Pennsylvania Personal Injury Lawyer
Pennsylvania Personal Injury Lawyer
“Personal injury” is a broad term defining a number of accidents that cause harm to a person. A personal injury claim is the legal action you bring to recover damages after a negligent party injures you or incapacitates a loved one. Be sure to contact a Primerus Pennsylvania personal injury lawyer for help.
Pennsylvania Personal Injury Attorney With Proven Track Record of Success
To begin a personal injury claim, you need to file a claim with the at-fault party’s insurance company. The type of personal injury decides with which carrier you file. For example, if you sustain injuries in a car accident, you would file with the negligent party’s car insurance. If you sustain injuries in a slip and fall at a retail store, you would file a claim with the store’s business liability insurance. If that slip and fall happened at a private residence, you would file against the owner’s homeowner’s insurance.
In order to have a valid personal injury case, you must prove that another party’s negligence caused you harm. You must be able to prove these four elements:
- Duty of care – The negligent party had a duty to act in a reasonable manner to avoid causing you harm. For example, other drivers owe you a duty of care to drive safely and attentively in order to prevent accidents.
- Breach of duty – The negligent party failed to act in a reasonable manner. This is commonly called negligence. An example is if a driver is intoxicated and runs a stoplight, hitting your car in the process.
- Causation – You would not have suffered injury but for the negligent actions of the other party. In our example, you would not have suffered injuries if the intoxicated driver did not run the red light.
- Damages – Due to the negligent actions of the other party, you suffered actual damages. If you needed surgery because of the car accident and your injuries kept you out of work for several weeks, your damages would include your medical bills, lost income, and other damages.
Damages you may expect to collect in a personal injury claim include economic damages such as medical expenses and lost wages. Damages may also include noneconomic damages such as compensation for pain and suffering caused by the accident or loss of enjoyment of life if your injury is long-term or permanently disabling.
In order to prove negligence and prove you suffered damages, you must provide evidence to support these claims. Evidence for a personal injury claim may include any of the following:
- Photographs of the scene and injuries
- Police or incident reports
- Surveillance video
- Witness testimony
- Medical records
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Once you have filed your claim, you must present evidence that shows another party was mostly or completely at fault for causing the accident in which you sustained injuries.
Proving Fault is Vital
Pennsylvania follows a comparative negligence law that bars recovery for those more than 50 percent at fault. This means that if an investigation finds you more than 50 percent at fault for the accident, you cannot recover any of your damages. And your percentage of fault below that will proportionately reduce your settlement. So proving fault is very important to protect your recovery.
Do Not Give a Recorded Statement
As the insurance company reviews your claim, there is a good chance that an adjuster from the company will contact you. If the adjuster asks you for a recorded statement, do not consent to give one until you have spoken with a Pennsylvania injury lawyer. The adjuster can use anything you say in the statement against you.
Continue Your Medical Care
Also make sure you continue medical treatment as your claim progresses. If you do not, the adjuster may claim that your injuries are not serious or that you fabricated them. Remember that you do not have to pay for this out-of-pocket; you can use your health insurance and then include these costs in your settlement.
Run Settlement Offers by Your Pennsylvania Injury Attorney
If the insurer offers you a settlement, carefully review it before you accept. If the insurer offers a settlement before you made a demand, it is likely the offer will be a fraction of what you should be demanding in your claim. Do not accept a low offer and continue to negotiate your claim until you reach a settlement you can agree upon. And always run your offer by your Pennsylvania injury attorney before you accept.
You May Have to File a Lawsuit
If the insurance company refuses to meet your compensation demands, you may file a personal injury lawsuit. If your case does not settle before trial, your attorney will present your case before a judge and jury in a Pennsylvania court.
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Pennsylvania Personal Injury Attorney
The Pennsylvania personal injury attorneys handle a wide variety of personal injury claims including:
- Vehicular accidents
- Boating accidents
- Work accidents (workers’ compensation)
- Premises liability (slip and fall)
- Dog bites and animal attacks
- Nursing home abuse or neglect
- Product liability
- Medical malpractice
To get started with a Pennsylvania personal injury lawyer contact Primerus today. To schedule an initial consultation or to discuss the circumstances of your personal injury, contact a Pennsylvania injury lawyer to determine if you have a claim.