A Philadelphia Dangerous Premises Lawyer
Were You In A Dangerous Premises Accident?
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A visit to someone else’s property or business should always be a positive and completely safe experience. Unfortunately, when the owners and operators of stores, restaurants, playgrounds, and public facilities don’t maintain their properties to reasonably safe standards guests can land in an accident and end up badly hurt.
When proprietors invite the public into their establishments, they can’t just be concerned with how much money they make off of you. They must also monitor every inch of their businesses for hazards that could make customers slip, or trip, or even be put at higher risk to become a victim of a crime.
If you are ever on someone else’s property and are injured due to the owner’s negligence, talk to a local attorney to protect you while you’re injured and at your most vulnerable. Edith Pearce is the founder of Philadelphia’s The Pearce Law Firm, P.C. She has spent her career fighting for victims who are hurting and in need of real help after a tragic accident. Contact Edith Pearce and The Pearce Law Firm P.C. for a free and confidential consultation on your case.
Responsibility of Philadelphia Property Owners In Accidents
Property owners, landlords, and property managers have an obligation to keep their premises safe and to show a “duty of care” to their customers. This means they must repair or clean-up obstacles in their stores or on their grounds in a reasonable amount of time so you have a safe path through their property.
If they fail to do so, they may have been negligent in their duties and may be liable for the damages, losses, and injuries they’ve caused. This falls under the legal concept of “premises liability.” Owners can be on the hook for every cost of your recovery if, for example, you fall and break a hip, or if exposed wiring gives you a nasty shock. Hospital bills and other expenses can all be placed at the feet of an owner.
Common Premises Liability Cases
The Pearce Law Firm, P.C. has handled many cases of premises liability around Philadelphia and South Jersey. They’ve taken on major corporations and locally owned businesses and earned much-needed compensation for suffering victims. They’ve stood by victims until they regain a normal life and are back on solid financial footing.
Victims can be embarrassed by slipping and taking a tumble or by getting hurt some other way in public, but that’s ridiculous. Victims should know that they are by no means alone when they take a fall or get hurt.
Aging.com finds that there are more than 2.8 million fall injuries treated in emergency departments annually. The number includes people of all ages. Getting help with these mishaps can be vitally important because the average cost of a recovery from a fall is $30,000.
Of course, slip-and-falls and trip-and-falls are just a couple of the dangers you can find when you enter a public place like a supermarket or an apartment building.
Accidents or injuries resulting from dangerous premises conditions can take many forms, including:
- Slip and Fall
- Construction Site Accidents
- Attacks, Assault, or Other Security Problems
- Snow and Ice Injuries
- Injuries in Public Places (Malls, Stores, Restaurants, Schools, Government Buildings)
- Injuries on Private Property
- Elevator Accidents
- Swimming Pool Accidents
- Playground Accidents
- Day Care Accidents
- Recreational Accidents/Theme Parks/Amusement Parks
- Gunshot Injuries
Compensation in a Premises Liability and Slip-And-Fall Cases
A claim for damages can ask for every cost associated with an injury that happens on someone’s property. The demands are essential to the wellbeing of the victim because present-day medical care may just be the tip of the iceberg for those hurt. There may be more surgeries, physical therapy, and medical equipment needed down the road. It’s important that all of this be factored into any settlement offered by an insurance company.
The Damages that an accident victim and the victim’s family are entitled to recover may include: hospital and medical expenses; past and future lost earnings; past and future permanent physical disability, such as a limp, scars, loss of a limb; emotional distress, such as depression and anxiety; grief and emotional suffering caused by the death of a loved one; loss of love and companionship caused by the death of a loved one; damage or destruction of property; physical pain and suffering; loss of enjoyment of life.
To protect your legal rights in a dangerous premises claim, you should consult an accident injury law firm with experience in these matters as soon as possible. Within the first week, important physical evidence can be lost, and witnesses may become hard to find.
Contact a Philadelphia Premises Liability Lawyer
Edith Pearce is an experienced Pennsylvania accident lawyer. Her years in the insurance industry have taught her how to leverage her “insider” industry information to get full and fair compensation for her clients. Her firm will thoroughly investigate your dangerous premises claim and work diligently to arrive at a timely settlement or proceed to trial in order to obtain the compensation you’ll need in recovery.
The Pearce Law Firm P.C., uses a combination of aggressive discovery, site visits, witness interviews, a close examination of medical records, private investigators and assistance of medical and other experts to provide clients with state-of-the-art legal representation.
If you or someone you know has been injured in a premises liability accident in Philadelphia or anywhere in Pennsylvania and New Jersey, please CONTACT US for a FREE ACCIDENT CONSULTATION.
We are dedicated to protecting your rights and obtaining full and fair compensation for you.
No Recovery/No Fee/ Contingent Fee Cases Accepted
Philadelphia Dangerous City Property
Everyone likes to feel safe in her or his own community. City, county, and state governments are responsible for enforcing laws providing for public safety. These include laws requiring business and property owners to maintain their sidewalks, entryways, and buildings according to specific standards. Owners should also utilize proper signage to alert the public of dangerous situations such as slippery floors or any other hazards. Hazardous outdoor property should also be appropriately fenced with warning signs as well.
When property owners fail to comply with these laws and you are injured due to their negligence, you have the right to seek compensation through a civil suit filed against the owner.
However, when the property owner is the government, especially the city; do the same rules apply?
Sovereign Immunity Or Governmental Immunity
Sovereign immunity was originally a doctrine in England that held that the king could do no wrong. Whereas we have no king today, the principle applies to the Federal government, states, local municipalities (Cities), and their employees. Although the term sovereign immunity is generally used to refer to these types of lawsuits against any type of governmental entity, Pennsylvania has two specific statutes: the Sovereign Immunity Act (applying to the state of Pennsylvania) and the Political Subdivision Tort Claims Act (applying to municipalities such as cities).
Special Notice within 6 months is required.
These laws can be very tricky to navigate. First, although most personal injury lawsuits can be brought within two years of the accident, notice to a City or other government entity requires a special notice of the injury to the City or governmental entity within 6 months of the cause of action.
Can you sue the City or Government if they have immunity? The Exceptions to Governmental Immunity:
Does this mean the government is above the law when you are injured on state or city property? Not completely. Pennsylvania law provides several exceptions to government immunity:
- Motor vehicle exception
- Care, custody, control of personal property exception;
- Real property exception
- Trees, traffic signals or controls, and street lighting exception
- Utility service facilities exception
- Care, custody, and control of animals
It is important to have an experienced attorney determine whether your case fits within one of the exceptions to the City or government claiming immunity. As with any injury due to the negligence of a third party, your first step, if you have been injured on government property should be to contact The Pearce Law Firm, P.C. to determine your rights and options for compensation for your injuries and losses. We understand the dynamics of a lawsuit against the Commonwealth or any municipality therein.
There are limitations set forth in the law on the amount you may seek for compensation. For governmental immunity against a City, damages are capped at $500,000.
Additionally, you may only seek a claim for pain and suffering for permanent loss of bodily function, permanent disfigurement, or permanent dismemberment where medical expenses exceed the sum of $1,500.
Contact The Pearce Law Firm, P.C. today for a free initial consultation. Our experience and understanding of the law will help you receive the maximum compensation for your injuries.
Frequently Asked Questions
What should I do after an accident on someone’s property?
If you are injured in an accident on someone’s premises, it is important to preserve the evidence as soon as possible. Take a picture of where the accident happened because the dangerous conditions that caused the accident can easily be cleaned up or repaired. Make detailed notes, especially about any conditions that won’t clearly show in the pictures. Make a written incident report to someone in charge. Talk to witnesses and even helpful employees who saw your accident or saw the obstacle that caused it. Get their contact information.
How long do I have to file a personal injury claim in Pennsylvania?
2 Years. Victims are granted up to two years from the date of the accident to bring a civil lawsuit against an owner or operator that was liable for their injury. It’s always best to proceed with your claim as soon as you’re ready. An attorney working for your benefit will have an easier time gathering evidence, finding witnesses, and requesting documents in the days and weeks directly after an accident. When dealing with big corporations like a grocery store chain, it’s always best to get a claim on their desks as soon as possible because it can take their insurance agents longer than usual to respond.
What if I feel my accident was partly my fault?
You can still get compensation from property owners after a fall even if you share some of the blame for your accident. Pennsylvania is a comparative negligence state. That means you can share the blame with the business proprietor. You might be assigned 25% of the fault for ignoring a wet floor sign, but the owner may be forced to accept 75% of the blame. That would mean you would receive compensation with your 25% subtracted from the award. As long as you weren’t more than 50% responsible you can expect compensation.
Learn more on How to Prevent Accidents at Home or read more on Amazon Driver Slips on Ice: What to Do After a Slip and Fall.