Police: How Much Force is Excessive Force?

On July 17th, 2014, Eric Garner died as police officers arrested him in Staten Island, New York. After video evidence became available on news outlets and social media networks, the NYPD received large amounts of public scrutiny regarding the actions of their officers in the events leading to Mr. Garner’s death. In the video, Garner was being placed under arrest by two plainclothes police officers, who claimed to have witnessed him selling untaxed cigarettes, which Garner had been arrested for on multiple occasions. As more NYPD officers gathered, they attempted handcuff and subdue Garner. During the arrest, Garner refused to place his arms behind his back, which prompted one officer to place him in a chokehold while other officers knocked him to the ground. The video shows that once he was on the ground, the officer did not release his hold even though Garner could be heard saying, “I can’t … Continue reading

Injured In An Auto-Accident: Will I Receive Compensation?

Are you automatically entitled to receive money for injuries sustained in an auto-accident? Many people think they are, but the truth is that they are not. Whether you will be compensated depends on many factors, one of the most important being what your doctors say about your injuries. In your medical chart, your doctor needs to note your diagnosis, prognosis and cause of the injury or injuries, and your doctor must relate the injuries to the auto-accident. Without the causal link it is unlikely that you can get fully compensated for your injuries.

Your Insurance Company Is NOT By Your Side

When car accidents occur, it isn’t always the drivers who hope to avoid liability and protect their pockets. In a recent decision in Berks County, Pennsylvania, the court punished Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company for attempting to avoid paying one of their own policyholders. The case stemmed from an accident where a policyholders automobile was damaged. After an appraiser informed Nationwide and their policyholder that the car was totaled, Nationwide decided not to accept the appraiser’s conclusion and ordered the vehicle off to another facility, with the hopes of saving themselves the money which it would cost to replace the vehicle. After four months of attempted repairs, Nationwide returned their vehicle with an unsound structural frame, so the Nationwide policyholder subsequently filed suit. Once the lawsuit was filed, Nationwide spent more than $2.5 million in order to delay litigation and make the case unaffordable for the plaintiff. Although paying the insured … Continue reading

New Method To Save Trauma Patients’ Lives

For some accident victims, the injuries they suffer can be minor, but for others the results can be catastrophic and they could end up in the trauma ward. Fortunately, scientists have developed and are testing a new method to increase the chance of survival for trauma patients. The technique, known as “induced hypothermia,” is a method designed to assist patients who are at risk of severe blood loss. For patients suffering from severe blood loss, the potentially fatal problem is that they bleed so much that their heart stops. Once the heart stops, the brain is unable to receive oxygen via blood, and can die in a few minutes. “Induced hypothermia” is a relatively new medical procedure that has just recently been approved for testing on humans. The procedure consists of doctors inserting a tube into a patient’s aorta, and then pouring ice-cold saline solution into the body in order … Continue reading

Why You Should Have Full-Tort Auto Insurance Policy

For clients who are seeking to recover for injuries suffered in an auto-accident, one of the first and most important questions to ask is whether their auto insurance policy provides full tort or limited tort coverage. In Pennsylvania, auto insurance providers are required to provide consumers the choice between full tort coverage and limited tort coverage. The real difference is how much access to the court system one has in order to seek compensation from injuries suffered in car wreck. A limited tort policy is usually about $100-200 cheaper per year, and those covered by a limited tort policy have very limited access to the court system. Essentially, if someone with limited tort coverage suffers injuries in a car wreck, then they do not have a claim unless they have suffered debilitating and disabling injuries. Examples of such injuries are broken bones requiring surgical repair, and herniated disks in the … Continue reading

How Will a Warning Sign Affect My Slip-and-Fall Case?

While such signs are meant to put customers on notice of potentially hazardous conditions, does the presence of a warning sign exempt a property owner from liability?The mere fact that a business has utilized a warning sign does not provide blanket protection from liability.  A yellow, plastic stand warning of a slippery floor can be an effective means of deterring customers from walking through a recently mopped area, but only when that sign provides an adequate warning of the danger.  The extent to which a sign provides adequate protection is dependent on a number of factors–many of which are often improperly addressed by business owners. If you have been the victim of a slip-and-fall accident in which there existed a sign warning of a possible danger, your right to sue for damages may be dependent on the answers to the following questions: Was the sign easy to read? Was the sign large … Continue reading

Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBIs) During Slip&Fall & Motor Vehicle Accidents

On average, Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBIs) affect more than 1.7 million Americans per year and play a contributing role in nearly one-third of all injury-related deaths.  Caused by a sudden bump, blow, or jolt to the head, TBIs disrupt the normal function of the human brain.  As a result, victims of TBIs may experience a variety of cognitive difficulties, including trouble controlling their thoughts, emotions, senses, and language.  Beyond these immediate effects, TBIs can have serious long-term consequences, including a greater risk of Alzheimer’s Disease, Parkinson’s Disease, and other similar brain disorders. In recent years, problems within the NFL and other contact sports have brought sports-related TBIs to the forefront of our national dialogue.  It is important, however, that the discussion not stop there.  While sports-related injuries may generate the biggest headlines, their publicity far outweighs their prevalence.  Contrary to what ESPN may lead you to believe, statistics show that … Continue reading

Tips for Driving in Winter Weather

Be it snow, sleet, ice, or rain, winter weather can wreak havoc on driving conditions.  Heavy precipitation can quickly affect visibility, while snow and ice can create surfaces that are dangerous to pedestrians, let alone motorists.  In concert, these forces of nature command the respect of drivers.  Those who fail to take caution not only endanger their own lives, but those of everyone around them. To avoid a dangerous situation, exercise great caution when navigating roads in wintry conditions. When roads are slick, be sure to reduce your speed accordingly; the posted speed limit may be entirely too fast during a snowstorm. Be sure to increase the distance between your car and the car in front of you, as icy roads can compromise your vehicle’s ability to stop. Obey all traffic signs and utilize turn signals.  After all, other drivers are facing the same dangerous conditions. Sometimes, however, adjusting your … Continue reading

Winter Weather and Its Effect on Premises Liability

When the mercury drops and the snow begins to fall, most of us would much rather have one hand on a remote control than two hands on a shovel. While the former is undoubtedly more comfortable, shoveling the sidewalk is a necessary winter evil. This is because of something called premises liability. Property owners are generally accountable for injuries occurring on their property. Depending on whether the person on the property is a visitor (like a patron to a store or restaurant, or someone who you permitted to enter your home) or rather a trespasser will determine the responsibilities of the property owner. But accountability kicks in if one of the following statements are true: The dangerous condition is attributable to the actions/inactions of the property owner; The owner was aware of the dangerous condition but failed to take corrective measures; The owner should have been aware of the dangerous … Continue reading