Episode 32: Deposition Preparation Essentials

Last updated on: November 30, 2022

Summary:

In this episode, Zinda Law Group CEO and founder Jack Zinda gives you quick tips on how to prepare your client for a deposition.

Discussed in this Episode:
  • Why is deposition preparation important?
  • Preparation steps
  • Mock deposition
Why is Deposition Preparation Important?
How your client does in a deposition will make or break how the defense evaluates your case. You cannot put too much time into a deposition.
Preparation Steps
These steps will allow you to properly prepare for the deposition. 1. Understand the defense’s case. 2. Make sure the client understands what the setting will be like 3. Do not overload the client with too much information. 4. Make sure the client knows to tell the truth.
Mock Deposition
Get your client familiar with the process by practicing with someone else from your staff. If your client is struggling with a mock deposition, the worst thing you can do is add negativity to the situation. Keep your client feeling positive.
You can reach Jack at:
[email protected]
512-246-2224

Spinal Injury From Car Accident and What to Do Next

Last updated on: November 30, 2022

Call (800) 863 5312 to speak with Spinal cord injury lawyers at zinda law group for free

After getting involved in a car accident, you may be left with serious injuries, including a spinal cord injury. These injuries can cause permanent changes in your bodily functions and may require extensive and on-going medical care. Understanding what to do following a car accident and subsequent spinal cord injury may help keep you safe and maintain your future personal injury lawsuit.   

If you have been involved in a car accident and are now suffering from a neck, back, or spine injury, call Zinda Law Group at (800) 863 5312 for your 100% free consultation. You will not pay us anything unless we are successful in winning your case.

What is a Spinal Cord Injury

A spinal cord injury is any damage to the spinal cord or nerves at the end of the spinal canal. These injuries, often serious, may cause permanent changes in bodily functions, including strength and sensation below the injury location.

Always seek medical attention if you have received significant trauma to the head or neck, as spinal cord injuries may be exacerbated with lack of treatment.

How to Avoid Spinal Cord Injuries in Car Accidents

There are some prevention techniques you can use to avoid spinal cord injuries. For example, you can wear a seatbelt every time you’re in a moving car or truck. Additionally, avoid drinking and driving or getting into a car with someone who is under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

Common Spine Injuries from Car Accidents

There are many different types of spinal cord injuries that may be caused by a car accident. These injuries range in severity and may include:

  •       Whiplash. Whiplash is often caused by a forceful rapid back-and-forth movement of the neck. This motion may cause severe injury to the bones in the spine, so it is crucial to see your doctor after receiving any traumatic injury to your neck.  
  •       Herniated disk. A herniated disk occurs when there is an issue with the disks that sit between the vertebrae in your spine and are most common in the lower back.  
  •       Spinal fracture. A spinal fracture occurs when there is a breaking in any one of the 33 bones that make up your spinal column, otherwise referred to as your vertebrae. Severe spinal fractures will need to be surgically repaired.
  •       Spondylolisthesis. Spondylolisthesis is when one of your vertebrae slips out of place onto the vertebra below it. Surgery is often the most successful treatment for serious cases.
  •       Spinal stenosis. Spinal stenosis occurs when the inside space of the backbone is too small, putting pressure on the spinal cord and nerves. Spinal injuries resulting from car accidents or other trauma may cause spinal stenosis.   
  •       Spinal cord damage. These injuries are any damage to the spinal cord or the nerves at the end of the spinal canal. These damages often cause permanent changes in bodily functions below the location of the injury.

Always seek medical attention if your neck or back is injured following a car accident, as this may be a sign of more serious spine injuries. After you are safe, contact Zinda Law Group to begin your spinal cord injury lawsuit.

Treating a Spinal Injury from a Car Accident

Unfortunately, spinal cord damage cannot be reversed. There are, however, certain treatments a medical professional may use to mitigate the severity. For example, a doctor may immobilize the spine, use medication, perform surgery, or even use experimental treatments, such as lowering the body temperature to prevent inflammation, to improve nerve function and regeneration.

Spinal Cord Injury Symptoms

There are many different symptoms associated with spinal cord injuries. These symptoms will depend on where the injury occurred and on the severity of your injury. These symptoms include:

  •         Loss of movement
  •         Loss of bladder control
  •         Loss of bowel control
  •         Altered sensation
  •         Changes in sexual function
  •         Difficulty breathing
  •         Coughing
  •         Exaggerated reflex activities.

In addition, emergency signs and symptoms include:

  •         Paralysis
  •         Extreme back pain
  •         Numbness
  •         Difficulty walking or with balance
  •         Oddly positioned or twisted back or neck.

Long-Term Medical Costs and Injury Claims

Spinal cord injuries can be life-threatening and life changing. Whenever you suffer a spinal cord injury, and it’s the result of a negligent act or omission of another person, you want to make sure that you hire a lawyer who can get everything set up in order to get the care that you’ll need for the rest of your life.

One of the ways that you do this is you hire a life care planner who writes a report with all the items that you will need for the rest of your life, as well as a cost for those items. You want to make sure that you hire a lawyer who can get a reputable life care planner, so that you can get everything that you will need for your future care.

As spinal cord injuries may lead to long-term medical care and needs, it is important to contact an attorney in your state with experience in pursuing these kinds of claims and who has the ability to connect you with a reliable and trustworthy life care planner.

Seeking Compensation With the Help of a Car Accident Lawyer

After being involved in a car crash, you may need the help of an experienced accident lawyer to help you pursue the maximum amount of compensation available in your specific claim. In general, there are two different types of compensation you may be able to seek following a car accident. These include:

Economic Damages. Economic damages include out-of-pocket expenses, such as hospital bills, pharmaceutical costs, and property damage.

Non-Economic Damages.  Non-economic damages include non-monetary costs, such as disability, disfigurement, and loss of enjoyment of life.

Spinal cord injuries may leave you with substantial medical bills and emotional distress. In order to receive compensation for these expenses, you may need to hire a knowledgeable attorney at Zinda Law Group.

Frequently Asked Questions

After being involved in an accident involving a spinal cord injury, you may be left asking many questions. Below are frequently asked questions regarding car accidents and subsequent spinal cord injuries:

Can you file a lawsuit for injuries to the spine after a car crash?

The short answer to this question is yes, you can file a lawsuit for injuries to the spine following a car crash. In order to do so, however, you must be able to show that one or more persons or entities are responsible for the accident and your injuries. Call Zinda Law Group today to discuss your case. We can help you determine whether you should file a lawsuit for your car accident and resulting physical pain, emotional distress, and property damage.

Can a car accident cause a spinal cord injury?

Yes, car accidents can cause spinal cord injuries; in fact, the Mayo Clinic has reported that auto and motorcycle accidents are the leading cause of spinal cord injuries each year in the United States. Thus, if you are suffering from a back or neck injury after a car accident, contact a medical professional immediately.  

What happens to your spine after a car accident?

During a car accident, the spinal cord may twist or bend, damaging it. Additionally, the spinal cord could be damaged from the victim colliding with a hard surface, such as the pavement after being propelled from the vehicle.

How do you know if you have a spinal cord injury?

Spinal cord injuries may present with varying signs and symptoms, including altered ability to feel heat or cold, difficulty breathing, and loss of bowel or bladder control. Emergency signs and symptoms include extreme back or neck pain, paralysis in any part of the body, or difficulty walking. If you have suffered significant trauma to the head or neck, always seek immediate medical attention, as you may have endured a spinal cord injury.

If you have any other questions regarding these injuries, or if you have been involved in a car accident and have endured a spinal cord injury, call a Zinda Law Group personal injury attorney today at (800) 863 5312 to set up your free initial consultation. You do not have to worry about paying us anything unless we are able to win you compensation in your case. That is our No Win, No Fee Guarantee. 

Proving Damages in a Brain Injury Case

Last updated on: November 30, 2022

When thinking about injuries resulting from something like a workplace accident or a fender-bender, most people’s minds might jump to a broken wrist or a bit of whiplash. While these sorts of injuries are no joke, there are, unfortunately, many more serious injuries that can occur, such as brain injury. Brain injuries can have long-lasting consequences for an accident victim and their family. If you have suffered a brain injury stemming from an accident caused by another person, then you may be able to work with experienced brain injury lawyers to seek compensation for your injuries.

If you or a loved one has suffered a brain injury, contact the brain injury law group specialists at Zinda Law Group at (888) 568-4342 for a free consultation.

How Can I Prove a Traumatic Brain Injury?

In any personal injury case, you must be able to show that you actually have suffered some sort of injury. This injury, and the effects of it, is ultimately what you are seeking to be compensated for. Proving a traumatic brain injury can present more challenges than something like a cut or gash wound, because the external markers of those injuries are readily apparent. TBIs, on the other hand, may present no readily apparent physical signs and can require further analysis.

Establish a Duty

The first step in establishing liability for an injury is to show that the person against whom the claim is filed owed a duty of care to act in a certain way. For example, if your claim is against a doctor for medical malpractice, there are regulations that govern how doctors complete their work with their patients. For a case involving an automobile accident, there are laws that drivers are required to follow to keep everyone on the road safe. Establishing this duty is critical because if someone was under no duty to act a certain way, then they cannot be held legally liable for causing your injuries.

Give a Causal Link

After establishing what the duty of the other party was, the next step is to establish a causal link between the breach of that duty and the injury that you ultimately suffered. For example, driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol is a violation of the general duty that drivers have. However, just because a drunk driver was involved in your car accident doesn’t necessarily mean that they will be liable for all of the injuries that resulted from that accident. There needs to be a causal link between their intoxication and the injuries that you ended up sustaining. 

You, Before and After Brain Injury

Because brain injuries can be difficult to see visually, one of the ways that you can establish the impact of your brain injury would be to show what you were like before and after the injury. One of the things that separates brain injuries from other categories of injuries is that they can actually lead to changes in the victim’s personality or emotional regulation ability. Because of this, proof of the impact of your injury can come in the form of testimony from close friends or family members who can talk about the changes that they have noticed in you.

Elements Needed to prove Negligence in a Brain Injury Claim

Prove Duty was Violated

Again, any brain injury claim will begin with proving that there was a duty, and that that duty was violated. Without this critical step, there cannot be a successful brain injury claim. Your brain injury attorney may be able to analyze the facts of your case and help determine whether a legal duty existed, and then whether it was violated in a way that could entitle you to compensation.

Medical History and Records

Providing your medical history and records is another crucial step to a successful brain injury case. Because brain injuries are entirely internal, discerning how serious they are and what the symptoms that can be associated with them often requires the help of a medical professional who can analyze medical history and records.

Your Support System

The people closest to you, while they likely don’t have the medical expertise to be able to talk in-depth about what kind of injury you suffered, do have first-hand knowledge of the person that you were before and after suffering your injury. This knowledge could potentially be an important factor in establishing how severe the impact of your injuries has been on your life.

Employment and Educational Records

Employment and educational records can potentially serve a couple of different purposes in a TBI case. Employment records can be used to help value compensation after the injury because they can show what a victim was making before an accident if they are no longer able to work. Educational records are another way to demonstrate what the impact has been on the victim. If they are no longer able to go to school like they were doing before an accident, then this could be evidence that the impact on their lives was very severe.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Considered Brain Damage?

An important first step in understanding what sort of a claim you might have and exactly how to go about pursuing it will be determining what type of brain injury you have. There are many types of brain injuries, but they can generally be sorted into two categories.

Mild Traumatic Brain Injury

Mild traumatic brain injuries are less severe.  According to the Mayo Clinic, there are a few different symptoms that might be markers of a mild traumatic brain injury. Physical symptoms include minor loss of consciousness, dizziness or disorientation, headache, nausea or vomiting, fatigue or drowsiness, among others. There are also other sensory or cognitive symptoms of mild traumatic brain injuries, which include sensitivity to light or sound, sensory problems like ringing in the ears or a bad taste in the mouth, and mood changes or mood swings.

Though this category of TBI seems like it may be less dangerous because of the term “mild,” it is critical to contact a medical professional and fully address the issue if these symptoms persist. Mild traumatic brain injuries may actually present a more dangerous situation to their victims because their symptoms can be so benign. For example, a victim who suffers from a headache after their accident might not realize that this symptom is connected to a brain injury. This may result in them not obtaining proper medical attention.  Some symptoms may not become apparent for days, or even weeks, after the accident.

If you or a loved one has suffered from a mild traumatic brain injury, consider partnering with Zinda Law Group’s dedicated team of mild traumatic brain injury lawyers.

Learn More: Traumatic Brain Injury Symptoms

Moderate-Severe Traumatic Brain Injury

As the name might suggest, moderate-severe traumatic brain injuries are more serious. As such, the accidents that cause them tend to be a bit more severe. While there can be delayed symptoms in the case of a moderate-severe traumatic brain injury, they generally appear sooner after an accident, typically within the first few hours to days.

Physical symptoms of these sorts of injuries include loss of consciousness lasting for several minutes to hours, a constant headache or a headache that progressively becomes worse, convulsions or seizures, inability to awaken from sleep, and a host of others that can be found here. Certain cognitive and mental symptoms can accompany moderate to severe injuries, such as profound confusion, agitation or other aggressive behavior, slurred speech, and comas or other disorders of consciousness.

Causes of Traumatic Brain Injuries

While a traumatic injury can occur anywhere, most injuries will typically fall into one of the following categories.

Falls

The most common cause of traumatic brain injuries, particularly in older Americans and children, is falling. This can be falling off of a ladder while doing home repairs, slipping in the tub while getting in or out, or simply tripping while taking a walk. A traumatic brain injury lawyer may be able to help when another person causes your fall. For example, a workplace accident can occur if you trip as a result of an unsafe condition in your office, or you may have a product liability claim if you fell due to the defective manufacturing of a ladder.

Read More: Wet and Slippery Floor Injuries

Motor Vehicle Collisions

Brain injuries frequently occur in accidents involving:

Brain injuries can occur during the initial collision or when colliding with the ground. Contacting an attorney after your vehicle collision may be the best way to hold the other party accountable for your injuries and seek the compensation that you are entitled to.

Read More: Evaluating Damages for Brain Injuries

Workplace Accidents

Certain workplaces are more prone to cause a traumatic brain injury than others. For example, if you work at a construction site or in a factory, then you might be at risk for sustaining a TBI on the job. These sorts of accidents can occur as a result of malfunctioning equipment, such as a piece of machinery that comes loose and hits you on the worksite, or human error, such as a co-worker swinging a hammer without checking to make sure that they were free and clear to do so.

Can You Measure Brain Damage?

There are certain ways that doctors attempt to measure brain damage. For example, as discussed previously, brain damage can be sorted into three major categories—mild, moderate, and severe. There may be other scales and metrics that doctors can use to measure the extent of brain damage, but possibly the most important measure to you is just how much the injury has impacted your quality of life.

What is a Brain Injury Claim Worth?

There is no surefire way to value a brain injury without speaking with an experienced brain injury attorney. That being said, the economic value of a brain injury will generally depend on two major factors—fault and the extent of your injuries. The amount of fault associated with each party will determine what who is liable for what, and the extent of your injuries will determine what the economic value of the losses are.

If you have suffered a TBI, you do not want to try to take on the insurance companies alone. Our experienced attorneys may be able to guide you through the process and help you fight for a fair settlement. If not, they may be able to fight for you until you do.

If you or a loved one has suffered a brain injury, contact the brain injury law group specialists at Zinda Law Group at (888) 378-1314 for a free consultation.

What To Do After A Motorcycle Accident: 7 Crucial Steps

Last updated on: November 30, 2022

Motorcycle accidents are common, but they can be extremely serious. The consequences of motorcycle accidents can be more severe than car accidents because the motorcyclist has less protection on his bike than a driver in a car is in the event of a collision. If you are involved in a motorcycle accident, preserving your health and safety is the most important thing, and you will also want to do what you can to ensure that a future accident claim is not compromised.

Legal representation can greatly increase your chances of success with a personal injury claim. If you or a loved one has been injured in a motorcycle accident, contact the lawyers at Zinda Law Group today for a free case consultation.

1. Safety First

The most important thing with any auto accident is to remain as safe as possible. If anyone is injured, call for medical attention immediately. Remain at the scene of the accident while making sure to move to a safe place where passing cars can see you and the terrain is reliable.   

Even if no one appears injured at the scene of the accident, you should still seek medical attention, especially if the accident involved a motorcycle because of the increased probability of injury. You can be injured without outwardly bleeding or losing consciousness. If anyone is seriously injured and needs immediate attention, explain the situation to the emergency dispatcher and follow their instructions while you wait for help to arrive—and never move someone against the instructions of medical personnel.

2. Call the Police

Regardless of whether or not an ambulance is called to the scene, you should also call the police. A police presence at an accident will provide an objective assessor who can document the scene, speak to the parties involved, and provide facts if they are needed later in a lawsuit. Be sure to get a copy of the police report.

3. Document the Scene

Be sure to gather all the information you can that would be useful to demonstrate the circumstances and facts of the accident. This includes pictures of the scene of the accident, including the damages to any vehicles involved, and any road or weather conditions that might have contributed. If you are receiving medical care, you should contact a friend or family member who can come to the scene and document the situation for you.

4. Exchange Information

Don’t forget to exchange insurance information with the other driver or drivers involved in the car accident. It is likely your insurance will have to be in contact with theirs.

When communicating with a driver who was involved in an accident with you, emotions may be running high. An auto accident is a frightening situation to be placed in, and one or both parties may feel that the other is to blame, or be angry at the other party. It is important not to be belligerent or lose your temper—not only is that not going to be productive in the long run, but remaining calm will also prevent you from saying anything you regret.

Do not sign anything presented to you by the other party in the accident without first consulting with a lawyer, and do not assign or take blame in your conversation. You may think you are just verbally trying to work through what happened in the moments leading up to the accident, or trying to pacify the other driver in the moment, but admitting fault even in passing could be disastrous for your claim.

Anything you say about the circumstances of the accident could be used in some way to discredit your claim, so stick only to the most necessary facts without adding details that could be used to throw doubt on your argument later. For example, don’t say, things like “It could happen to anybody, I could barely see in all this fog, too,” or “I might have stopped short because my GPS distracted me.” Statements like this, even if you aren’t trying to indicate that the accident was your fault, could later be used to imply that your actions were what caused the accident and not the other driver.

5. Get Medical Attention if Injured 

It is always a good idea to get medical attention at the scene of the collision if you were involved in a motorcycle accident. However, even if you have decided not to call medical services to the scene of the accident, you should go to the doctor as soon as possible after the accident to make sure you are not suffering from any conditions as a result of the accident.

This is important because some conditions, including very serious ones like concussions, do not always become apparent immediately after an accident but could have extremely dangerous consequences if left untreated. It is also good practice, if you end up needing compensation for accident-related injuries, to have them diagnosed as soon as possible, because an insurance company seeking to lessen your claim may argue that you received your injuries in a way separate from the accident if they are diagnosed a significant amount of time after the accident occurred.

6. Keep Thorough Records

Just as it is important to document everything at the scene of the accident, it is important to document the aftermath of the accident as well. Be sure to retain documentation of all the medical care that you receive and any diagnoses you receive from your doctor. In addition, make sure you document the damages that have occurred to your vehicle and anything you paid in order to repair it.

This documentation is very important in determining compensation for the accident—you will want to establish why you are asking for the damages that you are asking for by demonstrating all of the consequences of the accident and what they cost. This also extends to things you might not immediately think of but are still consequences of the accident, such as having to call out of work and losing wages.

7. Consult With a Lawyer

While this is the last step on this list, you should contact a lawyer as soon as possible after an accident. Doing so can make things such as documenting your circumstances easier—your lawyer can tell you anything you might not realize you have to keep track of. In addition, the statute of limitations for accident claims varies from state to state, but can be as low as one single year in some parts of the country, so the sooner you contact a lawyer, the sooner he can begin the process of pursuing your claim.

Need Help? Contact Zinda Law Group Today

Motorcycle accidents are common, but serious, capable of causing a lot of damages to your life—not just from injury, but from repairs, loss of wages, and possibly even emotional damage from a traumatic experience. You deserve to be able to pursue recovery for your injuries and to give your case the best possible chance of succeeding, and that requires competent legal representation.

At Zinda Law Group, our experienced motorcycle accident attorneys have recovered compensation for numerous clients. While obtaining an attorney may seem daunting or expensive, at Zinda Law Group, their No-Win, No-Fee Guarantee promises that you will not pay anything unless you receive a settlement.

What To Do if Your Lyft Gets in an Accident: 4 Crucial Steps

Last updated on: November 30, 2022

The advent of ridesharing apps like Lyft and Uber has changed transportation, making it simple to get a ride just by navigating an app. Lyft is now extremely common. But Lyft drivers aren’t immune from car accidents, and it’s very possible a driver you find yourself involved in an accident with is driving for Lyft.

Any car accident claim can be complicated, but when a huge corporation is involved as well as the two parties involved in the accident, things can get even more complex. Legal representation can help you navigate this situation effectively and make a big difference in the success of your car accident claim. If you or a loved one has been injured in a car accident involving a Lyft, contact Zinda Law Group today for a free case consultation.

1. Contact Police and Medical Attention

The most important thing in any auto accident is the safety of those involved. Make sure that you and any other occupants in your vehicle are not in need of immediate medical attention. If anyone is, call 911 and explain the situation to the dispatcher, following their instructions until help arrives. Get out of the car if it is safe to do so, and make sure that everyone is in a safe area away from passing cars or other dangerous situations.

If no one is injured, you should still call the police to request an officer come to the scene. Have the officer create a report of the crash. The observations of a police officer can be a valuable resource in pursuing a claim later, because he will document his impression of the scene and get information from the individuals involved.

2. Document the Accident

While a police officer will make a report, you should not rely on the police to document the accident for you. You can still document the accident yourself by taking pictures of the damage to both cars, the scene of the accident, and any environmental factors that might have influenced what happened. Be sure to also get the contact information of anyone around who was a witness to the accident.

Remember that documenting the accident does not just extend to the immediate aftermath of it. Be sure to have records of any of the ways your life is impacted by the accident, such as any medical treatments you have to receive, repair bills from vehicle damage, or lost wages from time off of work. Having records of all of these things will be helpful when calculating your damages to pursue compensation for them.

3. Seek Medical Care

Even if you did not need medical attention at the scene of the accident, it is important to visit the doctor afterwards to make sure you are not injured. This is important firstly for health reasons: there are some very serious injuries, such as concussions, which can be overlooked when they first occur but which can be life-threatening if allowed to persist without treatment.

There is also a practical reason to see a doctor as soon as possible after you are in a car accident—it gives you a better chance of pursuing any bills for medical treatment with a personal injury claim. In a personal injury claim seeking compensation for injuries incurred in a car accident, the plaintiff must prove that their injuries were caused by the accident (which was caused by the actions of the defendant). The longer you wait to be diagnosed with any possible injuries, the more difficult it is to prove that your injuries were caused by the car accident and not anything else that happened in the time between the accident and your doctor’s visit—something the opposing party’s attorney is likely to argue.

4. Consult An Attorney

It is always a good idea to contact an attorney if you are considering pursuing a damages claim after a car accident, but it becomes even more important when you have gotten into a car accident with a Lyft driver. Lyft has different policies and interacts with the law differently than a more straightforward accident between two individuals.

For example, Lyft classifies their drivers as independent contractors, not as employees, and so Lyft is unlikely to be held liable for a car accident in the same way a company might be if their employee got into an accident driving a company truck. In addition, Lyft does provide supplemental insurance to their drivers, provided the driver had his app in drive mode when the accident occurred, but the company has different practices depending on the circumstances of the accident. If the accident occurred with drive mode on but no passengers were in the Lyft and the Lyft was not en route to pick one up, up to $100,000 per accident could be authorized for injuries; if there was a passenger in the Lyft or the driver was heading to pick one up, insurance could cover up to $1,000,000.

In addition, Lyft has extensive legal representation. In order to begin the recovery process, you will have to report the accident to Lyft, but you should be careful when you do so—you do not want to damage your claim by saying something detrimental to it, but speaking with Lyft is like speaking with a third party insurance investigator: the employee will be trained to encourage you to admit fault and say things that could be used against you.

When you talk to a lawyer, they will be able to navigate the complexities of dealing with Lyft so you don’t have to figure out the nuances of their terms and conditions alone. Speaking to a lawyer will also allow you to begin your claim as soon as possible, which is very important because car accident claims are subject to statutes of limitation, which can be as short as one year in some states.  

Need Help? Contact Zinda Law Group Today

Trying to pursue compensation after a car accident involving Lyft can seem like a daunting task. Instead of just dealing with an individual, you are dealing with an individual as well as a multi-million dollar company and all of their complex policies. But you do not have to take this on alone: the experienced lawyers at Zinda Law Group have obtained compensation for numerous car accident victims.

At Zinda Law Group, you don’t need to worry about the uncertainty or expense of great legal representation. Zinda Law Group has a No-Win, No-Fee Guarantee, meaning that you pay nothing unless you receive a settlement in your case. Contact Zinda Law Group today for a free case consultation.

What to Do if Injured on Private Property?

Last updated on: November 30, 2022

Property owners have a legal obligation to ensure their premises are reasonably safe for visitors and to address any potential hazards that may arise. However, property owners are not liable for all injuries that occur on their property.

For example, if you are trespassing on the property, the property owner may not be liable if you are injured. To pursue a premise liability case, the injuries must have been sustained in an accident, and the cause of the accident must have been an unaddressed hazardous condition on the property. In most states, the property owner must have known of the hazard or reasonably should have known of its existence. This means the hazard which caused the accident should have been discovered by a property owner taking reasonable precautions to ensure the safety of their property.

In other words, if someone were to drop a container of liquid in front of the victim, causing them to slip minutes later, the property owner may not be liable: it is not reasonable that they would be aware of the spill immediately. However, if the spill occurred some time earlier and no steps have been taken to clean it or warn of its presence, the property owner may be liable for injuries it causes.

If you have recently suffered an injury on someone else’s property, you should contact a premises liability lawyer to help you seek compensation for your injuries and other expenses. Call the slip and fall attorneys from Zinda Law Group at (888) 485-5228 for a free consultation. If we cannot reach a favorable result in your case, you will not owe us anything.

First Steps After Being Injured on Private Property

Seek Medical Attention

The first thing you should do after a slip and fall accident is to immediately seek medical attention, even if no injuries are immediately apparent. Some injuries may not be noticeable at first, but may still be serious, such as internal injuries. This ensures you receive the care that you need, and it provides documentation of the injuries you received as a result of your accident.

Report the Accident

It is important that you report the accident as soon as possible after it occurs. If you are in a store or place of business, report the accident to the owner or manager. Workplace accidents should be immediately reported to your manager or supervisor. You should also make sure an accident report is filed regarding your incident.

Document Evidence

You should collect and document as much evidence surrounding your accident as possible. Take photos or videos of your injuries as well as of the site of the accident, including its surroundings. Be sure to collect the contact information of anyone who may have witnessed the accident.

Consult a Premises Liability Lawyer

If you have been injured due to a slip and fall, you should contact an attorney. An attorney may help you investigate the accident and pursue a slip and fall claim to seek compensation for your injuries.

Learn More: Why Hiring a Lawyer Will Help Your Case

Steps Required to Prove Your Case

Duty of Care to Keep the Property Safe

The first step in any personal injury case is to establish that the person who you are claiming is responsible for your injuries had a legal duty to act in a certain way. When dealing with injuries on private property, the duty for the property owner is typically to ensure that their property is safe and that dangers are marked well. The exact duty will depend on what kind of property the owner has and what kind of visitor the victim was, but the general duty is to keep things safe for those who might enter.

Damages Related to the Injuries

Next, it is critical to be able to show that the damages that you are seeking are related to the injuries that you sustained after being injured on private property. If your injuries are actually unrelated to what happened on the property, then you won’t be able to seek compensation for those particular injuries.

Breach of Duty of Care

After establishing what the duty of care was for the property owner, you must then be able to show that they breached that duty. For example, if you can show that a property owner must have the proper signage for a given dangerous condition, then in order to file a successful lawsuit, you must be able to factually prove that that signage did not exist.

Injuries Related to the Breach

Finally, your injuries must be related to the breach of duty that you have shown on the part of the property owner. Not every injury that occurs on someone else’s property is an injury that can be addressed through a personal injury lawsuit. The injuries that you are seeking compensation for must be directly related to the breach that you have shown on the part of the property owner.

Can I Sue Someone If I Was Hurt on Their Private Property?

The short answer to this question is yes—you may be able to sue somebody if you were hurt on their private property. However, not every injury that occurs on someone else’s property is going to be appropriate for a lawsuit. As discussed in the last section, you must be able to show that the property owner shirked some responsibility that they had in relation to the condition of their property, and subsequently that this breach is the thing that ultimately ended up causing your injuries. 

There are a lot of factors that go into deciding whether to file a private property lawsuit, and then that go into making that lawsuit successful. Speaking with an experienced personal injury lawyer in your area may be the best way to determine what decisions you should make going forward.

Business Liability for Personal Injuries

When you enter a shop to buy an item or service, you generally expect that the store owner is keeping things in a safe condition for those who might enter. This expectation is reflected in the law as well. Invitees, or those who are on property for a business purpose, are owed the highest duty of care under the law, which means business owners need to be very careful to maintain things safely for their customers. If they violate this duty of care, then you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries.

Premises Liability Laws for Injuries on Private Property

There are three main classifications of people when it comes to determining premises liability.  Each classification will require the landowner to exercise a different duty of care.  The three main types are invitees, licensees, and trespassers.

Invitees

Invitees are those that are invited onto the premises for a business purpose at a benefit to the property owner.  These include shoppers at a grocery store, clients in an office building, tenants entering the lobby of their apartment building, or diners in a restaurant.  Invitees are owed the highest degree of care.

Licensees

Licensees are those that enter onto the premises for other reasons that are not business or commercial related.  Licensees are social guests.  These include friends and family members attending a social gathering such as a birthday party or door-to-door salespeople.  Licenses are owed the second highest degree of care. 

Trespasser

A trespasser is a person who is not authorized to be on the property.  In Florida, there is generally no duty owed to a trespasser.  This means that a property owner will not need to warn or make the property safe for those not authorized to be on the property.  Sometimes a trespasser becomes known and, in these cases, the property owner may owe a minimal degree of care.

Private vs Public Property

Private property is property that is owned by a private entity, whether that be one person or a business operation. Public property, on the other hand, is property that is owned by the government. Because there are many different government agencies operating in a given area, the first step will be to determine who, exactly, is in charge of a given piece of property.

Many states provide immunity to their government agencies and employees, which means it can be more difficult to file a successful lawsuit against a government entity than a private person. However, there are some exceptions to this rule. For example, if a government entity was given notice of a hazardous situation on their property and failed to do anything about it within a reasonable amount of time, then it is possible that they may be liable for injuries caused by that situation.

Understanding How an Attorney With our Firm Can Help Your Case

At Zinda Law Group, we have an experienced team of personal injury lawyers ready to help you seek the maximum compensation you may be entitled to after being injured on someone else’s property. Whether you were injured in a slip and fall accident or another type of premises liability accident, Zinda Law Group may be able to help you pursue compensation by handling your claim and any potential personal injury lawsuit.

Our attorneys can handle your case, allowing you to focus on recovering from any injuries suffered in your fall or other accident. We have years of experience helping other victims of various premises liability accidents and will put this experience to work pursuing your claim.

Call (888) 436-2443 today for a free consultation with one of our slip and fall injury lawyers. You will not pay anything unless we can win your case. That’s our No Win, No Fee Guarantee.

Who Will Pay My Bills If I’m Injured in a Lyft Accident?

Last updated on: November 30, 2022

Ridesharing apps such as Uber and Lyft have become a part of everyday life for many individuals, and the increase of rideshare drivers on the road makes it more likely that you may find yourself in an accident involving a rideshare. Unlike an accident involving another private citizen driver, there are some unique complications involved in being in an accident with a Lyft.

When dealing with large corporations with various policies on accidents, having legal counsel gives you a much better chance of succeeding with your claim. If you or a loved one has been in a car accident involving a Lyft, contact the lawyers at Zinda Law Group today for a free case consultation.

Who Pays For Your Bills If You’re Injured in a Lyft Accident?

There are many different laws about whether employees or employers are liable for things that employees do while on the job. However, Lyft drivers are not classified as employees but as independent contractors, making it easy for Lyft to avoid liability in most cases. Because of this, if you are injured in an accident with a Lyft driver it is likely you will be dealing with the insurance of the Lyft driver.

However, Lyft does have insurance for its drivers that supplements the insurance that the driver personally has. If a Lyft driver is driving with his app turned on when the accident occurs, this supplemental insurance will be applied to the accident—but if the Lyft driver does not have his Lyft app turned on, he is just treated like any other driver and only his insurance will be involved.

Does It Make a Difference if You’re a Passenger, Another Driver or Pedestrian?

No matter if you are a passenger, another driver, or a pedestrian, if you are involved in an accident with a Lyft driver, you are able to seek compensation for your injuries according to Lyft insurance policies. If the Lyft driver does not have drive mode activated, only his insurance will be used; if drive mode is on, Lyft’s policies may be supplemented. In either case, if you were injured by a driver you can seek compensation.

Should Lyft or Their Driver Be Liable for Your Injuries?

One important fact of the case is whether or not the Lyft driver has his Lyft app turned on driver mode when the accident happens, because otherwise Lyft will not be involved, as the driver was involved in the accident in his “off the clock” time from his job. But even when the app is on, this will only implicate Lyft’s insurance policy because Lyft classifies their drivers as independent contractors and not employees. It is unlikely that Lyft itself will have any liability for the actions of their driver.

Lyft will still want to know about the accident. If you have been hit by a Lyft driver, you can and should report the accident to Lyft on their Help Page. However, take caution when you do this, because speaking to Lyft is like speaking to an insurance company following an accident—the representative you are speaking to is trained to protect the interests of the company, not your best interests, and is listening for an admission of fault on your part or something else that can be used to deny coverage. Consider speaking to your lawyer before speaking to Lyft, or having your lawyer report the accident to Lyft himself.

How Lyft’s Insurance Policies Work

The supplemental insurance limits on Lyft are different if the Lyft driver had a passenger in his car or was on his way to pick up a passenger when the accident occurred. If the Lyft driver is driving with his app turned on but has no passenger and is not driving to pick up a passenger (he might have just dropped off a passenger, or is driving waiting to accept an assignment), the supplemental insurance limit is $50,000 per person in the accident with a limit of $100,000 total, and a $25,000 maximum for property damage. However, if there is a Lyft passenger in the car or the Lyft driver was on his way to pick up a passenger, Lyft’s supplemental insurance is higher, and the limit is $1 million.

Need Help? Contact Zinda Law Group Today

Being involved in a car accident with a Lyft driver can be even more complex than an ordinary car accident because there is a large corporation involved. It may be difficult to gather the facts of the case that could end up making a big difference, such as whether or not the Lyft driver was in drive mode or heading to pick up a passenger. Hiring experienced legal counsel will ensure that your claim will have the best chance of success.

At Zinda Law Group, our car accident attorneys have recovered compensation for numerous clients. Furthermore, the uncertainty of the legal system is not a prohibitive factor in obtaining legal representation with Zinda Law Group because of their No-Win, No-Fee Guarantee, which means that unless you receive a settlement, you will pay nothing in legal costs.

What to Do After a Car Accident

Last updated on: November 30, 2022

Secure Children, Pets, Seniors and the Disabled

Be careful not to cause any additional injuries to the other people in your vehicle. Do not leave children, pets, seniors, or disabled adults in a locked hot car after an accident. Alternatively, do not take any of these members out of the car if it is not safe for you to do so.

If there are children in car seats, do not remove them from the seats after a crash. You could potentially disturb and worsen injuries that you are not aware of. Allow the medical professionals to attend to the children’s injuries.

Check for Injuries and Move to a Safe Area

Car accidents can inflict many different types of injuries onto drivers and passengers alike. These injuries can vary in intensity, permanency, and frequency; some are invisible to the naked eye. Left untreated, some injuries can develop into life-threatening conditions or permanent disabilities.

Prompt treatment for any kind of injury is crucial, as many injuries can greatly affect the way your body moves and functions. If you or a loved one was injured in a car accident, it is imperative that you seek medical attention as soon as possible. A medical professional may be able to help you mitigate the overall effects of your injuries.

Even if you do not have any apparent injuries, you should still visit a healthcare professional to avoid developing subsequent injuries later. A healthcare professional will be able to inspect your body and assure you that you have no serious injuries.

In addition to the obvious health benefits, visiting a healthcare professional may also have some legal use as well. A doctor will create an official medical report of your injuries. If you later wish to pursue your legal options, you may be able to use these medical documents as proof to the court of your injuries.

It is important to your claim that you demonstrate that you have made a good faith effort to recover and address your injuries as quickly as possible. If you were injured in a car accident and need help gathering evidence that will strengthen your case for seeking compensation for your injuries, contact a personal injury lawyer; they will be able to give you reasonable advice for what to do after a wreck. Once hired, a knowledgeable car accident lawyer will be able to help you assess your injuries accurately and file a claim accordingly.

Call the Police

One of the first steps in any car crash is to inform the authorities of the crash. This ensures that officers and first responders will respond to the crash and that you receive treatment for any injuries. You should provide as much detail to the police as possible about the other driver, including the vehicle they were driving and any witnesses to the crash

Talking to the Other Driver

If the other driver appeared to have road rage when the accident occurred, be careful while talking to the other driver. Try not to be angry or apologetic toward the driver. If the driver asks about whether anyone in your vehicle was hurt, remember that you do not truly know the injuries you sustained until you have met with your doctor.

Exchange Information

After you have confirmed that everyone is safe, exchange contact information with the other party, being sure to get the other driver’s name, phone number, address, driver’s license number, and insurance information. If there are any eyewitnesses, try to get similar information from them, for witnesses can play a key role in proving your claim if your case proceeds to litigation.

Notify Your Auto Insurance Company

Notify your insurance company and give a basic account of the accident. Avoid making any official statements regarding fault for the accident. Your insurance adjuster may seem helpful and friendly, but it is his or her job to make the insurance company profit by reducing the amount the insured receives.

Provide the insurance company with the necessary documents and refamiliarize yourself with the policy. Speak with a car accident attorney if you have concerns about your insurance policy.

Decide Whether to File a Claim

If the damage to your vehicle and your body is serious, you may consider filing a claim against the other driver. However, you should not begin litigation without a strong idea of the value of your claim.

A lawyer can help you calculate the value of your claim. A lawyer can also save you precious time, money, and energy by letting you know if your claim is not worth pursuing.

Notify the Department of Motor Vehicles

You may need to let the DMV know about the accident. State laws vary about which crashes must be reported. Usually, there is a minimum amount of vehicle damage or bodily injury that requires the accident to be reported.

Gather Potential Evidence

Physical evidence is extremely important in accident and injury cases, and many courts appreciate plaintiffs who can present physical proof and evidence to support their claim. When you call the police after a car accident, the responding police officer will likely draft a written accident report, which is important because it documents when, where, and how the accident happened. After the officer creates the report, ask how you can obtain a copy later, when it becomes available.

After an accident, do your best to document the scene as soon as possible and as thoroughly as possible on your own, and avoid leaving out any essential details. The best way to document the scene of an accident is to take photos or videos with your mobile device. Taking notes and describing the accident in written form can also help you recall the specifics of the accident later on in the litigation process.

Also, keep a detailed list of any expenses related to the accident; expenses can include medical bills, repair orders, or lost wages. If you were injured in a car accident and are uncertain about what to keep and what to throw away, speak with an attorney who can help you decide exactly what to do after a car wreck.

Watch What You Say

Liability allocation is an important step in car accident claims. In many states, the driver responsible for the accident is liable for all resulting injuries, costs, and damages. If you were involved in a car accident, it is important that you avoid accepting fault for the collision without first consulting with a legal professional.

At the initial collision scene, you may not be aware of what was going on inside the other vehicle, what traffic laws the other driver might have broken, or what other circumstances might have transpired in the seconds or minutes leading up to the crash. A subsequent investigation may later reveal that the other driver failed to yield to you, was texting at the time of the incident, or ran a stop sign. Unfortunately, if you already accepted fault for the accident, you may have a difficult time pursuing damages.

Avoid getting into lengthy conversations about what happened after an accident, for these conversations can lead to unprovoked confessions or admissions that do not necessarily reflect the facts of the accident. You must also avoid giving statements to insurance investigators or the family members of the other motorist, especially before you have a chance to retain counsel. While you are obligated to cooperate with the police and give any necessary information, you are not usually required to go into detailed conversations about who was legally responsible.

Avoiding these conversations can help you preserve the sanctity of your claim. If you were injured and want to discuss your prospects for getting recovery, or if you need help deciding what to do after a car accident, contact a for help. An attorney who is working for you can evaluate your claim and help you seek the maximum compensation available to you.

Don’t Make Deals About Damages Payments

Do not accept a payment from the other driver before filing an insurance claim or fully assessing the damage you suffered. You might accept an amount much too small to cover your expenses from the crash, and you could bar yourself from further recovery.

Contact Your Car Accident Lawyer

Dealing with the legal consequences of a car accident can be exhausting. Insurance companies can be difficult to handle, especially if they do not want to compensate you completely for your damages. A collision attorney knows how to speak and negotiate with the insurance companies, potentially making the process go much more smoothly for all involved.

Victims can recover from an accident more quickly when they win compensation. If you are interested in potentially getting the highest compensation possible for your damages, an attorney may be able to help you. Once hired, a professional accident attorney will be able to help you determine fault, navigate the filing process, assess your damages, and negotiate with the involved insurance companies, taking your claim to court if a fair settlement with them cannot be reached.

Frequently Asked Questions

What happens to your body after a car accident?

After an accident, you may experience a rush of adrenaline. The adrenaline, while it can give you the strength to complete the tasks listed above, can prevent you from feeling the extent of your injuries until later. Visit a doctor soon after the accident to ensure that you have not experienced a head or spinal injury.

What is the first thing you do after a crash?

There are many things that you can do after an accident to help lessen the burden of the collision. Regardless of the type of accident, involved drivers should always first check to see if anyone is hurt, even in minor fender benders; always check yourself and your passengers first. After you have ensured that the people within your vehicle are safe, you can then move to check on the people in the other involved cars; if anyone is hurt, immediately call for medical assistance.

10 Things You Should Do After a Truck Accident

Last updated on: November 30, 2022

Being in any car accident can cause stress, but being in an accident with a truck can be even more serious due to their size and power. Truck accidents can cause significant damage to your vehicle and in the worst case, seriously injure someone involved.

But while your emotions are probably running high after a truck accident, it’s important to take proper precautions directly after an accident in order to protect yourself and any claim that you may later decide to bring regarding the accident. If you or a loved one has been injured in a truck accident, contact the lawyers at Zinda Law Group today for a free case consultation.

Report the Collision to the Proper Authorities

When you are in a truck accident you should always call the police. If anyone involved in the accident has been injured, you should also request an ambulance.

Write Down Contact Information for Witnesses

In a personal injury claim, the facts of the accident are immensely important because that is how the court determines who was at fault. If there were witnesses at the scene, you need to make sure you are able to get in touch with them so they can share what they saw. Get the information of anyone who saw the accident so that your lawyer can follow up with them to gather evidence for your theory of the case.

Document the Evidence at the Scene

Thoroughly document everything at the scene of the accident. Make sure to keep copies of all bills and expenses that you have to incur from the accident, including medical bills and repair bills, and that you document the damage done to your vehicle before it is repair.

In addition, make sure that you receive a copy of the police report or accident report. In general, you should have evidence of everything you do after the accident and as much evidence as you can about the circumstances of the accident—having too much evidence will never be a problem, but not having documentation of something that appears minor at the time could become a significant issue in the future.

Take Pictures

You should be taking pictures of the scene of the accident so that you document it as thoroughly as possible. This will not just be important to introduce in court as evidence that the accident happened as you are claiming it did, and that the consequences were what you are claiming they are. It also provides helpful information for your lawyer when he is creating the argument he will use to pursue compensation for you.

Your lawyer was not at the accident, and while you probably have a recollection of what happened, you are more likely to be aware of what was going on in your car than everything happening with the other party. In addition, your memory may be impacted by the stressful events. Your lawyer needs to be able to recreate the scene of the accident as throughly as possible not just to present the most accurate version of events to the court, but because any small details might be helpful to make your case as persuasive as possible.

Document Your Medical Treatment

When you file your personal injury claim, you will be asking for money for the damages you have received. When you are requesting money from another party as a result of them harming you, the court wants to see specifically what damages were suffered. Make sure that you document whatever medical treatments you received and how much they cost, so that it is clear exactly how you were harmed in your truck accident and what damages you should receive in compensation.

Seek Medical Attention

If anyone at the scene of the crash has been injured, or struck their head very hard (even if they feel fine or did not lose consciousness), they should receive medical attention as soon as possible. However, if you do not have any urgent injuries or believe you were not injured at all, you should still go to your doctor after the accident to ascertain your condition.

This is important both for health reasons and because of your claim. Some injuries do not become apparent immediately, but can still become extremely serious and sometimes life threatening if not treated promptly, such as concussions. But it is also important to receive diagnoses from your doctor as soon as possible if your injury is from an accident because in a personal injury lawsuit, the more time that has elapsed between the accident and your diagnosis will give the opposing party more ammunition to cast doubt on your assertion that you were injured in the accident involved in the lawsuit and not in another way in the intervening period.

Get Your Vehicle Appraised

The idea behind personal injury law is to put the victim in the place that he or she would have been had the accident or harm never happened to them. So if your car is totaled, that doesn’t mean that you will necessarily receive the value of your car when you bought it—you may only be able to receive the value of your car directly before the accident.

For example, if you bought your car for $30,000 and drove it for 10 years, it will not be worth $30,000 after ten years of use. If you are in an accident and your car is totaled, you will have to have your vehicle appraised to determine what the value was immediately before the accident. If the value was only $10,000, you will only be owed $10,000 in an accident suit, because the other $20,000 of value was lost over the ten years of using your car and so in the accident you only lost $10,000.

Interview Witnesses

If there were witnesses at the scene of your truck accident, ask if any of them saw what happened. Witnesses may be able to provide information about the circumstances of the accident even if they do not know exactly what occurred—they may be able to agree that a stoplight was red, or that the conditions of the road were foggy.

If a witness has information helpful to a case and your lawyer decides it would be appropriate, your lawyer may interview or even depose these witnesses later on as your case progresses, so it is important that you speak to these individuals now to determine if they have any useful information and to stay in contact with them.

Seek Help to Negotiate Early Settlement Offers

You should never sign anything at the scene of the accident or afterwards without speaking to your lawyer first to have a full understanding of the possible consequences of a settlement. This is especially important early on in the case, because you want to be sure that you have assessed all of the damages you’ve incurred from the accident.

For example, if you injure your leg in a truck accident and need surgery, you may be satisfied that an early settlement offer offers to pay for the surgery. But if the surgery is unsuccessful and your injury persists, and needs another type of management that is an ongoing expense, you will be sorry the settlement agreement was signed before you knew that this was something you had to face.

Use Caution When Discussing the Incident

Insurance companies and the opposing party or their counsel want to avoid having to compensate you for the accident by whatever means they are permitted to use. This could include disputing that your injuries are from the accident, or that they are not as severe as they are, or they could attempt to get you to admit fault in the accident.

You should never admit fault to anyone following an auto accident, even just in passing, because anything you say can be used to argue that the other party was not at fault and does not owe you compensation. Don’t just watch what you say in person, either, but be sure not to post about the incident on social media, either, for the same reason—your own statements could be used against you when pursuing a personal injury claim.

Get Help From Zinda Law Group Today

Being in a truck accident is stressful and can result in very serious consequences. Your focus should be on recovery, not on trying to handle the complexities of the legal system on your own. However, hiring a lawyer can seem expensive and complicated, especially when you don’t know what the outcome might be in court.

At Zinda Law Group, our experienced truck accident lawyers can fight for your right to compensation so you can recover from what’s happened to you. In addition, Zinda Law Group has a contingency fee structure, which means that unless you receive a favorable verdict, you will not pay anything—so you can be confident that no matter what, you won’t be paying legal fees on a lost case.  

What to Do If You’re Injured by a Drunk Driver

Last updated on: November 30, 2022

If you get injured due to the actions of another party, that party’s insurance company may ask you to sign a medical release. You have the right to refuse signing the medical release and prevent the insurance company from looking through all your medical records.  

It is understandable that after an injury, you want to move on with your life. However, if you move too quickly, you may not be able to seek maximum compensation. You have the right to negotiate your settlement and ensure you get a fair compensation amount before you accept an offer and eliminate your right to further recovery.

Because insurance companies need to make a profit, they may look to give you as little as possible for your injuries. Thus, when a claims adjuster says that your injuries are worth this much, take it with a grain of salt. Insurance claims adjusters are trained negotiators who want the best for their employer.

Therefore, insurance claims adjusters want to reduce your claim or deny your claim altogether. Remember, even though a claims adjuster may seem highly sympathetic to your case, he or she is not working for you but for the insurance company employer.

Often, a claims adjuster will want to chat with you. They may ask you questions that may seem harmless. However, they may trick you into saying that the accident was partially your fault or other statements that they may use to lessen the value of your claim.

You have the right to hire an attorney and allow him or her to talk to the insurance adjuster on your behalf. That way, you can reduce the chance of saying something that harms the strength of your claim.

Some insurance companies try to use a delaying tactic to avoid giving you compensation for your claim. For instance, in Texas, the statute of limitations requires a claimant to file a claim within two years of an accident. An insurance company in Texas may try to delay your claim by pretending to lose your paperwork or not respond to your calls.

By engaging in such tactics, the insurance company hopes that you might give up your claim or miss the deadline to file a lawsuit. Do not allow the insurance company to use such tactics on you: If such incidents occur in your claim, call a lawyer right away.

Finally, if a driver who was involved in an accident with you was not charged with a DUI, it does not mean that you no longer have a claim. Though the existence of the driver’s previous drunk driving conviction could help prove your claim, as long as there is evidence that the driver was drunk at the time of accident, a DUI conviction is not necessary.

You can use evidence of the driver’s intoxication to show that he or she was negligent and liable for your accident, even if he or she may not be criminally liable. However, if the driver was charged with DUI, then you may be eligible for punitive damages, which you may think of as additional compensation that the drunk driver owes you in additional to the civil suit compensation.

Drunk Driving Crash Statistics

Accidents resulting from drivers operating under the influence of alcohol claim approximately 30 lives per day. During 2019, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that a total of 10,142 people were killed as a result of motor vehicle accidents involving an alcohol-impaired driver. Fortunately, most auto accidents are not fatal, but injured victims benefit from consultation with an experienced personal injury lawyer who can present options which will help reduce risks such as large medical bills and lost wages. 

DUI Signs to Look for After a Car Crash

All drivers should be aware of the steps to take following an accident that involves an alcohol-impaired driver. Contacting law enforcement authorities as soon as possible after the accident is crucial, even if the accident does not appear to be serious.

It is important for law enforcement officers to respond quickly and preserve evidence at the scene—such as the driver’s BAC. Having law enforcement officers on the scene as soon as possible will also allow potential witnesses to better recall the details of the accident while it is still fresh in their minds.

Every potential witness should be encouraged to remain on the scene until law enforcement arrives. The witnesses may have noticed that the other driver was driving erratically before the crash, or the witnesses may be able to attest to the drunken driver’s behavior immediately following the crash.

If there were witnesses to the accident, you should try to get their names and contact information. If any of the witnesses took photographs or video recordings of the accident, ask them for copies. If you yourself have a camera at the scene of the accident, take some photographs of the scene.

Why a Hiring a Lawyer after Drunk Driving Accident is Important

Even if you are comfortable with the law, you may have trouble dealing with insurance companies. A personal injury lawyer should know all the hurdles insurance companies throw at claimants. Thus, if your insurance company or the other party’s insurance company is being difficult, you may want to call a lawyer.

An experienced lawyer may help you deal with the insurance companies, which are often very reluctant to provide full coverage for victims. A skilled lawyer knows the tactics of insurance companies that try to give as little as possible and may counter these tactics so that clients have a chance of seeking full compensation. Additionally, if you are unsatisfied with an insurance company’s offer, a lawyer may represent you at trial.

The advice available from experienced attorneys like those at Zinda Law Group can mean the difference between receiving minimal compensation from an insurance company or receiving fair and adequate compensation that will help alleviate your concerns over medical expenses, lost wages and motor vehicle replacement costs. If you or a loved one has been involved in an accident involving a driver who was under the influence of alcohol, call the team at Zinda Law Group toll free at (800) 836-5312 as soon as possible to ensure that you are protected and receive the compensation you truly deserve.  

If You Have Been Injured by a Drunk Driver You Can Sue the Driver for Damages

As the victim of a drunk driving accident, you are likely eligible for economic and non-economic damages. Economic damages are meant to compensate you for your financial expenses, and non-economic damages cover your pain and suffering. As mentioned earlier, you could even receive punitive damages, depending on the facts of your case.

Victim Restitution vs. Civil DUI Lawsuits

You may have heard of “victim restitution” and wondered whether it applies in your case. Victim restitution comes about in a criminal case. It is an order imposed upon the drunk driver in a DUI case, and it is brought on behalf of the state by the prosecutor.

In a civil lawsuit, the victim or the victim’s loved ones must file the lawsuit against the drunk driver privately. There are often more opportunities for compensation through a civil lawsuit.

Can Family Members of People Hit by DUI Drivers Get Compensation?

If someone in your family was hit by a driver with a DUI, you can be compensated for the emotional and financial loss you suffer. You may receive compensation in the form of funeral expenses, income loss, and loss of companionship.

Is a Drunk Driver Automatically Liable for an Accident?

Just because the person who crashed into you or your loved one was driving while intoxicated, that driver may not automatically take all the blame. The drunk driver might argue that you or your loved one was partially at fault for the accident and may try to reduce the amount of compensation you could receive. However, a driver’s intoxication generally increases the likelihood that the driver will be found responsible for an auto accident.

What’s the Average Settlement for Getting Hit by Drunk Drivers?

Since each accident is different, there is no standard average settlement for the amount you will receive from a drunk driving accident. Factors that could impact the settlement amount include your injuries, the actions of the parties involved, and how well you are able to negotiate with the insurance companies and the defendant’s attorney.

Calculating a Drunk Driving Settlement

Show that you deserve the settlement amount you are seeking by itemizing and calculating your damages. These include your medical expenses, property damage, lost wages, lost future income, estimated future medical expenses, and non-economic damages. An attorney can help ensure that you do not leave out any of the financial or emotional hardship you suffered from the accident.

Frequently Asked Questions

How can you prove impaired driving?

As mentioned before, if a driver has a previous DUI, it can be used as evidence that the driver drank and drove. However, the preferred evidence is from the accident report. That is why it is crucial to get the officer on scene as soon as possible to prove that the driver has a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) over the legal limit.

Can you get a settlement if you were hit by a drunk driver?

If you were hit by a drunk driver, you could be compensated for the injuries you suffered. Call our Zinda Law Group attorneys at (800) 836-5312 to set up your free consultation. We will help you determine the next steps and develop a legal strategy for your claim.  

Are drunk drivers are more likely to survive an alcohol related crash than sober drivers and passengers?

Studies show that people with a higher BAC are more likely to survive crashes. When a sober person is in a crash, his or her body responds by going into an emergency preservation mode. However, that preservation mode can result in the death of the victim.

When someone is intoxicated, their body is less likely to go into emergency preservation mode. Further, the higher someone’s BAC is, the more they are protected from entering emergency preservation mode. Therefore, drunk people are less likely to die in a crash.