Injury Law – Common Legal Questions
All sorts of legal questions come to mind when you, or a loved one, is involved in an accident. Do you need a personal injury attorney? How do you know if you have a legal case? What steps should you take after an accident? What if the other driver is uninsured? You need answers from a lawyer specializing in cases of severe and catastrophic injury.
Injured? Have Legal Questions? We Have Answers
Attorney Lawrence K. Land is a personal injury attorney serving Virginia, the Eastern Shore, and surrounding cities. Attorney Land provides the answers to commonly asked legal questions about wrongful death, traffic injuries and traffic accidents, brain injuries and other catastrophic injuries, and wrongful death from negligence in premises liabilities cases.
Legal cases involving catastrophic injury, and death, are our legal focus. Our specialty topics include head injuries, brain injuries and spinal injuries, dog bites and fatalities, falling merchandise and amusement park tragedies. We deal with cases of accidental death, including stairway collapse, severe slip and fall injury, and accidents and deaths caused by security negligence, or other negligence, and similar accidents involving severe injury, or death. If you, or a loved one, has been involved in a tragic accident, call Lawrence K. Land for legal advice.
If you have further legal questions, contact the office of Attorney Lawrence K. Land any time, 24/7, for a Free legal review of your personal injury case.
Frequently Asked Legal Questions
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Each time the brain receives a concussive injury, more stretching and tearing of nerve fibers occurs. The effects of multiple concussive injuries are cumulative. Eventually, a person’s ability to “return to normal” is diminished, causing both the initial and secondary symptoms to persist for longer periods. Multiple concussive injuries are particularly dangerous due to the absence of a loss of consciousness or other physical symptoms that would create the need for medical attention.
Sports coaches and players need to be aware that a blow to the head or even an abrupt, sudden stopping movement of the head, such as a rough tackle in football, can cause a concussive injury. Current research into repetitive concussive injuries indicates that the effects of concussive injuries may lead to the development of protein tangles known as TAU, which are associated with conditions such as Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy and Alzheimer’s Disease.
Browse more frequently asked questions about traumatic brain injuries at TraumaticBrainInjury.net.
Following the accident, a person with a severe brain injury requires medical stabilization to monitor and manage basic life systems such as respiration. Many individuals need neurosurgery to control bleeding inside the brain or between the brain and the skull, repair damaged tissue, or control fluid pressure within the brain. These procedures are invasive and generally require a highly specialized medical treatment team. There may be a phase of intense medical supervision in an Intensive Care Unit (ICU) or in a Neurological Intensive Care Unit (NICU).
As the patient stabilizes and the life threatening aspects of the injury subside, a hospital-based medical rehabilitation program should be considered. Medical rehabilitation programs provide restorative therapies such as physiotherapy, occupational therapy and speech therapy, while continuing to provide medical and nursing supervision. Once hospital-based rehabilitation has been completed the person may require a community-based program or ongoing outpatient rehabilitation services. In cases where the injury has caused severe and persisting deficits and high care needs, the patient may require ongoing rehabilitation in extended or long-term care environments. In these cases, transitional and supported living programs may be appropriate.
Yes. the Brain Injury Association of Virginia offers support groups.
Anyone who has experienced a brain injury, either their own or that of a friend or loved one, understands the worry, confusion, and stress it creates. Support groups provide a chance to learn from others who have been living with brain injury. Visit a group and share your own experiences, and give and get encouragement from those who really understand.
Follow this link: http://biav.net/virginia-support-groups.htm.
A wrongful death suit, or claim, is an action brought against somebody for their responsibility in the death of a third party. While most people associate wrongful death suits with negligence on the part of doctors or hospitals, claims can be filed under a variety of circumstances, including accidents, hazardous conditions or criminal behavior.
How To File A Wrongful Death Lawsuit
Make sure you meet the basic requirements for the filing. You will need proof of death (usually in the form of a death certificate signed by the coroner), evidence or witnesses that another party is at least partially responsible for the death, and a group of people (usually family members) who are suffering emotional or financial trauma as a result of the death.
• Contact a lawyer or court representative to help establish that a lawsuit can be filed. Before you can even present the papers to the authorities, the representative needs to show that there is at least indication that the victim could have been killed by negligence and that the perpetrator can be identified.
• Find out what the regulations are in your state regarding time limits for filing. The sooner you file, the more chances you have of convincing a jury that you are deeply scarred by the events. Also, timing is important if there needs to be an investigation regarding who the guilty party is and just how involved he was in the case. Some states have a statute of limitations, which establishes a window of time in which you are allowed to file. If you wait too long, you forfeit the option of filing at all.
Provide the lawyer with all the paperwork necessary to start the case. It is basically impossible to file a wrongful death suit on your own unless you are familiar with local laws and regulations. In fact, some states or counties do not allow private individuals to file because it would mean long delays in court processing. To find out if you are allowed to file on your own, call the local court and see what the rules are in your jurisdiction.
Consult the Rules of Civil Procedure online for a more detailed breakdown of the steps involved in filing in your particular state, city or county. If you are allowed to file, it will usually involve a series of visits to the local courthouse, where you will be required to fill out forms and present the papers mentioned above (death certificate, evidence, list of possible witness and experts to testify).
Have the other person served with the lawsuit. If you’re filing on your own, this may involve hiring a courier to hand-deliver the notice of suit. As with all other steps, each state has it’s own regulations regarding how serving must be conducted to be legal and approved by the court.
The survivors of a wrongful death victim may vary from state to state, but in general usually include the spouse and minor children.
Yes, although if you do not have all the items on the following list, don’t panic. Part of the personal injury lawyer’s job is to assist you in getting these documents.
Extremely important, included in the list is name and telephone number of each insurance adjuster you have talked to. For your protection, you need to call a personal injury lawyer before you talk to the insurance companies to level the playing field. The claims adjusters/investigators who handle your claim are paid to be nice. They want you to think they are your friend; however, they are not your friend. They are 100% on the side of the insurance company. Do not think for a moment that the claims adjuster is on your side. If you decide you want me to help you, I will be on your side 100%.
Checklist Of Information And Documents To Collect For Your Lawyer After An Injury
- Name and address of ambulance service, if applicable
- Name and address of the emergency room where you were initially taken
- Dates you were admitted to the emergency room and hospital
- Names and business addresses of all doctors who have examined you
- Name and addresses of chiropractors you have consulted
- Names of all people involved in the accident
- Names and addresses of witnesses to the accident
- Dates you missed work because of the accident
- Name and telephone number of each insurance adjuster if you have spoken to any
- List of people you have spoken to about the accident or your injuries
- Accident report
- Copies of any written statements
- Your automobile insurance policy, if you were injured in a car accident, along with the “declarations” page or “coverage certificate” that sets forth what kinds of coverage you have and your
- policy limits
- Your homeowner’s or renter’s policy, along with the declarations page, or certificate
- Medical, or disability, insurance policy or certificate
- Other policies, including major medical, hospitalization, veterans insurance, etc.
- All correspondence you have received from any insurer about the accident or your injuries
- Medical bills
- Receipts for things you have had to buy because of your injury
- Receipts for things you have had to fix because of the accident
I hope this information has been helpful.
Accepting blame and apologizing to another driver may be used as evidence against you. After an accident people are usually emotional and very stressed, so you are probably not in the best position to assess what caused the accident. The cause of the accident could be anything from a defective car part or another’s negligent driving. Leave it to a judge or jury to decide who is at fault.
Virginia Graduated Driver Licensing (GDL) and Driver License Requirements
Under Virginia’s Graduated Driver Licensing Program, teens must be at least 15 ½ years of age to begin the process. The first step is the learner permit. To obtain an instruction permit you must:
• Complete a state approved driver education program
• Complete 45 hours of practice driving, including 15 hours at night
• Pass a two-part knowledge test
• Pass a vision screening test
You must also provide the following documents to the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles:
• Social security number
• Proof of Virginia residency
• Proof of legal presence in the U.S.
• Signature of parent or legal guardian
• $5 fee
Your instruction permit is valid for 14 months, but once you have completed all of the terms of the instruction permit phase and you are at least 16 years and 3 months old, you will be eligible to apply for an intermediate license. You will have to pass another vision and knowledge test, as well as a driving test. You will have to complete an application and pay the $5 fee.
During the intermediate phase, you must remain accident and citation free in order to qualify for an unrestricted Virginia driver license. You must also wait for a notice in the mail from the Department of Motor Vehicles to attend a licensing ceremony. All teen drivers under the age of 18 must attend a licensing ceremony with a parent or legal guardian. You will receive your permanent driver license at the ceremony.
If the other driver’s insurance company agrees to pay what your lawyer thinks the case is worth, and you are happy with that amount, then your case will not need to go to court. This is usually the case. Although some cases do require a trial. Whichever the case, contacting an experiened personal injury attorney is in your best interest.
Yes, you should report if you have reason to believe that you are a victim of Virginia medical malpractice and that a doctor, hospital, nurse or any other medical provider failed to act in accordance with standard medical practice, you should file a report with the Virginia Board of Medicine’s Department of Health Professions about your injury. You can reach the Virginia Department of Health Profession’s at 1-800-533-1560, or (804) 367-4691.
Norfolk medical malpractice attorney Lawrence K. Land can advise you on how to proceed with your medical malpractice claim. To learn more, contact Attorney Land at 757-625-1911.
Yes, there is an alert system you can sign up on for product recalls. The US Consumer Product Safety Commission has a subscription list for alerts. You can choose which alerts you would like to receive or choose them all.
You can also havs CPSC Recalls on your Website
To sign up; ON-line Form for CPSC Subscription Lists
Virginia does not have a Dog Bite Statute. However an injured person can recover damages for injuries caused by a dog against it’s owner if the plaintiff proves the owner’s negligence caused the dog bite injury.
Mild traumatic brain injury is also called “subtle acquired brain injury.” People with mild or subtle brain injuries have cognitive, psychological and physical symptoms that occur after the injury. They usually do not experience a prolonged period of unconsciousness or coma. In fact, some individuals report no loss of consciousness. The effects of a mild brain injury can range from psychological problems such as depression and anxiety to substance abuse and/or addiction.
Through recent research we have learned that mild brain injury can produce problems that occur long after the initial injury and can affect many aspects of a person’s life.
If your doctor prescribes the right drug but in the wrong dosage, this may be considered legally negligent and may create a cause of action for a medical malpractice suit. Your ability to sue your doctor for malpractice depends on whether his actions meet the legal definition of negligence, and on whether or not that negligence damaged you in some way.
How can I file a successful medical malpractice suit?
In order to sue your doctor for medical malpractice, you must prove:
• That your doctor breached the required legal standard of care.
• That the breach of the legal standard of care was the proximate or direct cause of some injury you sustained.
How can I prove negligence?
To determine if your doctor breached the standard of care, a negligent professional standard is used. The physician is compared with a reasonable physician of similar specialty and educational background. For example, in this particular case, if no reasonable physician would have prescribed the wrong dosage of the medication in question, then the doctor may be viewed as having breached the standard of care.
How can I prove injury?
Negligence alone isn’t enough to make a doctor liable for malpractice. The negligence must have been the direct cause of some type of compensable injury.
For example, if your doctor prescribed the right drug in the wrong dosage but you realized the mistake before you took a pill, you didn’t really suffer any compensable damage. While perhaps you might have had to make a second trip to the pharmacy to correct the error, there is nothing for your doctor to actually compensate you for.
On the other hand, if you took the incorrect dosage and it caused you to suffer a severe stroke and require rehabilitation and lifetime care, then a large medical malpractice suit may be possible.
If you believe you may have been the victim of medical malpractice, you should contact an experienced personal injury lawyer immediately. A lawyer can help determine if you have valid claim.
I will answer your question from my book 5 DEADLY SINS THAT CAN DESTROY YOUR ACCIDENT CLAIM.
THE FIRST DEADLY SIN: Talking with an insurance company before you talk to a lawyer… Don’t do it.
Do not talk to the insurance company or your insurance agent until you speak with an experienced personal injury attorney. After you have been involved in a vehicle accident you are clearly emotionally traumatized. Many people will tell you that you should contact your insurance company. Stop. After you go to the emergency room you should call an attorney immediately. Many times the insurance company will learn about your case and call you for a recorded statement. Do not give them any statement. Do not allow them to record your statement. Do not give any statement until you talk to a personal injury attorney to guide you.
The claims adjuster will do everything they can do to destroy your case. If you guess at your speed or say anything that can hurt your case, you may lose your entire case. The insurance company will try to use everything you say against you so that they will not have to pay you any money or as little money as possible. Insurance claims adjusters are looking out for the insurance company 100%.
You order my book from our website for free. I wrote the book to answer questions just like this. I hope this has been helpful.
Lawrence K. Land