The Importance of Seeing a Chiropractor When Filing a Personal Injury Claim

When you’ve been involved in a car accident for which you weren’t at fault, you’ll likely want to explore your options for seeking compensation for injuries you suffered. One of the most common methods of recovering damages is by filing a personal injury claim. However, these claims aren’t automatically accepted, which is why it’s essential that you take some steps to increase your chances for a successful claim.

Recovering Damages

A personal injury claim is a type of insurance claim that’s filed against the at-fault driver who caused your car crash. If you sustained injuries from this accident, it’s possible for you to obtain a substantial amount of compensation to cover everything from your specific medical costs to wages you’ve lost during your time off of work because of your injury.

Proof of Injury

In order for your personal injury claim to be accepted, you’ll need to provide proof that you’ve received medical care, which is why it’s important for you to keep track of any medical bills you receive and documents that detail the extent of your injuries. Even if you believe that you haven’t been injured in a crash, injuries from a car crash can take weeks to show signs, especially if the accident involved whiplash. If you’ve sustained a serious injury that requires surgery, a chiropractor Gaithersburg MD trusts can help you significantly with your recovery.

The Importance of a Chiropractic Examination

There are many types of common injuries that aren’t always obvious immediately after an accident. However, they can be detected and treated by a chiropractor. If these injuries are left untreated, you run the risk of developing a severe chronic condition and it may not be covered by your insurance. A study administered by the Centers for Disease Control in 2012 shows that just under 7,000 people went to an emergency room for treatment every day due to a car accident. This underscores the importance of seeking detection and treatment of your injuries before filing a claim.

If you’ve been involved in a car accident, it’s essential that you see a chiropractor or doctor immediately. A medical professional will document your injuries. Keep copies of your medical records and copies of any bills associated with your injuries. They will need to be submitted with your claim.

Why You Should Seek a Personal Injury Attorney When Filing a Claim

When you’ve been injured in a car accident, you shouldn’t have to deal with the costs and hardships that come with recovering from an accident that wasn’t even your fault. By retaining a personal injury lawyer, you increase your chances of having your claim approved. Once you’ve retained a personal injury lawyer, they will be able to assist you in filling out your claim and obtaining any necessary documents.

While it’s possible for your claim to be approved without the help of a personal injury attorney, there’s a much higher likelihood that you’ll be successful with their assistance. An experienced personal injury lawyer should be familiar with what is necessary to receive maximum compensation for damages sustained in an accident.

Pain & Arthritis Relief CenterThanks to our friends and contributors from Pain & Arthritis Relief Center for their insight into chiropractic care after a personal injury.

Common Causes of Medication Errors

Medication errors are far from rare; it’s estimated that medication mistakes kill one person every day but cause injury to about 1.3 million people every year across the US. Medication mistakes can occur at any point in the distribution system, from repackaging and dispensing to administering, prescribing, and monitoring. Unfortunately, most medication mistakes are preventable, leading to millions of avoidable injuries and fatalities.

Avoiding medication errors requires vigilance on the part of pharmacists, nurses, doctors, nursing home staff, and individuals. The following are the most common types and causes of these medical mistakes and how they can be prevented.

Types of Prescription Errors

The most common types of prescription errors include:

  • Errors in drug preparation when the medication is improperly formulated
  • Improper method of dosing
  • Incorrect dosage scheduling
  • Omission errors or failing to give a scheduled dose
  • Prescription mistakes such as the wrong dose, quantity, form, method, concentration, or rate of admission or the wrong drug selection based on a patient’s indications or allergies
  • Fragmented care mistakes due to a lack of communication between medical professionals

What Causes Medication Mistakes?

Medication mistakes can happen anywhere. Older adults are at the highest risk of medication mistakes as they often take many prescription drugs, although prescription errors can affect anyone. Aside from errors by the patient, medication mistakes are most likely to happen at pharmacies, hospitals, and nursing homes.

Many prescription mistakes are often due to:

  • Human error, such as being distracted while reading a drug name, insufficient knowledge of contraindications and side effects, typographical errors, lack of communication, or memory lapse.
  • A patient may be inadvertently responsible for a medication error by failing to inform the doctor and/or pharmacist of their full medical history and the drugs they currently take.
  • A doctor, pharmacist, or nursing home staff member may be responsible for the mistake if they overlook medical information, contraindications, drug interactions, or are otherwise negligent.

Preventing Medication Errors

Avoiding potentially dangerous prescription errors requires cooperation and communication between patients, medical professionals, and staff in nursing homes and hospitals. Ways to prevent these mistakes include:

  • Know the patient by checking name, date of birth, weight, age, allergies, and other information before administering medication. The use of barcode armbands can help reduce the risk of administering errors.
  • Know the drug. Doctors, pharmacists, and doctors should use accurate drug information. Even if a doctor prescribes a medication with the wrong frequency, drug, or dose, another medical professional in the chain — such as the nurse who administers the drug — can avoid a dangerous error.
  • Strong communication. If you are a patient starting a new drug, ask about what the drug should do, how long it will take to see results, the dose, possible side effects, what to do if you miss a dose, and if it will interact with other medications.
  • Accurate documentation. Medical professionals should maintain accurate records of drugs that are administered, including drug name, dose, time, route, patient response, and whether the patient refused.
  • Medication reconciliation, an important process that involves comparing a patient’s current prescription orders to all medications the patient is taking. This process can help prevent omissions, duplications, dosage mistakes, and drug interactions.

Prescription Errors and Medical Malpractice

Many medication errors are caused by medical negligence on the part of a pharmacy, doctor, nurse, or nursing home staff member. Doctors who prescribe medications have a duty to assess the benefits and risks of the drug against the patient’s health, the known side effects of the drug, and how the drug will interact with other medications the patient is taking. Pharmacists have a legal duty to correctly read and fill the doctor’s prescription. Nurses and care providers who administer drugs have a duty to provide the right drug in the right dose at the correct time and within accepted protocol.

If a medical provider fails in any of these duties, you may have a valid medical malpractice claim if you are injured as a result. Medical malpractice lawsuits are notoriously complex, but an experienced personal injury lawyer Charlottesville VA trusts can help you investigate your case to determine if a medical provider’s negligence contributed to your injury, whether it was caused by a failure to warn, a dispensing error, or wrongful administration.

MartinWren, P.C.Thanks to our friends and contributors from MartinWren, P.C. for their insight into medical malpractice and personal injury cases.

Should You Revise Your Will After Getting a Personal Injury Settlement?

A personal injury settlement is compensation awarded to a person who suffered a personal injury caused by another person or a company. In some instances, the personal injury award can be significant. Also, depending on the agreement, the settlement may be paid out as a lump sum or as a series of separate payments.

Regardless of how it’s paid out, if there will be funds left over after paying for your medical bills, you may wish to consider revising your will. However, there are several issues to consider before making your decision.

Relationship Changes

It’s not uncommon for a serious personal injury to leave the victim with long term or even permanent disability. The resulting condition can force drastic changes in the person’s life that might include structural changes to their house for easier access to the inability to return to the workforce. Sadly, debilitating injuries can also affect personal relationships– with partners, friends, and family members. This can change your view as to who should inherit your assets after you pass. On the upside, you may have a person or persons who enter your life as a result of your injury and who go to great lengths to care for you. As a result, you may want to include these caregivers in your will.

Legal Consultation

It is important to talk to a wills and trusts lawyer Scottsdale AZ relies on about updating a will to include personal injury settlement details. An estate planning attorney can review your situation, the terms of your settlement, and your final issues. After careful consideration, your attorney can then provide guidance as to how you may want to construct your will to reflect your final wishes. In addition, you may wish to ask yourself these questions when determining if you should update your will after receiving a personal injury settlement:

  • After your injury related costs have been covered by your settlement, do you have a sum of money left over? If so, you may wish to designate heirs for any monies left over after your passing.
  • Do you wish to add anyone to your will who you did not name in your current will?
  • Do you wish to remove anyone from your will who you had previously named?
  • Do you currently have ongoing medical care costs that will cease after your passing? Your settlement award might have been calculated to include costs beyond your life expectancy. In that case, your estate may end up with more assets than you had anticipated.

If you received a personal injury settlement award, you may wish to consider consulting an estate planning attorney about the possibility of revising your will.

Hildebrand LawThanks to our friends and contributors from Hildebrand Law for their insight into estate planning and wills.

Be Careful What You Post To Social Media After a Car Accident

Today, social media is a major part of most of our lives. We love to post updates to let our friends know what is going on in our world. It seems many people are not aware of the actual legal issues that social media can create for them. When major events such as a car accident occur in our lives, we want to post that we are okay and let our friends and family know what happened. However, if you aren’t careful these posts could harm any future personal injury claims.

Our social media accounts are clear records that simply never go away. Anything you post will be up for the long haul, and this can create very real problems if you post something that conflicts with the claims of your case. Every bit of the statements and pictures that can be found on your Facebook page can be used against you in court. For example, any admission of guilt, or anything sound like an admission of guilt, in a Facebook post letting your friends know you were in an accident can stop a personal injury claim dead in its tracks.

It isn’t only admissions of guilt that can harm your claim though. If you are attempting to ask for compensation for pain and suffering as a result of the accident, the defendant will pull anything they can to disprove you. If you have dozens of pictures on various social media sites of a ski trip you took since the accident, this can be used by the defendant to show that you are not suffering.

Of course, we cannot realistically list everything you can do on social media that may hurt your personal injury claim after an accident. To protect yourself, you need to retain a skilled lawyer, like car accident attorney Dekalb County GA trusts, in your area and communicate with them regularly. If you ever consider any post or picture might hurt your case, speak with your attorney first. Your attorney will know the intricacies of your case, and be able to predict the arguments that the other side could present. If it is too late, and you are concerned you may have posted something already that might be damaging, make sure that your attorney is aware of it so that you can start preparing for any opposition built on the post.

It is always a good idea to be careful what you post on social media, but please remember that this advice is tenfold when you have an active legal battle underway.

Andrew R. Lynch, P.C.Thanks to our friends and contributors from Andrew R. Lynch, P.C. for their insight into social media after a car accident.

5 Things You Have to Prove to Qualify for SSDI

Too often, the very people who need Social Security Disability (SSDI) don’t know if they qualify or why they might not be approved. They enter the process confused about how it works. And as a result, the SSA denies their application.

As a disability lawyer Memphis TN has trusted for years with their SSDI cases, I know the system inside and out. I’ve seen how frustrating and complicated it can get. But these 5 factors will help you understand why you might or might not qualify for disability benefits:

  1. Work History

The “I” in SSDI stands for “insurance.” SSDI works like any other insurance policy. Every time you receive a paycheck, you and your employer pay into the system through a tax. Those payments earn you work credits. And you need to have a certain minimum of work credits within a certain amount of years to earn disability coverage through the SSDI program.

  1. Your Age

Along with your work history, the SSA takes your age into account. They understand a 21-year-old likely hasn’t been able to earn the work credits that a 53-year-old might have earned over their lifetime. Younger applicants often need fewer years of work credits earned up. That said, you can never have too many work credits. The more you have, the more it will help your case.

  1. Your Condition

Certain conditions are considered so severe that they automatically qualify for SSDI. These include conditions like pancreatic cancer, ALS, and inflammatory breast cancer. Other conditions commonly receive benefits but may require a little more information to help make your case. And some conditions need a lot of evidence to show the SSA how debilitating they might be.

  1. Your Ability to Work

When applying for SSDI, you have to show your condition has impaired your ability to do the work you used to do. SSDI exists for people whose physical limitations prevent them from the level of gainful employment they might otherwise have. You also need to show you can’t get other related work. Age and work experience play a role in this, along with your physical and mental condition. For example, the SSA assumes younger applicants would generally have an easier time training into another area of work than someone in their late 50s.

  1. Your Income

Some people apply for disability and also earn a small amount of income on the side. Perhaps you might not be able to work full-time, but you can sell the occasional item on eBay. The SSA looks at this income to determine your eligibility. Your income needs to fall beneath a certain maximum in order to be eligible. That exact amount changes year-to-year.

When applying for disability insurance, you should speak with an attorney, and the sooner the better. An attorney only receives a small portion of your past-due benefits, so the sooner you get approved, the more you save. SSDI lawyers help you navigate the very complicated application process. The vast majority of applications get denied the first time around, but that estimate changes for the better when you have a lawyer. So it’s within everyone’s best interest that you not go it alone.

 Darrell Castle & Associates, PLLCThanks to our friends and contributors from Darrell Castle & Associates, PLLC for their insight into the SSDI application process.

Supreme Court Restricts Lawsuits Against Companies

In May of 2017, the U.S. Supreme Court placed location limits on personal injury lawsuits, effectively limiting the locations where companies can be sued. In many respects, this is a victory for corporations and a loss for the ability of plaintiffs to bring legal claims in state courts that have laws that favor plaintiffs in personal injury lawsuits.

What follows are the facts of this influential case and the legal takeaway points to keep in mind for personal injury law.

BNSF Railway Co. v. Tyrrell

The plaintiffs in this case sued a Texas-based railway company for separate and unrelated injuries. One plaintiff was injured on the job in Washington state, and the other plaintiff was injured in Iowa, Minnesota and South Dakota. Both plaintiffs sued according to the Federal Employers’ Liability Act, which is a federal statute enacted in 1908 that permits railroad employees to sue their employer for compensation if they are injured at work.

The Washington plaintiff alleged a slip-and-fall accident caused his injuries, whereas the other plaintiff alleged that her husband developed kidney cancer after being exposed to carcinogenic chemicals while working on the job in the three aforementioned states.

Both plaintiffs sued in Montana, the state where the railway company does most of its business. Traditionally, this has not been a problem since plaintiffs have typically been able to file suit against a company where they do a significant amount of business, are based or incorporated. Using this traditional reasoning, the lower court allowed the plaintiffs to sue the company in Montana.

The Supreme Court reversed the lower court’s ruling in an 8-1 decision, holding that state courts do not have jurisdiction to hear a plaintiff’s claims against companies if the company is not based in the state or the injuries did not occur in the state where the plaintiffs file suit.

Legal Significance of the Supreme Court’s Decision

With this case, it seems clear the Supreme Court is determined to put an end to so-called “forum shopping”, where plaintiffs try to find the most friendly court for their personal injury lawsuit. In light of this decision, it appears that corporations emerge as clear winners from this case.

Corporations in opposition to a plaintiff’s forum shopping will likely be able to prevent a plaintiff from filing suit in a state if the injuries did not occur there and the corporation does not do a significant amount of business in that state.

Justice Sotomayor was the lone dissenter, and she worries that corporations will no longer be subject to general jurisdiction anywhere “other than their principal places of business or incorporation.” It remains to be seen whether Justice Sotomayor will be proven correct in the years ahead, but in the interim it seems that plaintiffs have had their lawsuit location options narrowed significantly in the aftermath of this important Supreme Court decision.

If you are concerned about how this Supreme Court case could affect your personal injury lawsuit, contact a lawyer Tampa FL relies on today.

McKinney Law Group Thanks to our friends and contributors from McKinney Law Group for their insight into supreme court restrictions against companies.

Does Homeowners Insurance Cover Slip and Fall Accidents?

Most slip and fall accidents in residential homes involve tripping or slipping on carpets, rugs, or the floor; slipping or tripping on stairs; or slipping or tripping on ice, snow, or sidewalks. While in most cases a homeowner may be held liable for an accident that happened on his property, there are exceptions where he is not held accountable. For instance, if a person loses his balance randomly and falls, the homeowner is not liable.

As a homeowner, you’re not always responsible for every slippery or other unsafe conditions on your property. Simply because someone fell on your property and got hurt doesn’t mean that you were negligent. The condition that caused the accident has to be unreasonably unsafe in order for you to compensate the claimant. Keep reading to learn more about the nature of slip and fall claims.

When Does Your Homeowner’s Insurance Cover a Slip and Fall Accident?

If someone is injured on your property, your insurer should cover any injury claim filed if found legitimate. Homeowner’s insurance policy generally has two separate types of coverages, namely liability coverage and medical payment coverage. The liability coverage takes care of all losses associated with the injury, while the medpay coverage pays for the medical bill.

Remember that there must have been some negligence on your part as a homeowner in order for liability coverage to kick in. Your insurer may start taking actions if the slip and fall accident was a result of one of the following:

  • Wet floors
  • Leaking ceilings
  • Carpets with holes in them
  • Stairs with a foreign substance
  • Stairs with shallow steps
  • Carpets with frayed edges
  • Stairs without handrails or are poorly designed
  • Risers of varying heights or wrong height
  • Poorly placed rugs or carpets on the stairs

As a homeowner, you must act reasonably to keep your property in a reasonable state of repair.

What To Do If a Slip and Fall Claim Is Filed Against You

If someone slips and falls on your property and files a claim through your insurance company, then the first action that you should take is to cooperate with your insurer’s adjusters as they investigate the case. Be sure to as honest as you can and provide accurate information as to what condition caused the accident, how and where the mishap occurred, if or when you became aware of the accident, and so on.

After it has been determined that injuries sustained were a result of your negligence, the adjuster will go ahead to determine whether your homeowner’s insurance can cover those injury claims.

Your insurer should be able to cover you as much as your intention wasn’t malicious, or you didn’t purposely cause the slip and fall accident. Where the slip and fall case seem to go in favor of the plaintiff, your insurance company may try to pursue an outside-the-court settlement. However, if the case proceeds to court, your insurer should be able to pay for all expenses that you’ll incur, including the settlement determined by the court for a lost case.

If your insurance company is dragging its heels on your case, or it’s trying to deny coverage for legitimate slip and fall call claims, it may be time to hire a slip and fall lawyer Charlottesville VA trusts. A reputable law firm may be able to help you get what is rightfully yours.

MartinWren P.C.Thanks to our friends and contributors from MartinWren P.C. for their insight into slip and fall cases.

How a Personal Injury Settlement Could Affect Child Support Payments

If you’re dealing with a personal injury case and you also make child support payments, it’s important to know that an injury settlement could affect your payment plan. There are several ways that an award could affect your payments, so it’s often recommended that you speak to a family law attorney about your situation. The following is some general information that may be helpful on this issue.

1. Overdue Payments:

If you’ve recently experienced a personal injury, you might have fallen behind on your child support payments. This is understandable — after all, a serious injury can be very stressful and a personal injury claim can be very time-consuming. However, you have a legal and financial obligation to make your payments on time or as soon as possible. If you’ve fallen behind on payments and then you receive an injury award, you might be required to use some or all of your settlement money for child support.

2. Consideration of Taxable or Nontaxable Income:

The majority of states consider a personal injury settlement to be personal income, meaning they can be taxed and can also be considered when calculating or recalculating child support payment. Other states, such as Alabama, New York, and Pennsylvania, have restrictions on settlement amounts being considered personal income. For example, if a settlement exceeds $1,000, that money might be considered personal income; if a settlement is under $1,000, the state might decide that it’s not income.

3. Reflection of Applicable Worth:

A substantial settlement might result in higher child support payments, especially if there is significant compensation from awards for punitive damages. If your settlement focuses primarily on compensation for medical bills and daily living expenses, you might not see a major change in child support requirements.

4. Loss of Wages or Ability to Work: 

Many injured victims find that they need to take time off from work to recover. This can lead to lost wages, which may affect a person’s income and therefore their child support payments. Personal injury settlements often compensate for lost wages, so it’s likely that some of this compensation will have to go toward child support payments. If this is relevant in your situation, a family law attorney can work with you to figure out how much of a settlement will likely be directed into child support payments.

Talk to a child custody lawyer Peoria IL relies on or personal injury lawyer about how your particular situation may be affected by child support payments and a personal injury award.

Smith & Weer, P.C.Thanks to our friends and contributors from Smith & Weer, P.C. for their insight into the effects of a personal injury award on child support payments.

Common Work-Related Eye Injuries

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration, or OSHA, reports that workplace eye injuries cost an estimated $300 million annually in lost employee productivity, medical treatment and expenses, and workers’ compensation payments of different types. Here are a few of the most common injuries.

1. Projectiles or Flying Objects: In the case of a manufacturing or industrial occupation, oftentimes equipment — if malfunctioning or improperly used — can cause objects to become airborne. In many situations, the force with which these tools give way to an object can cause extreme — possibly even life-threatening — damage.

2. Chemical Contact: Businesses that manufacture, transport, or interact with large quantities of dangerous chemicals are obviously a concern here, but did you know almost all jobs have chemicals on site that may result in eye injuries — even cleaning supplies can be dangerous to your eyes, if improperly used. If one of these chemicals end up in a person’s eye, severe damage will likely result. Indeed, permanent damage is a possibility in some instances.

3. Loose Particles: Particles in the air may cause eye injuries in the workplace as well. Particles can end up in the work environment in a number of ways. Without proper ventilation, these particles may accumulate in the air in the workplace, ultimately coming into contact with with a worker’s eyes. While they may seem like a slight irritation, these particles have the potential to cause irrevocable damage like scarring or scratches to the iris, cornea, and all other parts of a worker’s eye.

4. Occupational Tools: Tools of different types represent another common cause of eye injuries in the workplace. More often than not, when a tool causes an eye injury it is because the piece is not being used properly. However, there are some tools that are inherently dangerous themselves and pose a threat to a worker even if used properly.

5. Fatigue: With technology like computer, tablet and phone screens becoming ubiquitous in many workplaces, over-strained and over exposed eye injuries are becoming more and more common. This kind of injury many not be as immediate as a traumatic encounter with some of the above listed hazards, but can cause vision loss and impairment overtime in the same way.

Workers’ Compensation Claim

Injury to the eyes on the job is very serious — especially if it keeps your from executing your occupational responsibilities. If you’ve suffered an injury as a result of exposure to any one of the above hazards, you may be able to file a workers compensation claim with the help of a competent Palm Beach County workers compensation lawyer. These claims may be vital if you’re no longer able to work as a result of your injury.

FRANKS, KOENIG & NEUWELTThanks to our colleagues from The Law Offices of Franks, Koenig & Neuwelt for their insight into workers compensation claims.

Medical Malpractice Practice

Medical errors kill more Americans annually than motor vehicle accidents, firearms and suicide combined, according to researchers at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.  Despite this, hospitals and medical providers are doing very little to determine how to prevent them from happening. Between 210,000 and 440,000 patients suffer from some type of preventable harm that contributes to their death each year after going to the hospital for care, according to 2014 Journal of Patient Safety. Medical errors are now the third-leading cause of death in America, behind heart disease and cancer.

This estimate is based on a review of medical files that identified preventable harm suffered by patients known as “adverse events,” using use a screening method called the Global Trigger Tool, which guides reviewers through medical records, searching for signs of infection, injury or error. Medical records flagged during the initial screening are reviewed by a doctor, who determines the extent of the harm. In the studies, which examined records of more than 4,200 patients hospitalized between 2002 and 2008, researchers found serious adverse events in as many as 21% of cases reviewed and rates of lethal adverse events as high as 1.4 percent of cases.  By combining the findings and extrapolating across 34 million hospitalizations in 2007, preventable errors contribute to the deaths of 210,000 hospital patients annually.  However, that is the baseline. The actual number more than doubles because the trigger tool does not catch errors in which treatment should have been provided but wasn’t because medical records are missing some evidence of harm and because diagnostic errors are not captured.

An estimate of 440,000 deaths from care in hospitals is roughly one-sixth of all deaths that occur in the United States each year. The study also cited other research that’s shown hospital reporting systems and peer-review capture only a fraction of patient harm or negligent care.

These studies demonstrate the importance of obtaining a second opinion before undergoing invasive tests and procedures, as a medical malpractice lawyer Baltimore MD trusts can attest.  Many patients do not seek another opinion from a second because it may be time-consuming or they do not want to offend their physician.  However, second opinions can be an invaluable tool to prevent unnecessary tests and procedures.  In cases of elective surgeries, for example, studies have found 30% of patients receive different opinions from a second physician.  Additionally, obtaining a second opinion helps ensure that the most qualified physician performs the recommended procedure.

Medical malpractice actions prevent hospitals and medical providers from sweeping medical errors under the rug.  When a patient files suit over a medical error, the information is made public.  Medical providers who would not normally have been informed of the medical mistake will know about the medical error and will have an opportunity to learn from it. The legal process plays an important role in holding hospitals and medical providers accountable for medical mistakes when they do occur and in preventing future medical mistakes from happening.

Greenberg Law OfficesThanks to our friends and contributors from Greenberg Law Offices for their insight into medical malpractice practice.