Personal Injury & Wrongful Death

Personal Injury & Wrongful Death Law

Personal Injury is the legal term referring to harm that affects an individual’s body, mind, or emotions, as opposed to damage inflicted upon property. The injury may be either physical or emotional, and it can arise from a variety of sources or types of conduct.

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Such harm can occur in a wide array of personal injury cases including, but not limited to:

Automobile/Motorcycle Accidents
Motor vehicle accidents occur daily. While some may only inflict minor damage to your vehicle, more serious accidents can cause catastrophic physical injuries or wrongful death. If you’ve been involved in a motor vehicle accident, here are some ways to take action:
1. Call for Help. Contact the police and any emergency services if there are any suspected injuries. It is important that the accident be documented with a police-generated accident report.
2. Contact a Lawyer. An attorney comfortable in handling auto accidents can advise you on the best course of action.
3. Do not admit fault. An admission may adversely affect insurance claims. It’s important to evaluate all of the information carefully with a lawyer before you speak with the other driver’s insurance agent.
4. Collect Information and Gather Witnesses. If you are able, collect contact information and insurance/vehicle information from all parties involved in the accident. The police accident report will also contain this information. Also, collect contact information of witnesses to the accident, especially if the witnesses cannot stay until the police arrive.
5. Damages. If the accident was not your fault, there may be insurance available to cover your damages. An experienced personal injury attorney will be able to determine which insurance policy will provide you with the best benefit given the facts of your situation. Your damages could include lost wages and benefits, medical and prescription expenses, transportation costs, pain and suffering, loss of society, companionship, and enjoyment of life. An attorney at MDA can help you collect the information necessary to submit your claim for damages to the insurance company.

Auto and Motorcycle Accident FAQ

Boating Accidents
The major causes of recreational boating accidents are:
• Reckless operation
• Driver inattention
• Speeding
• Inappropriate passenger or skier behavior
• Consumption of alcohol
The boating accident lawyers of MDA know how to investigate boating accidents and evaluate the validity of claims that arise from them. Their in-depth knowledge will make a difference for someone  seeking payment for injuries sustained in a boating accident.
Dog Bites

The Center for Disease Control reports that in the U.S. nearly 4.5 million people are bitten by dogs each year and the effects can be devastating, sometimes even lethal. In most cases, the dog owner will be held responsible for the incident. When held responsible, the owner is required to cover the cost of the victim’s damages, such as: medical expenses, time lost from work, scarring, and pain and suffering. The dog owner’s homeowner’s insurance will typically provide coverage for such damages. In cases in which the dog has bitten before, additional damages are recoverable.

Contacting an experienced attorney as soon as possible after the dog bite will preserve and protect your rights to claim liability and damages, and help you gain information on important rules and regulations like:
• Statutes of Limitations
• Comparative Negligence
• Contributory Negligence
• Personal Injuries
• Personal Injury Damages
There are many dog bite scenarios, and how they play out legally depends on certain factors. An experienced personal injury lawyer can navigate tricky liability and entitlement issues. Visit our blog for information on common dog bite cases:
Dog Bite FAQ

Workplace Injuries and Workers’ Compensation

Typically, an employer’s workers’ compensation insurance will cover medical expenses, scarring, loss of use, and lost wages related to injuries that occur on the job or in the workplace. Though workers’ compensation can provide money and benefits, without third party liability, it doesn’t offer much in the way of disability, and does nothing to compensate for pain and suffering.

If your on-the-job injury was caused by the negligence of a third party, then you may be able to bring your case outside the workers’ compensation system and sue such third party. For example:

-If you were injured because of your employer’s intentional or egregious conduct, then you may be able to sue your employer directly.
-If you were injured by a defective product or piece of machinery or equipment, then you may be able to sue the manufacturer of the product, machinery, or equipment.
-If you were injured by a toxic substance, then you may be able to sue the manufacturer of the substance.
-If your employer does not carry workers’ compensation insurance, then you may be able to sue your employer directly.

In addition, you may be eligible for Social Security Disability Insurance. An experienced workers’ compensation lawyer will work with your employer and their insurance company to provide you with the workers’ compensation you’re entitled to.
Worker’s Compensation FAQ

Product Liability
Product liability provides compensation to people who have been injured by a dangerous or defective product (including design, marketing, and manufacturing defects), including:
• Assembling Manufacturer
• Manufacturer of Component Parts
• Retailer
• Wholesaler
Contacting a lawyer to understand this nuanced law will ensure you get the compensation you deserve.
Product Liability FAQ
Premises Liability and Slip and Fall

When someone enters your property, they have a reasonable expectation that the property or business owner is properly maintaining the property in a safe condition. However, property or business owners will not necessarily always be held responsible for someone slipping or tripping on something that an ordinary person should expect to find on the property, or should see and avoid. Common sense tells us that we all have an obligation to watch what we are doing.

Liability depends on whether the property or business owner acted carefully to avoid the dangerous condition, and whether you were careless in not seeing or avoiding the dangerous condition.

Here are some general guidelines for determining liability in these types of cases:

-The owner or the owner’s employee must have known about the dangerous condition or surface but done nothing about it.
-The owner or the owner’s employee must have caused the dangerous condition or surface.
-The owner or owner’s employee should have known about the dangerous condition or surface because a reasonable person responsible for taking care of the property would have discovered and attended to or removed it.
Premises Liability FAQ

Wrongful Death

A wrongful death claim occurs when a person dies due to the legal fault of another person or entity. The survivors may be able to file a wrongful death lawsuit to seek compensation for their loss. The survivors or “real parties in interest” vary from state to state. Consult with the attorneys at MDA to determine what is allowed in your particular state.

Damages in wrongful death suits also vary from state to state. An experienced wrongful death attorney will be able to provide you with the particular damages allowable in your state. Expert witnesses, such as actuaries and economists, are used to calculate damages. Damages may include:
• Medical Expenses
• Funeral Expenses
• Loss of Anticipated Income or Employer Provided Benefits
• Punitive Damages
• Pain and Suffering
• Loss of Companionship
• Loss of Consortium

There is usually a relatively short period of time to file a wrongful death lawsuit, called the “statute of limitations.” Each state sets its own statute of limitations. In many states, the statute of limitations does not run until the harm is discovered, or could have been discovered.

Like medical malpractice, wrongful death involves complex and sensitive areas of the law. It’s best to consult with a qualified attorney before proceeding with a wrongful death claim.
Wrongful Death FAQ

Medical Malpractice
Medical malpractice is the improper, unskilled, or negligent treatment of a patient by a physician, dentist, nurse, pharmacist, or other health care professional.
There are state-to-state variations in terms of how medical malpractice cases are handled specifically, which is why it’s a good idea to immediately get an experienced attorney to assist you with your case so you receive the compensation you’re entitled to. The attorneys at MDA can help you quickly find out about the specific rules and procedures necessary to file your medical malpractice claim. Some of the most common types of medical malpractice are listed below:
Failure to Diagnose or Misdiagnosis
If a medical professional fails to diagnose a condition, or improperly diagnoses a condition, and the patient’s outcome would have been better than the one actually achieved if a competent doctor would have discovered the patient’s true illness or made a different diagnosis then you may have a medical malpractice claim. The doctor’s is required to be “reasonably skillful and careful” for the standards of treatment in your particular case.
Surgical Negligence
Surgical negligence occurs when a surgeon fails to exercise the same degree of skill or care as other competent surgeons under similar circumstances would have and as a result you suffered damages.
OB/Gyn Negligence
If a medical professional treats a patient in a way that no other competent doctor would, the patient could have a medical malpractice claim. Negligent prenatal care, improper delivery, or failure to perform a timely C-section causing injury to either both mother and/or child are all forms of negligence that may support a medical malpractice claim.
Nursing Home Negligence
Malpractice in nursing homes often involves negligent care or supervision to patient residents leading to accidents such as falls or burns and untreated medical conditions.
Medical Malpractice FAQ

Suffering a personal injury can be a traumatic and life-changing event with the potential to devastate a person’s health, relationships, and earning potential. As such, retaining an effective personal injury lawyer is very important. The right personal injury attorney can properly protect your rights as a victim and ensure that you and your family are fairly compensated for any resulting financial loss, pain, or suffering.

Martineau Davis & Associates has years of experience litigating accident and injury-related matters. Since our law firm is selective in the cases we choose to handle, our attorneys are able to devote the time and attention that is necessary to build a solid case for you. We are always prepared to fully litigate each case to a verdict, if necessary, to obtain the maximum award for you.