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Philadelphia Personal Injury Law Blog

Is there a time limit for filing a wrongful death suit?

You may have heard of the term "statutes of limitations" as applied to criminal law. In some cases, the law protects defendants from criminal prosecution after a certain time span has elapsed; that is, the defendant cannot be prosecuted decades after an incident of petty theft. Similarly, statutes of limitations exist for civil cases, including those alleging wrongful death. After that limitations period expires, victims are no longer able to pursue a civil suit against the target of their claim.

Each state has a different set of rules governing legal actions in wrongful death suits. In some jurisdictions, you may have only one year to file a civil suit after the fatal accident. Philadelphia wrongful death lawyers can advise their clients about the nature of Pennsylvania's statutes of limitations rules.

Seniors surrendering the keys prevents car accidents

There are many senior citizens in and around Philadelphia who are perfectly safe and capable drivers. But it's a sad fact that the aging process does tend to dull once-sharp senses and slow reaction time, both of which can be crucial to avoiding motor vehicle accidents.

As the baby boomer generation ages, there will be an abundance of elderly drivers on the road in Pennsylvania and elsewhere. This is not necessarily a bad thing, as the rate of collisions and auto fatalities has declined from 1997 to 2008 despite there being over 20 million drivers age 70 or older behind the wheel.

Philadelphia car accident claims 4th victim

In a sad update to the recent story of the deaths of three children on a Philadelphia street corner, their mother has now succumbed to the critical injuries she suffered as the four were run down by an out-of-control car stolen by two armed carjackers.

The four, along with another woman who escaped with only minor injuries, had been selling fruit at a makeshift sidewalk stand to raise money for a playground at their church.

VA medical malpractice victim: Hospital gave me a death sentence

The Department of Veterans Affairs is killing people. That may seem like a strong statement, but stories from victims who have suffered through the loss of a loved one caused by VA medical malpractice show the true face of this health care organization. One Pennsylvania man who resides near Scranton says that the VA essentially handed him a death sentence by failing to appropriately diagnose his medical condition.

The man is suffering from late-stage prostate cancer that has spread to his bones. This man spent most of his adult life serving his country in the Coast Guard, National Guard and Army Reserve. He says that medical malpractice at the VA caused him to suffer serious health conditions that have significantly shortened his life.

How can surface conditions contribute to slip and fall accidents?

A large percentage of the personal injury suits that are filed every year in Pennsylvania are related to slips, trips and falls. Premises liability accidents are caused by a variety of factors, including the weather, building lighting and pavement maintenance. Philadelphia premises liability attorneys can help those victims of slip-and-fall accidents learn more about their legal rights in court throughout the civil litigation process.

Property owners are responsible for maintaining safe walkways for customers and visitors to their establishment. Parking lots are included in this sphere of influence. For example, a parking lot should be clear of major cracks and holes, and there should not be significant changes in height between sections of the parking lot. In a snowy environment like Philadelphia, too many people end up hurting themselves because of uneven pavement on sidewalks and in parking lots.

Ins and outs of traumatic brain injuries

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, in 2010, the combined total of deaths, hospitalizations and emergency room visits due to traumatic brain injuries climbed to the rate of 823.7 per 100,000 individuals. Many of those who suffered the TBIs were from Philadelphia. Below are some important things to know about TBIs.

-- What is a traumatic brain injury?

Doctor negligence leads to wrong blood-type transfusion, death

A Pennsylvania medical facility that administered a blood transfusion with the wrong type of blood will probably not face criminal charges, according to area prosecutors. The incident, which occurred at Lehigh Valley Hospital in Hazelton, left an area woman dead because of doctor negligence. The woman's body reportedly rejected the blood that was mistakenly administered after a surgery at the facility. Reports from the Pennsylvania Department of Health indicate that the woman died because of the fatal medical error.

Attorneys in the area say that criminal charges are rarely filed in such cases, though it would be technically possible for physicians and administrators to face manslaughter or reckless endangerment allegations. However, the hospital has already been cited by government agencies, and it has also been required to implement a change plan to improve procedures. It appears that a surgical unit was improperly staffed after the woman received her procedure, which likely contributed to the fatal medical error.

Philadelphia car accident kills 3 after carjacking

Last month in Philadelphia, a carjacking took an especially deadly turn when two armed men who allegedly seized a Toyota 4Runner at gunpoint from a female real estate agent plowed into a group of people. Two women and three children were selling fruit at a sidewalk stand in order to raise funds for a north Philadelphia church playground.

Three siblings were killed, ages 15, 10 and 7, and their 34-year-old mother was critically injured as well. The other woman suffered a fractured ankle in the tragic incident.

Different types of serious brain injuries in Pennsylvania

Traumatic Brain Injuries, also known as TBIs, must be taken very seriously at all times. There is a high chance of a disability or even death as a result of an injury like this. The stats that have been collected even show that a full 30 percent of all of the deaths in the United States that are related to injuries happen, in part, because of TBIs.

This is also an injury that is more common than some people may think. Statistics from 2010 showed that there were around 2.5 million reported traumatic brain injuries in the United States for that one year alone.

Another wrongful death lawsuit for embattled contractors

Another area death has been blamed on a building collapse in 2013. Family members of a Philadelphia truck driver say that their 59-year-old relative suffered a mild heart attack after he spent an hour buried in the rubble of a building. They claim in a wrongful death lawsuit that the building collapse exacerbated existing heart conditions and ultimately caused him to die after being hospitalized several times.

The contractors who are reportedly responsible for the building collapse are facing civil allegations and criminal charges in connection with the incident, which occurred in June 2013. The victim in this lawsuit -- along with several other decedents and injured survivors -- was buried in rubble while shopping at a Salvation Army thrift store. A massive brick wall collapsed onto that store, causing 19 people to be buried in the rubble. The two contractors are facing third-degree manslaughter charges and other criminal offenses after reportedly ignoring safe work practices. It appears that one of the construction workers was operating heavy machinery while under the influence of illegal drugs and painkillers, according to news reports.

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