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What is an Independent Medical Examination?

Personal Injury Lawyer Delray Beach, FL

After suffering injuries from an accident, it is necessary to seek medical attention and undergo a medical examination. A medical examination will allow a physician to diagnose your injuries and create a plan for treatment. Most likely you will make an appointment with a trusted doctor that you already know. If you choose to pursue a personal injury lawsuit to recover damages from your accident however, you may be required to submit to an independent medical examination. An independent medical examination is an additional medical examination ordered by an insurance company or sometimes a judge involved in your personal injury case. This is basically a second opinion about your injuries to rule out any bias that may have existed with your own doctor.

If you are ordered to undergo an independent medical examination, you should contact an experienced personal injury lawyer Delray Beach, FL trusts at The Law Office of Eric H. Luckman, P.A. to guide you through the process. Independent medical examinations are often conducted by doctors who work with insurance companies. Although this process is meant to rule out bias, these doctor’s often have the goal of minimizing your injuries to benefit the insurance company. An experienced lawyer can help you protect yourself and your claim during this examination.

It is always wise to take a friend or family member with you to an independent medical examination. This person can take notes that may be valuable to your case. Arrival time, time in the waiting room, actual duration of the exam, medical history discussed and questions pertaining to the accident are all very important to document. This person can also act as a witness on your behalf if there is a dispute about the exam later on.

You should be wary of what documents you fill out at the doctor’s office. Always consult with your lawyer before filling out forms because the doctor should already have all necessary medical information. Information you provide could be used later against you in your claim.

There may be temptation to lie or to exaggerate your injury during the examination because you know that this doctor is possibly working against you. It is so important that you do not do this and you are honest in your exam. Certain tests may be given with the purpose of tricking you or proving that you are exaggerating. Honesty and giving 100% effort on all tests is crucial during your exam.

You are entitled to a copy of the report an independent medical examiner submits to your insurance company. You should go over this report with your lawyer to insure accuracy and completeness. You can also compare the report with your own notes of the examination.

It is very likely that you will be ordered to undergo an independent medical examination if you are filing a personal injury lawsuit. Insurance companies want to be sure that an injury is legitimate before paying out large sums of money. It is important to know how an independent medical exam and your behavior at an exam can affect your lawsuit. To protect your rights and interests, you should always consult with an attorney before undergoing an independent medical exam.

Can Chiropractic Care Be Covered in a Personal Injury Suit?

Personal Injury Lawyer Delray Beach, FL

One of the main components of a personal injury lawsuit is ensuring the injured party undergoes appropriate treatment to recover from injuries they suffered in an accident. Treatment can include hospitalization, surgery, doctor visits, medications and in some cases, chiropractic care. A Chiropractor uses hands on spinal manipulation to align the muscular skeletal structure to restore mobility to joints, relieve pain and pressure, and allow the body to heal itself following an accident. Chiropractic care is most effective for injuries that happen suddenly like a car accident or fall and has been proven helpful in correcting back and neck injuries.

Chiropractic care can be covered in a personal injury lawsuit; however, the treatment must be proven to be medically necessary. An experienced personal injury lawyer can help you make this determination and collect evidence for your case. Even though chiropractic care is proven to be an effective form of treatment, there is still some prejudice about the treatment from insurance companies. Insurance companies tend to put more weight in mainstream medical treatment by physicians and hospitals. To ensure that chiropractic care will be covered in your personal injury claim there are a few things you can do.

It is important to seek medical attention as soon as possible after suffering an injury in an accident. Some symptoms do not present themselves right away and waiting to seek care can make them worse. Before anyone can be treated, there must be a diagnosis. A chiropractor can diagnose your injuries and help you understand the full scope of your injuries. You should always be aware of what has happened to your body, risks of not receiving treatment and the potential recovery outlook with treatment. This will help create a plan for how you are to be treated. An understanding of your injuries and plan for treatment are essential to your personal injury case and proving that the chiropractic care you received was medically necessary.

A chiropractor should keep detailed, accurate records of your care and treatment. This includes medical charts, extent and severity of all symptoms, all treatments provided and detailed billing information. Vague or missing records could result in an insurance company or jury determining that your chiropractic care was unnecessary. This will make recovering chiropractic expenses in your personal injury lawsuit more difficult.

Sudden impact injuries like car accidents and falls often result in soft tissue injuries, disk injuries and nerve injuries. If you have suffered from any of these injuries, treatment from a chiropractor could be invaluable to your recovery process and pain relief. Without proper documentation however, an insurance company may not agree to pay for your chiropractic care leaving you with a hefty medical bill. After you suffer an injury, contact an experienced personal injury lawyer Delray Beach, FL trusts at The Law Office of Eric H. Luckman, P.A. to learn your rights and options for medical care.

How Can I Protect Myself from a Motorcycle Accident?

Personal Injury Lawyer

Many motorcyclist accidents result in the rider suffering painful and costly injuries. It is almost unheard of for a motorcyclist to walk away unharmed, without an injury that requires some sort of medical attention. Both newer and more seasoned motorcycle riders may continually wonder what else they could be doing to stay safe when sharing the road with other vehicles. Perhaps the last thing motorcyclists want to encounter, is a terrible accident when they were just hoping for an enjoyable cruise, or safe ride to work and home.

Here in the article below, we have aimed to answer the one question most motorcyclists may ask themselves: How can I protect myself from being part of a motorcycle accident?

Wear Gear that Offers Protection and Comfort

When purchasing motorcycle gear, it is important that the rider opts for material that is both protective and comfortable. Gear that restricts movement can make it more difficult to make turns, yield, and react quickly if an unexpected threat were to arise on the road. A brief list of gear to always have on when going out for a ride include:

  • Long pants and sleeves
  • Gloves with hand grip
  • Eye protection
  • Durable boots that cover ankles
  • Layers for cooler weather
  • Full-face helmet

Be Alert At All Times

A motorcyclist must not only be alert to his or her movements on the road, but other drivers as well. Car drivers may be texting, distracted or not watching out for you as you cruise alongside, behind or in front of them. Be especially wary of intersections, as this is where a large percentage of crashes can occur.

Do Not Ride in Bad Weather

The roads are slicker during wet weather, and it can be more straining to make maneuvers during strong winds. Additionally, car drivers may cause accidents due to not being careful during inclement weather. A speedy car driver may end up hydroplaning through an intersection or across lanes, and hit a motorcyclist riding nearby as a result.

Take Motorcycle Classes

Whether you are new to riding or have been for many years, it can always help to take a class every so often as a refresher for motorcycle safety. Classes may be available both in person and online.

Invest in a Safety Approved Helmet

Not all helmets are made the same. Some are safety approved and built strong for ultimate protection, while others are thriftier and better left on the shelf. Do research on helmet options and choose one that may be more money, but offers a higher level of protection. In the event you are involved in a motorcycle accident, you may thank yourself for buying that top rated helmet.

A motorcyclist that has been hit by a car driver should seek medical attention immediately. If the rider suffers physical and financial damages due to the collision, it may be in his or her best interest to meet with a personal injury lawyer Deer Park, TX relies on who is familiar with such cases. It may be possible for the motorcyclist to receive compensation from the driver at-fault through filing a civil lawsuit.

 


 

Thank you to our friends and contributors at John K. Zaid & Associates for their insight into motorcycle accidents and personal injuries.

How to Get the Help You Need After a Car Accident

Car accident injury chiropractorSeeking the help needed after a car accident involves not only dealing with the legal side of things, but taking care of your health as well. It is common for car accidents to have a lasting impact on your life- physically and financially- but those effects can be mitigated by leveraging options to recover more quickly. It is important to know that choosing who handles your case, legally and medically, can have a large impact on the outcome.

When it comes to dealing with the physical ailments of a car accident, emergency care and timeliness of care should be highest priority. After the accident, it is important that you be examined by a trained professional with the experience to properly diagnose your ailments. The physical examination performed by a doctor after your accident will determine what, when and how much medical care is applied to improve- or resolve- your condition. Choosing an experienced professional to handle any type of accident, especially a car accident, is always a wise decision. Doctors with experience in car accident cases are more likely to accurately diagnose your condition and suggest options that have worked for patients, in the past, with similar ailments.

If your case is handled and cleared (negative for fractures, brain bleeding and spinal cord involvement) by an Emergency room doctor, but you still have pain it is important to continue medical care.  Especially since you may not have felt the pain for a day or two after the accident (and may have refused medical care at the time). Some of the musculoskeletal structures commonly injured in a car accident include: muscles, ligaments, tendons, joint capsules, spinal discs and peripheral nerves.

Healthcare professionals who address these concerns include, but are not limited to: Medical Physicians, Neurologists, Chiropractors, Physical Therapists and Massage Therapists.  An up and coming approach to medical care after a car accident, Chiropractic services, has been found to be highly successful and has demonstrated improvement to musculoskeletal conditions in a short period of time. Chiropractic is gentle, yet effective at addressing multiple causes of post car accident pain.  

Even if you don’t feel pain right away, you should check in with a doctor or chiropractor to make sure you won’t have any lasting damage. Injuries aren’t always apparent right off the bat, but a skilled professional will be able to tell if there’s something that should be addressed. Waiting too long can make problems worse, which in turn makes the recovery time longer, so patients should try to get checked out as soon as possible after getting in an accident.

Thanks to our friends and contributors from Premier Chiropractic Clinic for their insight into receiving treatment after a car accident.

 

Dog Bite Injuries

Personal Injury Lawyer Delray Beach, FL

Every year in America, it is estimated that 800,000 people suffer from dog bites that require medical attention. The majority of dog bite victims are children resulting in dog bites being the second largest reason for childhood injuries. If you are bitten by a dog, you may have a legal right to recover damages for your injuries. The circumstances surrounding a dog bite incident vary case by case and the statutes regarding dog bites in each state will play a large role in the type of legal case you may have.  

The first and most important action after a dog bite is to seek medical attention. Even if you don’t think the bite is that bad, you are at risk for infection and disease. Seeking medical attention will generate a report that can later be used in your claim. You should also take photographs of your injuries. If you end up going to trial after your injuries have healed, photos of the injury and healing process can help a jury understand the seriousness of the incident.

Different states have different laws regarding dog bites. If you are ever bitten by a dog, consulting an attorney is your next step in this process. An attorney will know the local laws and how to best go about proving that the dog owner or other responsible party is liable for your injuries. Some states impose strict liability on dog bites. This means that even if the dog owner did not act negligently, they are still held responsible for their dog actions. Other states have more relaxed dog bite statutes which result in an attorney having to prove liability. Knowledge of the dog being aggressive, previous biting habits, or failure to have the dog properly secured are all facts that are considered when trying to prove negligence of a dog owner.

A dog owner does have the right to defend themselves and their dog when they are accused of negligence after a dog bite incident. “Beware of dog” signs or keeping a dog in a fenced in yard are two ways that a dog owner can fend off claims of negligence. If a person pursues a dog after being warned that the dog is potentially dangerous, their behavior can be seen as contributorily negligence. If a person acts threateningly towards a dog, the owner’s liability can sometimes be negated.

If a plaintiff can successfully prove the negligence of a dog owner in a dog bite case, they can be legally entitled to compensation for the damages suffered. Damages like medical bills and lost wages are easy to calculate into a claim. Damages like pain and suffering, loss of quality of life and punitive damages can be more difficult to determine. Depending on the severity of the attack, these damages can vary. If a person is bit and is left with physical disfigurement, damages for pain and suffering are likely to be much higher. Following a dog bite incident, a person can also develop anxiety and fear of dogs that effect their everyday life. In some cases, a jury will also award punitive damages. Punitive damages are usually only awarded if it can be proven that the dog owner engaged in reckless or intentional behavior.

Dog bite cases can vary in circumstances and be heavily affected by local laws. If you are ever the victim of a dog bite it is essential that you consult with an experienced personal injury lawyer Delray Beach, FL relies on at The Law Office of Eric H. Luckman, P.A. about the damages you may be entitled to recover as a result of your injury.  

Types of Car Insurance Coverage

Auto Accident Lawyer Boca Raton, FL

Every day, every driver on the road is at risk of being involved in a car accident. Although it isn’t something we like to think about, it is something we must be prepared for. Auto insurance is one way that people prepare and protect themselves should and accident occur. Most states require that drivers maintain some sort of minimal insurance coverage, but is that enough? How much do you really know about your auto insurance policy and coverage options? Below are five of the most popular types of auto insurance coverage.

1)Liability Insurance

Liability Insurance is mandatory in almost every state and is comprised of two parts; bodily injury liability and property damage liability. This type of insurance will cover the medical costs and property damage of the other party when you are at fault for the accident. This insurance however will not protect you, your passengers or your vehicle if you are responsible for the accident.

2) Collision Coverage

Collision coverage, unlike liability insurance, will cover damages sustained by your vehicle in the event of an accident. The accident can involve another vehicle, a stationary object like a fence, or no object or at all for example if your car flips. While collision coverage is usually optional, a lienholder will generally require this additional insurance on your vehicle.

3) Comprehensive Coverage

Not all damage a car faces happens in an accident. Comprehensive coverage will cover damage as a result of weather, fire, theft, or vandalism. Much like collision coverage, this extra insurance is optional unless a lienholder requires it.

4) Personal Injury Protection (PIP)/Medical Payments Coverage

The availability and requirement of policies regarding personal injury protection and medical payments coverage vary by state. Both of these policies will help cover costs associated with medical treatment following an accident. These policies can cover both you and your passengers regardless of who is at fault for the accident.

5) Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Protection

Although carrying an insurance policy is required by law, not everyone abides by these rules. If you are hit by a driver who does not have auto insurance, uninsured protection will help pay for expenses. This policy is also advantageous for when another party has insurance but only has the minimum required liability coverage. Costs relating to damages and medical bills can add up quick and if the other party’s coverage is less than what you need, underinsured protection will fill those financial gaps.

In addition to these five types of common coverage, there are other optional additions that you can add to your policy to further protect yourself. Guaranteed Auto Protection or “Gap” insurance covers the difference between the cars actual value and the amount of money you owe on a lean in the event of a total loss. Rental reimbursement can cover the cost of rental cars while your car is being repaired and emergency roadside assistance can cover any costs relating to breakdowns or running out of fuel.

Auto insurance isn’t something we always like to think about, but it is important to understand your policy and your insurance coverage needs to protect yourself if you are ever involved in an accident. All this and more can be explained to you by an auto accident lawyer Boca Raton, FL residents rely on at The Law Office of Eric H. Luckman, P.A.

Chiropractic treatment for construction workers

Personal Injury Lawyer

If you are a construction worker, you are no stranger to working in dangerous environments with heavy machinery. Because many of your daily tasks involve pulling and lifting heavy items, a common injury that many construction workers have is a back injury. Not only will this affect how well you work, but it can affect how many sick days you need to take. If you are worried about a back injury from construction work getting in the way of your life, you can find relief through chiropractic treatment. With specialized care and treatment options for you, chiropractors understand the demands that your job has and how to safely and effectively minimize your pain.

How do you develop back problems?

The OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) recently came out with a list of five factors that contribute to back pain. These are:

  • Working in one position for hours on end
  • Pushing or pulling items
  • Lifting items
  • Reaching or bending, and
  • Tasks the cause the whole body to vibrate

While these triggers can affect almost anyone in any job, the risks for construction workers are even greater. Not only do they need to be careful of the items in the list above, but they must watch out for:

  • Extremely heavy lifting
  • Obstacles on the job
  • How they lift items
  • Temperature, and
  • Height risks

How can a chiropractor help?

When addressing your construction work-related injuries, a chiropractor will often assess what kind of back injury you are suffering from first so that they can devise the correct treatment plan. When working with back injuries, they are usually separated into two categories. These are:

  • Cervical radiculopathy. This is a pinched nerve in your neck.
  • Spondylolisthesis. These back conditions affect the lower vertebrae in your back.

Treatment for these injuries

When treating for cervical radiculopathy, chiropractors can employ different manipulative therapeutic methods to help with the injuries. In addition to in-office visits, a chiropractor can also teach you techniques so that you can take healing into your own hands when you are at home, between sessions.

When treating for spondylolisthesis, a chiropractor can help find the underlying origin and help with symptoms. In this case, employing spinal adjustments can help with joints and restricted movements. Trigger-point therapy can also be used for particularly painful muscle areas, and stretching can help improve muscle flexibility and growth.

What are my next steps?

If you are a construction worker suffering from work-related injuries, you are not alone! While there are many ways you can be treated for your injuries and pain, you might be looking for a form of treatment that will allow you to get back to work without taking dangerous medicine that can be harmful while you operate tools and heavy machinery. If you want a natural form of treatment, chiropractic care is a great option for you. For more information on how chiropractic treatment can help you with your construction injuries, or to set up your appointment, call an office of chiropractic Gaithersburg, MD trusts today.

 


 

Thank you to our friends and contributors at Pain Arthritis Relief Center for their insight into chiropractic care for construction workers.

Common Causes of Car Accidents 

Personal Injury Lawyer Delray Beach, FL

Every year there are about six million car crashes and forty thousand car accident related fatalities in the United States. To put it in perspective, that is over sixteen thousand car accidents and over one hundred lives lost every single day. The majority of car accidents are caused by human error and could be prevented by utilizing safer driving practices. 

Distracted driving is the leading cause of car accidents and the number of distracted driving accidents grows larger every year. The obvious example of distracted driving is cell phone use. Texting while driving is now illegal in most states however the laws governing talking on cell phones while driving vary from state to state. Using a cell phone for looking at maps or posting to social media are also common distractions. Cell phone use is not the only activity that constitutes distracted driving. Eating, putting on make-up, and even passengers can all be distractions when driving.

Speeding is the second most common cause of car accidents behind distracted driving. Speeding reduces the amount of time a driver has to react while behind the wheel and increases the chances of losing control of the vehicle. Poor road conditions or inclement weather increase these risks. 

Seven percent of all car crashes and twenty one percent of fatal crashes can be attributed to fatigue driving. A fatigued driver can be just as dangerous as a drunk driver when operating a vehicle. When going on a long road trip, coffee and energy drinks may not be enough to keep you alert while driving. It is important to get a good night’s sleep before driving and to stop and rest throughout the trip when necessary. 

Drunk driving is the deadliest common cause of car accidents accounting for about twenty eight percent of all traffic fatalities. Alcohol severely impairs a person’s ability to drive safely by effecting judgment, vision, reducing coordination and concentration and impairing the ability to control one’s muscles. These factors put both the driver and everyone else on the road at risk of an accident. 

Reckless is a blanket term that refers to any unsafe driving habits. This can include improper lane changes, speeding, aggressive driving and tailgating. Operating a vehicle in this manner increases the risk of losing control and causing an accident. A defensive driving class is a good way to learn how to practice safe driving skill. 

Traffic signals like stop signs and traffic lights are put in place to protect drivers and regulate traffic. When a driver does not obey a traffic signal, a car accident is highly likely. Thirty six percent of crashes occur in intersections. Coming to a complete stop at stop signs and not speeding to beat a yellow light are two ways to safely adhere traffic signals and reduce the risk of car accidents. When a light turns green, always pause and check for cars or pedestrians who still may be in an intersection. 

The majority of car accidents are caused by human error and could have been prevented. You should not be held responsible for damages caused by other’s negligence. If you are the victim of a car accident due another person’s negligence you may be entitled to compensation for damages. An experienced personal injury lawyer Delray Beach, FL trusts  from The Law Office of Eric H. Luckman, PA can educate you about your legal rights and help guide you through the legal process. 

The Role of a Car Accident Witness 

Car Accident Lawyer Lake Worth, FL

A reliable witness at the scene of a car accident can end up playing a crucial role in a successful lawsuit. A witness can help piece together the events of an accident and corroborate an injured party’s story. A witness’s testimony can assist with proving who was at fault for the accident which is paramount when recovering damages caused by an accident. Following a car accident, it is important to identify a credible witness and gather the right information from that individual. 

After a car accident, it is a good idea to obtain contact information for anyone who may have witnessed the incident. Although questions about the accident can be asked and answered on scene, an accident scene can be chaotic and there may be injuries that need medical attention.  

The human memory is flawed and with time it is natural for details of an event to become unclear. It is important that a witness is contacted for a statement as soon as possible after an accident to assure you obtain the most detailed, credible statement possible. These statements will be valuable in the future if the lawsuit does end up going to trial. A trial date can be years after the actual accident causing witnesses to forget what happened. In most states, a witness can refer to their original statement when giving sworn testimony in court. This has several advantages. It keeps the witness honest because the witness is forced to tell the same story they told previously. It helps the witness refresh their memory as to the details of the accident and usually, a witness will even be able to read directly from their statement if they happen to draw a blank in court. 

You or your insurance company is allowed to question the witness, however it is always best to consult with an experienced car accident lawyer Lake Worth, FL residents trust from The Law Office of Eric H. Luckman, PA. An attorney who specializes in car accident lawsuits will know what questions and details are most important for a claim to recover damages. 

A witness should be asked to recall their point of view of the events leading up to and immediately following the accident. It is better to ask open ended questions to draw more information from the witness’s memory. Facts need to be established as to how the witness came to see the accident. Asking where they were positioned in relation to the crash, how far away were they and if they had a clear view of the crash can help achieve these facts. A witness should be asked to focus on the scene and indicate street names, intersections, vehicle positions, directions the cars were heading, weather conditions, and approximate speeds of the vehicles. It is important that the witness does not speculate and just recalls the facts of the accident from their own perspective. This will avoid the potential issue of hearsay if the case goes to trial.  

The most credible witnesses will always be those who have no interest in the case. Although a passenger in your car can give a statement attesting to the conditions of the accident, they may have suffered injuries and have a personal interest in the case.  

A good eye witness from the car accident can greatly benefit the party seeking compensation for damages suffered. A credible witness can help promote a speedy settlement or be a key aspect in a trial. If the right questions are asked and the right details are uncovered, a witness’s statement is invaluable in a car accident lawsuit. 

Trucking Accidents: Facts and Stats

Auto Accident Lawyer

When it comes to auto accidents with large trucks, even the smallest collision can be deadly. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, a total of 3,986 people died in large truck crashes in 2016. Read on to learn about some of the most common and shocking trucking accidents facts and stats.

TRUCKING ACCIDENT CAUSES

According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA)’s Large Truck Crash Causation Study, large truck accidents occur due to one of the following variables:

  1. Critical Event: an action or event makes a collision unavoidable
  2. Critical Reason: The FMCSA found that 87% of large truck critical reason accidents are caused by driver error. The types of errors are broken down into four categories:
    • Non-Performance: this error occurs when the driver becomes physically impaired due to seizure, heart attack, falling asleep, etc.
    • Recognition: similar to distracted driving, the driver was either inattentive, distracted, or failed to adequately observe a situation
    • Decision: the driver makes a poor decision, such as driving too fast, misjudging distance, etc.
    • Performance: the driver panics, overcompensates, or exercises poor directional control.Many of the above errors can be attributed to driver experience and/or fatigue.
  3. Associated Factors: the persons, vehicles, and environmental conditions present at the time of the crash (brake problems, traffic flow, road problems, speed, etc.)

TRUCKING ACCIDENT NUMBERS

The following information comes from FMCSA’s Fatality Analysis Reporting System (FARS) and Federal Highway Administration, Highway Statistics 2016 data.

  • 119,000 people were injured in crashes involving large trucks or buses
  • 4,564 people died in large truck or bus crashes in the United States in 2016.
  • The number of large trucks involved in fatal crashes increased by 3% from 2015 to 2016.
  • 37% of all fatal crashes, 23 % of all injury crashes, and 20% of all property damage only crashes involving large trucks occurred at night (6:00 pm to 6:00 am).
  • 84% of fatal crashes and 88% of nonfatal crashes involving large trucks occurred on weekdays (Monday through Friday).
  • 39% of large truck occupants killed in crashes were not wearing a seatbelt.
  • Speed was a factor in 17% of fatal truck crashes
  • 61% of fatal crashes involving large trucks occurred in rural areas
  • 27% of fatal crashes in work zones involved a large truck
  • 6% of fatal crashes involved a distracted driver
    • 16% of those were related to cell phone usage

HIRE AN ATTORNEY

If you’ve been injured in a trucking accident, you might be entitled to carry out legal action against the driver or truck company. Find a Central Phoenix, AZ truck accident lawyer with extensive experience securing the maximum fair compensation in auto accident cases. 

 


 

Thank you to our friends and contributors at Kamper Estrada, LLP for their insight into DUI charges and car accidents.