Frequently Asked Questions
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I have been injured in an accident caused by another party and now need to hire someone to clean my home because I am unable to. What recourse do I have?
When a victim is seriously injured and left with long-term or permanent injuries, they are often unable to do many of the activities that they did prior to their injury. Not only does this include working, but it can also affect the daily activities that the victim was responsible for. For example, the victim had the responsibility of the upkeep of their home, including cleaning the inside and lawn care on the outside. Another example is when the victim is a stay-at-home parent with young children, they are responsible for. If the victim is not able to address these needs themselves because of their injuries and have to hire someone to take care of them, they may be able to pursue financial compensation for these expenses in their personal injury claim.
What happens if a victim fails to mitigate damages in a personal injury lawsuit?
If a victim fails to mitigate the damages their injuries cause, it can have a negative effect on any injury claim or lawsuit they have filed against the at-fault party. For example, let’s say the victim fails to follow medical treatment recommendations from their doctor. This causes their injury to worsen and leads to more medical expenses, a longer recovery period and loss of income, and other financial damages. The insurance company could successfully use the victim’s failure to follow their medical treatment plan as a way to avoid paying for any of those additional losses the victim has suffered.
What is the victim’s responsibility for mitigation of medical damages?
It is expected that the victim will seek out medical care within a reasonable time period following an accident. Although it is not uncommon for symptoms of an injury to be delayed, once symptoms appear, the victim needs to seek out medical assistance right away and not wait an unreasonable amount of time. Doing so could cause the injury to worsen and increase the amount of medical expenses.
It is also expected that the victim will follow their doctor’s medical recommendations and treatment plan. This means following all medical instructions, keeping all appointments, taking all medications, and following up with other specialists, such as physical therapists.
What does it mean to mitigate damages in a personal injury lawsuit?
When a victim is injured, they must take reasonable action to minimize the losses their injuries are causing them, such as medical bills, loss of income, and other expenses and losses associated with the injury. This is referred to as mitigating damages.
For example, when the victim seeks out medical treatment for their injury, it is expected they will not seek out a world-renowned medical provider, but will instead seek medical treatment from a qualified, local medical provider.
I have been injured in a bus accident. What do I do now?
If you have been a victim of a bus accident, the first and immediate thing you should do is seek medical attention. This is critical even if you think you haven’t been injured. It is not uncommon for injury symptoms to be delayed and the insurance company could use a delay in medical treatment to deny your injury claim.
Once you have seen a medical provider, your next step should be to contact a Virginia bus accident attorney. Bus accident claims can be complex, especially if the vehicle involved is owned by a municipality. An attorney can ensure you receive the compensation you are entitled to for your injuries.
What are the safety requirements for buses in the state of Virginia?
There are a variety of buses that travel on Virginia roads: school, transit, charter, sightseeing, and private. But all of these buses fall under the rules of the Virginia Department of Transportation, as well as the jurisdiction of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). There are regulations regarding the maximum size a bus can be, when they are required to have air brakes, how many axles the vehicle should have, vehicle lighting, and the type of safety glass they may have. There are also requirements bus drivers must meet, as well as how many hours they are allowed to operate.
What are the most common causes of bus accidents?
Although there are a variety of reasons why bus accidents occur, some of the most common are the following:
- Bus driver alcohol and/or drug use
- Bus driver distraction
- Bus driver fatigue
- Failure to maintain lane
- Failure to yield
- Mechanical failures
- Tire issues
What is social media surveillance in a personal injury case?
In today’s society, millions and millions of people post all kinds of personal information on their social media pages. Photographs, check-ins, statuses all show up on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and more. But an insurance company can use all of your social media posts against you in order to try to prove your claim is invalid. Even if you have all of your accounts set to private, the insurance company can file a motion with the courts to have you turn over this information as evidence.
What is video surveillance in a personal injury case?
It is not uncommon for an insurance company to utilize the services of investigators to follow and watch a victim while they go through their day to day activities. The investigator will usually video record or take photos of any activity they think could be used to prove the victim is not really injured as they claim they are. This evidence can all be presented during litigation as evidence against the victim. However, the victim’s attorney can also use the recordings to prove the victim is injured and can request all videos and photos during the discovery phase of litigation.
Is it legal for an insurance investigator to “spy” on a victim while their claim is pending?
It is legal and it is also likely, especially if the amount of the claim is a significant amount. As long as the investigator is not infringing on your privacy, then it is legal. In order to avoid any issues that could jeopardize your claim, it is important to always be honest about your injury. Do not exaggerate the extent of injuries, but also do not push yourself to do things your body is not physically ready to do, such as go back to work too soon or work on household chores.