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Dec 31, 2020 - Personal Injury

Factors That Could Lead to a Large Settlement

Our Allentown Personal Injury Lawyer Can Help You Get the Compensation You Deserve If you’ve been injured in an accident due to the fault of another, then Pennsylvania law may give you a right of action against the defendant. It’s important to understand, however, that successful cases don’t often go to trial — despite public perceptions.  The vast majority of disputes are resolved through settlement, thus avoiding the time, expense, and frustration associated with trial litigation. At Drake, Hileman & Davis, PC, our attorneys have decades of experience representing a wide range of injured plaintiffs in Pennsylvania.  In many cases, we’re able to secure a favorable result through early settlement.  If you’d like to speak to an experienced Allentown personal injury lawyer about your case, call us at 888-777-7098 or send us a message online to schedule a free and confidential consultation today. For now, you may be thinking: what actually influences the dollar value amount that the defendant is willing to settle for?  Let’s take a brief look at some of the unique factors that can lead to a larger settlement amount. Highly-Serious Injuries Injuries that are particularly severe — such as loss of limb, blindness, and traumatic brain injury, and other impairments — are likely to be associated with significant damages, as the impact can be quite drastic. The pain and suffering associated with a serious injury is likely to be severe, and there may be consequences for the plaintiff’s social and personal life.  Their spouse may leave […]

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Dec 29, 2020 - Dog Bite Injuries

Recovering Damages When You’ve Suffered a Dog Bite

Speak to an Allentown Dog Bite Lawyer Today If you’ve been seriously injured in a dog bite attack in Pennsylvania, then you may be wondering what you can do to recover damages.  After all, it may not be immediately clear whether you’re entitled to sue the owner — especially if the dog’s aggression surprised their owner. Fortunately, those who have been subject to a dog bite attack are almost guaranteed some form of compensation. Let’s take a closer look. Medical Expenses Covered Outright In Pennsylvania, when a plaintiff is injured in a dog bite (or another type of dog attack) scenario, they are entitled to sue the owner and recover damages to cover their medical expenses related to the dog attack.  This coverage is granted in accordance with “strict liability” principles.  In other words, it’s not necessary for you — the plaintiff — to prove that the owner was at fault.  All that’s necessary is that you were, in fact, attacked and injured by their dog.  This guarantees at least some form of compensation in most cases. The key limitation here, however, is that recovery is limited to medical expenses only.  If you’d like to recover for your other damages (i.e., pain and suffering, wage loss, etc.), then you’ll have to prove that the owner was negligent. Owner Negligence Owners can be found negligent if you show the following: that the owner knew about the dog’s vicious tendencies, and that the owner was negligent in failing to control or otherwise […]

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Dec 22, 2020 - Personal Injury

Recovering Damages for Loss of Earning Capacity

Bethlehem Back Injury Lawyers Working For You Some accidents can lead to debilitating injuries, which may influence the damages that you can pursue in the subsequent personal injury lawsuit.  Debilitating injuries — such as serious back issues — can not only lead to severe pain and suffering but may also lead to impairments that make it difficult (if not impossible) to return to the career trajectory that one had pre-injury. For example, if you’re a professional basketball player and you lose leg function in a car accident, then you will no longer have a future as a professional basketball player.  This could have significant impacts on your income and must be reflected in the lawsuit’s overall damages. Let’s take a closer look. Loss of Earning Capacity — Proving Impairment In Pennsylvania, “loss of earning capacity” damages track one’s actual, post-injury ability to earn in the future, and compares it to what they could have earned had they never been injured. This can be difficult to establish, and the plaintiff and defendant may disagree vehemently over the numbers.  For this reason, it’s important to secure valuable expert testimony, gather all necessary evidence (such as pay stubs), and evaluate all relevant factors: potential for promotions, projected pay for the career path in one’s industry, alternative career paths that may be available to you, average retirement age, the availability of bonuses, pension options, and more. For example, suppose that you injure your back in a car accident.  As a result, you can no […]

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Dec 15, 2020 - Slip and Fall

Inadequate Lighting and Slip and Fall Lawsuits

Hire an Experienced Allentown Slip and Fall Lawyer If you’ve been injured in a slip and fall accident due to inadequate lighting issues — perhaps at a retail store, or at an office — then Pennsylvania law may entitle you to sue and recover significant damages.  Let’s take a closer look at some of the issues typical of a slip and fall dispute, and more specifically when the dangerous condition involves inadequate lighting. Basics of a Slip and Fall Case Slip and fall cases fall under the umbrella of “premises liability” disputes.  In the premises liability and slip and fall context, an individual is entitled to sue and recover damages if they injure themselves on another’s property due to the existence of a dangerous condition. Dangerous conditions can include liquid spills and other hazards, such as poor and inadequate lighting.  For example, if you are walking on a tile surface, and there’s an obvious spill, but you don’t notice it due to dim lighting conditions, then you would be entitled to bring an action against the defendant if you suffer a slip and fall injury as a result. Evaluating the Surrounding Circumstances Establishing the liability of the property owner isn’t always straightforward, especially in a case where you are attempting to show that inadequate lighting was a dangerous condition.  You’ll not only have to show that the lighting was sufficiently poor to pose an unreasonable risk of injury, but you’ll also have to show that the defendant knew or should […]

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Dec 8, 2020 - Easton Car Accident Lawyer

Who Can You Sue in a Truck Accident Dispute?

Let Our Easton Accident Attorney Help If you’ve been injured in a truck accident, then Pennsylvania law may entitle you to sue and recover damages as compensation — but who, exactly, are you entitled to sue?  It may seem obvious to sue the driver, but there are potentially other defendants who are contributed to the accident and are therefore responsible for your injuries. Suing multiple defendants is an excellent strategy for when a single defendant might not have the financial wherewithal (or insurance coverage) necessary to pay out your damages in full.  In those circumstances, it’s important to explore other defendants who have the resources necessary to cover your losses. Let’s take a closer look. The Truck Driver If the truck driver was negligent, reckless, or even intentionally caused the accident, then you may sue them directly. Truck drivers may have personal insurance coverage that can cover their losses, but it’s worth noting that truck accidents tend to be more severe than other motor vehicle accidents — as such, your damages may be significant, and may not be properly covered by a cheap insurance policy. The Trucking Company If the truck driver was employed and was acting within the course and scope of their employment, at the time of the accident, then you may have a right of action against their employer — the trucking company.  You need not prove that the trucking company was negligent to impose liability.  This is known as the doctrine of vicarious liability — an […]

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Dec 1, 2020 - Doylestown Car Accident Lawyer

Are You Entitled to Damages if You Weren’t Wearing a Seatbelt?

Get Help From a Knowledgeable Doylestown Accident Lawyer If you’ve been harmed in a motor vehicle accident due to the fault of another, then you may have a right to sue the defendant and secure compensation.  But what initially appears — on the surface — to be a straightforward case may be complicated by certain facts. What happens if you weren’t wearing a seatbelt at the time of the accident?  It is almost certainly a form of negligence on your part — but does it prevent you from suing the defendant and recovering damages? Not necessarily! Let’s take a closer look. Causal Link In order for the defendant to show that your negligence (in failing to wear a seatbelt) is associated with your injuries, they’ll have to establish a causal link.  Let’s use an example to clarify how this works. Suppose that you are harmed in a car accident where you were not wearing a seatbelt.  The thing is, you suffered a unique injury profile — you did not suffer any serious injuries from being thrown about the cabin.  Instead, the force of the impact caused your legs to fracture. Under these circumstances, one could argue that the failure to use a seatbelt was irrelevant with respect to the injury — it would have occurred regardless.  As such, even if you were negligent in failing to wear a seatbelt, that negligence is not “causally linked” to the injury claim. Contributory Fault In Pennsylvania, even if your failure to wear a […]

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Nov 30, 2020 - Allentown Car Accident Lawyer

Winter Driving Safety Tips

According to the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), over 70 percent of the nation’s roads are located in snowy regions that receive more than five inches of average snowfall every year. Nearly 70 percent of the U.S. population lives in these snowy regions. Snow and ice reduce pavement friction, compromise vehicle maneuverability, reduce roadway capacity, and increase the risk of accidents. Average speeds on arterial roads decline by 30 to 40 percent on snowy or slushy pavement. Freeway speeds are reduced by three to 13 percent in light snow and by five to 40 percent in heavy snow. Heavy snow and sleet can also reduce visibility, as lanes and roadways are obstructed by snow accumulation. 24 percent of weather-related vehicle crashes occur on snowy, slushy, or icy pavement and 15 percent happen during snowfall or sleet every year. Over 1,300 people are killed and more than 116,800 people are injured in vehicle crashes on snowy, slushy, or icy pavement each year.  Even more alarming, nearly 900 people are killed and nearly 76,000 people are injured in vehicle crashes during snowfall or sleet every year. Snow and ice increase road maintenance costs, and state and local agencies spend more than 2.3 billion dollars on snow and ice control operations annually. This doesn’t even account for the millions of dollars spent to repair infrastructure damage caused by snow and ice. If you have suffered a personal injury in an accident caused by wintery conditions, contact an Allentown car accident lawyer at Drake, Hileman […]

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Nov 25, 2020 - Articles

A Season of Thankfulness in a Time of Pandemic

    Since celebrating that first Thanksgiving in 1621, our Nation has experienced many adversities and yet we have continued to find ways and reasons to be thankful. It is easy to be grateful when things are going our way. It is much harder, when life seems to be going badly. According to Dr. Robert Emmons, a professor of psychology at the University of California, not only is a grateful attitude helpful in times of adversity, it is essential. “In the face of demoralization, gratitude has the power to energize. In the face of brokenness, gratitude has the power to heal. In the face of despair, gratitude has the power to bring hope. In other words, gratitude can help us cope in hard times.” Professor Emmons has offered several tips to help cultivate a grateful heart: 1)  Remember the bad, then look to see where you are now; 2)  Confront your own mortality, in order to reevaluate what is really important in life; 3)  Realize the power you have to transform an obstacle into an opportunity; 4)  Be grateful for that which is often overlooked; and 5)  Gratitude is a choice, regardless of one’s situation or circumstances. Emmons went on to state that it is vital to make a distinction between feeling grateful and being grateful. We can’t will ourselves to feel grateful, however, being grateful is a choice. Gratitude can provide a perspective from which we can view life in its entirety and not be overwhelmed by temporary circumstances.  […]

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Nov 23, 2020 - Car Accidents

What is No-Fault Insurance?

Personal injury protection (PIP), also known as “no-fault insurance” may help pay for medical bills, hospital bills, and costs not covered by your health insurance company If you’ve been injured in an auto accident. PIP covers medical expenses no matter who is at fault. It can often include lost wages as well. Depending on the state where you live, PIP may be available as insurance coverage or as a required policy add-on. This coverage could help even if you’re not in your car. So, for example, if you’re injured by a car while walking down the sidewalk or riding your bike, or even riding in someone else’s car, PIP may have you covered up to the limits you choose, depending on the state. PIP coverage is considered a first-party benefit; i.e., you receive compensation directly from your own insurance company if you are involved in a car accident. In contrast, third-party benefits are those that are paid to injured parties by the other driver’s insurance company. If you have suffered a personal injury in an accident, contact an Easton accident attorney at Drake, Hileman & Davis to see what kind of compensation you are entitled to. Which States Are PIP/No-Fault Insurance States? States come in three varieties: those states where PIP is required, those states where PIP is offered but not required, and those states where PIP is not available. The states where PIP is required include: Arkansas Delaware Florida Hawaii Kansas Kentucky Maryland Massachusetts Michigan Minnesota New Jersey New […]

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Nov 16, 2020 - Personal Injury

Historically Large Catastrophic Injury Verdicts

Injury verdicts can result in astronomical money awards, especially when a person has suffered severe and life-altering injury and the company responsible acted particularly reprehensible and appears at trial to be arrogant and unsympathetic. If you have suffered a personal injury, contact a Doylestown personal injury attorney at Drake, Hileman & Davis to see what kind of compensation you are entitled to. Historically Large Verdicts Some of the largest verdicts in history include: $150 Billion. In a nearly unbelievable case of child torture, an eight-year-old boy was sexually assaulted by a teenager, doused in gasoline, and set on fire. Although the boy initially survived, 99% of his body was covered in burns. He died shortly thereafter from skin cancer that doctors believed was connected to the fire. A sympathetic jury awarded the boy’s family $150 billion in a civil wrongful death lawsuit, which was, unfortunately, a symbolic victory because of the defendant’s lack of resources. $145 Billion. In 2000, a jury awarded $144.8 billion to a class of cigarette consumers who had brought personal injury claims against Philip Morris, R.J. Reynolds, and several other cigarette manufacturers. The Florida Supreme Court upheld a decision that threw out the judgment and voided what had been the largest punitive award by a jury in U.S. history, saying the jury award was “excessive as a matter of law.” $28 Billion. A Los Angeles jury handed down a $28 billion award in favor of Betsy Bullock, a lifelong smoker who had sued R.J. Reynolds after […]

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