Chain | Cohn | Clark’s ‘Legal Minute’ Videos Provide Latest Tips in Personal Injury, Workers’ Compensation Law
Chain | Cohn | Clark has developed a series of informational :60-second videos, featured during local TV news station KGET-17 (NBC). You can watch the video related to the following topics below:
- Car Insurance: How To Protect Your Family Before An Accident
- Work Injury: 5 Benefits For Injured Workers
- Elder Abuse in Nursing Homes: Identifying Signs
- Pedestrian Safety: How To Avoid Becoming A Victim in Kern County
- Motor Vehicle Accidents: Steps To Take After A Crash
- Accidents and Injuries: How Do I Know If I Have A Case?
- Out-of-Town Lawyers: 3 Reasons To Hire Local Attorneys
- Hiring a Lawyer: 4 Red Flags You Need To Know
- Worst Drivers: How to Keep Safe While In Bakersfield
Car Insurance: How To Protect Your Family Before An Accident
As a driver, you never know when an accident can happen, and it can be lifechanging. There are ways to make sure you and your family stay protected while on local roads. Here is one important way: Make sure you have uninsured motorist coverage.
This coverage protects you and your family in case you get into an accident with a driver who either doesn’t have insurance or doesn’t have enough insurance to cover your damages. Did you know California has one of the highest rates of uninsured drivers in the country? And Kern County’s rate is especially bad!
California’s minimum motorist coverage of $15,000 is barely enough to cover an ambulance ride. If you waive uninsured motorist coverage, or you have too little uninsured motorist insurance, you could be left with costly medical bills and other expenses.
Carry uninsured motorist coverage at limits of at least $100,000 per person to make certain that you and your family are protected.
Little known fact: This coverage also protects you or a family member if you are the victim of a hit-and-run crash or injured in a bike accident or pedestrian accident.
Work Injury: 5 Benefits For Injured Workers
California’s workers’ compensation laws help protect workers if they become ill or injured on the job. But many people don’t realize the different benefits available to them. Here are 5 basic benefits available to injured workers.
One: Temporary disability benefits are payments made to the injured worker if he or she is unable work during their recovery period.
Two: Medical treatment to cure or relieve the effects of the injury at no cost to the injured worker. This could potentially be a lifetime benefit.
Three: Disability payments may be paid on top of wages if the injury affects the worker permanently.
Four: Supplemental job displacement vouchers can be used to pay for educational retraining or skill enhancement at state-approved or accredited school if a person is unable to return to work.
Five: Death benefits are payments to a spouse and dependents if an employee dies from a work-related injury or illness. This includes burial expenses.
Elder Abuse in Nursing Homes: Identifying Signs
One in 10. That’s how many adults are likely to become a victim of elder abuse and neglect. That could be your parent, grandparent, aunt or uncle, neighbor or other loved one. In fact, in California there are more than 175,000 cases of reported elder abuse each year, according to Kern County Aging & Adult Services. And officials estimate that for every case known to reporting agencies, 24 cases go unreported. Here are two ways to identify elder abuse and neglect in a nursing home:
One: Look for physical signs. One of the most common signs of neglect are bedsores or pressure ulcers which can be deadly if they go unnoticed and untreated. Other physical signs of abuse and neglect include bruises, cuts, burns, rapid weight loss, or unexplained injuries.
Two: Watch for emotional or behavioral changes. These signs may be harder to detect, but the typical signs to look for are your loved ones becoming more withdrawn, depressed, or anxious. Behavioral changes such as sudden outbursts or unusual agitation can also be a sign of abuse.
To report cases of elder abuse, whether it is on your own behalf or that of someone you know, call California Department of Public Health, Community Care Licensing, Adult Protective Services, or the Long-Term Care Ombudsman.
Pedestrian Safety: How To Avoid Becoming A Victim in Kern County
The latest nationwide studies list Bakersfield as the No. 2 most dangerous metropolitan area in the United States to be a pedestrian and show a shocking increase in the pedestrian fatality rates over the years. Here are two ways you can avoid pedestrian accidents locally:
One: Avoid walking or running in the evening hours. The latest data shows that the most common time pedestrian accidents occur in Bakersfield any day of the week is between 6 to 9 pm.
Two: Be obvious and predictable, crossing at crosswalks or intersections only, walk facing traffic and as far from traffic as possible if there is no sidewalk. 57% of pedestrian accidents in Bakersfield happen because of a pedestrian violation, like crossing where there is not a crosswalk, according to state data.
Follow the above two steps especially if you’re in downtown Bakersfield and on Union Avenue, locations which rank at the top for pedestrian accident rates locally.
Motor Vehicle Accidents: Steps To Take After A Crash
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the odds of getting into a motor vehicle accident at any time in your life in the United States are about 1 in 100. Here are three steps you should take if you have been involved in an accident:
1) Obtain the name, address, insurance information, VIN and driver’s license numbers of all people involved, as well as the names, addresses, and phone numbers of witnesses.
2) Take photos if possible.
3) Make sure that a report is filed with the police, but do not talk to anyone else, especially insurance adjusters, about the accident or sign anything without first consulting an attorney.
3) Seek medical attention immediately and explain to your physician or surgeon all of the symptoms and complaints you have been feeling since the accident occurred.
Lastly, consult an attorney if there are significant injuries or legal complications to guide you through the legal process and help protect your rights.
Accidents and Injuries: How Do I Know If I Have A Case?
Here’s a scenario: You’re in an accident, and you think you need an attorney, but you’re not sure. Here are four ways to determine if you have a case:
1) Is someone else at fault? If it’s a car accident, was there another driver at fault? We call this liability.
2) Were you hurt? This is called damages and includes medical expenses you’ve incurred, and are likely to incur in the future, as well as loss of earnings. What about pain and suffering? These are called non-economic damages.
2) Third, we look for causation. Was the accident the cause of your injuries?
4) Lastly, is collectability. This typically comes from insurance or a corporate entity. There are times when people see us following very bad accidents with unfortunate injuries, but because the person who caused their injuries has little or no insurance, that person is what we call insolvent, and they can’t pay a claim.
If you have additional questions as to whether you have a case, consult with an attorney. By the way, this consultation should always be free.
Out-of-Town Lawyers: 3 Reasons To Hire Local Attorneys
You see them all over: cheesy ads, catchy phone numbers, virtual office addresses locally when no one actually works in them. They’re out-of-town law firms, typically from Los Angeles, and they claim they can help you. But don’t be fooled. They can actually make your case and your life much worse. Here are three reasons to steer clear:
1) To them you’re just a number. That is, they’re focused on what your case is going to settle for and how quickly this can happen. But remember, just because they’ll settle for anything, doesn’t mean you have to.
2) Want an update on your case? Good luck. They’re harder to get a hold of than Beyonce or Taylor Swift tickets.
3) You want to actually meet with an attorney face-to-face to have your questions answered. You’ll be lucky to even talk to one of theirs.
Accident and injury law is serious and complicated. If you’re local and you have been injured, hire a local injury law firm.
Hiring a Lawyer: 4 Red Flags You Need To Know
There are countless accident and injury law firms out there, but not all of them are reputable. Here are four red flags when choosing a lawyer to handle your case.
- You’re not meeting with a lawyer from the first meeting. If you’re not meeting with your attorney from day 1, the likelihood of you actually talking to your lawyer throughout your case is essentially zero.
- You only speak to the lawyer on the phone. Same as the first red flag: it’s not likely you’ll ever meet your lawyer in person, and it may be possible the attorney isn’t actually licensed.
- They’re an out-of-town law firm but advertise themselves to be local. Do you really want to start your relationship with your lawyer based on a misrepresentation or lie?
- They make you a promise that they cannot keep. No lawyer can guarantee the outcome of the case and if a lawyer guarantees you a certain amount of money, do not trust them.
Worst Drivers: How to Keep Safe While In Bakersfield
It’s a sad and scary statistic: Bakersfield is ranked the worst city to drive in based on the number of accidents, DUIs, and citations for things like speeding, running red lights, and distracted driving. In fact, Kern County has some of the nation’s highest rates of pedestrian, bicycle, and DUI crashes.
Here are simple steps to make sure you and everyone else makes it home safely:
1) Slow down: Speed limits are there for a reason.
2) Always drive sober. If plan to have drinks, consume drugs, or take prescription medications, get a ride from a friend or ride share service.
3) Focus: Keep your cell phone silent and put it in a place where you won’t be able to access it while driving. Keep your eyes on the road and scanning your surroundings.
4) Share the Road: Whether you’re driving a vehicle, on a bicycle, or walking – we all want to make it home safe. Be aware of your surroundings and what others around you are doing.
5) Don’t take risks: It’s better to stop at the yellow than run the red.
- Chain | Cohn | Clark launches 60-second series to help educate Kern County on its most common legal issues (KGET-17, NBC – March 24, 2023)
If you or someone you know is injured in an accident at the fault of someone else, or injured on the job no matter whose fault it is, contact the attorneys at Chain | Cohn | Clark by calling (661) 323-4000, or fill out a free consultation form, text, or chat with us at chainlaw.com.