Saturday, December 11, 2010

Expert Witnesses for your Injury Case

Although many cases settle out of court, we at von Magdenko & Associates, PLLC, are prepared to go to court, to fight for what you deserve. If your case does not settle and you need to file a lawsuit. One of the most important parts of your case, is having an "Expert" testify on your case. There are two major Experts that your Las Vegas Personal Injury Lawyer may retain.

The first major Expert, may be one in a specific field of expertise for how you sustained your accident. For example, if you were injured as a result of a defective product, your Las Vegas Accident Lawyer would retain an Expert Engineer to help prove your case. The Expert Engineer would review the case, prepare a report and provide testimony on their findings to support your case.

The second major type of Expert your Las Vegas Injury Attorney may retain, is an Expert Economist. If you are so severely injured that you can no longer work, your past lost wages and loss of what is called "earning capacity" i.e. what you would have made in the future, had the Las Vegas accident had not occurred, would be addressed by the Expert Economist. Next time we will discuss why it is important to keep your medical appointments.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Do Not Accept Offers from Insurance Companies

Insurance companies are around to one thing: make money. A very common situation playing out today is that the insurance company might offer you a couple thousand dollars right after your accident. When the offer is made, you might think that it is a great idea to accept a couple thousand dollars right now. The economy is tough right now. Rent might be due. You think that your neck is hurting, but it's no big deal, a couple grand is a lot of money. One of things that might be running through your mind after have been injured in a Las Vegas Accident is whether you need a Las Vegas Injury Attorney. If you accept the money the insurance company is dangling in your face, you reason that you do not need a Personal Injury Las Vegas Lawyer.

You accept the money. But, you pain does not go away. Best case scenario, you have health insurance. So, you get a scan done of your neck and find out that your neck is messed up from the accident and your pain will not get any better without surgery and will probably never be pain free. Worst case scenario, you do not have health insurance and you live with your neck pain for the rest of your life, making the insurance company very happy they gave you such little money, signing away your rights. Your Las Vegas Accident Attorney will make sure that you are given a fair amount of money to compensate you for your injuries and if there is enough insurance coverage, ensure that you have money available for future medical care. The lesson is to make sure that you contact your Las Vegas Personal Injury Lawyer immediately after your accident.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Personal Injury: Living Out of State

Las Vegas is an exciting city and a vacation destination for many people. Unfortunately, while visiting Las Vegas, you may be involved in a Las Vegas Injury Accident. Commons types of Las Vegas Injury Accidents that vacationers are involved in, occur when they slip and fall at a local Las Vegas casino, are in a car accident, while in a rental car or while riding once of Las Vegas' area buses. A common question asked of people who live in other states, is whether they will have to return to Las Vegas for their Las Vegas Personal Injury case. Many cases do settle out of court. So, if your case is one that settles out of court, you will not have to come to Las Vegas, as everything can be handled by your Las Vegas Personal Injury Attorney.

However, if a lawsuit is required to get the fair amount for your case, your Las Vegas Injury Attorney will tell you that you may have to come to Las Vegas. If you live out of state, will likely be required to travel to Las Vegas to personally give what is called a "deposition". A deposition is simply a statement under oath. Although you could give a formal statement over the telephone, the Las Vegas courts generally require that you give your statement in person, to allow the other side to meet you. Many cases settle sometime after your deposition is given. However, your Las Vegas Injury Attorney will tell you that if your case does not settle at this time, you will be required to appear at an Arbitration (a private trial) or Trial. In both cases, the person making the decision on your case will want to personally hear what happened to you in your Las Vegas Accident.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Personal Injury: Paying for your Medical Treatment

A common question many people have for their Las Vegas Injury Lawyer after they are in an a Las Vegas Car Accident, is how they are going to pay for their medical treatment. If you have health insurance, you can use your health insurance to pay for your medical bills, related to your Las Vegas Car Accident. However, some people do not have health insurance and they wonder how they are going to pay their medical bills.

If you do not have health insurance, your Injury Lawyer in Las Vegas will direct you to doctors who treat Las Vegas Car Accidents through what is called, a medical "lien". If you are treated through a lien, you sign an agreement with your doctor, stating that your doctor will be paid out of the proceeds of your Las Vegas Personal Injury case. So, there is no out of pocket expense to you. Once you case is settled or resolved, your Las Vegas Car Accident Attorney will directly pay all of your medical bills through your settlement proceeds.

Some people have Medicare or receive Nevada state health benefits. If you receive your health care through one of these programs, your Las Vegas Car Accident Attorney will tell you that it may be better not to use these programs and instead simply use a lien to pay for your medical treatment. In the end, the most important point to keep in mind that your treatment and healing are the most important parts of your Las Vegas Injury case. You should always keep your Las Vegas Personal Injury Lawyer updated of your treatment and talk to your Las Vegas Personal Injury Lawyer anytime you have questions concerning your medical treatment.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Personal Injury: Talking to Your Las Vegas Car Accident Lawyer

Communication with your Las Vegas Car Accident Lawyer is at the heart of your case. To make sure you are receiving the care you need and that you doing are everything possible for your case, you must call, email or set up appointments with your Las Vegas Car Accident Lawyer, to discuss how your treatment is going or if you may need a different type of treatment. In addition, your Las Vegas Car Accident Lawyer be receiving updates from your doctors to make sure you are getting the care you need and that you are improving with treatment.

Another important point to keep in mind, is that your Las Vegas Car Accident Lawyer must always be able to get a hold of you. So, if you are planning to move, change your email or change your phone number, you need to tell your Las Vegas Injury Attorney, before you do so. That way, your Las Vegas Personal Injury Attorney can reach you at all times. In our next discussion, we will talk about how your medical bills get paid in your Las Vegas Personal Injury case.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Personal Injury: Car repair and Car Rental

Immediately after a Las Vegas car accident, the one of the first questions you may have for your Las Vegas Car Accident Lawyer is how you are going to get your car fixed. After you call your Las Vegas Car Accident Lawyer, they will notify the insurance company that they can contact you directly to view your car, take pictures and coordinate the repair of your car. At that time, you will also be able to drive a rental car until your car is repaired. Of course, if you car was totaled in your Las Vegas car accident, then the insurance company will normally pay Kelly Blue Book value for your car.

Your Las Vegas Personal Injury Attorney will tell you that you may experience some frustration during this time period, since every hour you are without a car, affects your life greatly. But, your car issues are usually resolved smoothly and without too much delay. If you do experience problems, please contact your Las Vegas Car Accident Lawyer to discuss your issue in more detail and to potentially resolve the issue sooner. Next time, we will discuss other areas in which you will need to contact your Las Vegas Car Accident Lawyer to make sure you are getting the best possible representation and care you need.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Personal Injury: Time Missed from Work

One of the hardest parts of being injured in an accident is the time you may have to miss from work. At the start of your case, if you need to be off work for an extended period of time, your Las Vegas Car Accident Lawyer will tell you to that you need to have your doctor give you an "off work slip", documenting your need to be off work. If you have a very labor intensive job, requiring a lot of lifting or carrying, your Las Vegas Car Accident Lawyer and doctor will let you know that by engaging in those activities, you may delay healing and may prevent a full recovery from your injuries. Also, an "off work slip" is necessary to prove your need to be off work. So, if you take off from work without a doctor's note saying you needed to be off work, you will likely not get the money you missed from work.

Another issue that comes up in the area of missing work due to your injuries, is when someone is salaried. There is a rule in Las Vegas Personal Injury cases called the "Collateral Source Rule". When it comes to your time lost from work, it means that whether you are salaried or not, does not matter, you are still entitled to compensation for the time lost at work. All you need is the note from your doctor and the note from your company stating your rate of pay and the days you missed. Later on, your Las Vegas Car Accident Lawyer will discuss the more serious consequences when you have suffered an injury that prevents you from working at your normal job.

Monday, May 31, 2010

Different types of Las Vegas Personal Injury Cases

In looking for a Las Vegas Personal Injury Lawyer, you need to know the difference between similar types of lawyers. If you are injured at work, you will need two different lawyers, one for your Las Vegas Personal Injury case and the second for your employment related case. In the employment related case, you will need, what we call in the legal field, a "Worker's Compensation" attorney. The reason for that, is because different laws and procedures govern employment related cases. But, since your case has two parts, you need two lawyers. Although some Las Vegas Lawyers do both areas of law, I recommend using two different lawyers for your case, so you can have an expert in each field.

The second type of case that is typically confused with personal injury cases in the general legal sense is when you are injured as a result of the actions of your doctor. Those types of cases are referred to in what I like to call the "legal world" (as opposed to the "real world", as "Medical Malpractice" cases. In that instance you only need one Las Vegas attorney, one whose specialty is in medical malpractice. Although some Las Vegas Lawyers do both personal injury and medical malpractice, I again recommend hiring a Las Vegas Attorney who specializes in medical malpractice, if you were injured as a result of your doctor's actions.

In the end, you want the best possible Las Vegas Personal Injury Attorney for your case. You would not go to the same doctor to deliver a baby and do brain surgery! So, select different Las Vegas lawyers, for your particular needs.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

How do I choose a Las Vegas Personal Injury and Car Accident Attorney?

Many people do not personally know a lawyer let alone a personal injury lawyer. Even if you do know a great lawyer, if they are not a personal injury lawyer, do not hire them for your Las Vegas personal injury case. The example I give to people, is that while you may know a wonderful brain surgeon, you would not want that doctor delivering your baby!

I know what you are thinking: How do I go about choosing a Las Vegas personal injury lawyer? The answer: Ask your prospective Las Vegas personal injury lawyer how many years have they been practicing in the field of personal injury. They may have a decade of experience, but if it is not in the personal injury and car accidents realm, do not hire them for your personal injury case.

Another very important question to ask is the number of Las Vegas personal injury cases they have handled. It may be great that they have been “doing” personal injury for 10 years, but if they have only handled 5 accident cases, you may not want them doing further experimentation on your case. In a related vein, you should ask your potential Las Vegas personal injury attorney, what percentage of their current practice is related to injury cases. You want an attorney whose law practice is one third to 100% personal injury. Next time, we will talk about other areas related to personal injury, but which are really separate areas of practice: medical malpractice and worker’s compensation cases.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Car Accidents: Lawsuits

If the insurance company will not give a reasonable settlement offer to your Las Vegas personal injury lawyer, then your lawyer will file a lawsuit against the person you caused your injury. In Las Vegas, Nevada, there are two paths that your lawsuit can take. The first potential path is for larger cases, where if the insurance company is being unreasonable with your Las Vegas car accident lawyer, your lawyer will take your case to the jury.

The other potential path is reserved for small to medium sized cases. In the second potential path, your case will be put into Nevada’s non-binding Arbitration program. In the Arbitration program, an Arbitrator, essentially a private judge, will oversee your case. Once an Arbitrator is appointed, your Las Vegas accident lawyer will meet with the attorney hired by the insurance company and devise a discovery plan (i.e. let the other side discover what your case is about, the treatment you received and your injuries). An Arbitration Hearing date will also be selected, which will be sometime within 6 months after the Arbitrator came into your case. An Arbitration Hearing is an informal hearing on the matter, in the Arbitrator’s conference room, where you get to tell the Arbitrator what happen in the Las Vegas accident and how it affected you. Thereafter, the Arbitrator will render a non-binding decision on your case. If either party is dissatisfied with the Arbitrator’s decision, they can have a jury trial on the issues (putting you back on path No. 1). However, after having an opportunity to review your case in full the insurance company’s lawyer may issue a settlement offer to potentially resolve your case, prior to the arbitration hearing going forward.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Car Accidents: Recorded Statement

As part of the settlement process with the insurance company, they may request that your recorded statement be taken. Do not worry, your Las Vegas accident attorney will be with you every step of the way and explain everything to you. The recorded statement will usually be taken in your accident lawyers’ office, with your accident lawyer present. A day or so before your recorded statement is set to take place, your accident lawyer will go over the potential questions which may be asked during the recorded statement session. A recorded statement is simply your account of what happened in the accident. A representative from the insurance company will ask you questions related to your Las Vegas car accident. As such, you may likely be asked to tell your story of how the Las Vegas auto accident took place, what damages to your car were present, what injuries you sustained and what treatment you received. A booklet containing all of the questions asked, together with your answers will be prepared by the insurance company and forwarded to your accident lawyer. At that time, you may review the questions and your answers.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Car Accident: Settlement Negotiations

The settlement process is probably one of the most exciting, yet potentially frustrating times in your case. What may help, is to remember that the insurance company is looking out for their best interest, not yours. That is why you decided to hire a Las Vegas accident lawyer, to aggressively represent your interests and who would put your own interests first. What usually happens is that the insurance company may offer to settle your case for an amount so low, that you are insulted. Typically, the first offer the insurance company gives to your Las Vegas car accident lawyer is so low, it does not ever cover the costs of your medical bills. Do not worry though, your Las Vegas car accident attorney has participated in hundreds of settlements and will fight to get you the maximum amount that your case is worth. Your accident lawyer in Las Vegas will issue a reasonable counteroffer to the insurance company’s initial offer and will not settle your case until a reasonable offer from the insurance company is received.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Car Accident: Settlement

One of the major purposes of this blog is to answer your questions concerning your personal injury case. A very common question your Las Vegas accident lawyer gets is how long will it take to settle my case? The answer to that question, depends in large part to how long it takes you get better. Generally speaking, if the insurance company accepts the claim and is reasonable, you case can settle within a few months of you stopping treatment. However, many times, the insurance company denies the claim or is being unreasonable. That is why you hired an accident lawyer in the first place, to be your advocate. If the insurance company does not offer a reasonable settlement, in a timely manner, your Las Vegas auto accident attorney will be aggressive and file a lawsuit against the person who caused your injuries. A lawsuit typically lasts between 9 months and 2 years. Of course, the more injuries you have sustained, generally the longer it takes to fully resolve your case. Rest assured that your Las Vegas car accident attorney will fight so you receive the maximum settlement possible. Additionally, you Las Vegas injury lawyer will go to trial for you.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Car Accident: Surgery

Surgery is one of the most invasive types of treatment you may undergo after being in a car accident. You may not want to have surgery, but after exhausting all of the alternatives and fully discussing the matter with your Las Vegas car accident attorney and doctor, it may be the best option for you. It is important to note that your Las Vegas auto accident attorney will make sure that you get all of the treatment you need, including surgery, without any out of pocket expense on your part. So, all you have to think about is getting better.

The first procedure which may be discussed is a Diskectomy. This involves removal of the herniated portion of a disk to relieve irritation and inflammation of a nerve. It's done as an open surgery and typically involves full or partial removal of the back portion of a vertebra (lamina) to access the ruptured disc.

The second type of procedure you may hear about is a Laminectomy. This procedure involves the removal of the bone overlying the spinal canal. It enlarges the spinal canal and is performed to relieve nerve pressure caused by spinal stenosis, a type of narrowing of your spinal column.

A third type of common surgery is a Fusion. Spinal fusion permanently connects two or more bones in your spine. It can relieve pain by adding stability to a spinal fracture. It is occasionally used to eliminate painful motion between vertebrae that can result from a degenerated or injured discs. One problem with a fusion, is that it may make the discs above and below the fused discs weaker. However, the pros and cons of the procedure will be discussed in detail with your Las Vegas accident lawyer and doctor, before you make a decision on how to proceed.

Lastly, implanted artificial discs are a treatment alternative to spinal fusion for painful movement between two vertebrae due to a degenerated or injured disc. These relatively new devices are still being studied, however, so it's not yet clear what role they might play in treating spinal disc disease.
These are just some of the surgery types you may discuss with your accident lawyer and doctor. However, you may not need surgery right now, but may need it the future. Your Las Vegas car accident lawyer will make sure you have the money you need to pay for any surgery you may need in the future.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Car Accident: Pain Management Treatment

Once you have sought urgent care or emergency room treatment, have seen you primary doctor who has coordinated all of your care, including chiropractic care, physical therapy and any diagnostic testing, you may need additional treatment, if your pain still will not go away. The additional treatment your Las Vegas injury lawyer and doctor may recommend is pain management. Pain management may consist of injections in your neck or back to stop the pain at its source. A common type of injection is an epidural steroid injection, which can alleviate your pain for up to weeks at a time. A type of typical pain management treatment which you may undergo, after talking it over with your doctor and Las Vegas personal injury lawyer, is a rhizotomy. Rhizotomy is a medical procedure where the nerves are burned, to inhibit the sensation of pain from reaching your brain. Many of your Las Vegas car accident lawyer clients choose rhizotomy, so they can avoid taking pain medication daily. If you have tried all of the above treatments and you still are getting better, then surgery may be the best alternative for you. Next time, we will discuss types of surgery you may undergo.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Car Accident: Diagnostic Testing

There are three very common types of diagnostic testing that you may undergo after your Las Vegas car accident. Your Las Vegas car accident attorney and the physicians she works with are very knowledgeable in the types of testing you may need to fully evaluate your health. The three major types of diagnostic testing you may review are (1) X-rays; (2) CT scans; and (3) MRIs. Each one will be looked at in turn.

X-rays are great to see if you have any broken bones (commonly done at the emergency room or urgent care) or to look at the alignment of your spine (something your chiropractic will be looking for). If your car accident was minor and you recover from your injuries within 3-4 months, an x-ray is all that you will undergo. However, if you are not recovering at a pace that your Las Vegas accident lawyer and doctors feel is not normal, you may need additional testing to determine what is wrong.

Computed tomography scanning (“CT scan”) also called computer axial tomography (CAT) is a more sophisticated type of x-ray. The CT scan can see things the normal x-ray cannot see. So, if you are still in unexplained pain and an x-ray did not show anything, you may need a CT scan. If the CT scan does not show anything, but you still have pain that will not go away with chiropractic care and physical therapy, your Las Vegas personal injury attorney and doctor may recommend that you receive an MRI to see what could be wrong with you. An MRI is short for Magnetic Resonance Imaging. An MRI can be done with or with a contrasting agent to help see inside your body. If the space between your spine’s discs have been damaged in any way as a result of your Las Vegas car accident, the MRI will show it.