Why Are Bicycle Accidents So Traumatizing?

Any sort of accident that results in physical and emotional injuries can be difficult for the victim to process. Sometimes accidents happen very quickly, without much warning and are unexpected. This can be the case for those who ride bicycles as means of transportation, leisure or even sport. Any situation in which a person is sharing the road with a vehicle, is at risk for being hit. In the article here, we have talked more about why exactly bicycle accidents can be so traumatizing for the rider.

What is the main reason bicyclists get hit by cars?

Car drivers may cause a bicycle accident for a variety of reasons. Most drivers do not watch out for bicyclists nearly often enough, and may not notice a rider is next to them until it is too late. Additionally, drivers may be distracted on their cell phone or speeding in order to make it to work on-time. Unfortunately, bicyclists may pay the price for such negligence and carelessness.

What are the most common injuries that may result?

Injuries associated with being struck by a car are endless. When a vehicle exterior made of such firm materials collides with the fragility of the human body, life-threatening conditions may arise. A more extensive list of potential bicyclist injuries are listed as follows:

  • Concussion
  • Fractured skull
  • Neck & back injuries
  • Dislocated shoulder
  • Broken bones
  • Road rash
  • Muscle sprains or tears
  • Anxiety, depression, new fears
  • Facial wounds
  • Cuts from broken windshield
  • Deep bruising
  • Pelvic fracture

Can you tell me more about anxiety, depression and new fears?

Any person who has undergone a traumatic experience which caused pain can develop psychological difficulties. A bicyclist who has been hit by a car may find that he or she has started to feel anxious, depressed and have new fears about getting back onto a bike. If you are having such feelings, they should be communicated with your doctor so you can receive the help that you need to process what happened. A common condition that arises for those who were part of a particularly distressing event is called post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Signs that you may be affected by PTSD after your bicyclist accident can include:

  1. Replaying the crash in your mind over & over
  2. Avoiding areas that remind you of where you got hit
  3. Withdrawing from friends & family
  4. Experiencing panic attacks
  5. Feeling down, worrisome or hopeless
  6. Triggers in environment cause you anxiety
  7. Changes in eating habits
  8. Difficulty falling asleep
  9. Feeling on edge or irritable
  10. Being too afraid to get back onto your bike

What if I want to sue the driver who hit me, am I eligible for compensation?

If the driver was at-fault for the accident happening, then you may be entitled to receiving repayment for your injury costs. Medical bills can quickly pile high especially if your condition was severe due to being hit. It is uncommon for a bicyclist to walk away from being clipped by a car totally unscathed. A bicycle accident attorney can meet with you and help you decide if filing a civil lawsuit is the route you wish to take.

 


 

Thank you to our friends and contributors at Barry P. Goldberg for their insight into bike accidents.

What Happens if I File for Bankruptcy During my Divorce?

You may be worried that your financial situation will affect your divorce as well, and it will in a few ways. Decisions about establishing child custody or support is usually unaffected by filing for bankruptcy during divorce proceedings. However, decisions about division of property will be halted.

All your property and assets become property of your bankruptcy estate when you file. All attempts to control your property or take it into possession are then halted by an automatic stay. This means that it cannot be handled or divided during your divorce proceedings. Whether you file for Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy will better determine how your divorce will be affected.

Filing for Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

Filing for bankruptcy can cause further complications in your divorce proceedings. A bankruptcy trustee will be appointed to you regardless if you file for seven or thirteen. In the case you file for Chapter 7, the trustee has power to sell your property to pay any creditors. The trustee will have to decide which assets are property of your bankruptcy estate and if proceeds from their sale can be used to pay creditors.

Joint property opened with your ex may even be entirely sold if you cannot exempt your interest value in the property. If the ex’s interest in the property is determined to be not included in your bankruptcy estate, then the trustee would pay the sum of the value of their interest to them after the sale of the property.

Filing for Chapter 13 Bankruptcy

A trustee is also assigned to your estate when you file for Chapter 13 bankruptcy. However, they do not sell property to creditors. In fact, a trustee must determine the value of your property and interests in order to determine the effects on your repayment plan to creditors. The amount of non-exempt property you have will affect how much you must pay.

A Chapter 13 repayment plan may take three to five years to finish paying off. Usually, you and your ex will have to get permission from bankruptcy court to finish dividing property in divorce proceedings.

Custody and Domestic Support Affected by Automatic Stay

Automatic stay may stop the process of division of property, but it won’t affect court decisions of child custody and support. Filing for bankruptcy will not affect the process of determination of who maintains custody and who pays child support; it will not stop those proceeding like it will prohibit division of property and assets.

Consult an Attorney

Bankruptcy and family law overlap in a number of ways. If you are unsure how filing for bankruptcy will affect your divorce proceedings, consult a divorce lawyer Austin, TX residents trust. They can help guide you through any complications and will provide you with knowledge of any possible issues you may face along the way.

 


 

Thank you to our friends and contributors at The Law Office of Ryan S. Dougay for their insight into divorce law.

How to Document a Car Crash in Preparation for a Lawsuit

If you have been involved in a car crash that was not your fault and you plan to file a lawsuit against the other driver, it is important that you start to gather evidence for your case as soon as you are able. If you wait too long to start gathering documentation of the accident, some of the evidence may be lost or destroyed, making it harder for you to win at trial or receive a settlement offer that you deserve. Here are a few tips for how to document a car crash in preparation for a lawsuit:

  1. Get the names of witnesses: If you are able after a crash, get the names of any people who saw the accident. Make sure to get their contact information, preferably a phone number and address. Often these witnesses will be identified in a police report, but it never hurts to make your own record. Being able to identify and locate witnesses could be a very important part of making your case at trial.
  2. Take pictures: Again, if you are able, take pictures of the crash. Make sure that you are being safe, staying out of traffic, and that you prioritize getting any medical care that you need and helping others who may have been injured in the crash. Listen to a police officer’s instructions, and be mindful that other people involved in the accident may not want their photograph taken. After the incident, if you still have your car, take photos of the damage, and consider photographing any injury to your body, such as cuts and bruises.
  3. Get a copy of reports: Request a copy of the police report and any report made by your insurance company. Though these documents are relatively easy to obtain later in the case, getting them soon after the incident can help you evaluate your claim by reading how an objective party recorded the crash. You may also be able to correct any errors that you see in your insurance record.
  4. Keep your records: Keep copies of the records you have regarding the crash including towing records, records from a salvage yard or repair shop, and estimates and receipts for repair. If you suffered physical injury during the crash, keep records from you doctor visits, including bills and referrals to other providers for physical therapy or rehabilitation services. Also, make sure that you keep pharmacy records, copies of your prescriptions, and related bills. While the previous three types of information discussed are important for proving that the accident was not your fault, information in step four will be important for proving how much money you are owned in the event of a lawsuit

Along with documenting the car crash, it is also important to considering hiring an automobile accident lawyer Naperville, IL trusts early in the life of your case. A qualified and competent attorney can give you advice for how to document the crash, can help you gather records, and can help you strategize regarding how to pursue your claim against the other driver. An attorney can also negotiate a settlement on your behalf, and, if necessary, will be prepared to take your case all the way to trial to reach a fair result for your claim.

 


 

Thank you to our friends and contributors at The Law Offices of Konrad Sherinian for their knowledge about car accidents and injuries.  

Article by Lang Wiseman Published on Law360.com — Insurance Bad Faith and Punitive Damages

Bad Faith

Insurance Bad Faith

Law360.com recently published an article by Lang Wiseman regarding Tennessee law on insurance bad faith and punitive damages.  The title of the article is “Are Punitive Damages Available in Tennessee Insurance Cases?

Following is an excerpt from the introduction of article:

“In recent years, state and federal court rulings in Tennessee have been inconsistent about whether punitive damages are available to a policyholder in an insurance coverage case.  This inconsistency arises out of differing interpretations of Tennessee’s “bad faith statute” in light of the Tennessee General Assembly’s passage of Tennessee Code Annotated § 56–8–113.”

For more information, please use the search tool on our website to locate and review additional articles and posts on business and insurance related matters, including FAQs.

_____________________________

Wiseman

Lang Wiseman

Lang Wiseman is the founding member of Wiseman Bray PLLC, and is a commercial litigator that Memphis, Tennessee knows and trusts when it comes to business and insurance matters. Lang is an honors graduate of Harvard Law School after graduating as the top graduate in the College of Business at the University of Tennessee where he was a scholarship basketball player for the Vols.  Lang concentrates his practice in commercial litigation and is an AV-rated lawyer annually recognized by his peers as one of the Top 100 Super Lawyers in Tennessee.  Among other civic endeavors, he serves on the Board of Trustees of the University of Tennessee, the Governor’s Council for Judicial Appointments, and the Vice-Chair of the Advisory Commission to the Tennessee Supreme Court on Rules and Practice of Procedure.

Memphis Car Crash, Wrongful Death & Injury

According to the Commercial Appeal headline and story from Wednesday, April 16, 2014:  “One person is dead and a half dozen others were taken to area hospitals after a 10-vehicle crash in Raleigh Wednesday evening.  Police were still confirming details about how the 10 vehicles collided at Covington Pike and Raleigh LaGrange.”
Being injured in a motor vehicle accident is especially traumatizing if it involved another driver and they were at-fault.  Wrongful death is, for obvious reasons, particularly tragic.  In one instant, you and the life of your loved ones can be  life can change forever.

Expensive medical bills, vehicle damage, and the inability to go to work can be overwhelming, and not just financially.  Injuries to the head, neck, spine and back can develop into permanent impairments.  Car wreck laws in Tennessee provide recovery against at-fault drivers for medical expenses, lost wages and pain and suffering.  Read more about the type of damages you can recover here.
If you have a question concerning your Memphis or Raleigh car wreck, motor vehicle accident, or wrongful death case, call or schedule a consultation with our Memphis-based accident lawyers at Wiseman Bray PLLC today.

Accidents Involving Parked Semis

It is intimidating to share the road with 18-wheelers even in good driving conditions. Most automobile drivers are on high alert when in the presence of these large trucks and exercise extra caution when passing or following these vehicles. But if you come across an 18-wheeler parked on the side of the road or even stopped in a lane of traffic and you are unable to stop, it is not unlike hitting a solid brick wall.  These accidents can cause severe, long-term and permanently disabling injuries and in many cases, involve fatalities. Did the truck driver follow all the required safety precautions when it stopped? How difficult is it to pursue legal action with a trucking company ? What are examples of 18-wheelers causing accidents while legally stopped?

 

  • It is extremely dangerous for a large truck to move at a very slow speed on an interstate, especially in the dark or in inclimate weather. Many drivers are fooled by the lights on the truck, thinking it is traveling at a much higher speed than in actuality. There may be several reasons for the truck to drive slow — was there something wrong mechanically with the truck causing the driver to travel at a speed considerably lower than the rest of the traffic? If the driver did not follow federal requirements that state if there is a mechanical malfunction, the driver needs to pull off the road, set up flares or the triangular warning reflectors. If the driver did not follow the correct protocol, they may be found guilty of negligence. If the truck is traveling at a very low speed because of gradual inclines in the road, they must use the right lane — a designated climbing lane if one is available — and turn on their four-way flashers.

 

  • There are occasions where an 18-wheeler stops in the center of the road because of a mechanical malfunction and are unable to get to the shoulder. The same federal regulations go into effect as if they were on the shoulder. The driver needs to  put flares or orange triangular reflectors 50 feet apart to give drivers a heads-up and time to take action to avert the stopped truck. If the trucker does not comply with these regulations, either because they chose not to or their employer did not supply them with the flares or reflectors, they run a very high risk of having someone run into the back of the truck. These crashes seldom end well, as the drivers are usually traveling at a relatively high speed and can result in serious injuries or deaths.

 

  • A truck may be disabled in the middle of the road as a result of a previous accident. Many times, it is discovered that the truck was traveling at an unsafe speed and flips over going around a bend. Drivers coming along after the truck unable to see the disabled truck and crash into the back of the 18-wheeler. If the truck driver is found to be driving in an unsafe manner, the law states that the trucking company or person driving are responsible for any accidents resulting from their irresponsible actions. In this case, it may be in your best interest to reach out to a truck accident attorney Dekalb County GA residents rely on.

 

Sharing the road with 18-wheelers can be safe so long as both the truck driver and the automobile driver both follow the rules of the road and remain attentive to conditions and circumstances happening around them.

 


If you find yourself a victim of a truck accident or want to know more information about these cases, you may benefit from reaching out to attorney Andrew Lynch, P.C.

Understanding Informed Consent in Medical Malpractice Cases

As a patient, you have the legal right to be advised of major risks before undergoing a medical procedure. If your physician failed to inform you of those risks and you subsequently suffered harm then you may have the basis of a medical malpractice claim. Ultimately, you may be best served by first consulting a medical malpractice lawyer to determine if your circumstances merit legal action against your physician. If your claim is strong enough to pursue, we can assist you in filing a personal injury claim with your doctor’s insurance company. If the carrier refuses to pay you a fair settlement for your damages, a medical malpractice lawyer from our firm can escalate the claim to a lawsuit. Our experience in the courtroom and our record of successful cases is often sufficient to convince an insurance company to return to the bargaining table.

 

Informed Consent

 

A doctor has the legal, ethical, and moral responsibility to provide their patients with the information necessary for the patient to make informed decisions about their healthcare. A medical malpractice lawyer might explain that this is informed consent. Examples of the type of information that a doctor should share with their patient include:

 

  •         A description of the treatment or procedure that the physician is considering providing to the patient.
  •         The reason for providing that treatment or procedure, which should include the optimum outcome.
  •         Information about the potential complications and key risks associated with the treatment or procedure.
  •         The availability, if any, of alternative treatments or procedures and the risks and potential outcomes.
  •         How likely it is that the suggested treatment or procedure will be successful.

 

Making Healthcare Decisions

 

As the patient, you should have been provided the occasion to ask your doctor questions about their treatment or proposed treatment for you. You should also be given some time to consider your healthcare decisions.

 

Assessing Informed Consent

 

In determining if you have a valid medical malpractice claim, your medical malpractice lawyer may ask these questions:

 

  1.       Would most reasonable doctors have disclosed the risks of the proposed treatment or procedure to their patient?
  2.       Would most reasonable patients have declined the proposed treatment or procedure if they had been advised of the risks?

Exceptions to the Rule

 

Informed consent is not necessary in all circumstances. Specifically, if the patient is unconscious and they must be treated due to the emergency nature of their condition, the physician can act in order to try to save the patient’s life and does not require consent. (This assumes the patient is not a minor child and their parent or guardian is present.)

 

Establishing the Connection Between Lack of Informed Consent and Your Injury

 

When a physician does not receive informed consent from their patient prior to providing them with treatment, as long as the patient is not harmed, the patient does not have grounds for a medical malpractice claim. For it to be valid, there must be a clear connection between your injury and your lack of informed consent. Your medical malpractice lawyer may need to prove the following:

 

  •         If you had received the information regarding the risks and other issues, you would not have consented to the treatment.
  •         The injury you suffered was a known risk associated with the treatment, but you were not informed of that, and most reasonable physicians would have done so.

If you have concerns that you were the victim of medical malpractice, contact a skilled attorney, like a medical malpractice lawyer Houston, TX trusts, to schedule a free case review.


Thanks to our friends and contributors from John K. Zaid & Associates for their insight into medical malpractice.

Should I Hire a Lawyer After My Motorcycle Accident?

If you have been involved in a motorcycle accident, you likely have many questions. One of the big questions is probably whether or not to hire an attorney. Most accidents involving a motorcycle are destructive and require the involvement of insurance companies and legal action of some sort. In such case, it is vital to hire an attorney, because they have the experience and knowledge to ensure your rights and interests are protected. Even if the destruction is minimal, it is wise to speak with an attorney to obtain proper guidance. Below are some common questions in regards to hiring a lawyer.

What if I can’t afford to hire a lawyer?

For many people, the main reason for not hiring a lawyer is because they think they can’t afford to. If you believe you are unable to afford a lawyer, you may be surprised to know that having a lawyer can actually benefit you financially.

  •         Many motorcycle accident lawyers will offer a free consultation where they will review your case and determine if you have a strong claim
  •         Lawyers usually work on a contingency fee basis, meaning you will not have to pay anything upfront. Instead, a percentage of your settlement will go to them
  •         If the lawyer does not reach a settlement and you lose your case, you are not required to pay the lawyer
  •         The percentage of your settlement that goes to the lawyer will usually be less than what you would have received had you not had legal representation

Won’t my insurance company protect my rights?

Many people believe that having insurance coverage means that the insurance company will handle the accident and that no legal representation is necessary. While insurance companies are required to comply with the terms of the policy and pay the necessary claims, they are also a money-making business. This means that they will usually do what they can to pay as little as possible. A lawyer, like a motorcycle accident lawyer Fort Collins, CO relies on, has a legal obligation to advocate on your behalf, and they will work to reach a fair settlement.

Do I need a lawyer if the accident was minor and I didn’t sustain injuries?

Accident victims often believe if they were not injured or little damage was done in the accident, there is no need to hire a lawyer. Even if you appear to have sustained little or no injuries from the accident, more serious injuries may surface later. For this reason, it is important to seek medical attention regardless of the severity of the accident. It is also important to seek legal counsel in case you have sustained injuries so that you are able to recover damages from the at-fault party.

A motorcycle accident can be very stressful, especially if injuries and severe damage are involved. Hiring an experienced motorcycle accident lawyer can help relieve much of the stress by handling the legal matters at hand. He or she can review your case and help make a strong claim. In addition, they will negotiate a fair settlement all while protecting your rights and interests throughout the case.


Thanks to our friends and contributors from Cannon, Hadfield, Stieben & Doutt, LLC for their insight into motorcycle accident cases.

 

Injured while travelling on an airplane

Your Rights as an Airline Passenger

For so many, just the thought of air travel is stressful. Imagine after getting up the nerve to fly, there is some turbulence and an overhead compartment that was not secure comes open and a piece of luggage falls on your head. Unlikely? Probably, but not unheard of. As a result of getting hit in the head you have to go to the hospital to check out your injury. Because of the time spent at the emergency room, you missed a very important meeting, or your cruise sailed without you, or you missed a connecting flight. What recourse do you have?

If you have questions about your rights as a passenger and how to make sure the airline is held responsible for their negligence, contact an experienced personal injury lawyer Deer Park, TX residents trust. Also contact the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to report your issue.

In-flight injuries do not happen very often, depending upon how the accident happened will determine if you have any legal claims available to you.

Most of the in-flight accidents occur when luggage falls from the overhead bins. Injuries from rolling food carts are not all that uncommon either. The cart can run into passengers arms or shoulders as they roll by. Turbulence-related injuries occur on average to about 75 passengers per year.

Airlines are not responsible for injuries that happen because of an ‘act of God’, which is defined as unplanned occurrences in nature that are unpreventable A common act of God would be turbulence. An injury caused by turbulence is usually not the fault of the airline, as they cannot predict this condition, so long as the flight crew provided necessary information and instruction to protect passengers as best they could.

However, if the pilot was aware of oncoming turbulence and did not pass along the information to the passengers, the airline could be charged with negligence should there be any injuries caused by the turbulence. Furthermore, if the attendants did not

  • instruct passengers to stay in their seats with their seatbelts on,
  • securely stow away any personal items,
  • Position their seats in an upright position

and then someone is injured because of the turbulence, the airline may be held accountable.

If you were injured when baggage fell from an unlatched or incorrectly latched overhead bin, research needs to be done to determine whether the bin came open as a result of negligence from the attendant, or because the bin clasp was defective. If a design flaw caused the bin to come open during the flight, a claim may be filed against the manufacturer of the bin instead of the airline.

Another example of an accident that may have more than one cause if someone falls while on the exit ramp and it is discovered that the ramp had a rise in it that caused someone to trip. The ramp itself may have a manufacturing defect and the passenger can file a claim against the company who made the ramp. On the other hand, if the airline knew about the problem on the ramp and failed to warn passengers, the airline may also be held liable.

If you have questions about an injury you received while on an airplane, contact personal injury attorneys near you to discuss your situation and determine who was responsible for your injury and how they can help.


Thank you to our contributors at John K. Zaid & Associates for the above information.