled to seek financial compensation through the civil courts, i.e., filing a civil auto accident lawsuit. Generally, injured individuals can make claims to recover medical bills and lost wages which were not paid through PIP claims. However, PA and NJ laws impose limitations on the right to sue for pain and suffering. In PA, the limitation is known as “limited tort.” In NJ, the limitation is referred to as “limitation on lawsuit” or “verbal threshold.” Basically, these limitations act as filters, limiting an injured driver or passenger’s right to receive compensation for pain and suffering. There are several exceptions, which you should discuss with your lawyer. For instance, in PA, pedestrians who are injured in car accidents are not bound by their tort elections.

For more information access our free legal articles on recovering economic damages and non-economic damages in a PA or NJ car accident case.

Pennsylvania & New Jersey Auto Injury Law Firm

To submit your case for review by our Pennsylvania and New Jersey car accident lawyers, call 215.39.9255.  Our car accident lawyers handle pedestrian, car and truck accidents in the Philadelphia area including the suburbs: Montgomery County, Delaware County, Bucks County, etc.

**This website does not provide legal advice.  Every case is unique and it is crucial to get a qualified, expert legal opinion prior to making any decisions about your case.  See the full disclaimer at the bottom of this page.

Last legal review: October 7, 2016