Frequently Asked Questions
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Who can file a personal injury lawsuit for a burn injury?
Who can file a personal injury lawsuit for a burn injury?
Any victim who suffers burn injuries as a result of another party’s negligent or reckless act or behavior can pursue damages for the losses those injuries cause them. Some of the common scenarios that may result in this type of injury case include:
- An at-fault party handling a hazardous material in a negligent away and spills it on the victim, causing burn injuries
- An at-fault party causes a fire to start that results in the victim sustaining burn injuries
- An at-fault party misapplies a product on the victim that causes burn injuries, such as medical staff applying some form of medication or a hairdresser applying hair dye or other solution
- The victim is burned by a product with a defective or dangerous design or problem during manufacturing
What are the damages a motorcycle accident victim can collect?
National statistics show that almost 80 percent of motorcycle crashes cause serious injury or death to the motorcyclist. This is largely due to the lack of protection that a motorcyclist has when another vehicle slams into them. Injuries suffered by motorcycle accident victims are often catastrophic, requiring long-term recovery and many suffer permanent disabilities. Some of the damages a motorcycle accident lawyer will pursue for victims include:
- Past, current, and future medical bills
- Loss of income, including loss of future income if the victim is permanently disabled
- Pain and suffering
- Mental anguish
- Permanent disability
- Disfigurement or scarring
How does a Va. Accident Attorney Prove Liability in a Motorcycle Crash?
Your attorney will use all of the evidence – police reports, witness statements, etc. – to build a case proving liability against the other party. Some of the reasons an attorney will find that the other driver was negligent and liable for the crash include:
- Changing lanes without checking to see if any other vehicles are there
- Distracted driving
- Failing to see the victim’s motorcycle
- Failing to yield the right-of-way to the victim
- Fatigued driving
What type of information/evidence should a motorcycle accident victim bring when meeting with a Virginia motorcycle accident for the first time?
Your attorney will want to know all the details of what happened to you, including how the accident happened, what type of injuries you suffered, and the losses those injuries have caused you. Documents that will help your attorney build the case against the at-fault party include:
- Police Report: The police report provides an independent and unbiased account of the details of the crash, as well as the names and statements of any witnesses.
- Crash Site Photos: Having photos of the crash site can be very valuable for your cases. If you are physically unable to take the photos, have a family member or friend take photos. It is critical to obtain those photos as soon as possible following the crash. Take photos of skid marks, damage to your vehicle (and the other party’s vehicle if taking photos immediately following the crash). It is also a good idea to get photos of any landmarks and factors that may have contributed to the crash.
- Medical Records: Bring all of the medical records, as well as any medical bills, you have received for treatment of your injuries.
- Witness Statements: If you were able to obtain statements from witnesses, your attorney may be able to use those to help with your case.
What happens during a personal injury trial?
Although each jurisdiction has their own procedures and rules, trial formats are very similar in civil courtrooms across the country. There will likely be pretrial motions filed by both attorneys, which the judge will decide. Jury selection will take place, with the plaintiff’s (the victim) attorney and the defendant’s (at-fault party/insurance company) attorney asking each potential juror questions and using their options of accepting or challenging the juror. The judge may also ask potential jurors questions.
Once the jury is seated, each of the attorneys will give an opening statement. An opening statement is basically a summary of the case they will be presenting. The plaintiff’s attorney will present their case first to the court, offering evidence and witness testimony. Then the defendant’s attorney will present their case. When the defense rests, the plaintiff is allowed to offer any rebuttal evidence or witnesses.
After all evidence and witness testimony has been offered, both sides will then present their closing arguments. This is done the same way the cases were. The plaintiff first, then the defense, and the plaintiff offering final remarks in rebuttal to the defense’s closing argument.
The judge will then instruct the jury on the laws that apply to the case. The jury will then go to a jury room and deliberate the case. When they reach their verdict, everyone will be called to court where the verdict will be read aloud.
What are the pros and cons with taking a personal injury case to trial?
If you are the victim, the pros and cons need to be considered against whatever settlement offer the at-fault party’s insurance company has offered. The victim’s personal injury attorney will have evaluated the case and determined what amount of financial compensation the victim deserves. How close the insurance company’s settlement offer is to that amount usually determines whether the case will end up in court.
There are always risks going to trial because there is no way to predict what the jury will decide. There have been many personal injury lawsuits where the jury has awarded the victim more than what they were seeking and lawsuits where the jury has awarded the victim much less or denied their claim completely.
Having an experienced Virginia accident attorney representing you will help ensure you choose the best legal options for your situation.
Which personal injury cases go to trial?
Approximately 10 percent of personal injury cases end up going to trial. The majority of cases are settled when the victim (usually through their personal injury attorney) and the at-fault party’s insurance company reach an agreement as to how much financial compensation the victim deserves. When the two sides cannot reach an agreement, then the case usually moves forward to be litigated in civil court.
There are a number of reasons why a settlement cannot be reached. The insurance company may try to shift some of the fault of the incident onto the victim or they may deny the claim completely.
Even when a case does go to trial, a settlement can still be negotiated as long as the agreement is made before any verdict or award is reached by the judge or jury hearing the case.
What are the most common types of bicycle accidents?
At our Virginia personal injury law firm, we often handle bike accident cases, working to get victims the financial compensation they deserve for their injuries. Virginia has two specific statutes that address the responsibilities vehicle drivers have to cyclists, Code of Virginia § 46.2-818.1. and Code of Virginia § 46.2-839.
The most common types of cycling accidents we see include:
- An occupant of parked vehicle opening door of the vehicle into the cyclist
- Sideswipe by a passing vehicle
- Vehicle rear ends bicycle
- Vehicle turning left at intersection cutting off cyclist traveling in the other direction
- Vehicle turning right and cutting the cyclist off
What are the most common bicycle accident injuries?
Because there is nothing to protect the cyclist from the impact of the vehicle slamming into them, many injuries that bike accident suffer are severe ones. Many of these injuries are so catastrophic they result in the victim’s death. The most common injuries include:
- Brain and Head Injuries: More than 40 percent of bike accident victims suffer some type of head injury, including concussions, brain damages, and skull fractures.
- Limb Injuries: More than 40 percent of bike accident victims sustain injuries to their arms, while leg injuries occur to approximately 25 percent of victims.
- Abdomen and Chest Injuries: Although less than 10 percent of bike accident victims sustain injuries to these areas, when they do occur, they are often severe ones.
Who is most at risk of being injured in a bicycle accident?
Each year, there are approximately 45,000 cyclists injured and another 800 killed in bicycle accidents. Although any cyclist can find themselves the victim of a bike accident, there appear to be certain factors that increase that risk.
According to national statistics, the average age of cyclists killed in bike accidents is 45, although that number continues to creep up each year. The majority of cyclists killed or injured are male, accounting for more than 80 percent of victims.
Most fatal bike accident occur in urban areas and at non-intersections. And despite what many people may believe, about 80 percent of bike accidents occur during the day, although night cycling is definitely more dangerous.