Brien Roche Law http://www.brienrochelaw.com Wed, 18 May 2016 18:00:07 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Heart Attack Survival http://www.brienrochelaw.com/blog/heart-attack-survival/ http://www.brienrochelaw.com/blog/heart-attack-survival/#comments Wed, 18 May 2016 18:00:07 +0000 http://www.brienrochelaw.com/?p=9506 Heart Attack Survival from Brien Roche Law

Heart attack survival in large measure is a function of proper medical treatment.  Every 34 seconds someone in the U.S. has a heart attack.  Every 60 seconds someone in the U.S. dies of a heart attack. Heart Attack Survival-Causes and … Continue reading

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Heart Attack Survival from Brien Roche Law

Fairfax Injury Lawyer Brien Roche Addresses Heart Attack Survival

Brien Roche

Heart attack survival in large measure is a function of proper medical treatment.  Every 34 seconds someone in the U.S. has a heart attack.  Every 60 seconds someone in the U.S. dies of a heart attack.

Heart Attack Survival-Causes and Symptoms

A common form of heart disease is a build-up of fat and cholesterol or plaque in the arteries.  The heart attack occurs when a piece of that plaque breaks off.  The plaque then forms a clot.  The blood flow is restricted to the heart muscle.  The result is a heart attack.  The classic signs are chest pain, pain or discomfort in one or both arms, the back, shoulders, neck or stomach, shortness of breath.  There may also be sweating and nausea.  There may also be vomiting.  Several studies show however that at least a third of heart attack patients have no chest pain.  The older you are the more likely you are to have unusual symptoms.  As you get older your blood vessels get stiffer which tends to restrict the flow of blood.  As the coronary arteries close, that restriction in blood flow increases which can result in someone simply passing out.

Many symptoms associated with a heart attack can come and go.  That is not unusual.  The best way to deal with any such symptoms that appear to be the onset of a heart attack are to get to the hospital as quickly as possible.  Either en route or while waiting for the ambulance to arrive chew and swallow a regular uncoated 325 mg. aspirin.  This will thin the blood and enhance heart attack survival.

Heart Attack Survival-Explaining Symptoms

When medical care arrives make sure that you explain all of the symptoms.  Likewise you need to explain any other medication that you are on.  If the patient is on Viagra healthcare providers need to know that since that medication cannot be mixed with nitroglycerin which typically is given during a heart attack.

It’s important that your symptoms not be played down.  If it turns out that you’re not having a heart attack, all that means is simply that you go home happy.  If it turns out you are having a heart attack then a common procedure will be a balloon angioplasty.  This is designed to open up the blocked artery and restore blood flow.  This involves threading a catheter with a small inflatable balloon through the artery near your groin or wrist and then up to the site of the blockage.

Some common conditions that can be confused with a heart attack are pain in the abdominal area from gall stones, reflux which means that stomach acid is coming up into the esophagus which happens to be behind the heart, inflammation of the lining of the lungs, inflammation of the cartilage connecting the ribs to the breast bone and a pulled back or chest muscle.  All of those need to be ruled out as to the cause of the symptoms.

For more information about heart attack survival see the pages on Wikipedia.

for more personal injury news and views visit, Brien Roche Law

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Product Liability Litigation http://www.brienrochelaw.com/blog/product-liability-litigation/ http://www.brienrochelaw.com/blog/product-liability-litigation/#comments Tue, 17 May 2016 18:00:40 +0000 http://www.brienrochelaw.com/?p=9508 Product Liability Litigation from Brien Roche Law

Product Liability Litigation-Research Sources Product liability litigation can be complicated.  There are a number of excellent sources for research dealing with these types of cases: www.recalls.gov is a site where you can search the records of each major federal product … Continue reading

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Product Liability Litigation from Brien Roche Law

Fairfax Injury Lawyer Brien Roche Addresses Product Liability Litigation

Brien Roche


Product Liability Litigation-Research Sources

Product liability litigation can be complicated.  There are a number of excellent sources for research dealing with these types of cases:

  • www.recalls.gov is a site where you can search the records of each major federal product safety agency for recall information.  It also links to agency websites with additional information.
  • www.cpsc.gov is the website of the Consumer Product Safety Commission which provides information on product safety regulations and injury statistics.
  • www.saferproducts.org is a site where you can search reported product complaints.
  • www.fda.gov is the site of the FDA which provides detailed prescription drug information and adverse event reports.
  • www.epa.gov is a site that reports information on pesticides and herbicides.
  • www.nhtsa.gov is the site of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration which has research and standards on traffic and vehicle safety.
  • You may want to check the Occupational Safety and Health Administration for potential reports of industry accidents.
  • A FOIA request may well be in order to make sure that you have any government agency reports relating to the incident.  Instructions on how to file such a request are available at www.foia.gov.
  • www.astm.org is an excellent site for finding standards.
  • www.ansi.org has a searchable database.
  • Underwriters’ Laboratories maintains a website that may have pertinent information.

Product Liability Litigation-Questioning

In the course of product liability litigation the deposition of the manufacturer’s designee may be critical.  This designee needs to be someone who can testify about the design, manufacture, distribution and intended use of the product.  A fruitful line of questioning of such a witness may consist of the following:

  • Does the witness believe that a company that designs, manufactures or sells a product should be familiar with regulations and standards intended to protect the consumer?
  • Does the company in fact follow the applicable regulations or standards and if so, why so?
  • Must a responsible company follow the standards in order to prevent consumer injuries?

These can all be productive questions that may lead to certain concessions from the defense witness.

For more information on Product Liability Litigation see the other pages on this site and see the pages on Wikipedia.

for more personal injury news and views visit, Brien Roche Law

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Medical Malpractice – Surgery http://www.brienrochelaw.com/blog/medical-malpractice-surgery/ http://www.brienrochelaw.com/blog/medical-malpractice-surgery/#comments Mon, 16 May 2016 18:00:09 +0000 http://www.brienrochelaw.com/?p=9507 Medical Malpractice – Surgery from Brien Roche Law

Surgical medical malpractice to some extent is a function of how often a surgeon has performed the procedure.  One very complicated procedure is the Whipple procedure which is a pancreatic cancer operation.  It is sometimes regarded as the most difficult … Continue reading

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Medical Malpractice – Surgery from Brien Roche Law

Fairfax Injury Lawyer Brien Roche Addresses Medical Malpractice-Surgery

Brien Roche

Surgical medical malpractice to some extent is a function of how often a surgeon has performed the procedure.  One very complicated procedure is the Whipple procedure which is a pancreatic cancer operation.  It is sometimes regarded as the most difficult procedure for a surgeon.  It involves removing part of the pancreas and small intestines as well as the gall bladder and reconnecting the digestive organs.

Medical Malpractice-Surgery:Practice Makes Better

In the world of medicine there is no requirement that a surgeon must have performed a particular procedure before undertaking it with a patient.  As such it is not unheard of that surgeons with minimal experience perform high risk procedures.  This becomes especially dangerous if the procedure is being performed at a hospital that lacks experience caring for significant numbers of patients who have undergone this procedure.  In 1979 Stanford conducted a study that found that patients who underwent operations at hospitals that did more of a particular surgery had significantly lower death rates than those treated at hospitals where they were done infrequently.  A 2016 study found that the risk of complications was far higher among surgeons who performed only one thyroid removal annually than it was among that those that did 25 or more of this tricky procedure per year.

Medical Malpractice-Surgery:Minimum Requirements

Several nationally recognized medical facilities have now pledged that they will require their surgeons and their affiliated hospitals to meet minimum annual thresholds for various high risk procedures.  Under the terms of this proposal surgeons must perform at least five (5) pancreatic surgeries annually in hospitals where 20 such operations are done each year.  This provides some assurance that the patient is getting an experienced surgeon and also getting an experienced facility that knows how to deal with complications.

Medical Malpractice-Surgery:Healthcare Laws

Under the current healthcare law hospitals now may face penalties if patients need to be readmitted due to complications from procedures.  Under the prior law there was financial incentive if patients in fact were readmitted.  That is now gone.

Some specialists maintain that low volume hospitals typically lack the specialized teams to care for patients as well as they lack the state-of-the-art equipment and systems that are designed to prevent or quickly spot complications.

Medical Malpractice-Surgery:True Complication Rate

A recent CNN investigation of an extremely low volume Florida heart surgery program which was launched in 2011 found that six (6) babies died in a two (2) year period.  That was far more than what was expected.  The program closed shortly after that expose’.  US News has also recently reported in 2015 that Medicare patients who had knee replacements at the lowest volume hospitals in the country were 70% more likely to die than those whose surgery was performed at higher volume centers.  Much the same is true for hip replacements.  Although surgeons may frequently maintain that they have excellent results from their procedures the problem with that contention is that most surgeons don’t track outcomes.  As such they don’t really know if there was a good outcome.  All they know is whether or not the patient returned to them.

For more information on Medical Malpractice-Surgery see the other pages on this site and see the pages on Wikipedia.

for more personal injury news and views visit, Brien Roche Law

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Personal Injury Experts http://www.brienrochelaw.com/blog/personal-injury-experts/ http://www.brienrochelaw.com/blog/personal-injury-experts/#comments Sun, 15 May 2016 18:00:01 +0000 http://www.brienrochelaw.com/?p=9505 Personal Injury Experts from Brien Roche Law

Personal injury experts are frequently called upon to express complicated opinions on scientific issues.  The goal of the plaintiff’s attorney should be to simplify the science.  The goal also should be to make the science relevant to the case. Personal … Continue reading

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Personal Injury Experts from Brien Roche Law

Fairfax Injury Lawyer Brien Roche Addresses Personal Injury Experts

Brien Roche

Personal injury experts are frequently called upon to express complicated opinions on scientific issues.  The goal of the plaintiff’s attorney should be to simplify the science.  The goal also should be to make the science relevant to the case.

Personal Injury Experts-Malingering

For instance in many cases the defense expert will claim that the plaintiff is malingering.  One standard malingering test gives a point for responding “true” to a question on whether your eyesight has deteriorated over the years.  Many people would answer the question that way.  In fact our eyesight does tend to get worse as we age.  On that test the points are added together and as the points get higher that indicates malingering.  In order to understand that conclusion you need to understand the test.

Personal Injury Experts-To Do List

In terms of dealing with these types of defense examiners there are several things that should be done:

  • Get the experts graduation record from college or graduate school;
  • Submit a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request to any state licensing boards;
  • Verify that the experts’ professional programs were in fact accredited and in particular if the expert is a psychologist that they were approved by the American Psychological Association;
  • Search the Defense Research Institute at www.dri.org to see if the expert has made any presentations to that organization;
  • Review all decisions in lawsuits involving the expert;
  • Set up Google alerts as to the expert;
  • Go to Google Scholar at https://scholar.google.com to check out any articles cited by the defense expert;
  • Go to Google Video at www.google.com/videohp to check out any surgical procedures if in fact the expert is a surgeon
  • Go to www.trialsmith.com to get the names of any other lawyers who have researched the same expert so that you can contact those attorneys.
  • Check out the expert on www.lexisnexis.com for any licensing information or criminal charges.

In terms of trying to deal with defense testimony as far as the extent of your client’s injury a couple of tips to keep in mind are:

  • Go to www.epocrates.com to find any side effects of the medication that your client is using.
  • Use a laser thermometer to highlight your client’s injury if appropriate.  For instance a swollen knee that is two degrees different in temperature from a normal knee clearly verifies the injury.

In deposing defense experts be certain that you indicate in the Notice of Deposition that a non-testifying expert will be listening in.  This does tend to change the tenor of the deposition.

Personal Injury Experts-Cross Examination

In terms of cross-examining defense personal injury experts in something as simple as an auto accident case causing a herniated disc the questioning can go as follows:

  • An auto collision can cause a herniated disc.
  • The plaintiff had a collision.
  • The client had immediate low back pain.
  • The MRI showed a herniated disc in the lower back.
  • Are you aware of any other event that occurred right before her symptoms began that is the more likely cause of her symptoms?

When the defense expert claims that the condition should have healed within six (6) months, ask the doctor the exact day, hour and minute that the condition in fact healed.  The defense attorney will no doubt object that the doctor is being asked to speculate.  That of course is the point.

For more information on Personal Injury experts see the other pages on this site and also see the pages on Wikipedia.

for more personal injury news and views visit, Brien Roche Law

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Truck Accident Standards http://www.brienrochelaw.com/blog/truck-accident-standards/ http://www.brienrochelaw.com/blog/truck-accident-standards/#comments Sat, 14 May 2016 18:00:17 +0000 http://www.brienrochelaw.com/?p=9504 Truck Accident Standards from Brien Roche Law

Truck accident standards are in large measure derived from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations.  However those regulations are not the only source of standards.  Truck accident standards can also be found in industry standards and also in the Commercial … Continue reading

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Truck Accident Standards from Brien Roche Law

Fairfax Injury Lawyer Brien Roche Addresses Truck Accident Standards

Brien Roche

Truck accident standards are in large measure derived from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations.  However those regulations are not the only source of standards.  Truck accident standards can also be found in industry standards and also in the Commercial Drivers’ License (CDL) manual.

Truck Accident Standards-Industry Standards

Some of the basic industry standards are that truck drivers must approach every intersection assuming that cross traffic may not obey the traffic signals; drivers must not start a left turn until there is enough time for the rear of their vehicle to clear the intersection without forcing opposing drivers to slow down; drivers have a duty of extreme caution when it is raining and must reduce their speed by one-third (1/3).  Those basic rules can be a tremendous help in any truck accident case.  The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations carry the force of law.  Industry standards do not.

Truck Accident Standards-CDL Manual

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations require every state to provide a CDL manual that contains the substance of the knowledge and skills that drivers must have.  It provides the specificity that the regulations may lack.  One of the things covered in the manual is the fact that drivers need to look 12 to 15 seconds ahead in terms of their general observation.  In many circumstances the CDL manual not only for the state of the accident can be used but also the CDL manual for the state where the driver is licensed can be used.  Although typically they would be the same, there may be some slight differences.  This CDL manual becomes an excellent source of refuting the defendant’s trucking experts who state that the standard of care is determined based on the driver’s best judgment.  Another source of standards is the material that the industry uses to teach new drivers and to refresh experienced drivers in their various driving schools.  Many trucking companies also maintain what are called preventability manuals which they use after collisions to assess whether or not their drivers acted reasonably.  There are three commonly used preventability manuals that are published by the American Trucking Association, the National Safety Council and the Federal Highway Authority.  All of those can be good sources of truck accident standards.

For more information on truck accidents see the other pages on this site and see the pages on Wikipedia.

for more personal injury news and views visit, Brien Roche Law

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Legal Malpractice Privity http://www.brienrochelaw.com/blog/legal-malpractice-privity/ http://www.brienrochelaw.com/blog/legal-malpractice-privity/#comments Fri, 13 May 2016 18:00:03 +0000 http://www.brienrochelaw.com/?p=9503 Legal Malpractice Privity from Brien Roche Law

Legal malpractice privity is the core of the attorney-client relationship.  Privity means literally private.  The privity rule is that there is a degree of privacy or closeness between two parties.  Most often privity exists in a contract relationship.  The attorney-client … Continue reading

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Legal Malpractice Privity from Brien Roche Law

Fairfax Injury Lawyer Brien Roche Addresses Legal Malpractice Privity

Brien Roche

Legal malpractice privity is the core of the attorney-client relationship.  Privity means literally private.  The privity rule is that there is a degree of privacy or closeness between two parties.  Most often privity exists in a contract relationship.  The attorney-client relationship is essentially a contract relationship.  If there is no privity then that means there is no right of privacy and no closeness in terms of the relationship.  Therefore third parties to the attorney-client relationship normally cannot sue the attorney if the attorney is negligent.

This attorney-client privity issue most often arises in estate matters.  The person in privity with the attorney is the client who requests the estate planning.  The beneficiaries of that estate planning may be the heirs of the client.  If the attorney does not accomplish what the client wants the heirs may be harmed in that regard.

Legal Malpractice Privity-Estate Cases

The question that arises is whether or not that lack of privity is a bar to a legal malpractice claim.  That becomes especially important because most often the client is dead when the issue of the attorney’s negligence arises.

Some states have relaxed the strict legal malpractice privity rule.  California has adopted its own test in terms of legal malpractice privity applying several issues.  The factors to be considered in California are the extent to which the transaction was intended to benefit the particular plaintiff, the foreseeability of harm to that plaintiff, the degree of certainty that the plaintiff suffered injury, the closeness of the connection between the lawyer’s conduct and the injury and the policy of preventing future harm by attorneys.

Florida and Ohio have adopted a somewhat different rule maintaining that a claim may be asserted by the heirs only if the client’s intent, as expressed in the will, is frustrated.  In a 2016 decision from the Colorado Supreme Court that court said that where non-clients are concerned the attorney’s liability is limited to circumstances of where he has committed fraud or a malicious or tortious act including a negligent misrepresentation.  As such Colorado, like many other states, continues to apply this strict legal malpractice privity rule.  In the particular case from the Colorado Supreme Court it was alleged that the attorney had failed to accurately advise the decedent regarding the impact of holding significant assets in joint tenancy with his wife who is the mother of two of his children from the second marriage.  Upon his death the real estate passed to the stepmother and therefore the stepchildren received greater benefit than did the children from the first marriage.

Legal Malpractice Privity-Reasons for the Rule

There are a number of reasons as to why the strict privity rule should be maintained.  It does protect the attorney’s duty of loyalty, it avoids the creation of a relationship between the attorney and third parties, it avoids the creation of situations where the attorney could be required to reveal confidences to those third parties, it prevents attorneys from having liability to a potentially unlimited number of third parties and it maintains the “cardinal rule” that the intent of the decedent should be ascertained from the will itself and nothing else.

For more information on legal malpractice see the other pages on this site and also see the legal malpractice pages on Wikipedia.

for more personal injury news and views visit, Brien Roche Law

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Personal Injury – Social Media http://www.brienrochelaw.com/blog/personal-injury-social-media/ http://www.brienrochelaw.com/blog/personal-injury-social-media/#comments Sun, 01 May 2016 18:00:35 +0000 http://www.brienrochelaw.com/?p=9497 Personal Injury – Social Media from Brien Roche Law

Social media can be a game changer in regards to personal injury claims.  That can apply to both sides in a trial.  It’s not unusual that sometimes witnesses for the other side may make postings on social media that can … Continue reading

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Personal Injury – Social Media from Brien Roche Law

Fairfax Injury Lawyer Brien Roche Addresses Personal Injury-Social Media

Brien Roche

Social media can be a game changer in regards to personal injury claims.  That can apply to both sides in a trial.  It’s not unusual that sometimes witnesses for the other side may make postings on social media that can be used against them on cross-examination.  For instance if a defense medical expert posts on a Facebook page that he would never testify on behalf of a plaintiff because he believes the entire tort system should be abolished, that could well be relevant for purposes of cross-examination.

Personal Injury-Social Media:Retention

Social media content not only can be harmful based upon the content but it can also be harmful if in fact that social media is destroyed after the claim arises.  In Virginia a spoliation inference may be applicable when at the time the evidence was lost or destroyed a reasonable person in that person’s position should have foreseen that the evidence was material to a potential civil action.  As such it is important to retain all social media once the claim arises.

The attorney should not rely upon the client to preserve that social media content.  Likewise it’s important for the attorney to keep in mind that some people are literally addicted to social media.  Any cautions that may be made by the attorney to cease using social media may be disregarded.

Personal Injury-Social Media: The Public Domain

The content of social media generally is discoverable because it is out in the public domain.  There is no right to privacy or privilege that protects it from disclosure.  Even content that is maintained as private may be subject to disclosure.

Attempts at the discovery of social media from opposing parties consisting of broad requests for all social media content are overly broad.  Likewise requests for the production of all social media content using an internal archive feature may be overly broad.  The request for social media content must be narrowly tailored and not constitute a fishing expedition.

In order to request all of the client’s social media content there must be some factual predicate for doing so.  That is, there must be a showing based upon facts already in the record that there is a reason to infer that additional discoverable information exists in the non-public social media account.  For instance information contained in the publicly available portion of a user’s profile may form the basis for further discovery.  As such the starting point in terms of social media discovery may be informal discovery.  That informal discovery should consist of searching all publicly available information for that person.  This can be done through Google, Facebook, Instagram and the other social media pages.  After exhausting all publicly available information then formal discovery tools may be appropriate.

Personal Injury-Social Media Discovery

Some things that typically cannot be obtained through discovery are:

  • Login credentials.
  • Direct subpoenas to the social media services.  The Stored Communication Act found in 18 U.S.C. § 2701 forbids providers “from disclosing the contents of an account to any nongovernmental entity pursuant to a subpoena or court order.

In the case of James v. Edwards, 85 Va. Cir. 139 (2012) the plaintiff alleged severe injuries after an auto crash.  His Facebook page contained a photograph of him binge drinking and attending parties.  Defense counsel moved to compel his Facebook user name and password along with complete copies of the contents of the Facebook account.  Although the court refused to compel disclosure of user name and password it did permit the defendant to access the plaintiff’s Facebook account under supervision of plaintiff’s counsel.

Settling simply for screen shots of social media content typically should not be acceptable.  An extensive amount of content is missed with simple screen shots and in addition there is no meta data that is provided.

Likewise resorting to “internal archive functions” may not always be adequate.  In particular a forensic collection tool would reveal not only what was posted but would reveal precisely when it was posted and from where it was posted.  That type of information may be especially relevant if the postings occurred moments after a collision and at the site of the collision.

Personal Injury-Social Media: More Information

For more information in regards to Personal Injury claims see the other pages on this site.  For more information on social media see the pages on Wikipedia.

for more personal injury news and views visit, Brien Roche Law

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Meeting Your Personal Injury Lawyer http://www.brienrochelaw.com/blog/meeting-your-personal-injury-lawyer/ http://www.brienrochelaw.com/blog/meeting-your-personal-injury-lawyer/#comments Sat, 30 Apr 2016 18:00:32 +0000 http://www.brienrochelaw.com/?p=9496 Meeting Your Personal Injury Lawyer from Brien Roche Law

Potential clients may be nervous about meeting a personal injury lawyer for the first time.  Many people have never met a lawyer in a business context before.  Personal injury attorneys do not necessarily enjoy the best of reputations. Injury Lawyer-The … Continue reading

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Meeting Your Personal Injury Lawyer from Brien Roche Law

Fairfax Injury Lawyer Brien Roche Addresses Meeting With Your Injury Lawyer

Brien Roche

Potential clients may be nervous about meeting a personal injury lawyer for the first time.  Many people have never met a lawyer in a business context before.  Personal injury attorneys do not necessarily enjoy the best of reputations.

Injury Lawyer-The Initial Meeting

In terms of preparing for your first meeting with your personal injury lawyer it’s probably worthwhile to do some homework.  Checking out the attorney online may give you some idea at least as to how well established the attorney is.  One indicator in that regard is whether or not the lawyer has an actual physical office.  The absence of a physical office may suggest that the attorney is not well established.

If your contact with the injury lawyer is through a representative who tries to get you to sign a Retainer Agreement, that may well be a clue that the attorney is not someone that you want to deal with.  You want to deal directly with the attorney.

In terms of the first appointment with the attorney there are several things that you need to bring with you:

  • Everything that relates to the incident.
  • Your own auto insurance policy if in fact this is an automobile collision.
  • Any and all information you have about the other driver and/or that driver’s insurance carrier.
  • A complete description of the incident.
  • The police report.
  • Any information card that you received from the police at the scene.
  • Any bills or records relating to any healthcare treatment that you’ve received subsequent to the injury.
  • Any and all health insurance coverage that you have.  You need to be aware that under most health insurance policies that the health insurance carrier has a right to subrogate/recover any monies that they have paid out on your behalf.  There may be some deducts from that.
  • Any and all correspondence that you’ve had with the other driver’s insurance carrier.
  • Any information that you have about any other injuries that may in any way be related to this injury.
  • Any and all property damage estimates.
  • Names and phone numbers of all witnesses.
  • All pictures of the vehicle and of the scene.
  • Any receipts for towing or storage of the vehicle.

The reason that your insurance information is important is because your auto insurance coverage may provide coverage for you.  In particular if the other driver is uninsured then your uninsured motorist coverage may be your only source of recovery.  Likewise if you have medical payments coverage, that may provide coverage for you up to the limits of that medical payments coverage.  That type of coverage typically will reimburse you for any treatment that your insurance company deems to be reasonable and necessary.

Injury Lawyer-Ask Questions

Finally if there are any questions that you think of before the meeting with the attorney, be certain to write those down so that you don’t forget to ask them during the course of the meeting.   A common question that is asked is “What is my case worth?”.  Most attorneys will simply tell you that they don’t know.  Evaluating a personal injury case is something that is going to be a product of the extent of your medical treatment, the extent of any lost time from work, the extent of your pain and suffering and the overall duration of the injury.  Those are all factors that any realistic attorney is going to have to disclose to you and will not be able to give you a reliable estimate as to what your case is worth until you’ve made either a full recovery or achieve what is called “maximum medical improvement” i.e., you’ve gotten as well as you’re going to get.

For more information on Personal Injury matters see the other pages on this site and also see the pages on Wikipedia.

 

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Tractor Trailer Crashes http://www.brienrochelaw.com/blog/tractor-trailer-crashes/ http://www.brienrochelaw.com/blog/tractor-trailer-crashes/#comments Fri, 29 Apr 2016 18:00:43 +0000 http://www.brienrochelaw.com/?p=9494 Tractor Trailer Crashes from Brien Roche Law

Tractor trailer crashes account for approximately 500,000 vehicles accidents in the United States each year.  Drivers of these large trucks are ten times more likely to be the cause of a car crash than any other factor.  Those other potential … Continue reading

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Tractor Trailer Crashes from Brien Roche Law

Fairfax Injury Lawyer Brien Roche Addresses Tractor Trailer Crashes

Brien Roche

    Tractor trailer crashes account for approximately 500,000 vehicles accidents in the United States each year.  Drivers of these large trucks are ten times more likely to be the cause of a car crash than any other factor.  Those other potential factors may be such things as weather, road conditions or vehicle performance according to the U.S. Department of Transportation.

    These massive vehicles can weigh up to 40 times more than your typical car.  When these trucks are fully loaded with approximately 80,000 pounds and traveling at 60 miles per hour they can demolish anything in their path.

    Tractor Trailer Crashes-Trooper Killed

    An Illinois state trooper on March 28, 2013 was hit by a tractor trailer.  He was parked on the left shoulder of Interstate 294.  The driver of a United Van Lines truck pulling a trailer loaded with household goods came at him in the left lane.  That driver had already worked a 12 hour shift loading that huge truck.  He then drove for another 4 hours.  He fell asleep at the wheel.  His truck went off the road crashing into the trooper’s vehicle.  The trooper was engulfed in flames.  He died of those burn injuries.  The 26 year-old truck driver was criminally charged.  The moving company was fined for breaking federal law prohibiting a driver to be on duty for more than 14 hours without getting rest.  The suit that was eventually filed against United Van Lines settled for over $10 Million.

    There are an estimated 2 million tractor trailers on the road nationwide.  The primary cause of tractor trailer crashes are:

    1. The use of drugs which affect a driver’s reaction time account for approximately 26% of tractor trailer crashes.
    2. Speeding or traveling too fast account for approximately 23%.
    3. Being lost or driving in unfamiliar areas accounts for approximately 22% of crashes.
    4. Use of over-the-counter drugs contributes to 18% of crashes.
    5. Failure to check blind spots and carefully observe all sides of the truck before making a turn account for 14% of crashes.
    6. Fatigue accounts for 13% of crashes.
    7. Failing to use a turn signal or making some other illegal maneuver accounts for about 9% of crashes.
    8. Driver inattention accounts for approximately 8% of the crashes.
    9. Poor evasive action accounts for approximately 7% of the crashes.
    10. Aggressive driving accounts for approximately 7% of crashes.

    One of the main difficulties in driving a large truck is the fact that these trucks tend to have large blind spots.  Drivers should avoid these blind spots at the rear of the truck and the side of the truck.  Likewise the connecting point between the truck and its trailer may well be a blind spot.  If you can’t see the driver in the driver’s side mirrors then that means the driver can’t see you and you may want to get out of that particular location on the roadway.

    Tractor Trailer Crashes-Tips

    Some other tips in terms of avoiding tractor trailer crashes are:

    • If you plan on passing a tractor trailer make sure you use your turn signal and make sure that you’ve given the driver sufficient warning so that he is on alert.
    • Keep a safe distance.
    • The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration recommends a 4 second gap.  You can calculate this gap by starting to count when you see the rear of the truck ahead of you pass a fixed object.  If the road conditions are dangerous then that gap needs to be increased.

    For more information about truck accidents see the other pages on this site and also see the pages on Wikipedia.

    for more personal injury news and views visit, Brien Roche Law

    ]]> http://www.brienrochelaw.com/blog/tractor-trailer-crashes/feed/ 0 Personal Injury-Bankruptcy http://www.brienrochelaw.com/blog/personal-injury-bankruptcy-2/ http://www.brienrochelaw.com/blog/personal-injury-bankruptcy-2/#comments Thu, 28 Apr 2016 18:00:23 +0000 http://www.brienrochelaw.com/?p=9493 Personal Injury-Bankruptcy from Brien Roche Law

    Personal Injury-Bankruptcy:  Two terms that most people would think have nothing to do with each other.  In fact they do.  An injured party who has filed bankruptcy may not own that injury claim.  If that injured party has innocently or … Continue reading

    for more personal injury news and views visit, Brien Roche Law

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    Personal Injury-Bankruptcy from Brien Roche Law

    Fairfax Injury Lawyer Brien Roche Addresses Personal Injury-Bankruptcy

    Brien Roche

    Personal Injury-Bankruptcy:  Two terms that most people would think have nothing to do with each other.  In fact they do.  An injured party who has filed bankruptcy may not own that injury claim.  If that injured party has innocently or otherwise failed to report that injury claim on the bankruptcy filing then there may be considerable complications.

    Personal Injury-Bankruptcy:Innocent Non Disclosure

    As part of any bankruptcy filing it is necessary to disclose all property interests.  Property interests include potential claims.  Even personal injury claims.  That claim in most instances is the property of the estate if it arises before the bankruptcy.  In the case of a Chapter 13 filing, claims that arise after the bankruptcy filing are also part of the bankruptcy estate.  As such Chapter 13 filings are especially dangerous.

    The injured party’s oversight in failing to report the claim is not an excuse.  In fact it may be a bar to that party even pursuing the claim.  In the case of Kimberlin v. Dollar General Corp., 520 Fed. Appx. 312 (6th Cir. 2013) a debtor was fired shortly before making her final payment to the Chapter 13 trustee.  She did not amend her schedule so as to reflect a potential claim for unlawful termination.  After she received her discharge she filed suit against the former employer alleging unlawful termination.  The court held that the debtor was barred from pursuing that claim because if she had notified the court of the claim prior to the discharge then the bankruptcy court could have modified her plan in order to increase the payout to the creditors.

    In regards to bankruptcy matters there also exists the issue of standing.  That is, your client may lack standing to file a suit because that claim was not properly scheduled and therefore it had not been abandoned back to the debtor by the trustee.  Only the Chapter 7 trustee has standing to pursue a claim but if the claim was not properly scheduled and therefore the trustee is unaware of it, no proper lawsuit is filed within the statute of limitations and therefore whatever claim was filed by the debtor may not stop the statute of limitations from running.

    In contrast with a Chapter 7 case, there is no risk for Plaintiff’s counsel filing suit for a Chapter 13 debtor.  Chapter 13 debtors retain standing to pursue their own claims.

    Personal Injury-Bankruptcy:Chapter 13

    As soon as a Chapter 13 debtor does file a separate suit in pursuit of a claim it then becomes necessary to determine whether or not the proper exemptions have been asserted.  To do that the debtor should amend his schedule to fully disclose the claim, correctly evaluate it and then exempt the highest allowable value.  Otherwise the trustee may retain an interest in the claim.  In addition there may be medical providers who have a secured claim against any recovery in the form of a lien.

    There are additional personal injury-bankruptcy considerations to be kept in mind in regards to plaintiffs that are also Chapter 13 debtors.  The rule to keep in mind is that clients that either are now or have been in bankruptcy need to be carefully counseled as to what their rights are in regards to a personal injury claim.

    Personal Injury-Bankruptcy: More Information

    For more information about personal injury matters, see the other pages on this site.

    For more information on bankruptcy, see the pages on Wikipedia.

    for more personal injury news and views visit, Brien Roche Law

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