Fatal accident claims life of Verona woman

No matter how much we try to avoid car accidents, no one can ever fully account for another person’s actions on the road. A 28-year-old woman accused of causing a fatal accident in Pennsylvania has been ordered to stand trial on several criminal charges in connection with the accident. The crash occurred after police attempted to stop the woman from driving on the wrong side of the road on Feb. 18. The fatal accident took place when her car struck a 25-year-old woman’s vehicle, killing the other driver at the scene.

The woman is facing 16 criminal charges, including third-degree murder, homicide while driving under the influence, aggravated assault, fleeing and eluding police, drug possession and other charges. The tragedy began when officers apparently saw the woman driving on the wrong side of the road. Police say that after they tried to stop the woman, she began swerving in and out of traffic in an attempt to pass cars. Eventually the woman crashed into the young victim’s car.

The deceased woman’s family may now have the legal right to pursue a wrongful death claim against any party deemed negligent for the fatal accident that took their loved one’s life. While the accused woman is facing Pennsylvania criminal charges, a wrongful death claim could result in reimbursement to the family for financial damages suffered. While a successful claim will not likely ease the grief, it may serve as an additional measure of justice against the wrongful acts of negligent parties.

Source: Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, “Driver to stand trial in fatal Penn Hills crash,” April 21, 2012

Harsh standard in Workers’ Compensation Removed

Recently, Jim Burn of our law firm successfully argued a case before the Pennsylvania Supreme Court and had a very harsh standard removed from certain types of cases in the Workers’ Compensation system. The Court has now eased the burden of proof for Claimants in cases of “mental/physical” injuries. Mental/physical injuries are also described as injuries which occur when a mental stimulus at work causes a trauma that produces physical results. For example, if an individual at work witnesses a traumatic or shocking event and suffers a heart attack, that would be a mental/physical injury.

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