Tag Archives: personal injury

How Dash Cams are Impacting Personal Injury Cases

Dash cams provide immense amounts of value in personal injury cases because of one word: evidence.

Whether you live in a busy city like Houston or a small rural town, driving your vehicle can be a hazardous experience. It’s easy to forget you (and your fellow passengers) are driving in large pieces of metal that can cause serious injury or death. A serious accident is only one simple mistake away.

Because of this, many commercial vehicles are now being equipped with dash cams. While they are a small investment, dash cams provide a wealth of benefits for the trucking company. Some of the most significant benefits, however, emerge if an accident occurs. Ultimately, dash cams provide game-changing evidence in truck wreck and car accident cases. Even though none of us anticipates being in an accident, dash cams can be just the thing we need to potentially receive compensation for our injuries or defend a claim. 

The Value of Dash Cams in Personal Injury Cases

Dash cams provide immense amounts of value in personal injury cases because of one word: evidence. Dash cam footage provides objective, near-indisputable evidence that can potentially be used in a court of law. At the very least, this evidence can be used in potential settlement negotiations with the at-fault driver’s insurance company.

Depending on the dash cam that you purchase, your camera may be recording the front of your vehicle, the rear, or both. The dash cam records cars, people, and objects around your vehicle as you are driving. Often, the dash cam begins recording when your vehicle is in gear, meaning that you don’t need to turn your camera on and off when you enter and exit your vehicle. Even better, some dash cams display metadata (like date and time) on the recording, providing even more evidence that the dash cam footage should be used as evidence in potential personal injury litigation.

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Court awards record S$8.65m in personal injury claims to cyclist

SINGAPORE — The High Court has awarded S$8.65 million in damages to a cyclist struck by a bundle of overhead cables while riding on a pavement, in what is believed to be the largest payout in a personal injury claim.

While Ms Siew Pick Chiang’s physical injuries were “relatively minor”, the 42-year-old suffered serious post-traumatic stress disorder which saw her hospitalised up to 19 times over seven years after the accident, Justice Woo Bih Li said.

Apart from injuries on her head, face, neck, back and limbs, her memory and cognitive ability were impaired, the court heard. Ms Siew’s frequent meltdowns also disrupted various bodily functions, resulting in urine and faecal incontinence, irritable bowel syndrome and other health problems.

More than half of the payout (S$4.8 million) was to cover her future expenses for medical help and equipment and potential hospitalisation fees, a written judgment released last Thursday stated.

Ms Siew — who was cycling on a pavement along Pasir Ris Drive 8 on Oct 15, 2009 when the accident happened — sought to claim more than S$26 million for medical expenses, hiring caregivers to care for herself and her son who was born six months after the accident, loss of earnings, and taxi fares, among other things.

She launched the lawsuit against Hyundai Engineering & Construction Co Ltd in September 2012. The company was the contractor handling the cables that originated from its worksite.

Hyundai’s lawyer argued that Ms Siew’s “staggering” claim, 13 times the highest award of damages by a Singapore court for a personal injury claim, was a figure that “should give anyone pause for thought”.

The litigation process, which lasted almost four years, was singled out as an “important trigger” for Ms Siew’s stress, Justice Woo said.

Since the accident, she has been in and out of the hospital about 19 times, and remains warded at Mount Elizabeth Hospital since her last admission in February 2014.

Ms Siew, who ran a business providing pre- and post-natal services with her mother before the accident, was awarded S$1.08 million for loss of future earnings and S$4.8 million for anticipated future expenses.

Among the claims that were disallowed included expenses for separate caregivers for her son. There was no “documentary evidence” to support Ms Siew’s claims that part-time caregivers were indeed engaged to care for her son, Justice Woo said, adding that reports from doctors treating her showed that it was her mother who was taking care of her son, now aged six.

“(Ms Siew) submitted that her mother was suffering from stress from the constant worry over (her) … While such an argument might evoke some sympathy from the court, the point is that the plaintiff has to prove her case with evidence and not just rely on arguments,” Justice Woo said.

The judge also slashed her claims for hospital expenses, noting that she was staying in an executive room instead of an ordinary one for most days in the last admission, resulting in a higher charge of S$400 a day. “This was not justifiable,” he said.

The claims for hospital expenses were also inflated because of charges for food for her visitors and supplements and painkillers which “need not be dispensed by the hospital”, he pointed out.

Judge dismisses personal injury case against Smith & Wesson

A federal judge reasoned Smith & Wesson was not at fault in a personal injury case in which a pistol accidentally discharged and caused a man to lose a finger.

U.S. Judge Todd Campbell followed recommendations from the court when he dismissed the case, according to his order issued Sept. 16 from a Nashville federal court.

A Tennessee couple, Randy and Vicki McNeal, sued the Massachusetts’ gun maker for more than $75,000 in January. According to their complaint, Randy McNeal was shot in the finger as he attempted to make the gun safe inside a gun store in Murfreesboro, a town just outside of Nashville. They claimed a loose screw on the built-in laser sight of their Bodyguard .380 pistol prevented the slide from locking in position.

The couple’s lawsuit says McNeal dropped the gun as he tried to lock the slide back, which he was having trouble because the screw obstructed the locking mechanism, and the gun discharged when he tried to catch it. Afterward, he needed the small finger on his left hand amputated.

The court’s report cited past rulings that state an injury is not proof of a defective product, a product failure or malfunction does not necessarily make a company liable, and the company has no duty to create an “accident proof” product.

Full article – http://www.guns.com/2016/10/04/judge-dismisses-personal-injury-case-against-smith-wesson/

How Big Is Cycling? Big Enough to Have Its Own Personal-Injury Lawyer.

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Bruce Deming is happy, mostly for the right reasons, to see Washington’s surge in biking. The trim, 59-year-old DC attorney is a once-avid road racer who still takes the occasional 50-mile weekend ride with the National Capital Velo Club.

But he also sees a market in the snarl of cyclists, drivers, and pedestrians jockeying for space amid construction sites, double-parked vans, and gridlocked intersections. Deming specializes in representing injured bike riders, and business is booming.

“The growth is primarily among new riders in their twenties and thirties who use bikes for transportation,” he says, adding diplomatically, “They’re less skilled in the art of accident avoidance. They also trust in bike lanes a little more than they should.”

Deming began his career suing oil companies for price violations at the Department of Energy 30 years ago. After leaving government in the mid-’80s, he “sort of fell into personal-injury law,” he says. “When I started my practice, I did everything, but I rode bikes daily and I raced. Biking friends called for help.” As Washington increasingly took to two wheels, “one case led to another,” he says. “Bicyclists are a social group, so your name gets around.”

Deming takes only about half of the 200 or so cases he hears about each year, earning about a third of damage awards that range from hundreds of dollars to millions: “I pick my fights—and it’s always a fight.”

What makes bike-injury cases difficult, according to Deming, is cops’ casual attitude toward reporting accidents. Last year, Jeanie Osburn,62, a longtime DC bike commuter, was pedaling near FBI headquarters on Pennsylvania Avenue when a driver slowed while preparing to turn left and fooled Osburn into thinking he saw her. She was wrong—and went to the hospital with back and shoulder injuries. When it came time for Osburn to make a claim against the driver’s insurance company, the police report was inaccurate and incomplete. “There was a sea of blue,” she recalls of her accident scene, “but no officer took down witness names.”

Read Full Article – http://www.washingtonian.com/2016/04/11/cycling-personal-injury-lawyer-biking-in-dc/

Jail Violence Creates Surge of Personal Injury Claims