Date: April 11, 2012
Posted In: DLP Law

John came down from Massachusetts to visit his sister Sandy in Gouldsboro. John was traveling on Route 84 in Pike County behind a large tractor trailer. Without any warning, several tires on the tractor trailer started to come apart causing the driver of the tractor trailer to lose control. Despite all the good efforts, John was not able to avoid striking the tractor trailer which had started to slide, blocking both lanes of traffic.

             The tractor trailer driver was from New Jersey and was employed by an Indiana corporation. John’s attorney ascertained though a vigorous inspection that the tires on the tractor trailer were worn to the point that they should have been replaced long before the accident.

 ISSUE:          Where would John be able to bring a law suit against the tractor trailer driver’s company for lack of proper maintenance?

 ANSWER:     This is a question of jurisdiction. Jurisdiction is where a law suit can be brought. In this case, none of the potential parties are from the State of Pennsylvania. Nevertheless, because the accident happened in the State of Pennsylvania, John will be able to bring a law suit in either State Court in Milford or Federal Court in the Middle District of Pennsylvania in Scranton which covers the area where the accident took place. John of course would have the option to also sue the truck driver’s company in the State of Indiana. Because all the evidence regarding the accident though was in Pennsylvania, John’s attorney will select Pennsylvania to bring the action in Federal Court. Because of John’s serious injuries, his attorney will be able to allege that John’s injuries exceed $75,000.00 in value, thus allowing Federal jurisdiction to take apply.


Disclaimer: The above article is for instructive purposes only and each case is fact sensitive.  Consultation with an attorney should be obtained instead of reliance upon the legal issues discussed in this column. 





Cal Leventhal
Cal is a graduate of the University of Miami (magna Cum Laude) and attended Loyola and Notre Dame law schools graduating in 1976. He is admitted to the Bars of the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania and both state and federal trial and appellate courts situated in Pennsylvania.