Is Medical Malpractice Common?

At O’Malley & Perry Law we have over 40 years of experience handling medical malpractice or medical negligence cases.

If you have been injured due to the substandard or unethical care of a doctor, health care professional or hospital, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries. At O’Malley & Perry Law, we believe that healthcare providers who fail to live up to the ethical standards of their practice and cause harm to a patient must be held accountable under the law.

You may think that medical errors are uncommon but a study from Johns Hopkins in 2016 found that medical errors were the 3rd leading cause of death in the United States. When a doctor fails to abide by established care in the diagnosis, treatment, testing, and follow-up of a patient, it can lead to injuries, complications, and even death.

Many different behaviors by healthcare providers can be considered negligence under the law, and consequently, malpractice:

  • Misdiagnosis
  • Failure to recognize symptoms
  • Failure to treat complications
  • Failure to make a specialist referral
  • Misreading or ignoring lab reports
  • Surgical errors
  • Prescribing the wrong medications or dosages
  • Premature discharge
  • Failure to perform follow-up care
  • Birth Injury

Proving Malpractice

A patient has the right to expect a level of care that is ethical, qualified, and to the standards of care of the provider’s particular field. When this doesn’t happen, a medical malpractice claim can be brought to prove that the health care provider did not perform to those standards and did not act in a way that was reasonable for a professional of their training and experience.

In order to prove medical malpractice under PA Law it is necessary to establish that the healthcare provider failed to exercise that degree of care, skill, and learning expected of a reasonable, prudent health care provider in the profession or class to which he belongs within the state acting in the same or similar circumstances.

There is also a requirement that the substandard care and/or treatment was a proximate cause of the injury, this is also known as “causation” in the legal world. The law places the burden of proof on the injured party to prove that negligence was a factor in their injuries. If you have been injured by the negligence of a doctor or other health care provider, it is critical to have the assistance of a skilled medical malpractice lawyer offering professional legal guidance.

MATTHEW J. PERRY

Partner

If you find this content valuable, please share with colleagues and friends on your favorite channel below:


What Are Common Causes of Truck Accidents?

Like all motor vehicle accidents, there are many different factors that cause truck crashes. But with large truck accidents, these causes can often be even more complex and involve numerous at-fault parties. These are some of the most common truck accident causes:

  • Dangerous actions taken by truck drivers, such as driving drunk, speeding, or improperly handling their vehicles.
  • Truck drivers who violate state and federal regulations, including the Hours-of-Service rules and guidelines regarding work schedules.
  • Trucking companies who incentivize or threaten drivers into breaking the law, leading to dangerous behavior on the road.
  • Failing truck parts that cause the driver to lose control or the big rig to break down on the road. This can lead to major incidents like a jackknife or a runaway trailer.
  • Dangerous roads that are either poorly designed or that have been seriously damaged and left unrepaired by responsible government agencies.
  • Other passenger vehicle drivers who act recklessly, leading to a chain reaction on the road that involves a tractor trailer.

In addition, large commercial trucks have blind spots. The largest blind spot on a truck is on the right-hand side. With only a mirror and the driver sitting on the other side of the truck, this no-zone begins at the mirror of the cab and extends almost the entire length of the truck. It also extends across one entire lane on that side. For this reason, drivers should avoid passing a truck on the right-hand side.

The left-hand side of the truck also has a blind spot beginning at the side mirror and extending the full length of the cab of the truck. If you cannot see the trucker’s face, the truck driver cannot see you, either. Directly behind the truck is another no-zone, one that extends up to 200 feet. Being in this no-zone also makes it more difficult for you to see what’s ahead and reduces your reaction time. Trucks also have a no-zone directly in front of them. This blind spot extends up to 20 feet. Because a truck’s driver sits higher than other vehicles, it can be difficult to see what is in front of the truck. Cutting off a truck can be dangerous, because the truck driver may not know a vehicle has moved into that spot.

Although these no-zones are large, truck drivers are still responsible for knowing how to work with them and around them to ensure everyone is safe. When they do not, they can still be held liable, even if a vehicle was in their no-zone.

MATTHEW J. PERRY

Partner

If you find this content valuable, please share with colleagues and friends on your favorite channel below:


Have You Been a Victim of a Slip or Trip and Fall?

If you or a loved one slips and falls due to a hazardous or dangerous condition on someone else’s property, and the property owner ignored or failed to remedy the dangerous condition in good time, the accident victim could have a case for a personal injury claim.

Slips and/or trip and falls can happen in many different circumstances and due to a number of causes.
Typically, falls involve a person losing traction on a walking surface or tripping over an object or steps. While some falls can occur from a certain height, for example, while a victim is on a ladder or roof, some happen on a level surface due to one of the following reasons:

  • Wet floor
  • Snow or ice on the ground
  • Oily surfaces
  • Spills or debris on the floor
  • Torn or loose carpeting
  • Broken flooring
  • Loose rugs
  • Poor lighting
  • Uncovered cables
  • Uneven or missing steps
  • Missing or broken handrails
  • Potholes
  • Broken or uneven sidewalks

If you suffered any injuries on someone else’s property you should consult with a slip and fall accident lawyer as you may have legal options. You may be entitled to receive money for your injuries.

Types of Injuries That Can Occur After a Fall

Falls can be painful as well as cause long-lasting and sometimes debilitating injuries. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimate that one out of every five falls leads to a severe injury, like a traumatic brain injury or a broken hip.

This figure does not include the countless injuries and resulting medical expenses suffered by people going about their daily lives and slipping or tripping outside of work. Slips and falls can occur anywhere, such as malls, grocery stores, in an apartment building, and even while at work. According to Workplace Health & Safety, slip and fall injuries account for a large portion of injuries experienced by health care workers in nursing homes.

According to the Mayo Clinic, falling can put you at risk of serious injury. Some of the more serious injuries in a slip and fall can include:

  • Soft tissue injuries
  • Head and brain injuries
  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Back injuries
  • Fractures

Some of these injuries may need extensive and long-term medical treatments. They may also require considerable time off work for recovery. If someone else’s carelessness has caused you or a loved one to suffer from any serious injuries, it is only fair that they pay for your damages.

However, it is pivotal that you see a doctor as soon as you can after a slip and fall injury. Not only will you want to make sure that a doctor takes care of your injuries but a medical report detailing your injuries will also be important evidence if you are considering filing a lawsuit later on.

Compensation

If you or a relative suffered harm due to a property owner’s negligence, you could potentially receive various types of compensation for your injuries and your suffering. Compensation can include, but is not limited to:

  • Medical bills
  • Lost income
  • Physical pain
  • Loss of life quality

However, you can only recover compensation when you can prove someone else is responsible for your accident. It can be tough to prove negligence in slip and fall cases, and you will need to have compelling evidence to show fault. A slip and fall accident lawyer can be by your side every step of the way and help you navigate the legal issues around your claim.

If you have any questions about how slip and fall accidents occur, and whether you might have a personal injury claim, you should contact us for a free, no-obligation consultation. Slip and fall litigation can be complex, and a property owner may fight your claim with their lawyers.

You do not have to stand up to a property owner or business on your own. O’Malley & Perry will help you with all aspects of a slip and fall case. We can fight for your rights as well as compensation for your injuries. Ways in which we can help you with your case can include:

  • Comprehensive legal advice and representation
  • Gathering the necessary evidence to build your case
  • Providing expert witnesses if needed
  • Negotiating a settlement with insurances and defendants
  • Representing you professionally in a court of law

You will not have to pay any up-front fees if you work with us because we work on contingency. Call O’Malley & Perry today and let us determine whether you have a case and what your best next steps may be. You can reach us at 570-348-3711.

MATTHEW J. PERRY

Partner

If you find this content valuable, please share with colleagues and friends on your favorite channel below:


Road Fatality Increase in First Half of 2021

In an October 28, 2021 post to their homepage, The U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (“NHSTA”) released a study that indicated an estimated 20,160 people died in motor vehicle crashes in the first half of 2021, up 18.4% over 2020. That’s the largest number of projected fatalities in that time period since 2006!

Dr. Steven Cliff from the NHSTA said that the report is a reminder of what hundreds of millions of people can do every day, right now, to combat this: Slow down, wear seat belts, drive sober, and avoid distractions behind the wheel.

Citing the aforementioned study the article indicates that preliminary data from the Federal Highway Administration show that vehicle miles traveled in the first half of 2021 increased by about 173.1 billion miles, or about 13%. The fatality rate for the first half of 2021 increased to 1.34 fatalities per 100 million VMT, up from the projected rate of 1.28 fatalities per 100 million VMT in the first half of 2020.

In line with Dr. Cliff’s recommendations to combat unsafe driving, the USDOT is developing a strategy that will be rooted in the Safe System Approach principles and identifies significant actions the Department will take to help ensure: Safer People, Safer Roads, Safer Vehicles, Safer Speeds, and Post-Crash Care. The strategy will focus on new priorities that target our most significant and urgent problems, and are expected to have the most substantial impact.  (See full article at https://www.nhtsa.gov/press-releases/usdot-releases-new-data-showing-road-fatalities-spiked-first-half-2021)

If you have been injured in a car, truck or motorcycle accident, contact an expert attorney at O’Malley & Perry Law today.

MATTHEW J. PERRY

Partner

If you find this content valuable, please share with colleagues and friends on your favorite channel below:


Auto Accident Keeping You Out of Work? We Can Help

“I can’t work anymore because of an injury in an Auto Accident! What can I do?”

If you have suffered injuries in a Pennsylvania car accident and need money to cover expensive medical bills and lost wages, you may not know what to do or who to turn to for help. 

If you are worried about getting the money and benefits you are entitled to from the insurance company, our team of personal injury lawyers that handles car accidents all across the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania would be happy to review your case and get to work on pursuing compensation on your behalf immediately. 

Put O’Malley & Perry’s 50+ Years of Experience to Work for You

O’Malley & Perry has represented thousands of clients in motor vehicle accidents throughout Pennsylvania for more than 50 years. Our managing partner, Attorney Michael P. Perry, has been recognized as one of the Top Attorneys in Pennsylvania as published in Philadelphia Magazine. 

All of our lawyers are trial attorneys with experience handling cases similar to yours. If we do need to go to trial and represent you to a judge and jury, we will not hesitate to do so. We will pursue the court award you deserve.

We Can Help You Recover Damages from Your Accident

Car accident injuries can range from minor to serious, putting people in the hospital and possibly out of work while they heal from their injuries. This can hurt their income as well as create medical bills and other expenses they may not be able to pay.

A lawyer from O’Malley & Perry can help you seek to recover damages from the insurance company or the liable party who caused your accident. Financial compensation can give you peace of mind knowing that the at-fault party is being held responsible for your injuries. It may also help you and your family to know that you are being compensated for an incident that occurred through no fault of your own. 

Your recoverable damages will depend on the circumstances of your case. In general, you could be compensated for your monetary and non-monetary damages.

Monetary Damages Include:

  • Past, current, and future medical costs
  • Current and future lost wages
  • Reduced earning ability
  • Property repair or replacement

Non-Monetary Damages Include:

  • Pain and suffering
  • Emotional distress
  • Physical impairment, scarring, disfigurement
  • Loss of companionship

If your loved one died in a car accident in the Pennsylvania, you might be able to pursue a wrongful death lawsuit to recover damages, such as:

  • Final medical bills the decedent paid or bills that were paid on their behalf
  • Funeral, cremation, or burial costs
  • Your loved one’s pain and suffering before their death
  • Loss of companionship

We know how stressful it can be to need money to pay for your medical care and other bills and also be out of work because of your injuries. The expenses can add up quickly, and you should not be stuck paying them out of your own pocket for the injuries you sustained as a result of someone else’s negligence.

We understand the complexities associated with the process of calculating damages. We will go through it with you step-by-step and will work with you to help you understand the potential settlement value of your case. Then, we can handle settlement negotiations on your behalf.

We encourage all accident victims to discuss their case with a car accident attorney before agreeing to a settlement.

How will My Lawyer Calculate My Car Accident Damages?

Calculating damages, or the amount of money that you should be compensated as a result of the injuries you sustained is one of the most important parts of building your case. Forgetting to include damages, misplacing bills or receipts, overlooking expenses, and failing to put an accurate price on things could lead you to agree to a settlement that does not cover your current expenses or leaves you paying for future expenses out of your own pocket.

When our lawyer takes on your Pennsylvania car accident case, a part of our job is to gather evidence and take a full accounting of your damages. This is necessary before we file an insurance claim on your behalf because we need to know what a fair settlement offer will look like before we seek a payout from the insurer.

As a part of this process, we will take steps to identify your full range of expenses and losses and document them. This may require us to:

  • Retrieve copies of all accident-related medical bills
  • Catalog all treatment-related expenses, including medical equipment rentals, medication, and other items
  • Obtain information about your normal pay, documenting your time away from work, and calculating lost wages
  • Determine if you will likely return to your previous job in the future
  • Look at repair estimates for your vehicle or calculating a fair replacement cost
  • Consider other expenses related to your accident, injuries, or treatment

Because we want to recover the full value of your losses and use the amount of your economic damages to help calculate your non-economic damages, when available, it is imperative that we identify and document as many expenses related to your accident as possible. Some often-overlooked expenses may include:

  • Parking at the doctor’s office or hospital
  • Taking an Uber, Lyft, taxi, or bus to appointments because of damage to your car
  • Rental car costs
  • Necessary remodeling to make your home wheelchair-accessible
  • Repair or replacement of personal items, including your smartphone, eyeglasses, laptop, or other items in your vehicle at the time of the accident

Once we have a good idea of all your accident-related expenses and losses, we will add them up to get a fair value for your economic damages. This determines the range we will aim for if you have a limited tort car insurance policy.

If you opted for a full tort car insurance policy, suffered permanent or disfiguring injuries, or meet another exception to limited tort, we will also calculate the value of your non-economic damages, including your pain and suffering losses.

How We Can Help with Your Pennsylvania Car Accident Case

When you agree to let O’Malley & Perry handle your Pennsylvania car accident case, we will manage it entirely. All you need to do is focus on following the recommendations of your treatment providers and healing from your injuries. 

When we take you on as our client, we will:

  • Explain all of your rights and how Pennsylvania law applies to your case
  • Gather evidence that supports your case for damages, including police reports, photos, and video
  • Identify liable parties in your accident and prove their negligence
  • File an insurance claim or civil lawsuit on your behalf, if necessary
  • Negotiate with all parties involved in your case, including other attorneys and insurers
  • Take care of all paperwork and meet all legal deadlines
  • Keep you updated on all case developments

We will Fight to Protect Your Rights

If you retain our firm, we go to work, protecting your rights to compensation for your full range of damages. This is one of the most important roles of a personal injury lawyer.

We want you to be aware that insurance company representatives want to pay out as little as possible! They will try to get you to admit to being partially at fault or make other mistakes that could reduce your claim or hurt your chances of a lawsuit.

Our firm’s lawyer will build a strong case that will support negotiating a settlement with the insurance company or winning your case in court. We can even call in expert witnesses to bolster your case, something you likely would not have the resources to do on your own.

We will Seek to Get You Fair Compensation for Your Injuries

Your attorney will handle all communications and negotiations with the insurance company and its representatives. Of course, if legal action becomes necessary, our car accident lawyer can take legal action on your behalf. 

You May Be Asking, “Can I Afford to Hire a Lawyer?”

Our payment is an agreed-upon percentage of the award our client receives. If we don’t win their case, we do not get paid. We cover all the details of a contingency fee pay arrangement with you upfront before you sign on with us as a client.

What Types of Injury Cases do O’Malley & Perry Lawyers Handle?

Our auto accident attorneys can assist you with any of the following injuries:

  • Brain injury
  • Catastrophic and serious injury
  • Wrongful death
  • Broken bones
  • Scarring
  • Lacerations
  • Bruising
  • Knee injury
  • Shoulder injury
  • Burns
  • Back injury
  • Paralysis
  • Amputation

Call O’Malley & Perry for Help with Your Pennsylvania Car Accident Case! FREE CONSULTATION!

MATTHEW J. PERRY

Partner

If you find this content valuable, please share with colleagues and friends on your favorite channel below:


Legal Advice: How Long Do I Have to File A Personal Injury Lawsuit? (Statute of Limitations)

The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania has what is called a statute of limitations, or in other words, a limited amount of time to file a personal injury lawsuit. In Pennsylvania, most personal injury claims have a two-year time period within which the injured party, their estate or parents/guardians (in the event the injured party is a minor) have to file a lawsuit. There are some limited exceptions to the statute of limitations.

Failure to file a claim or lawsuit within the prescribed time period under the statute of limitations could forever bar you from recovery. The time period usually begins to run on the date the incident occurs. That is why it is very important to discuss your case with an experienced lawyer as soon as possible. These matters are time sensitive! At O’Malley & Perry Law we stand ready to discuss your case and provide you with the expertise and information you need.

MATTHEW J. PERRY

Partner

If you find this content valuable, please share with colleagues and friends on your favorite channel below:


Treatment for Your Injury in a Car or Truck Accident

Car and truck accidents remain an all too common cause of traumatic injury. Overwhelmingly they result in injuries to the neck and back. In our experience we have seen that even minor collisions, especially head on or rear end collisions can result in injury to the neck and back. Additionally, it is typical for those involved in a car accident to not feel pain immediately after the accident. There are many instances that we have seen where individuals did not treat until a few days after the accident because they did not experience any pain initially.

Dr. Michael Freeman and others conducted a case-control study of the relationship between acute whiplash injuries and chronic neck pain. The study revealed to researchers that the foremost cause of chronic neck pain was prior motor vehicle accident injuries: “it reasonable to infer that a significant proportion of individuals with chronic neck pain in the general population were originally injured in a motor vehicle accident. See Chronic neck pain and whiplash: A case-control study of the relationship between acute whiplash injuries and chronic neck pain, Michael D Freeman, Arthur C Croft, Annette M Rossignol, Christopher J Centeno, Whitney L Elkins, Pain Res Manag. 2006 Summer; 11(2): 79–83. doi: 10.1155/2006/304673.

Additionally “the study findings suggest that injuries resulting from MVAs contribute significantly to the population of individuals with chronic spine pain in the United States. Furthermore, individuals with chronic pain in the neck, and neck and back, are more likely to have acquired their pain as a result of an MVA, in comparison with individuals with chronic back pain alone.” Id.

The findings of this study demonstrate the importance of proper treatment for injuries resulting from car and/or truck accidents.

MATTHEW J. PERRY

Partner

If you find this content valuable, please share with colleagues and friends on your favorite channel below:


Auto Insurance: O’Malley & Perry Says – “Choose Full Tort!”

When picking a new car insurance plan, deciding if you want full tort or limited tort is one of the most important choices you will make. In fact, many Pennsylvania drivers aren’t aware of the distinction between the two types of coverages. While Full Tort coverage may be more expensive, it is worth paying the extra premium to ensure that you and your loved ones have this important type of coverage. 

Choosing full tort over limited tort determines to what extent you can sue another driver for damages after an accident. The option you choose is a clause that is written into your car insurance policy that only becomes relevant if you are injured after an accident. If you are injured and you have full tort coverage you can recover for pain and suffering you experienced caused by the collision. If you have limited tort you are unable to recover for pain and suffering unless one of the exceptions applies.

Limited Tort

If you choose limited tort, you are only permitted to recover from another driver in the case of serious impairment, loss of limb, permanent disfigurement, or an injury that prevents you from working for the rest of your lifetime. In some cases, the courts are asked to rule on specific limited tort exceptions.

As mentioned above, there are some exceptions where drivers can enjoy full tort benefits even if they have a limited tort insurance plan. For example, if you are hit by a drunk driver, you have full license to sue them. In addition, motorcyclists who are hit by cars have full tort protection.

Full Tort

If you choose full tort, you are free to sue any driver who has hit you in an auto accident and you can recover for even minor pain and suffering which is very common especially in a rear-end accident. No matter how minor the injury, you have every legal right to litigate when you have full tort coverage!

Whether you need more help deciding between full tort and limited tort, contact the experienced car accident attorneys at O’Malley & Perry Law. 

MATTHEW J. PERRY

Partner

If you find this content valuable, please share with colleagues and friends on your favorite channel below:


DUI Penalties By State – Strictest vs. Most Lenient

A study and subsequent article from August 10, 2017, conducted and written by Alina Comoreanu, Senior Researcher, revealed which states have taken the most aggressive stance against driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol (DUI):

Overall Rank (1=Strictest)  State Total Score  Criminal Penalties Rank  Prevention Rank 
1 Arizona 84.09% 1 2
2 Georgia 70.45% 2 19
3 Alaska 65.00% 3 15
4 Kansas 64.09% 3 19
4 Oklahoma 64.09% 5 11
6 Nebraska 61.82% 6 16
7 Connecticut 60.91% 7 8
8 Utah 60.45% 11 2
9 Delaware 55.91% 10 11
10 West Virginia 54.55% 9 25
11 Colorado 54.09% 14 6
12 Virginia 52.27% 14 11
13 Texas 51.36% 8 36
14 Louisiana 50.91% 14 16
15 Washington 50.45% 20 6
16 Oregon 49.55% 18 19
17 Florida 48.64% 24 5
18 Nevada 46.82% 23 11
19 Illinois 46.36% 31 4
19 Tennessee 46.36% 14 34
21 California 45.45% 19 31
22 Arkansas 43.64% 48 1
22 Massachusetts 43.64% 13 44
24 Iowa 42.73% 11 46
25 Kentucky 42.27% 27 19
26 Hawaii 41.82% 35 9
27 Minnesota 40.45% 27 28
27 South Carolina 40.45% 21 36
29 New Mexico 39.55% 35 19
29 New York 39.55% 24 33
31 New Hampshire 38.64% 35 24
32 Alabama 38.18% 35 25
33 Rhode Island 37.27% 24 38
34 Missouri 36.82% 40 28
35 Maine 36.36% 48 16
35 North Carolina 36.36% 27 38
37 Indiana 35.45% 31 35
37 Wisconsin 35.45% 46 25
37 Wyoming 35.45% 40 32
40 Montana 35.00% 21 47
41 Mississippi 34.09% 48 28
42 Vermont 33.64% 31 41
43 Michigan 30.91% 40 43
43 Pennsylvania 30.91% 46 38
45 New Jersey 30.45% 45 42
46 Maryland 30.00% 51 9
47 Idaho 29.55% 27 49
47 North Dakota 29.55% 40 45
49 Ohio 28.64% 35 47
50 District of Columbia 22.27% 31 50
51 South Dakota 20.45% 40 50

 

You can read the complete article at https://wallethub.com/edu/dui-penalties-by-state/13549 


Multiple DUI Offenses in PA Can Result in a Felony Conviction

Numerous convictions for driving under the influence (“DUI”) in Pennsylvania can result in a felony pursuant to a new law put into effect relatively recently.

As a result of the enactment of this DUI legislation, people who drive under the influence are now subject to felony charges if, on their third DUI conviction, they are found to have driven with a blood-alcohol level of 0.16 or higher or under the influence of a controlled substance. A fourth DUI conviction — regardless of blood alcohol level or substance involved — will now also be considered a felony.

Pennsylvania Parents Against Impaired Driving, an advocacy group of parents who have lost children to DUI incidents, pushed for passage of the new law. Representatives from the group believe that the higher grading of the crime for multiple time offenders and the harsher penalties will deter people from driving while intoxicated within the Commonwealth.

The new law also increases the minimum sentence for past DUI offenders who commit intoxicated vehicular homicide. The penalty with one prior DUI is now five years, while the minimum for an offender with two DUI convictions increases to seven years.

Pennsylvania Parents Against Impaired Driving estimates there are more than 12,000 DUI crashes every year in the Commonwealth, with 9,000 injuries resulting from those and 333 deaths.

MATTHEW J. PERRY

Partner

If you find this content valuable, please share with colleagues and friends on your favorite channel below: