Common Personal Injury Mistakes Mercer County, NJ

Mercer County NJ Personal Injury AttorneysDespite what insurance companies might have you believe, personal injury cases can be legally complex and serious legal matters. When individuals seek to recover financial compensation without the assistance of a qualified personal injury attorney, they are putting themselves and their families at risk. Individuals who have been injured in car accidents, motorcycle accidents, slip and fall accidents, or any other kind of accident must be careful to avoid common mistakes throughout the personal injury process. Personal injury recovery starts the moment after an accident, even before the formal legal process begins.

Our personal injury lawyers will be reviewing common mistakes to avoid when dealing with insurance providers, seeking medical attention, and working with local Mercer County attorneys.

Dealing with Insurance Companies Within Mercer County, NJ Personal Injury Claims

The majority of personal injury claims in New Jersey are brought against insurance providers for the at fault party. This means that the bulk of the interactions your Mercer County personal injury attorneys will be having will be with an insurance company rather than the at fault entity. Here are some common errors made by individuals who deal with insurance companies on their own:

  • Speaking to insurance companies without an attorney – before even beginning your interaction with an insurance provider, it is recommended to at least have a consultation with a qualified Mercer County PI lawyer
  • Making on the record statements without an attorney – just like you should never answer questions in a criminal defense situation without a lawyer, you should avoid making unnecessary statements
  • Filing a personal injury claim without an attorney – when victims try to recover damages through a personal injury claim on their own, they are going against a company with decades of legal experience and well funded resources. This often ends poorly
  • Accepting a low-ball, lump sum settlement – along those lines, we see many families accepting much less than they should due to a lack of understanding of the value of their claim

Princeton Personal Injury Lawyers Discuss Importance of Doctor’s

Another key aspect of personal injury claims is proving the nature and extent of your injuries. Our Princeton personal injury lawyers have seen clients attempt to prove their injuries with pictures and verbal testimony. However, there is no substitute for getting a formal diagnosis from a qualified medical professional. When you have been injured in an accident, be sure to avoid these mistakes:

  • Failing to see a doctor in a timely manner – the sooner you get to a doctor, the stronger the connection between your accident and your injury. Insurance companies will claim that the injury may have been pre-existing or unrelated when victims wait too long
  • Failing to adhere to doctor’s orders – similarly, victims are responsible for attempting to improve their medical situation by following doctor’s orders. If you are not improving medically, it could be argued that it is your own fault if you are not following the recommended treatment plan
  • Not filing for personal injury claims in time – as a final note, personal injury claims must be filed within state mandated time frames known as statutes of limitations. Most PI claims must be filed within two (2) years of the injurious accident

Injured in an Accident? Contact our Trenton Personal Injury Attorneys Today for a Free Consultation

At Kamensky, Cohen & Riechelson, our team of qualified and experienced personal injury attorneys are proud to serve Mercer County communities such as Princeton, Trenton, Lawrence, New Brunswick, Hamilton, and all of Central New Jersey. Our firm has earned a reputation as offering high quality, ethical, and dynamic legal solutions to victims of injurious accidents. Rather than taking our word for it, feel free to review our many client testimonials from satisfied clients over the years. We are more than equipped to recover financial compensation through successful personal injury verdicts or settlements for even the most complex cases.

If you or a loved one has been injured an accident, please contact us online or through our Trenton, NJ offices by calling (609) 528-2596 today for a free and confidential consultation.

What is Comparative Negligence within Personal Injury Claims?

The crux of most personal injury claims is finding the responsible party and holding them liable. However, not all accidents are cut and dry with only a single at fault party. Many cases involving car accidentsmotorcycle accidentstruck accidentsdog bites, or any other type of accident, involve multiple liable parties. In these situations, is it still possible for injury victims to recover damages? Through New Jersey comparative negligence laws, it is possible for victims to recover compensation through personal injury claims even if they are partially at fault.

Today, our personal injury attorneys will define comparative negligence, identify what parties may be impacted, and discuss how these statutes may impact personal injury claims.

N.J.S.A. 2A: 15-5.1 Comparative Negligence: Princeton, NJ Personal Injury Lawyers

As per New Jersey Revised Statutes Section 2A:15-5.1 – contributory negligence; elimination as bar to recovery; comparative negligence to determine damages, it is possible for a partially at fault party too seek damages so long as they are not more at fault than the other party. To illustrate this point, our Princeton personal injury lawyers will examine a hypothetical example:

Susan is driving along I-95 near New Brunswick in her family sedan. Matthew is driving behind her in a pickup truck. Susan receives a text message, picks up her phone, and begins to text back. Matthew attempts to change lanes to pass Susan while speeding and driving recklessly. The two vehicles collide resulting in property damage and physical injury to both parties.

Whether Susan, Matthew, or both will be eligible to financial compensation through a personal injury claim will be dependent on the degree to which each party is liable for the injurious accident. Within personal injury cases, fault is assigned using percentages. If Matthew is found to be 70 percent liable (due to reckless driving) and Susan is found 30 percent liable (due to distracted driving), Susan may sue Matthew but Matthew will not be able to recover damages through a personal injury claim.

How Does Partial Fault Impact Personal Injury Compensation in Mercer County?

Let’s examine this situation further. We have established that comparative negligence laws allow partially at fault parties to successfully recover compensation if they are less liable than the other party. However, partial fault does have an impact on the financial compensation to which partially liable parties are entitled. Our Mercer County comparative negligence attorneys understand that the percentage of fault is still a major factor.

Suppose Susan successfully filed for personal injury damages with Matthew’s auto insurance provider and was awarded $100,000 to cover her injuries and property damage. In a typical case, that money would go straight to Susan. However, when the plaintiff is partially at fault for the injurious accident, the financial awards are reduced.

In this case, we have established that Susan was found to be 30 percent liable for the accident. Therefore, 30 percent of the total awarded damages will be eliminated from her compensation package. At the end of the day, Susan would walk away with a $70,000 settlement or verdict based on the $100,000 settlement minus 30 percent ($30,000). This is important to understand as a qualified attorney will fight to not only reach a successful conclusion to your case, but also to have your percentage of fault reduced as much as possible to allow the largest possible financial payout.

Contact our Trenton Comparative Negligence PI Attorneys Today

The personal injury attorneys of Kamensky, Cohen & Riechelson have been serving Mercer County clients in towns across Trenton, Lawrence, Princeton, Hamilton, New Brunswick, and all of Central New Jersey since 1972. We understand that recovering full and fair compensation is not just a matter of successfully resolving your claim, it is a matter of protecting your financial future for years to come. Our firm takes pride in offering high quality legal service while upholding strict ethical and professional standards. With offices in Trenton, NJ and Bensalem, PA, we are prepared to handle all manner of personal injury legal disputes for our clients.

To learn more about how your injury may lead to a successful personal injury settlement or verdict, please contact us online or call our Trenton offices today at (609) 528-2596 for a free and confidential consultation.

Driving While Intoxicated vs Driving While Drowsy

At a glance, this comparison seems like it might not even be worth the effort. However, scientific evidence all points to sleep deprivation being as dangerous, if not even more dangerous than driving after a few drinks. Does this mean that it’s okay to have one for the road? Absolutely not. Unfortunately, the pertinent takeaway is that drivers should be cautious to get behind the wheel if they are not fully rested. Today, our attorneys will be looking at the effects of both exhaustion and inebriation on motor vehicle operation and discussing the dangers of both.

Call our office today if you or a loved one has been injured in a car accidentmotorcycle accidentpedestrian accidents, or any other kind of motor vehicle accident involving a drunk or sleep deprived driver.

Mercer County Auto Accident Injury Attorneys: Effects of Alcohol on Drivers

Nearly thirty percent of all fatal traffic accidents involved alcohol in 2015. In that same year, there were over 100 million self-reported acts of driving drunk, and 1.1 million arrests for driving while intoxicated or driving under the influence of drugs. Not only is driving drunk illegal, but it can be extremely dangerous due to the following impacts it can have on drivers:

  • Reaction time and alertness are lowered with as little as 0.05 blood alcohol concentration (BAC)
  • Compromised coordination. Control over muscles, balance, speech centers, and vision are all lessened at around 0.08 percent BAC
  • Inhibitions are lessened, judgement is effected, and reasoning is compromised at 0.08 percent BAC
  • Short term memory issues at 0.08 BAC
  • At 15 percent BAC, muscle control is severely impaired, balance becomes a major issue, reaction times are further increased, and individuals may experience vomiting or loss of consciousness

Princeton Personal Injury Lawyers: Effects of Exhaustion on Drivers

Similar to driving while intoxicated, exhausted drivers experience impairments to both their physical and cognitive abilities. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, it is estimated that as many as 6,000 fatal motor vehicle accidents are caused by tired driving each year. The effects of drowsy driving include:

  • Distraction and inability to focus. This is actually often the most dangerous aspect of driving without proper rest. The sometimes hypnotizing feelings we can experience when traveling on familiar roads or featureless highways can be deadly when sleep deprived
  • Longer reaction times in response to stimuli
  • Impaired vision and cognitive functioning
  • Decision making and reasoning are weakened

Driving Drunk vs. Driving Drowsy Scientific Experiment

Perhaps the most famous experiment ever done on this subject was an episode of Discovery Channel’s hit show Mythbusters, where the gang performed a controlled study comparing driver performance. In order to set a solid baseline, both participants in the test drove on a test track which included city traffic, usual driving maneuvers such as stopping, sharp turns, and parallel parking, as well as a course meant to emulate straight and monotonous interstate highways.

One participant skipped a night of sleep while the other consumed several alcoholic drinks. The drunk driver performed approximately three (3) times worse than their control runs. However, the exhausted driver performed a shocking 10 times worse, leaving their lane, driving erratically, and repeatedly losing focus. These results should make all of us think twice before getting behind the wheel while drowsy.

Contact our Trenton Impaired Driving Accident Attorneys Today

The personal injury attorneys of Kamensky, Cohen & Riechelson have been serving clients injured in auto accidents since 1972 in our local New Jersey communities including Trenton, Princeton, Lawrence, Hamilton, New Brunswick, and the greater Mercer County area. Our firm has protected those injured by drunk drivers and sleep deprived drivers alike by successfully finding fault and recovering damages. Lean on our experience to recover the full and fair financial compensation your family needs and deserves to secure your financial future.

Contact us online or call our Trenton offices today by dialing (609) 528-2596 for a free and confidential consultation regarding your auto accident caused by a drunk or sleep deprived driver, your resulting injuries, and your potential personal injury claim.