Personal injury is a broad category covering everything from car and motorcycle accidents to medical malpractice and wrongful death. A personal injury case does not just involve compensation for physical injury. You may have missed work, have future medical costs and needs, or suffered emotional trauma from your accident. Whatever your legal needs are, the Media personal injury lawyers at Eckell Sparks have the knowledge and experience to help you achieve the best possible outcome for your case.
In Pennsylvania, there are state laws governing personal injury lawsuits and it is important to know them as they may affect how and when you can file a claim, and what you can expect as an outcome.
Unlike certain states where there are limits for the types of damages a plaintiff can receive in a successful personal injury case, the Pennsylvania state constitution clearly bars the limitation of damages in cases concerning injury and death. There is a cap for punitive damages which is twice the amount of actual damages.
The statute of limitations in Pennsylvania is two years from the date of the injury. Failure to file your lawsuit within this timeframe means there is very little chance that a court will hear your case and therefore you have no avenue to pursue compensation for your injury. If your claim is against a city, county, or state government agency, you have six months to file a notice of intent to sue.
If you are partly to blame for the accident that caused your injuries, it may affect the total amount of damages you can be awarded. Pennsylvania uses a modified comparative negligence rule in shared fault cases. This means that a percentage of fault will be assigned to each of the parties involved. If it is decided that your legal liability for the incident is more than 50 percent, you cannot collect any damages from the other at-fault parties. If your share of the blame is less than 50 percent, the amount of damages you can collect will be reduced by an amount equal to your percentage of fault. For example, if you win your personal injury case and are awarded damages of $100,000, but were 25 percent at fault for what happened, then your damages will be reduced by 25 percent to $75,000.
When it comes to car accidents, Pennsylvania is a no-fault state, which means that for minor accidents, your own insurance covers your medical expenses and lost income, even if the other driver is at fault. The at-fault driver can only be held liable when your case qualifies as a serious injury. Whether or not you have serious injuries from your car accident is a matter of negotiation.
If you or someone you love has been injured due to the negligent behavior of another party, contact a Media personal injury lawyer from Eckell, Sparks, Levy, Auerbach, Monte, Sloane, Matthews & Auslander, P.C. today. Our experienced team will fight on your behalf to hold negligent parties accountable and obtain the compensation you need to move forward with your life. Call 610-565-3700 or contact us online to schedule a free and confidential consultation about your case. With offices in Media and West Chester, Pennsylvania, we serve clients throughout southeastern Pennsylvania, including Chester County, Delaware County, and Montgomery County.