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May 4, 2017

TBIs Can Be Caused by a Variety of Accidents

TBI Attorneys in PA

Traumatic brain injuries,1 or TBIS, are among the most serious kinds of injuries a person can sustain. They can occur when you hit your head on another object with sufficient force or even when your head snaps back and forth on your neck. The most common form of TBI is known as a concussion, and more severe brain injuries often leave victims with cognitive and physical disabilities that can last a lifetime. Additionally, even repetitive mild TBIs have been linked to serious issues like Parkinson’s disease and early-onset Alzheimer’s disease.

Many TBIs are the result of accidents caused by the negligence of other people, which means that victims are entitled to compensation for their losses. Here are some of the more common accidents that have the potential to leave individuals with brain injuries.

Car Accidents

People are involved in car accidents on a daily basis in the Philadelphia area. Even in the best of circumstances, a car wreck can easily involve forces that cause a vehicle occupant to hit his or her head on the dashboard, windshield or other surfaces. In more serious cases, victims are thrown through windshields and end up hitting the ground or another vehicle.

Slip and Falls

Most people think of slip and falls as minor accidents that cause only minor injuries like bumps and bruises. While it is certainly true that most slip and fall victims can walk away from their accidents, if they happen in a certain way, victims can end up hitting their heads on the ground or another object as they fall.

Bicycle Accidents

Bicyclists are among the most vulnerable people on the road. In accidents, they can easily be thrown from their vehicles and end up hitting their heads on the ground, cars, or even nearby objects like buildings or trees. Furthermore, TBIs can occur even when bicycle accident victims are wearing helmets and other safety gear.

Workplace Injuries

Many TBIs occur at work. While it may seem obvious that people who work in high-risk industries, such as construction or manufacturing, are at risk for brain injuries, you should keep in mind that even people who work behind a desk can hit their heads while they are at work. Importantly, while many workplace injuries limit people to workers’ compensation2 claims, there are plenty of circumstances under which a workplace injury gives rise to a personal injury claim. Some of the more common include the following:

  • Accidents caused by third-party contractors
  • Accidents caused by defective workplace tools
  • Accidents caused by the intentional conduct of an employer

Call a Philadelphia Personal Injury Attorney Today to Discuss Your Case

If you have sustained a traumatic brain injury in an accident caused by the negligence of another person, you should contact a lawyer as soon as possible. At The Levin Firm, we are committed to providing brain injury victims with effective and solution-oriented legal representation. To schedule a free consultation with one of our lawyers, call our office today at 215-285-5183 or contact us online.

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April 14, 2017

Getting the Most Out Of Your Pennsylvania Personal Injury Case

Personal Injury Lawyers in PA

Pennsylvania law1 entitles people who are hurt in accidents that were caused by someone else’s negligence to compensation for the losses they sustain. Victims can recover for both their economic and non-economic losses, and some examples of the kinds of damages that are pursued in a typical personal injury2 case include medical expenses, property damage, physical and emotional pain and suffering, lost income, and loss of quality of life.

Victims understandably want to obtain the largest settlement or award possible after an accident. Generally speaking, maximizing compensation after an injury-causing accident involves keeping detailed records about the way in which your injuries have affected you and making sure that your losses are documented and verified by third parties. Here are some of the specific things that you can do to ensure that you receive the full value of your claim.

Keep Notes

After an accident, you should keep detailed notes about the way in which your injuries affect you. Some examples of the kinds of issues of which you should make note include the following:

  • Pain
  • An inability to perform certain tasks
  • Sleep disturbances
  • Feelings of anxiety or depression
  • Activities or events that you forgo because of your injuries

See a Physician

You should always see a doctor after you are hurt in an accident, even if you do not believe that your injuries are particularly severe. This will serve two purposes; first, it will ensure that your injuries are accurately identified and that you start treatment as soon as possible. Second, it will result in the creation of a medical record that can be used as evidence when establishing damages.

Attend All Appointments and Do the Recommended Treatments

Many accident victims are prescribed physical therapy or other ongoing treatment for pain management. It is essential for you to attend all of these appointments, regardless of whether you think they are helping or necessary. Failure to do so may make it possible for the insurance company or at-fault party to argue that your injuries are not as severe as you claim they are.

Do Not Post on Social Media

If you are an active social media user, it may be a good idea to refrain from posting while your case is pending. Most of us who use social media like to present an idealized version of our lives, and pictures or posts showing you active and happy may make it seem like you are not as hurt as you claim to be. On the other hand, it is not advisable to start deleting old posts as it may give the impression that you are trying to destroy evidence.

Call a Philadelphia Personal Injury Lawyer Today to Schedule a Free Case Evaluation

If you have been hurt in an accident caused by the negligence of others, you should contact a lawyer as soon as possible. To schedule a free consultation with one of our Philadelphia personal injury attorneys, call the Levin Firm today at 215-825-5183 or send us an email through our online contact form.

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March 17, 2017

How to Maximize a Personal Injury Award or Settlement

Personal Injury Lawyer in PA

Motor vehicle accidents can happen anywhere, and Philadelphia, with its many busy roadways and highways, is no exception. Car wrecks can be very traumatizing experiences, and legal concerns are probably the last thing on your mind following involvement in a serious car crash.

Insurance companies, like most big businesses, are interested in lining their own pockets. Their goal in a car accident case is to settle the case as quickly (and as cheaply) as possible. Our experienced Philadelphia personal injury attorneys can help you by negotiating with the insurance company on your behalf and assisting you with obtaining a favorable settlement offer.

If the insurance company refuses to settle your case fairly, we are not afraid to litigate your case and take it to trial. What follows are some simple steps you can take to maximize the value of your case, including the amount of your settlement, arbitration award, or jury verdict.

Visit a Hospital Emergency Room or Urgent Care Facility Immediately After the Accident

Injured victims of Philadelphia car accidents should immediately seek same-day treatment at a local hospital emergency room or urgent care facility. This is true even when no symptoms are immediately apparent. Same-day treatment is necessary for the following reasons:

  • Symptoms oftentimes do not manifest themselves until well after the accident (e.g., days or weeks), and it is better to be safe than sorry.
  • Failing to seek same-day emergency medical treatment sends a message to insurance adjusters that the accident victim was not all that seriously injured and/or was not making medical treatment a top priority following the collision.

It is also important that car accident victims be complete and accurate when describing their pain and symptoms (without overstating their cases) – and that they follow through with all of the emergency room physician’s treatment recommendations. This may include doing one or more of the following:

  • Following up with a primary care physician or specialist for subsequent treatment
  • Beginning a physical therapy regimen at a separate facility
  • Seeking follow-up care and treatment at another facility

Seek Medical Treatment for Injuries and Concentrate on Getting Better

Following a same-day hospital emergency room or urgent care visit, it is important to start treatment with a health care provider immediately for injuries sustained in the accident. Large gaps in treatment, long delays in treatment, and missed appointments (or late arrivals) are red flags for insurance adjusters. Rightly or wrongly, gaps in medical treatment or physical therapy send a signal to the insurance company that a car accident victim is not as seriously injured as he or she claims.

Document How Your Injuries Have Affected You

While proving losses like lost income and medical expenses is fairly straightforward, it is often more difficult to establish the non-economic damages accident victims sustain. Consequently, it is important for victims to keep detailed notes about the way in which their injuries have affected them. Make note of pain that you experience, activities that you forgo because of your injuries, any problems you have sleeping, and feelings of depression1 or anxiety that you have.

Seek Legal Representation

An experienced Philadelphia personal injury lawyer will be able to do the following:

  • Recommend further treatment options
  • Obtain all medical records and bills from hospitals, treating physicians, and physical therapy facilities
  • Obtain information from insurance companies about their available policy limits
  • Submit a settlement demand to the insurance company
  • Negotiate with insurance adjusters to obtain a fair settlement of the case
  • File a lawsuit and litigate the case in the court system, if necessary
  • Take the case to trial or explore alternative dispute resolution options

It is important to keep in mind that establishing the value of a car accident case is a complicated matter and often requires determining how your injuries will affect in the months and years that follow. The assistance of an attorney will ensure that all of your injuries are adequately compensated and that you receive the settlement or award that you deserve.

Contact a Philadelphia Personal Injury Attorney Today to Discuss Your Case

Personal injuries sustained as a result of someone else’s negligence2 can be very serious and can affect every aspect of a person’s life – including their health, their finances, and their quality of life.

An experienced Philadelphia personal injury lawyer will have the necessary legal knowledge and expertise to negotiate with insurance adjusters on your behalf and help you to obtain a fair resolution to your case.

To schedule a free consultation with one of the experienced Philadelphia personal injury attorneys at The Levin Firm, call us today at 215-825-518 or contact us online.

1 https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/topics/depression/index.shtml

2 https://www.law.cornell.edu/wex/negligence

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March 6, 2017

How a Personal Injury Lawyer Can Help You

Personal Injury Lawyer in PA

The days and weeks immediately following a serious injury-causing accident can be stressful and confusing. Many victims are dealing with mounting medical expenses, uncertainty about when they will be able to return to work, and significant physical and emotional pain and suffering.

Under these circumstances, the thought of taking steps to recover compensation from the person or business that caused you injuries may seem overwhelming. Fortunately, there is help available, and injured victims can retain an attorney from the Levin Firm without having to pay anything up front. In fact, we do not collect legal fees from our personal injury1 clients at all if we do not recover compensation on their behalf.

Here are some of the ways that retaining one of the PI lawyers of the Levin Firm can help you after you are hurt in an accident.

A Personal Injury Lawyer will Evaluate Your Claim

Not every injury-causing accident result in a legal claim. If you caused your own accident or it was unavoidable, chances are you will not be able to recover compensation from anyone else. For example, if you are hurt in a car or truck accident that occurred because you lost control of your vehicle during a snow storm, you probably will not be able to file a claim against another person.

When you first meet with an attorney, he or she will thoroughly analyze the way in which your accident occurred and let you know whether you have a claim to pursue.

An Attorney Will Investigate Your Case

In some cases, it may be necessary to conduct an investigation to uncover evidence that another person or party was negligent2 and caused your accident. Some of the kinds of evidence that may be relevant to a personal injury case include the following:

  • Video surveillance footage
  • Vehicle maintenance reports
  • Eyewitness accounts
  • Medical records
  • Cell phone records
  • Expert opinion
  • Pictures of the scene of the accident

Your lawyer will evaluate your case and determine whether your case warrants additional investigation. If so, he or she will collect evidence in support of your case and may use certain legal mechanisms to compel the production of evidence.

The Representation of a Lawyer will Protect Your Rights

As an accident victim, it is important to understand that you can say or do things that may hurt your ability to recover compensation for your injuries. In fact, insurance companies that are representing at –fault parties have been known to engage in tactics that are designed to get victims to admit partial or even full liability for an accident without even realizing it. When you have retained an attorney, however, your lawyer will communicate with the insurance company for you, ensuring that you receive the full and fair value of your claim.

Your Lawyer Will Attempt to Negotiate a Settlement

Most personal injury cases do not go to trial. When liability is conceded, what generally happens is the at-fault party’s insurance and the victim comes to a settlement agreement in which the insurer pays for the victim’s losses in return for the victim giving up his or her right to bring a claim.

While this process may sound simple, in reality, it is quite complicated. In order to come to a reasonable settlement amount, victims need to be aware of how much their case is worth. While it is simple to look at a medical bill and claim and demand compensation for the amount of the bill, what about calculating future medical expenses? Likewise, placing a value on a person’s physical and emotional pain and suffering requires an understanding of how noneconomic damages are calculated. Because of these and other issues, it is critical for victims who are involved in settlement negotiations to retain a skilled and experienced personal injury attorney.

An Attorney Will Represent You In Court

While most cases settle, some do not, requiring victims to go to court in order to get the compensation they deserve. If this occurs in your case, your attorney will file a lawsuit on your behalf and represent you in any proceedings that may occur.

Call the Levin Firm to Speak with a Philadelphia Personal Injury Attorney Today

If you have been hurt in an accident, you should make sure that your rights are fully protected by retaining an experienced personal injury attorney as soon as possible. To discuss your case with a Philadelphia PI lawyer, call the Levin Firm today at 215-825-5183 or contact us online.

1 http://www.americanbar.org/groups/public_education/resources/law_issues_for_consumers/injury.html

2 https://www.law.cornell.edu/wex/negligence

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February 27, 2017

What Are Some Common Personal Injuries?

Personal Injury Lawyers in PA

At the heart of every personal injury claim is – as you can probably guess – an injury suffered by the person filing the claim. There are many types of accidents that can result in personal injuries and the type of injury a victim sustains often depends on the accident that occurred. Some accidents that can lead to a personal injury claim include the following:

The losses that may be recovered in a particular personal injury case will depend on the injury sustained, the effects of that injury on the victim’s life, and the treatment required for the injury. The following are some examples of personal injuries that are commonly at issue in a lawsuit.

Head and Brain Injuries

Many accidents can result in trauma to the head and many parts of the head can be injured. One of the more common injuries to this part of the body is a traumatic brain injury (TBI). A TBI can occur with even a slight jolt or bump on the head. This type of injury can be mild, which is often in the form of a concussion. Even concussions require medical attention, however, as complications can arise and proper treatment is needed to lower the risk of further injury and effects. In other situations, TBIs can be moderate or severe1 and can cause a long-lasting coma and/or permanent impairments for victims.

Additionally, the skull itself can be fractured if an impact is great enough. In serious cases, part of the skull may fracture off and may enter the brain, causing serious damage. Other parts of the head and face that may be fractured or damaged include the nose, cheekbones, jaw, eyes, and teeth. All of these injuries can require costly treatment and extensive recovery time.

Back and Spine Injuries

The back has many parts that may be injured, including muscles, bones, joints, and the spinal cord, which is integral in facilitating basic movement and functioning. Many types of back injuries can cause excruciating pain and can substantially limit movement. Some back injury victims may hardly be able to walk and cannot lift anything – even lighter items. Back injuries often require extensive physical therapy or even surgery for a victim to recover.

If the spinal cord is damaged, the impairments for a victim may be severe and even permanent. Some spinal cord injuries2 can result in paralysis of the body below the injured point, including loss of sensory abilities. This means that many spinal cord injury victims may temporarily or permanently lose their ability to walk or may lose control over important bodily functions.

Broken Bones and Soft Tissue Injuries

Even if an injury does not result in permanent disability, it can still cause serious pain and disruption to a victim’s life. Both broken bones and soft tissue injuries can do just that. First, damage to any bone, muscle, tendon, or ligament can be immediately painful and the pain can persist for an extended period of time. In addition, any type of fracture, sprain, or strain can inhibit movement and abilities, often keeping a person from work and many everyday activities.

Some of these injuries can be even more serious, however, including compound fractures3 and ligaments or tendons that are completely torn. These injuries often require surgery and sometimes multiple procedures. Victims often must undergo extensive physical therapy to even be able to bear weight on an affected leg or two use an affected arm. Fractures to the pelvis can be particularly difficult to recover from and often require extended hospitalization.

Simply because a personal injury is not considered to be catastrophic does not mean that a victim will not incur huge losses. The above are, of course, only a few of the many personal injuries that our clients have had and from which we have helped them recover financially.

Contact a Philadelphia Personal Injury Lawyer to Discuss Your Rights Today

Every personal injury case will have its own legal issues depending on the type of accident that happened and the type of injuries that you suffered. At The Levin Firm in Philadelphia, we regularly represent clients with a wide variety of injuries – ranging from sprains or strains to disabling spinal cord injuries.

You always want to ensure you are represented by an attorney who fully understands the effects of your injuries and who has the resources to pursue maximum compensation in your case. Please do not hesitate to call Philadelphia personal injury attorney Gabriel Levin at 215-825-5183 for a free consultation today.

1https://www.cdc.gov/traumaticbraininjury/severe.html

2https://medlineplus.gov/spinalcordinjuries.html

3http://orthoinfo.aaos.org/topic.cfm?topic=A00582

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February 22, 2017

Injuries at the Gym

Personal Injury Lawyers in PA

With the start of a new year, many of us make a resolution to take control of our health by losing weight and getting fit. This often involves going to a gym regularly to work out on your own, have sessions with a personal trainer, or attend an exercise class. While going to the gym should be a positive thing, the experience can turn sour quickly if you sustain an injury.

Some gym injuries are due to mistakes on your own part, such as using too much weight for your abilities or not properly performing an exercise. Sometimes, injuries can happen if you jump into an intense workout program too quickly. In these cases, you are likely at fault for your own injuries and you likely have few legal rights to compensation.

On the other hand, many people may be injured at the gym because of negligence1 on the part of another party, such as the gym owner, management, or staff. In these cases, you likely have the legal right to file a personal injury claim against the negligent party to recover for your medical bills and other losses. These claims can involve different types of legal theories and the following is some additional information regarding types of claims after a gym injury.

Premises Liability

Like any private business or public space, the owner of a gym has the legal duty to make sure the premises are in reasonably safe condition for people who attend. When the premises of a gym is not in proper order, people can have accidents and sustain injuries. Some examples of negligence on the part of a gym can include:

  • Wet or slippery floors
  • Objects in walkways
  • Debris on the floor
  • Worn floor or carpet
  • Cords laid across walkways
  • Dangerous pool or hot tub conditions
  • Televisions or other equipment that is not properly secured and may fall

If a hazard does exist in a gym and it cannot be repaired right away, the gym must provide adequate warning so that gym-goers can take precautions. For example, if a floor was recently cleaned and has not yet dried, there should be a “WET FLOOR” sign prominently displayed.

Defective Equipment

People can also be injured by equipment at the gym if a malfunction occurs. Gyms involve many different kinds of machines, weights, benches, and other equipment, all of which should be safe for its intended use. When a malfunction occurs, one of two parties can generally be held liable:

Manufacturer – If the equipment had a defect when it was purchased because of a flaw in design or assembly, the manufacturer can be held liable for any injuries that result under the concept of products liability.2

Gym owner – If the equipment was in good condition when it was purchased but then malfunctions because the gym did not properly inspect, maintain, or repair the equipment, the gym would be the liable party.

Instructor or Personal Trainer Errors

When you take a class or sign up for personal training, you should be able to expect that you can rely on the professional to provide a safe program for you to follow. All staff who guide gym-goers should be properly trained and should be aware of the limitations of different individuals.

If an exercise instructor or personal trainer pushes you beyond your limits and injuries result, they may be found to be negligent. If they are employees of the gym, the gym itself may also be liable for your medical costs, lost income, and other losses.

Consult with an Experienced Philadelphia Personal Injury Attorney Today

No one wants to be injured at the gym, however, these types of injuries do occur. It is crucial to determine the exact type of negligence that caused your gym injury and who should be responsible for compensating you. At The Levin Firm in Philadelphia, a skilled personal injury lawyer can help you pursue a claim and receive the settlement or award you deserve for your injuries. Please call us at (215) 825-5183 for a free consultation as soon as possible.

1https://www.law.cornell.edu/wex/negligence

2https://www.law.cornell.edu/wex/products_liability

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February 14, 2017

Information Regarding Neck Injuries

Personal Injury Lawyers in Philadelphia

There are many different parts of the neck that can be easily injured, including bones, joints, nerves, muscles, tendons, and ligaments. Your bones or soft tissue can be damaged, sprained, strained, or torn, resulting in serious pain and limited mobility of your head, shoulders, and arms.

Too many people ignore neck pain and delay seeking the treatment they need because they believe the pain will subside and that their injury is not serious enough to see a doctor. In reality, however, neck injuries can take a toll and have many effects on your life if they are not properly treated. The following is some additional information regarding neck injuries.

Common Causes of Neck Injuries

Neck injuries can happen for a variety of reasons. In some cases, they can result from overuse or even sleeping on the wrong pillow. In other situations, neck injuries happen because of an accident caused by a negligent person or company. Some preventable accidents that can cause neck injuries include the following:

  • Auto accidents
  • Pedestrian accidents
  • Bicycle accidents
  • Motorcycle accidents
  • Falls
  • Sports injuries

Neck Injury Symptoms and Effects

Following any type of accident, you should keep an eye out for any symptoms that may indicate that your neck has been injured. Such symptoms can include:

  • Soreness
  • Swelling
  • Bruising
  • Stiffness
  • Lack of mobility
  • Shoulder pain
  • Headaches

Even dull pain in your head, neck, or shoulders can wear you down easily. In addition to the physical pain and impairments of neck injuries, dealing with chronic and ongoing pain can also have an effect on your mental and emotional health. If left untreated, people with neck injuries may become depressed and may avoid their usual activities.

Furthermore, neck pain can keep many people from performing their job duties. They may have to take time off from work until their neck feels better. In some cases, neck pain can persist for so long that they may lose their jobs or may have to find a new type of job that they can perform. In either situation, neck injuries can result in lost wages, benefits, and professional opportunities.

Diagnosis and Treatment

Because of the potentially serious effects of neck injuries, getting a proper diagnosis as soon as possible is critical. If needed, you should go to the emergency department or you can make an appointment with your physician, who may then refer you to a specialist. Some of the steps in a neck injury diagnosis can include:

  • Reviewing the type of pain that is occurring (radiating, sharp, dull ache, etc.)
  • Location of the pain
  • Asking about numbness, tingling, or similar sensations
  • Mobility restrictions
  • Checking reflexes and neurological abilities
  • Imaging tests such as X-rays and cervical MRIs.1

Once a neck injury is diagnosed, the recommended course of treatment will depend on the specific diagnosis. Some recommendations can include taking painkillers, physical therapy, chiropractic care, physical rest, muscle relaxers, cortisone shots, and in some rare circumstances, surgery. Because treating neck pain often takes time, the costs can add up significantly and can cause serious financial issues, especially if you cannot work in the meantime.

If another person caused your accident and neck injury, you can file an insurance claim or a personal injury lawsuit against them, depending on the circumstances. First, you must identify who was at fault and the exact type of negligent act that they committed to cause the accident. You must also prove how much you lost due to your neck injury including costs of medical treatment, lost income, future treatment costs and future lost earning power, pain and suffering, mental suffering, and loss of enjoyment of life. It is important to realize that you only have a limited period of time to file a claim due to the statute of limitations in Pennsylvania,2 so you should not delay consulting with an experienced attorney about your rights.

Contact a Philadelphia Neck Injury Attorney for a Free Consultation

While a neck injury may not sound especially serious, people who have suffered this type of injury know just how significantly it can affect your life. Neck injuries can have an effect on your physical health, emotional well-being, professional life, and more and victims deserve to be fully compensated for their losses by any party who caused their injuries. At The Levin Firm, our Philadelphia personal injury attorneys can help you prove the severity of your neck injury and seek the compensation you deserve. Please call our office at (215) 825-5183 today.

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January 12, 2017

Information about Premises Liability Claims

Premise Liability Lawyers in PA

Claims that arise from injuries that you sustain in accidents can be categorized under the general umbrella of “personal injury.” However, there are more specific types of claims depending on now that injury occurred. For example, cases against doctors who cause injuries are called “medical malpractice” claims and cases against companies that sold dangerous products are called “products liability” claims. One common type of personal injury case is called “premises liability” and it involves a claim against a property owner whose negligence caused your injury.

Types of Accidents that can Lead to Premises Liability Claims

Many different accidents can happen on another party’s property, whether that property is commercial or residential. Some examples of accidents at the heart of premises liability claims include the following:

  • Slips, trips, and falls
  • Falls down stairs
  • Falls from landings, balconies, or other heights
  • Getting hit by falling objects
  • Swimming pool or spa accidents
  • Construction site accidents
  • Toxic exposure
  • Electrocution
  • Blasting or explosion accidents
  • Assaults or robberies

Such accidents can happen in many different locations, including grocery stores, schools, retail stores, apartment or condo complexes, bars and restaurants, hotels and resorts, workplaces, and much more.

Any of these accidents can result in serious and often life-changing injuries for victims. Injuries can range from broken bones to brain or spinal cord injuries1 to severe burns, among many others. Victims are often left wondering who they can hold responsible for their extensive medical bills, pain and suffering, and other injury-related losses.

Negligence in Premises Liability Cases

When a party is negligent and causes injury, they can be held liable for the losses of the injured victim. This is no different in premises liability cases as negligent property owners can be ordered to compensate victims for their losses stemming from the accident. In order to be deemed negligent, property owners must have breached their legal duty to maintain their premises and keep it in reasonably safe condition for customers, visitors, and other guests.

Some examples of negligence that can lead to premises liability can include:

  • Having worn or slippery flooring or carpets
  • Allowing wet spills to stay on floors
  • Not cleaning up debris from walkways
  • Having dangerous stairways or broken railings
  • Having unfinished or faulty electrical systems or wires
  • Not having adequate security measures to protect guests
  • Having unstable shelving
  • Allowing any other defects or hazards to persist on the property

Note that a property owner may not defend against a premises liability lawsuit by simply claiming ignorance of the hazard or dangerous condition. Part of a property owner’s duty is to regularly inspect the property so that any potential risks can be identified and addressed. This includes performing routine maintenance and performing repairs on defects. If a property owner simply ignores the premises, it will not relieve them of liability if an injury occurs.

Instead, in this situation, the injured victims must demonstrate that the property owner should have known about the hazard if they had taken reasonable care. For example, imagine that a jar fell in a grocery store and spilled liquid all over the floor. You subsequently slipped on the liquid and fell, suffering a serious back injury. You would have to show that a reasonable store owner or manager would have discovered the spill in the time before you fell and would have cleaned it up or warned visitors of the possible fall hazard.

Statute of Limitations in PA

Pennsylvania law2 does not give you an indefinite period of time to file a claim against a property owner for premises liability. Instead, you only have two years from the date of the injury to file your lawsuit. In this time, you must gather evidence of the property owner’s negligence and of your losses, as well as prepare your complaint to file with the court. Because time is limited, you should discuss your case with an experienced lawyer as soon as possible.

Consult with a Philadelphia Premises Liability Attorney Regarding Your Case

Premises liability cases can be significantly different than a case involving other types of accidents. You need to have an attorney handling your case who specifically understands how to prove negligence in a premises liability claim and who can help you hold business and property owners fully liable for the injuries you suffered and losses you incurred. At The Levin Firm in Philadelphia, we have the resources needed to take on claims against businesses large and small and we are committed to fighting for your rights. Please call our premises liability lawyer at 215-825-5183 today to learn more about our services for free.

1http://www.ninds.nih.gov/disorders/sci/sci.htm

2http://www.legis.state.pa.us/WU01/LI/LI/CT/HTM/42/00.055..HTM

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December 29, 2016

Cold Weather Personal Injury Concerns

Personal Injury Attorneys in PA

Philadelphia can have extremely severe winters. Subfreezing temperatures, snow, ice, and dangerous wind chills are not uncommon, and these conditions can often last for days or even weeks on end. While the cold and wintry weather may initially seem like an annoyance that can be easily managed by simply bundling up in quality outerwear, in reality, cold weather can put us all at risk of serious injury. Some of the more common accidents that can occur in cold weather are discussed below.

Car Accidents

Conditions like snow and ice can make driving extraordinarily difficult, even for four-wheel drive vehicles. In many cases, winter storms can result in significantly decreased visibility and slippery roads that can easily result in accidents. Even cold weather by itself can result in the formation of “black ice,” which is a thin sheet of ice on the road that is often invisible to motorists.

Slip and Fall Accidents

Slip and fall accidents are a common occurrence during cold weather, as accumulating snow and ice can make surfaces like sidewalks, walkways, stairwells, and entryways treacherous for pedestrians. While slip and falls are often thought of as minor accidents that do not usually result in serious injury, they are responsible for almost 9 million emergency department visits each year. Some of the more common injuries sustained in cold weather slip and fall accidents include the following:

Broken bones

Hip fractures

Soft tissue injuries

Traumatic brain injuries

Spinal cord injuries

Nerve injuries

Lacerations

Strains

  Sprains

Muscle tears

 

Space Heater Accidents

When the weather gets colder, many people in the Philadelphia area turn to space heaters to keep their homes or offices warm. A space heater can be an efficient way to keep your energy costs low by only heating areas that you need to be heated and also can help manage the temperature in homes with drafty windows or doors. Unfortunately, these devices are also very dangerous and capable of causing serious injuries. For one thing, space heaters themselves can become extremely hot. If you accidentally touch a space heater after it has been operating for some time, it can easily cause serious burns. Secondly, space heaters are a serious fire hazard. They can overheat and start spark fires that could potentially burn an entire house down.

Holiday Decoration Accidents

Winter and colder weather also bring the holiday season. During this time, many people like to decorate their homes in strings of lights or other illuminated objects to create a holiday display. These items can be either inside or outside of the home and usually rely on electricity to operate. Like anything else electrical, if they are misused or defective in some way that can cause serious injury or spark fires. In addition, people who decorate their homes during the holidays often need to get on the roof or extend a ladder to the second story (or beyond) in order to achieve the desired result. As a result, holiday decorating could also expose you to a serious risk of injury in a fall accident.

Determining Whether You Have a Claim

Not every accidental injury entitles victims to pursue compensation. For example, if you are driving in snowy weather and lose control of your car because you were driving too fast, it is unlikely that you will be able to recover for your losses. If on the other hand, you can establish that your accident was the result of a faulty anti-lock braking system, you probably will be able to obtain a settlement or an award. Because of the complicated nature personal injury claims, it is critical for victims to have their case reviewed by an experienced attorney. Our lawyers will review your claim for free and determine whether you have a claim. In addition, if you do have a claim to pursue, you are under no obligation to retain us after your initial consultation.

Call a Philadelphia Personal Injury Attorney Today to Discuss Your Case

If you are injured in an accident this winter, you should speak to an attorney as soon as you can. In many instances, accidents related to cold weather conditions entitle victims to compensation. Examples of the kinds of damages that you may be able to recover include medical expenses, lost income, loss of quality of life, and physical and emotional pain and suffering, among others. To schedule a free consultation with an attorney, call The Levin Firm today at 215-825-5183 or send us an email through our online contact form.

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October 13, 2016

Swimming Pool Accidents in Hotels

Personal Injury Lawyers in Philadelphia

Traveling with kids can be fun but also challenging. Kids often need to be entertained on a constant basis and so you want to plan your trip with that in mind. For this reason, many parents try to specifically book reservations at hotels that have swimming pools and hot tubs. While many stays at hotels happen without incident, some families experience serious and even tragic accidents at hotel pools.

In many situations, hotels can be held liable for the losses your family suffered if your child was involved in a swimming pool accident on the premises. Whether the pool accident involved near-drowning, drowning, or other types of injuries, it is critical that you discuss what happened with a highly experienced premises liability attorney who understands how to help victims of swimming pool accidents recover for their losses.

  • Injuries Resulting from Hotel Pool Accidents
  • Many types of injuries can occur in or around swimming pools, many of which can be severe or fatal. Some examples of pool injuries can include the following:
  • Brain damage from oxygen deprivation (anoxia1 or hypoxia2)
  • Traumatic brain injury from head trauma
  • Broken bones
  • Burns and electrocution injuries
  • Evisceration
  • Death

As you can see, many of the injuries caused by pool accidents are highly serious and can have an extreme effect on your family. As a result, you should always seek information regarding whether you can hold a hotel responsible for the swimming pool accident and injuries.

How Hotels Can Be Negligent

In some cases, a swimming pool accident is just that – an accident that no one could have prevented. However, in many instances, a pool accident happens because the hotel was negligent in some manner. The following are only some ways in which a hotel can be negligent regarding a swimming pool or hot tub:

Defective gate and/or latch – Laws require that pool at hotels have fences or other enclosure with specific doors or gates that lock or latch. This is largely to keep unattended children from wandering into the pool area and falling into the pool. If a hotel has a door with a broken lock or a gate with a broken latch, it can be responsible for accidents that result.

Inadequate warnings – Most hotel pools do not have lifeguards on duty. However, there must be adequate warnings of such posted in the pool area. In addition, hotels must post any other applicable warnings (such as “no diving”) or rules, as well as have obvious depth markers around the pool so parents know to keep their kids in shallow waters if needed.

Diving board accidents – If a hotel pool has a diving board, it must be properly inspected and maintained. If a diving board is broken in any way, anyone using the diving board can fall off and hit their head or hurt another part of their body.

Slip and fall accidents – Hotels should ensure that the area surrounding the pool is not slippery and does not have tools or debris in walkways. If there are dangerous surfaces around the pool, guests can slip and fall causing traumatic injuries or may even fall into the pool, causing near-drowning or drowning accidents.

Drain accidents – Pool and hot tub drains can be very dangerous if they are not in compliance with relevant laws, such as the Virginia Graeme Baker Pool and Spa Safety Act,3 people can become suctioned to the drain, which can result in evisceration and drowning.

Other conditions inside the pool – Pools can have many other dangerous conditions including murky water, rough surfaces, incorrect chemicals, or other factors that can lead to drowning accidents or can make it difficult for parents to realize their child may be in trouble.

Electrocutions – Hotel pools are often equipped with lights and other electrical components that can help increase safety – that is unless they are wired incorrectly or improperly maintained. In such cases, anyone in the pool may be electrocuted and may suffer injuries or drown as a result.

Call an Experienced Philadelphia Hotel Injuries Attorney for More Information Today

If you or your child was injured in a hotel pool, an experienced Philadelphia hotel accident lawyer can evaluate the situation and help identify any negligence and responsibility on the part of the hotel. Please do not hesitate to call The Levin Firm to discuss a possible case for free at 215-825-5183 today.

1https://www.healthgrades.com/conditions/anoxia

2https://medlineplus.gov/ency/article/001435.htm

3http://www.poolsafely.gov/wp-content/uploads/2016/04/pssa.pdf

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