Personal Injury Articles

First Steps in a Catastrophic Injury Case

If your loved one has been involved in an accident that resulted in a catastrophic injury, you must speak to a lawyer right away. Evidence does not get better- it disappears. We at The Segal Law Firm have the experience to investigate these types of cases to make sure that no piece of evidence goes unnoticed, but only if you call us sooner rather than later.   Because these catastrophic cases usually result in life-altering injuries, our first meetings with clients often take place in burn centers, rehabilitation centers, or even in critical care. During that meeting, we meet with the family and let them know what we can do to protect their legal rights. We want to get all of their questions answered to make sure they feel we are the right fit for their case.   If a client or family member decides that they’d like The Segal Law Firm to represent them, we provide a contingency fee contract. This is a written agreement guaranteeing that they will only pay attorney’s fees if we win them money, either by settlement or verdict.   So why is it so important that we have this first meeting as soon as …

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Catastrophic Injury Cases: Predicting Your Future

In a catastrophic injury case your lawyer must have the experience and the experts to prove what the rest of your life is going to look like.   What do I mean by that? Well, part of our job in preparing a catastrophic injury case here at The Segal Law Firm is to determine what your needs are going to be over the course of your entire life. If you’ve been paralyzed, we’re going to need a doctor who understands paralysis. How often are you going to have to see specialty doctors because of your risk for blood clots, urinary tract infections, or bed sores?   What kind of care are you going to need? You’re definitely not going to use one wheelchair for the rest of your life. You’re going to need several different types wheelchairs; one for around the house, another for going out to eat and maybe another for getting outdoors to hunt or fish. What type of equipment are you going to need for the rest of your life? Will you need a van with two air conditioners and adapted driving devices? Maybe you’ll need a home that has an exit ramp so you can easily get …

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Do I Need a West Virginia Lawyer?

“If I’m from out of state and am hurt in West Virginia, is it necessary to have a West Virginia lawyer?” I don’t think I’d use the word ‘necessary,’ but I certainly think it’s in your best interest.   A West Virginia lawyer with the kind of experience the we have at The Segal Law Firm is going to know West Virginia law, West Virginia judges, and West Virginia juries better than an out of state lawyer. But is it absolutely necessary? The answer is no. The thing is, if you get an out of state lawyer, they’re going to have to hire a West Virginia lawyer anyway because they can’t practice law here unless they happen to be licensed. It’s not unusual for us to work with out of state law firms to help clients who have been hurt in West Virginia.   Right now I’m handling a case for a Canadian woman who was severely injured in a motorcycle accident here in West Virginia. Her Canadian lawyer called me and asked me if I would be willing to help. Once I realized how badly she was hurt I, of course, agreed. So, in the end, you are going …

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What is a Mass Tort Case?

The answer is pretty simple: a mass tort case involves a large group of people who were hurt by a singular event. The most famous one in West Virginia was probably the Upper Big Branch disaster, which took the lives of twenty-nine people as a result of one explosion. Another example would be the asbestos that has poisoned thousands of West Virginia workers since the 1940s. Mass tort cases in West Virginia are handled by mass litigation panels that help experienced lawyers move the cases through the system with great efficiency.   If you have the disease mesothelioma, which was caused by the asbestos used to insulate factories in the forties, fifties, sixties and early seventies, your case will be handled as a mass tort case in West Virginia. It will be streamlined by the mass litigation panel. There’s one judge on this panel who tries mesothelioma cases four times a year, which is usually about fifteen to twenty cases each time. As a result of that, we know what discovery needs to happen and what documents we need to prepare in order to get your case to trial.   The Segal Law Firm knows what information is required by …

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Class Action Cases: A Vehicle for the Masses

Class action lawsuits are a vehicle for several people with a similar type claim to bring a case against the same defendant all at once. Usually it involves everyone getting hurt by the same medicine or getting overcharged by the same financial institution. The good news is, you’re offered plenty of protection as part of the class action.   Let’s say the bank overcharges you five cents for a check. Well, you can’t sue the bank for five cents or even five hundred dollars! In fact, it would cost you more to hire a lawyer. But if all the people who use that bank and those checks got together in a class action, they would be able to afford to sue the bank and get that money back. That’s why you see a lot of class actions against financial institutions, lending companies and credit card companies.   It can also involve certain types of medicine. If a drug is put on the market that is dangerous and the FDA had been misled by the drug company, groups of people can ban together to bring a class action. They might ask for things like medical monitoring, which is a certain type …

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Is There a Difference Between Accident Lawyers & Injury Lawyers?

If you are seeking the services of a lawyer, it may be confusing when you see lawyers who call themselves accident lawyers or injury lawyers, and you may wonder how they differentiate between the two. In my opinion, there really is no difference and although lawyers may state they specialize in specific areas, what really counts is their experience. You need to ask how many injury cases they have tried to a jury; or if they claim they are an accident lawyer, then exactly how many cases have they investigated, filed and resolved, either by mitigation, settlement or winning a case in a trial. If they tell you that you will be their first one – run! For example, if you were in need of a doctor to perform a procedure, you would definitely want to know if they are experienced with that procedure, and it’s no different with lawyers, because your lawyer needs to be experienced with your specific type of case. In the state of West Virginia, a lawyer cannot call himself a specialist; they can tell you their level of experience and the types of cases they have filed, discovered and tried, but they cannot tell you …

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Average Settlement Amount in Electrical Accident or Injury Cases

If you or your family are seeking advice regarding an electrical accident or death, the Segal Law Firm doesn’t believe in cookie-cutter averages. We don’t feel it is fair to a client to hand over a number which might not actually have anything to do with your case at all. Some of our clients have settled in the area of $100,000 to $300,000 and others have settled for multi-millions of dollars. We prefer to examine each case individually and determine what sort of injury you received, or if death was the result of an electrical accident. By nature, electrical accidents can cause everything from simple burns to limbs being completely burned off, gruesome scarring, blindness, loss of motor function and death. If a client needs debridement, this is a difficult procedure and they must then go down a very long road to recovery. A case we handled a few years ago was the result of someone literally having their arm blown off from electricity and it also required amputation of their leg. More often than not, the Segal Law Firm has had great success in finding large amounts of insurance or even big companies who are responsible for these injuries …

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What is the Average Cost to Hire an Injury Lawyer in West Virginia?

Here in West Virginia, the average cost to hire a competent and experienced injury lawyer ranges between 25 and 40%, and that will depend on the actual costs and complexity associated with your case. The Segal Law Firm sometimes has cases where there isn’t a lot of insurance available as a result of an automobile accident. A common assumption is that most people think the at-fault driver’s insurance is their only recourse. Our job is to find what insurance is available and then collect it. Many people aren’t aware that their own car insurance sometimes has extra coverages in the event of a wrongful death motor vehicle accident. We check for double-indemnity policies at your workplace, insurance on your mortgage and on your car itself or the car loan. If insurance is limited and costs associated with your case are small, we may sometimes lower our cost to you to 25%. Typical injury cases range between a third and 35%, with complex cases running around 40%. A complex case is one that will require a lot of experts. Mesothelioma Cases If you have a Mesothelioma case, which is a disease of the lining of the lung or gut from asbestos …

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Coal Mining Regulations- Crucial to Winning Your Case

We’ve all seen tragic mine stories on the news. What you don’t get to see is what happens to the widows and children of these lost miners after cameras turn off.  My job at The Segal Law Firm is to provide protection for the miners’ families and I do that by delving into the state and federal regulations that set the safety guidelines for the coal mines. Often times, these regulations have been broken in some way or another and you need an attorney that understands the rules, so they know where to start looking for answers. What Type of Mine? The first thing I’m going to do when I find out a coal miner has been killed in an accident is determine if it happened in a deep mine or a surface mine. The answer to that question is going to affect which state and federal laws were in place to protect them while they were at work. You have to know where it happened so you can begin to look at the very complex set of regulations that are in place to protect the miners. Training and Licensing Let’s say it was a deep mine. Well, deep miners …

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What Makes for the Best Personal Injury Attorneys and Lawyers?

An experienced lawyer or attorney is of utmost importance if you have a personal injury case. It’s important to you because you are hurt and it’s important to your family and loved ones because they suffer as well. It’s also important to the opposing side that they understand your lawyer has handled your type of cases before and is prepared to defend you in front of jury. If your lawyer is lacking in experience, the other side might decide to drag your case out and fight to the point where you accept pennies on the dollar and this is not fair to you. Check out Your Lawyer’s Experience by His Rankings You need a law firm who will fight and go the distance to obtain the money you deserve because your injury is a result of wrongdoing. Segal Law has that ability and I am pleased to say that I am a ranked lawyer by the agency of Martindale-Hubble. I am also the only lawyer from West Virginia to become a member of the Inner Circle of Advocates. You can look on the web to find out how lawyers are ranked, but beware of those rankings that are paid for …

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