Traumatic Brain Injury FAQ

Here are some of the most frequently asked questions about Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI). The answers to some of these questions might help you better understand what is happening to you or a loved one following a car accident that resulted in a TBI.
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What is a traumatic brain injury?

When your head is hit forcefully, for any reason, there’s a potential for a brain injury. The brain is much more fragile than we think. A blow to the head can cause physical damage to the brain that is visible in the behavioral, emotional, and psychological changes that occur after the injury.

What causes TBI?

Motor vehicle accidents account for 17.3% of all TBI cases in the United States. That is topped only by “falls,” at 35.2% of all cases. Assaults account for 11%, and 21% of TBI cases are from unknown circumstances. Another 16.5% of people were struck by or struck against something else and suffered a brain injury. As you can see, auto accidents account for a significant number of these cases. Someone who is the victim of a negligent driver didn’t injure themselves. They were literally hit by another person’s vehicle and in turn suffered an injury that was in no way their fault.

How much does TBI cost society?

The cost of traumatic brain injuries on the economy is outrageous. In 2010 alone, TBI cost the United States approximately $76.5 billion. That includes the outrageously high medical bills of caring for someone who suffers this type of injury and the loss of work that they’re unable to do now that they’re injured. It’s a cost that’s too high, but the human toll a brain injury takes is far more depressing.

What are the effects of a TBI?

The brain is a physical organ just like the heart. It can become physically damaged and require surgery to repair it, just like any other organ. The tragic part of this is that the brain regulates emotions, behavior, and other intangible aspects of who a person is, right down to their core. Therefore when someone suffers from a brain injury, they might experience a drastic change in personality or feel differently emotionally (or be numb to emotions in general, depending on the area of their injury). Physical effects can include loss of muscle control, coordination difficulty, and speech problems.

What does a TBI patient have to endure?

Someone who has a severe traumatic brain injury is likely going to require extensive, long-term medical care. Their life may never be “normal” again. Permanent disability means the person will not be able to take care of themselves financially because they can’t work. They may have trouble communicating and expressing themselves to their family, or they may suffer from behavioral changes that get them in trouble later in life. It’s tragic all around.

It is only the financial difficulties that a TBI lawyer might be able to help with. Your TBI attorney can make sure that the people who hurt you or your loved one will accept responsibility for what they did, so that you or your loved one can get the financial help you need to go on with life. A TBI lawyer can also get you compensation for your pain and suffering.

What are long-term effects of TBI?

A mild brain injury might result in short-term effects, but a severe injury will likely leave a victim with lifetime consequences. There might be problems with memory, problems with thought patterns, periods of confusion, times when thinking is slowed, and much more. And many people who suffer from these injuries often have personality changes that literally makes them seem like totally different people. A very talkative, outgoing person might suddenly be withdrawn from loved ones, and it can be very painful to see the changes.

Who can help?

Your doctor, therapist, and other medical professionals, as well as loving family and friends are the primary source of comfort while you cope with a TBI. The person who can help you get compensation to pay for all of these resources is a TBI attorney who specializes in holding people responsible for causing these types of injuries.

If you’ve been harmed in a way that resulted in traumatic brain injury, you can always contact Lalezary Law Firm and get the help you need. We don’t get paid until you’ve received your compensation. For a free consultation, call us today at (888) 778-8888.

What It's Like to Have a Brain Injury

The results of an accident can last a lifetime. A traumatic brain injury (TBI) drastically changes a person in many ways and deeply impacts their lifestyle and relationships. When you suffer a TBI, recovery isn’t just about immediate improvement. TBI recovery is about relearning your life and adjusting everything to accommodate the side effects of such an injury.
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What Are the Symptoms of TBI?

Depending on which region of the brain was injured, both short and long-term symptoms will vary. However, many common results of a TBI include headaches and dizziness, emotional imbalances, excessive fatigue, irritability, depression, and more.

It’s extremely stressful for someone to recover from a TBI because they simply don’t just “get better.” They don’t just wake up one morning and suddenly feel recovered. Even after they’re discharged from the hospital, a TBI patient can have years of brain injury recovery ahead that will require changes across every facet of their lives.

Social Impacts

After a traumatic brain injury, many people who were once social can’t handle lots of noise, fast conversations or crowds. Their brains don’t process sensory input the same way anymore, and it’s easy for them to get overwhelmed.

Emotional flooding is a typical response exhibited by TBI patients. As the brain is healing, there are neurocognitive differences that can cause a person’s emotions to radically shift seemingly without warning. The psychological effects of a traumatic brain injury can lead to a rush of intense emotions that can manifest as an angry outburst, uncontrollable crying or even a panic attack.

People with traumatic brain injuries must take things slowly, be careful not to overstimulate themselves and be surrounded by people who understand that their reactions may not always make sense and assure them that it’s okay. Working with a neurologist and psychiatrist can help patients develop new coping skills that will aid them throughout recovery.

Legal Options for People with Traumatic Brain Injuries

Due to the emotional damage, medical costs and other fees incurred as a result of an accident, talking to a traumatic brain injury attorney is a good idea. A good traumatic brain injury lawyer can help you determine exactly what happened, who’s at fault and how much compensation you deserve.

A traumatic brain injury attorney would be classified as a personal injury lawyer. Speaking with a legal professional as soon as possible is the best way to guarantee your case can be taken to court. Every state has its own statute of limitations, which is the allotted amount of time that can pass between an accident and filing a lawsuit. If you surpass this statute, you won’t be eligible to sue any responsible parties for your injury and damages sustained.

How to Find a Good Traumatic Brain Injury Lawyer

Although you want to file a claim and address your injury as soon as possible, it’s important to speak to several local lawyers and ask them how they’d handle the case. You can get several quotes for their fees, see how they compare, and ask them questions pertaining to your case, information regarding it and their general process.

Recovery is a Day at a Time

After a brain injury, patients need to reduce the stress in their lives and downsize their to-do list. Although they may be up and active, adjustment and recovery take time. It’s important to bring in others who can help make everyday life more manageable. Relying on loved ones, caretakers and a respected team of professionals will help eliminate any unnecessary additional difficulties and allow patients to heal as quickly and smoothly as possible.

Auto Accidents and Brain Injuries

A traumatic brain injury is any type of damage to the brain that occurs from an external force that is great enough to induce bruising, bleeding, inflammation, or swelling, not from other internal illnesses, neurodegenerative diseases, or congenital malformations from birth defects. Although a traumatic brain injury can be caused by a blow to the head or a bad fall, one of the most common ways that someone can develop the condition is from an automobile accident. Because of this, it is important that all people understand how an automobile accident can cause a traumatic brain injury, the symptoms of the condition, the seriousness of a brain injury, and when to seek legal help from a California brain injury attorney.
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How an Automobile Accident Causes a Traumatic Brain Injury

There are two main ways that an automobile accident can cause a traumatic brain injury. Side-impact accidents are one of them. The affected person receives a direct blow to the head from the metal parts, glass, or other objects from the car.

The second way is front or rear impacts that cause the affected person to hit their head on the steering wheel. This usually happens if there is no airbag built in. However, on some occasions, even if there is an air bag present, it may not deploy fast enough to cushion the blow. This can lead to the head being thrashed back and forth so forcefully that the brain hits the inside of the skull.

The Symptoms of a Traumatic Brain Injury

The most obvious sign of a traumatic brain injury is a loss of consciousness. Anyone who experiences this must have a family member or friend contact a California brain injury attorney on their behalf. Brain injuries don’t always have dramatic results, however; sometimes a brain injury victim may remain completely conscious. It just depends on how severe the impact was and if they received any other types of injuries.

Next, they will experience pain in the affected region of the head that can vary in intensity from a dull ache to a serious migraine that won’t go away, even when pain medication is taken. Confusion and weakness are also common. Some people may feel drowsy. These symptoms are usually only temporary, but they can develop into symptoms that have a devastating, long-term impact on a person’s life, such as memory impairment, loss of muscle control, and depression.

The Seriousness of a Traumatic Brain Injury

Some types of traumatic brain injuries can lead to death if they go untreated. This generally occurs when the force of the impact from a car accident causes blood vessels to burst in the brain, which leads to a pool of blood called a “hematoma” forming. The hematoma places added pressure against the brain, which can cause even further damage to the delicate tissue.

When to Seek Legal Help from a Brain Injury Lawyer in Los Angeles

Anyone who has suffered a brain injury in a Los Angeles car accident should seek legal help from one of our experienced attorneys right away. The longer that someone waits, the harder it is for a brain injury lawyer in Los Angeles to gather all of the information that is needed to prove the negligence of the at-fault driver. You deserve maximum compensation for your losses, so don’t delay. Call us today at (888) 778-8888 for immediate legal assistance.

Are Concussions Dangerous?

Many people think that they will never get a concussion because of the common assumption that this type of injury mainly occurs to those who play high-impact sports. But that is far from the truth. In reality, anyone of any age or occupation can get a concussion from a car or workplace accident, a bad fall, or being struck in the head with an object. This can result in serious health problems. Because of this, it is important that everyone understands what a concussion is, what symptoms this type of injury can cause, how dangerous it can be if it goes untreated, and when to hire a concussion attorney.

What is a Concussion?

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A concussion is an injury to the brain that results in inflammation, swelling, and bruising. This might not seem possible because the brain is protected by a thick skull and a layer of liquid. But if a person’s head is hit hard enough, or jostled violently, the brain can hit the inside of the skull and sustain damage.

What Are the Symptoms of a Concussion?

The symptoms of a concussion often begin immediately after the injury. That is why it is critical to contact a concussion attorney right away. Most people who have had this type of head trauma report that they suddenly “see stars,” which is essentially a flash of light behind the eyes. The flash of light only happens for a split second though. Then, depending on the force of the impact that was received, a person may become unconscious.

It is important to mention that some people stay completely awake when it happens to them though. Afterwards, it is common for people to become nauseated or vomit. But the most important telltale sign to look out for is the pupils being two different sizes. One will be very small. And the other will be disproportionately larger. Also, the entire head will hurt very badly, and the person will feel weak and confused.

How Dangerous is a Concussion?

The symptoms of a concussion don’t disappear overnight. They can last for months or years, especially if the force of the impact was severe. A person can develop long-term memory problems, confusion, weakness, and migraines. If they have previously had one or more concussions, any new head trauma can result in a hematoma, which is a pool of blood inside the skull that is life-threatening. The hematoma puts added pressure against the brain because the narrow confines of the skull don’t allow for much leeway. This is dangerous because it could result in sudden death if the pressure isn’t relieved in time. Sometimes, a person doesn’t have to have a previous concussion for a hematoma to occur though, especially if they are a small child. A severe blow to the head in an infant or toddler could potentially kill them on impact because their skull is still soft, and it hasn’t fully developed yet.

When is it Time to Hire a Concussion Lawyer?

Any time that a concussion occurs because of the careless actions or misconduct of another person or company, it is best to consult with a brain injury lawyer from our law firm. We can evaluate your case with the utmost care and concern to ensure that you get the treatment and financial compensation that you need to cover your medical and household expenses as quickly as possible, while ensuring that those who caused the injury are held responsible for their actions. Therefore if you or someone you love gets a concussion, don’t wait. Call us right away at (888) 778-8888 to make an appointment.

The Effects Of Brain Damage

A traumatic brain injury (TBI) can result from a severe auto accident. In terms of devastation, it is one of the worst injuries a person can suffer. Aside from the devastating physical damage done to the brain itself, there are the resulting changes in behavior, cognition, and emotional processing that so often affects the victim in a long-term or even permanent way. This blog provides a brief overview of the effects of brain damage.
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Physical Effects

The brain is an organ just like any other organ in the body, and it can sustain real physical damage just like any other organ. When someone is in a serious auto accident, the physical effects to the brain can range from mild to severe. A traumatic brain injury can have very real and physical consequences. A person might experience changes in balance that cause frequent falls or difficulty with mobility. Coordination, touch, and smell might be altered after an accident. Muscle control might also be affected.

As you can see, a brain injury can be detrimental to the physical comfort of a victim, and they might require weeks, months, or years of physical therapy to recover. And some of those victims never recover and must live with the changes as best as they can. Because of this, a brain injury lawyer needs to be called immediately if a serious TBI is present after an auto accident. Medical procedures can be expensive and the ability to work may be lost forever. Only a brain injury attorney can help you recover compensation for medical bills and other damages.

Mental Effects

The mental effects of a brain injury can be just as devastating as the physical ones. Many people notice a distinct change in both behavior and cognition, and some of those changes are long-term. In severe cases, the changes may be permanent, although they may be mitigated by psychotherapy and other forms of counseling. Reaching out to other survivors who struggle with TBI might also be helpful.

Personality changes might be evident from the beginning, as many family members and friends might notice that an outgoing person is now withdrawn and quiet, a quiet person is now loud and rude, or an active person now seems lethargic. These changes are NOT unusual following a brain injury, but they do need to be investigated by therapists who can help.

A brain injury attorney can help provide the type of compensation someone with a permanent brain injury will need to afford their treatments for such personality changes. Your brain injury lawyer can help you, or someone you love, hold the perpetrator of the injury responsible for the consequences. If it was an auto accident, that means showing the negligent party what their actions have done to impact the injured party and making sure that they pay for damages, even if it means a large sum.

Emotional Effects

The emotional effects of a brain injury can really lower the victim’s quality of life. Someone who has a traumatic injury to the brain will often be depressed (this is true of half of TBI victims in the first year following their accident). Life has changed for the victim, and it’s not in a good way. Not only have they suffered a brain injury, but the coping skills they need to comprehend the damage is unfortunately damaged.

It’s the brain that helps people cope with emotionally devastating events, and TBI takes that person’s capacity to manage emotions away from them. That doesn’t mean that with therapy, they can’t improve drastically and over time come to grips with what has happened. There is always hope for someone who has ANY kind of injury, even one as tragic as TBI.

Call Our Law Offices

Our experienced brain injury lawyers have seen the effects of TBI on our clients as they struggle to cope with the injustice life has dealt them. And we’ve passionately represented them in lawsuits that helped them get the compensation they needed to live a more normal life. People with brain injuries need medical treatment on several different fronts, and we are the professionals who represent them so that they can afford this type of expensive treatment. Many people with brain injury also can’t work anymore, and it’s our job to recover their lost wages AND make sure that they are compensated for their unfair pain and suffering.

Whether you have suffered a minor or major traumatic brain injury in an accident, we can help you obtain maximum compensation for your losses—if we don’t win, you don’t pay, guaranteed. Call (888) 778-8888 for immediate legal assistance.

Can Undocumented Immigrants File Accident Claims?

Traversing the legal landscape can be difficult for the average person. It is even more so for those who live as undocumented immigrants. These immigrants typically shy away from vindicating their legal rights out of fear or apprehensiveness. However, this does not have to be the case. People in undocumented status mostly have the same opportunities as any citizen when it comes to taking legal action. For example, undocumented immigrants who are injured in a car accident have the right to sue the other party just like anyone else. Undocumented people in California should not think twice about asserting their legal rights to seek compensation for accident related injuries.
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Erasing Fear: AB 2159 and Section 351.2

Previously, immigrants had a justified fear when participating in a lawsuit. Under former case law a person’s immigration status was an admissible piece of evidence in a personal injury case. A 1986 case decided by the California Court of Appeals, Rodriguez v. Kline, held that an undocumented plaintiff did not have the right to recover future lost wages based on their wages in the U.S. Rather, these plaintiffs could only be compensated at the applicable pay rate in their country of origin. The effect of this case was to reduce or eliminate a recovery for the plaintiff. It also brought up the plaintiff’s immigration status in a public forum which put them at risk for removal proceedings.

Fortunately, Rodriguez v. Kline was nullified by a restructuring of the California Evidence Code. In 2016, the governor signed AB 2159 into law. This law, which went into effect at the beginning of 2017, excludes evidence of a person’s immigration status in a civil case. Due to this, immigrants without documentation no longer have to worry about exposing their immigration status when filing a lawsuit. Your accident attorney will ensure that your status is not divulged in accordance with the law.

Immigration Status Is Not Relevant In An Injury Claim

Over the years many unscrupulous defendants have tried to use a person’s undocumented status to shield liability. In the 2003 case, Hernandez v. Paicius, the court found that the plaintiff’s undocumented status was not relevant to the outcome of the personal injury claim. For years, the Hernandez case stood for the proposition that immigration status is generally inadmissible in a civil case. Several other California court decisions support this concept and grant undocumented people the same rights as other litigants.

Filing A Lawsuit Does Not Equal Deportation

Many undocumented immigrants believe that filing a lawsuit will alert immigration officials. This is not true. The current state of law in California means that a person’s immigration status will not be discussed in court. Furthermore, it is illegal for the other party (or their accident attorney) to dissuade an immigrant from filing suit by threatening to inform DHS officials. The fear of deportation is unfounded.

Car Accident Injuries Deserve Compensation

Undocumented immigrants live, work and participate in society just like everyone else. Therefore, they deserve the same amount of redress for injuries suffered in car accidents. Most auto accidents cause serious injuries that can affect your life for years to come. Thus, as an undocumented immigrant, it is important to seek a sufficient amount of compensation to help you resume your life as normally as possible. An accident lawyer can help you with the process to make sure all of your rights are protected.

If you have further questions about filing a car accident lawsuit talk to an accident lawyer as soon as possible. An experienced accident attorney will evaluate your claim and help you determine if you have a potential recovery. Personal injury lawsuits in California must be filed within three years of the incident. Don’t let time slip away. It is important to begin working on your case right away to have the best chance at a successful outcome.

What Should I Do After a Motorcycle Accident?

For a motorcycle rider, few things are as freeing as hitting the open road. Motorcycles provide a unique experience that allows you to connect to the sights, sounds and scents of the world around you. However, this exposure to the outside world is also what makes motorcycles more dangerous. Even if you’re aware of the dangers, you likely assume that an accident won’t happen to you. Maybe you think you’re too good a driver, or perhaps you simply aren’t the type to plan for the worst. Either way, it’s a good idea to be aware of what you should do in case an accident occurs.
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On the Scene: The Immediate Steps Following an Accident

Get Out of the Road

The first and most crucial step after an accident is making sure you’re safe. If you can move, do what you can to get out of the road. If possible, move your motorcycle out of the way as well. If you can’t move, do what you can to alert people in the area so someone can help divert oncoming traffic until help arrives.

Call for Help

Even if you don’t feel any pain or discomfort, it’s smart idea to call an ambulance. You might be suffering from internal injuries, and you don’t want to pass out later when you’re home alone, and there’s no one around to help you. Getting checked out right away will also ensure you have the proper documentation for a motorcycle accident attorney if you choose to pursue a case. It’s also important to speak with the police, especially if you think more than $500 worth of damage has been done. A police report can help your motorcycle accident lawyer win your case, so be sure not to skip this step.

Get Information

If you’re physically capable, your next step should be to speak to the other drivers who were involved in the crash. Get names, phone numbers, license numbers, plate numbers, insurance information and vehicle descriptions. If witnesses are hanging around, ask for their contact information as well. It’s difficult to track down an unknown person after the fact, so don’t be shy about asking while you have the chance. Most people will have no problem being a witness and will gladly speak to your motorcycle accident attorney if necessary.

Don’t Admit Anything

If you fear the accident might have been your fault, stay quiet. It’s good to own up to our mistakes, but after an accident, you might be dazed, confused and unclear about what actually happened. You could possibly admit to something that wasn’t your fault at all, and if that goes on record, your case might go out the window. If you are at fault, you and your motorcycle accident lawyer can discuss your options at a later time.

The Aftermath: When to Contact a Motorcycle Lawyer in Los Angeles

Call the Insurance Company

As soon as you finish getting checked out at the hospital, you should call your insurance company to report the accident. Have all of the information you gathered ready, including the police report and the names of the officers you spoke with at the scene.

Call a Motorcycle Accident Lawyer in Los Angeles

At this point, the insurance company will usually try to figure out who is at fault for the accident. It’s a good idea to contact a lawyer at this time. Insurance companies will sometimes assume that the motorcycle driver is at fault and raise the insurance rates. If you’ve suffered injuries as a result of the accident, you may be entitled to damages, and you don’t want to miss out on that much-needed money. A lawyer can assess your situation and let you know if you have a case, but if you wait too long, this will become more difficult.

Don’t Sign or Accept Anything

It’s possible that you might be approached with an offer in the weeks following your accident. Maybe the other driver wants to avoid a legal hassle by paying you directly. While accepting this cash might be tempting, be aware that in doing so, you’ll be ruining your chances of taking this case to court in the future. In certain circumstances, that can be devastating. For example, what if what you thought was a minor injury turns out to have major health consequences six months from now? Don’t accept or sign anything without speaking to your lawyer beforehand.

If you’re ready to get the help you need after a crash, contact Lalezary Law Firm today. Within our team, you’ll find the best motorcycle accident lawyer in Los Angeles for your case. We’re ready to assist you in any way we can, so please give us a call now.

What to Do in a Car Accident

Being involved in an auto accident is a very alarming and confusing situation, so it’s not surprising that many people feel flustered in the midst of that kind of situation. By learning the best actions to take immediately after the accident and in the weeks following the incident, you can be better prepared for such a trial. While you’ll still feel nervously excited in the situation, being armed with this knowledge can help you make the best decisions for your circumstances.
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Assess the Scene

Assuming you aren’t seriously injured, you should assess the scene of the accident as much as possible. This means getting contact information from the other drivers involved in the wreck, as well as getting the names and phone numbers of witnesses to the accident. This will help your car accident lawyer, if the incident results in legal action.

Additionally, try to document the scene. Start by making notes about what you recall about the accident, while the events are still fresh in your mind. If you have a cell phone that’s equipped with a camera, you should also take pictures of the accident scene, as these may be helpful on obtaining a fair car accident settlement. Take various photos of any property damage, as well as of the scene in general.

Seek Medical Attention

Even if you don’t feel injured, you should still seek medical attention for a couple of reasons. First, there may be internal injuries that may not be present, but have not yet caused you to experience any symptoms. For instance, neck or back injuries may take time to develop, or can worsen over time. Traumatic brain injuries (TBI) are also common in auto accidents, but they can take days or weeks to develop. A medical exam may catch these injuries early, making treatment less invasive and more successful.

Another reason it’s wise to seek medical attention after a wreck is because failing to do so can adversely affect a car accident settlement. Seeking medical treatment shows the insurance company and the civil court that you took action to limit the scope of your injuries. Without treatment, your injuries could worsen, which would make you partially liable for the damages. This means the sum the court awards in your case will be adjusted (decreased) accordingly. In some instances, you may not receive any settlement at all.

Consult a Car Accident Attorney

Even while you’re receiving medical treatment, you may be contacted by an insurance adjuster, who is working for the other driver’s insurance company. Their goal is to settle the case as quickly as possible and for as little money as possible. For this reason, they will attempt to get you to sign off on a settlement offer, before the full extent of your injuries is known. While this is a quick way to get paid, it will likely be less than you deserve to cover all damages caused by the accident.

This is why you should wait to consult a car accident attorney, before considering any settlement. In addition to the medical bills you’re currently incurring, there are many damages for which you may be entitled to compensation. Your car accident lawyer may also try to get you money to cover the costs of damages to your car or other property and the time you have missed from work, due to receiving treatment for your injuries.

Depending on the severity of your injuries, you may require ongoing treatment or long-term physical therapy. If the accident caused a permanent disability, you may even be eligible to receive damages to cover the income that you’re no longer capable of earning. In any case, your attorney will likely also seek money to compensate you for pain and suffering.

After an accident, money will likely be a concern, but that’s no reason to try to handle the complexities of a personal injury case by yourself. An initial consultation with an experienced attorney is free and will give you a good assessment of your case. The attorney can’t guarantee a settlement, but he can tell you what your best options are, based on his experience and the facts of your case. If you choose to hire the attorney, he will work on a contingency, which means you won’t have to pay his fees up front. Instead, the attorney will deduct his fee as a percentage of the settlement. This makes it easier for the client, who is likely already struggling with finances, due to the burdens caused by the accident.

By following these steps after an auto accident, you can better protect yourself. Ensuring your wellbeing in these circumstances means taking care of your financial situation, as well as looking after your health. By enlisting the help of both a professional caregiver and legal advocate, you can trust that interests are being protected.

How Long Do Personal Injury Claims Take to Settle?

One of the most frustrating and difficult aspects of any personal injury claim process is waiting to receive the compensation you need to move on with your life. After your accident, you are left with medical expenses, an inability to return to work, and a painful recovery process. While you certainly want to settle your claim as quickly as possible, your personal injury attorney will encourage you to avoid accepting the first settlement offer you receive from the insurance company. This first offer is likely to be lower than your actual damages.
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A personal injury claim can be resolved quickly, even within a few days or weeks. Still, a fast timeline in most cases means accepting a low offer that fails to fully compensate you for immediate damages, let alone long-term expenses you must face. While the personal injury claim process can take months, a personal injury lawyer will work on your behalf to guide you through the process and seek maximum compensation.

To help you better understand how long it will take your claim to settle, consider the following factors that influence your timeline.

Which Factors Influence My Personal Injury Claim?

While some injury claims are settled in a matter of weeks, others can drag on for years. There are many factors that influence how long it takes your claim to settle, but three factors have the biggest influence:

  • You have a claim involving a large amount of money,
  • You have factual or legal issues with your claim, or
  • You have not recovered or reached maximum medical improvement (MMI).

Legal and factual issues can easily slow down how long it takes for your case to settle and influence how much your case is worth. A personal injury case will settle faster when liability and injuries are clear compared to a case in which liability is uncertain or injuries are not clear-cut. This is a common problem with soft tissue injuries and car accidents in which it isn’t clear which driver caused the accident — or when liability is shared. This is why it’s important to work with an experienced injury law firm to help you investigate your accident and document your injuries and liability.

The second-biggest factor affecting your case is how much the case is worth. Unfortunately, cases worth a large amount of money take the longest time to settle. The insurance company will not approve a large payout until they are certain they have investigated every facet of the claim in an attempt to limit or deny a settlement. The more money your case involves, the more in-depth the investigation. Remember that insurance companies do not like to approve settlements until they are sure they have no defense.

You will also need to reach maximum medical improvement (MMI) before your case will settle. If you are still being treated by your doctor, the insurance company cannot be sure if you will remain disabled by your injuries or you will recover, in which case your claim will be worth less. Of course, this can be complicated by the fact that serious injuries take a long time to treat and recover from and you may be unable to work for months while waiting for your settlement.

These are the three most important factors influencing your case, but there may be other issues that affect your timeline. It’s even possible for the size of the insurance company to affect how long it takes to reach a settlement. Your personal injury attorney can help you better understand how long you should expect to wait before making progress on your case.

How a Personal Injury Lawyer Can Help

The more complicated your case, the more important it is to seek experienced legal counsel from an injury law firm. Your injury attorney will act in your best interest to gather evidence that supports your claim and negotiate on your behalf with the insurance company. An attorney can better anticipate roadblocks that may delay your case and build the evidence you need for a speedy settlement.

Rideshare Driver Safety: Is Driving for Uber and Lyft Safe?

Before you choose to apply to drive for Lyft or Uber, you need to be aware about rideshare driver safety. In today’s digital age, the horror stories about ridesharing are no longer new. You are probably thinking that these companies are doing the best they can to ensure the safety of their drivers.

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However, their ability to protect their drivers is relatively limited due to the nature of their business. Drivers are considered contract workers and not employees, which means valid safety training is not required and thus many drivers do not know how to react to emergency situations.

Rideshare Driver Safety According to the Numbers

Regarding threats to drivers, ride-sharing companies claim that they are keeping a detailed report about them. Nonetheless, the companies refuse to share the numbers with the public. By looking at the data released by the federal regulators, you would probably understand why drivers often need legal guidance from rideshare lawyers.

According to the statistics, taxi drivers are more than 20 times likely to be a victim of a murder while they are on the job compared to other types of workers. Rideshare drivers face many of the same, if not exactly the same, risks.

The Bureau of Labor also released a report in 2014 where a shocking 3,200 taxi drivers were murdered or injured while they were on their job. Around 5.6% of them have sustained an injury that was caused by a violent passenger or person. Due to figures like these, the number of drivers getting rideshare insurance is slowly rising.

Ridesharing Companies Are Aware of the Risk

Judging from the action of the ridesharing companies, they are not completely unaware of the safety risks posed to drivers. Nonetheless, they still refuse to reclassify their drivers as employees probably because they want to avoid additional expenses. Instead, they’re finding other ways to address the issue, some of them quite bizarre.

Recently, Uber has tested a toy that is supposed to distract drunk, disruptive passengers from bothering drivers and potentially putting themselves—and others on the road—in danger. The ridesharing company believes that the best way to dissuade passengers from exhibiting disruptive and dangerous behavior is to entertain them and calm their nerves.

There are also reports that said that Uber is testing how mirrors would affect passengers if they could see themselves in them. The idea behind this concept is to allow the passengers to reflect upon their unruly behavior—both in a literal and figurative sense.

Overall, the drivers of the ridesharing companies are left to fend for themselves. More drivers are choosing not to drive during the wee hours of the night and avoiding picking up drunk passengers. Though it may affect the amount that they will earn, their safety is their priority.

There are rideshare lawyers who specialize in protecting drivers and their rights. In case they encounter unfortunate situations while they are in the job, drivers need lawyers who are willing to advocate for their rights and get them the highest amount of compensation possible when negligence leads to injury and other damages.