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Five Steps For Filing a Personal Injury Lawsuit in PA

Five Steps For Filing a Personal Injury Lawsuit in PA

How a Personal Injury Law Works in PA 

Personal injury lawsuits are often filed against insurance companies after an accident occurs. If you were injured due to another person’s negligence, you may be entitled to compensation under Pennsylvania law. In addition to understanding the five main steps to filing a personal injury case, you need to understand how these laws apply to your case.

An experienced lawyer can help you determine whether you have a viable claim and negotiate a settlement with the insurance company. The personal injury lawyers at Justice Guardians offer free consultations to review your potential case.

Examples of common personal injuries include:

  • car accidents
  • slip and falls
  • dog bites
  • medical malpractice
  • wrongful death

Seek medical treatment at any of these local hospitals:

Have an Experienced Personal Injury Attorney Review Your Case

Personal injury cases are often complex and difficult to understand. It may seem like you’re dealing with one thing after another, but there are actually several things going on behind the scenes.

In order to win your personal injury case, you need to hire an experienced attorney who knows what they are doing and is familiar with personal injury laws in Pennsylvania.

That’s why it’s essential to find a lawyer who has been practicing law for years. The personal injury lawyers at Justice Guardians have been representing injured residents for decades and specialize in all types of personal injury cases.

An experienced personal injury attorney will review your case thoroughly and provide you with sound advice.

They will explain everything to you in plain English so you don’t have to ask any questions. This means you won’t waste valuable time trying to decipher legal jargon. Instead, you can focus on recovering from your injuries and moving forward with your life.

Why hiring an experienced personal injury attorney is crucial to winning your case:

  • They Will Help You Understand What Happened
  • They Can Provide Expert Advice
  • They Have Experience With Similar Cases

Proving Negligence in a Personal Injury Case

Before filing a personal injury lawsuit, you must prove that the defendant was negligent. Negligence is defined as failing to act reasonably under the circumstances. In 2016, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), reported that unintentional injuries were the fourth leading cause of death nationwide, leading to 146,571 deaths.

There are two types of negligence claims: strict liability and ordinary negligence. Strict liability refers to situations where the defendant has no duty to protect the plaintiff from harm. Ordinary negligence means that the defendant owed a duty of care to the plaintiff.

  • Duty Of Care

It is generally accepted that every person owes a duty of reasonable care to others. This duty extends to those who foreseeably come in contact with the person.

A duty of care exists whenever one party should expect the other to conform his conduct to a certain standard. For example, if you invite a friend over to watch television, you owe him a duty of care to ensure that he does not trip and fall on the stairs leading to the living room.

  • Fault And Damages

When a person proves that the defendant was negligent, she becomes eligible to receive damages. These damages include medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and emotional distress.

Damages awarded depend upon the severity of the injury sustained. For example, if a person suffers a broken leg, he may recover $50,000 in damages. On the other hand, if a person sustains a minor cut, he may only recover $10,000 in damages.

Filing a Claim for Compensation

After proving fault, the next step in filing a personal injury lawsuit is to decide whether you wish to pursue a claim against the insurance company directly or against the driver’s insurance policy.

Insurance policies usually contain a provision called “no-fault” coverage. No-fault coverage protects the insured from paying out-of-pocket expenses such as medical bills.

This type of coverage is mandatory in most states. However, if the victim chooses to sue the insurance company directly, then the insurance company will still pay its share of the settlement.

Negotiating Your Case

If you choose to settle with the insurance company directly, you will not be required to pay attorney fees. However, you will have to give up part of your recovery.

On the other hand, if you go after the driver’s insurer, you will not have to pay attorney fees. But, you will have to pay a portion of the settlement amount back to the insurance company.

The decision to settle with the insurance carrier directly or to sue the driver’s carrier depends on several factors. Some of these factors include:

  • Whether the insurance company offered to settle within the limits of the policy
  • How much money the insurance company offers to pay
  • What percentage of fault the insurance company assigns to the driver
  • The extent of the injuries suffered
  • The cost of litigation
  • The likelihood of success in winning a judgment
  • The potential impact of the verdict on future settlements
  • The ability to collect on a judgment
  • The possibility of receiving punitive damages

Taking a Personal Injury Claim to Court in Pennsylvania

Personal injury claims are common in Pennsylvania. If you were injured due to another person’s negligence, you may be entitled to compensation for medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages. The Pennsylvania Department of Health reported that 20,175 people were hospitalized for injuries in Philadelphia County in 2014, and approximately three-quarters of these were for unintentional injuries. 

However, filing a personal injury claim in court can be complicated. We recommend that you meet with an experienced personal injury lawyer immediately after you seek medical treatment. This way, you can discuss your injuries, gather documents and begin gathering information about your case.

They will evaluate your situation and advise you of your rights under the law. They will also explain the process of taking a personal injury claim to court.

It depends on the circumstances surrounding your accident. Some cases should be filed immediately after the incident occurred, while others should wait until you receive medical treatment.

Here are some factors to consider:

  • How serious is your injury?
  • Will you miss work or school?
  • Does your injury prevent you from working?
  • Has anyone else suffered similar injuries?
  • Can you afford to pay for medical care?
  • Has anyone offered to pay for your medical expenses?
  • Have you received any offers of settlement?

Once you decide to pursue a personal injury claim, you need to choose a competent attorney. An experienced attorney knows the ins and outs of personal injury litigation. He or she has seen hundreds of cases like yours and understands what evidence is necessary to prove each element of your claim.

Remember, there are no guarantees when it comes to winning a personal injury case. But an experienced attorney can help ensure you receive fair compensation for your injuries.

Why You Need a Personal Injury Lawyer

If you were injured in an accident and want to recover compensation for your injuries, then it is time to contact a personal injury attorney. At Justice Guardians Pennsylvania, we are ready and willing to help you pursue a personal injury claim. We understand that you may have many questions about filing a personal injury claim and we are here to answer those questions.

At the end of the day, you are going to need a personal injury attorney to advocate for you during a lawsuit. At Justice Guardians Pennsylvania, we are dedicated to providing exceptional representation and, as a result, we offer a contingency fee arrangement. This means that you do not pay any legal fees unless we recover compensation on your behalf. This is why it is essential to retain a personal injury attorney right away.

If you or someone you love was injured in an accident, then contact our personal injury attorneys at Justice Guardians in Pennsylvania.

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David Petrone
Date Published: October 20, 2022
David Petrone is a personal injury attorney at Justice Guardians.
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