What to do after a motorcycle accident

A motorcycle accident is every rider’s nightmare. If you are involved in one, it is important to do certain things right away to ensure your safety and that of others and to protect yourself legally. Remember these steps so that you know what do should you ever find yourself in an accident.

Get help. First, you should check to see if anyone, including yourself, has been injured. Call 911 for help if need be and follow the instructions given by the dispatcher. If no one is hurt call your local police department for assistance.

Document the scene. As long as it is safe to do so, take plenty of photos with your cellphone or another camera before the scene is disturbed. Capture the motorcycle, any other vehicles involved, the surroundings, injuries, and whatever else you think may be relevant. These photos may be important to an insurance claim or court case.

Move your bike, if possible. If you are able, try to make the area safe for other drivers. Get your bike or loose debris off of the road so that another unsuspecting motorist does not cause further damage or make the accident worse.

Take notes. Writing down as much information as you can is important because you are very likely to forget things if you simply rely on memory. Get names and contact information of all witnesses, descriptions of any involved vehicles such as make, model, color, plate numbers, names of responding officers and any other relevant information. Notice and describe the conditions at the scene too, especially those that led to the accident such as slippery roads or weather.

Call your insurance company. You will want to speak to an agent about your accident as soon as you are able and answer their questions about injuries or damages. Be careful though, do not admit fault for the accident and do not downplay anything. Sometimes the true extent of the damage will not be apparent until later.

Call an experienced attorney. You may want to hire an attorney to answer your questions and help you through the complicated process that will surely follow your accident. Be sure to contact an attorney with experience handling motorcycle accidents, like the professionals at Joyce and Reyes Law Firm, P.A. We have over 32 years of experience with accident cases.

What to do after an Uber accident

With the recent popularity of ride sharing services, using Uber to get around is an ordinary part of the day for millions of people around the world. Uber drivers are not immune to vehicle accidents, however, and you may not know what to do if you are involved in one as a passenger. There are steps to take immediately after an Uber crash that can keep you safe and make the process of recovering any damages you may deserve easier.

First, get help. Check yourself, the driver or any other person involved in the accident for injuries. Call 911 or the local police department if necessary. Everyone’s first concern should be with the health and safety of everyone at the accident scene. Be wary of the role adrenaline can play after an accident and how it dulls pain. You may feel okay initially but realize you have been hurt after some time has passed.

Document the scene. If you are able, take pictures of the vehicles and other parts of the scene that you deem relevant. These could come in handy in a future court case or insurance claim. Collect names and contact information for all involved parties and witnesses. Take notes on the scene and the driver’s state. Could they be intoxicated? Were there environmental factors, such as icy roads, that caused the accident?

Contact Uber. The driver may be hesitant to contact the company because they are afraid to lose their job. You should report the accident without delay because there needs to be a record of the accident on file. If no injuries were sustained and the very least you suffered was some inconvenience, Uber will likely refund your ride fee. If you were hurt, you will have a more complicated process but you will be covered by Uber’s million dollar insurance policy.

Call an experienced attorney. As an Uber passenger you are protected in almost all cases. Contact an attorney with Uber accident experience to be sure you are receiving the money that you deserve. The professionals at Joyce and Reyes Law Firm, P.A are well versed in the intricacies of ride sharing service accidents. Contact them at https://www.joyceandreyespa.com for a free consultation.

What to Do After a Car Accident

Car accidents are potentially life-changing events that can do far more the physically cripple victims. Under many circumstances, car accidents also can bankrupt victims when the medical costs greatly exceed any insurance coverage amounts. The following tips should help to ensure maximum payouts when involved in a car accident.

Almost everyone has a cellphone that can take photographs and record audio and video. The smart watches gaining popularity across the nation also provide similar data-gathering tools. Those tools work great for photographing the accident scene. They also help to show road and weather conditions, traffic flow, and even can aid in collecting witness statements. They can also store the contact information of any witnesses.

Another critically important thing to do is obtain medical treatment. Car accidents can cause injuries that do not make themselves apparent until some time afterward. That includes neck and back injuries that often go unnoticed. Adrenaline and other physiological factors can mask moderate or even serious injuries, and obtaining medical treatment right away is the best way to affirm the car accident caused the injuries.

Whenever suffering financial losses due to medical costs or property damage after an accident, retaining an experienced car accident attorney helps to keep insurance adjusters at bay. The insurance companies will contact accident victims right away and try to get them to make statements that work against them. That includes trying to get victims to admit some sort of fault or agree to a premature settlement amount. An attorney ensures maximum compensation for injuries and property damages. For more information on what to do after a car accident, contact the experienced attorneys at Joyce & Reyes.

Uber, Lyft are driving accident fatalities

In large cities, ride-hailing services provide an affordable alternative to taxi cabs, without the hassle of mass public transportation systems. Uber is the king of ride-hailing services, with Lyft a slightly distant second across the nation. Since their sudden rise starting in 2011, a new study suggests they have increased traffic fatalities in large cities by up to 3 percent. That adds up to about 1,100 additional roadway deaths each year, mostly on congested city streets.

There are two ways the general public will be involved in an accident with Uber, Lyft or other ride-hailing services drivers. The first and most likely is as the driver or passenger of another vehicle. That provides some measure of insurance protection for financial losses due to the liability limits on either vehicle. If costs exceed insurance coverage limits, though, accident victims could wind up filing for bankruptcy.

The second way someone might be in an accident involving a driver for Uber, Lyft or other ride-hailing service as a passenger. Such accidents get more complicated due to the nature of car insurance coverage. Most Uber and other ride-hailing drivers use their own cars with their own insurance policies.

Personal car insurance, though, does not cover commercial activities. Instead, the driver must have a commercial car insurance plan in place to provide coverage for injuries and property damage. The additional complications of insurance coverage for ride-hailing service providers makes it important to have an experienced Uber accident attorney to protect accident victims. The personal injury attorneys at Joyce & Reyes can help.

Common signs of nursing home abuse

Placing a loved one in a nursing home is often a very difficult decision that a family has to make. Usually, a family makes this decision because ultimately they believe their loved one will have a better life and be well taken care of. However, in some Florida nursing facilities, families learn that not only is their loved one not being taken care of properly, they are also being actively abused. Currently in the United States, there are close to 3 million people housed in various forms of nursing facilities. By far, most of these facilities do their jobs and do them well. But there are some facilities and some staff members who fail in their responsibilities.

In some instances, the care does not meet the requirement set by Federal and state laws and regulations. In these nursing homes, they could be short staffed; therefore, not all residents get the care and help that they deserve. Also, many staff people could be trying their best but they are poorly trained and make mistakes, thus harming the residents in some fashion. In order to make sure that your loved one is truly being taken care of properly, there are signs and symptoms of nursing home abuse and neglect that you should regularly check for:

  • If the resident has decubitus ulcers or pressure ulcers (more commonly known as bedsores);
  • If the resident was injured in a fall and fall protection devices were not in use or were improperly used;
  • Unexplained injuries suffered by the resident;
  • Signs of dehydration, such as cracked/chapped lips, dry skin, sunken eyes and cramping of the muscles;
  • You regularly notice that the nursing home workers are overworked and/or understaffed;
  • Signs of malnutrition such as sudden weight loss, loss of muscle mass, dizziness, dry hair and skin, lack of energy;
  • Infected sores that will not heal or keep returning for an unexplained reason;
  • When a nursing home attempts to limit the access to your loved one;
  • Residents that regularly appear to be overmedicated and are always sleeping or drowsy or confused;
  • When a resident dies, unexpectedly, and there is no apparent cause of the death.

Whatever type of abuse or neglect case your loved one is facing, a nursing home abuse attorney can help you investigate the incident(s) and determine if further investigation or even a lawsuit is necessary. Contact the nursing home abuse attorneys at Joyce & Reyes and we will fight for your loved one’s rights. If we find evidence of abuse or neglect, we will inform the nursing home of our findings to give them a chance to respond. Most nursing home will often agree to settle the matter out of court. However, in some instances, a civil lawsuit needs to be filed seeking monetary damages. We will handle the case from start to finish and make sure your loved one is safe. The initial consultation is free.

Accident involving pedestrian ends in fatality

On September 14, 2018, a fatal accident involving a Gibsonton woman occurred on U.S. 301 in Hillsborough County, Florida.

The pedestrian accident occurred near Sabal Industrial Boulevard. The Florida Highway Patrol reported that the woman was walking southbound on the side of U.S. 301 when she was struck in the head by the side mirror of a Ford E350 truck as it was passing her. The victim was transported to Tampa General Hospital where she was pronounced dead.

Car crashes involving pedestrians can often cause catastrophic and fatal injuries. This is because, pedestrians have no physical protections when struck by a vehicle that weighs thousands of pounds. There are many causes of pedestrian accidents:

  • Distracted driving
  • Speeding
  • Rolling through stop signs
  • Making a left-hand turn through an intersection without looking

Tampa pedestrian accident lawyer Robert T. Joyce, Esquire has stated that, “Car and truck accidents involving pedestrians can be very complicated to recreate. It is difficult to establish exactly where the pedestrian was on the road. Further, it is difficult to establish exactly what the driver of the vehicle was doing when the impact occurred. That is why an injured party needs an experienced lawyer to fully investigate the incident to determine who was at fault.”

If you have been involved in an accident involving a large truck or tractor-trailer, please do not hesitate to contact the truck accident lawyers at Joyce & Reyes at (813) 251-2007. The initial consultation is free.

Serious injuries caused by dump truck accident in Hillsborough County, Florida

On August 22, 2018, three children and one adult were seriously injured when a dump truck hit their vehicle head-on. The crash occurred on US 309 in Hillsborough County, Florida.

The Florida Highway Patrol reported that the dump truck driver failed to see stopped traffic in front of him and swerved into the opposite lane and oncoming traffic. It was at this point that the dump truck struck a Ford Explorer head-on, causing serious injuries to the 40-year-old driver of the Explorer and three children who were passengers.

The driver and the children were transported to Tampa General Hospital with serious injuries. It was reported that a 6-year-old boy was in critical condition.

Being involved in an accident with a large truck can be devastating to a family. Due to the size of the truck involved, the impact of the crash can cause very serious injuries or death. Some semi-trucks and tractor-trailers can weigh up to 80,000 pounds.

The number of large trucks on Florida’s roads and highways is increasing. Nationwide, crashes involving large trucks have increased every year since 2009. The percentage of fatal truck accidents has increased 42 percent between 2009 and 2017, the latest year this data is available.

If you have been involved in an accident involving a large truck or tractor-trailer, contact the truck accident lawyers at Joyce & Reyes at (813) 251-2007. The initial consultation is free.

Medical malpractice victims in Florida may now keep the total jury award

Medical malpractice claims a large number of victims in the United States each year. In fact, the number of medical malpractice suits filed is increasing. On average, the number of suits filed each year is about 85,000. The number of medical negligence or medical malpractice injuries is estimated to be roughly one million per year.

At one time Florida, and many other states, had a cap or limit on the amount of damages a plaintiff could receive for medical malpractice. The cap was put in place to, among other reasons, discourage fraudulent medical malpractice cases by limiting how much each plaintiff could win. In June 2017, the Florida Supreme Court ruled in North Broward Hosp. Dist. v. Kalitan that medical malpractice damage caps are unconstitutional. The state Supreme Court ultimately stated that damage caps “reduce awards for plaintiffs who sustain the most drastic injuries.”

In North Broward Hosp. Dist. v. Kalitan, a Florida resident went to the hospital for a carpal tunnel procedure. During the operation, an endotracheal tube punctured the patient’s gullet, an injury that remained undiscovered while the patient was given pain medications for severe back and chest pains.

The patient was discharged but passed out at home and was rushed back to the emergency room. The victim filed a medical malpractice lawsuit asking the court for compensation for their cataclysmic injury. The trial jury handed down a $4 million verdict. However, the plaintiff received only $700,000 thanks to the damage cap.

Florida Supreme Court’s decision in North Broward Hosp. Dist. v. Kalitan set a precedent for future medical negligence claims in Florida and potentially nation-wide. Medical malpractice plaintiffs in Florida can now recover fair compensation for every injury sustained as a result of medical negligence without fear of a cap reducing an award.

If you feel that you have been the victim of medical malpractice, reach out and contact Joyce & Reyes, who have over 30 years of experience in handling medical malpractice cases. Have your case professionally assessed by competent and knowledgeable medical malpractice attorneys, find out your legal rights and how to move forward with filing a claim. Every Tampa medical malpractice case is accepted on a contingency basis. That means you are not responsible for attorney fees and costs unless the case is successful.

Types and symptoms of nursing home abuse

Nursing home abuse and elder neglect is a serious offense. Senior care facilities owe residents a reasonable standard of care. All residents of a nursing home facility deserve to not be neglected and abused. To ensure quality care, nursing homes and their staff should be capable, competent, caring and well trained.

Not all homes, however, provide their residents with standard care. Some nursing homes do not conduct proper background checks on staff, which may result in hiring unqualified people to perform critical duties.

Nursing home abuse comes in many forms. The National Center on Elder Abuse recognizes seven types of elder abuse:

  • Physical abuse
  • Sexual abuse
  • Emotional/psychological abuse
  • Neglect
  • Abandonment
  • Financial abuse
  • Self neglect

Physical abuse

Nursing home physical abuse can include actions such as, shaking, burning, kicking, pushing and beating with hands or an object. Other forms of elder physical abuse include force feeding and/or using physical or chemical restraints. Signs of physical abuse include: welts, bruising, broken bones, skull fractures, mysterious cuts, sprains, lacerations, open wounds, over or under medication or broken personal items.

Sexual abuse

Elder sexual abuse is a serious offense. Sexual abuse can take many forms and can include sodomy, sexual assault, taking pictures of a resident when they are nude, unwanted touching and intercourse. Signs of sexual abuse may include: bruised genitals, genital infections, bleeding from genitals/anus and sexually transmitted diseases.

Emotional/psychological abuse

Emotional or psychological abuse is often hard to detect as it does not have physical symptoms. Emotional abuse can take many forms such as, social isolation of the resident, verbal abuse and neglect. Signs of psychological abuse may include: unusual behavior mimicking dementia, resident is withdrawn/not responsive and/or the resident is agitated.

Elder neglect

Elder neglect is described as failing or refusing to provide necessities of life to a senior. Signs or neglect include: the elder living in unsanitary or hazardous conditions, dehydration, malnutrition, no care for health problems, untreated bed sores and reports of mistreatment by the senior.

Elder abandonment

Elder abandonment occurs when the person and/or people responsible for the senior fail or refuse to care for them. Signs or elder neglect may include seniors reporting they have been abandoned, nursing home staff ignoring a resident’s needs.

Financial abuse

Financial abuse occurs when the nursing home’s staff steals a senior’s possessions and money, forges signatures on financial and legal documents, forces signatures on documents the senior does not understand, and abuses their power of attorney rights. Signs of financial abuse can include sudden changes to legal documents, large amounts of money being transferred out of a senior’s bank account and frequent and sudden ATM card usage.

Self neglect

Self neglect can occur when a senior carries out behaviors that are a danger to their health or safety, such as refusing to drink the proper amount of water, not eating properly, not dressing adequately and/or having poor hygiene. Signs of self neglect can signal poor nursing home maintenance, low staff numbers, negligent staff members or an unsanitary nursing home.

If you are concerned about a loved one’s treatment in a nursing home, then contact Joyce & Reyes the nursing home abuse personal injury attorneys. Let us assist you get the compensation you deserve. At Joyce & Reyes we have over 30 years of experience in personal injury cases. We will stand for your rights to obtain the highest compensation possible for injuries sustained as a result of abuse of a loved one in a nursing home facility.

What to do after a car crash

An automobile accident can be traumatic. Car crashes are jarring and disorienting experiences, especially if you have been injured. However, there are things you should do, right after a car accident.

  1. Call 911. The most important thing to do is to call for help. Call 911 as quickly as possible. Even if you are not hurt, call immediately because other people might be injured. Also, the police can investigate the accident and interview witnesses right away.
  2. Collect insurance information. If the other driver has insurance, get their information, this includes: insurance company name, address, policy number and phone number of the company. If an insurance card is given to you, also note if the insurance policy is still in effect and not expired. If the cause of the crash was the fault of the other driver you will want insurance information so that your property damage can get fixed. Also, if you were injured in the accident, your lawyer will want the information in order to file a claim for personal injury damages, if possible.
  3. Document what happened. Take pictures of the crash site. Also, write up your own statement of what happened, what was said and who was there. Get names and addresses and phone numbers of all of the possible witnesses.
  4. Get treatment. If you believe you were injured, seek medical help as soon as possible. Seeking medical treatment immediately after an automobile accident will help establish your injury, if you have one.
  5. Contact an experienced car accident attorney. Do not try to negotiate with the insurance company on your own. Contact an experienced attorney who knows the value of cases and can help you walk through the mind-field of personal injury litigation.

If you have been injured in a car accident, please do not hesitate to contact the car accident lawyers at Joyce & Reyes at (813) 251-2007. The initial consultation is free.