Injured - The FindLaw Accident, Injury and Tort Law Blog

April 2016 Archives

If you’re involved in a serious car accident, one of the biggest decisions you’ll make is hiring the right lawyer. But how do you find out which lawyer is right for your case?

Online reviews and personal referrals are a great start, but you’ll have to meet with a car accident attorney before you hire one. And here are a few essentials questions you’ll need the answers to:

Types of Nursing Home Abuse

The youngest and oldest among us are vulnerable and exposed to abuse more than most other populations. But elderly people are exposed to some added abuse dangers that children do not face.

Elder abuse is unfortunately common and it happens for many reasons. Being in nursing homes and in the hands of professional caregivers increases the risk of mistreatment. Plus, older people are much more likely to face financial exploitation. This is what to look out for.

Women who are pregnant or trying to get pregnant are warned by The Food and Drug Administration that the oral prescription drug Diflucan (also known as fluconazole), which is used to treat yeast infections, has been linked to increased risk of miscarriages. The warning is based on findings from a Danish study.

But the agency is evaluating the study for now and says the increased risk is only a possibility. It has not reached conclusions.

Even if you know who’s at fault for your accident, you might not sue right away. While there are time limits to bringing a lawsuit, it can also take time to put a case together. And there are some things you can do in between your accident and filing your lawsuit that can be crucial for your injury claim.

Here are the best ways to prepare for your personal injury lawsuit:

New Fast Food Harm Found: Can You Sue?

You probably already know by now that fast food is not healthy and that you shouldn’t live off the stuff because even if it doesn’t kill you, it will increase your chances of obesity. But now researchers have discovered another disconcerting angle on this type of food, which is that the preparation process itself seems to have harmful effects on consumers.

So, can you sue McDonald’s? Well, probably not but we’ll get to that momentarily. First, the findings.

If you suffer from a high risk of blood clotting due to surgery or an accident, an inferior vena cava filter or IVC filter can save your life. But in most cases, IVC filters are only supposed to be temporary fixes: the Food and Drug Administration has repeatedly warned of the risks associated with IVC filters and documented hundreds of adverse health events due to leaving IVC filters in long after they are needed.

Some of these injuries have led to lawsuits, so here's what you need to know about IVC filters and your legal options:

Workers’ compensation insurance is in place to make sure employees get paid if they get hurt on the job. While this coverage can include a wide range of injuries and scenarios, it doesn’t quite cover every injury just because it happened at work or while you were working.

And it may not cover you if you fail a drug test. Here’s what you need to know:

How Much Can a Passenger Recover After a Car Accident?

You’re injured in a car accident and it is clearly not your fault because you were not behind the wheel but merely an unfortunate passenger. Can you recover any money? How much? Do you sue someone or go through insurance?

The answers to these questions will depend in part on state statutes — each locale has its own laws governing car accidents, insurance coverage, and negligence lawsuits. Additional major factors are the severity of the accident and extent of injury. Let’s look at who might be liable when you’re injured as a passenger.

Just months after a jury ordered the company to pay $72 million to a woman's family after her death from ovarian cancer was linked to its talcum powder-based products, Johnson & Johnson is being sued again. A Los Angeles man filed a wrongful death claim on behalf of his wife, claiming her fatal ovarian cancer was also due to using Johnson & Johnson products.

This is on top of around 1,200 lawsuits in Missouri and New Jersey that have been filed against the company, accusing it of failing to warn consumers of known cancer risks.

Can You Sue for a Damaged Credit Rating?

Your credit rating, if it’s good, is an asset and can be more valuable than tangible things you own. That number represents your reliability as a borrower and will impact your ability to obtain financing, so if someone damages your credit — particularly a time when you’re seeking financing of some kind — they cause you a kind of financial injury that may be compensable after a lawsuit.

Winning a damaged credit claim is not easy. But it can be done and people have won these cases. So let’s take a look at a sample case to get an idea of how you make this claim and what you have to show.

When Can You Sue for a Child's Lead Poisoning?

Lead poisoning, which until recently seemed like it might become a thing of the past, is back in the national spotlight. Children in Flint, Michigan have been injured and lawsuits, criminal and civil, stemming from lead in the drinking water in that area are being filed.

This week three government officials became the first to face criminal charges for the Flint water crisis, and they could potentially spend years in prison. Meanwhile, class actions on behalf of injured children, as well as individual claims based on lead poisoning, are already under way. If you are contemplating such a case, here are some considerations.

It's the first and biggest question after a car accident: Whose fault was it? Because determining who caused a car accident will often determine who will be legally liable to pay for the damage and any injuries.

In some cases, deciding who's liable for a car accident is pretty easy: someone was tailgating; that guy ran a red light; she was looking at her cell phone. Other times, figuring out who's at fault is a little bit trickier. Here are seven of the most common questions regarding car accident liability:

3 Common Negligence Claims Between Tenants and Landlords

Landlords have it good insofar as they collect rent from tenants on their property without putting in too much work on a day-to-day basis. But landlords should not get too relaxed; those who do nothing will find themselves facing negligence claims when someone is injured on a rental property.

There are many ways for people to get hurt, and there is no way to ensure that no injuries will ever happen on a property. But landlords can mitigate risk by paying attention to details and making maintenance a priority. Tenants should be aware of their rights and responsibilities, too. When a landlord falls short and someone gets hurt, consider one of the following common claims arising from the landlord-tenant relationship.

Due to their size and shape, tractor trailers have various no-zones — blind spots and other dangerous areas surrounding semis where accidents are most likely to occur. And these accidents can be especially deadly: the latest statistics show that 3,660 people were killed in large truck accidents in 2014 alone, the vast majority of whom were not the truck drivers.

So how do you identify tractor trailer no-zones and how can you avoid these dangerous accidents? Here are a few tips:

What You Need to Know If You're Being Sued for a Car Accident

Car accidents are a risk of driving. When an accident results in a lawsuit for personal injury, the driver at fault may be in for another huge headache. What should you do if you’re involved in an accident and concerned about being sued?

Here are five tips on accidents, injury, insurance and lawsuits, informed by a list on Enlighten Me. Knowing a little bit about the law and what to expect can go a long way toward minimizing your anxiety if you find yourself in an unfortunate situation.

Earlier this month, an unmarked New York Police Department car collided with a bicyclist. The official police report said that the cyclist struck the side police officers’ car while the car was legally turning right and that the cyclist was uninjured in the accident.

But newly released video of the accident, tracked down by the cyclist himself, shows that the cops weren’t telling the truth about the bike crash, and were probably at fault.

NPR's Feature Case on Workers' Comp Settles: Beware Strict Provisions

Workers’ compensation is federally mandated and administered by states, but some employers may opt out if they have an alternate plan. When that happens, it can be more difficult for individuals hurt on the job to get compensation for their medical claims, as was highlighted in a feature on National Public Radio.

The story revealed the difficulties of Rachel Jenkins, 33, who was injured caring for a disabled man and denied benefits by her Oklahoma employer’s private plan. Jenkins and others sued the state and employers over certain provisions in the Oklahoma workers’ compensation opt-out plan. This week, Jenkins settled her claim with the company, reports NPR.

Can I Sue for Injury From an Infected Scope?

In recent years, there has been growing awareness of deadly infections associated with the use of gastrointestinal scopes that cannot be cleaned completely. A new congressional investigation shows that the number of potential infections is much higher than originally thought.

Does this mean that you can sue if an infected gastrointestinal scope has been used on you? No. But if you have suffered an injury as a result of an infected scope's use on you and you can prove it, then you certainly have a valid basis for a medical malpractice claim. And you won't be alone -- there are already plaintiffs suing for injury from infected scopes.

What Is Your Medical Malpractice Claim Worth?

If you are injured due to the negligence of a doctor or hospital or in a healthcare setting, you have a medical malpractice claim. How much it will be worth depends on many factors.

The biggest issue is the extent of injury you’ve suffered, and that will largely dictate what you can recover. But there is also the opposition to consider: who you are suing. You may be bringing claims against multiple defendants and that could impact recovery. Here are some basic damages considerations.

Real Hoverboard Is Fraught With Potential Hazards

Since before Daedalus warned Icarus he’d burn his wings going too close to the sun, humans have been trying to fly. Now Franky Zapata — famous with gizmo fans for his water-powered Flyboards — is trying it again with a hoverboard that seems to do justice to the name.

Unlike hoverboards on two wheels, this contraption does allow the user to hover above the earth, quite high. But it doesn’t seem safer than the contraptions we’ve been reading about all year, which have been recalled by consumer safety authorities. True Back to the Future fans will still be disappointed, too, as this is not a gravity defying device and it looks likely to cause injuries should it ever be available for mass use.

We depend on our jobs for our livelihood. And getting hurt on the job shouldn't take that livelihood away. That's why employers are required to carry workers' compensation insurance -- to compensate employees injured while working.

Many workers' comp questions cover the types of injuries that may be covered, and the oversimplified answer is: work-related injuries. But what about the more procedural issues of workers' comp, like when you must file or whether you can sue your employer? Here are nine of the most pressing workers' compensation questions:

Coverage for Car Accidents With Uninsured Motorists

It is commonly know that you can’t squeeze blood from a stone, and the same could be said for getting money for injuries from uninsured or underinsured drivers. Of course everyone is technically liable for the injuries they cause due to negligence, which is one reason that state minimum insurance requirements exist.

But cases have to be proven and you must successfully sue to collect damages, and there may be little point to suing someone who cannot afford any insurance, although a negligence case shouldn’t be ruled out entirely. Still, you do have some options. So let’s take a look at cars, insurance, and accidents.

Bike Accident Injury: Insurance Claims and Legal Options

Bikes have been steadily moving up the ranks of modes of transportation as commuters become more health conscious. That means more bicycles on the roads and more accidents between cyclists and everyone else.

If you are very seriously injured in a bicycle accident, you should consult with a personal injury attorney and have your claim assessed. A negligence suit may be the right route for your recovery. But if you are only relatively mildly injured, say in a small fender bender or routine accident, you may still be able to recover expenses through a variety of insurance policies.

As a country, our views on alcoholism and alcoholics have evolved over time: instead of treating big drinkers as characters to be revered or "town drunk" characters to be laughed at, we now understand alcoholism as a medical syndrome that can have catastrophic effects on those drinking and nearby.

This more nuanced understanding can lead to more and better treatment options from medical professionals and social service providers, and more empathy from friends and loved ones, but what about from employers? Can an employee get workers' compensation if he or she is an alcoholic?

Does Workers' Comp Cover Volunteers?

Workers’ compensation is for paid workers who contribute to the fund, so what happens when a volunteer gets hurt on the job-not-job? Who will pay for injury?

We can’t all devote our lives to public service, which is why many people do good by volunteering. But before you give or take free labor, consider liability for injury.

After an Accident: Insurance Claim or Lawsuit?

Injury can be compensated through insurance claims or with a damages award after a lawsuit if you can prove the defendant or defendants were negligent. Although neither method guarantees recovery and nether is pain-free, there are substantial differences in the processes and the expense of attempting to recover in one context versus the other.

In most accident or injury situations it’s wise to first attempt recovery for injury through insurance. Filing a lawsuit is a good idea after an insurance claim has been denied, or after extremely grave injuries where extensive compensation will be needed for a long time or even a lifetime. Let’s look at the issues involved.

Top 5 Legal Tips for Gym Injuries

Gym injuries are not unusual -- after all, that's where you go to get physically fit and sometimes you overdo it. But when things go awry and you find yourself injured because someone else did something stupid or negligent or irresponsible, they may be liable. Here are five legal tips for gym members.

In an unexpected, if not unprecedented, criminal trial, the former CEO of Massey Energy Company Don Blankenship was sentenced to a year in prison on conspiracy charges for violating federal mine safety laws.

As Senator Joe Manchin III, who was the governor of West Virginia when an explosion in a Massey Energy-owned Upper Big Branch mine killed 29 miners in 2010, told The New York Times, “I never heard of anyone thinking that that could happen or would happen, because it had never happened before.”

Common Carrier Liability in Light of Amtrak Crash in PA

Last weekend an Amtrak train derailed near Philadelphia, killing two people and injuring 35, according to ABC News. The injuries were not life threatening, the Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency announced immediately after the accident, but that’s not likely to be the end of the story for Amtrak.

In fact, it seems very likely that the passengers who crashed right before reaching Philadelphia will sue for any damages arising from this train accident. So let’s take a look at proving a case of negligence against a common carrier.

Getting Paid: Collecting on a Judgment or Jury Award

So you won your suit against a defendant and were awarded money in the form of a judgment but now you don't know what to do. How do you go about collecting on a judgment or jury award?

A judgment is a court order and enforceable. Although the precise details will depend on where you are attempting to collect and a state's specific process, let's look at the general principles behind judgment and collection.

Reasons to Sue a Business for Personal Injury

When we go out to eat or shop or play, we don’t expect to pay with a personal injury. But in fact that happens more often than we might care to consider.

There are many ways that people get hurt when they are out and about. If you happen to get hurt on the premises of a business, you can sue for your injury and will succeed if you can show negligence. Let’s take a look at some common claims that arise out of our engagements with the business community.

Can I Sue a Doctor for Patient Profiling?

Patient profiling is a term used to describe a kind of discrimination by doctors. When a healthcare provider treats a patient based on their “type” rather than assessing them individually, that is profiling, and it can lead to problems in treatment.

Doctors should assess each patient individually, but profiling alone is not likely going to be a basis for a lawsuit against a doctor or hospital, unless that profiling manifested in medical malpractice. So let’s explore the distinction between profiling, which is certainly unpleasant, and negligence law, which is based on actual injury.