Articles Posted in Personal Injury Law

One of the important factors in any personal injury claim is determine “liability,” or responsibility for the injury. Typically, personal injury claims will involve situations in which one person was negligent, and that negligence establishes that person’s liability for the injuries caused to other people in the incident. Often, that negligence is crystal clear. If one car is stopped waiting at a red light and is suddenly rear-ended by a second vehicle, the driver of that second vehicle will almost always be the person found “negligent” or “at fault” for causing the collision.

header3But this isn’t always the case. Imagine, for example, a driver preparing to enter a roadway from a parking lot — there appears to be an opening in traffic for him to safely enter, but as he drives forward he collides with another vehicle that was speeding down the road. In this situation, the driver entering the road should have taken more time to observe traffic to be certain it was safe to move forward, but the speeding driver should also have been operating his vehicle within the speed limit.

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It is not uncommon for those involved in a traumatic event to experience an array of emotional reactions. Working in a personal injury law firm, I meet people who have lost movement in their limbs, lost their limbs, experience disfigurement, suffer brain injury and some clients have to deal with the  loss of a loved one due to a life altering event.  Additionally, if a person was relatively healthy but then must deal with chronic pain for the rest of their life, emotional trauma can follow.

Emotional trauma manifests itself differently in people.  Some symptoms of emotional trauma may include:

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In each knee, we have a menisci. (Plural: meniscus) We don’t think of these C-shaped rubbery disks much until they cause us problems.  The menisci disperse our body weight which keeps our knees steady and our bodies balanced.  So when they start to give us problems, our entire life can be turned upside down.  It’s only then we realize how much we depend on the knee meniscus.

Meniscus tears in the knees often occur in athletes bodies.  Sports that require pivoting, turning, or squatting like basketball, soccer, tennis and football can cause this type of injury.

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It seems more and more of us are wanting to use multiple approaches to our health.  We still call our primary MD or see an ER doctor and then pick up and use our prescription.  But for many of us, the next step is to go to our local health food store and learn more about what options are available for natural healing.

Essential oils remain a simple go-to that add another healing component to our road to recovery.  Essential oils can be used hand in hand with traditional Western methods of recovery.

It is rare for  pregnant women to experience vaginal cord prolapse.  Of  the 1 in 300 cases that this happens, most vaginal cord prolapses are for reasons unrelated to car accidents. Umbilical cord prolapse is typically related to fetal abnormalities, having a baby in breech position, having an unusually long umbilical cord or due to carrying multiple fetuses.  In a few rare cases, after a traumatic auto impact a woman can experience umbilical prolapse, especially if the impact sets of a premature labor. If a mother already had one of these abnormal circumstances, a severe impact while pregnant, may trigger a premature birth or ruptured membrane which then can lead to umbilical cord prolapse.

If an expectant mother’ amniotic sac breaks after a car accident and  the mother-to-be feels that the umbilical cord has slipped out into the vagina she will want to take pressure off the cord.  Stop standing. By getting onto your hands and knees, this will help remove some pressure. Additionally, this naturally pushes the uterus up and keeps the baby’s head from putting pressure on the cord.  If you can feel the cord has protruded, use a clean towel and support the cord until help arrives.  Providing support prevents gravity from allowing the cord to prolapse farther.

witness
Most of us know the rules of conduct following a minor auto accident: pull over out of the way of traffic and exchange insurance information with the other driver – but we would like to add another important task – look for and identify any corroborating witness.  This is especially important in certain types of collisions.

The Red Light

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Falling trees or tree limbs have sadly resulted in severe debilitating injuries and even death.  An injured party has the right to seek compensation for their damages, pain and suffering, wage loss, future wage loss, necessary and reasonable medical expenses, anticipated future expenses, mental anguish and past or future impairment of ability to enjoy life.  Compensation can be collected from the responsible party.  However, from time to time, the party we believe to be responsible for the claim may deny liability of the damages caused by the falling-tree stating the fallen tree was an ‘Act of God.’

The definition of an Act of God varies. Court rulings clarify the legal use of this argument.  For the most part, an Act of God defense must demonstrate that the circumstance was so abnormal and unusual in nature that no human assistance or human influence would have changed the event.  An Act of God defense must demonstrate that the falling tree could not have been prevented by ordinary human foresight.

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Law enforcement does a wonderful job in keeping our streets safe. But from time to time, severe injury and even death has occurred when law enforcement failed to detain a drunk driver.

The most commonly litigated cases that have a successful outcome in behalf of the injured party that involve this area of law tends to be cases when law enforcement officials were aware of the drunken state of an individual and allowed the individual to drive away which subsequently led to severe injury or death of another person.

ankle fracture
A fracture of the ankle may occur to a person involved in a motor vehicle collision.  A fracture involving the talus, a bone that makes up the lowest part of the ankle joint, is usually apparent in people involved in a motor vehicle collision.  Notwithstanding, this injury can also be seen in victims of falls or snowboarders.

The talus is plays a large role in connecting the foot, leg and body. This particular part of the ankle also helps us transfer weight and pressure evenly across the ankle.

Many of us engage in recreational activities and sports that expose us to the slight but not inconsequential risk of getting hurt while involved in the activity. We may join an adult softball league or enroll our kids in school sports. The adrenaline junkies among us may choose skydiving or mountain climbing. And every year, a certain number of people get injured — sometimes seriously — as a result. When this happens, is someone legally liable for those injuries?

assumption of risk
Answering this question will often involve a legal concept called “assumption of risk,” which can be broken down into two categories: primary assumption of risk and secondary assumption of risk. The question in primary assumption of the risk is whether there was any duty at all owed to the injured person to protect that person from risks inherent in the activity. If there was a duty owed, then secondary assumption of the risk addresses whether the injured person voluntarily chose to ignore the additional risk posed to them by a breach of this duty.