According to a recent report issued by State Farm, over the past 7 years more claims were filed for injury or collision claims during October for 16 and 17-year-olds than for any other month. This data was representative of claims filed with State Farm between 2003 and 2009 involving 16 and 17-year-old drivers indicating a 15% increase in claims. The report also indicated that 57% of all these teens admitted to sending and reading text messages while driving.
National Safety Group Gives Pennsylvania a Dunce Award, Namely the Lowest Grade for Protecting People on Its Roads and Highways
According to a recent study by the Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety, a coalition of consumer health and safety organizations, as well as automobile insurers, Pennsylvania gets the lowest grade for protecting people on its highways. The Executive Director of the group who performed the survey states that Pennsylvania is really not doing much to protect its citizens. Since it is Teen Driver Safety Week and a recent State Farm survey indicated that teen drivers have the highest incidents of car accidents and catastrophic injuries and fatalities, it is surprising that the Pennsylvania legislature still keeps it legal for 16-year old motorists to call for a pizza from behind the wheel. Also, it should be noted that October is the highest month for teenage automobile accidents.
This experienced Philadelphia car accident lawyer is all too familiar with handling the catastrophic results of car accidents. It is time to get smart and jump on the bandwagon.
Philadelphia Personal Injury Lawyer Warns Be Careful Who You Accept As Friends on Your Facebook Account
More and more in contentious litigation, we are receiving requests from defense counsel concerning our clients’ Facebook identification and the news and information posted on their sites. Of course, we strenuously object to the same arguing that it is a violation of privacy. However, it seems to be that we are getting more and more discovery requests for Facebook and social networking information accounts such as MySpace, Twitter, or other sites. Such accounts reveal information regarding an individual which is highly personal. However, access to the user is limited to persons who obtain the user’s permission, which permission is only obtained after the user is approached online by a person seeking access.
As a Facebook user, I regularly receive requests from individuals who I don’t know seeking access to my account and as chance favors the prepared mind, I refuse access to those individuals. Any social networking sites contain information relevant to legal claims that can be used to impeach testimony at trial. Many times, individuals give access to their sites to anyone who asks in a competition to have more friends.
My Mother Got a Brand New Car and Was Driving Down the Highway When a Tire Flew Off a Truck into Her Path of Traffic Causing Her to Lose Control and Get into an Accident – The Truck Kept Going – PA Car and Trucking Accident Lawyer Weighs In
In another case of overloaded trucks and falling debris, my mother called me hysterically crying the other day and told me she was a victim of an accident where a tire flew off a truck into her path of traffic while she was traveling at least 55 mph on a highway. She lost control of her new car and went off the roadway. Fortunately, she was not severely injured. However, as an experienced Pennsylvania truck and car accident lawyer who has handled many cases involving falling debris, I can state that my mother was one of the lucky ones.
Big rig trucks must follow state and federal regulations regarding maintenance and securing of cargo. Regulations include tie down regulations and red flag rules for regular size cargo in order to keep us safe. When debris falls from a truck due to the fact that it is overloaded or not properly secured or the cargo is oversized and was not marked with a red flag, or if the cargo was not strapped in place resulting in shifting and exiting the vehicle, the injured party has a right to recover against the negligent truck driver or any other person who failed to follow the rules.
This even applies to an amateur driving a U-Haul truck or trailer that did not properly secure the cargo and may apply to the personnel at the rental company for failure to inform or advise how to secure the load which resulted in it coming loose on the highway. In the case at hand, the truck responsible kept going without stopping and if there were serious injuries, a potential cause of action may lie for uninsured motorist benefits. Of course each cause is unique and the facts of each incident or offense must be carefully investigated by an experienced car accident lawyer.
If you or a loved one has crashed on a highway into debris that fell from a truck or the debris caused you to lose control of your car and crash into another vehicle then you should seek the assistance of a Pennsylvania car accident lawyer who is experienced in investigating, pursuing, and obtaining compensation as a result of overloading or falling debris from trucks.
For a free no obligation consultation, please contact one of our falling debris or car accident lawyers at 1-800-421-9595 or online at www.reiffandbily.com.
Automobile Manufacturers Always Seem To Point the Finger at Driver Error in Almost All Defective Vehicle Crash Cases When In Fact Corporate Records Reveal It Isn’t So
As an experienced Pennsylvania vehicle defect lawyer who has handled a multitude of automobile defect and auto product liability claims since 1979, a phenomenon that I have regularly witnessed is that even in the most clear cut case of product defect or negligence, the manufacturers always attempt to point the finger at driver error. As is the case in the recent Toyota motor vehicle unintended acceleration litigation, Toyota has repeatedly maintained their position that driver error and not sudden unintended acceleration is the cause of the majority of the accidents involving the Toyota vehicles.
In 15-passenger van rollover cases or SUV rollover cases where it was proven that the manufacturers knew of handling defects and concealed the same from the public, driver error was also claimed to be the culprit by the manufacturers who knew otherwise. Most safety advocates and experienced vehicle defect lawyers know where to look and can point to the defective analysis placing blame on the driver.
If you have been involved in a car accident due to a vehicle’s defect, whether it be stability handling, fuel tank, tire delamination, or seat belt, don’t let the manufacturers point the finger at you. You owe yourself the right and obligation to contact an experienced vehicle defect lawyer with the experience and resources necessary to take on the manufacturers and prove their analysis wrong.
If You Have Been In A Pennsylvania Car Accident, Why Let The Insurance Company Take Advantage Of You And Control The Claims Process?
Recently a woman came into the Philadelphia car accident law firm of Reiff & Bily after being rear-ended in a car accident where she sustained substantial injuries. The insurance company for the car that rear-ended her promptly informed our office that they were not paying the claim due to the fact that the driver operating the vehicle was allegedly a non-authorized driver and therefore not covered under the policy. Of course, further investigation by our office investigator revealed that the insurance company had not properly done their homework, and in fact, the driver was authorized, providing no basis for disclaimer.
With the help of her car accident attorneys at Reiff & Bily, the claimant fought back against the company forcing them to provide coverage that they wrongfully attempted to deny. Additionally, the company added further insult to injury by trying to low ball the value of the client’s valid claim. The insurance company, one of the nation’s largest, was laying the platform of what we consider to be a classic bad faith, double dealing scenario. The insurance company was being dishonest, non-objective, and frankly unfair in the handling of this claim. If my client had not chosen the services of an experienced Philadelphia car accident lawyer who has been fighting insurance companies for more than 30 years with the necessary resources to properly investigate this claim, then she would have been left at the mercy of the insurance company’s lack of integrity where they put profits ahead of integrity. Unfortunately, just as insurance companies like to point the finger at claimants for fraud, they often time are in the big bad business of committing the same offense.
If you have been in a car accident and would like a no obligation, free consultation concerning your rights, please feel free to contact one of our experienced Philadelphia car accident attorneys at 1-800-421-9595 or online at www.reiffandbily.com.
A 7-year-old Georgia boy was killed sitting in the back seat of a Honda Civic only wearing a lap belt. An 8-year-old boy sitting next to him in the back seat of the Honda Civic was not seriously injured at all. He was wearing a lap and shoulder belt. Unfortunately, millions of cars only have a lap belt in the middle of the back seat. Evidence has shown that the lap belt seat belt is not sufficient to fully protect you in a crash.
The Pennsylvania lap belt accident and automotive defect law firm of Reiff & Bily has been investigating lap belt cases for many years and safety experts and automobile manufacturers are well aware of the dangers of the lap belt. A common type of injury from the use of a lap belt only is a fracture of the lower spine which can cause paralysis from the waist down as the person’s upper body is thrown forward. When the lap belt restraint fails, often the victim suffers devastating, permanent, and life-altering injuries including paralysis and other mental and emotional injuries.
As experienced Pennsylvania vehicle defect lawyers, we are well aware that the negligent and defective design of the lap belt restraint system and the negligent failure to warn often results in catastrophic injury and wrongful death to unsuspecting victims. Many doctors and safety experts have warned that children’s lives are unnecessarily put at risk by the use of lap belts in the back seats of cars. In fact, lap belts in the rear seat may actually cause more significant injuries than they prevent according to the National Transportation Safety Board.
If you or a loved one is a victim of catastrophic injuries or wrongful death while using a lap belt, you should contact an experienced lap belt accident lawyer to fully investigate your case and to hold the parties responsible for the damages. The Pennsylvania vehicle defect lawyers of Reiff & Bily offers a free, no obligation consultation. You may contact us online at www.reiffandbily.com or toll free at 1-800-421-9595.
Insurance Companies Are Trying To Block a Pennsylvania House Passed Bill Which They Claim Would Result In Larger Awards Against Them for Car Accidents
Once again the powerful insurance industry and their lobbyists are at it attempting to limit claimants’ recovery from car accidents lawsuits. Under the pending legislation passed by the Pennsylvania House of Representatives, the lawyer for the claimant would be permitted to argue a lump sum or mathematical formula to a jury concerning how much the jury should award the injured party for pain and suffering resulting from a car accident which can include physical and emotional stress as well as humiliation, loss of lifetime employment, scarring, and disfigurement. Of course, the insurance industry argues that this legislation will increase jury verdicts and result in higher insurance rates.
Well, 30 other states of this country of ours permit attorneys to make these arguments. Yet, the insurance industry appears to be frantically lobbying against allowing the same in Pennsylvania. Of course, the monetary recommendation is optional and can be used both by defense or plaintiff’s counsel. The reality of the situation is that this bill would probably raise jury awards a little bit only in the smallest of cases but reduce awards in large cases. Once again this seems to an unconscionable attempt by the insurance industry to try to avoid paying claimants what they are rightfully owed.
As an experienced Philadelphia car accident lawyer for over 30 years, I believe in the jury system and believe that it would be injurious to public welfare to have insurance companies dictate what can and cannot be argued to juries. The most important thing a car accident lawyer can do in Pennsylvania, as well as in this country, is to become an advocate of otherwise powerless citizens fighting corporate interests.
If You Are In a Car, Truck, Motorcycle or Other Motor Vehicle Accident You May Not Want To Trust Your Insurance Company
Last week a man visited my office who was catastrophically injured in a severe motorcycle accident after being run off the road by a truck. He presented me his policy which noted that he had purchased substantial uninsured motorist coverage yet when he reported the claim and our office reported the claim we were told by the adjuster that he never had purchased this coverage. Frankly, the adjuster was outright lying.
When you buy a policy of insurance, the insurance company is supposed to protect you from life’s many mishaps. I always thought that the premiums that you pay every month are supposed to guarantee you help when you need it. Well, as an experienced car accident and truck accident attorney, I can tell you that that is not what is happening in today’s economy with the insurance companies. Recently more and more insurance companies have tried to avoid payments for justified claims and outright lie about coverage issues.
Insurance companies realize that many people are afraid to challenge them or go to lawyers and they can add to their bottom line by fighting claims or misrepresenting the situation rather than giving you what you deserve when a tragedy or accident strikes. Some companies advertise that you are “in good hands,” yet many times when it comes to negotiating claims it seems that they only give you part of the hand, mainly a finger. Such bad faith insurance practices violate the inner core of consumer integrity when people are at their most vulnerable. Do not allow yourself to become a victim of insurance company misrepresentation. Fight for your rights.
If you were involved in a catastrophic accident or a loved one has sustained a wrongful death, please feel free to contact one of our experienced Philadelphia catastrophic injury and personal injury lawyers at 1-800-421-9595 or online at www.reiffandbily.com for a free no obligation consultation.
If You Are Involved In a Pennsylvania Car Accident, Chances Are That the Minimal Insurance Requirements Won’t Fully Cover You Whether You Are a Defendant or Plaintiff
Currently Pennsylvania’s minimum required liability limits for automobile insurance is 15/30 which is a shorthand way noting that expenses caused by an accident are covered up to $15,000 for the injury of one person in an accident and $30,000 if two or more are in the accident and $5,000 for property damage from one accident. The Pennsylvania legislature is currently considering proposed legislation which would raise Pennsylvania minimums to 30/60/10 respectively. Recently, Pennsylvania ranks very low relative to other state minimum insurance requirements and as an experienced Philadelphia car accident attorney since 1979, I am all too familiar with scenarios where the value of the compensatory damage or available money recovery far exceeds the minimal policy limits, placing both claimants and defendants in a precarious financial situation.
The National Association of Insurance Commissioners states that the minimal levels set by states are “generally low” and that levels of coverage can be raised with minimal cost to the policyholder.
As an experienced Pennsylvania car accident attorney who has handled thousands upon thousands of car crash claims, I think it is very important to review your insurance policy and pay a minimal increased charge to have more than minimal coverage together with full tort and uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage. As I am fond of saying, “Chance favors the prepared man.”
If you or a loved one has been involved in a Pennsylvania car accident and would like a free no obligation consultation to explore your rights with a no recovery, no fee guarantee, please contact us at 1-800-421-9595 or online at www.reiffandbily.com.
Another 15-Passenger Dodge 3500 Church Van Involved in Single Vehicle Accident Rolls Over Killing Four and Catastrophically Injuring Other Passengers
For the second time in two weeks, another church van rolled over in a single vehicle accident after a tire blew out on a Georgia highway killing at least four individuals and injuring another 13 passengers. When the tire blew out, the van lost control striking the median, rolling over several times whereupon many passengers were ejected. The van was the notably troublesome 1987 Dodge Ram 3500 15-passenger van and was from Tabernacle Prayer and Deliverance in Columbus, GA.
We were involved in the prosecution of a similar case and call for the government and responsible automakers to take action to prevent senseless accidents such as these from happening in the future. Obviously the manufacturers continue to emphasize profits over safety and the government is sitting back failing to put into effect strict regulations concerning these death machines. The 15-passenger van in this experienced 15-passenger van rollover attorney’s opinion is perhaps the most dangerous vehicle on the roadways today killing innocent children and churchgoers. There is a 15-passenger church van rollover epidemic. In mid-September 2010, another 7 people were killed and 7 catastrophically injured when another church van rolled over.
The experienced 15-passenger van and SUV rollover lawyers of Reiff & Bily have known for a long time that 15-passenger vans continue to be one of the most unsafe vehicles on the road and suffer from a multitude of design defects that the manufacturers knew about. I have intimately shared the pain and loss of all too many parents, children, and churchgoers who are unknowing about these defects and dangers until the accident happens. Government research and research done by automobile manufacturers indicate there is a significant risk of rollover in 15-passenger vans when fully loaded. Many times, the 15-passenger van rollover crash occurs due to defective tires and inexperienced untrained drivers. The victims and the passengers of this unfortunate and tragic accident would be well advised to contact an experienced 15-passenger van rollover accident attorney to fully investigate this accident and recover proper compensation they rightfully deserve because the manufacturer of this van knew of the defects and continued to sell it and did not recall it. The 15-passenger van is extraordinarily easy to rollover when fully loaded because they have a high center of gravity and design defects create unsafe conditions and instability in a tire blowout or accident avoidance maneuver. Those injured or wrongfully killed have a legal right to hold the manufacturer responsible for physical and financial injuries and go a step further and make the manufacturer admit in court what they have known all along that these vehicles are not safe. Additionally, it is time for the government to take action as well and enforce regulations prohibiting the transport of church people or students in these vehicles as many other governments around the world have.