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How to File a Truck Accident Lawsuit in Pennsylvania

Posted in Truck Accidents on Monday, June 24, 2024.

When you incur injuries following a truck accident, you can start a lawsuit by filing a complaint with the Court of Commons Pleas in the county where the incident occurred. However, there are rules of civil procedure to which a filing must conform. These standards mandate the proper forms, sequence of legal actions, and other process-related matters.

When you are wondering how to file a truck accident lawsuit in Pennsylvania, reach out to a skilled attorney. Our lawyers at Soloff & Zervanos are practiced in adhering to the detailed guidelines of the Pennsylvania Code regarding procedure. We also offer legal assistance in evaluating the substantive aspects of your case.

Procedural Rules for Filing a Civil Action Involving a Truck Collision

A civil lawsuit implicating personal injury or property damage should be filed in a Court of Common Pleas, per 42 Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes § 931(a). Though 231 Pennsylvania COD § 1006. (a) designates five bases for the proper venue (i.e., the particular Court of Common Pleas in which the suit may be filed), truck-crash claims are typically filed with the Court of Common Pleas in the county where the accident occurred.

Generally, an injured person’s initial filing takes the form of a complaint. The Pennsylvania Code governs the form of a complaint, requiring the document to start with Notice to Defend language and mandates its content. The Notice to Defend introduction is meant to give the party you are suing notice so they have a chance to answer your claim. People who have been injured and are filing a lawsuit must give the opposing party legal notice by having them served with an original process that meets the conditions of 231 Pennsylvania COD § 402.

These tedious but important rules can make filing a lawsuit cumbersome for those who choose to proceed pro se without the benefit of a lawyer who routinely files these complaints.

Statute of Limitations and Substantive Concerns When Filing Suit

Some laws impact the substance of your suit, which is the facts of your case and their merits, as opposed to its procedural elements. Arguments over substantive issues usually occur after procedural contentions have been settled in court, but they always come after filing a complaint and serving the defense, according to the process established by the Pennsylvania Code.

When a lawyer examines the merits of your truck crash claim, they should confirm that you have filed the complaint within the statute of limitations for actions claiming personal injury and property damage. Pursuant to 42 Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes § 5524 , your complaint must be filed within two years since the truck accident transpired.

An early review of the facts of your case should also consider Pennsylvania’s modified comparative negligence laws fixed by 42 Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes § 7102. That statute clarifies that contributory negligence should not prevent an injured person from receiving or pursuing recovery unless the factfinder attributes more than 50 percent of the fault for their alleged injuries.

Where the negligence of a single defendant, or the aggregate negligence of multiple defendants, makes up more than half of the cause for the complaining party’s harm, the injured person’s contributory negligence only affects the extent of damages they can recover.

A Lawyer Could Help You File Your Truck-Crash Suit and Explain Alternative Options

Filing a civil action for personal injuries or property damage from a truck collision is not only procedurally and substantively trying but also sets litigation into motion. Consulting a lawyer before deciding to proceed could save you the time and headache of figuring out how to file a truck accident lawsuit on your own.

Soloff & Zervanos has lawyers with expertise in bringing your claim to court and arguing it zealously. Our attorneys are also valuable advisors on alternative options that are less expensive and more efficient, such as settlement negotiations or the submission of claims to your insurance company. Contact our firm to schedule a consultation at your convenience.