What Does a Judge do in a Personal Injury Case Trial?

The lawsuit process can be intimidating. When you’re injured and are considering filing a lawsuit, it’s hard to know where to begin. Even after hiring a lawyer and getting started, the process can be hard to figure out. What do you have to do? What does your lawyer do? What happens at trial? What happens between now and then?To help you understand the lawsuit process, let’s look at a one specific piece of the personal injury process: the judge’s role. Specifically, let’s look at what the judge will and won’t do if your case goes to trial.Judges, Cases and the LawIn a personal injury case, the judge serves as a trier of law. The trier of law is responsible for making a ruling over the legal issues brought up during the course of the trial.For example, a woman sues the driver of the car that struck her while she was riding a bike. Because the injured woman filed a lawsuit, it is up to her to prove that the other driver was at fault. …

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8 Practical Steps You Can Take if You’re Ever in a Car Crash

Almost all drivers will experience a fender bender, object collision, or a more significant car crash at some time in their lives. While car accidents can be very scary and stressful, you need to be prepared to take specific steps if you are ever involved in a crash. Here’s what you need to do:Step 1. Get help.If you or anyone else has been injured, you need to get help as soon as possible. If you have a cell phone you should call 911 and ask the operator to send an ambulance. If you don’t have a cell phone or are unable to move, ask the first person on the scene to call for help. If there is a crowd of people, single out one person and specifically ask him or her to call.Step 2. Make the area safe, if possible.In non-injury accidents that don’t result in significant damage to your vehicle, it’s best to move your car, truck, or motorcycle to a safe place. As long as the vehicle is operable, you should try to move it to the side of the road or somewhere else where it won’t be an obstruction to other motorists.Step 3. Exchange driver details.Once you are sure that everyone involved is fine and the area is safe, you should then talk to the other driver to obtain his or her insurance information. …

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National Safety Council Reports Thanksgiving One of the Most Dangerous Holidays

As millions of drivers leave work the day before Thanksgiving, highways across America will be filling with families and individuals heading home for the holiday.To remind drivers to remain cautious as they drive home from work and over the weekend, the National Safety Council (NSC) has released its Thanksgiving Day Holiday Period Traffic Fatality Estimate. Per the NSC the 2012 Thanksgiving Day holiday period begins at 6:00 p.m., Wednesday, November 21, and ends at 11:59 p.m., Sunday, November 25. The NSC estimate of traffic fatalities for this 4.25-day holiday period is 451 deaths. Nonfatal medically consulted injuries, i.e. injuries serious enough that a medical professional was consulted, are estimated at 48,300 with a range of 41,100 to 56,500.Further studies by the NSC have shown that seat belts, when used, are 45% effective in preventing fatalities among front-seat passenger car occupants. Based on this information the NSC estimates that 165 person’s lives may be saved this Thanksgiving Day holiday period because they will wear their safety belts and an additional 112 lives could be saved if all wore safety belts. Please drive safely and have healthy and happy Thanksgiving holiday.Driving Safety Tips:As traffic on the roads increases during the holidays, keep in mind the safety tips below.• Refrain from using your cell phone while driving• Put your cell phone on silent or in the glove box to avoid temptation• Safely pull over and put the vehicle in Park to take or make a call• Always wear a safety belt – every trip, every time• Make sure every passenger is wearing his or her safety belt before you begin your drive• Children should sit in the back and use the proper child safety seat or booster seat• Never leave a child or pet unattended in a vehicle, especially during hot weather• If you plan to drink, designate a non-drinking driver – NHTSA has launched its Fourth of• If there is a young driver in your family, strictly enforce a zero tolerance policy with alcohol – all states have a 21-year-old drinking age law• Never get in the car with an intoxicated driver• Avoid aggressive driving by keeping your emotions in check and focusing on your own driving• Don’t tailgate or flash your lights at another driverTags: driving, help, highway, injury, safety, tips

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Cell Phone Use and Its Impact on the Rate of Auto Accidents

Cell phones have ballooned in popularity over the last decade. Not surprisingly, so have concerns regarding distracted driving and the role that these ubiquitous electronic devices may have in causing a variety of motor vehicle-related accidents. A significant body of research – conducted under both experimental and on-the-road conditions – has demonstrated that using either hand-held cell phones or hands-free cell phone devices can lead to driving practices that can undermine safe driving. Unfortunately, the extent to which cell phone use while driving increases the risk of accidents has been difficult to determine, due in part to the fact that police crash reports are not reliable indicators of whether or not drivers were using a cell phone at the time a crash occurred.Nevertheless, a number of important studies have demonstrated that operating a cell phone while driving significantly increases the risk of a crash. A 1997 study published in the prestigious New England Journal of Medicine found that the risk of experiencing a collision while actively using a cell phone was four times higher than the risk when a phone was not actively being used. A more recent study published in the British Medical Journal also reached similar conclusions, demonstrating a four-fold increase in the risk of a crash when cell phones were used within the 10 minutes prior to a crash occurring. According to recent statistics published by the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), 13.5 million drivers are simultaneously using cell phones at any given time during the daylight hours. In addition, the NTSB documented that close to 3,100 roadway fatalities in 2010 involved distracted drivers. The National Safety Council estimated that 23% (1.3 million) of all crashes that occurred in 2011 involved the use of cell phones.Citing the epidemic magnitude of cell phone use while driving, legislators on both the federal and state levels have worked tirelessly for many years to pass bans on cell phone use while driving. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety states that as of October 2012, 10 states have enacted bans against talking on a hand-held cellphone while driving. …

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What Are Pain and Suffering Damages?

In a lot of cases where someone is involved in a car accident or suffers from some kind of injury, you might hear your attorney talk about “pain and suffering damages.” For a lot of people who don’t have a lot of knowledge about the law, this term can sound a little confusing. While it’s always best to talk to your attorney about any legal question you have, here is what you need to know about pain and suffering damages.DamagesIn the legal world, the word “damages” is just another way of saying money. More specifically, it’s money other people owe you because they caused you harm. For example, if you are involved in a car accident because someone else drove recklessly, that person may have to pay you money. Depending on how badly your car was damaged and whether you suffered an injury, the other driver may have to pay to both repair your car and compensate you for the injuries you received. The driver might also have to pay you because the accident left you in pain or prevented you from going to work and earning an income. All of these types of payments are referred to as damages.Pain and SufferingIn any case where someone is hurt, it’s often very easy to determine the price of property damage, medical costs, and lost wages. These types of damages are known as economic damages.Yet the courts also allow for non-economic damages, or as they are more commonly referred to, pain and suffering. These types of damages are not so easily calculated because there is no fixed dollar amount associated with them.Any time you’re hurt in an accident you might be entitled to recover pain and suffering damages because you’ve suffered pain, gone through emotional or psychological distress, have been disfigured, or have sustained injuries that have affected your ability to do things you like to do. If any of these situations occurred as a result of the accident or injury you sustained, and someone else is at fault, you can receive pain and suffering damages.Calculating the Cost of PainWhenever you sue for pain and suffering damages, the question of how much you are entitled to always arises. …

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