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Archive for December, 2011
Saturday, December 31st, 2011
I fell in a Cincinnati Walmart or Krogers store can I win my personal injury is a question I hear as a personal injury lawyer. The answer to the question is it depends. It depends on whether you can prove the store was negligent and their neglence was a proximate cause of your injury. You must also show that it you were at fault that your negligence was 50% or less.
So you must be able to show that your fall was caused by some defect or hazard in or existing in the Kroger store, Walmart or other store. The defect must have been caused by the store employees or had been there long enough that the store should have found out about it and taken care of the defect. Additionally if the defect was open and obvious, the Ohio Supreme court stated, ”Where a danger is open and obvious, a landowner owes no duty of care to individuals lawfully on the premises.” Armstrong v. Best Buy Co, Inc., 99 Ohio St.3d 79, 2003-Ohio-2573, 788 N.E.2d . So if it was something plainly visible (open and obvious ) you will likely not have a case unless you can find a statutory duty to fix the problem. So an exception is in the landlord tenant situation.
As you can see it’s rather complicated . But just because you fell in a store doesn’t mean that you are entitled to recover for your injury. But certainly you could have a case depending on the facts of the situation. The one thing you should do is report your injury immediately to the store manager. Make sure they take your name and address and have them call the life sqaud. This at least starts you potential claim of correctly . An listen to what is said. many times the manager will call an employee who will make an admission that the problem was known but they just did not get around to correcting it.
As a Cincinnati personal injury lawyer I welcome your questions on slip and fall accident injury and you can call me at 621-2345 for a free consultation. you should always seek the advice of a personal injury attorney if you get hurt on someone’s premises.
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Monday, December 26th, 2011
I have a personal injury claim or have been in a car accident and would like to know , What do personal injury lawyers Do. As a personal injury lawyer I have been asked this question several times by people with a personal injury claim, usually a car accident claim.
Instead of telling you what I do I surveyed personal injury lawyers from across the country by searching for them on google. Here are some of the search terms I used:
Attorney for car accident, automobile accident attorney, auto injury lawyers, car crash lawyer, accident lawyers, injury attorneys, car accidents, personal injury lawyers, personal injury lawyer, personal injury attorney, personal injury attorneys.
The Number One Thing A personal Injury Lawyer Must Be Able To Do
The number one thing a personal injury lawyer must do is to be able to go to trial if necessary. The reason is that this is the big gun we have in our arsenal if the insurance company will not offer a fair settlement. Of course, the vast majority of cases do not go to trial, But one of the keys to this is preparing a case as if it will be going to trial so the insurance cmpany knows you mean business.
I found a personal injury lawyers web site that listed over 100 things that personal injury lawyers do . This was by Mitch Jackson and is a great comprehensive list. The initial thing is that we talk with you on the phone to see if we can help you. This is a free service. If I think I can help you I invite you to a face to face free case evaluation where we get to know each other and decide mutually if we both want to enter into a “partnership” I say this as an analogy since if I take your case it will be on a contingency fee. This means I am not paid a fee unless I recover money for you. So the more I get for you , the more my fee is. Although the goal is to help you get justice , the by product of focusing on you is a good fee for me.
So here is a partial list of some of the more important things I do and every personal injuries lawyer should do:
1. Answer all of your questions
2. Communicate with the insurance company. You no longer have to deal with them
3. Help you find competent medical care in the case of you not having medical insurance. I have a nurse case manager on staff and we can review your treatment plan and help interface with your doctor
4. Document the scene
5. Take photographs of your injuries and the area your injury occured
6. interview witnesses
7. Gather your medical records and bills
8. Gather your lost wages.
9. Gather evidence from the police such as crash reports
10 Hire experts if necessary such as accident reconstructionists.
11. Reseaarch all insurance policies including your to see if there is a source of money there for you
12 Identify who may be at fault and contact them
13. Prepare for any defenses the insurance company may throw at us
14. Advise you how to proceed with your doctor’s
15. Keep you from making mistakes that can ruin your case
16. Advise you of the value of your case
17. Review legal research as to defenses and your case value.
18 when the time is right send a complete settlement demand package to the insurance company
19 Negotiate back and forth with the insurance company always keeping you in the loop and requesting your permission to proceed on our recommendation
20 File suit if a low ball offer is made
Below are some items, Mitch Jackson, a wonderful personal injury lawyer, and others report on if the case goes to lititgation. I include this to show what an attorney for car accident, otherwise known in the broad sense as what Cincinnati personal injury lawyers may do if litgation becomes necessary. In the hustle and bustle of a serious injury law practice this does not always get communicated to the client , although we try to keep you abreast and are happy to answer and questions and take all your calls.
If Case is Not Settled and A Law Suit Needs To Be Filed
- Additional research of law and available causes of action (if needed)
- Prepare Court of Common Pleas Summons and Complaint alleging all viable causes of action
- Coordinate the filing of the Summons and Complaint with Civil Cover sheet with the clerk of the Common pleas
- Calendar all post-filing filing dates (5-10) and service on defendant and for return of Summons
- Contact and retain consulting and trial related experts
- If necessary, use investigator and/or online services to location defendant’s for service
- Review incoming Answer, Demurrer or Motion to Strike from defendant’s lawyers hired by defendant’s insurance company
- Telephone call to defense counsel to introduce ourselves and to discuss case issues and possible settlement
- Review defendants initial Form Interrogatories, Special Interrogatories, Inspection Demand, and Notice of Deposition (discovery)
- Send instructional letter to client with defendant’s initial discovery
- Calculate and calendar all dates client’s discovery responses are due
- If defendant served a Demurrer or Motion to Strike, prepare and filed Oppositions and calendar all response and hearing dates
- As required by the Code of Civil Procedure, review client’s responses to all discovery and prepare and service original verified responses to defendant’s attorney
- On behalf of client, prepare and served client’s initial discovery to defendant Interrogatories, Special Interrogatories, Request for Admissions, Demand to Produce Documents, and Notice of Deposition
- Calendar and appear at court ordered Case Management Conference
- Prepare client and attend client’s deposition at defense attorney’s office
- Take defendant’s deposition (traditional or video) at our office
- Take deposition of all important witnesses
- Review incoming Demand for Independent Medical Examination (IME) from defendant
- Special letter to client with copy of IME and coordinate final IME instructions and date
- Prepare and respond to IME with special pleading regarding certain terms and conditions
- Client appears at IME with our office either recording or videotaping examination process
- Receive and review defendant doctor’s IME report
- Receive and forward defendant’s supplemental discovery (Special Interrogatories, Request for Admissions, and Inspection Demand)
- Prepare and serve on defendant our client’s supplemental discovery (Special Interrogatories, Request for Admissions, and Inspection Demand)
- Prepare for and attend continued Case Management Conference or initial Status Conference and set trial date
- Letter to client with all mandatory dates and date of trial
- Coordinate pre-trial settlement mediation or arbitration if ordered by the court or thought useful by counsel
- Prepare mediation or arbitration briefs and documents
- Prepare client for mediation or arbitration
- Appear with client at mediation or arbitration and present case
- If case is resolved via mediation or arbitration, prepare settlement documents and file notice with court
- If case is resolved via mediation or arbitration, coordinate deposit of settlement funds in to trust account
- If case is resolved via mediation or arbitration, disburse funds to client with detailed final financial statement
- If case is NOT resolved via mediation or arbitration, continue with pre-trial preparation and requirements
- If required, file opposition to defendant’s Motion for Summary Judgment
- If required, prepare and file plaintiff’s Motion for Summary Judgment
- Prepare Demand for Exchange of Expert Information and serve notice to other side
- If ordered or coordinated, prepare for and attend with client a court order pre-trial Mandatory Settlement Conference (MSC)
- Notice and take depositions of expert witnesses
- Coordinate other side taking depositions or our client’s expert witnesses
- Coordinate and comply with all mandatory pre-trial discovery and trial document dates
- Obtain all final medical records and billings and any other evidence (photos, videos…) that will be used at trial
- Participate with opposing counsel re pre-trial stipulations to save all parties time and money
- Coordinate the appearance of trial witnesses at trial
- Issue subpoena’s to compel attendance of trial witnesses if needed
- Prepare all pre-trial Motions in Limine
- Prepare and coordinate with opposing counsel Joint Exhibit List
- Prepare and coordinate with opposing counsel Joint Stipulated Facts
- Prepare and coordinate with opposing counsel Joint Jury Instructions
- Attorney pre-trial final preparation re voir dire (jury selection questions and strategy), opening statement, direct examination, cross examination, and closing argument
- Prepare and participate at the trial (normally 1 to 3 weeks of time)
- If appropriate, coordinate with client on post-trial appeal issues and representation
Tags: accident lawyers, car accident, car wreck, cincinnati injury lawyer, imjury lawyers, personal injury attorneys, personal injury lawyer, personal injury lawyers
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Friday, December 23rd, 2011
People injured in car accidents want to know how to get car accident injury compensation. They want to know how to get money for their injuries. This is rightfully so and is guaranteed by our Constitution offering life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.
Injury victims are not looking for a free ride . They just want to get their medical bills paid. They want their wage loss compensated. And they are entitled to get money to make up for the pain they endure and the limitations on their activities. Not being able to lift your child. Not being able to get out of bed without a sharp pain. Walking on a cane. Those are just a few things I have had clients have to deal with.
The insurance company wants to pay you as little as possible so how do I get money for my injury. What do I do so I can pay my bills. Here are some things you can do to at least attempt to be made whole.
5 Steps Car Accident INJURY Victims Should Take to get Money for Their Injury
1. Document your injury with pictures and good records.
2. Get competent medical treatment
3. Do not allow there to be any gaps in medical treatment
4. Make sure your doctor knows how your injuries are affecting your life
5. Hire a car accident injury lawyer dedicated to getting you money. Make sure this lawyer has tired 10 or more personal injury jury trials
As a Cincinnati car accident injury lawyer I have dedicated the last 30 years of my life to getting justice – fair compensation for my clients. I’m still passionate after all these years. I’ve had over 25 civil injury jury trials. I welcome your call today for a free consultation at 621-2345
Friday, December 23rd, 2011
Do I need a Cincinnati personal injury lawyer was a question a lady asked me today. She had been in a car accident. She had not called the police . She had not been to a doctor and it was two weeks since the auto accident. It was not a very long conversation.
This is a great question. And if you are in a car accident never hesitate to ask a personal injury lawyer if you need their help. I am always happy to discuss with anyone if I can be of assistance to them . However not every lawyer is the same. Some lawyers will take any case . What if anything they do with it is another question.
The simple answer to the question of, “Do I need a lawyer for my car accident injury,” is whether you have a serious injury and whether you can prove someone else was at fault for causing your injuries.
Car Accident Injury Claims I Do Not Take
I do not take every car accident injury case. Here are some guidelines of cases I will not take.
1. little or no car damage indicating a minor impact
2. Only one or two visits to the doctor
3. First visit to the doctor was not until 3 weeks or more after the car accident.
I want to be able to make a difference in people’s lives. I want to add value for the injury attorney services I provide.
So please remember if you suffer in silence and do not get medical treatment within a reasonable time I probably will not take your case.
If you have a personal injury case in Cincinnati, Ohio or if you want to know what your lawsuit is worth, talk with an experienced Cincinnati Injury Attorney about your case. Call me, Tony Castelli at 621-2345 for a free consultation.
Thursday, December 22nd, 2011
As a Cincinnati personal injury lawyer I have become familiar with injury and death from fire and smoke inhalation. I woke this morning to see that a two year old had died in a fire in Westwood, a suberb of Cincinnati, Ohio.
It was hard to tell from the news story in the Cincinnati Enquirer just what had happened. The cause and origin of the fire was unknown. More significantly not one word was mentioned about smoke detectors. The name of the landlord was not disclosed.
From familiarity with other fires I know just how important smoke detectors are. The public in the main is unaware that there are two types : photoelectric and ionic. The photoelectric has been praised by many as the one that will save lives.
As this was an apartment building, the City of Cincinnati ordinance puts resposibilities on the tenant and the landlord. The landlord needs to have working smoke detector(s) and the teneant needs to check the battery. There are so many issues in fire cases that there is no way I can cover them all in this article.
Just know that there are two types of smoke detectors and consider getting a photoelectric as these in most cases will provide adequate early warning while the ionic may not even go off. Maybe the child death could have been prevented. Hopefully the Cincinnati fire department will do a thorough investigation and NOT release the smoke detectors to the insurance company.
Sunday, December 18th, 2011
As a Cincinnati peronal injury lawyer I often work on car accident injury settlements. This involves listening to the client to learn the effects the injury had or has on them. Nailing down the evidence as to fault of the person who caused my client’s injury. Gathering medical records, medical bills, lost wage information, taking photographs, speaking with doctor’s , reviewing the medical evidence with my nurse case manager, gathering reports and dealing with the multiple insurance company’s involved.
After I have all this information it comes down to putting a realistic dollar value on my client’s personal injury. Usually I can come up with a fairly tight range of the money as a personal injury car accident damage attorney in evaluating what damages my client should get. When there is significant disagreement with the insurance company a personal injury lawsuit must be filed. chances are that a thoroughly prepared case will settle and not go to trial.
Recently my client had a rotator cuff tear to their shoulder involving surgery. Having tried a case to jury before I knew what that case brought. But even though the injury is similar their can be a great variance in what is awarded. It depends on too many factors to go into here. But I would be happy to answer any of your questions if you have an Ohio serious injury claim.
I can also do legal research and find out what other verdicts and settlements went for. One case I researched settled for $80,000. again that’s dependent on multiple injury factors a Cincinnati injury lawyer such as myself takes into consideration. Other verdicts or settlements were $70,000.00, $85,500, $61,500, $100,000. and I could go on . There were a couple much higher and a couple much lower but those were the unusual ones.
Please call me now if you have a serious injury for a free consultation to find out how much your personal injury case is worth. The time to call is now before it’s to late. 621-2345
Tuesday, December 13th, 2011
As a Cincinnati personal injury lawyer for 3o years sometimes it’s hard not to get upset at insurance company tactics and big government and the elected politicians. Recently Attorney General of Ohio Dewine conducted a “child safety summit.”
He called for a complete review of the foster care system. One wonders how much is politics and how much is a real concern for the welfare of children in foster care. According to his own press release the summit discussed the death of children after being reunited with relatives. There were also concerns of children not being reunited as well as medication of foster children. We applaud his effort in bringing people together to examine child safety issues. But.
The foster care people on the firing line welcomed a review and you can bet any improvement comes down to money. Something the state has not that much of to go around. To me the concern for safety rings hollow. But maybe I’m jaded.
You see I’m in a lawsuit involving the Ohio department of transportation. You can judge the concern for safety and their willingness to take responsibility by the dollars they compensate the people injured by neglect of Ohio operatives and their contractors. Their contractor’s are no different and maybe worse. So far its been “lawyer up ” as usual. Although some changes have been made for the betterment of safety of the motor vehicle traveling public.
I guesss we are better off than we used to be. In bygone days you could not sue the state under the theory that , “The King Can Do No Wrong.” But we know plenty of kings have done plenty wrong. so in recognition the state waives immunity from personal injury lawsuit in certain instances and allow themselves to be sued in the Court of Claims.
So lets follow this foster care issue. I can tell you as a former social worker for 241-kids that most of the people working in the trenches are underpaid and overworked. The smart ones get out before they burn out. That’s what I did . Now I really feel it comes down to me and my client to make a difference. And a fire still burns in me as a Cincinnati personal injury attorney to seek justice for accident injury victims whether it be as a car accident lawyer or other personal injury loss.
Sunday, December 11th, 2011
A woman was killed in a crash on I-275 in Symmes township on December 10, 2011. As a Cincinnati personal injury lawyer I know some of the issues that will be raised. One thing I know is that the system breaks down totally almost, when it comes to compensating the loved ones of the person killed by wrongful death. This is a death as a result of carelessness.
In the first place money will never make any one whole as it can in an injury or property damage claim. Plus, juries have literally been brainwashed by the insurance company to give a monetary value that is inadequate . I think a death caused by the fault of another should be compensated in the millions of dollars. It give value to the deceased and to his family to know their life meant more that some insignificant amount such as 1 -2 million dollars. It’s a slap in the face to the survivors to compensate their loss with just a million or so dollars. What happens when a plane goes down. The value of the plane in the millions of dollars is paid. A life is much more valuable than property. Any good Cincinnati wrongful death lawyer would tell you that or at they should.
Note in the commentary written on the Chanel 12 web site about the fact that seatbelts were not worn. This is of legal significance if this was a front seat passenger. But the real culprit was the driver that negligently changed lanes , crashed into another car and flipped it so that two passengers were thrown from the vehicle killing Rhonda Ball. Lets focus on the driver not the seatbelt. but I’ve seen it before used a defense and know that a great biomedical engineer can determine if a seat belt would have made any difference. if it would have the front seat passenger may not collect all their damages.
Find Cincinnati personal injury lawyer Anthony Castelli attorney and call 621-2345 for a free case review. He has seen this before and can help you if you are faced with a death of a family member or an injury to yourself, or an allegation that your failure to wear your seatbelt was the cause of your injury.
Friday, December 9th, 2011
As a Cincinnati personal injury lawyer for 30 years I have seen the development of injury lawsuits and many changes in the law. One of the significant changes especially for personal injury lawsuits is the use of mediation.
Mediation is the use of an independant third party to help the injury victim and the insurance company they are fighting reach an insurance settlement for the personal injury such as a car accident. But it can apply to any dispute.
The third party has no power to impose a solution. They use their skills in helping the parties compromise to reach a final settlement figure. Mediation is distinguished from arbitration. In arbitration a person or persons sit as the judge and the trial is shortened because documents can be substituted for mediation. Some Courts will require you to go to mediation or arbitration. In Ohio the parties can appeal the arbitration and go to trial. Arbitration has become outmoded because of the use of mediation. The problem with arbitration is and was the parties ability to appeal.
Allstate insurance was known to appeal almost every arbitration. However if you get a favorable jury verdict after Allstate’s apppeal this can set the state for a bad faith claim and prejudgement interest. Although the interest rate has been decimated from 10% to a small fraction by the legislature, rendering prejudgement interest not as useful to keep big insurance in check.
Many courts employ mediators. This can come without charge to the litigants. However in larger cases I suggest you hire an independent mediator. A real mediator should have skills that help other than just passing offers back and forth. A great mediator is able to analyze the issues and point out the strengths and weakness of the parties to their case. They are also able to get the parties to see how a compromise they may ultimately suggest has advantages to both parties. So if your personal injury attorney files a lawsuit for your personal injury I strongly suggest you hire an outside mediator.
Cincinnati personal injury lawyer Anthony Castelli Attorney welcomes your call at 621-21345 for a free consultation to find out, How much your case is Worth and what steps he suggests to getting the compensation you deserve.
Tags: Cincinnati attorney for accidents and injury, cincinnati personal injury lawyer on mediation, insurance settlement of personal injury attorney
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Wednesday, December 7th, 2011
As a Cincinnati personal injury lawyer it never ceases to amaze be how insurance companies offer car insurance with loopholes. What’s worse the legislature and the Courts have permitted this. Would you be surprised to know that if you were negligent and hurt a family member your policy probably does not protect you, nor cover your family members injuries.
Isn’t it the law that you have to drive with insurance. Even if the minimum limit in Ohio is a paltry $12500 per person and $25,000 per accident it still should cover everybody you hurt by you neglegent driving but it normally does not.
A recent court case Fratillal v Owners insurance brought home this point. A husband caused a car accident and injured his wide as a passenger. The Court declared that the exclusion in the automobile insurance policy was valid. The policy stated that Liability coverage does not apply to you or a family member. Therefore the wife could not recover for her injuries.
You should not always accept no for an answer from the insurance company. Get a good car accident lawyer to review all the facts and especially all the policies of insurance. There may be a way around it. Remember all insurance contracts are not the same. Even though there was a liability exclusion possibly there was not an uninsured exclusion. Ask your agent when you buy insurance that you want your family covered . Some insurance companies still provide this coverage.
Cincinnati personal injury lawyer Anthony Castelli Attorney can help. Call today to learn how much your case is worth and how to maximize and get that fair value. Anthony welcomes your call at 621-2345 for a free no risk case review.
"Your office has been nothing but good to us! From our very first phone call to the very end, you were there to listen. You have been a fantastic attorney. We were undoubtedly going to lose everything we had because of the accident, but you made sure we were taken care of!! We are no longer worried about losing our home, and it's because of you! My family is back on track! Words cannot express how much we appreciate everything you did for us. I know you will be a blessing to a lot more people!" With love,
Morris & Jennifer Smith