Articles Posted in Personal Injury

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Personal Injury LawyersA couple weeks ago, another Huntsville lawyer bragged on social media about the number of 3M earplug cases he signed. He posted on multiple social media platforms about his large number of clients and then solicited for more clients. While that lawyer is marketing for these cases, he’s really not handling them. He’s simply signing cases to refer. He’s signing and referring them to a law firm far away from Huntsville – A firm that likely never knows the client and likely never works the local evidence. If you are going to promote yourself as handling a specific type of case, make sure you really do handle those cases. At a minimum, you should probably be admitted to the court where those cases are actually pending!

When it comes to large-scale claims involving defective products or medications, you need an attorney who is actively involved in the court and litigation process. The products can be complicated. Your attorney needs to know more than the talking points to sign clients. He or she needs to know the science and experts behind the products. The legal process can be complicated. Your attorney needs to understand the courts where the claims are pending. Your attorney should be admitted to practice in those courts. He or she needs to understand the legal doctrines that can easily ruin a good case. The medical evidence can be complicated. Your attorney needs to be experienced in developing medical evidence and familiar with the local medical specialists.

Over the years, I’ve received literally hundreds of phone calls from people upset because their case went to some out-of-state law firm where they were simply a number. After a period of time, they realized something was wrong and they were not getting personal service. Nobody personally argued for them in court. Nobody personally prepared their evidence and claims. They started looking locally and then called to ask questions. By the time they called, it was usually too late to fix the damage caused by the huge settlement mill firm that had their case.

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Blackwell Law FirmA recent al.com article discussed the jobs with the highest workplace fatality rates. What are the deadliest jobs? While the article discusses current statistics, the overall types of deadly and dangerous work remain similar year-after-year. You can read the article at Jobs With The Highest Fatality Rates In The USHere is the top 10 list:

10.  Farmers, Ranchers, Other Agricultural Workers (20.9 deaths per 100,000 full-time workers; Total fatal work injuries of 207)

9.  Underground Mining Machine Operators (21.6 deaths per 100,000 full-time workers; Total fatal work injuries of 10)

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Untitled-design-3-300x300Have you filed a personal injury claim? If so, the insurance company may conduct surveillance on you. After reading a recent news article about one insurance company that may have illegally conducted surveillance, I thought I would discuss the topic.

Injured? Surveillance Might Be An Issue.

In Alabama workers compensation cases, surveillance is very common. But, it also occurs in other personal injury cases such as car accident claims. The potential for surveillance is a topic any personal injury lawyer should discuss with his or her clients.

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Huntsville LawyersToday, I want to talk about nursing home staffing. Across Alabama, nursing homes and assisted living facilities are UNDER-staffed. This lack of staffing lowers the quality of life for many residents. And, it puts our elderly relatives and neighbors at risk of neglect and injury.

This lack of staffing also causes problems for those workers dedicated to helping elderly residents. Imagine being the only worker left to monitor and care for far too many residents. Burnout is an issue. And, worker injury is an issue. Over the years, we’ve seen many serious work-related injuries and disabilities suffered by nursing home workers forced to work too many hours and care for too many patients.

Staffing issues impact our vulnerable, elderly neighbors. They also impact the people trying to care for them. Earlier this year, the President proposed new rules to create minimum staffing standards. Let’s take a look at the problem and potential solution.

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Huntsville Personal Injury LawyersSafety. It’s a topic I frequently discuss on this blog. Today’s post goes beyond normal safety or injury talk. Today, I’m discussing employers who knowingly choose to put their employees in a situation where injury or death is likely. We’re not talking companies that are negligent in keeping the workplace safe. We’re talking companies that know a grave danger actually exists in the moment but then put their own employees into that danger anyway. What kind of boss sends his own workers into the face of a known danger where their deaths are likely?

No employer should ever knowingly demand its employees put their lives needlessly at risk. No employer should ever choose to ignore known workplace dangers. But, that’s the story I recently read about a deadly workplace accident in another state.

What happened? A deadly trench collapse killed two workers. What makes that collapse so terrible is that the boss sent workers into the trench knowing it had partially collapsed earlier in the day. He knowingly sent his own workers into a collapsing trench to finish the job.

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Huntsville Personal Injury AttorneysA recent Huntsville news article tells the story of a bicyclist injured in a hit-and-run. This accident happened on a roadway in the City of Madison. But, the story is all too common.

A car hits a cyclist. Instead of stopping and helping, the driver speeds away. The cyclist is left on the road injured. Hit-and-run accidents involving cyclists are very common.

Afterwards, the police search for the offender. Maybe a witness saw something that helps identify the vehicle. Maybe a business along the roadway has a camera. In the last few years, we’ve obtained some good video footage in several car accident cases. Sometimes, the police locate the driver. But, in many cases they do not. In most cases, the driver who caused the crash is never identified.

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Personal Injury CaseI recently saw a law firm post that asked — What trauma do children experience from accidents? Interesting question. Unfortunately, that law firm’s post simply listed a number of specific physical injuries. The post simply listed injuries that could be suffered by children as well as adults. They were not providing useful information. Instead, they were writing for Google search. A list of physical injuries might help that law firm with Google search but it does very little to answer important questions. It provides no real answers.

If your child suffers an injury from a car accident, you need to talk to the doctor. You need to talk with your child’s pediatrician or an appropriate specialist. In Huntsville and Birmingham, we even have orthopedics who sub-specialize in spine and bone injuries to children. It’s essential that potential injuries be diagnosed and treated as soon as possible. Proper treatment is key to the best recovery.

While that other firm’s post provided little or no useful information, I did start thinking — What is unique about car accident injuries to minors that you might need to know? How do personal injury claims for children differ from those to adults? What key information is important to know? If a parent were looking for information about their child’s accident, what might be important? Here are four key areas where Alabama personal injury claims for children differ from those to adults:

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Huntsville Workers Compensation AttorneysAccording to the new Amazon CEO, the company’s “injury rates are sometimes misunderstood.” I guess that’s his “spin” on the high numbers. In modern society, “I’m just misunderstood” seems to be the first defense for people who do NOT want accountability for their bad or dangerous decisions!

The Amazon CEO’s letter reminds me of a construction injury case I worked several years ago. I represented a steel worker who suffered disabling injuries in a worksite fall on a Huntsville project. The contractor did nothing for safety — No real safety plan. No real safety meetings. No real safety equipment. At trial, the construction company’s executive claimed his company was safe and my case was just a “misunderstanding” of their safety culture. The executive then bragged from the witness stand about a safety award the company won (and proudly displayed on its website). Here’s the problem with their so-called award — It was a complete spin. They had multiple accidents and even deaths on their worksites. The award only counted project managers. It did not count the workers doing the real (and dangerous) jobs. It was a fake award. If any “misunderstanding” existed, it was because the company was trying to spin its safety failures. Fortunately, the truth came out in our trial. We were able to hold the company accountable for all our client’s personal injuries and damages.

Is safety a real concern or not? Do some companies manipulate the numbers to lie about their safety record? Are these companies simply “misunderstood” as Amazon’s CEO claims? What’s the real truth?

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Distracted Driving Injury AttorneysDing!

You glance down at the phone to read a text. Then, you look back at the road ahead.

Ding!

You glance down to read another text. When you look back to the road this time – the car in front of you is stopped! All you see are red brake lights. It’s too late.

Crash!

That’s how quickly distractions can result in car crashes. A crash at normal roadway speeds creates a huge risk of serious personal injury. We hear some version of this story almost every week. A story of distraction while texting, selecting songs, or other uses of a cellphone. Continue reading →

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Best OfI saw the picture on Facebook. The Huntsville lawyer stands smiling next to his desk. On the desk sits a large glass (or plastic) trophy. I cannot remember the name of the award. It was probably “Best Lawyer Across From The Courthouse In Downtown Huntsville!” I’m sure it was the best of something. I also know this — The same company sent an email to lawyers across Alabama promising to award them “the best of….” for only a small price. For a couple hundred dollars they could also stand next to the trophy and market themselves to unsuspecting clients. It’s a scam.

I’ll give you another example. Last week, some website published a list of its 20 best personal injury lawyers in Huntsville. I only heard of this list because another lawyer was laughing about it. Why was he laughing? This lawyer tried multiple car accident cases in Madison County last year. Our firm tried some as well. He was laughing because he hadn’t seen the listed lawyers at the courthouse.

The list was quite interesting. It contained 3 or 4 criminal lawyers who don’t even handle personal injury cases. It included a firm that advertises for car accident cases but secretly has a deal to refer the cases to an outside lawyer for a fee. That advertising firm even put a real small print disclaimer on one of its website pages. The reality — They don’t try accident and injury cases. I think that type of misleading advertising is horrible. The list also had a semi-retired local lawyer on it. These firms contributed in exchange for a fake “vanity” listing and internet link they could market.

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