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Shop ‘til You Drop? What to Do if You’re Injured in a Department Store or Mall

terri-november-week-3-img-mallWith the holiday shopping season right around the corner, there are many of us who are joking around that we need to build up our muscles and get into shape – after all, we have heavy packages to lift and bargains to hunt! Though this may be funny banter for the dinner table or among our friends and family, the truth is that department stores and shopping malls are frequently the scenes of accidents and serious injury, and if it happens to you it will no longer be a laughing matter. There’s no question that some accidents that happen in these locations are a matter of clumsiness or not paying close enough attention to surroundings – it’s easy to be distracted by holiday decorations, sale prices and the actions of other shoppers. But there are also situations where an accident is a direct result of the negligence of a store or mall manager. When floors are slippery or strewn with debris, when security is not adequate or lighting is insufficient, people can end up slipping and falling and suffering serious, long-term damage and pain. If you’re injured in a department store or mall, it’s important that you take your situation seriously and know what actions to take. The experienced attorneys at Philly Justice are pleased to provide you with these helpful tips on what to do.

The most important thing you need to do if you have been injured in a department store or mall is to get the medical attention you need. Whether you seek help at an emergency room, an urgent care center or your doctor’s office, make sure that you get checked out, keep all the documentation of your visit and be sure to tell the healthcare professionals exactly what happened. But it is also important that you record the details of the incident and get the names and contact information of anybody who may have been there to witness it.  Whether the cause of your accident was liquid on the floor, debris, poor lighting, a loose handrail or anything else, make sure that you photograph it so that you have evidence to show where negligence occurred, and write down what happened as soon after the event as possible so that you don’t need to worry about forgetting important details.

Wherever the incident occurred, it is important that you notify the place of business of what happened. They will need to have documentation of the event – but don’t sign any waivers, or make any comments as to your physical condition. If you waive away help and tell them that you are okay, that might be used against you later. Also, be sure to pay attention to comments that others may make. If an employee mentions that somebody else has been hurt before, or that they were afraid that something would happen, make note of it. It can make a big difference in the success of a personal injury lawsuit.

If you have suffered an injury as a result of another’s negligence, then you have the right to file a personal injury lawsuit seeking compensation for the damages that you’ve suffered. Contact the personal injury lawyers at Philly Justice to learn more about how we can help.

Did the SEPTA Strike Do Anything to Improve Safety for Mass Transit Passengers?

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On November 1st, the 4,700 public transportation workers responsible for keeping Philadelphia’s transit system moving went on strike. The concerns that spurred the work stoppage included wages and health care benefits, and these were the topics that generated the most conversation and attention in the press. But pocketbook topics were not the only major issues: there were also efforts directed at addressing driver fatigue and their impact on the safety of mass transit passengers. Now that the strike is over, having ended early in the morning of November 7th, passengers are wondering whether the new contract will do anything to lessen the risk of mass transit accidents.

The news has been filled with stories of accidents that have been linked to driver fatigue, and this is as true of mass transit accidents as those involving passenger car drivers and commercial trucks. There is significant research that has pointed to human fatigue as a serious health hazard that affects judgement, reaction time, decision making and control. The management of organizations like SEPTA have to find a way to balance their ability to keep costs low and providing drivers and transit operators with the ability to get the rest that they need in order to provide a safe environment for their riders.  The drivers themselves recognize this delicate balance and want to receive more pay and more robust health benefits, but they also expressed in their strike negotiations the need to provide adequate opportunity for rest periods and breaks.

The system that was in place prior to the strike provided for a waiver to existing state laws regarding regulations on commercial drivers. Those responsible for operating SEPTA’s buses are not permitted to be on duty for more than 16 hours a day, and can’t work for more than 30 hours in two back-to-back days. Further they are required to have an eight-hour rest period between shifts. But drivers feel a need for more rest time to ensure passenger safety. May indicated that they need more time at the end of a route, and that they are concerned that the current schedule means that they are driving tired on a constant basis. Also at issue is the fact that transit operators are not permitted to sleep on the premises at the bus depot, and this means that those who are working a swing shift need to find someplace else to get some rest – and that their travel time to wherever that may be cuts down on the amount of time that they can sleep.

The terms of the newly negotiated contract have not yet been revealed, so it is difficult to tell whether they will do anything to improve passenger safety.  At the Philadelphia law firm of Philly justice, our attorneys are passionate in pursuing justice for those who are injured in mass transit accidents. If you or someone you love has been injured in a mass transit accident, contact us for immediate help.

 

What to Look for in Choosing a Nursing Home

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If you have an elderly or infirm parent or loved one who needs constant care, you are not alone. As America ages, more and more people are spending sleepless hours struggling with the difficult decision as to whether they’re capable of providing for all of their loved ones’ many needs. If you’ve decided that you can’t do it and need to entrust their care to a nursing home, you may think that the hard part is over – in truth it has only just begun. Now you need to find the right facility, and that requires a tremendous amount of research, legwork, and after all is said and done, a huge leap of faith that the nursing home that you select will provide the care that they promise in their brochure. Nursing home abuse and neglect are not just news stories: they are happening to residents of nursing homes all around the country on a daily basis, and that’s why it is so important that you take the time to truly investigate each facility that you are considering and that you know what to be on the lookout for. The personal injury attorneys at Philly Justice have provided legal guidance to many families whose loved ones have been victims, and we are dedicated to making sure that you know what to look for in choosing a nursing home that will provide you with peace of mind and your loved one with the care that they need.

The first thing that you need to do is to speak to your loved one’s physician so that you have a good understanding of the type of care that they need. Do they need to be on a ventilator? That requires a specialized facility. The same is true for those suffering from dementia, who need memory care. Once you’ve identified any specialized services you require you need to identify facilities that are in your area that provide them and start making appointments to visit them. Asking friends and neighbors for recommendations is a good idea, and so is visiting a number of review websites. Social workers or estate planners can also be valuable sources of information and recommendations.

It is essential that you visit any facility that you are considering, and that you take the time to ask the administrators and staff of any nursing home specific questions about the care that they provide. Some of the questions you need answers to include:

  • What is the ratio of staff to residents
  • Does the same staff member provide care all the time, or do they rotate
  • What type of therapies are available

Just as important as getting the answers to these questions are the observations you are able to make for yourself. Is the nursing home clean? Are the residents engaged and happy or are they left to sit in hallways unattended? What is the quality of the food?

Choosing the right nursing home on behalf of a loved one is essential for their safety and wellbeing, and no matter how hard you try there is always the possibility that there will be a hidden danger that you couldn’t anticipate. If this happens and your loved one suffers abuse or neglect, the compassionate attorneys at Philly Justice can help. Contact us today if you need help.

Common Causes of Head on Collisions

Head On Collision Philly Justice

Of all the many types of auto accidents that can occur, a head-on collision is one of the most dangerous. When two vehicles crash are moving towards one another from opposite directions and crash into one another, the force of impact is dramatically increased and there is far greater potential for the occupants of both vehicles to sustain life-threatening injuries.  The statistics on these crashes bear this out: they are responsible for a full 10% of all driving deaths.  The reason for the high fatality rate is connected to the nature of the injuries that are suffered – passengers are at risk for catastrophic brain injuries and spinal cord injuries. Fortunately, head-on collisions are relatively rare — only two percent of all accidents —as drivers are often able to swerve out of the way and avoid them. But if someone you love has been injured or killed in this type of collision, you need the help of experienced, aggressive personal injury lawyers to make sure that they get the help and compensation that they deserve. The lawyers at Philly Justice can help.

There are a number of reasons why head-on collisions happen. In most cases they take place on rural roads or undivided two-lane roads where it is possible for a vehicle to cross into the opposing traffic’s lane. In some cases, this is purposeful, as when a driver is trying to pass slow-moving traffic but does not execute the maneuver appropriately. In other cases, the crossover into oncoming traffic is inadvertent and caused by the driver being drunk or distracted, falling asleep behind the wheel, or driving in bad weather conditions. In some cases, a head-on collision is a matter of a driver operating their vehicle recklessly and failing to maintain control or disobeying the laws and traffic signals.

Each of these examples can result in death or serious injury to the person who caused the accident, and also to those who are in the unfortunate position of having been in the driver’s path. These victims often die or suffer a range of injuries, including:

  • Airbag injuries and abrasions
  • Broken and fractured bones
  • Concussion
  • Dental damage
  • Head trauma
  • Internal injuries
  • Lacerations
  • Neck and back injuries

If you or someone that you love has been a victim of a head-on collision, then you are well aware that the long-term effect can be devastating. Medical bills, lost wages, chronic pain and emotional trauma are just a few of the damages that can result. The personal injury lawyers at Philly Justice are here to help you get the compensation that you need to help you with all of the harm and costs that you face, and to help you put your life back together. We are passionate about getting victims the justice they deserve in the face of negligence. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help.

Tips on How to Choose a Personal Injury Lawyer

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It might feel a little strange to think about choosing a personal injury lawyer in the same way that we choose other products or services, but that is exactly what we do – or should do. When you are hiring a person or law firm to represent you in a lawsuit, you need to do extensive research to determine who will provide you with the best value and who you will be most satisfied with.  Though it may be tempting to simply go with the attorney that a friend or family member recommends or who has the most attractive website, it is important that you take the time to speak with several different lawyers. That is the only way that you will truly get a feel for who you will get along with best, who you are most comfortable with, as well as who has the most impressive record of success in cases similar to yours.

If you have suffered an injury as a result of somebody else’s carelessness, then you need an effective attorney to act as your advocate and representative. Choosing a personal injury lawyer is not something that you should take lightly – you don’t want to find yourself sitting in court and feeling that you have made a mistake, or that you are uncomfortable with the way that your attorney is handling your case. The best way to avoid this is to take the time to make an educated decision.  The first thing you should do is assemble a list of potential law firms or lawyers as candidates to represent you. You can do this by asking friends and family members, consulting a law directory such as Martindale-Hubbell, asking other attorneys, and doing internet research. After you have gone through these steps you should have a good idea of a law firm’s standing in the community. Only once you have gathered this information should you move to the next step of conducting interviews with each one of them. Even if you are impressed with your initial meeting, you should take the time to meet with all of the candidates you have identified, as you can learn a lot from each of your meetings. Be sure to ask pertinent questions of each attorney, including how many years they have been in practice and how many cases similar to yours they have handled. It is important to ask each attorney for references so that you can determine whether previous clients have been pleased with their results. You also want to ask each attorney about their fee structure, how you will be billed, how they will keep you updated on the status of your case, and whether the attorney you are speaking with will be the one who actually handles your case.

Determining which attorney you want to work with depends on all of these factors, as well as how comfortable you are when speaking with them. You will be working with your personal injury attorney closely, so make sure that you feel that they are a good match for you. If you’d like to discuss your case with the attorneys at Philly Justice, call us today to set up a convenient appointment.

Types of Injuries Caused by Negligence

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At the Philadelphia law firm of Philly Justice, we are committed to providing aggressive, competent legal representation to those who have been hurt as a result of the negligence of another person or entity. In our many years of acting as advocates on behalf of victims, one thing that we have seen over and over again is that most people don’t recognize that negligence has taken place or realize that their rights have been violated. There are many types of injuries caused by negligence, and whether you have been hurt in a car accident, have been injured by a defective product, been involved in a slip and fall or accident at work or while on somebody else’s property, if you’ve been hurt and you think it might be because of somebody else’s carelessness, you deserve to have somebody stand up for your rights.  The lawyers at Philly Justice will help you get the compensation you deserve to help pay your medical expenses and other damages.

If you’ve been in any type of accident, the first thing that you need to take care of is your own health and wellbeing, as well as that of any others who may have been with you. You need to seek medical attention, even if you don’t think that you’ve been injured. But once you are stable and safe, if you’ve been injured or suffered any damages you need to take a close look at what happened to you to see whether it was the result of somebody else’s negligence. Negligence is defined as when a person or entity acts in a way that is careless or reckless and results in somebody else being injured. Simply being careless is not enough – there are plenty of people who act carelessly and who are lucky enough to have no negative repercussions ensue. But if damage is done and somebody is hurt, then the person who is negligent can be held legally responsible for their medical expenses, any wages that they lose as a result of their injury, any property damage, and in some cases for the cost of their pain and suffering.

As personal injury attorneys, we know that some injuries are out of our control. We also know that there are a number of serious types of injuries that are caused by negligence. We have successfully represented those injured in automobile accidents, those hurt in workplace accidents, those injured on other peoples’ premises as a result of poor maintenance, and those injured by defective products.  We welcome the opportunity to meet with you to discuss the specifics of what happened to you. We will ask you all the right questions and give you the answers you need to help you determine what your next steps should be, and to let you know if you are eligible to file a claim against those responsible for your injuries. Contact Philly Justice today to set up a free consultation.

Learn the Workplace Accident Procedure

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Some people work in environments that are seemingly safe, like law offices or financial institutions. Others’ workplaces are full of risks – construction sites are an excellent example. No matter whether your work in a white collar environment or blue collar, inside or outside, seemingly safe or clearly dangerous, accidents can happen and medical treatment may be needed. If you have suffered a workplace injury in the state of Pennsylvania, it is important that you have a good understanding of the required workplace accident procedure. The state of Pennsylvania has a Workers’ Compensation Act that holds employers responsible for providing compensation to many employees who are injured on the job, but those benefits will only be provided if certain criteria are met – and that includes following all of the rules. The attorneys at the law firm of Philly Justice have successfully represented many people who have been injured at work, providing them with the legal counsel that they needed to get the compensation that they deserved.

The first step to helping yourself get the compensation you need for your work injury medical expenses is to make sure you follow the required workplace accident procedure.  When you have been injured on the job or have developed an occupational illness as a result of conditions in your work environment, you need to report the illness or injury to your employer immediately after the accident takes place or the illness is diagnosed.  Though it is generally expected that this notification occurs within 3 weeks, or 21 days, of the accident, when circumstances require it an employee can have as long as 120 days to notify work of the problem. Failure to meet this timeline greatly reduces your chances of having a claim approved.

Notification of your injury or illness should provide certain details, including when the injury occurred and what the circumstances were. Upon receipt of this information, your boss will be required to file a report of the injury with the Bureau of Workers’ Compensation and should provide you with some paperwork to fill out and sign. These are important, as they allow your employer access to medical records that will be needed for them to approve your claim. Your workplace has the right to restrict you to specific physicians for your initial care, and if they do then you are required to utilize one of the physicians on the list for a minimum of 90 days.

By following this protocol, you greatly enhance your chance of getting the workers’ compensation benefits that you need, but it is a mistake to assume that your employer will automatically approve your claim. Either the workplace or their insurance carrier may make things difficult for you, and this is why it is a good idea to consult with an attorney experienced in workers’ compensation claims at your earliest convenience. The lawyers at Philly Justice are well equipped to answer all of your questions and to guide you through the claims process to ensure that you are meeting all of your responsibilities and deadlines, have all of the appropriate documentation on hand, and are well represented in case you need to appeal a denial of your claim.

How to Prevent Nursing Home Abuse

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Abuse and neglect are both very real concerns and fears for those who have loved ones whose care they have entrusted to a nursing home. While nursing home abuse consists of intentional harm, neglect can be equally damaging, and consists of substandard care or a breach of duty. In both instances, the patient can suffer physically, emotionally, and financially as a result, so it is incumbent upon friends and family members to remain vigilant. At the personal injury law firm of Philly Justice, we understand how devastating the mere thought of a loved one becoming a victim can be, and we work hard to ensure that people with friends and family members in care facilities know how to prevent nursing home abuse and neglect. We are also there to provide you with the legal assistance you need if your worst fears are realized and your loved one has suffered some kind of injury.

One of the most important steps that can be taken to prevent nursing home abuse is to educate yourself as to exactly what it is. When a person is placed into a care facility, it is generally because they are no longer able to provide care for themselves. This means that they are also unlikely to be able to fend for themselves when being threatened in any way. This may be a result of diminished sight or hearing, mental capacity, or physical ability. Nursing home abuse can include:

Physical abuse such as hitting, pushing, or the inappropriate use of confinement, restraints or medication

Emotional abuse such as intimidation, humiliation or scapegoating

Nonverbal psychological abuse such as ignoring the resident, isolating them or terrorizing them

Sexual abuse includes nonconsensual physical contact as well as showing them pornographic materials or making them disrobe or watch others in sexual acts

Neglect or abandonment

Financial exploitation

Though it is impossible to always be present in order to prevent nursing home abuse, you can make sure that when you are in your loved one’s presence you are taking care to listen carefully and ask them pointed questions about their care. Assuming that a nursing home resident is imagining things or is looking for attention is a recipe for disaster: you need to trust your instincts and take action if you have the slightest suspicion that something is amiss.

Another important way to prevent nursing home abuse is to familiarize yourself with the warning signs and actively look for them. This can include closely monitoring the resident’s medications to make sure that they are being taken and are at appropriate levels rather than too few or too many being dispensed; monitoring financial accounts; visiting frequently and looking for physical marks such as bruises, signs of restraint, or signs of overmedication. It is also important to make sure that you have the opportunity to spend time with your loved one when they are not in the presence of a nursing home staff member so that they feel free to speak.

Nursing home abuse is an unthinkable betrayal of trust. If you believe that your loved one has been a victim of nursing home abuse, contact the personal injury law firm of Philly Justice immediately for help.

Causes of Mass Transit Accidents

mass transit accidentsDo you take a regional rail line into work each day? Ride the bus? Do you travel by plane, whether for pleasure or for business? If so, then you are one of the tens of millions of people who use mass transit. It has been estimated that more than 30 million Americans use mass transit every day, and in most cases they do so with no trouble at all. Our mass transit system is generally assumed to be safe – that is why when accidents occur, they are such big news. Incidents such as the recent Amtrak crash in Philadelphia or the ferry boat accident that took place in New York a few years ago capture our attention and our concern because they make it suddenly dispel our sense of safety and make it clear that we are vulnerable. At Philly Justice, we represent those who have been injured in mass transit accidents that result from negligence, which is one of the most common causes of mass transit accidents.

There is good reason for people to feel at ease when they board mass transit, whether it is a subway, a trolley, a train or a plane. Without being told, we understand that those who run these entities have a duty of care to make sure that we are safe. They are supposed to hire qualified personnel who are well trained, make sure that the vehicles that transport us are in good working condition and well maintained, provide security to ensure our safety, and keep vigilant to make sure that they are preventing accidents from taking place. It is important to remember that not all mass transit accidents involve crashes, and can include incidents that occur to single riders. The most common causes of mass transit accidents include:

Collisions with objects or other vehicles as a result of the driver not paying attention to traffic signals, being distracted by cell phones, intoxication, or falling asleep while operating the vehicle

Criminal activities perpetrated by a rider or riders, or persons in the vicinity or property that the mass transit operator runs. These can include attacks while on platforms or terminals, as well as while actually riding on the vehicle

Slip and fall accidents that occur as a result of debris or unsafe conditions on the property belonging to the mass transit entity, or on the vehicle itself

If you or someone you love has suffered an injury or an attack while riding on mass transit or while on mass transit property, then you may have a right to pursue legal action against the organization for not having provided you with adequate protection consistent with their duty of care. The personal injury attorneys at Philly Justice have a record of successfully assisting those who have been injured or harmed as a result of a mass transit accident. We will meet with you to discuss the particulars of what happened and provide you with the information you need about your rights and how we can help, contact us today.

Common Motorcycle Injuries

Common Motorcycle Injuries

People who ride motorcycles know that doing so puts them at greater risk for injury then riding in a car, but they choose to take that chance in exchange for the joy that they feel in the open air. There are a number of reasons why motorcyclists are vulnerable: though they may feel as if they have greater control of their vehicle, the truth is that it is much more challenging to maintain control of a two-wheel vehicle than of a four-wheel vehicle. There is also the obvious risk posed by not having the protection of a vehicle’s enclosure and having their bodies entirely exposed to both pavement and other vehicles. It is also important that motorcyclists stay vigilant at all times and obey the rules of the road. If you are injured as a result of another driver’s negligence and suffer any kind of motorcycle injury, it is important that you take appropriate action to ensure that your legal rights are protected and that you get the compensation that you deserve. The attorneys at Philly Justice are experienced personal injury lawyers, and can help make sure your interests are well represented.

There is no doubt that the drivers of other vehicles often pose the greatest risk to motorcyclists, as many drivers either are negligent in their driving or even purposefully aggressive towards motorcyclists. There are many things that riders can do to cut down on their risks of suffering the most common motorcycle injuries. These include wearing a helmet, making sure that your motorcycle has an antilock braking system, and choosing a motorcycle that has a higher safety rating.  Though the list of injuries that can happen to a motorcycle rider when they are in an accident is as extensive as there are parts to the body, the specifics of the way that these accidents happen mean that some injuries happen more frequently than others. The three most common motorcycle injuries are:

Head and Neck Injury – Head injuries occur when a rider’s head hits the pavement or the other vehicle, and mean that riders run the risk of concussion, traumatic brain injury, and even death. The neck is always a serious risk to motorcycle riders, as it is completely exposed and if your head is snapped forwards or backwards by the force of an accident, you may end up paralyzed or killed. Even minor neck injuries can lead to a lifetime of pain.

Road Rash – This is a term that describes the injury caused by sliding across the pavement after a motorcycle crash. Skin is torn off, leaving an injury that is far more than a cut or scrape. There is a high risk of infection and nerve damage when a serious road rash occurs.

Biker’s Arm and Leg Injuries – When a motorcycle rider is thrown from their bike, their limbs are extremely vulnerable to the impact of the landing. It is natural to put one’s arm out to break a fall, and this can cause permanent muscle and nerve damage as well as broken limbs. Similarly, legs and feet can break and muscles can be torn in a landing.

People who do not ride motorcycles often do not understand its allure, or the risk that riders are willing to take for the freedom that they feel. But accepting a risk does not mean that you have to accept the consequences of somebody else’s negligence. If you have been harmed by another driver’s reckless or careless behavior then you have a right to compensation, and the attorneys at Philly Justice will fight to make sure that you get what you need and deserve. Contact us today to set up a free consultation to discuss your case.

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