Why You Shouldn’t “DIY” Injury Cases

Personal Injury Lawyers

A few years back, the concept of “DIY” made a resurgence in popular culture. The idea that “do(ing) it yourself” approaches are laudable tend to ebb and flow as society’s priorities shift back and forth. Even before the pandemic hit – and a significant fraction of Americans were isolated in their homes for months on end – DIY culture was in a cycle of approval rather than rejection.

Yet, even when DIY approaches are popular, there are some tasks that you just shouldn’t undertake on your own. For example, you shouldn’t attempt to administer your own anesthesia during a surgery, nor should you attempt to extract your own teeth. Why? Some situations require professional knowledge and experience that lay people can’t pick up by trial and error or through application of hard work. Similarly, if you have recently been injured and believe that you may be owed compensation, you shouldn’t “DIY” your own personal injury lawsuit.

Maximizing Your Compensation Is the Goal

As an experienced personal injury lawyer – including those who practice at Davis, Johnson & Kallal – can confirm, it is very difficult for self-represented injury victims to secure the maximum amount of compensation they’re owed. It is often very difficult for self-represented injury victims to simply receive a minimally fair compensation award, let alone the full amount of compensation to which they are entitled.

This is partially because the law is a profession. Like accountants, physicians, and architects, lawyers are considered “professionals” because they spend years in graduate school receiving advance training and are required to complete ongoing educational requirements to remain licensed. The legal system isn’t designed for lay people to navigate it with ease. And although courts will allow you to represent yourself – just as you’re entitled to treat your own medical conditions at home – it simply isn’t easy in the least to achieve the same kind of favorable outcome on your own that an attorney could pursue on your behalf.

You Need to Focus on Healing

It takes a surprising amount of physical, mental, and emotional energy to heal from any kind of trauma. Whether you’ve been involved in a car accident or you took a nasty spill in a retail parking lot, you need to be smart about conserving energy where you can as you heal. Allowing an experienced attorney to haggle with insurance companies, gather evidence for your lawsuit, and generally handle all of the “heavy lifting” that pursuing justice entails will better ensure that you can focus your energy on your recovery process.

Lawsuits Are Time-Sensitive

Gathering evidence, building a case, and navigating all the ins and outs of the legal process takes time. If you’re working, healing, caring for loved ones, etc., you likely do not have the time it will take to achieve a favorable verdict on your hands. Pursuing justice is a lawyer’s “day job.” As a result, they have resources to commit to your case that you likely do not at this time.

5 Steps To Filing A Car Accident Claim

If you have been involved in a car accident, it can be difficult to know what to do next according to a car accident lawyer at Cohen Legal. It’s important to understand the process of filing a car accident claim, so you can get the compensation you deserve. A lawyer can provide you with the guidance and expertise you need to navigate the system, but here are the basic steps outlined below:

1) Obtain a Police Report

A police report can provide valuable evidence to support your case if you decide to pursue a car accident claim. The police report will include details of the accident such as the date, time, and location of the crash, as well as any other pertinent information. In some states, it is mandatory to contact the police after an auto accident. Regardless of whether or not this is a requirement, it is still highly advisable to contact the authorities and file a police report for your own benefit. This will document all parties involved in the accident as well as any witnesses that may have seen it happen. It will also serve as an official record of the accident which could be used as evidence in court should your case go to trial.

2) Take Photographs

After making sure that everyone is safe and medical help has been requested, take out your phone or camera and start snapping photos of the crash scene. Make sure you get shots of all cars involved, the surrounding area, any damage to objects like street signs or guard rails, and any visible injuries to you and your passengers. Photographs can be crucial in proving fault and damages in an accident claim, so it’s essential that you get as many pictures as possible. If possible, try to get close-up photos of any damage to vehicles, as well as wide-angle shots that show the positions of the cars involved. It’s also important to document the aftermath of the accident too. Take pictures of any debris left at the scene and take down the license plate numbers of all cars involved.

3) Get Medical Attention

It is important to get checked out by a doctor, even if you do not feel any pain or symptoms at the time of the accident. Oftentimes, injuries can take time to manifest and you may not be aware that you have been injured until hours or days after the accident. By obtaining medical attention right away, it will ensure that any potential injuries are treated immediately and prevent any further injury from occurring.

4) Hire an Attorney

When involved in a car accident, it’s important to hire an experienced and knowledgeable car accident lawyer. An attorney can protect your rights and interests throughout the process of filing a claim or lawsuit. They will help you understand the legal processes that are necessary to maximize your financial recovery.  Having an attorney on your side can be incredibly beneficial, as they have extensive knowledge about the legal system and will ensure that you have the best chance at getting a favorable outcome in your case. Additionally, they may be able to negotiate with the insurance company to get you a larger settlement than you would be able to get on your own.

If you’ve been injured in a car accident, contact a car accident attorney in your area for help immediately.

The Four Elements of Medical Malpractice

Medical malpractice is a legal course of action that occurs when a health care provider causes an injury to a patient through omission or negligence. This can happen during diagnosis, treatment, aftercare, or health management. Patients place much of their trust in their medical providers, but these professionals are human too, and mistakes can happen. Even with the inherent flaws that people have and can make, it is no excuse for when a patient suffers. While state laws vary, there are four general elements in proving medical malpractice.

#1 Patient-Provider Relationship

The first thing you must establish is that you hired a provider to offer care and they accepted. This prevents people from suing medical providers for following advice they may have heard on the radio or television. If you had an appointment at a doctor’s office, it is easy to prove that the relationship between the patient and the provider existed. Once they begin treating you, the provider is legally obligated to meet a standard of care. If that is not met, negligence can be established.

#2 Breached Standard of Care

If a provider does not meet the standard of care established within their specialty, they may be found negligent. Ultimately, if another doctor with similar educational background and experience would have known to make the same mistake, then the treating doctor may have committed malpractice. But this can look different for each case depending on the patient, how the doctor made an error, and the severity of harm done to the patient because of it. Some examples may include:

  • Not collecting the medical history of a patient
  • Failing to order tests or misinterpreting results
  • Misdiagnosing a condition
  • Errors performing surgery
  • Prescribing incorrect medication

As a personal injury lawyer explains, proving this can be a lengthy process, with many people wanting to offer opinions to the victim. However, the most reliable insight will be from a lawyer who handles personal injury cases. A patient has the right to expect a provider will provide care consistent with accepted standards.

#3 Injury Due to Negligence

Violating a standard of care is not enough to prove malpractice. An injury must also result from the negligence of the provider. The patient must prove that the injury would not have occurred otherwise. Receiving unwanted medical news or diagnosis is not automatically viewed as medical malpractice, since some conditions are terminal and treatment is meant to keep the patient comfortable. If the case moves towards trial, medical experts may be used to provide testimony during this part of the process.

#4 Damages

Since these cases may require expert testimony, the patient will need to show significant damages resulting from the negligence. Minor damages may not be worth the cost of pursuing malpractice. If you believe you or a loved one was a victim of medical malpractice, it is important to contact a lawyer that handles cases like these. You cannot sue for medical malpractice if you can’t prove harm was done. This is known as damages and can include monetary and non-monetary factors such as:

  • Physical or mental harm
  • Medical bills
  • Lost wages
  • Wrongful death

These claims are detailed and can become lengthy. Having a law firm work on your case, similar to the team at Council & Associates, LLC, can help you recover damages you lost due to a provider’s negligence.

Insurance Companies & Personal Injury - Laptop with medical diagnostic software and stethoscope

Insurance Companies & Personal Injury

Personal Injury Lawyer

Insurance companies are in the business of making money. They make billions of dollars every year, and they often put their profits ahead of the best interest of their insured. This can be seen in a number of ways, such as when they refuse to pay out claims or when they increase premiums without justification. In some cases, insurance companies have even been caught cheating their customers. It is important to be aware of these practices and to know your rights as an insured person.

One way that insurance companies put profits ahead of the best interest of their customers is by refusing to pay out claims. This can be for a number of reasons, such as when the company believes that the policyholder was not actually injured or when they think that the policyholder is trying to fraudulently collect on the policy. Insurance companies also like to increase premiums without justification. This means that they will raise your rates for no reason other than to make more money. Some companies have even been caught cheating their customers, such as by canceling policies without notice or increasing premiums without justification.

Insurance is a way for people to protect themselves from financial loss. It is a contract between the policyholder and the insurance company, in which the company agrees to pay for certain losses or damages incurred by the policyholder. There are a number of different types of insurance, including car insurance, health insurance, and homeowners insurance. Each type of insurance has its own set of rules and regulations. It is important to read your policy carefully and understand what is covered and what is not covered. If you have any questions, contact the insurance company and ask them for clarification. It is also important to keep track of your policy status and make sure that you are up-to-date on all payments. If you do not pay your premiums, your policy may be canceled and you will not be covered for any losses or damages. 

When it comes time to file a claim, it is important to have all the necessary documentation handy. This includes copies of your policy, receipts for any repairs or medical bills, and witness statements. The more evidence you have, the stronger your case will be. Contact a personal injury lawyer if you need help filing a claim.

Thanks to our friends at JSM Injury Firm APC for their expertise in insurance and personal injury related disputes.

Types of Injuries That Require a Personal Injury Lawyer

According to a personal injury lawyer at Presser Law P.A., injuries sustained in an accident can happen at any time, whether you’re walking on the sidewalk and get hit by a car or trip over a loose carpet in your own home and fall down the stairs. No matter how they occur, these kinds of injuries can put you out of work, limit your ability to participate in sports, or even keep you out of school. Fortunately, if you are injured because of someone else’s negligence, you have legal recourse through personal injury law. While there are many kinds of injuries that can make you eligible to take advantage of these laws, here are some of the most common types.

Traumatic Brain Injuries

Traumatic Brain Injury is just one type of injury that can happen during an accident. These injuries are quite serious and can lead to permanent brain damage, coma, or even death. If you have been injured in any way, then it is important that you seek medical attention and speak with a personal injury lawyer who will be able to help get you the compensation that you deserve.

Spinal Cord Injuries

A spinal cord injury often results in paralysis and significant pain. Oftentimes, these injuries can lead to loss of sensation and function below the point where the injury occurred. The best thing that you can do for someone who has suffered from this type of injury is get them immediate medical attention. Medical professionals will use medications and therapies to lessen the chance of long-term damage. Depending on how severe the injury was, it might be necessary for an individual to undergo surgical treatment as well. That means high medical bills and possibly debt to pay them off. Instead of trying to pay for all of this out of your own pocket, contact a personal injury lawyer to get the compensation you deserve to cover an injury such as this.


Burns are one of the most common types of injury that people suffer, and they can be caused by anything from fire to scalding water. While most burns heal on their own, they need to be treated by a doctor within 24 hours in order to prevent any further complications such as infection. If you think you have a burn, but it doesn’t hurt or look like anything is wrong, it’s important to get checked out by a doctor before the injury becomes worse. Then, if your burn was caused by someone else’s negligence such as unsafe work procedures, contact a personal injury lawyer for help!


An amputation is the surgical removal of a body extremity by cutting through the skin, fascia, muscle, and bone. This kind of injury often occurs when a limb is crushed in an accident or has been exposed to extreme cold temperatures. Amputations can be partial (removal of part of the finger) or complete (amputation at the joint). A personal injury lawyer can help you find out if you have grounds for a lawsuit and get compensation for your medical bills and lost wages. After all, if you lose a limb, it will be extremely difficult for you to return to work, and you should be focused on getting better, not your financial situation if you have faced an amputation.

Wrongful Death

A wrongful death occurs when someone dies because of the intentional or negligent act of another person. If you lost a loved one and think that their death was not an accident, you may need to speak with a personal injury lawyer about filing a wrongful death lawsuit. While it is not impossible for you to do this on your own, having a lawyer can help make the process smoother and faster; contact a personal injury lawyer in your area today for help!

Patterson Bray Recognized as a Tier 1 Law Firm by U.S. News & World Report

Patterson Bray PLLC is pleased to announce that U.S. News & World Report has recognized our firm as a Tier 1 Municipal firm in the Thirteenth Edition of the “Best Law Firms” rankings. Patterson Bray PLLC was recognized in the areas of:

  • Commercial Litigation
  • Litigation – Trusts & Estates
  • Personal Injury Litigation – Plaintiffs
  • Municipal Law
  • Personal Injury Litigation – Defendants
  • Trusts & Estates Law

You can read all about our firm rankings here: U.S. News & World Report.

The press release is here: Best Law Firms Press Release.
Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Memphis, TN

When Two Drivers Are To Blame For A Crash

If you have been injured in a car accident, chances are that you are wondering whether any legal or financial opportunities for recourse are available to you. And yet, you may be hesitant to speak with a lawyer because you have a strong sense that you were partially to blame for what happened to you. It is important to understand that even if you were partially to blame for what occurred, you may be in a position to receive significant compensation as a result of the harm you have suffered. Don’t let your sense that you are partially to blame for your accident keep you from exploring your legal options.

If Your Accident Was Work-Related

If you were engaged in work-related activities at the time of your crash, you may be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits. These benefits are generally made available to full-time employees and part-time employees (although not independent contractors) in the event that they suffer work-related harm. Workers’ compensation is a no-fault system. This means that even if you were totally to blame for your car accident, unless you were drunk, high, engaging in road rage, or purposefully trying to get hurt, you should be entitled to these benefits. Working with an attorney can help to ensure that your workers’ compensation award is fairly valued and paid to you promptly.

Pure Comparative Negligence Model vs. Contributory Negligence

As an experienced Palm Bay, FL car accident lawyer – including those who practice at Tuttle Law, P.A. – can explain, different states treat the concept of partial fault differently. States like California and Florida are known as pure comparative negligence states. If your accident occurred in a pure comparative negligence state, you can pursue personal injury damages against others whose negligence, recklessness, or intentionally dangerous conduct directly contributed to the cause of your injuries, even if you were also partially to blame.

By contrast, if you live in a contributory negligence state, you may be barred from seeking financial restitution from others who were partially responsible for your crash if your fault exceeds a certain degree. In a tiny minority of states, you’ll likely be barred from seeking compensation at all, if you were partially to blame. In most contributory negligence states, you’ll remain entitled to pursue personal injury damages if you weren’t more than 50 percent to blame for what happened to you.

Pursuing Personal Injury Damages

Under either model, you will need to prove that the defendant in your lawsuit acted with negligence, was reckless, or engaged in intentionally dangerous conduct when they injured you. Also, underneath either model, the amount of compensation that you will be able to recover will be dependent upon the degree of fault to which you have been assigned. Say, for example, the total value of your harm has been calculated to be $100,000. You have been assigned 30% of the fault for your crash. You will, therefore, be entitled to pursue up to $70,000 in compensation from those responsible for the lion’s share of the harm caused.

Car Accident Lawyer for Distracted Driving

If you were injured in a car accident because of a distracted driver, you may have the right to pursue compensation for your tangible and intangible losses. The sooner you ask a car accident lawyer in Memphis, TN to review your case, the better.

Distracted Driving

Distracted driving includes a broad range of behaviors that take the attention of a driver away from the road and focus it on something else. Most distracted driving accidents are associated with cell phone usage; however, it is not the only activity that may lead to a collision. A car accident lawyer in Memphis, TN has known of cases to involve other distractions including:

  • Applying makeup
  • Changing the radio
  • Talking on a cb radio
  • Eating or drinking
  • Conversing with passengers
  • Fidgeting with objects

Car accident lawyers in Memphis, TN represent people who have been injured or died because of a distracted driver.

The Dangers of Driving While Distracted

Whenever a driver looks away from the road, removes their hands from the wheel, or loses their focus from driving a vehicle, the consequences of doing so can be significant – even deadly. It takes a split second for a person in front of the distracted driver to hit the brakes, or for an object to fly out onto the road. If the driver fails to see or notice this, they may be unable to react; therefore, could cause an accident.

According to the NHTSA, between 60 and 80 percent of car accidents are the result of distracted driver. The administration also claims:

  • Texting while driving can increase the risk of an accident by 23 times.
  • Reaching for an object can increase the risk by 9 times.
  • Looking at an object outside of the car can increase the risk by approximately 3.7 times.

The latest statistics claim 387,000 people were injured in 2011 and 3,331 people lost their life because of a distracted driver. The biggest tragedy is that distracted driving is preventable. As a car accident lawyer for injuries caused by a distracted driver we find these types of collisions to be unfortunate and unacceptable. Rest assured we will do whatever we can to recover maximum damages.

Proving Distracted Driving

To recover monetary damages in claim or lawsuit, you will need to prove the other driver:

  1. Owed you a duty
  2. Breached that duty – in this case, was distracted
  3. Caused you injury

Today, police are more equipped with the knowledge and equipment to look for distractions as a cause of the accident. Sometimes it will also require an investigation of eye witness reports or surveillance footage to prove distracted driving.

What Are Economic Damages and Noneconomic Damages?

When a person is injured in an accident caused by another party or parties, the law says the at-fault party is responsible for any financial costs associated with those injuries. The goal of a car accident or personal injury claim is to “make the victim whole again” and part of that process is reimbursement of financial losses the victim suffered. It can also account for future medical expenses such as additional surgeries.

A seasoned car accident lawyer Memphis, TN families rely on may be able to obtain both economic and noneconomic damages for a victim, depending on the circumstances of the accident. The difference between the two is that economic damages are those items which have an actual dollar value such as medical bills and lost income. Noneconomic damages are awarded to the victim for things like pain he or she has endured from their injuries, or emotional distress. In some situations, your Memphis car accident lawyer may also be able to get you punitive damages.

What Are Economic Damages?

As a car accident lawyer Memphis, TN clients recommend can explain, there are many types of losses for which a victim may be able to collect economic damages. It is important for victims and their families to keep receipts and document any financial expense that is a result of the accident. Reimbursement of economic damages can include any or all of the following:

  • All diagnostic testing, including X-rays and MRIs;
  • Prescription as well as over-the-counter medication;
  • Costs of transportation to and from facilities for medical services;
  • Emergency room visits;
  • Fees for ambulance transportation;
  • Hospital stays;
  • Physical, occupational, and mental health therapy fees;
  • Any medical devices or equipment needed, such as crutches and wheelchairs.
  • Any remodeling required to your home in order to accommodate limitations your injury may be causing, such as wheelchair ramp;
    · Wages not earned due to missed time from work;
    · Reimbursement for work benefits used towards missed time, including personal days, vacation days, and sick days.
    · Loss of future income because of permanent injury that prohibits you from being able to do the job you had prior to the accident.

What Are Noneconomic Damages?

Noneconomic damages are intended to compensate the victim for the negative impact their injuries have made on their life. Since there are no actual financial costs associated with noneconomic damages, these damages are awarded based on the extent of the victim’s injuries. In addition to the documentation and receipts collected for economic damages, victims should also keep track of their medical appointments, when their injuries prevent them from performing an activity or task, and incidents of pain. Your car accident lawyer Memphis, TN locals call can use all of this documentation as evidence in order to obtain noneconomic damages for you.

There are several ways noneconomic damages may be calculated. One of the most common ways is to rate the severity of your injuries on a scale of one to five. Then that number is multiplied by the total amount of economic damages you receive.

Punitive Damages

Although not commonly part of a personal injury claim, there are cases where punitive damages may be awarded. The courts may award punitive damages as a way to “punish” the defendant when their reckless or negligent behavior that the accident is so egregious it warrants punishment. Punitive damages are also meant to send a message to “society” that this type of dangerous behavior is unacceptable. A car accident lawyer Memphis, TN victims recommend can determine if the circumstances of your case may qualify for punitive damages.

One example of when punitive damages may be awarded is in drunk driving accidents. When a person gets behind the wheel of a vehicle when they are under the influence of alcohol – or some other substance – then they are clearly breaking the law. If a driver causes an accident because they were drinking, then juries often determine that driver should be punished for their reckless and illegal actions.

A car accident lawyer Memphis, TN drivers depend on also knows that if the at-fault driver has any criminal charges pending because of the accident – such as a DUI charge – the criminal case is completely separate from any civil case the victim can file. Many victims they think they have to wait for the conclusion of the criminal case before they can bring forth their personal injury claim. However, not only is this not necessary, it can actually hurt their case in the event the statute of limitations runs out before the criminal case has been adjudicated.

A car accident lawyer Memphis, TN trusts knows that under Tennessee law, a victim only has one year to file a personal injury claim against the person responsible for the accident. If that statute expires, victims lose their opportunity to sue. This is also true in wrongful death claims. Families of victims killed in car crashes only have one year to file a lawsuit. Our car accident lawyer in Memphis, TN can determine when the clock began ticking in your case and when the statute expires.

Tips for Road Safety During the Holiday Season

Are you planning on traveling during the holidays? If so, it is important for you to stay safe on the road. Even though you put safety at the top of your priority list when you get behind the wheel of a car, not everyone else will do the same thing. Some circumstances are out of your control. If you are involved in a motor vehicle accident during the holiday season, trust a car accident lawyer in Memphis, TN, such as the team from Patterson Bray, to defend your rights. How can you stay safe on the roads during the holiday season? 

Allow Extra Time While Driving

The roads are always heavier during the holiday season, so you need to allow extra time when you drive from place to place. If you do not allow extra time, you could get frustrated when you get stuck in traffic. This could cause you to take unnecessary risks. Do not let this happen to you. Keep your stress level low by allowing extra time in case you hit traffic. 

Minimize Distractions in the Car

In addition, you should try to minimize distractions in the car. If you are traveling with children, try to find a way to keep them quiet and occupied. You should try to turn off your phone while driving. You may want to avoid eating while driving as well. All of your attention needs to be on the road. Unfortunately, distracted driving is a common cause of motor vehicle accidents, and it could be a reason why you have to call a car accident lawyer in Memphis, TN. 

Listen to Road Alerts

Finally, you should pay attention to road alerts. Accidents are always more common during the holidays, and you need to be aware of any obstructions, traffic jams, or detours that you have to take. You may want to pay attention to local radio stations that can let you know if an accident has occurred. That way, you may be able to avoid a dangerous situation. 

Reach Out to a Car Accident Lawyer

It is important for you to do everything you can to stay safe on the roads during the holiday. If you have been involved in a motor vehicle collision, you need to rely on a car accident lawyer in Memphis, TN, such as a lawyer from Patterson Bray, to protect your rights. You could be entitled to compensation. 

When it comes to car accidents it is easy to get hurt. If you’ve suffered an injury from a car accident it is in your best interest to contact a car accident lawyer in Memphis TN today.