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Kubinski, Susko & Schonthaler offers contingent-fee respresentation for accident and injury cases.

Accidents - Accidents can occur at any time and are often devastating to the victim. Our trial attorneys have considerable experience in successfully handling and litigating accident cases. Whether you have been involved in a bicycle accident, a boating accident, a bus accident, a motorcycle accident, a pedestrian accident, a truck accident, premises liability accident (slip and fall, for instance), a dog bite/attack accident, an accident involving a dangerous product or an accident resulting in death, please call our firm for a free consultation to review your case. Our firm handles accident cases on a contingent-fee basis, which means we are not paid until you receive a verdict or settlement. Often times, accident victims are not aware of the various insurance sources that are available to provide compensation for their injuries, so it is important to review your accident case with a highly-experienced trial attorney.

Personal Injury - Personal injury law involves injury that is caused accidentally or negligently by another's failure to use reasonable care. The definition of reasonable care is determined on a case-by-case basis. A person may be liable for the injury caused through a negligent or reckless action. Intentional actions under certain circumstances can also give rise to liability on the defendant-wrongdoer's part. The injury to the plaintiff must be caused by and be a foreseeable result of the defendant's action. Types of personal injury lawsuits brought include: wrongful death or injury cases arising from automobile, bike and pedestrian collisions, trucking accidents, boat and airplane accidents, motorcycle accidents, construction accidents, premises liability (slip and fall), product liability, nursing home liability, toxic and mass torts, medical malpractice, and other forms of negligence.

The primary aim of tort law is to provide relief for the damages that resulted from the injuries that have occurred and to deter others from committing similar harms. Among the types of damages the injured party may recover are loss of earnings capacity, pain and suffering, and reasonable medical expenses, as well as present and future expected losses. Our firm has extensive experience in successfully representing victims who have been harmed in personal injury situations. We represent victims on a contingent-fee basis and would be pleased to review your case with you. The consultation is free.

Wrongful Death / Survival Actions - The right to bring a wrongful death or a survival action is created by statute. A wrongful death action compensates the survivor's family (spouse, children, or parents of the deceased) for damages they sustained as a result of the decedent's death. A survival action compensates the estate for the pecuniary loss that the decedent suffered. Please call to review your case with one of our highly-experienced trial attorneys at no cost to you.

Employment Law - Discrimination pertaining to race, color, sex, religion, natural origin, age, disability, and pregnancy in the workplace is prohibited by both federal and state laws. Federal and state employment discrimination laws prohibit employers from engaging in unfair employment practices, such as hiring, assigning projects, promoting, compensating, terminating, or harassing employees based on their race, religion, sex, physical disability, national origin or age. In addition, employment law representation can include contract and breach of contract issues, separation and severance issues, as well as covenant non compete issues and sexual harassment. If you believe you are the victim of discrimination, please call our office to review your situation with one of our experienced attorneys.

Medical Malpractice - Our firm represents individuals who have been harmed by medical negligence by doctors and/or hospitals. It is estimated that 98,000 people die each year in U.S. hospitals as the result of medical errors. We have helped patients who have been harmed by medical errors caused by deviations from the standard of care that should have been afforded to them by their health care professionals. If you believe that you or a family member may have been the victim of a medical error or a patient safety rule violation, please contact us for a free consultation. If we accept your case, representation will be provided on a contingent-fee basis.

Workers' Compensation

Criminal Defense / DUI Cases - The areas of criminal defense for which we provide representation includes: white collar crime, arson, embezzlement, fraud, forgery, criminal conspiracy, homicide, vehicular homicide, assault, kidnapping, sexual offenses, burglary, robbery, theft, drug charges and DUI offenses, among others. Attorney Paul Susko has an extensive background providing criminal defense to our clients. In addition, clients benefit from Attorney Susko's years of service as a prosecutor, as well as a special homicide prosecutor. In addition, he has litigated constitutional law issues in Pennsylvania trial and appellate courts that have served to protect the rights of individual citizens who have been subjected to illegal police procedures, notably in the areas of gathering of DUI evidence and in the area of illegally established DUI roadblock arrests. Many criminal cases have been dismissed, often before trial, as a result of challenging the use of prosecution evidence that was either unreliable or gathered illegally.

Unsafe Products - Usually, if a product is defective in the way that it is marketed, manufactured, or designed, and someone is injured as a result of that defect, then the manufacturer, distributor and/or seller of the product are liable, or responsible for consequences of the defect. The courts have however carved out an exception for products considered "unavoidably unsafe."

Civil Rights Law - Civil rights claims involve a very complicated area of law. Usually, there is involved a deprivation of a federal or statutory constitutional right by a governmental actor who is acting under color of state law. The victim of a civil rights violation can pursue remedies in state or federal court under Section 1983. Police misconduct cases (excessive force, false arrest, etc.) are typically filed pursuant to Section 1983, as are First Amendment, Due Process, and Equal Protection cases. Section 1981 protects the rights to make and enforce contracts without discrimination based upon race ancestry or alienage (citizenship) including contracts at will. Section 1982 secures to all citizens the right, enforceable against private as well as public defendants to inherit, purchase, lease, sell, hold and convey real and personal property. If the plaintiff is the prevailing party in a federal civil rights lawsuit, he or she is entitled to seek recovery of attorney fees and costs as part of the recoverable damages. Attorney Susko has considerable experience in the area of Civil Rights Law and has successfully litigated claims in federal Court under Sections 1981, 1982, and 1983 for numerous clients.

Discrimination - The types of discrimination prohibited under federal law include discrimination based upon age, disability, equal compensation, genetic information, national origin, pregnancy, race/color, religion, retaliation, sex, and sexual harassment. If you believe that you are a victim of discrimination prohibited by state or federal statutes, please call our firm for a consultation. Victims of discrimination have the right to file claims and to seek relief/damages through the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and/or the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission (PHRC) in the State of Pennsylvania. If the discrimination claim is not resolved at the agency level, the claimant then has the right to file a discrimination claim in the appropriate court. There are also certain situations where victims of discrimination can file a lawsuit to obtain damages and/or other relief as a result of the discrimination in state or federal court without first filing a claim with the EEOC and/or PHRC, but it is important to know when those particular situations are applicable under the law. Our lawyers have extensive experience in representing victims in discrimination cases.

Real Estate - We provide representation for the purchase, sale, and rental of real estate; financing and refinancing of real estate; examination of titles; boundary line disputes; oil, gas and minerals; quieting titles; and mortgage foreclosures.

Wills and Estates - Our expertise includes the probate and administration of estates; estate and inheritance taxes; estate contests; preparation of wills and trusts; estate planning; and elder law.

Business -
Our areas of expertise include incorporation, limited liability companies, partnerships, sole proprietorships, and commercial litigation.

Estate Contests / Litigation - We represent individuals who want to challenge the validity of a will or some of its terms after the person who made the will has died. Will contests are quite rare. There are just a few legal grounds for challenging a will. The most common are undue influence by someone close to the deceased person, the deceased person's lack of capacity (understanding) when the will was signed, improper execution (signing and witnessing) of the will, or fraud (forgery, for example).

Defamation - A person's good name is the most important asset one can have. The First Amendment can sometimes encourage unconscionable behavior by the press and print media. Libel (written) and slander (verbal) are forms of defamation. A communication is defamatory if it tends to harm the reputation of that person as to lower him or her in the estimation of the community or to deter third persons from associating or dealing with him or her. Closely related causes of action to defamation include invasion of privacy and false light invasion of privacy claims.

Representation in State and Federal Court

Kubinski Susko & Schonthaler
Attorneys and Counselors-At-Law
The Conrad F.A. Brevillier House • 502 Parade Street • Erie, PA 16507 • 814-455-7612 • FAX 814-461-8585 • Disclaimer