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A wrongful death claim can be best defined as a civil lawsuit that may be brought to court when the negligence or wrongful act of one party causes the death of another person.

Wrongful Death Claims in Florida
As per Florida Statutes section 768.19, when a person’s death “is caused by the wrongful act, negligence, default, or breach of contract” of another person or some other entity, the estate of the deceased person may bring a civil lawsuit in Florida’s courts, seeking a legal remedy for that death and the losses stemming from it.

Who is entitled to bring a Florida Wrongful Death Claim?
According to Florida law, it is required of the personal representative of the deceased person’s estate to file the wrongful death claim. The personal representative may be named in the deceased person’s will or estate plan. In case there is no will or estate plan, the personal representative needs to be appointed by the court. However, the wrongful death claim is filed on behalf of the deceased person’s estate and any surviving family members. When it comes to the wrongful death claim, the personal representative must list every survivor who has an interest in the case.

Family members who are entitled to recover damages in a Florida wrongful death case include:

  • the deceased person’s spouse, children, and parents, and
  • any blood relative or adoptive sibling who is partly or entirely dependent on the decedent for support or services.

In case a child is born to unmarried parents, the child can recover damages in a wrongful death case if his or her mother dies. In case the child’s father dies, the child can only recover damages if the father had formally recognized the child as his own and was obligated to contribute to the support of the child.

Is there any time limit for filing a Florida Wrongful Death Lawsuit?
Every state has passed laws that set time limits on your right to go to court and file a lawsuit. This type of law is called a statute of limitations. Most states have passed a separate statute that covers wrongful death lawsuits.

A wrongful death lawsuit in Florida needs to be filed within two years of the date of death in most cases. This is as per the Florida Statutes section 95.11(4)(d). The deadline needs to be “tolled,” or postponed, under a few very specific circumstances. A genuine wrongful death attorney can handle the Florida wrongful death cases. They can help you determine exactly when the statute of limitations expires in a certain case. You should follow the deadline set by the statute of limitations, else you could lose your right to bring your wrongful death lawsuit to court.

Damages in Wrongful Death Cases
Since a wrongful death case is a civil claim, it is brought to court by the deceased person’s estate, not by the government. Liability in a wrongful death claim is expressed only in terms of money damages. Though a criminal case related to the death might also be filed in court, it addresses different concerns. It usually does not give way to damages being paid to the estate or the surviving family members.

As per Florida Statutes section 768.21, the state’s rules for awarding damages in a wrongful death lawsuit. Damages that surviving family members might receive in these kinds of cases include:

  • the value of support and services the deceased person had provided to the surviving family member
  • loss of companionship, guidance, and protection provided by the deceased person
  • mental and emotional pain and suffering due to the loss of a child, and
  • medical or funeral expenses any surviving family member has paid for the deceased person.

The deceased person’s estate might also recover certain types of damages. These damages are inclusive of:

  • lost wages, benefits, and other earnings, including the value of lost earnings that the deceased person could reasonably have been expected to make if he or she had lived.
  • missed “prospective net accumulations” of the estate, or the value of earnings the estate could reasonably have been expected to collect if the deceased person had lived, and
  • medical and funeral expenses that were paid by the estate.
  • Loss of any inheritance due to the untimely death
  • the deceased person’s pre-death pain and suffering
  • the medical expenses that the deceased victim incurred as a result of injury prior to death
  • Loss of love and companionship

Statutes of Limitations
If a suit is not filed within the time frame, you will not be able to receive compensation. However, there are certain exceptions. Sometimes a critical discovery about a wrongful death case is made after the statute of limitation has expired. In such cases, those seeking to file a claim for wrongful death may have more time to do so.

As per the Florida Statute § 95.11, a person has to file a claim within 2 years of a wrongful death case. Different types of cases have different statutes of limitations. It is important to understand the statute of limitations since it is key to successfully filing and ultimately winning a claim.

Wrongful Death as a result of Product Liability or Mislabeling
When a piece of machinery malfunctions and then someone gets injured and later dies as a result, it forms a wrongful death case as a result of product liability. These wrongful death cases are common. Plenty of such claims are brought each year against manufacturers due to the improper labeling of products and failure to provide express warnings of potential hazards or known dangers. Thus, when manufacturers produce and sell unsafe products to the general public they need to be held accountable.

What is Auto Accident Fatality?
In a car accident where one party sustains a fatality as a result of the negligence exhibited by an individual, it is called an auto accident fatality case. Such a form of wrongful death might occur due to reckless driving, distracted driving, speeding, driving etc. Call a specialized wrongful death attorney today!

The post How Long Do You Have to File Wrongful Death in Florida? appeared first on Schiffrinpa.

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In Florida, right after a car accident, police and rescue workers are usually called to the scene. The call is more urgent if someone is left injured. An in-depth investigation of the car accident scene is carried out by Florida police. They try their best to determine who is at fault. They detect every illegal activity related to the crash. Overall, they investigate the scene thoroughly.

Usually, police tend to secure the scene with flares. This measure is taken so that other motorists see it in time to avoid crashing into the crashed or semi-crashed vehicles. In case someone is hurt in any way, paramedics or other rescue teams are called by the police. At the time of checking on everyone involved in the crash, police evaluate them for drug or alcohol impairment.

It is then that the police focus on the recording information about the crash site. They usually take measurements, make diagrams, or take photos or video. They take note of common evidence pieces, such as tire marks, broken glass, or vehicle parts, and the patterns of damage on the vehicles themselves. Usually, the police talks to witnesses to get their contact information. They try to find out what the witnesses saw or heard. These are valuable pieces of info that can help police reconstruct an accident scene. This largely helps them to determine the person who is at fault.

It is more than vital to determine what occurred during an auto accident. It is important for insurance companies as well as the drivers involved. There are certain car accidents that lead to exposure to criminal liability. Some car crashes are easier to be figured out and some are not. There are certain drivers who tend to lie about what happened to protect themselves from liability. So, it is important for police and investigators to figure out what happened themselves. They mainly need to work backward and reconstruct the accident. The gathered evidence comes handy here!

Who carries out the duty of investigation?

Most of the auto accidents are investigated by two groups of people. These are Florida police officers and independent accident investigators of Florida.

When police become involved in accident cases, they mainly try to figure out whether any criminal actions occurred during the accident. This type of investigation is common when the police suspect that drug or alcohol use was a factor in the accident. When it comes to situations involving commercial drivers, such cases are usually investigated by independent investigators. The investigators are either hired either by the drivers’ insurance companies or the drivers themselves.

Independent investigators are not looking for evidence of criminal activity. They mainly tend to analyze the causes of accidents. This is to help insurance companies to determine liability and financial responsibly. Independent accident investigators can be off-duty police officers, retired police officers, automotive technologists, or professional accident investigators.

How do they gather evidence?

Most of the accident investigators want to reconstruct the accident. However, for this, they need solid evidence. This evidence mainly arises from inspections of the site of the accident and inspections of the vehicles involved.

How does the inspection of the Accident Site take place?

At the time of arriving at the scene of the accident, the investigator tries to gather a good deal of information about the accident and what occurred. This info includes the following:

  • The exact location of the accident
  • The time the accident too place
  • Who notified the police of the accident and how
  • Weather conditions and visibility
  • General info pertaining to the seriousness of the accident

Once the basic level of info is collected, the investigator usually tends to assess the accident site. They desperately look for a point of impact, final resting positions, skid marks, scrub marks, and gouge marks. For documenting these findings, the investigator uses either a sketch or photographs and often both. In case they go for a sketch, they note all details at the scene and measurements between each object. This includes the final resting positions of the vehicles and any debris that may have been left due to the accident. On the other hand, if the investigator chooses to use photographs, they might take three types of photographs.

  1. Establishing photographs: This type of photographs shows the entire scene, the approaches to the scene, and a fixed object in the background to establish both location and scale.
  2. 360-degree photographs: These photographs display all four sides of the accident scene looking north, south, east, and west.
  3. Damage photographs: This type of photographs is mainly close-ups of the damage to the vehicles themselves. These also provide close-ups of any items that were struck by the vehicles involved.
How does the inspection of the Vehicles take place?

Once the accident scene is investigated, the investigators shift their focus on to the vehicles involved. Inspecting the concerned vehicles reveals unsafe vehicle conditions that could have been responsible for the accident. This investigation also shows the damage to the vehicles provides supporting information for witness statements and the investigator’s own observations. The extent of vehicular damage can show the following:

  • How fast the vehicles were going
  • How hard the drivers braked
  • The precise point of impact of the vehicles

This info is more than crucial.

How do police officers help in accident reconstruction?

Accident reconstruction can be defined as the process of using physics and mathematics to determine the speeds of the vehicles and their relative positions at all times. The major issues that are looked into are the pre-and post-impact direction of travel, the length of pre-impact skid marks, the post-impact distances moved, friction levels for the various surfaces the vehicles traveled on, a point of impact, impact angles, and the weights of the vehicles. As per the car accident, the calculations that an accident investigator uses varies.

Basically, when a Florida police officer arrives at a crash scene, their focus is mainly on safety. They ensure that each individual involved moves to a safe area to stay out of traffic’s way.

The post How Do Police Officers Investigate Car Accidents In Florida? appeared first on Schiffrinpa.

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The main reason to file a car accident lawsuit is to get fair compensation for the injuries caused due to an accident, where the accident has been a result of someone else’s negligence or cruelty. In case you are unable to see the other side coming to the negotiating table with a rightful offer, you must go for a lawsuit. However, you must consider some very important factors before going for one.

When should you file a lawsuit?

The probable answer is that you should file one when your case is clearly worth more than what you are being offered by the insurer. However, you must consult your lawyer first. If your lawyer believes that your case is worth way more than what the insurer is offering, then the right option is to file a lawsuit. Many files a lawsuit when they know that the insurer will increase the offer in pre-suit injury settlement negotiations.
Most of the car accident injury claims do not have a specific value. However, these have a wide range of values. This is because a certain part of the value of a car accident claim is the injured person’s pain and suffering. This non-monetary type of loss is not subject to exact calculation.

You also need to remember that if you file suit, your lawyer’s out of pocket expenses will start to rise remarkably. There is a huge likelihood that a later settlement will not put a lot more money in your pocket. Thus, you can consider putting a case in a suit if you and your lawyer feel that the case is worth way more than the insurer’s final pre-suit offer.

Stick to your lawyer’s opinion

No matter what, your lawyer’s opinion that is the most relevant opinion for you to fall back on! Keep in mind that valuing a case is not really that simple. There are many law-centric factors, such as prior settlement, jury verdict etc. that might not come across your mind, at the time of making a decision. When you have the support of an experienced Florida personal injury lawyer, you can blindly trust his opinion. He/she is the right person who can value your case in the most accurate manner, no matter how complex your case is. Thus, indirectly or directly, your lawyer will help you to get the compensation you deserve.

How long ago did the accident happen?

There are plenty of car accident injury claims that end in a settlement. Thus, many injury lawsuits settle well before trial. Many insurance claims are resolved through settlement without a lawsuit ever having been filed.

However, it cannot be denied that there are certain advantages to going to court. Here, you can let a judge or jury decide your case. You need to keep in mind that every injury case is different and there are many factors that need to be considered. Both options need to be weighed: settling your car accident injury claim and going through with a court trial.

What are the advantages of settling before filing a lawsuit?

Now, many people choose to settle a car accident claim prior to filing a lawsuit in court. These are some of the very basic advantages of settling before filing a lawsuit. These are:

  • receiving compensation early
  • doing away with high attorney’s fees
  • avoiding appearing at more than one court proceedings, thus avoiding hearings, depositions, trial
  • avoiding an unpredictable jury decision

In general, there are three questions that you must be able to answer prior to filing a lawsuit. First, you must ask yourself if you have a good case. Next, you have to ask if you would be satisfied with a settlement or going to mediation if you end up filing a lawsuit. Thirdly, with the assumption of winning your lawsuit, you need to ask yourself whether or not you will be able to gather any form of judgment. Genuine answers to these questions can help you to proceed further, making the right decisions for yourself. In case you come up with “no” for an answer to any of these vital questions, you should consider refraining from going to court. However, consulting a lawyer is any day better than making assumptions on your own!

What is a Good Case?

In terms of the law, any lawsuit can be broken down in a number of steps. These steps are components of legally required elements. In order to find out whether you have a good case, you will need to consider many elements. Also, you would have to make sure that you can satisfy or prove each one. The cause of action in your lawsuit comes into play here.

If the injury is caused due to a break of contract:
You need to be able to show that a valid contract existed between you and the other party. If you have a written contract that has been signed by both parties, then it will make things easier for you.

In case of performance, you need to show that you held up your end of the bargain under the terms of the contract. In case of breach, you need to prove that the other party breached the contract. In case of damages, you need to prove your economic damages. If applicable, you might have to include any lost profits in your damage calculation.

If the injury is caused due to negligence:
In case of duty, you need to prove that the defendant owed a duty to you. In case of breach of duty, you need to show that the defendant failed to act a reasonable person would in fulfilling the duty owed to the plaintiff. In case of damages, you need to prove damages. In a personal injury case, damages usually include medical bills as well as damages for pain and suffering caused by the injury.

Collecting compensation
You must carefully consider the person that you are going to sue. In case you think that a court judgment will be a substantial amount, you should pick a defendant who has the ability to pay.

The post How Serious Does an Accident Need to Be to Justify Filing a Lawsuit? appeared first on Schiffrinpa.

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There are plenty of undocumented immigrants who perform crucial jobs in Florida. Most of these jobs are pretty unsafe. This type of occupation often puts them at a likely risk of injury due to accident or negligence. Immigrants do not seek compensation many times. This is mainly because they do not want to expose their legal status. Thus, many undocumented workers simply assume they cannot file a personal injury lawsuit.

Are you working as an Undocumented Immigrant?
There are certain states have no prerequisite to possess work permits or immigration papers to work for the company. In case the state shares a border with another country, it is possible to hire a foreign national. In this case, the worker remains in that other country. Working with the company or for the business might extend the right to sue for injuries in an accident. If there is no workers’ compensation package or no insurance to cover the damages, a lawsuit is important to guarantee compensation transfers to this person.

Do undocumented immigrants have the right to sue?
In most states, the right to sue is not dependent on citizenship. As per the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, no state may “deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.” This pretty much includes people who may be living and working in the country with no concrete documentation.

If you are an undocumented immigrant injured in a car or truck accident caused by another party’s negligence, you have the same right as any U.S. citizen to seek damages through a personal injury claim. Thus, your status of immigration should not affect your act of filing a civil lawsuit. There are some courts that have ruled that a person can still recover damages for lost wages and earning capacity even if they are not legally authorized to work in the United States.

There are certain states where the right to sue another person or party is not a reserved right to United States citizens. Thus, if you are working or living in the American states, you have the right to sue another person, company or entity for injury or damages caused. It remains the same even if you are living or working in the U.S. without any proper documentation in the country.

Can your legal status deter you?
There are numerous undocumented immigrants who worry that going for filing a lawsuit after a car accident, might give way to the discovery of their illegal status. Certain times, immigration status might even become an issue. So, you need to be clear about certain facts, before you go ahead to file a claim.

Under normal circumstances, a personal injury plaintiff cannot truly be threatened based on immigration status. A lawyer cannot do so. An insurance company cannot refuse to settle a personal injury claim based on a person’s immigration status. In case you are in an accident and lie on an official report or document, this could be used against you in court. So, be truthful!

Being an undocumented immigrant, you can pretty much sue the other party when injured in an accident. It goes without saying! For you, the laws are the same. These laws intend to protect the injured person from suffering harm due to an accident.

Injuries caused at work
The common injuries in these cases include heavy equipment, sharp or blunt tools and substances or chemicals that could damage the body. In fact, the injury in these cases is highly serious. The foreign national might get his body devastated. It might cause him a prolonged health condition as well. Based on the actions of the employer, these workers may suffer some more problems if no proper healthcare is provided. If no medical assistance is taken, most of the injuries are likely to damage the individual. Thus, nothing should deter these employees to speak up before the law. The best way to go about it is to hire an experienced and specialized personal injury attorney.

Negligence
No matter wherever the incident occurred, whether on the road or at work, this person has the right to sue. He is entitled to pursue a negligence claim through the United States Constitution. This type of personal injury claim offers multiple possible damages owed to the injured party.

Keep in mind that filing the lawsuit does not immediately affect immigration status. Also, the lawyer may help protect the client from these consequences.

How to prove negligence?
In case the immigrant person suffering injury through an accident has a negligence claim, he is still required to the four elements of negligence. A duty of care is to be owed. An accident of such nature implies a breach of this duty. It is then that the incident causes some form of injury.
It is not easy to prove causation. However, an injury through the event can connect the cause of the damage to the driver’s negligent actions. The plaintiff might prove that the other driver was distracted.

How to recover damages from Injury?
In usual, the accident will ensure the possibility of compensation in many ways. Even if you are an undocumented immigrant, you are entitled to recover income, medical expenses and other damages are possible for any person.

However, certain courts affirm this through cases that provide compensation to the illegal immigrant. Usually, the earning capacity and legal authorization to work in the United States does not exclude these employees. Even subcontractors who hire illegal immigrants can recover damages.

Why is it important for undocumented immigrants to hire a lawyer?
Having proper legal support helps them to pursue a case for compensation after suffering injuries in an accident either at work or on the road. The foreign national often requires the legal support to get through the process. In case the immigrant does not speak English, he has no other option but to get legal support. Same goes for immigrants who have no basic concept of legal methods or court proceedings.

The post Undocumented Immigrants Injured in Accidents – Can They Sue? appeared first on Schiffrinpa.

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It is pretty evident that determining fault after an accident is not an easy task. It highly depends on the body of evidence that is presented. In most of the cases, the fault is of a group of people. As far as the partial compensation for the at-fault drivers is concerned, the laws vary from state to state.

You must try to know how police, insurance companies, and judges determine liability. Try to understand as to how that affects drivers in different states.

How to determine fault in an auto accident?
Right after an accident occurs, the first step for the police or your attorney is to collect as much relevant evidence as possible. This includes getting photos of the vehicle damage and road conditions and gathering eye-witness accounts. They also get an account from the drivers each driver as to what exactly occurred. The police try to find out whether traffic laws were broken and as to who is at fault for the collision. The concerned driver is supposed to file a police report describing the details of the accident. In this context, the police officer’s report is considered to be of grave importance. In an insurance claim and legal case, this piece of evidence is vital.

Certain times, police officers might be unaware of evidence that emerges at a later stage. This is the reason why the police report can be disputed. You should ask for the police officer’s name and badge number, the police report number, and a copy of the report, without fail.

In case the accident was entirely your fault, you can call your auto insurance company. You can pretty much file a claim under your collision coverage. In case the accident was partially or entirely the fault of the other driver, you can contact both your insurer and the other driver’s insurer. At the time of making an insurance claim, the insurance company usually reviews the police report. They also check whether there are any medical reports filed by doctors and emergency medical responders.

When you hire a personal injury lawyer, he conducts an in-depth investigation. He is often required to interview eye-witnesses, speak to doctors, consult with accident re-creation specialists, secure video footage and information from the vehicle’s black box etc. Once all of these pieces of evidence are gathered, the insurance companies weigh all this evidence to determine fault in a claim. In most cases, more than one driver is at fault.

Steps to take after an accident
You are required to collect evidence, first and foremost. Your case is hollow without enough relevant pieces of evidence! Once you have a good deal of evidence to support your claim, you need to follow a bunch of crucial procedures.

Consult with an experienced personal injury lawyer without much delay. Do it before discussing your case with the other driver’s insurer. Keep in mind that insurance companies intent to settle for less compensation than you may deserve. On the other hand, an attorney can guide you smartly, providing the right legal options. They are the ones who handle all the communication with the insurance companies. Last but not least, they are the ones to help you get the best compensation possible.

Third-party evidence can be crucial
A good deal of deliberation has to be put at the time of determining the fault. If a motorcycle is driving in an erratic manner, a third-party witness statement can help to a great extent. This might help the police determine fault.

In a case where the vehicle is hit from behind, but they jump in front of a car with no time to stop, the case is not usually that clear to the police.

One needs to keep in mind that a motorcycle can weave in and out of traffic with shorter spaces. The motorcycle driver might even appear to be the victim. But, in reality, they caused the accident. Here is when the witness can play a vital role by helping the police to know that irresponsible driving is the root cause of the accident. Witnesses can settle disputes between drivers’ viewpoints. This is more so when it involves no officer.

Working of the laws
In accidents, there are certain factors that influence as to how legal liability is determined. In case both or all the parties are negligent, then the ones who are more negligent, usually are liable to pay for a larger portion of the damages suffered.

However, the injured parties’ compensation might be reduced. As per the doctrine “Comparative Negligence,” the parties will be responsible for. In case the person was at a place where he was not supposed to be, then his injuries may not be compensated by the other party. This is mainly because that person had no duty of due diligence towards him.

The employer might be responsible for the acts of the negligent person who has caused the accident at the time of being on the job. This doctrine is known as “Respondeat Superior”. It is applicable when the negligent person was acting under the scope or duties of their employment.

The manufacturer might be responsible for accidents that occur due to the improper construction of the car, truck, motorcycle, or bicycle. In such cases, it is the owner who takes responsibility if the vehicle that has caused the accident is poorly maintained.

In case you or a loved one has been involved in a traffic accident, you can get great support from a car accident attorney. You must keep in mind that all drivers have a duty to exercise due diligence in carrying passengers.

It can be stated that there are many combinations of responsibility and liability surrounding common car accidents. It is not an easy task to figure out who to turn for damages. The steps need to be taken cautiously. When you have the support of an experienced car accident attorney, you can shake off some portion of the stress from your shoulders.

The post What Determines Who Is at Fault in a Car, Truck, Motorcycle, or Bicycle Accident? appeared first on Schiffrinpa.

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Traumatic brain injury is a vital cause of death and disability in most of the states. TBIs nearly contribute to about 30% of all injury deaths. Effects of TBI can include impaired thinking or memory, movement, sensation, or emotional functioning. These issues can have lasting effects on families as well.

What to know about TBI?
A TBI is caused by a bump, blow, or jolt to the head. It usually disrupts the normal function of the brain. You must know that not all blows or jolts to the head result in a TBI. The severity of a TBI may range from just mild to severe. The severe form of TBI might include an extended period of unconsciousness or memory loss after the injury. Most of the TBIs that occur each year are mild are termed as “concussions”.

Usually, traumatic brain injury usually results from a violent blow or jolt to the head or body. An object that penetrates brain tissue, such as a bullet or shattered piece of skull, can cause traumatic brain injury.

Mild traumatic brain injury may impact your brain cells temporarily. More-serious traumatic brain injury can result in bruising, torn tissues, bleeding etc. These injuries can give way to long-term complications or death.

What are the common symptoms?
Traumatic brain injury can have many psychological effects. Some of the common signs or symptoms may appear immediately after the traumatic event. For a mild traumatic brain injury, the signs and symptoms might include:

Physical symptoms

  • Loss of consciousness for a few seconds to a few minutes
  • No loss of consciousness, but a state of being dazed, confused or disoriented
  • Headache
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Fatigue or drowsiness
  • Problems with speech
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Sleeping more than usual
  • Dizziness or loss of balance

Cognitive or mental symptoms

  • Memory or concentration problems
  • Mood changes or mood swings
  • Feeling depressed or anxious
  • Moderate to severe traumatic brain injuries

What to know about children’s symptoms?
Most of the times, infants and young children with brain injuries are not be able to communicate headaches, sensory problems, confusion, and similar symptoms. In a child with traumatic brain injury, you might observe change in eating or nursing habits; unusual or easy irritability; persistent crying and inability to be consoled; change in ability to pay attention; change in sleep habits; seizures; sad or depressed mood; drowsiness; loss of interest in favorite toys or activities etc.

What is the right time to see a doctor?
You must see your doctor if you or your child has received a blow to the head or body that concerns you or causes behavioral changes. Try to seek emergency medical care if there are any signs or symptoms of traumatic brain injury following a recent blow or another traumatic injury to the head.

What are the usual causes of TBI?
Traumatic brain injury is usually caused by a blow or other traumatic injury to the head or body. The degree of damage can depend on many factors. These include the nature of the injury and the force of impact.

What are some of the most common events that cause traumatic brain injury?

  • Falls
    Falls from bed or a ladder, downstairs, in the bath and other falls are the most prominent causes of traumatic brain injury overall. These particularly occur in older adults and young children.
    Vehicle-related collisions
    Collisions that involve cars, motorcycles or bicycles and pedestrians involved in such accidents are a common cause of traumatic brain injury.
  • Violence
    Gunshot wounds, domestic violence, child abuse etc. are common causes. A shaken baby syndrome is a traumatic brain injury in infants that is widely caused by violent shaking.
  • Sports injuries
    Traumatic brain injuries might be caused by injuries from a number of sports, including soccer, boxing, football, baseball, lacrosse, skateboarding, hockey, and other high-impact or extreme sports. These are pretty common in youth.
  • Explosive blasts and other combat injuries
    Explosive blasts are a popular cause of traumatic brain injury in active-duty military personnel. Most of the researchers believe that the pressure wave passing through the brain significantly disrupts brain function.
  • Penetrating wounds
    Traumatic brain injury occurs from penetrating wounds, severe blows to the head with shrapnel or debris, and falls or physical collisions with objects following a blast.
  • What are the risk factors?
    The people at risk of traumatic brain injury usually include children, especially newborns to 4-year-olds; young adults, especially those between ages 15 and 24; adults age 60 and older; males in any age group etc.
  • What are the complications involved?
    There are many complications that can occur immediately or soon after a traumatic brain injury. Severe injuries increase the risk of a greater number and more-severe complications.
  • Altered consciousness
    Moderate to severe traumatic brain injury can result in prolonged or permanent changes in a person’s state of consciousness, awareness or responsiveness. Different states of consciousness include:
  • Coma
    A person in a coma is unconscious and unaware of anything. Usually, he is unable to respond to any stimulus as well. This is caused from widespread damage to all parts of the brain. After some weeks, a person may emerge from a coma or enter a vegetative state.
  • Vegetative state
    Widespread damage to the brain can give way to a vegetative state. Though the person is unaware of surroundings, he may open his or her eyes, make sounds, respond to reflexes, or move. In the worst case, a vegetative state can become permanent. However, individuals usually progress to a minimally conscious state.
  • Minimally conscious state
    This is a condition of severely altered consciousness but with some signs of self-awareness or awareness of one’s environment.
  • Brain death
    If there is no measurable activity in the brain and the brainstem, this is referred to as brain death. In a person who has been declared brain dead, removal of breathing devices will give way to cessation of breathing and eventual heart failure. Brain death is usually irreversible.
  • Seizures
    The seizures might occur only in the early stages, or years after the injury. Recurrent seizures are referred to as post-traumatic epilepsy.

The post What You Need To Know About Traumatic Brain Injury appeared first on Schiffrinpa.

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When an accident occurs, one main concern is as to who is liable for the damages and compensation. Fortunately, in most accidents, damages are covered by one of the involved driver’s insurance companies. This makes financial recovery more likely.

What if the person who was driving one of the vehicles in the accident was not the owner of the car?
This type of scenario can complicate the process of filing a claim. However, there are certain protocols that help to resolve this issue when it occurs. One should understand that when it comes to accidents of this nature is that Car Insurance is insurance on the car itself, rather than the driver. Thus, as long as you have Car Insurance, your vehicle is likely to be covered if it is involved in an accident while someone else is driving.

Similarly, if the accident was determined to be the fault of the other driver, their insurance will be held responsible for damages.

What if the person driving your vehicle also has insurance?
When the driver of your vehicle has their own insurance policy, then that coverage will act secondarily to yours. This means that your insurance will pay for the damages and other expenses up to your coverage amount. Also, if there is any leftover bill, the driver’s insurance will cover it.

What are the exceptions to these rules?
There are certain exceptions here. These can result in you being held liable or your insurance refusing to pay for the damages to your car. One of the exceptions is that if the person driving your car was specifically excluded from your coverage.

There are times when people will exclude a driver from their coverage because they have a poor driving record. This would cause their insurance to be more expensive. In case you allow the excluded person to drive your car and they get into an accident, your insurance will not be obligated to pay for any of the resulting damages.

Another prominent exception to these rules involves the state of the driver at the time of the accident. When you allow a person to drive your car who is under the influence of drugs or alcohol, or they do not have a valid drivers’ license, you will most likely be held liable.

What if someone takes your car without your permission?
When someone takes your car without your permission, you might still be considered responsible for paying damages since it is difficult to prove whether permission was granted or not.

There are a few exceptions to this rule. These are if your car was stolen, used by a friend or family member. Whether they are insured or not, your car insurance will usually provide coverage and pay for the damages.

How to protect yourself from financial responsibility?
Every car accident is unique. So, every car accident case is unique as well. In order to prepare for unforeseen circumstances, you must understand your insurance policy well. Accordingly, you can follow the rules it sets out for you.
In case you get into a car accident, the best course of action is to contact a car accident injury attorney. Get in touch with a professional personal injury attorney who is a specialized type of attorney. They are the right people who can help victims of car accidents recover their financial losses.

What steps can you take if someone took your car without your permission and caused accident?
In the state of Florida, if your car was taken from your possession without your consent, you cannot be held liable for any damages that were incurred. Thus, you need to prove that you did not give permission.

Here are some basic steps that you can take in such a scenario:

Inform the police
Remember that your first course of action, when involved in this type of situation, is to file a police report. When you have the fact that your car was stolen on official documentation, it will be easier to back up your claim. If your car was actually stolen by a stranger, this will be easier to prove than having a friend who took your car without asking. You must prove you did not give the driver permission. This does not mean any type of vocal consent. If you handed someone your keys, it is assumed they had your consent to drive your car.
In case you did give the driver permission, you will be responsible for damages until you reach the end of your car insurance policy. If damages exceed your policy, the car insurance policy of the driver responsible for the collision itself will kick in. The best way to ensure that your policy is not liable for damages and that your rates don’t go up, is to get it on paper that whoever was behind the wheel of your car did not have your permission.

Inform your insurance company
You must notify your car insurance company. You must see what your insurance company can do to support your claim.
Before assuming, you can get out of your responsibilities to cover damages. This way you can make sure to get a thorough understanding of your car insurance policy. You may have already legally given this person permission to drive your car. Make sure you get your facts.

Usually, vehicle owners are not liable for damages caused by their stolen vehicles merely as a consequence of owning their cars or even leaving the keys in the ignition. However, a vehicle owner may be held liable if it can be established that the owner had proper knowledge that a specific person had used their vehicle in the past without their permission and failed to take steps to stop them.

Usually, car owners are liable for personal injury resulting caused only by persons using the vehicle under the permission of the owner. Since the owner of a stolen vehicle has not given the thief consent to use the vehicle, the owner cannot be held liable for any accidents and injuries the thief causes while operating the vehicle.

The post Are you liable for Damages if your Vehicle is taken without your permission? appeared first on Schiffrinpa.

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When it comes to commercial truck drivers, the fight against fatigue and drowsiness are real. However, the structure and nature of the trucking industry push many drivers to work past their physical limits. This clearly puts them as well as others in danger.

Usually, drowsy driving leads to many accidents. Among these crashes, those involving commercial trucks and big rigs usually cause catastrophic injuries and even death. The commercial truck drivers are at a higher risk for drowsy driving than anyone else. They spend long hours on the road. Also, they are pressured by their employers into meeting strict deadlines most of the times. There are some companies that offer bonuses and incentives for truckers who deliver their loads ahead of schedule. This encourages them to continue driving even when they are extremely drowsy or fatigued.

What are the effects of Drowsy Driving?
Usually, heavy-lidded blinks, yawning, lane drifting, and missing exits are just a few of the dangerous side effects of driving while drowsy. Truck drivers can pose a significant danger if they’re driving while fatigued.

Usually, the body seldom functions without sleep for hours. Adults need to sleep for seven to eight hours every night. This is important to stay healthy and maintain regular reaction times. Due to lack of sleep, drivers can suffer from short-term memory loss; slowed reaction times; mood changes and an increase in aggressive behavior and difficulty processing information.

Why do most of the truck drivers do not get good sleep?
In the trucking industry, new regulations appear when accidents or trouble arise. However, the nature of trucking goes against many of the recommendations for good sleep. The goal to transport as many goods as possible in the shortest amount of time doesn’t focus on health. The safety of the drivers is also at stake, when on road. The proper sleep conditions, such as a consistent bedtime, comfortable mattress, cool temperatures, and quiet conditions can be almost impossible to find while out on the road. This is the reason why many drivers sleep in their cabs in a new location each night.

Regulations can be disregarded
Truck drivers have a 14-hour work period usually. They are allowed to drive for 11 hours. The other three hours are supposed to be used for periodic rest all day long. Drivers can take one 30-minute break. They can spend the remaining portion of the three hours as they want.

There are certain regulations to help limit the number of truck drivers on the road between 1 a.m. and 5 a.m. to help drivers maintain a more normal sleep cycle. This set of rules is meant to provide better sleeping patterns. However, these rules can go against many common practices of the drivers, mainly those who find themselves pressured to meet tight deadlines.

There are some drivers who are paid by the mile. It is clear that the more miles they travel in a day, the more money they make. Others record and report their hours themselves. This leaves it up to the honesty of the driver whether or not to follow regulations.

Effects of drowsiness
Drowsiness usually is known to impair a driver’s judgment, reflexes and reaction times. At the time of falling asleep, drivers can swerve into cars and pedestrians in the other lane or go off the road.
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has instituted hours of service schedule limiting truckers to 14 consecutive hours of driving. As per this law, a break in the first eight service hours is necessary. It requires truckers to take 10 off-duty hours prior to starting their next shift.

Why are truckers more susceptible to Drowsy Driving?
Any driver may be guilty of driving drowsy. However, truck drivers are pretty much more at risk. There are several factors such as long hours on the road, tight deadlines, and pressure from employers that pretty much contribute to drowsy driving. When a regular driver can pull off the road, a truck driver on a strict deadline can deliver cargo may not have this luxury. It is a common habit of truckers to push themselves past the breaking point. This is the main reason why the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has created hours of service schedule that all truck drivers must obey.

As per the hours of service rule, all commercial motor vehicle drivers who need to carry property cargo must have an 11-hour maximum driving limit. This is only after 10 consecutive hours of being off duty. A driver might not drive longer than 14 consecutive hours. The job pressures can make truckers ignore the hours of service rule and push themselves too hard to meet deadlines. Trucking companies might offer incentives such as bonuses for drivers who deliver cargo ahead of schedule. These practices clearly leave the trucker fatigued.

Impact of Drowsiness
Drowsy driving is as dangerous as drunk driving. In case of drunk or fatigued driving, the driver’s judgment, reaction time, and cognition are impaired. Sleepiness can slow a driver’s reflexes as well. This leads to a higher chance of collision. No one can determine the moment they fall asleep. A tired driver can easily doze off without realizing he is at risk.

When a driver has to steer suddenly to avoid a collision or hit the brakes, drowsiness might slow down these reactions to a dangerous point. Thus, it gets really difficult to pay attention to the road since the driver is highly focused only on staying awake. Most of the commercial drivers need to be aware of the risks of drowsy driving. They need to learn how to prevent this tragic mistake.

How to avoid fatigue while driving?
In order to avoid drowsy driving, try not to put a delivery deadline ahead of your personal wellbeing. If you feel tired, accept it and act on it! The smart thing to do is to pull over and sleep. Try to stick to industry-standard resting guidelines at all times.

Need a truck accident attorney in Florida? Call us now!

The post Why are Truck Drivers at Such High Risk for Driving While Drowsy? appeared first on Schiffrinpa.

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Most of the personal injury cases end up being complicated. One of the main causes is that the insurance company might simply an insurance company refusing to make you a reasonable offer or take you seriously at all.

Here are some of the top reasons to use a personal injury lawyer:

Your Claim is not easy for you to handle alone
At some point along the way, you might decide that your accident or injury claim is too complicated for you to deal with, all alone. Most of the personal injury cases involve technical or legal complexities. These usually make it very difficult for a non-lawyer to manage.

Your injuries are severe or permanently disabling. This makes the case more valuable and also means there’s a wide range in the amount of money you might wish to recover. In such a scenario, you might feel the need for an experienced lawyer to make sure that you maximize your compensation.

If you are lucky enough, your claim might not turn out to be that complicated. However, you still might not feel comfortable handling it yourself. You might realize this right at the beginning of the claim process. This commonly happens when the claim is headed to arbitration. The bottom line is that hiring an injury lawyer takes off a good deal of stress of your shoulders. It also guarantees you with a promising compensation.

You might reach a stalemate with the insurance company
Certain times, you may handle your claim comfortably and competently. However, you might still wind up wanting to hire a lawyer because the insurance company refuses to make a fair settlement offer. In case you do not want to settle for a token amount and you believe your claim is worth more, you will be needed to hire a lawyer to help you.

No Liability granted
An insurance company might even deny that their insured was in any way at fault for an accident. They usually do so in the hope that you will believe it, or that you will quickly become so frustrated that you give up and drop your claim. When you decide not to give up and stick to your claim, an insurance company might come around and make a reasonable settlement offer.

However, when an insurance company does not budge from its initial denial of all responsibility, you may need help from a lawyer. When an experienced personal injury lawyer can coax some money out of the insurance company, you will have received some compensation.

No Coverage granted
This is another common claim the insurance company might make. It is that the particular accident is not covered by the insurance policy. In this scenario, your first step should be to demand a copy of the insurance policy. You can read it carefully to see whether what the insurance adjuster says is true.

In case you locate in the policy exactly what the insurance adjuster says is there, it does not always end the matter. A majority of the insurance policy provisions can be interpreted several different ways. The courts usually try to interpret them so that injured people are covered. Thus, you must consider taking your claim to an experienced personal injury lawyer. The lawyer might be able to force the insurance company to provide the coverage it has been paid to provide.

When Government Immunity comes into the picture
The right to sue a government entity, a town, city, county, or state, or a school, transportation, or another local district, for an accident caused by its employee is strictly controlled by specific laws in each state. These laws that are commonly referred to as “sovereign immunity” and the “tort claims act” establish the rules about when you are allowed to sue the government since of an accident, and the special procedures you have to follow before you may do so.

However, nevertheless, the government’s response may be to deny you any compensation. It might argue that it is immune to claims in your particular kind of accident.

The truth is that a government’s claim of immunity is sometimes just a knee-jerk response that disappears after you negotiate for a while. However, claims adjusters for public entities do not usually give up public money easily. Certain times, they cling to an immunity defense all the way to court. Due to the complexity of the rules involved, if a claims adjuster refuses to make any settlement offer to you because of a supposed government immunity, you might have to consult a personal injury attorney out making a legal attack on that immunity claim.

Requirement of a legal advice
Occasionally, the success or failure of a claim turns on a specific legal rule. For example, your right to collect insurance from a business might depend on whether its employee was acting within the course of employment when the employee injured you in an accident. The law has technical rules about what is and is not the “course and scope of employment.” Or, you might have been injured on a buckled sidewalk, and the question of who is responsible might involve legal rules about water damage, tree roots, or other property law questions.

In some situations, you might have to consult with a lawyer on an hourly basis to get an experienced legal opinion. When you suffer from serious injuries, you need to get an attorney. This is mainly because your lawyer can help you make sure you get the full spectrum of damages you’re entitled to. Usually, lawyers are experts in negotiation and can maximize your recovery. The insurers and defendants might take your claim more seriously when you’re represented by an attorney.

Almost all personal injury lawyers work on a contingency basis. This implies that your personal injury lawyer will not be paid any money or legal fees unless you win your case or settle outside of court.

Usually, contingency fee agreements work by allowing the lawyer to collect compensation right out of your settlement or damage award.

The post Discover Why You Need A Personal Injury Attorney appeared first on Schiffrinpa.

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A wrongful death claim can be best defined as a civil lawsuit that may be brought to court when the negligence or wrongful act of one party causes the death of another person.

Wrongful Death Claims in Florida
As per Florida Statutes section 768.19, when a person’s death “is caused by the wrongful act, negligence, default, or breach of contract” of another person or some other entity, the estate of the deceased person may bring a civil lawsuit in Florida’s courts, seeking a legal remedy for that death and the losses stemming from it.

Who is entitled to bring a Florida Wrongful Death Claim?
According to Florida law, it is required of the personal representative of the deceased person’s estate to file the wrongful death claim. The personal representative may be named in the deceased person’s will or estate plan. In case there is no will or estate plan, the personal representative needs to be appointed by the court. However, the wrongful death claim is filed on behalf of the deceased person’s estate and any surviving family members. When it comes to the wrongful death claim, the personal representative must list every survivor who has an interest in the case.

Family members who are entitled to recover damages in a Florida wrongful death case include:

  • the deceased person’s spouse, children, and parents, and
  • any blood relative or adoptive sibling who is partly or entirely dependent on the decedent for support or services.

In case a child is born to unmarried parents, the child can recover damages in a wrongful death case if his or her mother dies. In case the child’s father dies, the child can only recover damages if the father had formally recognized the child as his own and was obligated to contribute to the support of the child.

Is there any time limit for filing a Florida Wrongful Death Lawsuit?
Every state has passed laws that set time limits on your right to go to court and file a lawsuit. This type of law is called a statute of limitations. Most states have passed a separate statute that covers wrongful death lawsuits.

A wrongful death lawsuit in Florida needs to be filed within two years of the date of death in most cases. This is as per the Florida Statutes section 95.11(4)(d). The deadline needs to be “tolled,” or postponed, under a few very specific circumstances. A genuine wrongful death attorney can handle the Florida wrongful death cases. They can help you determine exactly when the statute of limitations expires in a certain case. You should follow the deadline set by the statute of limitations, else you could lose your right to bring your wrongful death lawsuit to court.

Damages in Wrongful Death Cases
Since a wrongful death case is a civil claim, it is brought to court by the deceased person’s estate, not by the government. Liability in a wrongful death claim is expressed only in terms of money damages. Though a criminal case related to the death might also be filed in court, it addresses different concerns. It usually does not give way to damages being paid to the estate or the surviving family members.

As per Florida Statutes section 768.21, the state’s rules for awarding damages in a wrongful death lawsuit. Damages that surviving family members might receive in these kinds of cases include:

  • the value of support and services the deceased person had provided to the surviving family member
  • loss of companionship, guidance, and protection provided by the deceased person
  • mental and emotional pain and suffering due to the loss of a child, and
  • medical or funeral expenses any surviving family member has paid for the deceased person.

The deceased person’s estate might also recover certain types of damages. These damages are inclusive of:

  • lost wages, benefits, and other earnings, including the value of lost earnings that the deceased person could reasonably have been expected to make if he or she had lived.
  • missed “prospective net accumulations” of the estate, or the value of earnings the estate could reasonably have been expected to collect if the deceased person had lived, and
  • medical and funeral expenses that were paid by the estate.
  • Loss of any inheritance due to the untimely death
  • the deceased person’s pre-death pain and suffering
  • the medical expenses that the deceased victim incurred as a result of injury prior to death
  • Loss of love and companionship

Statutes of Limitations
If a suit is not filed within the time frame, you will not be able to receive compensation. However, there are certain exceptions. Sometimes a critical discovery about a wrongful death case is made after the statute of limitation has expired. In such cases, those seeking to file a claim for wrongful death may have more time to do so.

As per the Florida Statute § 95.11, a person has to file a claim within 2 years of a wrongful death case. Different types of cases have different statutes of limitations. It is important to understand the statute of limitations since it is key to successfully filing and ultimately winning a claim.

Wrongful Death as a result of Product Liability or Mislabeling
When a piece of machinery malfunctions and then someone gets injured and later dies as a result, it forms a wrongful death case as a result of product liability. These wrongful death cases are common. Plenty of such claims are brought each year against manufacturers due to the improper labeling of products and failure to provide express warnings of potential hazards or known dangers. Thus, when manufacturers produce and sell unsafe products to the general public they need to be held accountable.

What is Auto Accident Fatality?
In a car accident where one party sustains a fatality as a result of the negligence exhibited by an individual, it is called an auto accident fatality case. Such a form of wrongful death might occur due to reckless driving, distracted driving, speeding, driving etc. Call a specialized wrongful death attorney today!

The post How Long Do You Have to File Wrongful Death in Florida? appeared first on Schiffrinpa.

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