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Personal Injury Blog

How Your Trip to the Emergency Room Can Effect Your Personal Injury Case

Thursday, April 18, 2019

If you were in any kind of accident, if it was serious enough, you will find yourself on the way to the emergency room. The doctors and nurses that work there provide a valuable service to anyone with injuries, be it minor or severely life-threatening. They not only provide care but injury assessment as well. However, like your behavior at the accident scene, what happens in the emergency room is important to your personal injury case as well.

Assessing Your Injuries

When you are in the emergency room after an accident, this is not the time to have a stiff upper lip and put on a strong facade. The nurses and doctors will be assessing your injuries so they can get you treatment and prioritize the worst patients in triage. This documentation of injuries can be essential to your case. If you didn't want to mention your back pain, but ended up needing treatment after a trip to the emergency room, it could be argued that your back was not injured in the accident itself. You could have hurt it hours later lifting a box for all anyone else knows.

When taken to the emergency room, always be honest with every single pain or anything that does not feel right. This is how medical professionals treat you and it is how you can get compensation for those injuries caused in the accident.

Sign Carefully

Once you have been stabilized in the emergency room, you will likely be barraged with a large amount of paperwork. If possible, you want someone who was not in the trauma of an accident to read it before you sign it. Most importantly, you want to make sure health insurance covers the visit if applicable. You also want to make sure that anyone who isn't a doctor doesn't slip you any extra paperwork such as a liability waiver. Always read any document before signing it or you will almost assuredly regret it later.

Keep The Accident Descriptions Short

It is likely that at some point, a doctor or nurse will ask you what happened. You want to keep the answer as short as possible. When you are asked this question, the nurse or doctor is only trying to get an idea of what they should check. If you were rear-ended, this is an indicator they may want to check for a concussion, whiplash, or other brain and spine injuries. Sometimes this pain doesn't manifest right away, so they want to catch it before it becomes a problem.

The issue with your explanation of the accident is that the nurse or doctor may have to tell it to someone else if they ask. Doctors and nurses are busy people, so if you gave a long and detailed explanation to them, they are likely to paraphrase it or get crucial details wrong. While you want to give medical staff full details on pain and other ailments, you want to keep how you got them as short and simple as possible. This statement may even make it into your medical records. Once it is there, it is the statement that your case will have to stick with.

Need Help?

Unfortunately, if you are in an accident, you probably will make some mistakes in the emergency room. People never expect to get in an accident, so they don't know they need to prepare for how to act when they do get into one. However, even if you made some mistakes at the scene or in the ER, we can help you. Contact us today to see how the Law Firm of Freeman & Freeman can help you get the compensation that you need for your personal injury accident, even if you didn't do your claim any favors.

How Long Do Personal Injury Cases Take?

Thursday, April 11, 2019

Time is precious. You will find that it becomes even more precious when you are injured, have bills due, and are largely depending on a personal injury settlement to get everything paid. However, personal injury cases are often not quick closes. Depending on the nature of the accident, they can take a while to come to a conclusion. For some, they may wonder if the suit is even worth it, but that often depends on how long the case takes.

Factors that Affect the Time of a Personal Injury Case

Every type of personal injury case is different. How long a premises liability case takes may be vastly different from an auto accident case. Furthermore, each individual personal injury case is different as well. This means predicting the time it will take, even on average, can be near impossible. However, there are some common factors that do affect the time your personal injury case will take.

  • Proof – Even in personal injury cases, you are charged with the burden of proof. In some cases, you need to prove that negligence was responsible for your injury. In other cases, you have to prove a breach of duty. The more you have to prove, the longer the case may take. Not only because there is more work to do, but there is more evidence that your lawyer has to gather.

  • Treatment – The more treatment that you need, the more it could push back the actual legal proceedings. Your lawyer will be doing the majority of the work, but it can be difficult if you were, for example, recovering from surgeries.

  • Preparing Witnesses – Your lawyer may need time to prepare their witnesses. Especially expert witnesses that need to actually come to the area. Furthermore, if the claim requires any forensic experts, it will take time for these witnesses to examine the evidence.

  • Complications – It can happen, but rarely is a personal injury case straight out of a textbook. There is always some kind of complication that will add time to the case. In fact, some injured clients can do it to themselves. If they were to lie or exaggerate parts of their case, it is only adding time to how long it will take.

  • The Defendant – In many cases, you collect compensation from the insurance company of the other person. These cases can be quicker to resolve depending on the proof provided. If the evidence is strong for the injured party, the claims adjuster won't fight it as hard. However, if you are pressing a personal injury claim against a business, such as a department store, they can infinitely extend out the timeline. The more resources the defendant has to pay for a legal team, the more they can draw a case out. In some cases, they may do so just to get the case against them dropped.

All of these factors can work to extend the timeline of your personal injury case. If you want to know an estimate for your case in particular, it is best to talk it over with your lawyer. If you need the money, your lawyer may also be able to suggest options to help make ends meet until the case reaches a conclusion.

Need Help?

Have you been hurt and need a personal injury suit to help cover your medical bills and other damages? The process sounds easy enough, but personal injury suits are a lot more complicated than the look. You need help, and we are here for you. Contact us today to see how the Law Office of Freeman & Freeman can help you get the compensation that you need.


6 Common Causes of Wrongful Death Medical Malpractice Lawsuits

Thursday, April 04, 2019

When you go to a doctor, you want to know that they are going to help you. But unfortunately, a lot of times a doctor or a medical professional makes a mistake that causes their patient's death. Below are six common reasons for wrongful death lawsuits due to medical malpractice.

Missed Diagnosis or Misdiagnosis

A common reason that people file wrongful death lawsuits due to medical malpractice is because of a healthcare provider not correctly diagnosing a medical condition that threatens their patient's life.

Another situation that is similar is when a doctor completely misdiagnoses their patient, or they diagnose them with something the patient doesn't have.

Birth & Delivery

When what should be a happy occasion becomes tragic, this is one of the most heartbreaking reasons for medical malpractice. When a child or mother dies during birth, it's something that a lot of families have trouble enduring.

It doesn't matter if the death happens prior to, during, or following the birth, a doctor might be in deep trouble legally if their negligence caused a death.

Surgical Mistakes

Mistakes during surgery are the misjudgments or mistakes that could occur during surgery. If the patient dies because of this mistake, whether they die while on the surgical table or it happens, later, because of surgery complications, it's important to seek justice.

A wrongful death lawsuit from medical malpractice due to surgical errors can be really hard for the family to fight since surgery is almost always risky, but it can happen.  

Abuse in a Nursing Home

The last thing that someone wants to think about is that their loved one is being abused in the nursing home, but it happens. That's why it's one of the most common reasons for wrongful death lawsuits due to medical malpractice.  

When you believe that someone's died because of negligence or abuse in a nursing home, it's essential that you speak with a lawyer to find out what they can do to help you. You trusted the people in the nursing home to care for your loved one. If your loved one died because of them, you should hold them accountable.

Wrong Medications and Prescriptions

One type of medical malpractice that people don't think about is when a doctor prescribes the wrong medication. If someone has died because they were prescribed or given the wrong medication, this could lead to a wrongful death lawsuit.

This could happen because they prescribed the medication that killed the patient. But it also could the result of them not prescribing the right medicine that could have saved someone's life.

Prolonged or Delayed Treatment

It's really heartbreaking when someone dies. But it's even worse when they died due to the doctor delaying their treatment or because the doctor took too long to diagnose their loved one.

This kind of lawsuit also can happen if someone didn't begin the needed treatment in enough time because their doctor didn't diagnose them quickly enough.

Whether the patient didn't get their treatment, or the treatment started too late, having a wrongful death lawsuit might help with settling things down and ensuring that the doctor is held responsible.

Even though filing a lawsuit isn't going to bring your loved one back, it can help you with getting some closure and help with paying their final bills. It also helps to ensure that they're held responsible and that they won't do it to another patient. The last thing that you want is for someone to go through the pain and suffering that you are experiencing right now. Filling a lawsuit can help bring the medical professional's mistakes to light.


Coping with Brain Injuries Both Physically and Legally

Thursday, March 21, 2019

Few types of personal injury are more devastating and life-altering than a brain injury. Even the mildest, non-life threatening versions can still have a grave impact on your quality of life. They're not something to take lightly, especially if you've recently been in an accident that may have left you such an injury.

Just as bad if not worse, though, is dealing with the aftermath of this kind of injury. Both for yourself or a loved one, coping with brain injuries can be a lot of unpleasant work as you try to adjust to life and find the proper treatment. Even more troubling can be how difficult it is to get proper compensation for your injury if it wasn't your fault.

For a lot of people, it's hard not to feel like you're completely on your own when you've suffered a brain injury. That doesn't have to be the case, though. To help you get off on the right foot in adjusting to everything, here's some advice on coping with a brain injury both physically and legally.

Acceptance

The first step to dealing with a brain injury is the simple act of accepting that it's happened. While this sounds simple on the surface, it's much harder than many would expect. It often means realizing that there are things that you once enjoyed or took for granted that simply aren't possible due to things like loss of motor functions, impaired senses, or any number of other issues that can come about as a result of this injury.

However, it's equally important that you don't try to force yourself to move on immediately. Much like you'd grieve a loved one's death, you're in a period of grieving for yourself. Accepting your injury and any resulting disability can take months or even years to fully come to terms with. The only thing to always keep in mind is not to give up.

Medicine

Proper medical care is obviously an important part of coping with a brain injury. Both immediately after and in the future, you'll likely need competent and experienced care to help you recover and deal with the aftermath.

In many cases, you'll likely need to see a specialist in your particular type of injury. The kind of care they may prescribe will depend on the severity, as well, so try to stay informed of your condition on your own. Additionally, don't be afraid to look for a second opinion. Brain injuries are a tricky subject and getting more eyes on the problem is almost never a bad thing. All of this will make adjusting to your injury that much easier.

Legal Counsel

No matter what type of injury you have, it's important to have proper legal representation to stand beside you in your lowest moments. This is especially true for brain injuries, as there are numerous pitfalls and annoyances you can encounter when trying to help yourself. One such problem could be in holding people accountable for the accident that caused your injury, the process of proving negligence on their part often being arduous and difficult for various reasons. 

Not only that, it can often be a battle to get proper compensation from your insurance company. As your insurance is motivated by profit above all else, there are numerous ways they might try to short change you on the money you should be paid out. It's not uncommon for them to even accuse you of outright faking your injury, as certain brain injuries are hard to spot through medical imaging.

To avoid this, you'll need legal counsel experienced in these types of cases. Places like the Law Firm of Freeman & Freeman are one effective option, as they have extensive experience helping those in need get what they're owed in situations of traumatic injury.


Motorcycle Accidents Caused By Road Defects

Thursday, March 14, 2019

Most motorcycle accidents typically involve two drivers or at least the ones that turn into litigation. Do to someone's negligence, a crash occurs and the party not at fault will seek compensation for their injuries. It isn't a simple matter by any stretch, but it can be done. However, where motorcycle accidents and compensation get more complicated is when the accident wasn't caused by another driver, but by the road itself.

Every motorcyclist has driven on some spectacularly bad roads before. However, every time you take that bike out onto a bad road, you are taking a pretty big risk. When a car drives over something like loose gravel or a pothole, it doesn't really affect them. However, if a motorcyclist hits a pothole or loose gravel in the wrong way, it means a pretty bad accident.

Roadway hazards include:

  • Rough Seams – Roads are constructed so that there is typically a seam in the middle as they only typically do one side at a time. When the road is finished, however, that seam should be minimal. That is unfortunately not always the case. If you hit this uneven seam while doing something like passing another vehicle, it could be dangerous.

  • Gravel – Gravel road will always be difficult for bikers. Even just loose gravel on paved roads can be an issue. Essentially they can cause the front wheels of a motorcycle to slide out.

  • Railroad Crossings – The reason railroad crossings are required to be properly marked is not only to watch for trains but so drivers can take proper care while crossing them. They are rough to cars but even rougher on motorcycles.

  • Bad Design – We have all rode on roads that were a little iffy. Maybe there was a blind corner or a particularly tight curve without a guard rail. These are dangerous and should be dealt with by the governing entity before someone gets hurt.

Getting Compensation For Motorcycle Accidents Caused By Road Defects

The obvious difficulty when looking to recover compensation from a motorcycle accident caused by any kind of road defect is that there is often not one person responsible. Instead of going after another driver as you would with other accident cases, you instead need to seek compensation for the state or city that is responsible for maintaining that roadway

As you would expect, the city or state will try very hard to get out of paying you for an accident they caused by likely not wanting to spend any money maintaining that particular road. Many will try to insist that it was your fault for one reason or another. This is why it is crucial that if you need to file a claim against a government, something that is vastly more complicated than the normally complicated personal injury cases, that you hire a knowledgeable attorney. You can trust that the government entity will bring in their best lawyers to save themselves both money and reputation, so you need a lawyer to evaluate the success rate of your case and make sure you get that compensation that you need.

Need Help?

Were you a victim of a motorcycle accident that is fully to blame on a road defect that should have been fixed? You have a difficult case ahead of you, but it is not impossible. Contact us today to see what the Law Office of Freeman & Freeman can do to help you recover compensation from the government that was responsible for maintaining that road. Just because another vehicle wasn't involved doesn't mean you can't recover damages from your motorcycle accident if the road itself was to blame.



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From our offices in Woodland Hills, California, Freeman & Freeman, LLP, provides legal advice and representation for clients in communities throughout the state, including those in Burbank, Glendale, Encino, Sherman Oaks, Van Nuys, Tarzana, Santa Clarita, Agoura Hills, Reseda, Canoga Park, Chatsworth, Northridge, Granada Hills, Pacoima, Panorama City, North Hollywood, Thousand Oaks, Simi Valley, Lancaster, Palmdale and Alhambra.