Posted on Tuesday, June 25th, 2019 at 8:22 pm
Texas likes to be known for its superlatives: “Everything is bigger in Texas” as the saying goes. Not everything that is bigger in Texas is quite so praiseworthy, though. The Lone Star state leads the country in deaths from crane accidents and there is speculation that the penalties for violations by crane operators and construction companies are just too weak to deter poor maintenance and inadequate supervision.
Most crane injuries and fatalities happen to workers on construction sites, but now and again a member of the public is affected. That’s just what happened last week in Dallas, when strong winds toppled a crane, killing a woman in her own apartment, injuring others and destroying homes. Maybe the fact that this was no-one directly involved with the operation of the crane who was affected it might just lead to tightening up on lax enforcement.
In the Dallas accident, there is no argument that exceptionally strong winds directly caused the collapse of the crane, which fell with such force that it crushed an apartment block in its path. The fatality was a 29 year old woman, Kiersten Smith. However, the blame for the accident and its effects cannot be solely aimed at the weather that day in Dallas. Texas, like many places in the U.S., is used to occasional very strong winds. Cranes are supposed to be designed to withstand such winds. One ex federal crane accident investigator mentioned after the Dallas crane collapse that cranes are built to withstand 140 mph winds. The highest recorded gust at Dallas airport the day the crane collapsed was 70 mph. Even allowing for higher gusts in the vicinity of the crane, this was still only half the designed safety limit.
The ex crane investigator said that there are precautions that can be taken when a crane operator knows that bad weather is imminent. The main precaution is to tie down or weigh down the boom of the crane so that it doesn’t topple backwards, which is what happened in Dallas. The weather forecast issued well before the weekend when the thunderstorm blew through was quite clear about the possibility of strong winds, but reportedly the crane was unattended all weekend.
The crane belonged to Bigge Crane & Rigging Co. Representatives from the company have issued their “thoughts and prayers” to those affected and have agreed to fully cooperate with investigators, but the question is whether anything will actually change.
North Texas, in particular, seems to lead the country in crane accident fatalities, although in the last five years news about serious crane accidents has been reported in many parts of the country, not just in Texas. Not all crane accidents are due to strong winds, either. There are different reasons for these accidents. A crane accident in Seattle in April this year killed two people who were working on it and injured two more. The crane reportedly collapsed as the crane crew was attempting to dismantle it. Another crane accident in New York recently took place in the morning rush hour. The crane actually sliced through an apartment building, like the Dallas crane accident, killing one person.
Lack of enforcement could be reason for crane operator negligence
Because there is no apparent common thread emerging in these crane accidents, some attorneys representing injured accident victims have come to the conclusion that the rapid expansion of the construction industry is leading to a lack of effective enforcement and lax control over crane maintenance. In 2017 alone, there were 77 inspections made by OSHA of crane maintenance on Texas worksites. 71% of 65 violations were reported to be serious, according to federal officials. Many of these violations were deliberate or repeated after previous inspections. Fines for crane fatalities have been pegged at only $10,000 per fatality where investigations found that the crane operator was at fault.
If you, or a loved one, is injured as a result of a crane accident in Texas, you will need a resourceful and determined accident attorney to help you pursue rightful compensation. Contact the Injury Lawyer San Antonio at 833-210-4878.
Posted on Friday, June 14th, 2019 at 3:31 pm
A car accident is a traumatic event that affects people in many ways. People react differently to them, with some having fractures and other injuries immediately it happens. With others, the lesions may not present themselves until later on after the accident. It may take even weeks, months or years to show. This may be stressful since you might have dismissed signing a settlement form with the insurance company of the driver at fault because the injuries were not there when it happened. If this happens to you, you might want to know what options for compensation are there and what course of action to take.
Types Of Pain That Are Delayed After An Accident
Once you have been involved in an accident, it is prudent to note that a headache may not be as normal as it was before. It may be something that you may need to watch out for since it may indicate signs of a severe injury that was not discovered before. These are some of the types of pain that should get immediate attention once you start experiencing them.
A neck injury, concussion or even blood clot can result in headaches or dizziness. You should pay attention to the location of the problem and its severity. A severe headache may also indicate a brain injury, especially if your head was hit violently in the accident. You should see a medical practitioner immediately you get this symptom, to rule out anything.
- Back Pain
Pain, especially in the lower back, may indicate an injury related to whiplash. It could also show signs of a sprain or muscle damage. If it comes with numbness or tingling, it could mean that you have pinched nerves.
- Pain In The Neck Or Shoulders
It could point to a herniated disc or even spinal injury. It could also be a symptom of whiplash. Once you experience this, you should have some tests done.
- Abdominal Pain
If left untreated, internal injuries can be fatal. Internal bleeding can cause dizziness and headaches.
- Emotional Distress
There are many physical symptoms that one may have after an accident. However, the emotional ones are much harder to detect and can be very traumatic. Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and some of the other psychological problems may appear way later after the accident. Below are some of the symptom of emotional distress that you should see a doctor immediately you notice them.
- Mood Swings
- You are having difficulty sleeping
- Changes in appetite
- Memory loss
- Loss of interest in things you loved doing
- Panic attacks
Seeking Medical Attention
Having delayed symptoms after an accident can be stressful since the insurers may be critical of the timing. Once you experience these symptoms, you should consult a doctor to do tests on you and see the extent of the injuries. Even though the accident was minor, seek medical help immediately to rule out anything. If you do not, the other side may claim that something happened in between the car accident and the injury. This may make it hard to prove that the accident caused the symptoms.
Get Yourself A Personal Injury Lawyer
Once you have seen your doctor, you should contact a personal injury lawyer to help you with your case. They will be able to negotiate with the insurers and also strengthen your claim. They will ensure that you are not unfairly penalized because the symptoms took too long to appear. They will also guide you on how to argue your case and what compensation you stand to get. Also, they will get an accurate estimate of the medical costs that may be incurred later if your condition will take long before it clears. They will also help build your case by using the medical experts to show that the injuries did not manifest until after the accident.
Having delayed injuries after a car accident can be frustrating for most people since they had thought that they were okay. Seeking compensation can be quite tricky since some of these injuries can take months before they show symptoms. It is therefore advised to get yourself a personal injury lawyer to ensure that the claims process goes on smoothly and you are compensated fairly.
Posted on Tuesday, May 21st, 2019 at 5:59 pm
Some people who have been struggling to stop smoking tobacco have turned to so called e-cigarettes, also known as vaping. E-cigarettes are touted as a safer alternative to the well known health dangers of long term smoking. However, e-cigarettes have their own risks as has been stated several times already by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The death of William Brown in Fort Worth earlier this year is just one example of what can happen when an e-cigarette user gets hold of a faulty pen.
The Fort Worth accident happened on January 27th this year. Brown had gone to a local vape store, apparently to ask for help with his vape pen, a brand called Mechanical Mod. The owner of the store declined to help him as he said that that type of vape pen was known to have faults. Not long after, Brown was seen clutching his throat and obviously in severe pain. The store owner called for emergency services who arrived swiftly and took Brown to a nearby hospital. Brown died two days later of a stroke that had been caused by an injury to his carotid artery. It appeared that the vape pen had exploded and a piece of the device had lodged in his neck, severing his carotid artery.
Battery faults singled out as cause of explosion accidents
This was not the only accident involving an exploding e-cigarette. There have been several others in other states, although as the FDA has noted, the explosions have not been common and it can be hard to be sure that a particular brand of e-cigarette may or may not be potentially deadly. The other accidents have all involved faults in the chargeable batteries that power the e-cigarette. The battery either gets so hot that it literally explodes under pressure or explodes during recharging. Readers may remember similar faults a couple of years ago with the Lithium ion rechargeable batteries installed in Samsung’s Galaxy Note 7 cell phones. These batteries caused several severe injuries at unexpected times, including on air flights, eventually leading to Samsung recalling the devices in September 2016.
One incident involving an e-cigarette last year involved the device catching fire when in someone’s pocket. In this case, it seems that it was the contact between the pen and loose change in the North Carolina man’s pocket that may have caused the fire. The victim in this case was severely burned. The man felt the cigarette burning in his pants pocket just before arriving at his home. He leapt out of the car and the cigarette then burst into flames and exploded with shrapnel hitting his face.
A report in July 2017 by the U.S. Fire Administration confirmed that most explosions had at that point mostly occurred when the e-cigarette was in someone’s pocket. The report said that although most of these explosions can be dealt with quite easily, some are potentially deadly.
E-cigarettes not just explosive but potentially toxic
The FDA says that e-cigarette use has exploded amongst younger people in particular. The dangers to users may on the whole be less than smoking tobacco, but they still exist, and not just because of the possibility of battery explosions. Some toxic substances that are known to be present in tobacco smoke are also present when inhaling e-cigarette fumes, although in reduced amounts. These substances are known to be carcinogenic. Added to that are the possible repercussions of faulty batteries or charging methods.
It has been suggested that battery problems can be minimized by carefully reading charging and handling instructions. Leaving them exposed to too much heat or enclosed in pockets for too long may exacerbate battery temperatures and lead to explosion. Part of the problem seems to be the number of different e-cigarettes on the market and the lack of proper regulation. It is just not known at this stage whether the possibility of explosion and fire is something shared by all e-cigarettes or only certain defective brands.
One thing is for sure. If e-cigarette use and vaping continues to expand without proper regulation, there will be more serious injuries and fatalities that will occur in the future. There is no excuse for manufacturing or distributing devices that have been known to have caused unexpected burns and lacerations from flying shrapnel. If this has happened to you, then you should contact a defective product lawyer in San Antonio as soon as you can to discuss what legal action you can take. Contact The Injury Lawyer San Antonio for professional and dedicated legal help at 833-210-4878.
Posted on Tuesday, May 14th, 2019 at 6:20 am
If you live in San Antonio, and you don’t know much about the local courthouses, you’ll want to find out more about them sooner rather than later. Being familiar with the local court buildings can save you a lot of trouble.
Bexar County Court House
This courthouse is located downtown San Antonio, and it is housed in a historic building. It is near Main Plaza and the Cathedral of San Fernando. The courthouse, which was designed by J. Riely Gordon, is considered to be an example of Romanesque Revival architecture.
The courthouse is located at 100 Dolorosa. It opened in 1896, and it is still frequently used today. The courthouse can be accessed by bus, and there is also parking available. On most days, the building is open until 5 PM. It is closed on all federal and state holidays.
The building is actually home to a number of courts, including the Bexar County District Court. Criminal cases usually take place here.
San Antonio Municipal Court
While Bexar County is the largest courthouse in San Antonio, many cases are also heard in the Municipal Courthouse. This courthouse is where a lot of common disputes are settled, including parking and speeding tickets. Because of this, the courthouse is typically very busy.
Although the courthouse has a website and a phone number, it can be difficult to get information from a city clerk over the phone. Instead, you will have to come to the courthouse in person if you need to talk to someone. The courthouse is located at 401 S Frio St.
City of Shavano Park Municipal Court
The Shavano Park courthouse is also located in San Antonio. This courthouse is at 900 Saddletree Ct. This is a smaller courthouse that is less prone to long wait times.
If you are due to appear in municipal court, you will have to figure out which courthouse you need to visit. Typically, San Antonio residents will be expected to visit the San Antonio courthouse, while residents of Shavano Park will be asked to visit this courthouse.
Bexar County Justices of the Peace
If you hope to see a Justice of the Peace, you don’t have to visit one of the larger courthouses in San Antonio. Instead, you can head to the Bandera Festival Shopping Center, where you can find Justices of the Peace. A number of matters can be settled here. For example, you can apply for a marriage license or pay a ticket.
The shopping center is located at 7723 Guilbeau Rd. This shopping center is easy to access, and there is plenty of parking available. If you visit the court at a busy time, you can expect to wait for as long as an hour.
If you live in the San Antonio area, you’ll want to make sure you are familiar with all of the courthouses in the area. Even if you stay on the right side of the law, you may have to appear at one of these buildings in the future.
Posted on Tuesday, May 7th, 2019 at 9:40 pm
In Texas, navigating through a personal injury claim can be quite difficult, both financially and emotionally. Many cases tend to take a lot of time to resolve, and it’s important to have an attorney that will be in your case for the long haul, and won’t settle quickly for a cheap amount.
To help make the process a bit more bearable, it’s important to understand the stages involved in a personal injury case, along with the work that your counsel will be doing to keep your case on the right track. The key to a fair and successful recovery is being patient all through to allow the case to play out.
Typically, Texas personal injury cases will go through 5 critical stages:
The litigation stage is often avoidable, though it’s the primary goal of your attorney to obtain the most favorable resolution for you. So, if there are inadequate settlement offers from the responsible party, your attorney might file a lawsuit and the litigation stage will run its course.
Here is a rundown of each of the 5 stages your case is likely to go through:
1. Treatment and Recovery
Immediate medical attention and treatment for your injuries is vital for your health and safety. The first thing that your attorney will prioritize is getting you back to 100% full health. As such, during this stage, you’ll see your physician and/or medical provider as regularly as needed, and the timeline will vary depending on your injuries.
It’s important to be patient during this stage and adhere to all of the treatment plans and prescriptions from your doctor. You also want to document the nature of your injuries after the accident, and all the expenses you have incurred as a result of the accident, including the prescriptions, medical bills, wheelchairs, artificial appliances, etc.
In case you’re unable to attend any of your doctor’s scheduled appointments, make sure you cancel timely, and then reschedule at your earliest convenience. Keep in mind that what your doctors write on your file can dramatically affect your case.
2. Summary Stage
When you’re fully recovered, the medical bills and records are collected from your medical providers. Additionally, your attorney will collect documentation for your lost wages, out-of-pocket expenses, and incidental expenses. When the necessary information is collected, a settlement packet will be submitted to the responsible party or their insurance company along with a demand letter.
In the vast majority of cases, the insurance company won’t settle the case until they receive a copy of all the medical bills and records along with lost wage information regarding the case of the injured party once they have fully recovered. The role of your attorney during this stage is gathering all of the necessary information and present it to the defendant.
During this stage, the lawyer can determine if you have a case or not, and will give you the bad news early enough.
3. Demands and Negotiation
Many smaller and less complicated personal injury claims are settled before a lawsuit is filed. If your attorney thinks that your case can be settled, they will make a demand to the party and fault, or their insurance company.
Alternatively, your lawyer will file the lawsuit. Generally, if the claim involves a claim of permanent impairment or injury, a good attorney won’t settle before filing suit. They will also not make a demand until you have recovered or reached a point of maximum medical improvement.
During this stage, the insurance company will make an offer of settlement. Your attorney will present you with the full details, and you have the option of accepting or declining the offer. Negotiations will continue until an acceptable offer is made. If the insurer accepts the demand, the case is officially settled, and from there, it proceeds to the disbursement stage. If they refuse to make a fair offer, your case proceeds to litigation.
Filing a lawsuit starts the clock running on when your case gets to trial. Your lawyer should provide you will the information on what to expect. Keep in mind that lawsuits take time, and you have to be patient all through the litigation.
The key here is to present the jury with a strong case and clear facts, which should help them render a fair verdict for you. Of course, this will be a team effort, and your help will be appreciated.
The final stage is disbursement. Once your case is settled, a check will be issued to both the attorney and the injured party. You’ll be contacted to avail yourself to the lawyer’s office to sign the checks and releases of the claims. All the checks will be written to pay the liens, medical bills, and even the attorney. With your check at hand, the case file will officially be close.
Posted on Saturday, April 27th, 2019 at 2:22 pm
Electric scooters have become popular all over America, including San Antonio and other large cities in the state. In many places, they have been encouraged by city authorities as a part of an approach to providing alternatives to fossil fuel powered transportation.
In San Antonio, there are currently nine electric scooter hire companies. There are around 12,000 scooters somewhere around the city at any one time, not all in action at once. The city has been grappling with how to deal with a vehicle that is neither a bicycle nor a motorcycle, but somewhere in between. There has been a pilot scheme in operation and the city council has made several rules for scooter use which it is hoped will help to eliminate some of the problems that they have presented.
One of the problems is a rash of accidents, some of them quite serious. Both scooter hire’s and pedestrians have been hurt. There are many reasons why the electric scooters have caused a whole new set of potential accident scenarios.
One reason is simply that the scooters are a relatively new technology and many people who pay to use them in the city are not familiar with the way they should be handled. Riders have fallen off when the scooter hits a bump, goes around a tight corner or does not respond to the use of the brakes fast enough.
The scooters have a speed limit of 15 mph. That makes them faster than the ordinary bicycle, but slower than the average motorized vehicle. If they are ridden on a sidewalk they are a potential accident risk to pedestrians or other electric scooter rides and cyclists. If they are ridden on a road, then there is a danger that the scooter rider may be a victim of an accident. The scooters are safest when ridden on purpose built or designated cycle lanes or paths, but there simply aren’t enough of them to satisfy the people who choose to hire them.
Another problem is that the scooter companies do not provide helmets. Those people who hire scooters do so for limited periods of time because of their convenience and speed getting around the city, but generally don’t carry a helmet around with them.
A prohibition on the use of scooters between 11 pm and 6 a.m. was ruled by the San Antonio City Council some time ago, which helps to eliminate the rate of accidents in the dark, but doesn’t totally exclude them.
There have been at least two deaths in Texas attributed to electric scooter accidents; one in Austin and another in Dallas. The rate of emergency callouts and ER visits was reported as having spiked by over 150 percent in Austin after electric scooters were first rolled out in that city.
Electric scooters are just as vulnerable as any two wheeled vehicles and a collision between a scooter rider and a pedestrian, cyclist or anything more solid often ends up with the scooter rider falling abruptly on to the path, sidewalk or roadway. A scooter defect that has not yet been reported in San Antonio, but has affected scooters in some other U.S. cities and overseas, causes the scooter’s wheels to lock up and throw its rider on to the ground. Typical scooter injuries are similar to bicycle accident injuries:
- head injuries including traumatic brain injury;
- bruises, cuts and more severe lacerations
- broken ribs;
- spinal injuries;
- facial injuries including loss of teeth.
Electric scooters and personal injury compensation
There are two main ways in which electric scooters are the subject of a personal injury claim. If you were hit by a negligent scooter rider, then you may have grounds for filing a claim against them. Note that it is unlikely that the scooter rider would have insurance to cover an injury that they may have caused, so the claim would be made against their assets.
The second type of claim would be one made by the scooter rider if hit by a negligent vehicle driver, or against the scooter hire company itself if the accident was caused by a defect in the scooter.
As the use of electric scooters becomes even more popular in San Antonio it is likely that the number of injuries related to this method of transportation will increase. If you have been injured in a scooter accident in or around the city, you should contact an experienced personal injury attorney in San Antonio as soon as your injuries allow you to do so. You can contact a San Antonio Lawyer for professional and dedicated legal help at 833-210-4878.
Posted on Sunday, April 21st, 2019 at 10:24 pm
The statute of limitations for car accidents determines the time frame for filing a case in a court of law. If the victim lives in Texas, he or she has two years from the day of the auto accident to file a case. The statute of limitations is relevant to auto accident lawsuits because the victim will always try to resolve the case by negotiating with the insurance provider. Negotiating with the insurance company doesn’t automatically put the statute of limitations on hold. If you are a victim of an auto accident in Texas, you should pay close attention to the statute of limitations. If not, you may not be able to file a case in a court of law in Texas. This article provides information on the statutes of limitations for Texas car accidents.
If you or someone in your family is injured due to a car accident in Texas, you should satisfy the requirements of civil law in a timely manner. The statute of limitations will come into effect after two years from the date of your accident. You cannot file a personal injury lawsuit in a Texas court of law after that. That’s why you need to closely work with a reputable personal injury lawyer in Texas to file an injury lawsuit. You and your attorney shouldn’t delay filing the case. The time limit doesn’t change whether you are the victim of the accident or the driver of the vehicle. On the other hand, the plaintiff can be a car driver, motorcyclist, bicyclist or pedestrian. Regardless of the role of the plaintiff, the time frame holds true.
The Texas Civil Practice and Remedies Code Section 16.003 states that a personal injury lawsuit should be filed within two years from the date of an auto accident. Anyone injured in an auto accident is considered the victim. A longer filing period is allowable only if someone dies in the accident. The victim’s family gets an extended period to file a lawsuit in case the individual dies as a result of the auto accident. In fact, the statute of limitations for wrongful death cases is still two years. But it will start on the day the victim is pronounced dead. This day can be different from the day the car accident actually occurred. Your personal injury attorney is the best person to advise you on what needs to be done after a car accident in Texas.
What You Need To Do After An Auto Accident In TX!
The first step after an auto accident in Texas is to contact the police. They will interview the participants in the accident and file a Crash Report (Form CR-2). This report is filed when the injuries or property damages of the accident exceed $1,000. If the accident results in a death, the CR-2 should be completed and submitted within ten days of the auto accident. Once the police are informed of the accident, the next step is to take stock of the injuries to you or the others involved in the accident. Call emergency assistance to attend to the injuries of the victims.
If you are in a position to gather information on the drivers involved in the accident, you should definitely do so. Write down their names, address, phone numbers, and insurance information. If there are eyewitnesses, get their names, addresses, and phone numbers. Make sure you collect as much evidence as possible if you are in a position to do so. Takes photos of the accident scene. Call your insurance provider and notify them of the accident. These are important things that you need to do in case you are involved in an auto accident in Texas.
Consult A Personal Injury Attorney!
Last but not least, you should consult with a personal injury attorney in San Antonio Texas. The lawyer should specialize in dealing with auto accident cases similar to yours. Most lawyers offer a free consultation session to give you an idea about the possibility of filing a case. Even if you could settle the matter by negotiating with your insurance provider, you should first consult with a personal injury lawyer. A reputable personal injury lawyer in Texas can help you get the maximum settlement to compensate for your injuries.
Posted on Saturday, March 30th, 2019 at 5:43 pm
It has taken years for Texas politicians to get their head around cell phone and driving legislation. There were attempts by one politician or another to restrict the use of cell phones while driving, but every time a bill was introduced it became defeated with opponents of legislation claiming that it would limit personal freedom. It wasn’t until September 2018 that House Bill 62 was finally passed. The law makes it illegal for anyone in Texas to use an electronic device to read, write or send messages while driving. Emergency use is the only exception.
It hasn’t been long since the bill was passed, but there is already some sound evidence that the change in the law has made a difference to crash fatalities. Prior to the law change, the number of accidents had been increasing year after year. What statistics that are available suggest that the increase was due to innovations in cell phone technology and the rise in use of social media making it more attractive for Texans to use their device wherever they are, including behind the wheel.
A survey in 2017 made by Cambridge Mobile Telematics revealed that a quarter of all motor vehicle accidents were caused by cell phone texting. It has also been reported that over 1,000 collisions on U.S. roads take place every day due to distracted driving, of which cell phone use is regarded as the most prevalent.
Until September last year, Texas was one of only four states that still allowed drivers to use cell phones, but no longer. How has this changed accident rates? According to the Insurance Council of Texas in its 2019 Annual Report, although the fatality rate had climbed 34% in the 9 years since 2010, there has been a 4% decrease in fatalities and pedestrian casualties since HB62 came into force.
Of course, analyzing accident causes like distracted driving can be problematic. How can you tell that a crash took place because someone was texting just before the crash took place, unless someone actually saw the driver, or the driver survived and admitted to using their phone? Some opponents of cell phone use legislation have claimed that restricting cell phone use won’t have much effect as it cannot be properly enforced.
The issue of unenforceability came out when HB62 was being debated in the Texas Senate. Senator Larry Taylor, for example, raised the example of using the cell phone as a navigational tool and for listening to music, both of which were exempted by the bill. Other Senate representatives were keen to counter this viewpoint, however. As Senator Joan Huffman said at the same hearing, if the law saved only one life, it would be worth it. Sen. Huffman said that when people know that what they are doing is against the law, they will still hesitate, even if it won’t stop all illegal behavior.
Two other similar laws have been passed in Texas before HB 62 was passed. One, HB 339 prevents any driver younger than 18 using any sort of wireless electronic device while driving, even hands free cell phone technology. The law was passed in response to the horrifying fatality rate amongst younger drivers in particular, most of which is ascribed to cell phone use. HB 55 stopped adult drivers from using hands-held devices of any type while in school crossing zones and bus drivers from using any device while minors are on board.
HB 62 might still prove to be not strong enough; such is the power of attraction of electronic gadgetry and the ease of communication it provides, so those statistics are going to be watched carefully over the next few years to make sure that the fatality and serious injury rates do continue to decline.
If you, or a member of your family, have been injured in a vehicle accident caused by a distracted driver, you have a right to claim compensation from that driver.
You should contact an experienced personal injury attorney in San Antonio as soon as your injuries allow you to do so. You can contact a San Antonio Lawyer for professional and dedicated legal help at 833-210-4878.
Posted on Tuesday, February 26th, 2019 at 9:36 pm
Every year, there are thousands of cases filed regarding defective product liability. Product liability means that the manufacturer, seller or company is held responsible for the manufacturing and distribution of defective products. An inherent defect in products causes damage to the consumers, consequently becoming the subject to the defective product liability claim. According to product liability law, once this claim is made, the company or manufacturer has to pay for compensation for the damage and loss caused by that defective product.
How a Product is claimed as Defective?
Claims regarding defective products are based on factors such as strict liability, negligence, or violation of warranty of fitness of the product. Although, products are considered tangible things, however, the purview of this claim has expanded to the intangibles, naturals, writings or real estate. This claim can be made against any party involved or relevant to the defective product:
- Assembler or installer
- Manufacturer of other parts of the products
- The Wholesaler
- The retailer or seller of the product
Regardless of the jurisdiction of the party, the plaintiff has to prove that the product is defective. There are three main categories of a defective product which will determine the validity of the claim:
Defect while Manufacturing the Product:
Most often the claims are made under this category. A claim about the defect in a product during manufacturing which has caused an injury to the consumer is appropriate. The product had already a flaw in the making at the factory which caused the damage.
For instance, if there is a bicycle with a weak chain or cracked frame, a defective batch of medicine with a harmful substance, or car with defective airbags or tires. In order to prove such cases, the injury should have occurred due to a manufacturing fault and not the defect that developed later on.
Defects in Designs of the Products:
Defects in design also cause injury and the subsequent claim will be made as the product was inherently hazardous. This claim will not be made given an error or mistake, instead, the whole range of the product is dangerous, regardless of the fact that the defective product was made according to the requirements.
For instance, the airbags do not protect completely, are too thin to absorb the impact of a crash or collision; or a batch of sunglasses which does not protect the eye from ultraviolet rays.
Not Providing Enough Instructions or Warnings:
If a person uses a product and gets injured because there was no sufficient warning regarding the usage of the product, the claim will be made under the category of failure to warn. Such claims arise when a product is dangerous in such a way which is not obvious nor there a warning about the potential danger involved in using it, or the consumer needs to take extra care to use the product and nothing such is mentioned in the instructions.
For instance, an oven is packaged without any sufficient instruction that the surface gets hot after a certain temperature. The injury in such cases must be the consequence of failure to warn.
While facing these claims, the manufacturer may raise the defense that the plaintiff may have altered the product which caused the harm or he or she has not identified the supplier which may have caused harm. In such complicated situations, it is important to hire the services of a competent product liability attorney who can fight to recover your compensation.
Posted on Sunday, February 24th, 2019 at 5:49 pm
Statutes of limitations are imposed in many areas of law. They vary from state to state and may be quite complex, as is certainly the case where they apply to birth injury claims. Basically, when it comes to making a personal injury or medical malpractice claim, the state’s statute of limitations determines when you can no longer make a valid claim. The reasoning behind this is to prevent courts from being clogged up with claims made many years after an event was alleged to have taken place. Although there are exceptions, the longer a claim is made after a supposed event, the less likely it can be proven, making the claim less likely to succeed. This can prolong the claim process which can also prolong the time taken in court if it comes to that.
In most states, personal injury claims made against private individuals or organizations are two to three years after an injury has occurred. The statute of limitations for claims against government entities, like cities, states or the federal government are typically shorter, often as little as 6 months or a year and the claim process is often more complex as well.
Exceptions to the statutes of limitations when an injury or illness is discovered later in life
Most states recognize there are exceptions to the general rules about time limits. For example, if someone works in a particular industry and eventually becomes sick, they may not realize that their sickness resulted from a period working in the industry until much later in life. This is typical for many cancers and diseases like mesothelioma, for example. In these cases, the law generally allows what is called a toll or extension of the statute of limitations so that the claimant can be able to make their claim within a set number of years after the ‘discovery’ of the disease, rather than after the exact point at which the disease occurred. In most cases, this would not be possible anyway s the damage would have been done over a prolonged period of time.
A similar extension of the normal statute of limitations applies to birth injury claims as well. Theoretically, if a birth injury occurs due to the incompetence or poor medical procedures, then the family should be able to make a claim within two years of the birth in Texas. This period may be different in other states. However, that assumes that whatever happened to the baby at birth was immediately obvious. In some cases, the effects of poor procedures may not be apparent until much later in life. There may be no recognition of the effects of a birth injury, for example, until a child becomes a teenager. By that time, the statute of limitations has long passed and without an exception to the statute, it would become impossible for that child to receive compensation from the medical institution responsible for the injury.
Extension of the normal statute of limitations for some birth injury claims
In Texas, the statute is modified to take this into account in a modified version of the ‘discovery’ extension.’ A child has two years after they become 18 to make a birth injury claim a long as the claim is made against a privately owned and run medical facility or against a private individual medical professional.
Claims against a government medical facility
The law is different when it comes to birth injury claims against a government owned or run medical facility or a military hospital run by the federal government. The statute of limitations may be as little as one year after the discovery of the injury to file an administrative claim against the relevant agency.
As the statute of limitations is so important when it comes to making a personal injury claim or medical malpractice claim it is vital that you contact an experienced personal injury attorney as soon as a birth injury or other medical incident is recognized. You can contact a San Antonio Lawyer for professional and dedicated legal help at 833-210-4878.