The most common would be car accidents or auto accidents. The next would be trucking accidents and then slip, trip and falls. Then motorcycle, bike and pedestrian accidents would be the next level of accident that we see in frequency.
What Areas of Personal Injury Do You Cover?
I handle boating accident cases, general negligence, discharge of firearms, fire cases, negligent security which is a type of premises liability case, nursing-home abuse and medical malpractice.
What Kind of Situation is Discharge of Firearms?
A lot of times you'll have somebody who picks up a firearm and doesn't really intend to hurt somebody and the firearm will discharge and cause injury to somebody else.
Do You Work with Cases that Involve Children?
I do. Most of my child-related cases have been not traditional auto cases and things like that. There have been injuries on playgrounds, falling downstairs in somebody's home, some trampoline cases, injuries with a swimming pool and things along those lines.
When an Accident Involves a School Pool, Is that a Premises Liability Situation There?
That is a premises liability case. The negligence standard is always the same. Is there a duty? Was there a breach of their duty? If there was a breach of duty or negligence, did it cause injury? So if someone leaves a gate open and a kid goes into a pool, such as a neighbor's kid goes into a pool because somebody left the gate open, even though there is a potential trespass issue, the home owner could potentially be negligent because the gate was not locked. In the case of a school, there would be additional notice requirements under the law because Schools are covered under Sovereign Immunity.
Would a Trampoline Accident Be a Premises Liability or a Product Liability?
It could be both!
Most of the time, a trampoline accident is a premises liability claim if the home owner did not set it up properly or did not maintain the trampoline properly, or there are young kids in the neighborhood who have gone over to the home and played on the trampoline. If the homeowner doesn't fence off the backyard, and neighborhood kids believe they can go on the trampoline and play, the homeowner could be responsible for the injury even though they weren't at home.
A trampoline injury can also be a product liability case if there is a problem with the spring or a problem with the tarp or a problem with the supports or things along those lines, but for product liability cases you have to have severe injury because they are very expensive to pursue.
Do You Handle Product Liability Cases?
I have worked with product liability cases at prior firms but I do not currently handle product cases, simply because of the expense.
Have You Ever Worked with Animal Bites Cases?
Yes! Dog bite cases depend upon where you're located. I practice in Florida also. In Florida, there is a strict liability statute in which all you need in order to proceed with an animal bite case is to show that you are lawfully on the person's property, that the person owned the dog. You don't have to show anything else. In Indiana, you have to show that the dog had prior issues. Some people call it “the one free bite rule.”
You have to show that the owner knew or should have known that their dog was dangerous and in some places you are able to show that and use that fact. For instance, if it's a Pit-bull or a Rottweiler or some other breeds that are known to be pretty aggressive, you could say the owner would know or should have known that the dog was dangerous. In Indiana it doesn't work that way, so you actually have to prove that the dog bit somebody before.
There are other ways to show negligence. For instance, if the dog wasn't really restrained, if the owner was there and didn't stop the dog, etc. In a straight dog bite case, you have to show the one free bite rule. That's the easiest way to put it.
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