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Downingtown Personal Injury Attorney

When you sustain an injury in Downingtown, Pennsylvania, pain can take on several forms. As your medical bills pile up, you can feel financial pressure. Your injury can prevent you from physically performing tasks that you could once do with ease, causing mental distress by invoking a sense of isolation, tension, depression, and a lack of motivation. You may feel frustrated and like you have nowhere to turn, and the control you once had is slipping through your fingers. Due to the accident and another party’s negligence, you have no choice but to take on a significant physical and mental burden.

The next step you take can define the rest of your life. You may want to accept your situation and take the settlement the insurance company offers, or you can call a Downingtown personal injury lawyer and get an ally to help you regain control.

Understanding Negligence in Personal Injury Claims in Downingtown, PA

Negligence is the cornerstone of many personal injury cases. When another entity or person is guilty of doing something wrong or is negligent, which causes unnecessary injuries to another person, you can hold them liable for a personal injury claim. In addition, the negligent party or their insurance company can get held accountable for monetary compensation for damages as long as the damages are in response to injuries sustained in the accident.

Generally speaking, negligence is an action or a direct failure to act reasonably as any other person would in the same circumstances. For example, a driver may come up to what they think is an empty stretch of road and decide to speed well beyond the posted limits. They lose control of their car and smash into yours as a result. Similarly, if you have a landlord who refuses to repair an old, broken staircase on the premises and a tenant falls and injures themselves due to the landlord’s choices, you could have grounds for a claim.

Misconduct or negligence is usually the root cause of many accidents involving cars, motorcycles, buses, pedestrians, trucks, slip and fall accidents, hit and run, and swimming pool accidents.

How Do I Know If I Have a Personal Injury Case?

A Downingtown personal injury attorney often relies on negligence to help them build a case and prove that another party caused the accident that resulted in the plaintiff’s injuries. Negligence has critical elements that factor in too, and knowing what they are will help you understand how your injury law firm can help you get compensation.

The first step in building a personal injury claim is to prove that the defendant had a duty of care that they breached, which caused your injuries. Next, the injured party must demonstrate how the defendant breached their duty of care. Finally, your accident lawyer will have to prove that you suffered injuries due to the breach of duty.

To win your case, your legal team has to prove that the defendant had a duty of care to you and anyone else involved at the time of the accident and their actions failed to meet the reasonable level of care. Of course, what the court defines as reasonable depends on the facts of your case. One good example is that you were in a car accident, sustained injuries, and sued the defendant using a personal injury lawsuit.

All motorists have a legal duty to operate their vehicles with reasonable care while they’re on the road. In addition, they must consider external factors like visibility, traffic conditions, and the weather. State legislatures put laws in place that dictate how all motorists should operate when they drive, and they also prohibit motorists from engaging in dangerous actions like drinking while driving. So, if the defendant violates the laws, this can help prove that they breached their duty of care if it resulted in an accident and injured parties.

Once your injury lawyer establishes the duty of care for the defendant, they’ll have to prove that they breached it and how they did so. What did or didn’t they do that caused the accident? Your injury attorney can help establish fault in a personal injury case using the following:

  • Obtaining eyewitness testimony
  • Proving the defendant broke traffic laws
  • Using testimony from the plaintiff
  • Using the examination of evidence from the accident scene, including vehicle damage, to establish what happened

In your case, maybe the defendant had too many drinks and decided to try and drive home. Unfortunately, they missed a stop sign and plowed into the side of your vehicle. Your lawyer could use this evidence to prove the defendant caused the accident with their decisions, which is the final step in establishing negligence for a personal injury case.

What Are the Possible Outcomes If I File a Claim in Downingtown?

There are several different possible outcomes when you file a personal injury lawsuit in Downingtown, PA. However, in most instances, you can expect one of the following:

  • Lawsuit – As the plaintiff, you’ll file a civil complaint against the defendant or the entity you believe to be at fault for the accident. You’ll argue that the defendant was negligent and this caused your injuries.
  • Settlement – It’s common to settle these cases without involving the courts. The two parties and their injury attorneys will meet to figure out a solution. This process starts with negotiation and a written agreement that outlines that either side won’t take further legal action. You’ll usually get a set amount of money to end the lawsuit.
  • Trial – A trial is a court proceeding where the case’s outcome is up to a jury. In Pennsylvania, 5 out of 6 jurors agree to reach a verdict. Even if you file a lawsuit, you can settle at any point, so you may not go to trial. It’s uncommon for personal injury lawsuits to reach the trial stage.
  • Appeal – If you take the case to trial and don’t win, you can appeal the court’s ruling. It’s up to your Downingtown personal injury lawyer to prove that you have grounds to appeal the decision, and this usually means there was a fault with the original verdict.

Many personal injury lawsuits result in settling. Even if your case makes it to trial, it’s still possible to settle. You should also note that not all injury law firms will go to trial, and some only settle outside the court. Even though a settlement is usually faster, you should always pick a firm, like Wilk Law, that can take your case to trial if necessary.

What Are the Three Types of Personal Injury Damages?

Damages are the money you can recover as a victim when your personal injury attorney proves that the defendant committed a violation resulting in an accident or that they violated their duty of care. The three main types of damages are punitive, special, and general. However, it’s common to use compensatory damages to encompass both general and special damage categories.

Compensatory (General and Special) Damages

Also called non-economic damages, these are the ones that are challenging to calculate. Mental anguish, dismemberment, disfigurement, suffering, pain, or loss of enjoyment of life all fall into this category.

Special damages are economic damages, so they differ from general damages even though they are grouped under the same broad category. Future costs of medical care, medical expenses, and past and future lost earnings all qualify.

Punitive Damages

The court could award you punitive damages if the defendant’s behavior were harmful to you. For example, if a manufacturer knew about risks associated with taking a specific medication and didn’t disclose them, causing one or several parties injury, the judge could award these damages. Punitive damages punish the defendant and discourage other entities from doing the same thing.

Personal Injury Cases Our Downingtown Law Firm Handles

Our personal injury law firm has the knowledge and experience to handle various client cases. We can help you build suits for:

Tractor Trailer and Truck Accidents

In Downingtown, US 30 runs east to west and is a huge transport hub for 18-wheelers and semi-trucks transporting cargo to and from businesses. With more of these large vehicles on the road, the chances of accidents also rise, as do the chances of being catastrophically injured. However, we can negotiate with the insurance company, figure out which party is at fault, assess your losses, and work to settle your claim.

Bicycle Accidents

The scenic parks and miles of bike lanes that run through and around the city put cyclists and motorists in close quarters. If you’re the victim of a bicycle accident, our team can investigate and collect evidence, identify the liable parties, and take your case to court if you can’t settle it.

Auto Accidents

Every car accident case we handle is unique, so you’ll need tailored solutions. We’ll start by investigating the accident and find all of the parties. We can also calculate your losses, hire experts to support your injury claims, negotiate with the insurance company, and prepare your case for court.

Mass Transit Accidents

Downingtown station has both SEPTA Regional Rail’s Paoli/Thorndale Line and Amtrak’s Keystone Service running through it daily. There is also a very popular bus line that runs through the city. They make navigating different attractions or points very easy, but they also increase your chances of being involved in a mass transit accident. If you had a family member die in a mass transit event or you sustained injuries, our firm can represent you.

Motorcycle Accidents

PA 82 is an excellent road for getting out and doing a little weekend riding. However, it’s also a bustling roadway that increases your chances of being involved in an accident. Our team is ready to answer any questions, explore your options, conduct an investigation into the accident, and demand fair compensation for your injuries.

Nursing Home Abuse

Abuse of the elderly or disabled can be very tricky to prove, but our staff comprehensively understands Pennsylvania’s elder abuse laws. We’re ready to take on your case by representing you in court, gathering evidence, and helping ensure you get adequate compensation.

Accidents Involving Pedestrians

A pedestrian vs. vehicle usually results in severe injuries, and we’re ready to act like advocates throughout the litigation process. We’ll gather the evidence, negotiate with insurance carriers, calculate your projected losses, help you settle, or prepare for trial.

Premises Liability

Our staff consists of aggressive but resourceful accident attorneys who will speak to any witnesses and investigate the accident to lay the foundation for your case. Then, we’ll figure out who is liable, find sources for compensation, prepare any necessary documentation, and calculate your losses.

Defective Products

You could file a product liability lawsuit if an unsafe or dangerous product caused your injuries. Whether it’s poor design, manufacturing flaws, or a failure on the manufacturer’s part to disclose the issues that led to your injuries, we’ll negotiate for adequate compensation and build a solid case.

Slip and Fall Accidents

If you slip and fall and sustain injuries, you need a dedicated injury law firm working for you. We can investigate the accident, interview witnesses, obtain the necessary documentation, assess your losses, calculate fair compensation, and take your case to trial if necessary.

Spinal Cord Injuries

Spinal cord injuries can lead to life-changing complications, resulting in permanent injuries with massive medical bills. Our team will help assess your case, determine your financial needs, and negotiate a settlement for your losses.

Wrongful, Accidental, or Unintentional Death

Our compassionate and skilled staff can help you file a wrongful death claim. We’ll collect the evidence surrounding the accident, hire experts and investigators, and speak to any witnesses to build a strong case. We’ll also handle the negotiations and correspondence with the insurance companies or other parties, and we can represent you in court.

Time Limits for Filing a Personal Injury Claim in Pennsylvania

Once you get in an accident and sustain injuries, the clock starts ticking down the time you have to file a claim. While this time can fluctuate based on the type of lawsuit, Pennsylvania usually has a two-year statute of limitations that restricts how long you have to file if someone dies due to another person’s wrongful acts or negligence or if you want to pursue compensation for personal injuries. The two-year filing deadline includes auto accidents, medical malpractice, product liability, wrongful death, and other personal injury cases.

The deadline to file starts at the accident date. However, if you want to file your lawsuit against a state, city, or county government agency, you have six months to file a notice of intent to sue. Enlisting a personal injury attorney in Downingtown is one way to ensure you don’t go outside of this statute and have a chance at recouping compensation.

Serving Downingtown, Pennsylvania

Downingtown, PA, is a small borough located in Chester County, Pennsylvania, with just around 8,000 people. This town is located along the Lincoln Highway and is a hub for commercial vehicles to transport cargo. The city also initiated continuing and widespread renovations in the downtown district, particularly the streetscape, to make it friendlier for pedestrians to travel on.

Large national and regional businesses are based in Downingtown, and it’s home to many historical sites that draw thousands of tourists annually. You can walk or bike through the scenic parks and trails or stop by Independence Hall or visit the Liberty Bell. There are many family-friendly attractions, and you can easily spend the whole day exploring this historic town.

Contact Wilk Law, LLC

If you have been injured in an accident and are looking for experienced legal representation, contact our personal injury law firm today. In addition to Downingtown some of the locations our legal team serves includes West Chester, CoatesvillePhoenixville, Philadelphia, Pottstown, Kennett Square, Berwyn, Devon, Exton, Frazer, and more.