How long do I have to file a claim after a car accident?
Under Pennsylvania law, a person has two years from the day of their car accident to bring a lawsuit seeking damages for any resulting injuries, death or property damage. This is known as the statute of limitations. However, an insurance claim and a lawsuit differ. A claim to the insurance company after a car accident gives notice of your injuries or damages to the insurance company. The insurance company will then examine the situation and come up with an amount. A lawsuit is a civil case filed with the court.
You should file a claim with your insurance company right away. Filing an insurance claim within the two-year window is important. If the insurer denies the initial claim for damages or offers you a settlement that is too low, filing a lawsuit still remains an option. If you file your claim after the two-year lawsuit deadline, the insurance company may have the advantage in that they know the statute of limitations to file a lawsuit has ended. Then the insurance claims process becomes they only option for compensation. To protect your right to compensation, file the claim within-two years from the date of the accident.
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