Sometimes, people are unfortunately injured because of an accident that was caused by the negligence or reckless actions or another individual or group. The severity of the victim’s injuries and the cost of medical care is often dependent upon the kind of accident the victim suffered. When someone is severely injured, they may not yet know the full extent of their injuries or how their accident affected them.
This can put people in significant financial distress down the road, whether they struggle to afford current medical care for their injuries, have to miss work, or are forced to pay for past medical bills from their initial hospital stay. If you’re in this situation and feel that the accident which caused your injuries was not your fault and that legal recourse may be an option, the Philadelphia personal injury lawyers from Shrager & Sachs can fight for you to get the compensation you deserve.
Shrager & Sachs can look into your case and carefully calculate what the accident has cost you. We look at the accident, what factors allowed it to occur, and how your injuries have affected you in terms of medical expenses, missing work, and any pain or distress that you’ve been put through.
We understand that what you’re going through is stressful—but we’re here to help. We won’t let your case get swept under the rug. You deserve to have your voice be heard and for the responsible people to be held accountable for their actions. They need to know that their negligence cost you and need to make sure this never happens again.
Personal injury cases can be complex. To understand how these cases work, let’s first take a look into the definitions of personal injury and negligence so you have a clear understanding of what those terms mean:
Personal Injury and Negligence
In a personal injury case, the injured party can bring a civil lawsuit to the party that caused the injuries. Typically, the party that caused the injuries did so because of reckless conduct or negligence.
Negligence can happen at any moment. People can ignore ongoing problems. They may also fail to stay alert or make sure certain things are working properly. In most cases, the injured party is owed a duty of care that wasn’t met.
Medical care providers, for example, such as doctors, surgeons, nurses, and pharmacists, owe their patients care that includes reasonable treatments for their condition, not injuring them through fault, and informing them of risks when it comes to treatments and procedures.
When a duty of care isn’t met a person can be hurt, which will most likely cost them financial damages. The injured person may have had to stay in the hospital and require treatment when they’re out— which can result in expensive medical bills. The injury may also prevent them from working or returning to their job. Because the other party was responsible for the accident, the injured party can hold them accountable for their actions and seek compensation.
Personal Injury Cases We Represent Clients For
Shrager & Sachs has experience in many types of personal injury cases in Philadelphia. We’re proud to get desirable results for our clients. Some of our personal injury practice areas include:
Motor Vehicle Accidents
Negligent drivers can cause car accidents, truck accidents, and motorcycle accidents—which can all severely injure those involved and cause significant property damage. Our lawyers are trained in analyzing the scene of the crash and finding out what happened that lead to your injuries.
Determining fault isn’t always easy. A truck driver, for example, could be using a vehicle that hadn’t been inspected before going on the road. If the driver experienced issues on the road with brakes or steering and got into an accident, it wouldn’t necessarily be their fault. The trucking company would most likely be held liable in that situation because they knowingly put an unsafe vehicle on the road.
Sometimes, the products that you buy may have issues that cause your injury. Defective products can include auto parts, medicine, medical devices, and more. Any product has the potential to be dangerous if the manufacturer doesn’t test or make them correctly.
Injuries from products can be serious and may possibly be life-changing. While it can be intimidating to bring a product liability claim against a manufacturer, you may need the compensation so you can afford related expenses and care. We can help you stand up to these manufacturing companies, so you get the justice you deserve.
There may be instances where you’re injured on someone else’s property. It could be a business, office, government building, or hospital. No matter the property, the owners are supposed to keep it safe for the people that will be on the property. When they fail to do this, they’re knowingly putting those people at risk.
They shouldn’t continue to put people in danger and you shouldn’t have to take sole financial responsibility for what happened. We may be able to prove that you weren’t at fault in a premises liability case.
In some situations, negligence can cost people their lives. People can lose their lives to drunk drivers, distracted drivers, and negligent surgeons. The shock and pain of experiencing a wrongful death can make the process of filing a claim seem too daunting, but your claim can do two things:
First, you can get justice for your loved one. We’ll prove that the other party’s negligence was the reason why your loved one passed away. Second, the compensation will help you with the sudden loss of losing someone you were financially dependent on. You can mourn for your loved one without having to worry about finances.
We cover more areas of personal injury law, which you can see here. Our lawyers are ready to help you with your claim. Let’s examine the process of personal injury claims and what you can expect:
What Does the Claim Process Look Like?
The journey of filing a personal injury claim to settling can be long and has a lot of steps. We’re going to break down the process, so you have a clearer idea of what to expect.
- The Injury Occurs. When a person is injured because of someone else’s negligence and has incurred financial losses, they may choose to seek financial compensation.
- You Hire a Personal Injury Lawyer. The next step is to get in touch with an attorney to ensure your rights are protected and you get the compensation you deserve. During this process the lawyer will discuss your legal options with you and determine if you have grounds for a valid claim. When there are grounds for a claim, the attorney and client will proceed if the client hires them.
- File the Claim. After the claim is filed and the defendant is made legally aware of it, they will likely hire a lawyer as well.
- Litigation. This occurs before trial to see if a settlement can be reached. Both sides will present evidence to argue their side and choose to settle the matter outside of the courthouse or set a date if they proceed to trial. Giving evidence and going over both sides of the case can take months and sometimes years.
- Settlement. It’s common for most cases to settle before going to trial. Your lawyer will help you make decisions to continue going to trial or to agree to a settlement amount.
Now that you have a general idea of the claims process, there are a few other details you should know about, like when you can file.
Statutes of Limitations
Most personal injury claims have to be brought forward within a given time frame referred to as a statute of limitations. These vary from state to state. At Shrager & Sachs, we stay up to date on Philadelphia and Pennsylvania law changes and know the time limits given to file a claim.
It’s imperative to discuss your case with us as soon as possible. The details will be fresh in your mind, so you can give us the most accurate report of what happened. Also, this gives us plenty of time to learn all we can about your case. Then, we can file your claim and start working on getting you the compensation you need.
Waiting to file your claim has certain risks. Certain evidence that could have been used may not be available anymore, such as road debris or skid marks in a vehicle accident scene. There’s also the issue of trying to recount something that happened a year ago. It’s difficult to do this with precision.
You may also find that you’ve waited too long to come forward with your claim. In this case, your claim may be thrown out and you won’t be able to fight for compensation.
Dealing With Insurance Companies
While it’s important to start your claim quickly, this doesn’t mean it’s important to settle quickly. After you’re in an accident, there’s a strong chance that an insurance adjuster will contact you to discuss the details of what happened. This can be tricky because your words can be used against you to lower your compensation. The insurance company is looking for ways to save the money that you are owed.
Your personal injury attorney in Philadelphia can help you with this process and inform you of ways you can be sure to protect your claim and compensation when speaking with an insurance adjuster. Speaking with adjusters is often a tricky situation, and while giving a recorded statement, you may accidentally omit important facts out of nervousness or you may not be aware of certain facts at all during that time. These omissions could harm you later.
For example, you may be experiencing neck pain. If you tell the insurance adjuster this, they will make a note of a neck injury. But say a few days later other symptoms show up and it turns out you really had a back injury. The insurance adjuster can then question why you didn’t bring that up at the time of the conversation and you may miss out on insurance that covers back injuries.
Overall, you should only stick to the basic facts that you know when speaking with an insurance adjuster. You can inform them of contact information and the location of your car, so they can evaluate it, but do not go into detail about the crash or your injuries. It’s important that you make it clear that you won’t be discussing much on the phone and you can say you won’t be saying any more until you have all the information regarding the accident. Then, your lawyers have time to conduct their accident investigation and you have time to know everything about your injuries and the recommended treatment.
The last aspect of dealing with insurance companies that your attorney can help you with is not settling early. It’s a tempting situation—you speak with the adjuster, they give you a settlement number, you agree, and it’s done; however, you may be doing yourself a major disservice.
The insurance company is not looking out for your best interests. You also don’t have all the facts at this point—like the back injury example discussed above. You may find that your injuries are worth more than the compensation you’ve been given, and that settlement would have gone to paying for your medical care. An early settlement could put you in a difficult financial situation while you’re trying to recover.
A Successful Settlement With a Personal Injury Lawyer at Your Side
You deserve a law firm that will fight for your rights no matter what. Shrager & Sachs have helped citizens of Philadelphia for years, and we will continue to do so. Our lawyers know how to carefully investigate a case, gather the evidence needed to support your claim, and get you a favorable settlement that will help you recover from your injuries.
If you’ve been injured due to another person’s negligence, you can seek justice. Get in touch with us today and schedule a free consultation.