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  • Philadelphia Personal Injury Lawyers

    An accident resulting in serious injury or death can disrupt a family’s life, causing physical pain, emotional distress, and financial ruin. All too often, accidents are the result of someone else’s negligence. When they are, accident victims have the legal right to hold negligent parties accountable and seek damages by pursuing a personal injury claim.

    At Galfand Berger LLP, we know that most people are not familiar with hiring a personal injury lawyer or what the usual steps are in a personal injury case. Our lawyers have found that it is helpful to explain the way these cases are handled.

    Common Questions About Personal Injury Claims

    Some of the most common questions that clients ask include the following:

    • Does it cost money to speak with a lawyer? No! At Galfand Berger LLP, consultations for your potential personal injury claims are always 100 percent free.
    • If I hire Galfand Berger LLP, will I ever have to pay out of pocket for legal services? No! We understand that most injured parties may not be able to afford to pay a retainer agreement or an hourly rate to hire a lawyer. Galfand Berger LLP handles personal injury cases on a contingency fee basis. This means that we will only take a fee if we are successful in obtaining a monetary settlement or favorable verdict on behalf of our clients.
    • What are the first steps a lawyer will take? The first steps a lawyer will take will be to conduct a complete and thorough investigation of the accident and injuries.
    • Will my personal injury case go to court? More than 95 percent of all claims that we handle eventually settle without going to trial, and in many cases, a lawsuit does not need to be filed at all. Even when a lawsuitis initiated, there is a strong possibility of settlement at any time. While a case is pending, there are various stages in which a settlement can occur. Our lawyers always work to ensure that a settlement that is in our client’s best interests be made at the earliest possible time.
    • How much time will it take for my personal injury case to resolve? The time it takes for a case to end depends on many factors, including whether the parties can reach a settlement, where the plaintiff filed the case, and the rate at which other cases are concluded. The exact timeline is not possible to predict. However, at Galfand Berger LLP, we understand that our clients want their cases resolved as quickly as possible, so we do everything we can to get the best possible outcome for our clients.

    What is a Personal Injury Lawsuit?

    A personal injury lawsuit is a legal dispute that has been filed in court between the injured party, also known as the plaintiff, and the party or parties who caused the injuries, also known as the defendants. The defendant is the person or entity that the plaintiff is claiming bears some or all the responsibility for the circumstances that led to the accident. If the plaintiff is successful in their case, most often, the defendant’s insurance company will have to reimburse the plaintiff for the damages they caused because of the accident. When a lawsuit is filed, it is a civil matter that involves a private citizen bringing an action against another individual, business, government entity, or a group of entities. There are two resolutions that most personal injury lawsuits will take:

    • A verdict. The case could go to trial, wherein both sides argue their case and a judge or jury will determine the culpability of both sides in the case. If a judge or jury finds a defendant liable, they may award a dollar amount to the plaintiff.
    • A settlement. Lawyers representing both sides will negotiate an amount with which both sides are comfortable. Once an agreement in principle is reached, a formal written agreement will be drafted for both sides to sign.

    Types of Personal Injury

    There are many instances when one might sustain an injury. Among those cases include:

    • Auto accidents: Hundreds of thousands of people are injured in car accidents every year. Even minor accidents can result in months of doctors’ visits and physical therapy. In many cases, an accident is not just the result of bad driving, but can be caused by other factors, such as roadway design, negligent maintenance of a vehicle, or the negligence of a bar for overserving alcohol to the negligent driver. At Galfand Berger LLP, we leave no stone unturned to make sure all responsible parties are identified.
    • Medical Malpractice: When a medical provider, like a doctor, nurse, or pharmacist, fails to treat a patient in a method that conforms to medical norms, they could be subjected to a medical malpractice lawsuit. A medical provider may fail to perform the proper medical procedure or fail to treat a patient properly. They could also fail to diagnose a particular problem, resulting in a condition worsening unnecessarily with a patient.
    • Truck accidents: Given the size and strength of the vehicle involved, truck accidents have the potential to be much more devastating and horrific than traditional car accidents. Also complicating these cases are the various federal regulations in the trucking industry. There are numerous parties that can be held liable for an accident outside of the driver, making these types of cases complex.
    • Slip and fall accidents: The owner of a property has a legal obligation to maintain the safety of that space, whether it be in an office, a store, or even a residence. Owners who fail to keep their area safe could be held responsible for any injuries sustained.
    • Wrongful Death: Sadly, some accidents are catastrophic enough that they result in the death of a person. Family and friends must cope with this unexpected loss. While there is the emotional toll, there is a financial one as well. The death of a loved one can mean a loss of that person’s income. It can also result in more expenses as that person might have been fulfilling certain duties around the house that the family must pay for, such as childcare and home maintenance.
    • Products Liability: Suffering an injury when operating a machine in the workplace, using a power tool, or using a home appliance can be the result of a defective product. Injuries may run the gamut from minor burns to catastrophic injuries, including a severed limb and, in some circumstances, fatal injuries.

    These are just a few examples of the types of personal injury claims that can be brought when someone is injured. If you have been hurt, Galfand Berger LLP can provide you with a free consultation as to the type of personal injury claim you may be entitled to bring to get compensation for your injuries.

    Statute of Limitations for Filing a Lawsuit

    The statute of limitations is the time the victim has from the day of their injury to when they must file a lawsuit. If the statute of limitations expires before the victim has a chance to file their lawsuit, they will not be able to file it afterwards. The statute of limitations differs by state and the type of claim to be brought. Because of these deadlines, it is imperative that an injury victim speak with a personal injury lawyer as soon as possible following the accident. A personal injury lawyer will need time to conduct a complete investigation before filing a lawsuit, including identifying all of the responsible parties and causes of action.

    What can a Personal Injury Lawyer Do for Accident Victims?

    A personal injury lawyer will conduct a complete and thorough investigation of the victim’s accident and injuries. This process will entail the lawyer looking into the situation, including speaking with anyone that witnessed the accident, as well as the conditions prior to it. A lawyer will also collect evidence, such as any relevant documents, including police reports, photos, video surveillance, medical reports, and other documentation. It might be necessary to consult with medical experts to gain an understanding of how the accident might have happened.

    Once a lawyer has collected all the evidence and witness statements that they need, they will examine the case to determine when they believe the case will succeed in court. If a lawyer believes that the case has merit, they will proceed with making a claim against the responsible parties or filing a lawsuit. If not, they will suggest to the victim what their best course of action would be going forward.

    What can a Personal Injury Lawyer Do for Accident Victims

    Damages Victims can Recover in a Personal Injury Claim

    No two personal injury cases are the same, and the effects of an injury can take many forms. Many times, when someone experiences a serious injury, they must undergo a series of doctors’ visits or medical treatments. Often times, accident victims will lose income, or have to pay others to handle household chores during their recovery period. Among the damages that victims can pursue in their claim include the following:

    • Medical bills. When a person sustains an injury, they can demand that the person held liable for the accident pay for their medical bills.
    • Continuing medical care. Certain injuries can require long term care that will continue long after the personal injury claim resolves, such as ongoing therapy, medical monitoring, or home health care. These expenses can be the responsibility of the liable party.
    • Lost wages. Depending on the severity of an injury, a victim might not be able to return to work immediately or, an injured person might be able to return to work, but at reduced hours or with restrictions that prevent them from earning their full paycheck. Therefore, the person might not be able to earn as much as they did before the accident. The parties responsible for an accident are also responsible for reimbursing both past and future lost income caused by an injury.
    • Pain and suffering. In many cases, the value of the pain and suffering and emotional distress caused by an accident far out-values the economic damages, such as medical bills or lost wages. While it seems impossible to put a price tag on the loss of a loved one or losing the ability to walk up a flight of steps without pain, ultimately, when a case goes to trial, that is exactly what a jury is asked to decide.
    • Punitive damages. In cases where the responsible party acts recklessly or without any regard for the safety of others, such as a drunk driver, the injured party can be awarded punitive damages as a punishment to the responsible party.
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    In many states, including Pennsylvania and New Jersey, the amount of damages that are awarded can be reduced if the injured party shares some responsibility for the accident.

    Philadelphia Personal Injury Lawyers at Galfand Berger LLP Help Victims File Personal Injury Claims

    The Philadelphia personal injury lawyers at Galfand Berger LLP are experienced in representing injured victims. If you were injured, a member of our legal team can evaluate your claim and fight for the justice you deserve. To schedule a free consultation, call us today at 800-222-8792 or contact us online. From our offices in Philadelphia, Bethlehem, Lancaster, and Reading, Pennsylvania, we help clients throughout Pennsylvania and New Jersey, including Allentown and Harrisburg.