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Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Answer: Strict liability means the defendant is strictly (automatically) liable.

Most strict liability scenarios offer very few if any defenses. For example, dog owners are strictly liable for injuries their dogs inflict, such as dog bites.

The victim need not prove any negligence by the dog owner. The only two allowable defenses are provocation or trespassing.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Answer: Victims are entitled to be compensated for their property damage and related losses (rental, diminished value, loss of use, etc.); special damages (economic damages such as medical, mileage, lost wages, etc.); general damages (non-economic, such as pain &; suffering, etc.); and if applicable ... punitive damages (designed to punish the at-fault defendant to deter future willful conduct, like drunk driving).

Of course, the issue is whether the defendant has adequate liability and property coverage, and if not whether you have adequate UM, UIM, or collision/rental coverage.

Friday, August 22, 2014

After a car accident injury is when one should be going to a doctor, so as to document their complaints and initiate timely treatment.

Whether the injured person goes to their own doctor (their PCP or perhaps an orthopedist they've seen in the past), as opposed to a doctor that specializes in injury care is another question.

The answer probably depends on the injured person’s medical history, their history with their existing providers, and whether or not their existing provider(s) treat accident injuries/patients. Whether or not one has health insurance may play a factor.

If a person has pre-existing medical issues of a similar nature (similar to the injuries sustained in the subject accident injury), I think it helps to check in and be evaluated by a medical provider that knew you before the subject accident as they’ll be in the best position to opine as to whether there should be any allocation to your pre-existing conditions.

If the injured person was symptom and/or treatment free for a number of years preceding the subject accident, then it probably isn’t necessary to consult with existing medical providers before beginning a course of accident related treatment of one’s choosing.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

There are inherent court related deadlines in litigating a personal injury claim. These include deadlines by which to file an answer; deadlines by which to exchange initial disclosure statements.

In arbitration's, there are deadlines by which to conduct the arbitration hearing. In trials, there are deadlines by which one must certify being ready for trial.

 In trial, the parties propose a scheduling order approved by the judge, which sets out deadlines for all steps leading up to trial (deadlines to disclose expert and no-expert opinions, deadlines to propound discovery requests, deadlines by which to complete depositions and/or discovery, etc.).

A plaintiff’s attorney can try and meet of these deadlines so as to not have to ask for any extensions from opposing counsel.

Of course, meeting one’s deadlines will not prevent opposing counsel from asking for extensions (which they often do)

In litigation, the plaintiff is an active participant; answering written questions, making themselves available for deposition, etc. Prompt responses by the plaintiff can help speed along the process as well

No. There really isn't a "set" minimum as far as a personal injury settlement amount goes. There are many times an at-fault driver will admit negligence in causing a collision, but dispute causation - meaning they challenge the extent of the injury claim.

In what are categorized as low property damage claims, the adverse insurance carrier will often dispute that the injured party should have sustained any injury.

If there is a mechanism of injury (usually a medical or bio-mechanical determination), then a reasonable amount of treatment (which can vary on a case-by-case basis) and the reasonable cost of that care might well serve as the minimal amount of a personal injury settlement/recovery.