The Importance of Being Honest in NJ Workers’ Compensation Cases

Workers’ Compensation Attorneys Serving Clients in Princeton, Ewing, Hamilton, Pennington and across Mercer County, NJ

The Importance of Being Honest in NJ Workers' Compensation CasesThe concept of insurance fraud continues to find its way into the New Jersey Workers’ Compensation claims. Insurance carriers are now directing their lawyers to pursue fraud claims against injured employees as a means to terminate medical and monetary benefits. However, the nature of this fraud does not always lie in acts that could be recognized as “obvious.” An obvious example would be when an employee exaggerates the severity of their medical condition and is later found engaging in activities inconsistent with the nature of their complaints. Another obvious example is when an injured employee is found collecting money while engaged in a work-related activity which is more strenuous than the work they performed for their employer.

Legitimate Claims and Disabled Employees

Unfortunately, there are allegations of fraud being made against disabled employees with legitimate claims. These employees are complying with the instructions of their treating physicians and adhering to the directions of their insurance adjusters. Nonetheless, the insurance carriers are attempting to terminate their obligation to provide benefits by invoking N.J.S.A. 34:15-57.4. This is a New Jersey law holding that an employee is guilty of fraud if they file a workers’ compensation claim for medical or temporary disability benefits when they know that the claim contains false or misleading information. A violation of this statute under the New Jersey Criminal Code is a crime of the fourth degree, which could subject the person to a sentence of up to 18 months in county jail. The penalty in workers’ compensation court is the termination of all benefits and an order to repay back the benefits already received.

Insurances Carries and Fraudulent Actions performed by employees

Insurance carriers in New Jersey are bringing fraud actions when they believe they can prove that an employee knowingly failed to reveal prior injuries, accidents, or other claims. This is because the employee filing the claim has an obligation to notify either the treating physician, the evaluating physician, or the insurance carrier insuring their employer of these other factors.

The success or failure of the insurance carrier’s approach in these cases is almost completely in the hands of the workers’ compensation judge who is assigned to the case.

However, there is some guidance for judges when confronted with a fraud claim.

  • First, the alleged infraction must be more than an inaccurate or inconsistent statement made during the course of treatment. Many people cannot recall the names or dates of physicians who treated them for injuries in the past – especially those individuals with a lengthy personal injury history.
  • Second, the alleged infraction must be more than an omission of prior diagnoses to their treating physician. Many people cannot recall all of the tests performed or their test results. It is enough that the injured employee informs his treating doctor that they had a prior injury to the area of the body which they are alleging arose out of the work-related accident.

Keep in mind that major treatment, such as surgery or the recommendation for surgery, is also information that should be shared with your physician. This is common sense, as you want your doctor to know your complete history so that you can receive the very best treatment available to you.

As a general rule, if you are injured at work, you need to be honest with your doctors. Follow their directions and restrictions at all times.

Contact our Trenton Personal Injury Staff of Attorneys

If you have any questions about your obligations when injured, please contract Kamensky, Cohen & Riechelson we have experienced attorneys in Princeton, Ewing, Hamilton, Pennington and across Mercer County, New Jersey.

Don´t hesitate to schedule an initial consultation by calling (609) 528-2596 or visiting our website and fill out an online form.

New Jersey Laws Protect Pedestrians, Joggers, & Cyclists

Pedestrian accident victims represented by dedicated personal injury lawyers in Trenton, Lawrence, Hamilton, Princeton, East Brunswick and across Mercer and Middlesex Counties

What are my options if injured in a pedestrian accident in NJ?New Jersey ranks 13th in the nation in pedestrian fatalities per 100,000 people, based on the 2017 National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) data, and these numbers continue to rise. On average, one pedestrian is killed every two days in New Jersey and 12 are injured daily. Since May of 2019, more than 54 pedestrians have been killed in accidents with motor vehicles. According to recent NHTSA data, New Jersey pedestrians made up 29% of the state’s 624 fatalities in 2017, almost twice the national average of 16%.

A personal injury can dramatically change your livelihood and well-being, leaving you saddled with numerous medical bills, lost wages, rehabilitative therapy costs, and significant pain and suffering. If your pedestrian or bicycle accident was caused by reckless driving, distracted driving or the careless actions of another, you have the right to seek compensation for your losses.

Is a Lawyer Necessary after a Pedestrian Accident?

Yes. Our car accident attorneys consult with accident reconstructionists and other experts to investigate the crash. We use evidence such as police and medical reports, witness statements, expert testimony, photos, video footage, and other documents.

In some cases, there may be multiple causes and parties at fault. For example, a defective roadway or vehicle malfunction may have made the driver lose control of his or her vehicle. If that was the case, the government agency in charge of maintaining the road, or the vehicle parts manufacturer, might also be partially responsible.

New Jersey Laws Protect Pedestrians, Joggers, & Cyclists

New Jersey Laws Protect Pedestrians, Joggers, & CyclistsUnder NJ Rev Statute 39:4-36 and Title 75, Chapter 35 of the Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes, pedestrians have the right of way in a crosswalk. However, pedestrians and joggers are prohibited from suddenly darting from the curb to the street or running in the path of a vehicle that is so close that the driver is unable to stop or yield. Pedestrians and joggers must yield to drivers if they are crossing the road outside a crosswalk and obey all pedestrian-related traffic signals.

Motorists are required to exercise due caution when driving near people on foot or on a bike, but all too often, negligence on the part of car and truck drivers leads to serious pedestrian or bicycle accidents. If a driver strikes you at a crosswalk, they are more likely to be found at fault for the accident.

However, those on foot who maybe have been jaywalking at the moment an accident occurred, may find it more difficult to prove their accident injury case.

Steps to Take if Involved in a Pedestrian Accident

Even at a low speed, an automobile accident can cause disabling injuries, including spine and traumatic brain injuries to a pedestrian, jogger or cyclist.

When a cyclist or pedestrian is injured by a motor vehicle, police and emergency medical personnel should be alerted immediately. Quite often a pedestrian may be confused or in shock and unaware of their injuries or their severity.

Each party should avoid engaging in discussions regarding fault or wrongdoing, as any admission of guilt can later be used against them.

If you are the driver of the motor vehicle:

  • check to see if either you or any of your passengers have sustained an injury
  • check to see if the pedestrian, jogger or cyclist has sustained injuries
  • remain at the scene of the crash or collision
  • call 9-1-1 for help

If possible, both parties should:

  • photograph any visible injuries and the scene, & make video and/or audio recordings
  • exchange names, phone numbers, and insurance information

File a police report to document the accident.

Both parties should also seek medical attention:

  • immediately if they are in a lot of pain
  • right away even if the pain is mild, to document injuries and any non-visible trauma (i.e., spinal and traumatic brain injury)

Not only will you be able to receive the medical attention you need for potentially traumatic injuries, but you will also get a diagnosis of any medical conditions brought about by your accident. This is vital to your personal injury claim, as it creates a direct link between your accident and injuries. The longer you wait to see a doctor, the weaker that connection becomes.

Do not sign any paperwork without speaking to your lawyer. This mostly refers to offers from insurance companies, who will often attempt to get claimants to sign paperwork accepting less than they are owed. In some situations, signing paperwork may even strip your rights for further legal action.

Contact personal injury lawyers who have handled numerous pedestrian and hit-and-run auto accident cases over the years with outstanding results. When you are ready to begin the personal injury claim process, having a seasoned legal team in your corner is essential.

If a Loved One Was Killed in a Pedestrian Accident

According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), pedestrians most at risk are adults over 65, children under 15, and both drivers and pedestrians who are alcohol-impaired. If your loved one was hit and killed by a vehicle, you may have a pedestrian wrongful death claim against that vehicle’s driver. We know how difficult these cases are, and we do our best to provide compassionate and thorough legal representation for the family of the victim. When someone is killed, he or she leaves behind a huge emotional and financial gap, and our job is to get fair compensation from the responsible parties to allow the family to heal and to provide for their future.

Consult our Injury Lawyers in our Trenton or East Brunswick offices for answers today

At Kamensky Cohen & Riechelson, our dependable and compassionate lawyers have more than 40 years of experience handling traffic cases, auto accidents and handling personal injury claims for clients across New Jersey and Pennsylvania. We understand the nuances of each state’s traffic laws and are well-informed about changes in the laws.

Our resourceful attorneys will personally guide you through the legal process, keeping you informed every step of the way so that you know exactly what is happening with your case. Our goal is to help you obtain maximum compensation for your losses. However, it’s important for you to know that there is a statute of limitations on your right to sue after suffering a personal injury. You must file your claim within two years of the date your injury occurred or you will lose the right to sue.

Contact us online or by telephone at (609) 528-2596 from New Jersey or (215) 337-4915 to arrange a consultation with an experienced Pennsylvania and New Jersey personal injury lawyer. As always, we take the majority of cases on contingency. This means, if we don’t win, you don’t pay.

Slip and Fall Claims Attorneys Helping Clients In Mercer and Middlesex County

Advising clients facing slip and fall-related injuries across New Jersey in Hamilton Township, Trenton, Ewing and across Mercer and Middlesex County

Slip and Fall Claims Attorneys Helping Clients in Mercer Middlesex CountyNew Jersey winters are a cold, wet, wild ride. During winter, you must be especially careful when walking so as not to slip and injure yourself, but such falls can happen at any time and in any place. Dangerous conditions are not limited to the icy outdoor conditions New Jersey is subject to during winter, such as on sidewalks and in car parks; in fact, snow, ice, and rain can make their way indoors and turn any surface into a danger zone. Downpours at all times of the year seep underneath the doors of many businesses, turning their front lobbies into a puddle spelling disaster.

Falls are responsible for more than eight million hospital visits to the emergency room, which accounts for more than one of every five visits, according to the National Floor Safety Institute.

New Jersey law holds that business owners are responsible for maintaining the grounds of their property, internally and externally. This includes ensuring that slippery conditions do not exist, no matter the weather outside. If someone slips and falls on a business’s property, it is likely that the victim may have rights to personal injury compensation or other damages. This type of ‘slip and fall claim’ requires the expertise of a personal injury lawyer. Representation by a personal injury law firm ensures that the victim will receive the full and rightful compensation for injuries sustained as a result of the negligence or dangerous conditions of the business’s grounds, and of its management.

What is a slip and fall claim?

A slip and fall claim is filed to seek recovery for injury or damages occurring due to unsafe conditions on a business’s property. Many slips, trips, and falls that happen on business property are due to fraying carpet and slippery linoleum flooring. Injuries occurring as a result of a slip and fall can be serious, including injury to the head, neck, back, spinal cord, and hips, and traumas or fractures of many kinds. Such a fall could even cause trauma to the brain. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that in New Jersey in 2016, falls, slips or trips resulted in the deaths of 26 people.

Most Common Injuries Associated With Slip and Falls

Of slips and falls, the National Floor Safety Institute reports that fractures are the most prevalent serious result of slips and falls that occur in one’s workplace, injuring 5 percent of those injured in a fall. And among people over the age of 65, 87 percent of all fractures happen as a result of falls, which are also the second leading cause of spinal cord and brain injuries among the elderly.

Delayed Symptoms and the Importance to File a Claim After a Trip and Fall Accident

Even if at first appearing mild, these types of injuries can keep someone from being able to work for extended periods of time as symptoms begin to show themselves after the initial stress functioning has subsided. As such, it is important to file a slip and fall personal injury claim if you feel you may have been injured due to slippery conditions. A victim is responsible for filing a claim within two years of the accident to be able to seek damages. In the meantime, it is important to keep documented reports and receipts of medical expenses incurred as a result of the injury, as well as a detailed case file.

When will a property owner be held legally responsible for the accident?

A property owner will be held legally responsible if any of the following conditions are present when an accident occurs:

  • it can be proven that the property owner knew about the dangerous condition and did not remedy the situation;
  • the property owner or an employee personally caused the danger; or
  • the property owner and employees did not notice the dangerous condition, though it was an obvious and apparent danger.

If the property owner is found to meet any of the above conditions, they will be legally responsible for covering all injuries and damages claimed as a result of an accident on their property.

Contact Our Mercer County Slip and Fall Lawyers Today

At The Law Office of Kamensky, Cohen & Riechelson, our experienced attorneys are well poised to help victims of slips and falls across Hamilton Township, Trenton, Ewing and across Mercer County, and ensure that you recover your fair share of damages for any injuries sustained in the accident.

We pride ourselves on our integrated approach to protecting the legal rights of victims no matter the extent of their injury. To contact a member of our highly skilled personal injury law team and schedule a personal consultation, please call (609) 528-2596 or fill out our online contact form.

Mercer County Attorneys Discuss Child Playground Injuries

Personal Injury Attorneys serving Children and Their Families if Injured on Playgrounds with offices in Trenton and Bensalem

Do You Have an Amazing Backyard Jungle Gym? Is it Safe?

For many of us, childhood memories of backyard games and activities with our friends and family put a smile on our faces. Having fun was the most important aspect of these backyard play sessions with safety coming in a distant second or third. However, times have changed. When it comes to choosing backyard play equipment, the fun factor is still important, but safety must be paramount. According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, more than 200,000 American children end up in emergency rooms due to playground injuries every year.

Is perfectly understandable that playground accidents may occur despite safety conditions. Growing hurts, as we have all heard before, and is part of our learning process. However, if those injuries are due to inadequate conditions, equipment malfunctioning or any other type of negligent behavior, it´s recommendable to take actions against the ones responsible, not only thinking of your own child but the people´s around you as well. At Kamensky, Cohen, and Riechelson we´ll fight for your rights. Contact us via our online intake form or give us a call today (609) 528-2596 to learn more about your rights and legal options.

Safety Steps You Should not Ignore

Follow These Simple Tips To Keep Your Backyard as Safe Space for Your Children and their Friends:

  • Installing a shock-absorbing surface will help minimize injury when kids trip or fall. It is recommended that for play structures up to seven feet high, to use at least nine inches of wood chips, mulch or shredded rubber. For play structures up to five feet high, the use of sand or pea gravel at least nine inches deep is advised.

It is important to remember that the shock-absorbing surface should extend at least six feet out from the play equipment in all directions and even further for swings.

  • Checking the equipment for protruding hardware, such open “Shooks” or the ends of bolts, and looking for sharp points or edges on the equipment can help prevent lacerations from such protrusions, as well as prevent clothing from getting caught and resulting in other injuries.
  • Making sure platforms and ramps have guardrails can prevent falls. Furthermore, it is critical to be sure that the rails are not too slippery for a child to hold onto.
  • Eliminating spaces where small children could get caught or trapped is also very important. Be sure that the openings between guardrails and platforms as well as ladder rungs measure less than four inches or more than nine inches.
  • Finally, be sure that the play structure is securely bolted and anchored in the ground. In addition, removing any protruding concrete footings will reduce the hazard of tripping as well as sharp edges that can cause damage if fallen on. Furthermore, it is prudent to remove any tree stumps or large rocks within the play area.

Common Locations of Playground Injuries in NJ and PA

Playground injuries often occur at public schools, private schools, daycares, city parks, as well as private homes. Honestly, most of these injuries are often caused by unsafe behavior by children. However, if the injury was caused by unsafe equipment or negligent supervision you may be entitled to financial compensation that can help with medical bills and your child’s recovery.

Premises Liability and Playground Injuries

Under New Jersey law, schools and other operators of playgrounds have a responsibility to protect children from foreseeable dangers on the premises. If your child was injured due to the negligence of the operator of a playground you may be able to recover damages based on a premises liability. However, you will need to show that:

  • The defendant was in fact in charge of the property
  • The child had a right to be on the property
  • The proper amount of care was not exercised by the defendant
  • The child’s injury occurred in a foreseeable way
  • Carelessness on the part of the defendant was a major cause of the child’s injury

With these facts proven, the elements of a premises liability case would be met, and the school or owner/operator of the playground could be deemed negligent. A financial recovery could go a long way toward paying medical bills that may mount after your child is injured.

Contact Our Trenton and Bensalem Playground Accidents Lawyers Today

If your child or a child you know has been injured on the playground due to bad maintenance or negligence you should contact an experienced personal injury lawyer today. We can help you hold individuals, cities, or governmental agencies responsible for the caused injuries. Not only can a liability case result in the compensation you and your family deserve, but it may also force external factors to change to avoid other kids suffer from the same type of injuries.

Just contact us via our online form or call us today (609) 528-2596 to explore your rights and legal options. We will focus on your case and trust we´ll do our best for you. It is important to know you do not need to fight this alone.

Do I File a Workers’ Comp or a Personal Injury Claim in NJ and PA?

Workers Compensation vs Personal Injury Claims in Mercer County NJ and Bucks County PA

Workers´Compensation Attorneys Serving Clients in Hamilton, Lawrence, and East Windsor, across Mercer County and Central New Jersey

If you are not sure if you should file a personal injury or workers’ compensation claim, the first thing you should do is find qualified counsel to help guide you through the steps of either legal process. It is ideal to find a firm with legal professionals dedicated to both types of cases so that your rights are protected no matter the outcome.

At the time of the initial intake of each and every workers´ compensation case, we determine whether or not there is a viable third party claim. If we believe that there is a viable third party claim the matter is then reviewed by another attorney in our firm, in our personal injury department, to see whether or not that is a claim which can proceed in the civil venue. If there is a third party case that is pursued and successful, there would be a lean in the worker´s compensation case which would be repaid at the time the case is resolved, if it´s determined that there is a viable third party claim.

I, attorney Curt Cox, work very closely with the members of the personal injury department, lead by Phil Cohen and Kevin Riechelson, to make sure we maximize any or all recovery possible.

Workers Comp and Personal Injury Law Firm That Works Together for Their Clients

Experienced workers’ compensation and personal injury attorneys at Kamensky Cohen & Riechelson have the training, education, and legal experience required to properly file your claim, no matter what court or venue. With more than 40 years of experience representing injured workers in NJ and PA, our trained legal professionals will zealously represent you to be sure that you obtain all of the benefits to which you are entitled.

Call today at 609.528.2596 or contact us via our online form, and schedule a time to come into one of our offices conveniently located in Trenton, NJ, Bensalem, or Philadelphia, PA.