Consulting With A Brain Injury Lawyer

Every year nearly two million Americans sustain traumatic brain injuries due to accidents involving high impact. Of these cases, from 75,000-100,000 result in death, and over 500,000 incur injuries severe enough to require hospitalization. Our Miami personal injury law firm deals most commonly with these injuries in car accident and slip-and-fall claims. Most victims of high-impact accidents who have suffered traumatic brain injuries are under the impression that they fully understand the extent of their injuries, or lack thereof. However, it is very important to handle these claims properly and understand the scope of the injury before it is too late and the case has already reached a settlement. DETERMINING THE SEVERITY OF THE INJURY The Glasgow Coma Scale (GCS) was developed to allow medical professionals the ability to quantify brain injuries in acute-trauma patients. This scale is based on an assessment of visual, verbal, and motor responsiveness. The GCS generally provides an accurate indicator of long-term prognosis, particularly in cases of severe brain injury. Brain injuries are typically categorized as either mild, moderate, or severe. The injury is considered mild if the loss of consciousness lasts less than 30 minutes. While only 15% of brain injuries reported annually are considered mild, victims can suffer well over a year from side effects. Signs of a mild injury: Problems with coordination Excessive sleep or depression Changes in mood, violent outbursts Difficulty formulating thoughts or sentences, memory loss Sensory issues (loss of smell, bad taste in mouth, sensitivity to lights or sound, etc.) Nausea Seizures Victims who have experienced moderate to severe brain injuries often lose consciousness for more than an...

Traumatic Brain Injury on a Holland America Cruise Ship

Cruise lines and the lawyers who sue them are closely watching a recent verdict against Carnival’s Holland America, which just got hit by a huge decision in a passenger personal injury lawsuit that resulted in a $21.5-million-dollar judgment. Following a lengthy and hard-fought trial, a federal jury in Seattle, Washington, awarded $21.5 million in damages to an Illinois passenger who suffered a traumatic brain injury on a Holland America cruise ship while walking past an automatic sliding-glass door onboard back in 2011. The verdict included $16.5 million in punitive damages, which are special damages designed to punish the defendant. James Hausman, a 61-year-old resident of Springfield, Illinois, and his attorneys argued during a nine-day jury trial that dozens of other Holland America passengers were also injured by the sliding doors on Holland America cruise ships because of problems with the automatic  sensors, Holland America, which is wholly owned by Carnival Cruise Lines, the largest cruise ship company in the world, has denied the allegations and has already filed motions asking the Judge to reduce the judgment. In the alternative, Holland America has vowed to appeal the verdict. Video surveillance video (CCTV) shows Mr. Hausman walking through the automatic sliding glass doors, when they slammed him in the face.  He and his family were beginning an around-the-world cruise aboard the M/S Amsterdam. Holland America claims that Mr. Hausman simply walked into the closing doors, and therefore the incident was his fault.  The ship’s doctor diagnosed him with a concussion and allowed Mr. Hausman to complete the cruise. According to the injured passenger’s lawyers, diagnostic tests performed once he had returned...

Warning from Cruise Ship Injury Lawyers: Swim at Your Own Risk

Our cruise ship injury lawyers want to warn families about to take a cruise with their children to be extra careful to supervise them closely whenever they are using one of the ship’s swimming pools. This is especially important as virtually no cruise lines provide lifeguards. We find this extremely difficult to believe, especially in light of a number of recent tragedies that have killed and severely injured children who have drowned onboard cruise ships. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, death by drowning among children one to four accounts for more deaths than any other cause except birth defects. Yet currently no U.S. laws require cruise lines to provide lifeguards at their pools, and some of those ships carry hundreds or even thousands of children on every voyage. Boy Drowns on Norwegian Cruise Ship Our condolences go out to the family of a four-year-old boy who died aboard Norwegian Cruise Line’s Breakaway when he drowned in one of the ship’s swimming pools, off the coast of North Carolina. He and a six-year-old boy were airlifted to Carolina East Medical Center in New Bern with his grandmother and one of the ship’s nurses. He died on the way. The Breakaway is one of Norwegian’s newest mega cruise ships with 18 decks and the capacity to carry up to 4,000 passengers. The ship, based in New York City, has a Manhattan-inspired theme, several swimming pools, and a designated aqua park for young children. Its Splash Academy provides supervised swimming for children ages 3 to 17. It is unknown if these kids were signed into care at Splash...

Cruise Passenger Protection Act: Assaulted on a Cruise Ship

Last week I found myself sitting in a dank and moldy conference room located in a town in Puebla, Mexico. I was there to take the deposition of a former Royal Caribbean Cruise Line employee who inadvertently caused an accident earlier this year. That incident resulted in a serious brain injury to a nine-year-old passenger aboard the Monarch of the Seas cruise ship docked in Nassau, Bahamas.. When the Monarch of the Seas first set sail from France, it was one of the largest cruise ships in the world–able to carry nearly 3,000 passengers. In addition to an outdoor basketball court, where the accident happened, the ship’s facilities include a rock-climbing wall and two full-sized saltwater swimming pools. Just a few months after my client’s accident onboard the ship, it was sold to Pullmantur Cruises, a Spanish cruise line, and a subsidiary of Royal Caribbean. Para leer en español haga clic aquí. WHO MANDATES CRUISE SHIP PASSENGER SAFETY? The International Maritime Organization was created by the United Nations in 1948 to regulate safety at sea along with various organizations in each country with a port of call. This summer, the escalating wave of reported crimes aboard cruise ships finally caught the attention of Congress, when West Virginia Senator Jay Rockefeller introduced the Cruise Passenger Protection Act. CRIMINALLY ASSAULTED ON A CRUISE? According to a report released during the Senate’s Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee hearings, the number of alleged crimes cruise lines reported to the FBI since 2011 is 30 times higher than the number of crimes that the FBI is required to report publicly. Moreover, sex crimes committed against...

MRI in Personal Injury Claims: What Is It and Why Is It Important in Florida?

Dear Miami Personal Injury Lawyer: I recently had a car wreck after dropping my kids off at school.  It was not so serious, meaning, I was able to drive away from it, go to work and still pick my kids up later that afternoon.  Two or three days later my low back started to ache. My neighbor, JM Schwartz* is a chiropractor who said he could see me at his office over the weekend. He took some extras and told me that I needed to see him a couple of times a week.  He billed my auto insurance, I think, because he has never sent me a bill or even asked for money.  The pain has gotten a lot better, but I still kind of feel it every few days. He suggested a lawyer he knows Paul Roberts* and I went to see him because I thought maybe I should and maybe I could get some money for the hassle of it all. Para leer en español haga clic aquí. The first thing the lawyer asked me on the phone when I called to make the appointment was if I had an MRI. Why is that so important and why would that be the first thing he would want to know about my case? BTW (sic) I mentioned this to my neighbor and he said he would be happy to get one for me if that is something my lawyer wanted.  This all sounded kind of fishy, what do you recommend? Thank you,   M.P. Rodriguez.* Thank you Ms. Rodriguez,  I appreciate your confidence in seeking our help.  First I do...

Bicycle Verdict Reversed

As a bicycle injury lawyer Miami, FL, I have tried personal injury and medical malpractice jury civil trials across the State of Florida for more than 22 years.  And as in the recent trial of George Zimmerman, jurors are not always told only the facts of a given case in accordance with the Rules of Evidence. There are hundreds of rules and exceptions, but the basic concept boils down to the following: Is the alleged fact one that is more helpful or not for a juror to know in determining the truth, or as we lawyers are taught to argue, “Does the probative value outweigh the prejudice” of a given fact? One of the most debated and controversial issues as a personal injury lawyer Miami, FL  I see come up in most traffic accident claims in Florida involves the issue of collateral sources.  A collateral source set-off is the legal concept intended to prevent injured people from obtaining double payment for the same damages, usually medical expenses from two or more different sources—for example, making and getting a verdict for medical expenses in a car accident case from both the defendant and the injury victim’s own health insurance. I had imagined that virtually every possible combination of fact and law surrounding the concept of collateral sources had been litigated and ruled upon over the last 30 years. Recently, Florida’s 2nd District Court of Appeal faced a case of first impression, meaning an issue was presented for the very first time. A Florida man, John Joerg, a developmentally-disabled adult, sued State Farm for uninsured motorist insurance coverage after he was...
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