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Category Archives: Personal Injury

San Jose car accident lawyerWhen you have been hurt in a car accident or any other type of incident caused by the actions or negligence of another, you may be entitled to seek compensation for your injuries. Such compensation is usually intended to cover your medical bills, lost wages, property damage, and other measurable losses, but may also include non-economic damages such as pain and suffering or considerations for scarring or disfigurement. Collecting any kind of compensation can be challenging, however, and it is important to understand the steps that may be involved.

Filing a Claim

In most cases, your first step after an accident is to file a claim with the insurance company of the party responsible for the accident. The claims process typically includes the exchange of pertinent information between the parties, as well as any reports filed with the police or other law enforcement agencies. While the case is in the claims stage, you will likely need to offer some proof to the insurance company to show that their insured was at fault. Depending on the circumstances, the insurance company may offer you a settlement to offset your losses. If you accept the settlement, you waive your right to future legal action, so you should never accept a proposal without speaking with your attorney.

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Bay Area wrongful death lawyerEarlier this month, a fire tore through a party in a converted warehouse in Oakland, killing 36 people. The warehouse was known throughout the Bay Area arts community as the “Ghost Ship,” offering residential, studio, and performance spaces to local artists and musicians. As investigations into the fire continue, a number of major concerns have come to light about the building’s safety and lack of required permits. Such issues may be important considerations in determining potential liability for the deaths of victims.

Alleged Illegal Construction and Unlicensed Use

It is often difficult for low-income individuals to find suitable, affordable housing in the Bay Area, leading many to cut corners in an effort to save money. This seems to have been the case of the Ghost Ship, a former warehouse on 131st Street in Oakland. The couple who operated the building reportedly converted it into a sort of collective for struggling artists and musicians but did so without securing permits or code inspections required by the city. The last permit on record approved the building for use as a warehouse only, not as a performance space or residence.

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dog bites, insurance coverage, San Jose personal injury attorneyEvery five years, the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) releases the U.S. Pet Ownership & Demographics Sourcebook ranking the top/lowest ten states sharing a home with a pet, most often domesticated canines. As per the 2013 AVMA report, California ranked among the lowest ten states proclaiming pet ownership. It was reported that 52.9 percent of the California population shared their home with a domesticated pet but no matter where state rankings stand, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) reports that approximately 4.5 million dog bites still occur every year across the United States.

Statistically, the complexities of pet ownership run even deeper than just welcoming your four-legged friend into the family fold. The Insurance Information Institute reported that in 2014, California residents reported 1,867 dog-related injury claims with an average cost of $33,649 per claim. It is understandable that dog-bite injuries can become a household’s largest liability and often leading to intricate legalities and lawsuits. It is often riskier for those who rent in comparison to homeowners who are minimally covered under their homeowner’s insurance policy. 

The costs associated with a dog bite claim have skyrocketed, so much so that in 2013, Farmers Insurance of California placed breed restrictions within their coverage often turning away business or denying a claim if a homeowner owned one of the following breeds: 

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appellate court, gas leak, San Jose personal injury lawyerWhen you have been hurt in any type of incident caused by the actions or negligence of another party, you deserve to collect compensation for your injuries. Your road to recovery may be made even easier when the responsible party admits their liability relatively early in the process. Admission of liability does not necessarily mean that everything is completely resolved, as a San Gabriel man recently learned. His compensation may finally be on its way, though, as a California appellate court last week upheld a $20 million verdict against a local utility provider.

Lighting a Cigarette

In 2011, the claimant was living in a remodeled garage in San Gabriel. According to court records, an employee of the Southern California Gas Company, opened a valve which allowed the man’s residence to fill with natural gas. When the resident went to light a cigarette, the gas-filled garage exploded, causing him severe burns and a traumatic brain injury, which experts believe will lead to dementia by about age 50. For a man who was only 23 at the time of the explosion, the impact is expected to be life-changing.

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train safety, jurisdiction, San Jose personal injury attorneyThe U.S. civil court system is an institution that has been established to protect the rights of those who have been wronged or injured in some way. When a party has suffered losses due to the actions or negligence of another, the damaged party may be forced to rely on the courts to provide the compensation and justice he or she needs and deserves. There are limits, however, to what the American justice system can do, especially when the case involves injuries that occurred in another country.

Continuing Trend

Earlier this month, the Supreme Court of the United States issued its first ruling of the new term, reversing a decision by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals that allowed a suit to continue in American court over an injury occurring in Innsbruck, Austria. The High Court unanimously rejected the lower court’s ruling on the grounds that the focal point of the case centered around events that took place outside of the United States, and that the American courts do not have sufficient jurisdiction to make a binding ruling. This marks the third time in less than four years that the Supreme Court has limited the reach of the U.S. court system.

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Janoff Law,
A Professional Corporation
1570 The Alameda, Suite 221, San Jose, CA 95126 408-286-2300
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