Quadriplegic Love Stories: Inspiring Stories of Hope After Tragedy

October 16, 2017 Auto Accidents

Car accidents can cause debilitating injuries. If the spinal cord or column is damaged or severed, for example, it can

Car accidents can cause debilitating injuries. If the spinal cord or column is damaged or severed, for example, it can result in quadriplegia, or paralysis of all four limbs.

Yet quadriplegia is no barrier to love and long-term relationships.

Rekindling a Second Grade Crush

Valentines day. Red hearts on wooden backgroundTake the case of Ryan Atkins and Stephanie Perry. He was in college junior when he lost control of his SUV. The accident partly severed his spinal cord. Ryan spent four months in the hospital with a feeding tube and on a ventilator.

At first, Ryan was hopeful he would walk again. Gradually, he realized that was unlikely to happen soon. But he reconnected with faith and friends, sharing his story in a Facebook group.

Another member of the group? Stephanie, who’d gone to second grade with him. In fact, he’d had a crush on her in those long-ago days.

Stephanie was learning how to be a massage therapist. She got in touch with him through Facebook, asking if he’d like a massage. She thought it would be a one-time get-together.

But it wasn’t, and over time, a relationship grew.

They were married close to the seventh anniversary of his accident. Why? Because they were replacing memories of a sudden crash with long-term love and joy .

A 30-Year Celebration

If Ryan and Stephanie are young lovers, southern Californians Joni Eareckson and Ken Tada illustrate a more than 30-year marriage.

Joni received a spinal cord injury as a teenager more than 40 years ago, when a dive crushed her spinal cord. She learned to paint holding a brush in her teeth and moving her head. Her artistic ability led to television interviews and several books about her achievements.

But love was waiting closer to home. She met Ken through church. He was a local teacher. She had never been on a date.

He asked her out. They were married within the year. The two are partners in everything. She supports his dreams, he says, and he supports hers.

It just goes to show that love really does conquer all, and that people with accident-caused injuries can go on to love and achieve.

If You Need a Los Angeles-Area Lawyer

Injuries that cause quadriplegia are often a result of car accidents, although other accidents can cause spinal cord and other traumatic injuries as well.

If you or a loved one want legal advice about a car accident in southern California, call the Salamati Law Firm at 888-259-4060. We are experienced Los Angeles auto accident attorneys. Our investigators can get the real facts of the accident that caused harm to you or a loved one. We fight aggressively for justice, while means maximum compensation for a lifetime of medical bills, lost wages and the other financial and emotional costs of paraplegia and quadriplegia.

We will examine your case on a complimentary basis. An initial consultation is conducted at no cost to you.

Additional Resources:

  1. James, Susan Donaldson. “Deciding to Marry a Quadriplegic: Couple Tells Love Story.” ABC News. May 30, 2013. http://abcnews.go.com/Health/deciding-marry-quadriplegic-couple-tells-love-story/story?id=19282468.
  2. Sanahori, Sheeka. “Tragic Car Accident Leads to Love Story for Quadriplegic.” USA Today. March 29, 2016. https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/humankind/2016/03/29/tragic-car-accident-leads-love-story-quadriplegic/82380398/.
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How Do I Document My Slip and Fall Accident?

October 10, 2017 Premises Liability Lawsuits

Have you been injured after slipping or tripping and falling on someone else’s property? To improve the odds of walking

caution wet floor sign at a corridorHave you been injured after slipping or tripping and falling on someone else’s property? To improve the odds of walking away with a settlement or jury award, the premises liability attorneys at The Salamati Law Firm recommend that you document everything about your slip and fall accident.

Sometimes slipping and falling is not merely an accident. There are cases where a property owner’s negligence causes a safety issue or needless hazard that directly contributes to another person’s injuries. They may know that there is insufficient lighting, cracked sidewalks, uneven flooring, a spill, wet floors, debris in the walkway, broken railings, or overcrowded aisles – and fail to take action to remedy the situation.

Property owners are required by law to maintain safe premises and warn visitors of known dangers. A breach in this duty may entitle the injured party to compensation for medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and wrongful death benefits.

If you’re looking for the best slip and fall lawyer Los Angeles has to offer, look no further than the Salamati Firm, which has been winning multi-million dollar verdicts since 1995. We help clients build strong cases for their premises liability lawsuits with our extensive network of legal experts, medical doctors, and city inspectors. We work on a contingency basis, meaning that we will only agree to take on your case if we know we can win.

Meanwhile, here are some recommendations for how to document your slip and fall injury:

Take pictures of the accident scene.

If possible, take multiple pictures of the area where your Los Angeles slip and fall accident occurred. Friends or relatives can assist you with this task. It is especially important to capture this immediate documentation before anything gets moved or changed — for example, in the case of a liquid spill-related accident, a store employee may mop up the spill after you fall. Taking pictures of any visible injuries will also be helpful to your case.

Write down what happened.

The details of even the most traumatic incidents will fade from memory with time, so try to write down as much as you can remember about the accident right away:

  • What circumstances caused you to fall?
  • Was there a hazardous condition?
  • Were there visible defects at the time?
  • Were there any warning signs?

Report what happened to the responsible party.

Insurance companies question the validity of accidents that are not reported within 24 hours. If you’re on a commercial property, find the highest level person in the building and report what happened. Get a business card (or at least the person’s name and job title). If you are injured on public property, report the incident to the city or town municipality, keeping a copy of the letter for your records. Report injuries on private property to the owner, taking care to get their name and contact information. Get the contact information of any eye witnesses, if possible.

Seek immediate medical attention.

Medical records must match claims reported to the insurance company. Go to the Emergency Room by ambulance if your injuries are severe. Otherwise, schedule an appointment with your doctor right away to discuss what happened.

Be sure to keep record of all the costs associated with your treatment – ambulance rides, hospital stays, surgeries, prescription costs, physical therapies, insurance co-pays, the purchase of assistive devices, and home modifications to accommodate disability.

Discharge sheets and written instructions from doctors are good to include in your file, as well as medical bills.

Contact a slip and fall attorney in Los Angeles to explore your full set of legal options. There’s nothing to lose!

Additional “documenting a slip and fall accident” resources:

  1. Justia, California Civil Jury Instructions (CACI) (2017) Series 1000 – Premises Liability, https://www.justia.com/trials-litigation/docs/caci/1000/
  2. Insurance Information Institute, Controlling Liability Risks, https://www.iii.org/publications/insuring-your-business-small-business-owners-guide-to-insurance/risk-management/controlling-liability-risks
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Uber Accidents and Ride Sharing Liability in California

October 9, 2017 Auto Accidents

There is no doubt Uber has revolutionized transportation, but many drivers and riders are unaware of the liability issues ride-sharing

passenger waiting for Uber car

There is no doubt Uber has revolutionized transportation, but many drivers and riders are unaware of the liability issues ride-sharing accidents raise. Unfortunately, it is often not until someone experiences a ride-sharing accident that they realize what is and is not covered by insurance. If you drive for or ride with Uber, Lyft, or another ride-sharing company, it pays to find out before an accident occurs. If you have already been in a ride sharing accident, speak with a Los Angeles Uber accident attorney.

Ride sharing liability issues in California

Uber and Lyft, termed “Transportation Network Companies” in California, fall somewhere in between commercial taxi companies and personal vehicle use, leading to unique rules affecting liability.

  • Independent contractor v. employee: Since ride sharing relies on personal vehicles of non-commercial drivers, the drivers maintain their own vehicles, set their own schedules, and do not display signage of the company for which they drive. In the event of an accident, Uber consistently maintains that drivers are independent contractors, so the company is not responsible for their actions. In California, Uber drivers are viewed as independent contractors for employment issues, but there has been a push to view them as employees in the case of accidents. If drivers were considered employees, the company would be liable if the driver is negligent.
  • Insurance coverage: Many people falsely assume that the driver’s personal insurance policy will provide coverage in case of an accident, but personal auto policies typically exclude driving for hire. Uber and Lyft both provide insurance coverage but it is important to know what it covers and when it applies. Uber drivers may also wish to protect themselves by purchasing add-on ride-sharing coverage through an auto insurance company.

What does Uber insurance cover in California?

Uber provides some insurance coverage to its drivers, and in California the coverage is different than in most other states. The amount and terms of coverage depend on what is referred to as service periods:

Period 1 App is on; Driver is available and waiting for rider In California, $50,000 liability per person/$100,000 per accident; $30,000 property damage; $200,000 excess liability
Period 2 Driver en route to rider $1 million liability; $1 million uninsured/underinsured injury; Collision and Comprehensive if it is also offered on driver’s personal policy
Period 3 Rider on board; trip in progress

In plain English, Uber insurance often covers someone else’s loss if the driver is at fault. If you are the driver and are injured or experience property damage, you may need to sue the other driver because it is not covered unless you were en route or in process of a ride and you have comp and collision coverage on your own policy.

Consult a California car accident lawyer

Uber is a convenient service when needed, but it adds a layer of complexity when it comes to sorting out liability. If you have been injured in an Uber accident, speak with an Los Angeles car accident lawyer to find out whether the ride-sharing company may be liable; experienced attorneys at the Salamati Law Firm are ready to speak with you. The initial case review is free and we never charge a fee unless we win you money.

Additional “Uber Accident Liability” Resources:

  1. Uber, Insurance: How you’re covered, https://www.uber.com/drive/insurance
  2. Uber, Insurance Update for California Driver-Partners, https://www.uber.com/blog/california/insurance-update-for-california-driver-partners/
  3. Nerdwallet, Rideshare Insurance for Drivers: Where to Buy, What it Covers, https://www.nerdwallet.com/blog/insurance/best-ridesharing-insurance/
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Death Toll Rises in the Wake of Las Vegas Mass Shooting

October 2, 2017 News

Police reports say death toll in Sunday’s night’s outdoor concert massacre at the Mandalay Resort Hotel in Las Vegas has

Las Vegas Mandalay Bay Resort
Image by Alicia Yo [CC BY-SA 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/)], via Wikipedia
Police reports say death toll in Sunday’s night’s outdoor concert massacre at the Mandalay Resort Hotel in Las Vegas has risen to 58.  At least 515 people have been reported injured.  The alleged gunman, Stephen Paddock, was found dead in his hotel room after the shooting spree.  The suspect is believed to have checked into the hotel with more than 10 rifles although there have been no reports indicating what types of weapons were found.

At approximately 10 pm, police say that Mr. Paddock opened fire from his 32nd floor hotel room onto the crowd below, spraying a hail of bullets across the 22,000 concertgoers.  Audio recordings that were made at the scene indicate that the gunman had used at least one automatic weapon.   This mass shooting incident is now considered the deadliest in US history.

The Las Vegas Police department has notified the public that blood donations for the injured victims can be given at United Blood Services.  An additional blood drive will be held at the University Medical Center of Southern Nevada on Monday.  Citizens are also encouraged to contact their local American Red Cross offices.  For those who are not local to the area, financial donations can be made on the American Red Cross website.

Sean F. Salamati and the entire staff of The Salamati Law Firm are devastated by the tremendous loss of life and the harm inflicted on the families of all those who were killed or injured in this unprecedented event.

Though incidents on this scale shake the entire the world, people are victims of gun violence every day in this country. Whether inflicted intentionally or negligently, victims and the families of victims deserve the best and most experienced legal counsel to uncover what events led to the shooting and how it has since impacted their lives. The emotional impact of surviving gun violence adds another level of sensitivity that also deserves to be explored. It is possible to suffer serious injuries by merely witnessing such an event.

Sean F. Salamati has decades of experience to help families and victims who’ve been shot, uncover who is ultimately liable for the shooting and get compensation for those who deserve it.  For more information, please call us at 213-817-8888.

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What Are the Risk Factors for Financial Elder Abuse?

September 28, 2017 Elder Abuse

Financial elder abuse is a serious and growing problem in southern California. It is estimated that roughly 5% of Americans

senior woman in nursing home clasped handFinancial elder abuse is a serious and growing problem in southern California. It is estimated that roughly 5% of Americans over the age of 65 suffer financial abuse from family members and that approximately 7% are financially harmed by strangers.

What Is Financial Elder Abuse?

What does financial elder abuse mean? The term covers a wide spectrum of behaviors, ranging from outright theft of a senior citizen’s cash to withholding needed care from them in order to take the money that would need — often, money that comes from the senior citizen’s Medicare or Social Security benefits.

Financial elder abuse is financial harm. One type is done by either family members or trusted individuals such as friends, caretakers or healthcare providers.

People close to an older person may gain control of their ATM cards, bank statements, or income, and use it for their own gain. Often, the elder person is not aware of this until it is too late.

Financial advisors may inappropriately siphon off proceeds from an investment portfolio or use the funds outright. They may advise a reverse mortgage and gain title to the senior citizen’s house. They may gain control of real estate or other financial assets, sometimes by telling the senior that they will help with complicated decisions.

They may sell off possessions.

Another type of financial elder abuse is done by strangers.

These can be telemarketing scams asking for taxes to be paid immediately over the phone. (The Internal Revenue Service also communicates taxes owed by letter, not via telephone.) They may tout a stock that doesn’t exist or ask for donations to a worthy cause. In every case, the money goes to the scammers.

Fraudulent people may pose as utility or other repair people. They ring a doorbell and either ask the senior citizen to come outside and look at the problem or to pay for the repair. If the former, their valuables can be stolen. If the latter, no repair is every made.

Nationwide, elder financial abuse is estimated to cost senior citizens $2.9 billion every year.

What Are the Risk Factors?

Unfortunately, nearly every senior citizen may be at some risk. Many senior citizens have assets in their retirement accounts, monthly Social Security checks, and homes. Unscrupulous people know this.

It is possible to pinpoint special risk factor, however. Social isolation is one. If senior citizens have few family members or trusted friends around, they may be more vulnerable to abusers approaching them. They may have fewer people to bounce concerns or financial plans off of.

Unfamiliarity with their financial picture is another. People who are widowed and unaccustomed to reviewing financial accounts, for example, may be vulnerable to predatory handling and advice.

Cognitive impairment is another risk. If people cannot adequately handle their financial statements, it makes them more vulnerable.

Seniors who need help with the activities of daily life may also be at more risk. They need help, and many rely on relative strangers for assistance. This places them in a vulnerable position.

Look for the Signs of Financial Exploitation of the Elderly

It’s important to be aware of the signs of an elderly person being taking advantage of financially.

Senior citizens who have been victims of any abuse are often ashamed and frightened to tell anyone. Financial elder abuse victims are no exception. You may not hear it from them if you are a family member or friend.

Signs include health problems and mental health issues. Seniors may stop taking medication and neglect their health or fail to eat properly. They may become depressed and withdrawn, avoiding activities they formerly enjoyed.

A sudden drop in income or spending power could also be a sign. Seniors may suddenly realize they no longer have money to maintain their homes or drive a car if they have been victims of financial elder abuse.

When You Need an Elder Abuse Lawyer

Financial elder abuse is an unconscionable manipulation of vulnerable members of society. If you or a loved one have been a victim of financial elder abuse, don’t hesitate to call the Salamati Law Firm today. We are experienced Los Angeles elder abuse attorneys. We will fight to see that justice is done.

Your case will be reviewed by seasoned lawyers. An initial consultation is complimentary. We charge no fees unless we win your case.

Additional “financial elder abuse” resources:

  1. National Adult Protective Services Association. Get Involved. Elder Financial Exploitation. http://www.napsa-now.org/policy-advocacy/exploitation/
  2. Olson, Elizabeth. “Declaring War on Financial Abuse of Older People.” New York Times. April 14, 2017. https://www.nytimes.com/2017/04/14/business/retirement/retirement-preventing-elder-abuse.html?mcubz=0
  3. Wasik, John. “4 Risk Factors for Elder Financial Abuse.” Forbes. February 22, 2017. https://www.forbes.com/sites/johnwasik/2017/02/12/4-risk-factors-for-elder-financial-abuse/#34fd5b0c5f93
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How are Paralysis and Nerve Damage Evaluated in a Car Accident Case?

September 22, 2017 Auto Accidents

Paralysis from a traumatic event such as a car accident results in severe physical limitations that present serious health challenges

Standard manual wheelchair standing in empty hospital corridorParalysis from a traumatic event such as a car accident results in severe physical limitations that present serious health challenges while often preventing the victim from holding a job, enjoying prior hobbies and activities, and being able to take personal care of him- or herself. Other types of nerve damage may lead to fewer restrictions while still impairing daily life.

Though there is often no way to undo paralysis or nerve damage, when it was caused by someone else’s negligence a financial recovery can fill in some of the gaps. The Salamati Law Firm understands the hurdles that Los Angeles individuals and families face when it comes to establishing liability for such serious cases.

What damages can be recovered for a paralysis or nerve damage injury?

In California, personal injury victims can generally recover for both economic (or “special”) damages and non-economic (or “general”) damages. This means an injury victim is typically entitled to be compensated for:

  • Medical bills – both those already incurred and those reasonably anticipated in the future so long as they are related to the personal injury; this can also include related expenses such as rehabilitation services and in-home specialized nursing care
  • Lost wages – including those that have already been lost due to inability to work and those that will be lost in the future
  • Pain and suffering – includes both physical pain and mental suffering or anguish; California caps these non-economic damages at $250,00

A plaintiff’s recovery may be reduced if the plaintiff was also partially at fault. A jury is usually asked to make a determination of fault for each party and this is used to reduce the plaintiff’s recovery by his or her percentage of assigned fault. Insurance adjusters and defense lawyers may imply that you will not be allowed to recover compensation if you were partially at fault, but this is not true.

How to file a car accident lawsuit in California

California has a two-year statute of limitations for filing a personal injury lawsuit. If you were injured in an accident and believe someone else was at fault, it is important to not delay filing an action because the claim can be completely barred after the two-year period.

Personal injury claims are often paid by the at-fault driver’s insurance company but the insurance company is usually not a party to the case. Instead, the lawsuit is started by filing a complaint against the at-fault driver.

The causes and prognosis of complex injuries like nerve damage and paralysis are topics outside the knowledge of the average person. Therefore to prove the case, a plaintiff will need to work with expert witnesses like a doctor and possibly a bio-mechanical expert skilled in recreating and analyzing accidents. This may seem overwhelming, but a seasoned car accident lawyer will handle coordination with these expert witnesses.

How a car accident lawyer can help

After a serious accident, the last thing anyone looks forward to is an injury claim or lawsuit. At the Salamati Law Firm, we are prepared to take the lead; you can rest assured that your claim will be fought aggressively in the pursuit of full and fair compensation.

Contact us today, either by filling out an online contact form or by calling our office to schedule a case review with a Los Angeles car accident lawyer.

Additional “Paralysis and Nerve Damage from Car Accidents” Resources:

  1. WebMD, Nerve Pain and Nerve Damage, http://www.webmd.com/brain/nerve-pain-and-nerve-damage-symptoms-and-causes#1
  2. Mayo Clinic, Spinal Cord Injury Basics, http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/spinal-cord-injury/basics/definition/con-20023837
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Zero Tolerance: California Underage DUI Laws and Penalties

September 19, 2017 Auto Accidents

Every day, eight teenagers across the country die in crashes caused by driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol. Deaths

Alcoholism among young people - teenager drinking beerEvery day, eight teenagers across the country die in crashes caused by driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol. Deaths among teenagers make up 20% of all alcohol-related crashes.

Even though people between 12 and 20 years of age cannot legally drink alcohol, this age group is responsible for 11% of all alcohol consumption in the U.S. every year. Of that consumption, 90% comes from binge drinking.

As a result, people under the legal drinking age are high risk drivers. Many states, including California, have enacted a zero tolerance policy in an attempt to reduce underage drinking and driving. Zero tolerance means that drivers in this category can be charged for driving after having consumed a very small quantity of alcohol.

Zero Tolerance Laws and Penalties

In California, a DUI arrest depends on two things:

  1. The blood alcohol concentration (BAC) measured by the police in a breathalyzer, and
  2. Your age

If you are under 21 years of age, you can be arrested under the zero tolerance law if you have a minimum BAC of 0.1%. The penalties of the zero tolerance law are as much as $250 in fines, a minimum of one year license suspension, and a three-month mandatory alcohol education course that you pay for and attend.

In other words, if convicted under zero tolerance law, you will lose your license for one year, as well as having to pay fines and take a course.

A zero tolerance conviction does not go on your record as a criminal conviction. It also doesn’t add any points to your driver’s license.

Underage DUI Laws and Penalties

There is a related charge, however, that can apply to people under the age of 21 who have a BAC of 0.05% or higher. This is known as the “underage DUI.”

If you are convicted of an underage DUI, you can have your license suspended for one year and be fined a minimum of $100 and as much as $300. Mandatory alcohol education is also a part of this conviction.

Underage DUIs will be on your criminal record for at least 10 years if you are convicted. This is important because both college and job applications often ask if applicants have ever been convicted of a crime. You will have to answer yes, which can be grounds for denying the application.

Two points go on a driver’s license for an underage DUI conviction.

DUI Laws and Penalties for Adults of Legal Drinking Age

If an adult 21 or older is arrested with a BAC of 0.08% or above, penalties for a DUI conviction include fines, a jail sentence, and may include license suspension and a mandatory alcohol education that the defendant must pay for and attend.

It can also include points on a driver’s license, and is always part of the permanent criminal record.

All the Laws and Penalties Can Be Combined for Underage Drivers

It’s important to know that underage drivers can be charged with a combination of these laws.

In other words, a driver under 21 years old with a BAC of 0.08% can be charged with a violation of the zero tolerance law, the underage DUI law, and the standard DUI law that applies to those over 21. A combination of penalties, including fines, jail time, license suspension, and points on a driver’s license, may apply.

When You Need an L.A. Auto Accident Lawyer

The statistics on people under 21 combining drinking and driving are very sobering. The penalties if arrested and convicted can be very serious and have life-long consequences.

If you need an experienced Los Angeles auto accident lawyer because of a suspected DUI collision, contact us. The Salamati Law Firm has an excellent record of obtaining justice for clients in auto accidents caused by drunk drivers throughout Southern California.

Call us today! We will provide a consultation at no charge. Payment will come from any final jury award or settlement amount.

More info on underage drinking & driving laws in CA:

  1. Teen Driving Crash and Fatality Stats. Administrative Office of the Courts, State of California. http://www2.courtinfo.ca.gov/stopteendui/teens/facts/teen-driving-crash-and-fatality-stats.cfm
  2. S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Alcohol & Public Health. Fact Sheets. Underage Drinking. https://www.cdc.gov/alcohol/fact-sheets/underage-drinking.htm
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How to Appeal a Personal Injury Case

September 13, 2017 Personal Injury Lawsuits

Most people associate the appeals process with criminal law matters. In criminal trials, it is only the defendant who has

Judge gavel, scales of justice and law books in courtMost people associate the appeals process with criminal law matters. In criminal trials, it is only the defendant who has grounds to appeal a judgement, but in civil lawsuits, both parties have the right to appeal a personal injury verdict.

In California, as in all states, an appeal must be predicated upon a reversible error in law. It is not enough that the plaintiff disagrees with the jurors’ decision or believes they are entitled to a larger damage award. Instead, they must provide a specific infraction or misinterpretation of the law that prejudiced the appellant (the person filing the appeal) in some way. For instance, your attorney may file an appeal if jurors disregarded courtroom instructions, or an expert witness was unjustly barred from offering crucial testimony. In California, it is not uncommon for appellants to list multiple grounds for appealing a personal injury decision.

An appeal is a legal process in which a higher court examines perceived mistakes or misconduct during the trial proceedings. If the appellate court finds that the law was misapplied or evidence of procedural errors, it has the authority to overturn the verdict or mandate a new trial. 

How does the appeals process work?

In a personal injury trial, jurors are tasked with examining facts and evidence to determine which party is liable for damages. The appeals process does not involve a jury, but rather a panel of judges who review an appellate brief provided by your legal counsel.

It is up to your personal injury lawyer to submit a thorough, compelling appellate brief that details which laws were incorrectly interpreted or other errors committed. The defendant’s counsel will provide their own appellate brief that demonstrates the law was applied correctly and the lower court’s decision was indeed correct. After both sides present oral arguments to the judges, the court renders a decision. Usually, this process takes at least a couple of months but more complex cases may last upwards of a year.

It is left to the appellate judges to determine whether procedural steps were strictly followed and if the verdict will be upheld.

If the appeal is granted, there are several possible outcomes. The court may vacate the personal injury verdict entirely, remand the case back to lower court for a new trial, or the damage award may be revised.

Grounds for appealing a personal injury case

According to California’s Code of Civil Procedure, a new trial may be granted under a number of circumstances:

    • Error in law, occurring at the trial (§ 657(7)
    • Misconduct of the jury (§ 657(2)
    • Excessive or inadequate damages (§ 657(5)
    • Irregularity in the proceedings of the court, jury or adverse party, or any order of the court or abuse of — discretion by which either party was prevented from having a fair trial (§ 657(1))
  • Lack of evidence to justify the damage of the verdict and that such verdict is against the law (§ 657(6)

Personal injury lawyers in Los Angeles

Partnering with a talented personal injury attorney is imperative for pursuing justice to fullest extent of California law. Whether you are interested in filing a claim or believe that the verdict in your personal injury trial was unfounded, The Salamati Law Firm is poised to help.

Contact us online or call our office today to schedule a complimentary case review with a Los Angeles personal injury lawyer who is committed to client success.

Additional Resources on “Appealing a Personal Injury Case in California”:

    1. California Courts, Courts of Appeal, http://www.courts.ca.gov/courtsofappeal.htm
  1. American Bar Association, Steps in a Trial – Appeals, http://www.americanbar.org/groups/public_education/resources/law_related_education_network/how_courts_work/appeals.html
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September 8, 2017 Pedestrian Accident Injuries

Will self-driving vehicles help improve traffic and pedestrian safety? Many officials at the U.S. Department of Transportation believe this to

Senior citizen crossing street with fast car approachingWill self-driving vehicles help improve traffic and pedestrian safety? Many officials at the U.S. Department of Transportation believe this to be the case, which is why they created a regulatory framework for automated vehicles. A handful of states — including California — have now legalized their use.

However, self-driving cars still have their fair share of critics. A 2017 Deloitte study found that nearly 75 percent of Americans do not trust autonomous vehicles. With companies like Google, Tesla, Audi, Toyota and others rolling out a slew of vehicles equipped with onboard sensors and various types of AI, some project that autonomous capability could be standard in the U.S. as soon as 2030.

Will automated cars drive safer around pedestrians?

Unlike humans, automated cars – in theory – will behave more predictably on the roads. Distraction will be taken out of the equation completely, as there will be no temptation to answer a phone call, read a text message or attempt to steer while eating a burger. In addition, these self-driving cars will have automated systems installed to “sense” their surroundings and avoid hitting people.

One new start-up, Drive.ai, is taking a unique approach to automated vehicle technology, by focusing more on “teaching” cars about human behavior. The company is studying ways to incorporate the norms of human and driver behavior into on-board vehicle computers, allowing the cars to communicate with pedestrians. In addition to the technology for controlling the vehicle, these new models will be equipped with a roof-mounted system that may use a combination of light, sounds, text and motion to communicate with pedestrians and other motorists. The automated interface might tell a pedestrian or cyclist when they can safely cross the street, while inching forward could tell another motorist to yield.

The startup is planning on testing these self-driving vehicles in California this month.

As companies refine their automated vehicle technology with a view toward making roads safer with fewer accidents, only time and real-world experience will demonstrate if pedestrians and cyclists will benefit.

Automated cars in California raise legal questions

The advent of automated vehicles also raises numerous legal questions. How will self-driving cars be regulated for safety by the state and federal government? Will on-board pedestrian communication systems will be mandatory or optional on all vehicles? How will insurance claims be handled in the event of an accident or fatality? Who is held liable if a self-driving vehicle injures or kills a pedestrian or motorist?

Smart vehicle technology is an exciting field that promises a future with fewer accidents and deaths. However, self-driving vehicle accidents raise complex liability issues that are best explained by an experienced attorney. Explore your legal options today by calling L.A. pedestrian accident lawyer Sean Salamati for a free consultation.  Mr. Salamati is renowned for his tenacious representation and successful case results for car accident victims throughout southern California.

Protect your rights to just compensation. Call 1-888-259-4060 to arrange a no-obligation case review.

Additional Resources on Self-Driving Cars & Pedestrian Safety:

    1. StreetsBlogUSA, Self-Driving Cars Should Accommodate People, Not the Other Way Around http://usa.streetsblog.org/2017/07/25/self-driving-cars-should-accommodate-people-not-the-other-way-around/
    2. Technology Review, New Self-Driving Car Tells Pedestrians When It’s Safe to Cross the Street https://www.technologyreview.com/s/602267/new-self-driving-car-tells-pedestrians-when-its-safe-to-cross-the-street/
    3. WIRED, SELF-DRIVING CAR ‘GUARDIAN ANGELS’ PROTECT YOU FROM YOURSELF https://www.wired.com/story/self-driving-car-autonomous-guardian-angels/
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California Enacts Expanded Youth Sports Concussion Law

September 1, 2017 Personal Injury Lawsuits

Nationwide reports continue to demonstrate that many serious head injuries including concussions are a direct consequence of injured athletes returning

kids playing football; concussion risksNationwide reports continue to demonstrate that many serious head injuries including concussions are a direct consequence of injured athletes returning to play too soon. In an attempt to make sports safer and reduce the number of concussion injuries, California broadened its existing “return to play” legislation, effective January 1, 2017.

The amended law will apply to all athletes under the age of 18 who are participating in youth sports organizations that defined as clubs, competitions or camps. “This bill places California at the forefront of improving concussion management at the youth sports level” offered Mike Chisar of the CA Athletic Trainers’ Association. Chisar added that the youth concussion law, known as AB 2007, will help ensure that coaches, athletes and their families have proper education on the signs and early symptoms of concussion, helping minimize risk of injury.

Under AB 2007, all coaches, athletes and their families must be provided with comprehensive education materials regarding the potential consequences of head injuries, concussion symptoms and recommended practices for removing an athlete after head trauma, as well as measures for their return to sports following a suspected concussion.

Youth sports concussion law expanded in California

The revised youth concussion law entails a number of changes that will affect the operations of youth sports organizations.

  • Athletes who are suspected of suffering from a concussion or head injury must immediately be removed from play
  • Athletes may only return to play after they have received written clearance from a licensed medical provider trained in concussion management.
  • Athletes who have been diagnosed with a concussion must adhere to a gradual return-to-play protocol over a span of 7 days
  • Coaches and sports administrators must complete concussion training before supervising athletes in a sporting activity
  • After an athlete is suspected of suffering a head injury or concussion, their parent or guardian must be notified of the date of injury, symptoms and treatment provided

Amended law affects sports injury liability issues

Given the expanded provisions of AB 2007, youth sports organizations will be held to higher standards of care and duty owed to the safety of young athletes. Any California sports organization or club that fails to offer the required educational information to coaches, athletes and their parents prior to play may face liability in the event a participant is gravely injured or suffers a concussion. If graduated return-to-play protocols are not followed or coaches are not adequately trained to supervise participants, injured athletes could theoretically sue on the basis of negligence.

The Salamati Law Firm applauds any efforts aimed at concussion education and prevention. In recent years, more focus has been put on the severe, long-term health impacts of repeated sports-related concussions and head injuries, which can affect coordination, speech, memory, personality, and cognitive abilities.

Our California injury attorneys are experienced handling all types of claims involving traumatic brain injury and concussion stemming from recreational sports. To schedule a free case evaluation with a Los Angeles personal injury lawyer who is committed to protecting your rights, call the Salamati Law Firm today.

Resources on California’s Youth Sports Concussion Law: 

  1. American Youth Soccer Organization, Important: New California State Law on Concussions in Affect http://www.ayso.org/aboutayso/AYSO_News/Important__New_California_State_Law_on_Concussions_in_Affect_s2_p3660.htm#.WabPsciGNPZ
  2. California Interscholastic Federation, Concussions http://www.cifstate.org/sports-medicine/concussions/index
  3. Complete Sports Performance and Rehab, New California Concussion Laws for 2017 http://www.competesportsperformance.com/content/new-california-concussion-laws-2017
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