Alameda Personal Injury Law Blog

Police department settles wrongful death suit for $1.9 million

The loss of a loved one due to another person's misconduct is a tragedy that no compensation can truly equate. While no amount of money can bring back a loved one, file a civil action has its benefits. A tragic death from back in 2015 in southern California, however, illustrates the important role that a wrongful death lawsuit can play in providing some measure of accountability and closure.

The incident began when police received reports that one homeless man was threatening another in an area of the city where homeless people commonly sought shelter. There were disputed allegations that the man attempted to seize a gun from one of the responding officers; at some point, the man was shot and killed by police. A witness uploaded a smartphone video of the episode to social media, which then went viral, leading to public outcry.

Types of brain injury: what Alameda residents need to know

Last week, we discussed the case of a serious injury that occurred at a party when a flying object hit a victim on the head. While a brain injury can occur in a diverse set of circumstances, not every brain injury is the same. Let's take a look at a few important differences in brain injuries, with the understanding that the information is not intended as specific legal advice, but as a general background on brain injuries only.

Bruising of the brain is one common type of brain injury. Usually appearing in slip-and-fall accidents and car accidents, the brain becomes bruised when a sudden force causes the brain to move abruptly inside the skull. A traumatic injury can also cause tearing, which is like a web of small cracks that emerge in the brain. Tearing can cause victims to experience severe restrictions in the use of their bodies, depending on which areas of the brain are affected.

Compensation for victim who suffered head injury from drone

Once a tool limited to high-tech military operations, drones are now available in stores everywhere and are marketed to practically all age groups. Alameda residents use them for hobbies ranging from racing to photography, and even event-planning companies use them for crowd photography. However, one such company recently settled a lawsuit that highlights the danger of brain injury that drones can pose.

The company was putting on an outdoor party at a California fraternity house. They had contracted with a drone operator to take aerial pictures of the crowd. One guest had been at the party for around 20 minutes when a drone crashed into her head, knocking her into a friend who happened to catch her. She was bleeding profusely from the head and an ambulance had to take her to the hospital.

Legal protections following a traumatic brain injury

Traumatic brain injuries can occur in a variety of settings and different types of accidents including car accidents, truck accidents or in a serious slip and fall accident. In each instance, it is important that victims of a traumatic brain injury (TBI) are familiar with the legal resources that may be able to help them with the damages they are likely to suffer as a result.

Traumatic brain injury refers specifically to trauma to the brain and TBIs can have a profound impact on the lives of victims. There are generally two types of brain injury including open, or penetrating, brain injuries and closed brain injuries. In some circumstances, the impact of especially a closed head injury may not be obvious or immediately noticeable so it is important to understand the symptoms of a brain injury and to be able to watch for the signs down the road.

3 misconceptions about truck accident safety

If you imagine the sheer size and weight of a big rig, you can understand why these vehicles are so dangerous while they're on the road. A non-commercial vehicle doesn't stand a chance when struck by a big rig. It will be crushed in a heartbeat and the victims inside the car will likely suffer catastrophic or fatal injuries.

Technological advances have come a long way to make semitrucks safer, but they haven't come that far. At the end of the day, there is the size and weight disparity of these massive vehicles to passenger cars and light trucks with which they share the road.

What should I do if I am involved in a car accident?

Being involved in an unexpected car accident can be upsetting, especially if you are not at fault or to blame for the accident. Car accident victims may wonder what to do following a car accident. It is important to take actions to preserve a personal injury claim for damages, if that is what the victim later decides to do. Initially, it is always important for parties involved in a car accident to remain at the scene.

To begin with, a car accident victim should always seek any medical care that is needed immediately following the car accident. Because some types of injuries suffered in a car accident can worsen following the car accident, and the extent of the injury may not be immediately obvious following the car accident, it is also important for victims to know what to watch for. In addition, it is valuable to keep organized and detailed medical records for use later in a personal injury claim for damages.

Month-long media campaign targets distracted drivers

April is National Distracted Driving Awareness Month. Alameda residents may already have seen some ads from the multi-million-dollar media campaign launched by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration aimed at getting drivers to put down their cellphones while behind the wheel.

The campaign focuses mainly on drivers between the ages of 18 and 34, statistically the age group at the highest risk of death in distracted driving accidents. The NHTSA has recently reported that nearly 3,500 people lost their lives in distracted driving accidents in 2016. That includes more than 560 pedestrians, bikers and other victims who were not in a vehicle at the time.

Slipped and fell? Don't take a settlement on the scene

You were walking on a pathway through an outdoor patio when you suddenly found yourself falling to the ground. The ground was slick, and you couldn't catch yourself.

Being outside, you attempted to grab onto a table or chair before you hit the ground, but there was nothing there. You landed on an uneven rock, managing to badly bruise your elbow, crack a rib and hit your head.

Premises liability and injuries in public spaces

Dangerous property conditions are commonly associated with buildings, either inside or perhaps in a parking lot or ramp, or on an adjacent sidewalk. An unfortunate accident at a local Alameda park, however, demonstrates that hazardous conditions can lead to injury even in the wide-open outdoors.

The incident took place during an evening softball game when a large tree suddenly toppled. It had been growing on a slope, and the soil in which it had been growing was wet from rains. When the tree fell, it landed on a father who was watching his daughter play in the varsity game. Although he is described as being in stable condition, his injuries were serious and will likely require long-term recovery.

What does 'loss of consortium' mean in a wrongful death claim?

Accidents take place in Alameda every day, and they can be life-changing events for families who lose a loved one. When we talk about wrongful death claims, we often emphasize the importance of a settlement or jury award in helping to keep a grieving family on solid financial footing. This is particularly true when the deceased provided financial support, as in the case of someone who earned a salary.

However, we also want Alameda readers to understand that compensation may be available for what is known in the legal system as "loss of consortium." What is loss of consortium? Consortium refers to the companionship, the love and affection that a family member contributed. If the deceased had children, it can also include the care and parenting that the deceased provided to the children.

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