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Stockton, California, Personal Injury Blog

What to do when an injury impacts your finances

Work is your source of income, and if an injury compromises your ability to work, you might quickly find yourself in a dire situation. Not everybody is lucky enough to have emergency savings, and for people who already live paycheck to paycheck, finances can become even more stressful than the injury itself. There are several things every injured person should know in situations such as these.

While the party responsible for the incident should eventually be held accountable, you need immediate solutions that will help you survive and pay your current bills. These tips can help you get through your current struggles and deal with the injury you have suffered, too.

Side-impact crashes with large trucks do not have to be deadly

Tractor trailers must meet federal regulations set by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. Some safety features, such as rear underride guards, are mandatory.

Side underride guards are not yet a part of the required safety equipment on trucks. However, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, they should be.

How to get reimbursed for lost income after your accident

A key part of your insurance claim or personal injury settlement is the losses you have suffered because of your accident. If you are missing work due to your injury, you might be worried. Going without pay for weeks or months at a time can put you in a disastrous financial situation.

Fortunately, you can seek compensation for this lost income. Learn how to document your lost wages after your car accident so you can get back on track.

What is responsible for bad sidewalks in California?

Sidewalks exist for the main purpose of giving pedestrians a safe place to walk, hopefully keeping them out of the way of vehicular traffic in the streets while not forcing them to traverse uneven ground that may lay next to thoroughfares and rights-of-way. While they mostly do a good job at this, anyone who has walked any significant distance around an urban area in California knows that not all sidewalks are well maintained. So, what happens when it is the sidewalk itself that causes injury?

Poorly maintained sidewalks can create any number of hazards to those attempting to use them. Cracked concrete or asphalt can forge crevices that can catch a toe and send a pedestrian sprawling. Crumbling curbs can give way beneath a person's weight and cause a dangerous fall, perhaps even into oncoming traffic. When something like this happens, who will end up paying the resulting medical bills?

'Cause in fact' in California personal injury

Negligence is a term that can be thrown around a lot. In California and elsewhere, people often use the word to mean simple carelessness. While this definition is not wrong, and indeed, legal negligence does have a strong correlation to carelessness. In a courtroom setting there are several aspects of the theory that need to be shown in order to prevail in a lawsuit, whether based on an auto accident or other personal injury situation. We previously touched on the basics of a negligence case, and a few weeks ago we briefly discussed a couple of the elements that need to be shown, namely 'duty' and 'breach.'

Another major aspect to negligence cases, however, is that of causation. Just because an injury occurred, it does not necessarily follow that someone is to blame. Just as a plaintiff needs to show that someone did something wrong in the form of breaching a legal duty, he or she must also be able to prove that the breach also caused the injuries in question.

How car accidents can cause traumatic brain injury

A car crash can lead to a whole range of injuries, from the relatively minor to the fatal. Traumatic brain injury ranks among the more severe likely consequences of an accident.

Traumatic brain injury, or TBI, happens when the brain suffers a violent impact, such as one would experience during a crash. According to the CDC, car wrecks are the third leading cause of TBI.

What actions might indicate negligence in a California car crash?

Californians spend a lot of time on the road. Between commuting to work, shuttling kids back and forth to activities, and just driving to get out of town, residents probably spend a good part of their lives in motor vehicles. While the convenience and freedom afforded by such liberal use of cars and trucks is considerable, it brings with it the possibility of serious accidents that can cause severe, long-lasting injuries. When these types of crashes are avoidable, the injured party may be eligible for compensation.

To recover this compensation, car accident victims need to pursue a personal injury lawsuit, which uses another party's negligence as its basis. This space has previously discussed some of the basics of negligence, and it has taken a look at the aspects of duty and breach. But the fundamental concept in negligence is that someone was unreasonably careless. What might this mean in practice? What indications might there be that a person's injuries were caused by a negligent driver, and not a random accident?

'Duty' and 'breach' in California personal injury

Negligence is a word that gets thrown around quite a bit these days. While it may have a number of meanings among the general population, it is a very specific concept in legal circles. This blog previously outlined the very basic structure of a negligence claim by briefly summarizing the elements in such a claim. California readers may remember that the first two elements are 'duty' and 'breach.' Let's take a quick look at these foundational parts of a negligence case.

The first thing that must exist for a plaintiff to succeed on a negligence claim is that a duty was owed by the defendant to the victim. This is usually done in the form of a relationship that would legally require the defendant to act or not act in a certain way towards the plaintiff. For example, in a premises liability case, a landlord may have a duty to protect an invitee from a hazard on the property, but not owe that same duty to a trespasser. Or, in the case of an automobile accident, the defendant may owe a duty to other people on roadways to follow the rules of the road, and act reasonably in the face of changing weather conditions. Because whether a duty is owed is a legal question, it is usually resolved by a judge rather than a jury.

"California teen safe driving week" takes on distracted driving

Teenagers have traditionally been the earliest and most enthusiastic adopters of new technologies, especially those having to do with communication. Anyone who has spent any significant amount of time with a California adolescent likely has seen that person glued to a cell phone or other mobile communications device. The fact that this same age group is also involved in getting their first drivers' licenses and is relatively inexperienced on the roads can lead to them being more susceptible to distracted driving.

To help combat this tendency, the state highway patrol is sponsoring a program aimed at high-school age drivers to educate them about the dangers inherent in texting and driving and other distracted driving behaviors. As part of 'California teen safe driving week,' a high school in nearby San Jose invited a Stockton woman and others to speak to its students about the dangers of texting and driving.

Are some DUI arrests in Stockton motivated by exterior factors?

Stockton and the surrounding areas are home to some beautiful scenery, diverse populations and a number of colleges. You might not expect that the latter two of these could contribute to DUI arrests in the area.

According to an article from Recordnet, there are a disproportionate number of Latinos arrested for DUI. College students may be at an increased risk of DUI arrest, too. These are a few factors that may motivate arrests.

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