Philadelphia Building Collapse Lawyer

Serving Philadelphia, Pennsylvania & New Jersey

Many people can be seriously injured or killed in sudden building collapses. Most collapses are preventable and may be caused by design defects or mistakes made during construction. If you have suffered serious injuries or have lost your loved one in a building collapse, you have the right to file a personal injury claim against all of the parties who are responsible. Negligent parties whose actions result in a building collapse should be held accountable to those who are harmed by their conduct.

The construction accident attorneys at Raynes & Lawn are highly skilled and experienced in handling complex personal injury claims involving catastrophic collapses. We know how devastating these types of accidents are for the victims and their family members. When you are dealing with the aftermath of a building collapse, you should not have to worry about how you will hold the negligent parties responsible for your losses. Our attorneys are prepared to handle your legal claim for you so that you can concentrate on rebuilding your life.

Causes of building collapses

Building collapses can be caused by numerous problems. Some of the factors that might contribute to a collapse include the following:

  • Architectural design defects
  • Engineering defects
  • Improper building materials
  • Foundation defects
  • Inadequate maintenance/lack of maintenance
  • Improper inspections
  • Fire and water damage

Even when a building was designed well, it can still place tenants and visitors at risk if it is not maintained. The lawyers at Raynes & Lawn understand how to investigate complex building collapses to identify all of the contributing factors. This might allow you to hold each negligent party accountable for his or her wrongful actions.

Building collapse types

Building collapses can occur during construction, in an existing structure, or in an adjacent structure. Collapses that happen during construction place workers who are working on the building at a high risk of serious injuries or death.

Collapses of existing structures can cause injuries and deaths to the people inside. The victims might include residents, customers, office workers, and pedestrians walking by outside of the building at the time of the collapse.

Secondary structures that are adjacent to a collapsed building might be weakened and subsequently collapse themselves. When this happens, people who are working at the site of the initial collapse and those who are trapped inside can be seriously injured or killed.

Red flags that a collapse might occur

Several red flags might indicate that a collapse might occur. Understanding these indicators can help your attorney determine the underlying causes of the collapse and whether or not negligence was involved. Some common red flags of a building collapse include the following:

  • Sagging floors
  • Cracks in columns and walls
  • Concrete deterioration
  • Water or fire damage
  • Large buildups of snow on the roof
  • Cracking sounds
  • Off-level stairs and floors
  • Plaster falling from the walls

If you were inside of a building when it collapsed, you should tell your attorney about any red flags you noticed before it occurred. Bring any documentation that you might have about these types of indicators to our office for a review.

Common injuries in a building collapse

Building collapses are catastrophic events and can cause many different types of serious injuries, including the following:

Building collapse survivors might also contend with emotional trauma for the rest of their lives. People and entities who are responsible for building collapses should be held accountable for their negligent actions.

Damages in a building collapse

The amount of compensation you might expect in a building collapse lawsuit will depend on the particular facts and circumstances of your case. Since the available damages will depend on several factors, the amount of recoverable compensation will vary from case to case.

The compensatory damages in a claim involving a building collapse include damages for both your economic and non-economic losses. Some of the types of economic losses that you might recover include the following:

  • Past medical expenses
  • Future expected medical expenses
  • Past wage losses
  • Reduction in your ability to earn an income
  • Property damage and losses
  • Funeral expenses/burial costs in a wrongful death claim
  • Loss of the income a deceased victim would have contributed over his or her life in a wrongful death claim
  • Lost inheritance rights in a wrongful death claim

Some of the types of non-economic damages that might be available include the following:

  • Physical pain and suffering
  • Loss of your ability to enjoy life
  • Mental anguish/emotional trauma
  • Disfigurement and scarring
  • Loss of consortium/guidance in a wrongful death claim

When to file a claim after a building collapse

If you have suffered injuries or have lost a loved one in a building collapse, it is important for you to talk to an attorney as soon as possible. Pennsylvania and the District of Columbia both have strict statutes of limitations for filing personal injury claims. In Pennsylvania, you must file a claim within two years of your accident and injuries. In the District of Columbia, the statute of limitations is three years. These statutes function as deadlines. If you miss the statute of limitations, your case will likely be dismissed, preventing you from pursuing compensation for your losses.

In practice, it is best to retain a lawyer as soon as possible after a building collapse. As time passes, critical evidence can be lost or spoliated, and witnesses might also move and be difficult to locate. Hiring an attorney early can provide him or her with more time to investigate your case and determine liability.

Contact Raynes & Lawn

The experienced personal injury attorneys at Raynes & Lawn are prepared to fight for your rights to recover compensation after a building collapse. Call us today to schedule a free consultation at 1-800-535-1797.

If you or a loved one has been critically injured due to someone else’s negligence, please click here to fill out the contact form, or call 1-800-535-1797, and someone from our team will be ready to help.

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Philadelphia Office

2400 Market Street, Suite 317
Philadelphia PA 19103
Phone: 1-215-568-6190
Toll-Free: 1-800-535-1797
Fax: 1-215-988-0618

New Jersey Office

10,000 Lincoln Drive E •
One Greentree Ctr, Ste 201
Marlton, NJ 08053-1536
Phone: 1-856-854-1556
Toll-Free: 1-800-535-1797
Fax: 1-215-988-0618