If you’re in an accident with a commercial vehicle, the liability is fairly straightforward. But if you get injured in an accident with a ridesharing vehicle, the rules may not be the same. Wondering about the differences? Then, keep reading to learn more about the liability differences and nuances in these types of accidents.
The Respondeat Superior Principle
Generally, when you’re in an accident caused by a commercial driver, the respondeat superior principle comes into play. ‘Respondeat superior’ is a Latin phrase that translates to “let the superior answer”. In other words, the employer of the driver is liable for the accident. However, this rule usually only applies when the driver is an employee.
Employers may be generally liable for any accidents caused by their drivers, and employers may face additional liability if they fail to train or screen their drivers adequately. Your lawyer can help you find the right angle to establish liability in these accidents.
People who drive for ridesharing companies are independent contractors, not employees, and as a result, the ridesharing company may not be liable for the accident. However, most ridesharing companies carry liability coverage anyway, and they have been held liable in personal injury cases despite the driver being an independent contractor. This is one of the major differences between the liabilities in ridesharing cases compared to cases involving other types of commercial drivers.
Acting in the Scope of Employment
Usually, for a commercial driver’s employer to be liable, the driver has to be acting in the scope of employment. To explain, imagine a driver is making a delivery for their employer. In this situation, the driver is acting in the scope of employment, so their employer is likely to be liable. In contrast, if the driver leaves work, goes to meet friends, and gets in an accident on the way, the driver’s employer may not be liable.
With Uber, Lyft, and other ridesharing services, the driver is never acting in the scope of employment simply because they are not an employee. Again, however, the ridesharing company may be held liable if the driver has passengers or if they are driving to pick up a fare when the accident occurs.
In both situations, you need a quality accident attorney in your corner. Companies will almost always try to deny their liability in these cases. If someone offers you a settlement, that is a sign that they know they are liable, and before accepting the settlement, you should consult with an attorney to make sure that you’re not taking a lowball offer.
Sometimes, with both commercial and ridesharing accidents, the manufacturer of the vehicle or some of its components may be liable for the damages. For instance, if someone is injured in a ridesharing vehicle with defective airbags, the airbag manufacturer may be held liable. Similarly, if the cargo falls out of the back of a commercial vehicle due to a defective pulley system, the manufacturer of the pulley system may be held liable for any injuries and damages that occur.
If you can’t hold the employer, the ridesharing service, or the manufacturer liable for the injuries, the driver may face liability. Commercial drivers may be liable for accidents if they were under the influence of drugs and alcohol, if they forgot to update their logbook, if they were driving while drowsy, or in a variety of other situations. Similarly, ridesharing drivers may be liable for the same reasons. Of course, in both situations, the other driver must have caused the accident. If you caused the accident, you are liable for the injuries.
In that same vein, employers are generally not liable when their drivers engage in intentional tort. This refers to injuries caused by actions such as assault, battery, and kidnapping. In contrast, most accidents aren’t intentional— even if the driver is negligent, they didn’t necessarily mean to cause the injuries.
If you have been in an accident with a commercial vehicle or with a ridesharing driver, you need to work with an attorney who can help you identify the liable party, negotiate with their insurer for the best settlement possible, and take the case to court if necessary. At Mazow | McCullough, PC, we can offer you the support you need when dealing with the aftermath of an accident. To set up a free case evaluation, contact us today.
We can talk with you about your accident, the damages you have suffered, and help you explore liability.
Ridesharing refers to the process of using an app to summon a driver to take you somewhere in their personal vehicle. Led by companies such as Lyft and Uber, ridesharing has become incredibly popular over the last decade. Riders find these services to be convenient, easy-to-use, and often less expensive than taxis. However, anytime you get into a vehicle there is a risk of getting into an accident.
Have you been injured while riding as a passenger in a ridesharing vehicle? Was your vehicle involved in a car accident involving a ridesharing driver? Were you hit by a ridesharing driver while walking or cycling? If so, you may be entitled to compensation. The team at Mazow | McCullough, PC can help.
Liability in Ridesharing Accidents
Normally in a car crash, the at-fault driver is liable for the damages, but if they are working when they cause the accident, their employer is liable. With ridesharing services, the liability isn’t always as clear, which is why you need a knowledgeable personal injury attorney in your corner.
Ridesharing services typically only claim liability when their drivers are actively using the app. If the drivers are logged in but don’t have a passenger in the car, Uber and Lyft both have a modest liability policy in place to cover accidents; however, this coverage simply isn’t enough to cover extensive damages to pedestrians and property. In these cases, you need a ridesharing accident attorney who understands how to successfully make a claim against these companies even when their coverage isn’t adequate.
When a passenger is in the vehicle, both Uber and Lyft have $1 million liability policies in place, and in fact, Massachusetts law requires these companies to carry liability policies in that amount. If liability cannot be established against the ridesharing service, the driver may be held personally liable. Unfortunately, ridesharing drivers often use personal insurance policies, and their insurers reject claims related to commercial accidents. Luckily, in both Massachusetts and New Hampshire, drivers are required to notify their insurers so that doesn’t happen.
After an accident with a ridesharing driver, you may face a range of damages. In accident and injury cases, damages refer to any costs you incur as a result of the accident, any future losses you’re likely to face, and significant changes to your lifestyle, emotional state, or physical abilities. The damages can vary from case to case. To ensure you receive a fair settlement that truly meets your financial needs, you should work with an attorney who has experience estimating damages and obtaining generous settlements for clients — that’s what we do at Mazow | McCullough, PC.
Damages may include the following:
Costs associated with physical therapy, chiropractic care, or alternative care providers
Medical devices and equipment
Home health care costs
Hiring help for essential tasks around the home
Reduced future earning capacity
Pain and suffering
Loss of consortium
When you set up a no obligation case evaluation, your attorney can help you assess the damages related to your case.
Compensation in Ridesharing Accidents
If you suffer damages due to a ridesharing driver’s negligence or due to the ridesharing company’s negligence, you may be entitled to compensation. In personal injury cases, compensation is based on your damages. However, there are legal caps on some claims, and if you are determined to be personally liable for part of the accident, comparative liability can reduce your compensation.
Bringing Claims Against Ridesharing Drivers and Services
As indicated above, liability is not always clear in cases against ridesharing services and drivers. In most cases, it’s usually more advantageous to bring the claim against the service rather than the driver, simply because ridesharing services have larger insurance policies and more assets than most individual drivers.
However, to protect their bottom lines, these companies and their insurers will try to fight against claims. At the same time, your attorney will try to unearth reasons why they are liable. For instance, New Hampshire state law requires ridesharing drivers to have no convictions for sexual offenses, property damage, driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, or using motor vehicles to commit felonies in the last seven years. If you are injured in an accident with a driver that did not meet these criteria, the ridesharing service may be liable.
In some cases, your lawyer may identify other liable parties. If faulty airbags or tires, for example, caused the injuries to be worse than they should have been, your attorney may advise you to bring a claim against the manufacturer of those components.
Insurance Claims for Ridesharing Accidents
As a rule of thumb, ridesharing companies have large liability plans in place, applying to accidents that occur when the ridesharing driver has a passenger in the vehicle. These companies tend to have slightly reduced coverage for accidents that occur when the driver is logged into the app but doesn’t have a passenger. The driver’s insurance applies in other cases. Making ridesharing insurance claims can be complicated, and you may want to consult with a legal professional so they can help you negotiate a fair settlement with the insurance company.
If you’re thinking about making a legal claim against a ridesharing company, you should understand the lawsuit process. Often, you can keep the issue out of court and come to a satisfactory resolution relatively quickly by working with an arbitrator or a mediator. However, in other cases, you need to be ready to go to court to ensure that you are fairly compensated for all the current and future damages you incurred as a result of the ridesharing accident.
After an accident, you have a limited amount of time to bring a claim against the at-fault driver. In most cases, the statute of limitations for ridesharing accidents is three years, but the time limit can vary based on the type of accident and the damages involved. To be on the safe side, you should consult with a ridesharing attorney as soon as possible after your accident.
Ridesharing puts more vehicles on the road, and as a result, when ridesharing companies come into an area, traffic density increases — which often leads to more accidents. In some cases, these accidents directly involve Lyft, Uber, or other ridesharing companies. Tragically, many fatalities have occurred to ridesharing passengers and occupants of other vehicles.
Unfortunately, ridesharing drivers have hit and injured or killed pedestrians in multiple parts of the country. Ridesharing companies often try to deny liability for these accidents, unless the driver has a passenger in the vehicle. Arguably, these companies should face responsibility for accidents that happen when their drivers are distracted by the app or rushing to pick up a passenger.
Ridesharing companies screen their drivers and try not to hire drivers with histories of drunk driving, accidents, or traffic tickets, but research shows that the screening process has a lot of room for error. If a ridesharing driver is intoxicated, they put their passengers and other drivers on the road at risk of grievous injuries. Ridesharing passengers and drivers also need to be aware of the risks associated with other intoxicated drivers.
Like all accidents, ridesharing accidents are caused by a range of different reasons. Speeding and reckless driving play a large role, but often, drivers are simply distracted and not paying adequate attention to the road. The combination of engaging with the ridesharing app, talking with passengers, and driving unfamiliar routes creates a perfect storm where ridesharing drivers may be more prone to getting in accidents than other drivers. Additionally, these drivers usually aren’t as experienced as other professional drivers, potentially heightening the risk of an accident
Ridesharing accidents can cause extensive injuries and even death. Injuries include impact and penetrating injuries, but accidents can also lead to or exacerbate mental health issues, such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). All these injuries can be debilitating and expensive, causing significant upheaval to your life. If you are severely injured after a ridesharing accident, you should contact an attorney to help you negotiate with the ridesharing company’s insurance provider, and to bring a lawsuit against the driver or the ridesharing company if needed.
To protect yourself, you need to understand a few ridesharing safety essentials. Tragically, people have been injured or have even died after getting into the wrong car or not protecting themselves in other ways. Before using a ridesharing service such as Lyft or Uber, you should review the list of safety tips in this resource.
How to Verify Your Uber Driver Before Getting into the Car
Uber and Lyft have safety mechanisms in place so that riders can verify their drivers before they get into the vehicle. To ensure you’re getting into the right car, you should verify the driver’s name, check the license plate number with the information in the app, and make sure the driver knows your name. To learn more about how to verify your driver, check out the following resource link.
Steps to Take After a Ridesharing Accident
Being in an accident with a ridesharing driver can be scary. Whether you’re the driver of the ridesharing vehicle, the driver of another vehicle, or a ridesharing passenger, there is a certain protocol you should follow after an accident. The right steps help to protect your health while also safeguarding your ability to make an insurance claim or bring forward a lawsuit if necessary.
What to Do When Your Lyft Driver Wants to Handle Your Accident Privately
You should never handle an accident privately. Legally, you should report all accidents to the authorities. Without an accident report, making an insurance claim or holding the other driver liable for your injuries or damages can become impossible. Check out the following resource page to learn what you should do if your ridesharing driver wants to handle an accident privately.
Ridesharing companies use websites or apps to facilitate travel arrangements where drivers use their own vehicles to transport passengers. The drivers work as independent contractors and are not directly employed by the ridesharing companies. Passengers can opt to rideshare with other people taking similar routes, or they can order a vehicle just for themselves and their party.
Uber has a presence in over 60 countries and over 700 cities around the world. Estimated to bring in more than $11 billion in revenue annually, this company offers ridesharing services, ride service hailing, food delivery through Uber Eats, and bicycle-sharing services through JumpBikes. Established in 2009, Uber is based in San Francisco, and the company is known for disrupting the transportation industry.
Founded in 2012, three years after Uber, Lyft is the second largest ride sharing service in the world, and as of 2018, it brings in about $2 billion in revenue per year. Lyft operates in over 650 cities throughout the United States and Canada.
At Mazow | McCullough, PC, we represent clients who have been in ridesharing accidents in Massachusetts and New Hampshire. If you have been in an accident, contact us today. We can start with a free case evaluation and help you decide which steps to take next. Dealing with the aftermath of an accident can be scary, expensive, and time consuming. Let us help you get through this situation as easily and painlessly as possible.
According to the US Census Bureau, there are approximately 47.8 million people over the age of 65 living in the United States. This group represents close to 15% of the population, and as more and more baby boomers reach retirement age, this number is only going to grow. Unfortunately, however, society is not caring for and protecting this vulnerable part of the population—elder abuse statistics are shocking and deeply saddening.
How Many People Are Affected by Elder Abuse?
Based on the most recent elder abuse statistics from the National Council on Aging, approximately one in ten seniors have experienced some form of elder abuse. Most officials believe that elder abuse statistics only tell part of the story. The vast majority of abuse never gets reported.
Nursing homes should be caring facilities that help aging people through their final years, but tragically, a significant portion of nursing homes are linked to some type of nursing home abuse. A report presented to Congress in 2001 revealed that between 1999 and 2001, 5,283 nursing homes in the United States were cited for harm or neglect. That’s one-third of the country’s nursing homes. In fact, 1,600 of those nursing homes were cited for elder abuse that was linked to serious injury or death.
How Many Nursing Home Residents Face Elder Abuse?
Different studies and surveys put forward a variety of different elder abuse statistics, but none of them paint a positive picture of the situation. In a survey from the The Atlanta Long Term Care (LTC) Ombudsman Program, 44% of nursing home residents reported abuse, and 48% reported that they had been treated roughly.
States are supposed to monitor the condition of nursing homes, but according to the US Government Accountability Office, 70% of federal comparative surveys find mistakes and deficiencies in state surveys. In 45 states, 40% or more state surveys overlooked issues, and these surveys aren’t just overlooking the small issues. Approximately 15% of federal comparative surveys found that state surveys failed to report issues of serious harm to nursing home residents.
Who Is Most Likely to Suffer from Elder Abuse?
Elder abuse affects a range of people, but there are certain risk factors that can make someone more susceptible to abuse. Female nursing home residents are more likely to be affected by nursing home abuse than their male counterparts. Abuse is also much higher among disabled patients, especially those with dementia. Additionally, elders in poverty, with low levels of social support, and previous histories of abuse are at a higher risk of facing abuse.
What Are the Results of Elder Abuse?
In addition to physical responses such as bruises, broken bones, and constant pain, seniors face a lot of other reactions to elder abuse. Research published in the Journal of the American Medical Association indicates a direct link between nursing home abuse and increased mortality risk. On top of that, many elders suffer from emotional distress and depression, and based on the True Link Report on Elder Financial Abuse, financial abuse costs elders $36.48 billion per year.
Elder abuse statistics are shocking, but the fact that this situation is common does not make it okay. If you or a loved one has been affected by nursing home abuse, we can help. Contact Mazow | McCullough, PC today at (855) 693-9084.
When you are prescribed medication for a condition, there is a reasonable expectation that it will help you heal. In many cases, it does. However, there are some unfortunate cases where medications may lead to worse health conditions or exacerbate a previous one.
Drug companies are quick to consider these developments rare and insist on the safety of their products. However, there are instances where drugs are not researched thoroughly and get pushed through the FDA approval system. When this occurs, you may have a product liability claim for drug-induced injuries against these manufacturers.
Types of Injuries
A drug-induced injury typically arises from side effects or properties of the drug. While some side effects may be mild and considered minor when compared to therapeutic value, others can be life threatening.
For example, antibiotics, central nervous system agents, dietary supplements, and immune system support have been linked to drug-induced liver injuries. When these treatments are combined with acetaminophen, patients may face complete liver failure.
Patients may also face injuries from a drug interaction. The American Heart Association discovered over one hundred medications and supplements that are risky for people with heart failure or at risk of heart failure. Patients are not always informed of this possibility and often face unknown risk.
In a similar category as drug interaction is also prescription drug overdose. Due to poor instructions or mislabeling, patients may also sustain injuries from taking too much of a medication.
While facing injuries and obtaining proper treatment can be difficult enough, yet another challenge lies in forming the legal case against a drug company.
Drug-induced injuries fall under several legal theories. One is product liability. Poor quality medication and misleading marketing are common offenses. Since manufacturers are required to provide safe products, it is reasonable for consumers to assume that safety when they are prescribed medication.
Medical malpractice is another possibility. Doctors and pharmacies may not adequately inform patients of possible interactions and risks, keeping patients from making informed decisions about their treatment.
Multiple possibilities for legal liability highlight a primary challenge with these claims: finding the responsible party. The list of potential defendants for drug-induced injuries is long and not limited to drug manufacturers. Testing laboratories, pharmaceutical sales workers, doctors, clinics, and even the pharmacy could responsible.
Bringing Forward a Claim
If you bring a drug-induced injury claim, the drug company may try to blame your injuries on someone else, including you. Manufacturers are prepared for these claims because, frankly, they expect them. Their attorneys are accustomed to challenging plaintiffs and making attempts to shift liability to other parties. Since money is often no object with drug companies, they are frequently willing to go to trial.
Drug companies also have experts available to attest to the safety of the drug and claim your experience is a rare and unexpected one. Just as they have the ability to keep their legal teams well-paid, the same is true for their staff doctors, outside consultants, and paid researchers. These are often resources not available to most plaintiffs.
Drug-induced injury cases are difficult but fortunately, not impossible to win. Research into medications has improved and more patients are willing to make their experiences known. This allows for better flow of information and if you have a drug-induced injury claim, there may be another claim similar to yours or even a class-action lawsuit.
Mazow | McCullough, PC is dedicated to helping patients receive compensation for their drug-induced injuries. Contact our office today to schedule a free consultation at (855) 693-9084.
Medical malpractice isn’t something to be taken lightly – many people are critically injured or lose their lives to this completely preventable problem every day. Whether by surgical error, misdiagnosis, medication or anesthesia errors, people across the nation suffer greatly due to the mistakes or negligence of medical professionals in hospitals and in private clinic settings.
Here’s what you should know about medical malpractice and how you can get the help you need if you or someone in your family were the victim of a doctor, nurse, or hospital’s negligence.
Diagnostic errors cause between 80,000 to 100,000 deaths in the United States every year.
45% of malpractice claims are inpatient and 38% are outpatient.
Hospitals report approximately 195,000 deaths each year due to mistakes that could have been prevented.
Malpractice claims can be broken down by type: 33% diagnosis errors, 23% surgical errors, 18% treatment problems, 10% obstetrics, and 10% anesthesia or medication errors.
1 out of every 3 patients in a hospital will be the victim of an error made by a medical professional. Some errors are never brought to the patient’s attention or do not cause problems significant enough for the patient to notice.
Top misdiagnosed conditions by primary care physicians include heart attack, cancer, and meningitis.
Some medical malpractice cases can result from patients not being provided with adequate information about the risks versus benefits of a procedure, treatment, or medication. If there’s a poor outcome and the patient did not give informed consent, a legal claim may exist.
Critical injuries and deaths resulting from medical malpractice are often preventable and result from the negligence or carelessness of medical professionals in doctor’s offices and hospitals.
There are several “never events” that are considered completely preventable by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services including but not limited to: objects left in the body during surgery and infections at the surgical site, blood incompatibility, bed sores, facility acquired injuries, air embolisms, and vascular or urinary catheter associated infections. In these cases, the chances of finding the hospital strictly liable is high.
Malpractice Lawsuit Facts
The Massachusetts General Hospital Department of Medicine conducted a 2009 study that suggested most physicians would be the subject of a malpractice lawsuit at some point in their career.
Between 1996 and 2010, over $38 billion was paid out to victims through medical malpractice lawsuits.
96% of all medical malpractice cases are settled without going to court.
16% of malpractice cases are against primary care physicians. Primary care physicians commonly misdiagnose patients or make a medication error.
Doctors rarely face disciplinary action when they commit even grave negligence that results in the critical, permanent injury or death of a patient.
The burden of proof in a malpractice lawsuit rests on the shoulders of the patient. He or she must prove that the medical professional providing care failed to meet the same standard of care another professional would have in the same situation.
Most medical malpractice cases that are settled without the help of an attorney settle for much less than they would have settled for with an attorney advocating for the patient. Hospitals and insurance companies are quick to twist situations around to make malpractice seem like an unpreventable accident or the fault of the patient.
Were You or a Loved One the Victim of Medical Malpractice?
If you or a family member suffered injury due to the carelessness or negligence of a medical professional, don’t hesitate to secure legal representation. This is particularly true if you’ve lost a loved one due to medical malpractice wrongful death.
It’s important to not only receive compensation for the damages you and your family have incurred due to a medical professional’s negligence, but also to hold that medical professional responsible for his or her actions and to ensure the same doesn’t happen again to someone else. Contact Mazow | McCullough, PC to learn more about your legal options by calling (855) 693-9084.
Truck accidents can be devastating on many different levels, especially physically and financially. Because truck accidents tend to result in critical injuries and fatalities at a higher rate than other types of auto accidents, the effects of a truck collision can be much more challenging.
While it’s clear that victims of truck accidents are going to deal with medical bills, physical injuries, and emotional suffering, here are some lesser known obstacles that families often face after a truck crash.
Insurance Companies and Aggressive Legal Teams
One of the most challenging issues that people must deal with after a truck accident is insurance companies and aggressive legal teams. This can be quite different than dealing with an insurance company or the private lawyer of a motor vehicle driver after an accident.
Trucking companies often have lawyers on standby. In fact, many people who were involved in an accident report stated that they saw lawyers on the scene even before all the debris was cleared away. Because trucking companies often deal with accidents caused by their drivers, they have attorneys ready to dispatch at a moment’s notice to help ensure that any questionable evidence is retrieved.
Insurance companies are also difficult for truck accident victims to deal with because insurance adjusters will often attempt to intimidate or bully victims. Adjusters may make victims feel like it is impossible to go up against such a large company for a fair settlement. They often pressure victims to accept the lowest settlement possible in order to put the case to bed and save money – even if the settlement offered is nowhere near what the victim deserves.
Falsification of Records and Poorly Kept Records
Trucking companies make money by transporting goods from one place to another as quickly as possible. Drivers are usually paid by the mile, meaning that the more miles they log in the shortest period of time, the more they earn. This leads drivers to push themselves past what is legal (e.g., driving over the limit of legal consecutive hours).
Trucking companies know this and may even encourage drivers to falsify the records on their logs. This is an attempt to hide the fact that many drivers break the law to earn more money for themselves and, ultimately, the company.
If a truck malfunction caused the accident, it may be difficult to determine who is at fault if records were poorly kept. Trucking companies should keep records of any and all service and maintenance performed on a truck, what was done, and who performed the service. However, victims may find that these records are missing or poorly kept, therefore making it impossible to determine when the truck was last serviced. Ultimately, this means that the truck could be too dangerous to safely operate.
After a truck accident, it’s not uncommon for evidence to “disappear.” This includes written logs kept by the driver of the truck or even the recorded information on the truck’s black box. Currently, there are no laws against trucking companies deleting their own records or destroying them, unless there’s a legal action filed that prevents them from doing so. For this reason, it is absolutely critical to retain an attorney soon after a truck accident. An attorney can file a motion making it against the law for the trucking company to destroy potentially pertinent evidence.
When to Contact a Truck Accident Attorney
Even though it may be difficult to reach out to an attorney after a truck accident, especially if you or a loved one were critically injured or a loved one was killed, it is in your best interests to contact one as soon as you are able. Although insurance companies may attempt to make it look like they are on your side, rest assured that they are not. Their job is to help the trucking company pay out as little in damages as possible.
At Mazow | McCullough, PC, we can help you go up against large trucking companies with zeal after an accident. Our aggressive approach can help you preserve evidence and let trucking companies know that you won’t be pushed around. Call us today for a consultation to discuss your claim in detail at (855) 693-9084.
Drones, which originated as technology that allowed for safe U.S. surveillance in high conflict areas like Afghanistan, have also become a popular new toy for people of all ages. Drones can be both useful and fun to fly, but unfortunately, they also have the ability to cause serious injury. Here’s what you need to know about drones and where to get help if you or a loved one were the victim of drone injuries.
Drone Facts & Statistics
Whether or not you’re familiar with drones, you may not be aware of these interesting drone facts:
Drones available to purchase from department stores or malls are called UAV’s, or “unmanned aerial vehicles”
A drone can cost between $50 to $1,500 depending on the level of technology used
All national parks have banned drones from flying over their property lines
Drones can fly as high as 400+ feet
Drones can fly at speeds over 140 mph
Uses for Drones
Drones can be used for a wide variety of personal and commercial activities, including but not limited to:
Flying for fun, much like one might fly a kite or a remote-controlled airplane
Real estate photography, to capture aerial photos of large estates
Aircraft inspections, to ensure that all aspects of an aircraft are in working order before flights
The study of volcanoes and lava lakes in places where researchers were previously unable to reach due to heat and danger
Construction surveillance to ensure a construction project is proceeding according to plan
Mining surveillance to identify problems that could be dangerous for miners or to expose valuable minerals
Search and rescue missions, to enable multiple people to search far and wide for missing children and adults
Wedding photography and videography, allowing couples to capture photos and videos from angles that a traditional photographer may not be able to get
Media coverage for sporting events, marathons and/or outdoor events
How Drones Can Injure
Although drones have many uses, simply put, they’re large, heavy flying machines that, like any other machine, have the ability to malfunction or be operated improperly. A drone that isn’t operated properly or malfunctions in midair can come hurtling down and if it hits one or more people, it could cause serious injury. Whirling blades can cause cuts and lacerations, while an impact can cause head injury, broken bones, and in rare cases, even death.
Imagine being a “crash landing pad” for a heavy piece of flying machinery coming at you at 140+ mph from over 400 feet. Naturally, individuals in this scenario have the potential to suffer severe injuries, many of which can cause paralysis and even disfiguration. In fact, Mazow | McCullough, PC has represented and continues to represent individuals who have suffered severe, permanent injuries due to the negligence of drone owners and operators.
Types of Drone Injuries
Damages Incurred by a Drone Injury
There are many damages that can be associated with a drone injury. Much like any other serious injury that requires hospitalization and extensive care, a drone injury can result in the following types of damages:
Medical expenses related to the injury, both past and future, to include hospital bills, surgical costs, physical therapy, medications, and any other medical care needed by the victim as a result of the injury
Lost wages incurred as a result of being out of work due to injuries sustained
Emotional trauma, pain, and suffering that arises from being suddenly struck out of nowhere by a malfunctioning drone
Permanent scarring and disfigurement due to the propeller blades and/or weight of the drone
Funeral expenses if the drone incident resulted in a death
Common Cases Involving Drone Injuries
Who Can Be Held Liable for a Drone Injury?
Like with any injury, it’s important to determine who the at-fault party is before a lawsuit can be brought forward to hold that person or entity legally liable for the damages caused by the drone. Examples of who may be liable in a drone injury case include but are not limited to:
The operator of the drone, especially if he or she was flying a drone while under the influence of alcohol or drugs or neglected to keep the drone in good operating condition
The designer or manufacturer of the drone, if the drone was found to be faulty or defective
The seller of the drone, if the drone did not include proper use and safety warnings on the outside of the box or inside with the instructions for use
The owner of the drone, if they do not properly instruct the user on how to safely operate the drone and/or if the owner allows the drone to be operated by someone who is not fit to do so
The property owner of where the incident occurs, if the property owner allowed the drone to be used or operated on the property when it was not safe to do so
How Do I Receive Compensation For My Injury?
Protect Yourself with a No-Fly Zone
Fortunately, there are now ways to protect yourself against drones both invading your privacy and increasing your risk for injury. NoFlyZone.org is a website that allows you to enter in your address and personal information and creates a “no fly zone” around your property that drone operators will see when they check for areas that are safe and acceptable to fly their drone in.
While there are no current requirements to check the no-fly zone database by drone operators, getting your property on the no-fly zone list is a good first step to protecting your privacy and yourself and your loved ones from injury.
How to Get Help After a Drone Injury
If you or a loved one were hurt by a drone, whether the injuries were minor or severe, you may be entitled to compensation to cover damages like medical expenses, lost wages, and more.
At Mazow | McCullough, P.C., we have the skills and resources to help you determine who may be at fault for your injuries and bring a claim forward for financial restitution. We have experience with drones, drone technology, and drone lawsuits and can zealously represent you in a drone injury case. Contact us today for a consultation by e-mail or call us toll free at (855) 693-9084 or locally at (978) 744-8000.
Security measures and security personnel are put in place for a reason – to protect. When such security measures fail to perform their duty, accidents, assaults, and other unfortunate events can occur that may result in personal injury or wrongful death. In such circumstances, the person or persons, company, or organization responsible should be held accountable for the damages caused by the negligent security.
Unfortunately, certain retailers, employers, and landlords choose not to install security measures until after an assault or rape. Mazow|McCullough, P.C. represents victims of criminal assaults in cases where a lack of personal security constitutes negligence security on the part of property owners and retailers.
Most insurers and property owners take the view that “crime just happens” – blaming assaults on circumstances they claim they cannot control. In cases involving negligent security, however, the issue is foreseeability and a duty of care to protect customers and patrons from a potential criminal attack.
For example, has an assault or other crime happened in the area? Are customers leaving a store with valuable merchandise that could entice criminals? Has the property owner installed certain security measures in anticipation of certain security risks?
In each instance, what is at issue is not whether a property owner could have anticipated a particular crime but whether a property owner could have anticipated any crime at all. Once our negligent security attorneys establish grounds for a property owner anticipating security risks, liability can be assigned for the purposes of recovering financial losses.