If you slip and fall on someone’s property in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, the slip and fall personal injury law allows you to explore the option to receive compensation for your injuries. This makes sense, especially when the accident was clearly due to the property owner’s negligence.
Many slip and falls do not cause any injuries. However, in some cases, they may result in a head injury, back injury or broken bones. These slip and fall injuries can make it harder for you to get around and complete your daily tasks, activities and work routine.
Other injuries due to such incidents may also include but are not limited to broken wrists, arms, ankles, back and hip fractures.
Pennsylvania’s Statute of Limitations for Slip and Fall
The Pennsylvania statute of limitations puts a time constraint on pursuing a personal injury lawsuit.
If you sustain a slip and fall injury at someone else’s property due to their carelessness or negligence, you have 2 years from the date of the accident to file a lawsuit for compensation against them.
Slip and Fall Claim Process in Pennsylvania
At the Law Office of Jason R. Carpenter, we believe that you must understand the process of filing the claim. This process is outlined below.
- Getting Medical Care Immediately
In case you sustain an injury due to a slip and fall accident, you must seek immediate medical care. This can help prevent your injuries from getting worse and get you on the road to recovery. Moreover, getting early medical care can significantly help you document and demonstrate a link between your injury and the accident.
Additionally, medical records of treatment for your slip and fall injury are crucial evidence to prove the severity of your injuries and the losses you suffered financially as well.
- Getting Legal Assistance
A slip and fall accident in and of itself is not cause enough to file a lawsuit. The burden of proof will fall upon you as the victim to prove your slip and fall personal injury claim. If you had a slip and fall injury, you will need to prove that the accident and injuries resulted from the property owner’s negligent actions.
Pennsylvania obligates property operators and owners to maintain safe and hazard-free properties. Therefore, a seasoned premises liability attorney in Pennsylvania, such as one from the Law Office of Jason R. Carpenter, can help you establish that the slip and fall injury was due to the property owner’s negligence.
- Drafting Your Complaint
Once you have consulted with an attorney at the Law Office of Jason R. Carpenter about the potential claim, we may agree to accept your case based on legal merits. We will go through all settlement options, and if the other party or their insurance company does not cooperate, we will draft your civil complaint, including the details of the injury claim.
This complaint will contain a summary of the incident, including what happened and any related factual information. We will then file the Complaint to initiate your slip and fall lawsuit with a civil court. We will also serve the Defendant with the Complaint.
The Defendant is then required to submit a response within 30 days.
- The Defendant’s Answer
This is the Defendant’s response to your Complaint. In the Answer, the Defendant will admit or deny your allegations against them regarding the accident.
- The Discovery Phase
This is the next step after receiving an Answer from the Defendant. During the discovery phase, you and the Defendant will need to exchange evidence and information about the accident, your injuries, and more. This may include interrogatories, written discoveries, and depositions.
The interrogatories contain a written list of several questions that you and/or the Defendant must fill under oath. A deposition is where all involved parties, such as yourself, the Defendant, and relevant witnesses answer questions from the parties’ lawyers while under oath.
As your attorney, we may send requests to produce certain pieces of evidence relevant to your claim. That said, the discovery phase can last a couple of months to years, depending on your claim's complexity.
- Pre-Trial Motions
You and the Defendant can file a pre-trial motion to resolve your claim's issues before the trial commences. A Defendant may file a “motion of summary judgment” if their attorney believes that your lawsuit does not have sufficient factual material for a jury trial.
If the court grants this motion, your case may be dismissed. Therefore, you must hire an experienced personal injury attorney with expertise in slip and fall cases and who has argued these motions before.
In case both you and the Defendant decide to settle the lawsuit before trial, you will need adequate mediation and settlement expertise of a personal injury claim attorney. The attorneys of the Law office of Jason R. Carpenter can help negotiate the best settlement for your damages and losses.
- Jury Trial
If the mediation or settlement attempts fail, or either party denies the request for this phase, then your lawsuit will go to trial. We will present all the evidence and call witnesses to solidify the claim that the injuries you sustained due to slip and fall accidents were due to the negligence of the property owner.
However, you must remember that the Defendant’s attorney will do their best to produce witnesses and evidence to prove that it was not their client’s fault. Therefore, you need someone like the attorneys of the Law Office of Jason R. Carpenter to boost your chances of success at trial.
Receiving Your Compensation
If the jury gives a verdict in your favor, the liable party will be required to pay you the compensation amount awarded by the jury. Often, the Defendant’s insurance company will be the one actually footing the bill. The Defendant may also file an appeal against a decision that can prolong the case, and it may be a while before you receive the compensation awarded to you.
In case of a successful appeal by the Defendant, you may have to go through a new trial process.
The Law Office of Jason R. Carpenter Can Help
Getting compensation in a slip and fall accident can be a painstakingly long and complicated process. If you believe that you or a loved one’s injuries were due to the property owner’s negligence, you should consult with the Law Office of Jason R. Carpenter.
Contact us today and discuss your case with our experienced personal injury attorney.
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