You almost can’t turn on a radio or television without hearing an insurance commercial. Insurance companies are some of the biggest advertising spenders because every homeowner and vehicle owner needs to carry coverage. They have a massive consumer base and want to establish a brand that people trust.

What insurance companies say in their commercials can lead to unrealistic expectations. However much they may swear that they focus on the needs of policyholders, insurance companies are quick to fight back when someone files a possibly expensive claim.

After a car crash where another driver swerves into your lane or runs a red light, you will need to file an insurance claim against their policy. How much will insurance cover after a wreck in Pennsylvania?

You can receive coverage from your policy and theirs

State law mandates a minimum amount of coverage. You will have at least $5,000 of medical benefits for you and others in your vehicle available as no-fault coverage. You will also have to carry liability coverage in case you are the one at fault. Pennsylvania requires $15,000 worth of bodily injury liability when one person suffers injuries, and the coverage doubles when two or more people get hurt. Finally, every driver needs to carry $5,000 in property damage coverage.

Any driver has the right to carry more coverage. If you have more medical protection on your own policy, you may not need the bodily injury liability coverage carried by the other driver. However, if both of you carry policies closer to the minimum amount required, then you might have more expenses than what insurance will pay. No matter how many costs you incur, the insurance company will never pay more than the amount of coverage that someone carried.

What happens when insurance falls far short of your costs?

Car crashes can total your vehicle, and even a mediocre used car will cost quite a bit more than $5,000. Major injuries like spinal cord injuries and brain damage could leave someone permanently unable to work and in need of lifelong medical support.

In scenarios where you have verifiable losses beyond what insurance will pay and the crash is the result of another driver’s negligence or illegal driving behavior, you can potentially file a civil lawsuit against the driver at fault for the wreck.

Learning more about the options for repayment after a car crash can reduce how much a wreck costs you and your family.