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What are the rights of a Pennsylvania driver who gets into an accident in New Jersey?

New Jersey car accident law is very complex. It is important to discuss your case and your options with a qualified New Jersey car and truck accident lawyer. The following answer is informational only and does not provide any legal advice.

In this scenario, a Pennsylvania driver who gets into a New Jersey car accident would be able to make a claim for up to $250,000 of medical benefits from their auto insurance carrier. However, they would probably not be able to recover pain and suffering damages unless their injury falls into one of six statutory exceptions: permanent injury such as scarring, death, dismemberment, disfigurement, loss of fetus, etc.

New Jersey has a special statute known as the “Deemer Statute,” which limits the ability of non-resident drivers to recover from injuries sustained in car accidents which occur in New Jersey. This statute applies to any non-New Jersey driver who gets into an accident in New Jersey. Once the non-resident driver crosses over state lines and enters the state, he or she is “deemed” to be a New Jersey driver, unless his or her car insurance company does not do business inside the state of New Jersey. The deemer statute would limit the right of the Pennsylvania driver to obtain a full recovery.

Obtaining Medical Benefits

One marginal benefit of the deemer statute is the $250,000 in medical benefits which are automatically available. However, for most people, they already have medical benefits under their own car or health insurance policies. They do not need this excess insurance. In addition, many auto insurance carriers attempt to deny or otherwise drag their feet in making payment on these PIP or medical benefits. So, in other words, getting the $250,000 of medical benefits might not be a real benefit for many people. It would be a great benefit for a driver with no available health insurance who gets into a catastrophic accident when in New Jersey. However, for most car accident victims, their injuries are not catastrophic.

Obtaining Financial Recovery for Injuries

In addition to the $250,000 of medical benefits, a Pennsylvania driver in an accident in New Jersey is deemed to have a verbal threshold or limitation on lawsuit auto insurance policy. In general, this will limit their ability to recover for pain and suffering unless the injury falls into one of six very narrow exceptions (permanent injury such as scarring, death, dismemberment, etc.). Such a driver, would however, generally be able to file a lawsuit against the other party to recover economic damages, like lost wages.

For more information, access our free legal article about New Jersey’s deemer statute and the verbal threshold or limitation on lawsuit.

If you’d like to have your case reviewed by our New Jersey car and truck accident lawyers, call 215.925.4451. Our lawyers are available for a free, no obligation legal consultation.

*This website does not provide legal advice. Every case is unique and it is important 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.

The car and truck accident lawyers at Schwartz & Blackman handle cases in the Pennsylvania and New Jersey area:

  • PA: Berks County, Bucks County, Chester County, Delaware County, Montgomery County, Philadelphia County, Allentown, Lehigh Valley, Norristown, Philadelphia
  • NJ: Atlantic County, Burlington County, Camden County, Gloucester County, Mercer County, Middlesex County, Monmouth County, Camden, Cherry Hill, New Jersey shore cities



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    Pennsylvania Office
    The Pavilion
    261 Old York Rd., Suite 504
    Jenkintown, PA 19046
    Tel: (215) 925-4451
    Fax: (215) 574-1200

    New Jersey Office
    1415 Route 70 East
    Cherry Hill, NJ 08034
    Tel: (856) 427-0614
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