Frequently Asked Questions

Medical Malpractice

What is medical malpractice?

Medical malpractice is when a health care professional or organization such as a doctor, nurse, hospital, nursing home facility, etc. has been careless and not performed their job to the required standard of care, causing injury to, or the death of, a patient. If the standard of care is not met, that person or organization is negligent. Negligence is carelessness. Medical negligence is, essentially, medical carelessness. Medical malpractice can span many areas, including misdiagnosis and failure to diagnose, failure to treat, failure to monitor, lack of informed consent, and failure to communicate, to name just a few. This can apply to birth injuries, spinal cord injuries, medication, amputation, and hospital infections, for example.

If I have an unexpected outcome of a surgery or procedure, is it a medical malpractice claim?

To prove a medical malpractice claim, a plaintiff must prove that the defendant healthcare professional or organization fell below the standard of care for that surgery or procedure. Not every unfavorable outcome is due to medical malpractice because there are some known risks associated with surgeries or certain procedures. However, in general, if you have an unexpected outcome from which you are unlikely to make a full recovery, you should contact an attorney who can help evaluate any potential case.

What should I do if I think I may have a medical malpractice claim?

If you think you have a medical malpractice claim because you had an unfavorable and unexpected outcome, which will significantly impact you or a loved one’s life, we advise you to contact an experienced medical malpractice attorney. An experienced attorney will investigate the details of your potential claim, want to understand how your life has been affected, and may obtain medical records, and an expert opinion. Once this information is obtained, an attorney can help evaluate if you have a potential medical malpractice case.

If a medical professional delayed or failed to diagnose a medical issue, do I have a medical malpractice claim?

According to the peer-reviewed Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), failure to diagnose or a delay in diagnosies are two of the most common types of medical negligence that can lead to a medical malpractice claim. Oftentimes, symptoms and differing diagnoses can be overlooked, leading to worsening health before the patient can finally receive the treatment he or she needs. If you think a health care professional failed to properly diagnose or delayed diagnosing a medical issue, contact an experienced medical malpractice attorney who will investigate the facts further.

I signed a consent form prior to my procedure. Could I still pursue a medical malpractice claim?

Informed consent is an important part of the patient‐physician relationship. Informed consent means that a physician must inform the patient of all material risks, complications, facts, and benefits involved in any proposed, nonemergency surgical treatment, so that the patient can make an informed decision about whether to undergo surgical intervention. Doctors in Pennsylvania have an affirmative duty to obtain their patients’ informed consent, and this duty cannot be delegated to anyone else. You can still pursue a medical malpractice claim even if a consent form was signed. A consent form does not release the medical provider of liability for negligence. As in all medical malpractice cases, the plaintiff must prove that the health care professional failed to meet the standard of care, which caused or increased the risk of injury.

How does a jury decide if the defendant is negligent?

A jury is a group of people summoned and sworn to decide on the facts in issue at a trial. The jury is composed of people who represent a cross-section of the community. The jury listens to the evidence during a trial and decides what facts the evidence has established to form the basis for their decision. A jury will consider the testimony of experts, usually doctors, who will testify whether they believe a physician’s actions followed standard medical practices or fell below the accepted standard of care. Other witnesses may include family members and life care planners who can testify to the impact the injuries have had on the plaintiff’s life.
After both sides, plaintiff and defendant, have had a chance to present their evidence and make a closing argument, the next step toward a verdict is jury instruction – a process in which the judge gives the jury the set of legal standards it will need to decide whether the defendant should be held accountable for the plaintiff’s alleged harm. In civil cases, the jury decides whether a defendant is “liable” or “not liable.”
The jurors as a group consider the case through a process called “deliberation,” attempting to agree on whether the defendant should be held liable based on the plaintiff’s claims, and, if so, the appropriate damages that should be awarded. Deliberation is the first opportunity for the jury to discuss the case, a methodical process that can last from a few hours to several weeks. Once the jury reaches a decision, the jury foreperson informs the judge, and the judge usually announces the verdict in open court.
When a jury holds a doctor or hospital accountable for their negligence, it tells them, and others in their profession, that they must pay attention to safety or be held accountable for the harm caused. The jury is the voice of the community and jury verdicts play an important part in safety reforms.

How do I know how much a medical malpractice case is worth?

It is very difficult to predict how much a medical malpractice claim is worth. Each case is unique, and there is no predetermined amount or formula that defendants or juries use for non-economic damages (see section on types of damages in a personal injury case). We need to prove liability (that there was a breach of the duty of care owed by a doctor to a patient and, that the breach of the duty led to the injury, as well as damages. The experienced team of attorneys at Atlee Hall will investigate cases to determine liability will gather evidence to support the nature and extent of the damages. Our team will guide you based on our experience.

How long do I have to file a medical malpractice claim in Pennsylvania?

Generally, the statute of limitations for a medical malpractice claim in Pennsylvania is two years from the date of injury. There may be exceptions in medical malpractice cases where the deadline for filing may be extended if you did not discover the injury until much later after the actual event. Another exception is the injury of a minor. A case can be filed on behalf of a minor up to two years after his or her 18th birthday. It is important, therefore, to contact an attorney as soon as possible after the date of the incident who can look at the details of your case to determine when the statute of limitations expires.

What damages are recoverable in a Medical Malpractice claim?

In the state of Pennsylvania, compensation for personal injury that individuals can recover (referred to as damages) are broken down into different classes. There are four main categories and recovery depends on each person’s specific situation:
Economic Damages – These are intended to compensate you for present and future lost monetary expenses. Medical bills, lost wages, lost future earning capacity, and out-of-pocket expenses, such as maintenance services you can no longer perform on your own, are all classified as economic damages.
Non-Economic Damages – These can be more difficult to determine because they are not tangible losses like economic damages. In Pennsylvania, non-economic damages include compensation for pain and suffering, scarring and disfigurement, embarrassment and humiliation, and the loss of enjoyment of life. At trial, a jury will consider factors such as the severity of the injury, the permanency of the injury, the duration and extent of the party’s pain and suffering, and the party’s age and life circumstance, among others, to determine the amount of noneconomic damages that are recoverable.
Wrongful Death and Survival Damages – Wrongful death damages are those that can be recovered by the decedent’s surviving family members, such as a spouse, child or parent. Types of recoverable damages in a wrongful death lawsuit include medical, funeral and estate expenses, loss of future support and/or clothing, education, shelter and food contributions of the decedent, among others. Survival damages are those are recovered on behalf of the person who passed away. Types of survival damages that can be recovered include the loved one’s conscious pain and suffering prior to death and the loved one’s lost earnings.
Loss of Consortium – If you are married, your spouse may be entitled to a loss of consortium claim. This type of claim is designed to compensate the spouse of the injured person for loss of services and companionship. More specifically, these damages include the loss of company, society, cooperation, affection, support, comfort, assistance, association, companionship, and the loss of ability to engage in sexual relations.
While damages are obviously a crucial part of any personal injury case, the types of compensation and how much you can recover will depend on your specific circumstances. In addition, none of these damages are recoverable if a breach in the standard of care as well as causation cannot first be proven or established. It is important to contact an attorney who can help guide you.

Defective Products

What is a defective products claim?

Products liability is a claim against a manufacturer, distributor, supplier, or retailer, for placing a defective or dangerous product in the hands of the consumer, which caused the consumer harm. These claims can involve many types of products, including consumer products, medical devices, or vehicles.
In general terms, the law in Pennsylvania requires that a product meet the ordinary expectations of the consumer or that the risks of the product do not outweigh its benefits. When a product has an unexpected defect or danger, the product cannot be said to meet the ordinary expectations of the consumer. Because there is no federal product liability law, typically, product liability claims are based on state laws and brought under the theories of negligence, strict liability, or breach of warranty.

What are some of the types of a product defect claim?

Under any theory of liability, a plaintiff in a product liability case must prove that the product that caused injury was defective. There are several types of defects that might cause injury or harm and give rise to manufacturer or supplier liability:
Design Defects – These are present in a product from the beginning, even before the product is manufactured, in that something in the design of the product is inherently unsafe (see m.chimaera/Sorin 3T).
Manufacturing Defects – These occur in the course of a product’s manufacture or assembly (see crashworthiness).
Failure to Warn – By their nature, some products simply cannot be made safer without losing their usefulness, for example, kitchen appliances and construction tools. For such products, the general position is that users and consumers are the best equipped to minimize risk. Manufacturers and suppliers of unavoidably unsafe products must give proper warnings of the dangers and risks of their products so that consumers can make informed decisions and take proper precautions in their use.

Who’s responsible for a defective product?

The rule that helps plaintiffs in product liability cases is that of strict liability. If strict liability applies, the plaintiff does not need to prove that a manufacturer was negligent, but only that the product was defective. By eliminating the issue of manufacturer fault, the concept of no-fault, or “strict” liability allows plaintiffs to recover where they otherwise might not.
That said, see section 5 below in relation to prescription drugs and medical devices.

What should I do if I have been injured by a product?

Product liability actions can be complex, and establishing legal fault often requires the assistance and testimony of experts. Additionally, every state has its own laws and specific statutes that will affect a product liability action. If you or a loved one has suffered an injury caused by a potentially defective product, an experienced product liability attorney will be able to protect your interests.

Can prescription drugs and medical devices be considered defective?

This is a very complex question which depends upon the type of medical device or product, the type of prescription drug, and the type of strict liability claim (defect, manufacture, or warning).
In general, pharmaceutical companies are not immune to product liability claims in Pennsylvania for all defective drugs or medical devices.
Pennsylvania law has recognized an exemption from strict liability for prescription drug manufacturers for “unavoidably unsafe products,” or those which bear inherent risks—such as medicines which must be prescribed by a doctor. In prescription drug cases, a drug manufacturer may be sued for failing to adequately warn of dangers or potential complications of a drug.
A less settled question is whether the exemption from strict product liability extends to manufacturers of prescription medical devices. , specifically regarding manufacturing defect claims. In a recent federal case involving pelvic mesh, Rosenberg v. C.R. Bard, Inc., 2019 WL 2596358 (E.D. Pa. 2019), the Eastern District of Pennsylvania asked the Third Circuit the question of whether Pennsylvania recognizes a strict liability claim for a manufacturing defect of a prescription medical device and the outcome is awaited. In dismissing the plaintiff’s strict liability claims, the judge opined that, “…no meaningful distinction can be drawn between prescription drugs and prescription medical devices,” and predicted this reasoning would be extended again. While the Third Circuit’s decision will settle the law in federal actions filed in Pennsylvania, the Pennsylvania state courts will have to decide whether to follow the Third Circuit’s decision when it is rendered.

Liquor Liability

What is Liquor Liability?

Liquor liability and dram shop laws are in essence the same thing. The Pennsylvania Liquor Code states that it is unlawful for any establishment holding a liquor license to serve or distribute alcoholic beverages to a minor or a visibly intoxicated person. Dram shop is a legal term that applies to bars, taverns, pubs, and similar venues where alcoholic beverages are served. The law is intended to protect the community from customers being over-served and either injuring themselves or others while intoxicated, whether it is behind the wheel of a car, in a fight with another individual, or any other harm caused by their alcohol-impaired state. Failure to follow the liquor laws can result in liability for a bar, restaurant, or tavern.

How can it be proven that a visibly intoxicated person was over served?

The key term is “visibly intoxicated”. One of the difficulties is that intoxication can manifest itself differently in different individuals. There are some obvious signs such as slurred speech and difficulty walking. The signs of intoxication must be visible to the server when the person orders the drinks. A person may be involved in a vehicle crash after leaving an establishment but if they were not visibly intoxicated at the time they were served, liquor laws would not apply. Experienced attorneys are able to help in collecting evidence, such as video surveillance and eye witness testimony, to help prove that a patron was over served. What is required in such cases is not proof beyond a reasonable doubt but rather whether it was more likely than not that a visibly intoxicated person was served alcohol. The blood alcohol level alone of the intoxicated individual at the time of the crash may not be sufficient to prove the patron was visibly intoxicated when served their drink.

What if someone else buys the drinks?

The liquor laws only apply when a direct sale of alcohol is made to an intoxicated individual. If a sober person purchases drinks to take back to their table of friends and some people at the table are intoxicated, the bartender has no way of knowing the condition of the rest of the party at the table and sold alcohol to a sober person. If someone at that table ends up in a car crash, the establishment is not held responsible.

Why do dram shop laws exist?

Proponents of dram shop laws argue that these laws reduce alcohol-related car crashes by increasing public awareness of the effects of over-serving alcohol and decreasing excessive and illegal alcohol consumption. The goal is to give establishments that serve and sell alcohol an incentive to do so responsibly and to thoroughly verify that patron are of legal drinking age. Before dram shop laws, alcoholic beverage sellers were not legally responsible for a plaintiff’s injuries. When a drunk driver causes an accident, the results are often catastrophic. Since alcohol intake is linked with inhibited judgment and delayed reactions, a drunk driver who causes a crash may be traveling at a higher speed than a driver who is more alert. As such, the policy limits on an automobile insurance policy may not be adequate to fully compensate a victim for the injuries that he or she suffers. Dram shop liability allows a victim to pursue compensation from a business to receive compensation for the injuries that he or she has suffered.

What happens to establishments sued for over serving a customer?

There are a variety of outcomes for an establishment that over serves a customer including being legally and financially held responsible for its actions. An outcome that is almost certain is that safety protocols will be examined and adjusted to help prevent future incidents.

Do businesses have liquor liability insurance?

Liquor liability insurance policies are purchased by businesses that manufacture, serve, or sell alcohol. These policies provide coverage for legal or medical fees associated with over serving a visibly intoxicated person.

When should a liquor liability attorney be contacted?

It is important that a victim speak immediately to a personal injury lawyer to preserve his or her rights (or the rights of a loved one) if he or she has been the victim of a drunk driving crash or harmed by a visibly intoxicated person. Early investigation and preservation of key evidence offers higher likelihood of proving that a person was over served by an establishment.

Crashworthiness

What is crashworthiness?

Automobile accidents are foreseeable events. Vehicle manufacturers have a legal duty to the public to design their vehicles to be crashworthy. Crashworthiness is the ability of a vehicle to prevent injuries to the occupants in the event of a collision. In other words, the degree to which a vehicle will protect its occupants from the effects of an accident. During a collision, a vehicle’s occupants are subject to a number of forces that can result in injury, including rapid deceleration and acceleration, depending on the direction of impact in the collision. Crashworthiness deals primarily with the “second collision” that results from these forces, in which the driver and passengers collide against the interior of the vehicle. An effective crashworthy vehicle design will distribute these injurious forces over as great a period of time and distance as possible.
Manufacturers must test all vehicles for crashworthiness before they enter the marketplace. Car defects can result in a vehicle that does not provide adequate protection from the force of a collision. If you sustain injuries in a car crash due to the vehicle’s lack of crashworthiness, then you may have a claim against the vehicle’s manufacturer.

What parts of a vehicle are subject to crashworthiness?

Examples of crashworthiness features, which are designed to minimize occupant injuries, include: seats, seat belts, seat backs, tires, gas tanks, side impact protection, door latches, roofs, and, airbags (including side impact protection). There are many more, including technology designed to improve driver safety, but these features may fail to operate as they should, thereby causing injury to the vehicle’s occupant. Examples include lane keep assist, blind spot detection systems, and adaptive cruise control.

Who is liable in a crashworthiness case?

The concept of crashworthiness can be used to hold a vehicle manufacturer liable for injuries sustained in a vehicle crash because of a defect that may have been the cause of the crash itself or caused or made injuries worse. Crashworthiness is concerned with whether the manufacturer designed the vehicle and its components so that it is safe for use. Accidents are foreseeable and automobiles must be designed to protect people involved in accidents.

What do I need to prove?

In order to be successful in a claim based on a motor vehicle’s crashworthiness, you will likely need to show that a design feature caused or worsened an injury in vehicle crash. One of the most effective ways to establish this is to show that a safety device was available, and that such a device could have and should have been used in the vehicle because, for example, it was widely available in other models or in vehicles in a similar class. An experienced product liability attorney will consider all legal options and will enlist the help of expert vehicle design and safety consultants in order to ensure that your rights are fully protected.

What should I do if I think my vehicle has a defect?

Not everyone is aware that a vehicle crash may have been as a result of a vehicle design defect, that their injuries were made worse because of an unsafe design, or that a safer alternative design would have reduced their injuries. If you have been in a car crash and you think your vehicle’s crashworthiness may have caused or worsened your injuries, you should speak to an attorney who has experience in this area. Anytime someone is killed or catastrophically injured in a car accident, a crashworthiness claim should be considered and investigated. It is critical that the vehicles involved be preserved and maintained in their post-crash condition. It is also very important to document physical evidence at the scene, markings on the roadway, and obtain witness statements. Atlee Hall has proven success against vehicle manufacturers, which has resulted in enhanced vehicle safety and achieving justice for our clients who put their faith in the manufacturer and safety of their vehicle.

Tractor Trailer Crashes

How is a tractor trailer crash different from a car crash?

Tractor trailer, or trucking, crashes differ from car crashes in several ways. Not only are injuries typically much more catastrophic, but oftentimes, there are multiple defendants that have to be investigated – it’s not as simple as just holding the truck driver liable for his or her negligence. The parties can include the broker, distributor, the owner of the goods being shipped, the owner of the truck, and the driver. Corporate structures can be complex and have to be untangled. There are also legal requirements that a trucking company and truck driver have to comply with that don’t apply to other vehicles. Tractor trailer crashes often involve complex relationships and insurance policies and, therefore, require specific attorney experience. All trucking companies and truck drivers must comply with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations.

What is considered when determining who is at fault in a trucking case?

Experienced trucking attorneys will work with experts to investigate the scene of a crash including eyewitness testimony, police reports, and the vehicles themselves. They will also employ forensic experts to investigate the vehicle data. Often, the truck driver him or herself is not the one financially responsible; he or she may have caused the crash, but maybe the driver was forced to drive long hours because of pressure from an employer to make a delivery time, lacked proper training or the equipment was not safe to operate. There are a number of other issues to look at, such as trucking company driver training, driver qualifications, driver logbooks, supervision, etc. There are a very specialized set of regulations when it comes to dealing with trucking companies. All of these considerations come into play when determining liability.

How common are trucking crashes and why do they cause such catastrophic injuries?

Pennsylvania is currently in the top five states in the nation for the number of trucking crashes, causing over 200 fatalities each year. The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) estimates that there are almost 7,000 heavy truck crashes per year. Also referred to as big-rigs, semis, and 18-wheelers, tractor-trailers are the most common of all commercial trucks. They are also the largest and pose the most risk to other motorists on the road. The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates tractor-trailers weigh at least 20 times more than the average passenger vehicle. They can weight up to 80,000 pounds, about 30 times more than a small passenger vehicle, when fully loaded. Most semis have a cab and a trailer, but on rare occasions you might see a double trailer. They often travel at high speeds on highways, requiring over 350 feet to come to a full stop. Due to the weight and force, it is more common for injuries to be far more significant than those sustained during a passenger vehicle crash.

What are common causes of trucking crashes?

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMSCA) is responsible for regulating the trucking industry, which includes any driver who holds a commercial driver’s license (CDL) or company that employs drivers. The FMSCA estimates over 400,000 traffic collisions each year involving heavy trucks. Common causes of tractor-trailer collisions include:
Driving while distracted – When commercial truck drivers, like any drivers, take their minds off driving, hands off the wheel, or eyes off the road, other motorists are put at risk for a serious, or even deadly, crash. The FMSCA has outlawed cell phone use for truckers for over a decade; truckers must use a headset, voice recognition, or some other hands free feature to talk on their phone.
Driving under fatigue – According to the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), more than a third of heavy truck crashes are the result of driver fatigue. Tractor trailer drivers often have demanding schedules, which means driving through the night to meet deadlines. Even though the FMSCA has strict regulations in place for truck drivers’ hours, drivers are commonly under pressure from employers to make delivery times. The FMCSA found that driver alertness was related to time-of-day more so than time-on-task. Most people are less alert at night, especially after midnight. This drowsiness is likely enhanced after having been on the road for an extended period of time. Falling asleep at the wheel of an 18-wheeler can have tragic consequences.
Other causes of trucking crashes include, inadequate driver training, improper maintenance and vehicle malfunction.
It is important to contact an attorney with trucking litigation experience if you or a loved one has been the victim of a tractor trailer crash.

Is the truck driver liable to pay for a claim out of their own pocket?

Often the truck driver him or herself is not the one financially responsible; he or she may have caused the crash, but maybe the driver was forced to drive long hours because of pressure from an employer to make a delivery time. There are a number of other issues to look at, such as trucking company driver training, driver qualifications, driver logbooks, supervision, vehicle maintenance and any defects. There are a very specialized set of regulations when it comes to dealing with trucking companies. All of these considerations come into play when determining liability. In addition, there are likely to be a number of insurance companies involved if there are multiple defendants. This complexity means it is important to contact an experienced attorney.

What should I do if a family member or I have been a victim of a tractor-trailer collision?

First and foremost, seek medical attention. Trucking crashes often result in being hospitalized, but even if you or your loved one was not hospitalized, you need to see a doctor. It is also important to contact an experienced attorney as soon as you are able after a collision. It is important to preserve as much evidence as possible, including physical evidence at the scene, the truck and vehicles involved, data from the crash data recorder and GPS systems in the truck, and the driver’s cell phone. Often times it is necessary to immediately go to court to make sure the trucking company preserves this critical evidence. Insurance companies will want to take a statement after a tractor-trailer crash. To protect your rights, refrain from giving a statement or signing documents until you have consulted an experienced trucking attorney.

How much is my trucking case worth?

Each tractor-trailer case has varying outcomes and therefore there is no average amount for a trucking crash case. Factors to be considered include economic damages, such as past and future medical bills and lost wages, and non-economic damages such as pain and suffering, loss of the ability to enjoy life, stress, anxiety, and the personal damages. Consulting with an attorney that has years of experience with trucking cases will help to determine the value of your case.

Personal Injury

How do I know if I have a personal injury case?

If you feel you may have a personal injury case, you can contact the Atlee Hall team for a free consultation, and we will help evaluate your matter. Atlee Hall’s experienced Investigation Team of Intake Coordinators, Attorneys, and In-House Legal Nurse Consultant will gather your initial information, review the details, and may request further records and expert opinion to help determine whether you have a case.

How long do I have to file a personal injury lawsuit?

The length of time you have to file a claim after an injury differs in each state. In Pennsylvania, a personal injury suit can be filed up to two years from the date of injury. This is known as the statute of limitations. In rare circumstances, there are exceptions to this time limit, for example, in medical malpractice cases, the deadline for filing may be extended if you did not discover the injury until much later after the actual event. Another exception is the injury of a minor. A case can be filed on behalf of a minor up to two years after his or her 18th birthday. It is important, therefore, to contact an attorney as soon as possible after the incident who can look at the details of your case to determine when the statute of limitations expires.

What damages are available in a personal injury case?

In the state of Pennsylvania, compensation for personal injury that individuals can recover (referred to as damages) are broken down into different classes. There are four main categories and recovery depends on each person’s specific situation:
Economic Damages – These are intended to compensate you for present and future lost monetary expenses. Medical bills, lost wages, lost future earning capacity, and out-of-pocket expenses, such as maintenance services you can no longer perform on your own, are all classified as economic damages.
Non-Economic Damages – These can be more difficult to determine because they are not tangible losses like economic damages. In Pennsylvania, non-economic damages include compensation for pain and suffering, scarring and disfigurement, embarrassment and humiliation, and the loss of enjoyment of life. At trial, a jury will consider factors such as the severity of the injury, the permanency of the injury, the duration and extent of the party’s pain and suffering, and the party’s age and life circumstance, among others, to determine the amount of noneconomic damages that are recoverable.
Wrongful Death and Survival Damages – Wrongful death damages are those that can be recovered by the decedent’s surviving family members, such as a spouse, child or parent. Types of recoverable damages in a wrongful death lawsuit include medical, funeral and estate expenses, loss of future support and/or clothing, education, shelter and food contributions of the decedent, among others. Survival damages are those are recovered on behalf of the person who passed away. Types of survival damages that can be recovered include the loved one’s conscious pain and suffering prior to death and the loved one’s lost earnings.
Loss of Consortium – If you are married, your spouse may be entitled to a loss of consortium claim. This type of claim is designed to compensate the spouse of the injured person for loss of services and companionship. More specifically, these damages include the loss of company, society, cooperation, affection, support, comfort, assistance, association, companionship, and the loss of ability to engage in sexual relations.
While damages are obviously a crucial part of any personal injury case, the types of compensation and how much you can recover will depend on your specific circumstances. In addition, none of these damages are recoverable if a breach in the standard of care as well as causation cannot first be proven or established. It is important to contact an attorney who can help guide you.

How much does it cost to pursue a personal injury case?

At Atlee Hall, our attorneys work on a contingency fee basis. This means we do not collect a fee or recover the costs we have advanced on your behalf in preparation of your case unless we obtain a settlement or a verdict for you. You pay nothing up front or out of your own pocket. If we do not obtain a settlement or verdict for you, Atlee Hall does not take a fee or recover our costs. In addition, we do not charge a fee for consultations. If you think you may have a personal injury case, please get in touch.

How long will it take for my case to resolve?

The length of a case from intake to resolution can vary greatly. No two cases are the same, with different fact patterns, parties involved, injuries, and circumstances surrounding the injury. Atlee Hall’s attorneys communicate closely with clients to help you understand the process and what to expect during your case.

How much is my case worth?

It is very difficult to predict how much a personal injury claim is worth. Each case is unique and there is no predetermined amount or formula that defendants, insurance companies, or juries use for non-economic damages (see section 3 on types of damages in a personal injury case). We first need to prove liability (that there was a breach of the duty of care owed, for example, by a doctor to a patient, or by a driver to other road-users, and that the breach of the duty led to the injury sustained. Once those elements are proven, we need to establish the nature and extent of the damages. The experienced team of attorneys at Atlee Hall will investigate cases to determine liability and will gather evidence to support the level of damages. Our team will guide you based on our experience.

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