With so much traffic clogging up the roads in big cities like San Diego it didn’t take long before Lyft and Uber establish their services in the city. They are friendlier versions of taxis and require a comradely relationship between the driver and passengers. They offer a cheaper service than taxis and if you want to use a vehicle your downloadable app will tell you which one is closest to you at the time.
You don’t need to pay cash as you can set up an account with your chosen provider who then deducts the cost of your ride after it’s over. This seems quite simple and very convenient if you need to get to some place in a hurry, or you know they will be no parking available to you at a particular place for your own car.
Are Uber and Lyft Drivers Actually Safe?
In a bid to ensure that a rider can trust their drivers Lyft at least has put their drivers through a screening process which includes:
In addition to this, because of the virtual nature of the service, riders are able to rate their ride experience and if the rating is too low the driver will be taken off the list.
Who pays compensation in an accident?
Lyft drivers aren’t immune from accidents, but even though they aren’t employed as such but are classed as independent contractors, Lyft insures every driver with a million dollar liability cover. The California Vehicle Code Section 5430 insists that on top of that there is underinsured/uninsured cover for one million dollars, just in case an accident happens and the at-fault driver in the other vehicle has no insurance.
If you are involved in an accident in a Lyft vehicle you can claim compensation for medical treatment, loss of earnings and pain and suffering. If the amount held under the Lyft insurance is not sufficient, you can claim from the driver’s insurance too, if he or she has liability cover. The $1 million in insurance coverage is applicable from the time the driver accepts your request for a ride request on until the driver completes the transaction on the app or the ride is complete, whichever comes last.
If the Uber/ Lyft driver was not at-fault you should be able to file a compensation claim against the other driver. San Diego drivers must carry insurance. But as no one can guarantee that any other driver has insurance many drivers do take out uninsured motorist cover.
Damages available in a San Diego Uber/Lyft accident
Hire an attorney to help you win compensation
You may think it sounds easy to get the compensation you deserve but insurers rarely want to pay up entitlements and can be very obstructive. They make it particularly difficult if you don’t have an experienced San Diego attorney to represent you such as Robert Hamparyan at the Hamparyan Injury Lawyers who has a vast amount of experience handling cases like yours.
If you or a member of your family has been injured in an Uber/ Lyft accident in San Diego don’t hesitate to book a free consultation at the Hamparyan Injury Lawyers. One of their attorneys will assess your eligibility for personal injury compensation and will work aggressively until a satisfactory settlement has been negotiated. If you are unable to come to the office because your injuries prevent you from doing so Robert will come to your home instead.
Many people who make the unfortunate mistake of taking up cigarette smoking when they are young are suddenly confronted with an addiction problem when they find it’s almost impossible to give up instantly or when they choose. Even frightening advertising and constant warnings about the illnesses that could develop if smoking is continued for long periods aren’t typically enough to dissuade smokers from kicking the habit. As a result e-cigarettes were born.
What is an e-cigarette?
If you don’t already know you can probably work out exactly what an e-cigarette is, especially if you know how hard it is to give up the habit of smoking once you have already started the habit. The key ingredient of an e-cigarette is typically nicotine. It’s the unnoticeable substance that causes your addiction. So e-cigarettes were born as it appeared that they were a good way of getting rid of harmful tobacco while offering the user the pleasurable drug effects of nicotine.
Do e-cigarettes really act as a good substitute for cigarettes?
Recent research has indicated that what comes out of these e-cigarettes is almost as dangerous as the products from tobacco based cigarettes themselves.
Risks from e-cigarette use
The sorts of known harm from this combination of products are:
E-Cigarette explosions are caused by what is called the atomizer or heating element. This heating device gets its power from a rechargeable lithium battery. This vaporizes a solution which starts out in liquid form and is made up of propylene glycol, vegetable glycerin and nicotine. It’s both the explosions and the combination of products found in the vaporized solution which can cause harm to users.
Nicotine poisoning real threat
There are 2 types of nicotine poisoning, one of which takes place within 15 minutes of exposure leading to vomiting. After an exposure of 30 minutes to 4 hours depression may be the result and even more exposure could lead to death suddenly if not treated. 50 to 60 mg could kill an adult.
Statistics of injuries from e-cigarettes
Looking at the United States alone, from 2009 to 2014, 25 e-cigarette users were harmed by an exploding e-cigarette. Doctors based at the University of Washington state that they are being confronted with at least 2 patients every month because of e-cigarette defects. Some of the clearest reasons identified for these sudden explosions are defects in the lithium ion batteries. Of course, not all explosions get reported, so this could be the tip of the iceberg.
There was a case recently of a Hollywood producer who while flying from Denver to LA found that an e-cigarette exploded without warning. There have been incidences of the outbreak of house fires leading to the complete destruction of homes with the cause linked to exploding e-cigarettes. In 2015, throughout the country at poison control centers, there were 1,073 nicotine over-exposures reported that were related to the use of vape fluids and electronic cigarettes. Most victims really believed that e-cigarettes were better for them than traditional cigarettes and their use wouldn’t inflict any damage.
In other incidences, the device has spontaneously exploded in the users’ hands or pockets leading to damaging injuries. This seems to be related to the fact that the batteries are cylindrical and when pressure builds in the battery quickly the e-cigarette becomes ruptured at its weakest point, propelling the battery so fast that it attains speeds similar to those found in a gun.
Types of injuries from a vape explosion include:
The manufacture of e-cigarettes: the key to the problem
It is quite normal to test products thoroughly before they are released out into the market. Unfortunately though, not all e-cigarette products are tested sufficiently and they haven’t necessarily been engineered well enough to eliminate the possibility of a serious health hazard emerging.
Poor quality batteries often used
Lithium-ion batteries are composed of layers of metallic cathode and anode material which are separated by a porous film. This porous film encases a liquid electrolyte made of lithium salts and an organic solvent placed in a cylindrical metal that is sealed to keep the liquid electrolyte sealed inside.
All electrolytes used in lithium-ion batteries are usually flammable and if a battery fails due to over-heating it can catch fire and explode suddenly. Over-charging or short circuiting or even heat from external sources can cause an explosion. E-cigarettes which are overcharged seem to be a common reason for overheating and explosions. Only too often there is an internal defect in the battery which causes an explosion unexpectedly. This only happens in poor quality, cheaply made batteries – not good quality ones.
Unfortunately, manufacturers and retailers may knowingly use poor quality batteries and put lives of consumers in danger. It is in these situations where victims are faced with huge medical bills, serious life-altering injuries and financial hardship from loss of earnings.
Victims injured by an e-cigarette may be entitled to compensation
It is a legal requirement that manufacturers ensure that products released on to the market are free from potential dangers. If an accident occurs which could have been prevented had the manufacturer been more careful, the victim may be entitled to file a personal injury compensation claim to cover the financial hardships caused by the injuries.
In Washington recently, 4 victims of injuries received from poorly designed e-cigarettes are filing lawsuits against manufacturers and retailers for injuries received which include 2nd and 3rd degree burns which have required endless amounts of reconstructive surgery to try to restore the effects of the damage. Class actions have also been filed in the state of California for the same reasons.
Don’t wait until it’s too late to hire an attorney
If you believe you have received life-threatening injuries from e-cigarette use don’t delay. Hire our personal injury law firm who will help to ensure you get the compensation you deserve. The amount calculated will cover the cost of medical treatment including cosmetic surgery if you have severe facial damage, loss of earnings and pain and suffering you have endured.
It often takes a lot for you as a parent to finally let go of your child when he or she has reached school age and you are no longer responsible throughout the day to meet everyday needs. The last thing you could ever imagine happening is your child getting injured while you are not present. Unfortunately this happens far too often so you cannot always be assured that your child is safe in your chosen school’s hands.
Typically, most schools have more than sufficient school yard protocols regarding their charges’ safety in place. School staff members go through enough training to minimize the chance of your child being injured. However, there are times when an accident or injury can unexpectedly take place. Your child may slip and fall on an object that shouldn’t have been there or another child could cause an injury through an aggressive action.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), has revealed that emergency rooms throughout the country treat a huge number of children (200,000 annually) for injuries that have taken place in the school yard. These statistics don’t include injuries that occur in sports.
If your child is injured and requires hospital treatment it can be daunting for you if you have to confront your child’s school board or principal because you believe that negligence on behalf of a member of staff caused the injury. You should not sit back and take the financial burden of an injury that you know wasn’t your child’s fault but seek the help from a personal injury attorney who will assess your chances of winning a compensation claim to cover the financial hardship you may have to bear.
Children Who are Most at Risk
The CDC recently indicated that the younger the child the greater the chance an injury is likely to take place in a school yard with the greatest incidence being among those aged 5 to 9. Girls have more chance of being injured than boys.
The Cause of School Yard Injuries
The sorts of hazards that children most often encounter, in winter at least, are those caused by excessive ice and snow in the yard. The school is responsible for removing any dangerous amounts of these substances to ensure the children can move around freely without being injured. If the school yard is not safe it is the school’s responsibility to ensure the children are unable to access the facility until it has been made safe to use.
Apart from slips and falls on ice and snow, equipment failure has been cited as a cause of accidents too. Schools often have trampolines, swings and seesaws to keep their children amused. However, if any of the equipment is faulty or has not received the necessary maintenance by school employees any injuries might be down to the school’s administration. Overall, 67% of injuries in school yards are caused by slips and falls and failure of yard equipment. There are also a number of injuries caused by children colliding while at play. Bullying and physical assaults have been on the increase in recent years in school yards leading to both mental and physical traumas. If these things happen staff paid to be supervisors may be liable for any injuries.
Sports injuries are far more common than you may think as when a young athlete is hit by another in a game they won’t speak out and often hide any injuries even serious ones like concussion. A recent children’s hospital in Ohio reported that fewer than 50% of athletes in high schools report their concussion. Additionally, when children are left to continue playing after an injury their coaches or schools could be held accountable due to negligence for not putting the welfare of their children first.
Signs of a School Yard Injury and What You Should Do
If you have detected that your child has been injured while at school you should ensure medical treatment is sought as soon as possible. Your child’s school may have contacted you about the injury. You should ensure that you keep records of the time and content of any phone calls related to your child’s injury and any correspondence either through email or U.S. post. This applies to bullying of your child too. You should be keeping an eye on your child to ensure no bullying is taking place as the school is responsible to ensure that your child is not injured either mentally or physically while under their care.
If one of your children has been injured at school and needs to receive medical treatment which keeps him or her away from the classroom for a while and you believe the school was negligent in failing to provide ‘’duty of care’’ you might be entitled to file a claim for compensation to cover the medical costs of an injury that was not your child’s fault.
You may have shortlisted a number of personal injury lawyers from either web searches or recommendations from family and friends. No one personal injury case is the same so you will have to do some of your own groundwork before reaching the point of hiring someone.
Experience is Vital When Choosing the Right Lawyer
You should check to see how much experience your short listed lawyers have. Experience can make or break a personal injury claim as well as determine the damages you receive. Selecting an enthusiastic, experienced lawyer in your type of injury will go a long way to ensure a settlement is reached.
If your case is likely to involve a large amount of money because your injuries are disabling and life-changing, you don’t want your case drawn out for years. If this happens it will not allow you or your family to benefit from the claim. In the meantime you have to pay for all your medical costs and rehab, all because you did not make a wise choice when choosing the right personal injury attorney.
Check for Successful Claims Reached by the Personal Injury Lawyer
One way of checking how good your shortlisted personal injury lawyers are is by checking the value of settlements they have won and how long it took them to reach the settlements. You certainly don’t want to choose a lawyer who has gone through the process of filing personal injury claims and lost them at the last minute. You need a lawyer who is born to succeed and testimonials from happy clients provide you with that sort of evidence. You should compare each lawyer to help you make a wise choice.
Asking Questions Will Help you Reach a Decision
There is nothing wrong with live discussions with your shortlisted lawyers. Give each of them a call and fire questions at them such as, what was your last successful personal injury settlement and how much did you win? A lawyer who doesn’t stumble with the answers should be promoted to the top of your list. Lawyers who won’t give you the time of day aren’t worth considering. In the long run it’s their loss and your gain. Don’t side-line the impact a successful claim will have on your life and this should help you arrive at a decision when choosing the best lawyer.
Cost Is Not Important When Choosing a Personal Injury Lawyer
Hiring a lawyer is not cheap in normal situations but personal injury law is different. You don’t normally need to worry about the cost of a personal injury lawyer as it is your legal right to be compensated for the financial burden caused by injuries that were not your fault.
Most lawyers work on a contingency fee basis which means you as a victim of a personal injury does not need to worry about paying upfront fees. This also means that the lawyer you choose will do his or her utmost to ensure a successful settlement. If this is not reached and the claim ends up in court the lawyer is compelled to pay any legal and court fees if the settlement request fails.
It is normal policy for a personal injury attorney to include his or her legal fees in any personal injury claim so that it is deducted from the settlement before it is paid out to you. You don’t need to compare fees when choosing the best personal injury lawyer, base your choice on who you think you can best communicate with and will win the best settlement in the shortest period of time.
Keep to the Statute of Limitations when Choosing a Personal Injury Attorney
Often with serious injuries it takes time for the victim to regain his or her senses and realize the true impact of the injuries. However, once you have recovered you shouldn’t wait too long before choosing a lawyer to file your personal injury claim. Most states have a statute of limitations restricting the time you are given from the onset of your injuries to the time of filing your personal injury claim and this is usually 2 to 3 years depending on the state. If you are suing a state organization the statute of limitations may even be only six months from the date of the injury.
Running away from a motor vehicle accident is an illegal act in California and in fact any other state. The California Vehicle Code Sections, 20001 and 20002 state that those involved in a motor vehicle accident where injury and property damage have taken place are required to stop and remain at the scene of the accident. They are required to provide their contact information to any other driver involved. If a vehicle is damaged and the owner is not present, the driver causing the damage is required by law to leave a note that can be seen easily with contact information.
Despite the legal requirements, hit and run accidents are common events. Every year in California, according to the California Highway Patrol, there are more than 14,000 injuries that have happened because of a hit and run incident. Added to this statistic is the fact that approximately 11% of crashes reported to police involve a hit and run driver and there are 1,500 fatalities in hit and run accidents annually. Pedestrians make up close to 60% of victims of this type of accident and 20% of pedestrian fatalities involve hit and run accident events.
Any Evidence is Useful in a Hit and Run Accident
In most hit and run accidents, it is usually difficult for a victim to identify the vehicle driver who caused the accident. If you were seriously injured, taking the license plate number, the make and model of the vehicle may have been impossible. However, this does not necessarily mean you are never able to get hold of any witnesses. If the accident took place in an urban area security cameras may have taken footage of the accident which may help to identify the driver. The police should be contacted as they may not have tried to search for and apprehend the driver unless you ask them to. They may have evidence on CCTV cameras with the license number plate of the offending vehicle.
Your Own Insurance May Cover You
If you find you are not able to establish the identity of the hit and run driver, it may still be possible to recover compensation through your own insurer. It is a legal requirement that insurance companies offer an auto policy cover for an uninsured motorist causing accident and injury.
If you chose this option when you took out your policy it may help you to get full compensation for the costs of your injuries. Coverage for an uninsured driver includes accidents caused by hit and run drivers. There are caps on the amount of money your insurer is required to pay you. In California, for example, this includes $15,000 for each person for bodily injury, $30,000 for the whole accident and only $3,500 for damage to property. You may get more if you had elected for a higher coverage rate for these types of accidents depending on the nature of damage and injury.
In addition, if you selected coverage for medical costs to cover you for any bodily injury, regardless of who is at fault, or vehicle damage as well, you may find you are able to use this cover to relieve your financial burden of your injuries.
You Will Need a Personal Injury Attorney
No insurer ever wants to settle, even if you are adequately insured and have paid all the necessary premiums up to the date of the hit and run accident. Many insurance adjusters spend a lot of time trying to reduce the value of your claim by saying the evidence provided is not sufficient to justify it.
A good personal injury attorney understands the tactics used by insurers and can present evidence and argument to convince the person or company to pay your entitlements. If you are a pedestrian who has been injured in a hit and run you should still consult a personal injury attorney who may be able to find witnesses who saw the accident and uncover any CCTV footage at your accident that may be reveal the identity of the driver that caused your injuries.
Typically, most personal injury claims are pursued in a civil court. They involve financial compensation for somebody who was injured in an accident due to the negligent actions of another person. This type of financial settlement for a personal injury is known as damages.
There are two parties involved in a damages claim. The plaintiff is the person injured while the defendant is the person or persons who allegedly caused the accident. Most personal injury settlements are for compensatory damages. As the name implies, these compensate the accident victim for the financial burden of the injuries.
The sorts of losses covered by compensatory damages include both property loss such as damage to an auto in an accident and the financial burden incurred by the plaintiff as a result of the injury. This could include hospital costs, loss of earnings while recovering, home care if required, missed opportunities, emotional suffering, trauma and pain from long-term injuries. Compensatory damages also include losses into the future such as prolonged medical treatment and care in the years ahead even if you never fully recover.
A Personal Injury Lawyer is Important
Personal injury law is complex. If you are injured in an accident, such as a car crash on a highway, a slip and fall in a shopping mall or you were hit by a falling object from a construction site, you should contact a personal injury lawyer. The layer will assess your eligibility to file a personal injury claim against the person, company or organization who caused your accident. Almost all accidents that are not the victim’s fault may be eligible for compensatory damages. An experienced personal injury lawyer has the knowledge and experience to negotiate the best possible damages settlement.
These do not always become part of a personal injury claim. When a civil court looks at the case and finds that the defendant caused the accident through negligence, punitive damages can be incorporated into the final settlement. This financial penalty directed at the defendant is aimed at deterring whoever was too blame from any further malicious behavior in the future that is considered morally reprehensible. Punitive damages normally becomes part of a settlement if a jury hearing a case against a defendant finds that the person brought about the injuries to the plaintiff intentionally, maliciously or due to reckless behavior.
How are Punitive Damages Calculated?
These are more difficult to evaluate compared to compensatory damages. The latter can be calculated based on documentary evidence such as medical reports and lost wages calculations.
However, with punitive damages there are a number of factors that are considered including:
There are other important factors, such as whether the defendant has acted in this way before and if he or she has ever tried to make amends for the damage that has been caused.
The reason for awarding punitive damages is to help the plaintiff return to the state he or she was in before the accident happened. This of course in the case of injuries that cause quadriplegia it’s impossible for the victim to restore his or her life to normal but the courts will go as far as they can in ensuring the victim’s life reaches as close to normality as is possible. Typically in California there is a cap on non economic damages. The cap is pegged at an amount a single digit multiple of the compensatory or economic damages. The multiple is determined by the court depending on an analysis of the factors listed above, but is never more than 9.
Personal injury law can at times be quite confusing. If you have been injured in any type of accident and it was not your fault, you shouldn’t wait any longer. Contact Robert Hamparyan at the Law Offices of Robert Hamparyan in San Diego, who will ensure you get the compensation you deserve.
Successful personal injury lawyers like Robert Hamparyan understand how to persuasively negotiate a fair personal injury claim with insurance adjusters who represent clients who have been blamed for causing personal injury.
In many ways, the negotiation process may seem rather similar to old-fashioned haggling at a market place. The plaintiff’s lawyer will have done a full costing to establish exactly what the injury has cost their client to date and how much it may cost in the future. This is particularly important if the accident victim is unlikely to fully recover, as ongoing medical support and treatment, as well as lost income, must be fully accounted for if the plaintiff is not to suffer financially.
Meanwhile, the insurer will make an attempt to keep the amount they may have to pay as little as possible. In fact, if there is any gap in the amount of supporting evidence then the insurer will usually try to get the claim dismissed altogether. The defendant may claim that he or she did not cause the injury or that the plaintiff’s injury was not the result of the accident (typically, it may be claimed that it was a prior injury), or that the amount asked for is unreasonable.
There will be several rounds of negotiations before a final settlement is agreed on, if at all. In most cases the settlement will take place without going to court. However, in a minority of cases with the defendant or their insurer playing hardball, the lawyer may decide to take the case to court.
What influences a claim award?
The likely success of the claim and the final amount awarded will depend on a number of different variables.
Limitations on Claim Awards in California
Every state handles personal injury claims slightly differently. If you are pursuing someone who you think has injured you through negligence, then you should be aware of the limitations imposed by California on how much you can claim and how long this can be after an accident has taken place. It is most likely that you have chosen an experienced personal injury lawyer to help you with your claim like Robert Hamparyan of the San Diego based Hamparyan Law Firm. He will be able to explain what these limitations are and suggest what you should demand that comply with California law yet answer your injury needs.
California imposes a cap on non-economic damages, such as pain and suffering, but does not do so for economic damages like medical expenses. The cap on non-economic damages is some single digit multiple of the amount claimed for economic damages.
To take an example, if the economic component of the claim is $40,000, and the multiple is 7, then the cap will be $280,000.
The other limitation is the period in which the plaintiff must make a claim after an injury. This is called the statute of limitations and is 2 years for private individuals or 6 months if the claim is against a government body.
In some accidents, it might happen that some degree of blame lies with the injured party. In California, the law is what is called ‘pure comparative negligence’. This means that the plaintiff is still allowed to make a claim even if they are partly to blame. The award will be based on a percentage, so, for example, if it is decided that the injured person was 40% to blame, then they will be awarded 40% of the claim amount asked for.
If you are seeking a personal injury lawyer in San Diego, you will find that Robert Hamparyan is both an experienced and dedicated personal injury lawyer. He works tirelessly to get the compensation you deserve and has won some outstanding awards for his clients.
If you have been involved in any type of accident and you believe you were not to blame, you may be entitled to file a personal injury claim against the person who caused your accident. In order to qualify, the injury typically must be serious enough that you required hospital treatment.
In other words, a scrape to a knee or elbow in a slip and fall may not be considered severe enough to warrant filing a personal injury claim. Most victims of accidents who are seriously injured and who require extensive hospital treatment, time off work and are financially disadvantaged because of the injuries will choose to hire a personal injury lawyer to help them file a personal injury compensation claim.
The sorts of accident events that may qualify for compensation include:
The role of an insurance company in a personal injury claim
The person/organization that will most likely have to pay when a successful personal injury claim is won is the insurer of the person found to be at-fault. This makes it even more important to hire a personal injury lawyer because insurers try to devalue a claim in order to avoid paying what you rightfully deserve. A good lawyer will argue persuasively on your behalf to get the amount that you are entitled to and covers your financial hardship as a result of an injury that was not your fault.
How will your personal injury lawyer calculate a fair amount?
There are a number of different components to consider when calculating personal injury claims, which are:
If you have a serious accident and you lose your ability to perform normal every day activities you may need a carer to help you survive. You are not responsible for the financial costs of this type of care and a personal injury lawyer will ensure the right calculation is made with respect to both previous and ongoing medical expenses as well as any additional care you may need. If you were in a job at the time of the injury your personal injury lawyer will study medical reports and physician’s comments to determine your recovery time and even if you are never likely to return to normal working life due to your injuries your financial loss will be included in any compensation calculation. Under California’s personal injury law there are two other components to a personal injury compensation calculation one of which is a financial amount in relation to pain and suffering caused by the accident and the other is punitive damages which can be included in a compensation package if there is proof beyond doubt that the defendant deliberately caused you injury. Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs could be regarded as negligent, as could reckless driving such as speeding and distractive driving.
Calculating comparative negligence
In California, the full responsibility for a victim’s injuries might not always lie with the person found to be at fault. If a defendant’s lawyer can somehow find even a small bit of evidence to show that you contributed to your own accident, you may have to forfeit a certain percentage of your settlement. For example, if the court finds that you were 10 percent to blame for your own accident, this is the percentage that will be deducted from the final settlement. It is in these sorts of situations that you cannot afford to be without an experienced personal injury attorney.
Time limits for settling personal injury compensation claims
Most states, including California, set time limits for filing a personal injury compensation claim. These are called statutes of limitations. If a private organisation or an individual caused your accident, you have 2 years to file that claim. If a state organization was found to be the cause of your accident, you have six months to file your claim. Your personal injury lawyer will ensure you file your claim on time.
If you are seeking a personal injury lawyer in San Diego, Robert Hamparyan is both an experienced and dedicated personal injury lawyer and works tirelessly to get the compensation you deserve. He also offers free consultations.