Texarkana Personal Injury Lawyer

Author Archive for Bruce Flint – Page 2

Top 5 Causes of Car Accidents

Car accidents happen every day for all sorts of reasons. Some accidents only cause minor damage and others are more serious.

 

  1. Distracted driving– This reason wasn’t always this high on the list, but with the rise of cellphones and texting, distracted driving now accounts for 25-40% of accidents. It’s not just cell phones, talking to passengers, changing the radio, doing makeup in the mirror and other distractions all contribute to this.Top 5 Causes of Car Accidents

 

  1. Drunk driving– Studies show that roughly 32% of accidents result from drunk driving. This is also one of the leading causes of car accident fatalities.

 

  1. Speeding– Like drunk driving, this is also a leading cause of fatal car accidents. Obviously, the faster the cars are going, the more serious the damage and injury will most likely be. When speeding is involved, the accident is rarely considered a minor accident.

 

  1. Weather– One cause of accidents that isn’t directly the driver’s responsibility is bad weather. Rain, ice, fog, winds, snow and other inclement weather all increase the chances for an accident.

 

  1. Car failure– This doesn’t cause as many accidents as the other reasons, but car failure can cause accidents if the conditions are right. Car failure can be a tire blow out, breaks not working, or batteries dieing.

If you’ve been injured in a car accident for any of these five reasons or any other reason, call the Law Offices of Flint & Soyars.

Top 5 Signs of Nursing Home Abuse

Nursing home abuse typically doesn’t get a lot of press, and most people are unaware of how important this issue is. If you have a loved one in a nursing home, there are several signs of nursing home abuse you need to be aware of. More than half a million senior citizens are abused in nursing homes every year.

Nursing home abuse is usually classified with one of six categories. Regardless of the category, here the top five signs of nursing home abuse.

  1. Fear– Often times the victim will be visibly fearful and unwilling to talk with you if their abuser is present. Be on the lookout for any staff members that make your loved one feel uncomfortable. The victim might not say anything about the abuse, so you need to be vigilant. 
  2. Hygiene– One of the telltale signs of neglect is poor hygiene. In this case, the victim might smell like feces or body odor because they are not getting the care they need.
  3. Behavior– Change in behavior can be a sign of old age, but it can also be a sign of abuse. Mood swings, depression, and anxiety can sometimes result from abuse. It’s best to let a doctor, who doesn’t work for the nursing home, determine if the change in behavior is old age or abuse.
  4. Malnutrition– Unexplained weight loss, dehydration, cracked lips, and dry mouth are all possible symptoms of malnutrition. This can be a serious problem because malnutrition can lead to a long list of other illnesses and conditions.
  5. Bedsores– Perhaps the most noticeable sign of abuse, bedsores happen when the victim is confined to their bed and the caretakers are not taking proper precautions.

These five signs are not the only signs of nursing home abuse, so if you think you’re loved one is being abused or neglected call the Law Offices of Flint & Soyars for a free consultation today.

Exploding E-cig Causes Semi-Truck Crash

Exploding-E-cig-Causes-Semi-Truck-CrashE-cigs, vapes, electronic cigarettes or whatever else you call them, are all flying off the shelves. These smoke-free cigarette alternatives came on the market a few years ago and sales have continued to skyrocket month after month.

Controversy about the long term effects of e-cigs has been swirling around, but so far the controversy has had little to no effect on sales with roughly 9 million Americans using e-cigs every day.

One of those 9 million Americans is Christian Starasinch, a truck driver from Orlando, Florida. Starasinch was driving through Indiana on I-65 when his e-cig exploded without any warning. The sudden burst caused Starasinch to lose control of his semi-truck and crash into the guardrail.

Luckily there were no other drivers in the area so Starasinch was the only injured person. His injuries were mainly from the explosion of the e-cig not from the crash. He was taken to a local hospital and treated for injuries to his face.

This is not the first documented case of an exploding e-cig, but these cases are rare. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) claims it has documented at least 25 e-cig explosions between 2009 and 2014. As a result of these 25 incidents nine people were injured, two of whom suffered serious burns.

A handful of lawsuits have been filed against e-cig manufacturers and dealers, but it is unclear whether these suits will be heard in court or even taken seriously by manufacturers at all.

If you’ve been injured and need an experienced personal injury lawyer call the Law Offices of Flint & Soyars for a free consultation.

How Driverless Cars Will Affect Injury Laws

The idea of a driverless car has been around in sci-fi comics and books for ages. Drivers have been pining over self-driving cars and we’re slowly getting closer to the day when driverless cars will transform from fantasy to reality.

Driverless Cars

Car manufacturers like Volvo and Mercedes, and even the tech giant Google, have been making strides toward a viable driverless car. This notion, while exciting, does present a new set of problems when it comes to legal liability.

If a driverless car hits another driverless car, who’s at fault? This question won’t likely be answered anytime soon, but it’s definitely worth considering.

We’ve all been on the wrong side of technology malfunctioning once or twice, so it’s fair to say a car that is fully dependent on technology to move and function could very well experience a malfunction that leads to an accident.

Google, Volvo, and Mercedes have already stated they will accept any fault in the event their driverless car causes an accident. Comforting as this pledge is, most legal experts are sceptical of this.

This kind of predicament will cause new laws to be written or old laws to be revised. Currently, liability laws hold the driver, not the car, responsible for any injuries or damages caused during an accident. The only time a car can be held responsible is when there was some sort of product liability involved.

We’re still years away from driverless cars dominating the roads, but this questions is better addressed sooner rather than later. Whether the laws change by an act of Congress or in a landmark Supreme Court decision, the Law Offices of Flint & Soyars will be ready. If you been injured in a car accident call the Flint & Soyars for a free case evaluation.

Commonly Asked Personal Injury Questions

The majority of Americans never think they will have to file a personal injury claim. Sadly, this assumption leaves people feeling helpless and unprepared every year. An injury can happen to anyone at any time. It could be a car wreck, a slip and fall, a dog bite, or a laundry list of other possibilities. When someone gets injured they typically have a lot of questions, especially if it’s their first time to file a personal injury claim. Here are some commonly asked personal injury questions.

1. What is my case worth?

There’s no blanket answer to this question because every case is different. The value of your claim will be determined by the amount of your medical bills, lost wages, costs of property repairs, and in some cases punitive damages. The best way to determine the value of your claim is to bring all the facts and bills to an experienced personal injury attorney.

2. Should I sign a medical and property damage releases from the insurance company adjuster without a lawyer?

When engaged in a personal injury claim it’s never a good idea to sign anything without your lawyer looking at it first. These releases can sometimes give insurance companies leverage and information you don’t want them to have.

3. If I don’t have health insurance can unpaid hospital bills hurt my credit?

Yes, unpaid medical bills can hurt your credit. That’s why we will communicate with the debt collectors to make sure they’re aware of your claim. Typically if you let them know that they will be paid out of your claim they’re willing to work with you. Keeping the debt collectors at bay helps you focus on the case and not on unpaid bills.

4. If my friend is liable for my injury can I be compensated without taking their money?

If your friend causes your injury we will most likely file the claim with their insurance company. This allows you to be compensated without bankrupting your friend and ruining your relationship.

5. What happens if my injury was caused by someone who doesn’t have car insurance?

Most insurance policies have uninsured motorists protection built in for this very reason. When something like this happens we can file the claim with your insurance company. Insurance companies are sometimes reluctant to pay out these types of claims, so using a lawyer will ensure your insurance company doesn’t take advantage of you.

If you have more questions about your personal injury claim, call the Law Offices of Flint & Soyars for a free case evaluation.

Stay Off Social Media When You’re Injured

Social Media has taken over our society. What used to be only for the young and hip is now for anyone with an internet connection. While social media offers a great way to keep in touch with old friends and stay up to date on events, lots of people who use social media are blissfully unaware of social media etiquette and socially acceptable rules. One rule most people are unaware of is to stay off social media when you’re injured.

If you get injured and are pursuing a personal injury case, it’s a good idea to stop all social media activity. Big insurance companies know how to do their research and dig up dirt on you. One of their first stops will be at your social media sites to see if they can catch you posting some incriminating evidence.

In your personal injury claim you’ll likely state that you are unable to work or enjoy physical activities you once did. If you’re claiming your injuries from a car wreck are stopping you from hiking and you post a picture of you climbing a fourteener in Colorado, you can bet the insurance company will snap a screenshot and use it in court against you.

It’s best to never assume private settings or filters will stop your posts from being seen. You should assume anything you post will be seen by the judge and the jury.

Even posts that appear to indicate you are still enjoying life despite your injury, can be used against you. On the other hand, posting obviously fake posts about being unhappy or inactive might seem like you’re purposely overdoing it to falsely build up your case. This is why it’s best just to go dark on social media while you’re in the middle of your personal injury case.

If you have any questions about the do’s and don’ts about personal injury cases, call the Law Offices of Flint & Soyars for a free case evaluation.

Can You Sue Uber?

In mid 2012 a new way of getting around started to catch on. It’s kind of like a taxi but with the convenience of an app and the novelty young millennials love. Ride sharing services like Uber and Lyft emerged as a dominate force most taxi services struggled to compete with. These companies were the first of their kind to truly catch fire and see considerable growth.

While this latest innovation was heralded as a marvelous combination of an age old service and modern tech, this new concept left legal experts and lawmakers concerned. These companies aren’t buying the cars and drivers aren’t technically licensed to be chauffeurs, so how do you regulate this new industry that seems to be growing at a record pace?

Uber maintains they are merely a tech company that creates a marketplace, not a transportation company. If this is true, then who is liable for any damage and injury caused by their drivers?

Since the explosion of the ridesharing industry, federal, state and even city lawmakers have been scrambling to solve this problem. Each state and city has different rules about what Uber and other ridesharing companies can do and where liability falls.

A few years ago an Uber driver hit and killed a six-year-old girl celebrating New Year’s Eve with her mom. As expected, Uber wanted nothing to do with the case. It claimed that since the driver was not currently on a fair and therefore not on the clock, no liability can be placed on the company.

Ridesharing companies want to enjoy freedoms that come with having an ambiguous legal status, but lawmakers are unlikely to let this happen much longer. The more incidents that will undoubtedly happen will only build more pressure to enforce regulations. If you have been injured by Uber, Lyft or any other ridesharing service call the personal injury experts at the Law Offices of Flint & Soyars.

Personal Injury Case Timeline Part II

Last week we began to look at the timeline of a personal injury case. We covered whom to call first, the investigation process and defined the maximum medical improvement point.  This week we’ll go over what happens between filing the lawsuit and the actual trial.

Filing the Lawsuit

Once your attorney has determined you have a valid case and you have hopefully reached the maximum medical improvement point, the formal paperwork will be filed for the lawsuit. Each state will have different wait times for when a case can go to trial, so this part of the timeline will vary depending on where you live. It’s important to keep in mind that each state also has a statute of limitation regarding when a lawsuit must be filed.

Discovery

The discovery process is when the case will really go into full swing. Each side will begin looking at each other’s arguments and claims. Most likely the plaintiff and the defendant will be interviewed, along with any pertinent witnesses. These depositions will then be thoroughly reviewed by each side’s attorneys.

Negotiations

Once everyone has been interviewed and all depositions have been reviewed the lawyers will typically try to reach a settlement. First they will try to work out a settlement by themselves and if this is unsuccessful they might take the case to a mediator. A mediator is an unbiased third party trained to resolve disputes outside of the courtroom.

Trial

If the parties are unable to reach a settlement using the mediator the suit will go to court. Once the case is in court it will be up to the judge and jury. Each state has different rules for how the case will play out in the courtroom.

If you have further questions about what will happen in your personal injury case call the Law Offices of Flint & Soyars for a free case evaluation.

 

New Personal Injury Payment Option

Often times when a plaintiff wins a personal injury case the waiting time to receive payment can be very stressful for the plaintiff. Not surprisingly, when large companies or insurance agencies lose personal injury cases they aren’t exactly eager to fork over the money.

Sometimes defendants will give the plaintiff a lowball settlement offer because they know the plaintiff needs money now and can’t afford to wait out a long trial in court. This effectively robs plaintiffs of money that is rightfully and legally theirs.

To stop this from happening a new start-up company called Mighty Group Inc. has raised venture capital to help plaintiffs in personal injury cases. Mighty Group created a marketplace in which reputable vendors bid against each other to lend a couple of thousand dollars to help plaintiffs make it through the trial.

When plaintiffs use this service they agree to pay back the money with some interest, if and when they receive their settlement from the defendants.

Giving cash advances to plaintiffs is not a new concept, but using a marketplace to create a biding war has potential to be very beneficial for plaintiffs.

The co-founder of Mighty Group, Joshua Schwadron, has a law degree from Emory University and has previously founded a legal funding company. Schwadron founded Mighty Group to help give power to plaintiffs and allow them to, “stay patient and wait for a fair settlement offer.”

The law firm of Flint & Soyars has 30 years of experience representing personal injury cases in the Ark-La-Tex region of southwest Arkansas, northwest Louisiana and northeast Texas. You will not have to pay any fees unless you collect money.

Premises Liability Overview

Premises Liability Overview

Generally speaking a premises liability case occurs when a plaintiff sustains an injury caused by an unsafe or dangerous premise owned by the defendant. There are a few exceptions, but the average premises liability case will have this structure.

Types of liabilities

There are many reasons a plaintiff may need to pursue a premises liability suit, all of which involve the defendant knowingly possessing property with unsafe conditions. Here is a list of common unsafe conditions:

· Slippery floors
· Potholes in streets or sidewalks
· Objects left on floors where they can be tripped over
· Unsafe store displays
· Missing rails on stairways
· Rotten wood on steps or porches
· Poor lighting in parking lots and building entryways
· Negligent security in apartments, parking lots and businesses
· Merchandise stacked on high shelves at big-box retailers
· Dog bites and animal attacks

What you need to prove
Injuries can be very expensive. An injury can cost a person fees from the doctor, lost income due to time away from work, and time spent learning to cope with the injury. In order for a plaintiff to successfully claim damages from the defendant the plaintiff must prove:

· Unsafe conditions- The plaintiff must first prove the there were in fact unsafe conditions present on the property of the defendant. Some unsafe conditions are simple, such as water on the bathroom floor, but others are more complicated.
· Awareness of the owner- Next the plaintiff will have to prove the owner of the property was aware of the unsafe condition or at least should have been aware.
· Failure to fix- Once it is established the owner was aware of the problem, the plaintiff must prove the owner neglected to fix the problem or provide adequate warning regarding the unsafe condition.
· Injury- Finally the plaintiff must prove the injury they received was caused by the unsafe condition.

The Texarkana attorneys at Flint & Soyars have more than 30 years of premises liability experience. If you’ve been injured in the Texarkana area call them today for a free consultation 888-793-5468.