Resources

Category: Wrongful Death

Aug 21, 2018 - Articles

FIVE TIPS FOR OCEAN SAFETY

  When we think of summer, we typically think of the beach. For those of us who live in the greater Philadelphia area that means going to the Jersey Shore. However, a relaxing trip to the ocean shouldn’t cause you to relax when it comes to safety. Drowning is the number one accidental cause of death for children ages 1 -4 and the sixth leading cause of accidental death for all ages in the United States. Ten Americans die by drowning every day. And nearly 80 percent of people who drown in the United States are male. Listed below are five simple tips to help you be safe on your end-of-summer trip to the ocean. 1. Only Swim on a Beach Protected by a Lifeguard The chances of drowning on a beach without a lifeguard are almost five times higher than your chances on a beach with a lifeguard. You should swim between the flags positioned on either side of the lifeguard stand. The colors of the flags indicate both the nature of the surf that day and what activities are permitted in the water. A red or yellow flag typically means no swimming or restricted swimming. A green or orange flag means swimming is allowed. As you swim in the ocean, you need to be mindful that currents will move you along the shore. By continuing to swim within the boarder of the flags you can ensure that the lifeguard on duty is able to see you. 2. Never […]

Read More

Mar 21, 2018 - Wrongful Death

Do You Qualify to Receive Damages for the Wrongful Death of a Loved One?

Have you lost a loved one due to the conduct (negligence, recklessness, intentional acts) of another person or entity?  Pennsylvania law may give you the right to recover damages pursuant to a wrongful death claim, but it’s important to note that you must be a qualified beneficiary — in accordance with Pennsylvania statutory law — to be eligible to receive wrongful death damages. So, do you qualify? Before you can determine your status as a qualified beneficiary, it’s worth considering whether you have a wrongful death claim to begin with.  Let’s take a look at the fundamentals of a wrongful death claim. What is a Wrongful Death Claim? The regulations governing wrongful death claims are enshrined in section 8301 of the Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes.  Essentially, a wrongful death claim is an action brought to recover damages for the losses sustained by surviving beneficiaries of the deceased, so long as the death was caused by the wrongful acts or negligence of another. Suppose that someone’s parents die in an unexpected car accident. If the car accident did not involve anyone else (there were poor weather conditions and the car slipped off the rode and collided with a tree), the child of the deceased parents would not be entitled to recover damages for losses stemming from their death. Now, if the car accident was caused by another driver who was operating their vehicle while intoxicated, then the child of the deceased parents would likely have a wrongful death claim against the defendant. […]

Read More

Mar 14, 2018 - Wrongful Death

What is the Difference Between a Survival Action and a Wrongful Death Action?

In Pennsylvania, when a person has died due to the negligent, reckless, or intentional actions of another, their surviving family members may have the right to recover damages pursuant to a survival action.  Though many people are familiar with wrongful death actions (recovering damages that arise from the loss of a loved one), there tends to be quite a bit of confusion regarding survival actions and what makes them unique. How Survival Actions Differ From Wrongful Death Actions Survival actions are lawsuits brought by qualified family members of the deceased to recover damages that would have been owed to the deceased had they survived.  Survival actions are governed by section 8302 of the Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes, which states that all causes of action (or proceedings) will continue after the death of the plaintiff. What does this mean, exactly? Suppose that your father has passed away due to fatal injuries that they incurred in a motor vehicle accident.  The defendant was distracted at the time of the accident, and their erratic driving caused the collision and your father’s subsequently fatal injuries.  Your father did not die immediately, however.  In the aftermath of the accident, there were weeks of treatment, which ultimately failed. Now, your father would have had the right to sue and recover damages for the losses he sustained following the accident, and before they died.  He would have been entitled to sue for pain and suffering, medical expenses, lost wages, emotional distress, and more.  Section 8302 ensures that your […]

Read More

Mar 24, 2017 - Articles

Clear that Vehicle: the Dangers of Ice Missiles

As Allentown car accident attorneys, following this most recent snow storm, we’ve been very cognizant of snow and ice flying off the back of moving vehicles. A dash-cam video shows how this dangerous this driving hazard can be. Seeing this, you too must have thought, “That should be illegal.” In some states, it is. On Christmas Day, 2005, Christine Lambert and her family were traveling through Carbon County, Pennsylvania, to visit relatives, when an eight-inch chunk of ice flew off the roof of a tractor-trailer. The flying ice chuck, broke through the windshield of the Lamberts’ sport utility vehicle, killing Christine. The police never identified the driver of the tractor-trailer. In both Pennsylvania and New Jersey, allowing ice and snow to remain on the external surfaces of your car, truck or tractor trailer, can always lead to civil liability for causing injury to another vehicle, operator or pedestrian, but whether the police can issue you a ticket for failing to remove accumulated ice or snow from exposed surfaces on your vehicle, differs between the two states. In Pennsylvania, as a result of Christine Lambert’s death, legislation was passed to add criminal consequences to this behavior. See, 75 Pa.C.S. § 3720 Unfortunately, it only applies if the flying snow or ice actually injures someone or damages something. This would be like only issuing a speeding ticket, if the operator actually caused an accident. It doesn’t prospectively curb dangerous behavior. While this failure to remove ice and snow from the roof, trunk, […]

Read More

Feb 15, 2017 - Wrongful Death

Who Can Bring a Wrongful Death Claim?

A wrongful death claim is a serious matter that is brought by a person (or group) close to someone who has been killed by the intentional, negligent or reckless act of another.  If someone close to you has passed away in an untimely manner, we may be able to help.  Contact the attorneys at Drake, Hileman & Davis, PC today for a complete case evaluation. When is a Wrongful Death Claim Appropriate? A wrongful death claim is appropriate under many circumstances.  If a loved one has passed away due for any of the following reasons, then you may have a valid wrongful death claim. Negligence or Recklessness. If you’ve had a loved one killed by the negligent or reckless actions of another, then you may have standing to bring a wrongful death claim.  For example, you have a valid wrongful death claim where a loved one has passed away because of a car accident caused by an intoxicated driver. Intentional Acts. If a loved one has passed away due to the intentional acts of another you likely have a strong wrongful death claim.  For example, murder is the intentional taking of another’s life. Contact us today for a better understanding of when a wrongful death claim is appropriate. Who Can Bring a Wrongful Death Claim? A wrongful death claim is usually brought by the spouse or partner of the deceased.  However, a wrongful death claim may also be available to: Any minor living with the deceased (not their biological or […]

Read More

Feb 8, 2017 - Truck Accidents

Why is Drug Use of Particular Concern for Commercial Truck Drivers?

Multi-ton commercial trucks are difficult to operate in the best of circumstances.  Roadways are never the place to take unwarranted risks and this is especially true for commercial truck drivers.  Commercial trucks take longer to stop, they do not have the responsiveness that most vehicles do, and they often carry hazardous materials. Contact us immediately if you or a loved one has been injured or killed by a commercial truck driver. What Drugs are Commercial Truck Drivers Tested For? Federal laws require commercial truck drivers to be tested for the following types of drugs: Marijuana, Cocaine, Opiates (opium and codeine derivatives), Amphetamines and methamphetamines, and Phencyclidine (PCP). Different drugs can impact truck drivers very differently.  Some drugs cause users to become anxious, hyper-sensitive, irritable, aggressive and willing to take unnecessary risks.  Other types of drugs may depress a user’s ability to react, inhibit concentration and or cause a lack of focus. Drivers should remain sober during the operation of their trucks.  Contact Drake, Hileman & Davis, PC at 888-777-7098 today if you believe you were injured by a commercial truck driver who was operating his or her vehicle while under the influence of drugs or alcohol. What are the Consequences of a Failed Drug Test for Commercial Truck Drivers? According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, failing (or refusing) a drug test will have serious consequences for commercial truck drivers. Positive test results, or a refusal to submit to a test, requires the driver to be immediately removed from […]

Read More

Oct 29, 2016 - Articles

HOW DO YOU KNOW WHAT YOU DO NOT KNOW?

If you don’t know what an arbitration clause in a nursing home contract looks like, how do you negotiate about it? A man’s 100-year-old mother is found dead in her nursing home room. The suspect? Her 97-year-old roommate. The real cause of her death? Was it that the nursing home allowed her roommate to remain long after it was clear that she was a danger? So, you would expect the son would sue nursing home for that negligence in court. Except, he could not. When his mother entered the nursing home, he had signed the contract that contained a mandatory arbitration clause. The case would be decided by a private arbitrator. What is more, the arbitration firm had handled more than 400 arbitration hearings for the lawyers who represented the nursing home. Unsurprisingly, they ruled in favor of the nursing home, with a checkbox finding of no negligence. There were no written findings (probably not required by the contract of arbitration) and unlike a civil trial, there was no public record of anything. Which means when you are considering a nursing home, you would have no way of knowing that such events took place in the facility where your mother or father would reside. The fiction of contracts There are two problems with contracts like the one involved in this nursing home. Unless you hire an attorney to review the contract and advise you of any potential problems, like this arbitration clause, the average, intelligent educated person is ill-equipped to […]

Read More

Sep 30, 2016 - Wrongful Death

YOUNG MAN JAILED FOR CRASH THAT CLAIMS 3 LIVES

On behalf of Peter Hileman of Drake, Hileman & Davis, P.C. posted inWrongful Death on Friday, September 30, 2016. The lone survivor of a tragic crash that cost three passengers their lives has been jailed on charges of vehicular homicide, among others. Although he is alive, the young man is not in good condition. He appeared in court to face charges with visible burn wounds on his face gauze covering much of his head, as well as wearing a neck brace and using a walker to move about. At the time he was unrepresented, and was instructed to fill out the proper paperwork to be assigned a public defender. The youg man commented that he had been trying to obtain a lawyer to represent him, but that the process had all happened very fast, and he had been unable to find representation. In addition to the vehicular homicide charges, the driver is facing charges of firearm possession, marijuana possession, DUI, and accident involving death without a proper license. His bail has been set at $250,000. According to witnesses and court documents, the accident occurred around 1:30 in the morning on May 6, when the the young man in question struck three parked cars while speeding. One of the other vehicles that was struck reportedly burst into flames, and the driver was seen emerging from the vehicle and running across the road, then rolling around on the ground screaming. He was reportedly combative with police officers when they arrived on the […]

Read More

Aug 29, 2016 - Wrongful Death

THE WRONGFUL DEATH OF A ‘VIABLE’ FETUS

On behalf of Peter Hileman of Drake, Hileman & Davis, P.C. posted inWrongful Death on Monday, August 29, 2016. There is precedent in Pennsylvania for a lawsuit revolving around a stillborn fetus, as the unborn child’s death was said to be caused by a car accident. The case in question was Gullborg v. Rizzo. It established a precedent within the state for how wrongful death cases after car accidents can proceed. However, other cases have not always followed the precedent. In one case, a doctor was operating on a woman who was pregnant, and the child passed away. The family tried to sue under the same precedent and lost, as the case was said to be different. This shows just how tricky the laws can be when looking at unborn children. There is, however, at least the precedent that a family could seek damages for the death of a child, even though he or she had not yet been born, as long as the child was referred to as a “viable fetus” — as happened in the case noted above. A “viable fetus” is one that would be able to live without being in the womb. For example, many hospitals consider a woman to be at full term at 37 weeks, and that child could usually live, though it may not be born until 40 weeks or later. Essentially, the court was saying that the child’s potential to be born and grow up was enough to count it, in some […]

Read More

Jun 17, 2016 - Wrongful Death

COULD STRESS ACTUALLY KILL YOU?

On behalf of Peter Hileman of Drake, Hileman & Davis, P.C. posted in Wrongful Death on Friday, June 17, 2016. If you think that stress isn’t a big deal, it’s very important to consider what more and more medical experts have found: That stress itself can be deadly. Now, a small amount of daily stress is to be expected. However, when exposed to too much stress, for too long, it can cause serious problems and even take lives. For one thing, stress can cause the human body to deteriorate. Studies have even shown that illnesses like cancer are more likely in those who are stressed. Their bodies are falling apart, their immune systems aren’t working as well, and they’re more likely to get sick. This is true for things like the common cold, as well. A very high level of stress could lead to post-traumatic stress disorder, commonly known as PTSD. This has been tied to all sorts of issues, such as depression and even suicide. More the most part, though, the stress is quite literally on the heart. Your blood pressure can go up and your heart rate can increase. The body produces more adrenaline, or epinephrine. In some cases, this means that stress can be directly linked to lethal events, like heart attacks and strokes. It can also cause heart disease, which could in turn lead to these deadly conditions. Have you lost a loved one who was being unfairly and deliberately exposed to a very stressful situation? Do […]

Read More

Page 1 of 712345...Last »
nbta badge super lawyers badge avvo badge rising star badge Million Dollar Advocates Forum Peer Review Rated paaj champion badge NAOPIA
Drake, Hileman & Davis

Get Answers to Your Questions

Let's determine if you have a case.