Advocating for the average person in the personal injury field

Advocating for the average person in the personal injury field

[Mark Perenich & the Perenich Caufield Avril Noyes team]

Apart from being a law firm that has fought for and represented victims in Florida, since past many decades, we are also a firm that believes in protecting the rights of the citizens of Florida wherever they are being neglected or harmed. There are various issues for which reforms are needed and we, not only as Lawyers but also as common citizens support them.

Bodily Injury Liability Protectioncar accident

It’s hard to believe but Florida is among the only two states in the country with no ‘Bodily Injury Liability Protection’. Currently financial responsibility that needs to be demonstrated by vehicle owners of private passenger cars is fulfilled by only two ‘Protections’, namely – Property damage liability protection & Personal Injury Protection. It is not required under law for a private passenger car owner to have Bodily injury liability protection i.e. if someone gets seriously injured due to their vehicle, the driver of the vehicle does not need to have Insurance for paying the compensation and other costs to the seriously injured victim.

We support the Financial Responsibility Legislation, which will make the present self-insurance requirements more secure and will require a private passenger car owner to have a minimum Bodily injury liability protection of $25,000 per person or $50,000 per incident. This legislation will help in reducing the insurance premiums paid by financially responsible car owners and will go on in ensuring that the taxpayers of Florida and the Trauma centers operating in the state of Florida save millions over the years.

Bad Faith Protection

When policyholders pay their premiums to insurance companies for liability policies, they are doing so to ensure that their business does not face a crisis or goes bankrupt if their business becomes liable to someone. Sometimes, the insurance companies fail to inform the policyholder regarding settlement in a case or simply refuse to accept reasonable settlements; basically they act in bad faith even though the laws in Florida require them to act in good faith to their policy holders.

We are against the bad faith that the Insurance companies demonstrate and also against the Insurance companies who do so. If the Insurance companies are allowed to evade their responsibility, it will possess a significant risk to businesses of Florida as businesses can face excess judgments because the Insurance companies didn’t do their Job properly or acted in bad faith.

Protection of Best Interest of Children Having Birth Related Neurological Injury

In 1988 Florida Legislature created NICA or (The Florida Birth-Related) Neurological Injury Compensation Association. It was created to provide benefits to children who had sustained a spinal cord or brain injury caused by mechanical injury or oxygen deprivation during labor, delivery, or in the immediate post-delivery period. The program was also created to avert an Insurance crisis being faced by Doctors and healthcare establishments practicing Obstetrics and as a mean to provide compensation on ‘no-fault’ basis to the class of children who suffered a significant Neurological Injury due to the reasons mentioned above and left the children “permanently and substantially mentally and physically impaired.”

The Florida Legislature had enacted Sections 766.301-766.316, Florida Statutes, to create NICA as a benefit program but today most of the executive staff and ‘board members’ in NICA are representatives from Healthcare and Insurance industries and not people from the affected families.

Needless to say, a conflict of interest exists between people who sit on NICA’s board and the people whose children suffer from birth related Neurological Injury, which can be seen from the numerous litigations in the past among the two parties who have now become ‘adversaries’.

We support the legislation that incorporates changes to the statues that govern NICA and make it a body that goes on to deliver on the promises it intended to and for which it was originally created.

Against the proposed curbs and limitations on Medical Payments

Doctor

A victim who has been injured has all the rights to seek the best medical care possible but a bill was filed in 2013 according to which in a trial a jury will assess and grant past and future medical expense in cases of wrongful death and personal injury.

We are against the bill as the provisions in it are already fulfilled, Sections 501.1(a) and (b), Florida Standard Jury Instructions, state “you should award claimant an amount of money that the greater weight of the evidence shows will fairly and adequately compensate him/her for his/her loss, injury or damage, including any damage claimant is reasonably certain to have/experience in the future…” and section 501.2(b) states that a jury is to award, “the reasonable value or expense of hospitalization and medical and nursing care and treatment necessarily or reasonably obtained by claimant in the past or to be so obtained in the future.”

The only thing this bill will do is increase the cost of litigations especially for the plaintiffs who will have to bear additional expenses to get properly compensated for the medical expenses they bore and/or will bear in future.

 Mark Perenich is a personal injury lawyer in Clearwater please call him if you would like to know more about your case 727-386-9677

Personal Injury Lawsuits: Five Mistakes to Avoid to Win Your Case

Clearwater Personal Injury lawyer Mark Perenich

Today we have a guest post. Entitled:Injury

Personal Injury Lawsuits:  Five Mistakes to Avoid to Win Your Case

 If you are like most people, you never planned to be in an accident.  While it was always a remote possibility (accidents do happen) most people assume that if they are in an accident the loss will be minimal.  Perhaps some damage to the vehicle which will be covered by a liability insurance policy.   We don’t consider that we could be the ones that need repair after an accident (not just our cars) and that the injury we sustain can take months or even years to recover from.

When it comes to having a case or requesting fair compensation by law, automobile accidents are just one type of personal injury claim that can be made.  There are a variety of circumstances where individuals can suffer an accident or loss that makes a second party liable for damages depending on the circumstances.

Understand that any time you experience an event which causes you harm cognitively or physically, that there is a question of liability and a right to request compensation for loss.  Filing a personal injury suit is a means of insuring that the care, therapies or other treatments needed to recover from your loss will be there to allow you to heal and get back to your normal activities of life.

Some other common types of personal injury cases are:

  • Insurance Disputes
  • Long Term Disability
  • Boating Accidents
  • Trucking/Logistic Accidents
  • Motorcycle Accidents
  • Construction or Workplace Accidents
  • Child or Sexual Abuse
  • Wrongful Death
  • Slip and Fall Injuries
  • Product Liability and Manufacturer Negligence

Regardless of the type of personal injury case you have, there are a number of ways you can actually damage your chances of successfully filing suit and winning a settlement. One of the unfortunate and consistent issues with personal injury claims is that element of surprise.   Since we never expect to get into an injury or sustain a personal loss, we do not adequately prepare ourselves for the event of one.  That is when costly omissions and mistakes which can jeopardize your case will occur.

We have put together five common mistakes made by personal injury claimants who should be avoided if you intend to win your case and the fair compensation that is owed to you.

Failure to Document the Incident

When unable to resolve personal injury claims by private settlement, most suits end up going to court for decision.   Since serious injuries can result in significant monetary settlements, it is a high-stakes situation with the insurer (or the individual who is liable) fighting to avoid a costly payment.

The defendants can and will be looking for any loophole to argue the liability of the personal injury suit and try to discharge the claim and/or lower the amount of legal liability they have in the eyes of the court.  And the best way to do that is to isolate weaknesses in the personal injury claim.

Train yourself to record the pertinent information and key points that will support your personal injury claim.   These include:

  1. Date and time of accident.
  2. Weather conditions, ice, water or other environmental factors present at the scene.
  3. The speed you were driving (if operating a vehicle).
  4. Anything you may have overheard from other participants or people on the scene.
  5. Take pictures for documentation.  As many as possible.
  6. Lawyers for the defendant (or Insurer) will evaluate any weakness in the injury case as a means of reducing the amount of settlement they may be forced to pay.  That’s why documenting everything and doing it in a manner that is legally defensible is so critically important.

Delay in Reporting the Loss

For all personal injury claims there is a statute of limitations.  Some of these limitations are outlined in private contracts where insurance coverage is involved, and can be found in the waiver that is signed by tour operators and transportation providers, for instance.   In some cases they allow you a shorter amount of time with which to report any personal injury that occurs as a result of their personnel or equipment and facilities.

If you are considering a law suit for personal injury you must act quickly following the accident, and seek the advice of a lawyer immediately.   The Lawyer will be able to ascertain whether you have sufficient circumstance to file a claim.

Failing to Seek Medical Evaluation

If you have sustained an injury due to a motor vehicle accident, slipping fall or other kind of injury you may feel like a doctor’s evaluation is not needed.  Immediately following the accident the human body will elevate its adrenaline which can act as a temporary pain blocker while the injured is in shock.   You may have sustained a significant injury which may not present itself until the day or two days after the injury.  Ensure you see a doctor or emergency room immediately following any accident to get the important first examination which will measure and estimate physical loss (if any) for legal purposes.

Be Honest About Previous Injuries because you would be amazed by how much Insurance Companies are able to know about your health history, when it comes down to making a request.  It’s fraud, so don’t do it.

Refusal to Follow Medical Advice is another problem that can cause you to lose your personal injury suit.   If you have been injured and you are receiving therapy, ensure that you are following your practitioner’s advice precisely.   If it appears as though you may be exacerbating your injuries by not following medical advice, your law suit will be jeopardized.

We know that thinking about having an accident can be stressful, but it is important to prepare yourself for the day when you may be injured and confronted with the important task of presenting your best personal injury case for compensation.  Make a checklist of things to remember and keep it in your car and in your wallet to prompt you to pay close attention to the details that can give you the best chance at winning your law suit.

Author Bio:

Frank Pipolo is President of FP Internet Marketing a certified Internet marketing consultant, professional marketing advisor to law firms, legal marketers, administrators and lawyers, and writer for Swope, Rodante P.A., a Tampa Florida law firm that specializes inMotorcycle Accident Lawyer. He has more than 20 years’ experience partnering with clients to build their business through development and implementation of track-proven Internet marketing strategies.. Follow him on Google+

Personal injury lawyer Clearwater

The Importance of Uninsured Motorist Coverage in an Auto Accident

Mark Perenich Clearwater Personal Injury Lawyer

Do you know the importance of uninsured motorist coverage?

Many people are unaware if they even have uninsured motorist coverage, and in my opinion, it’s one of the most important types of insurance to have. Hopefully after reading this you will have a general understanding of uninsured motorist coverage and why you need it.
Q. What is uninsured motorist coverage?
A. Uninsured motorist coverage provides for a driver to receive damages for any injury he or she receives from an uninsured, negligent driver. This type of coverage is typically added to a driver’s current policy. In the event of an car accident, the insurance company pays the difference between what the uninsured driver can pay and what the injured driver would be entitled to as if the uninsured motorist had insurance.
Q. What losses does UMC cover in the event of an auto accident?
A. Uninsured motorist coverage is meant to compensate you for both financial and non-financial losses that occur in result of an accident. This includes any medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, vehicle repair, and other out-of-pocket expenses.
Q. Who does it cover?
A. Generally it will cover yourself, any household members, minors, and family members that may not reside in the house (i.e. children in college).
Q. Why is it so important to have uninsured motorist coverage on your auto insurance policy?
A. Because there are many drivers that are driving without insurance, in Florida 24% of drivers are without coverage. And if the other driver does have coverage it may be limited to only $10,000. If you get into an auto accident requiring an ambulance ride ($3,000-$8,000) or worse, a helicopter ride to the near by hospital ($10,000-$20,000), there may not be enough in the other driver’s policy to cover just your transportation let alone your medical expenses. In my career I have seen many people that cannot recover any damages, in order to cover large medical bills and lost wages, because they did not have uninsured motorist protection. It can make a tragic accident a life long burden.
Q. How do I protect myself from an uninsured driver?
A. Call your insurance company and ask them if you have uninsured motorist coverage. If you do not, ask to add it to your policy it is usually a very low increase on your premium, and well worth it.

If you have any have any questions concerning insurance, law, or an auto accident, please contact me at (727) 386-9677.

Clearwater Personal Injury Attorney Mark Perenich

Fluoride in Pinellas county’s drinking water

Personal Injury lawyer Mark Perenich

“Fluoride’s back!” Pt II

On the behalf of Mark Perenich :

Note that Mr. Perenich is not a medical Doctor.

Whether one thinks fluoride is good or bad one thing is for certain it is not like a normal food supplement. Even if a patient thought they were fluoride deficient and worried about dental carries, they could not go to a store and buy a bottle of fluoride tablets. They must get a prescription from a doctor and have it filled at pharmacy. This begs the question: If fluoride is so toxic that it must be handled as drug given on a prescription basis under the direction of a physician, why then should it be dumped indiscriminately in the water supply. Especially, in light of the fact adding fluoride to the water supply is practically medicating citizens without their consent? In medicine the same drug dose for a child or the elderly is different from that of a healthy adult. However, with placing fluoride in the water supply every one gets roughly the same dose of a prescription drug.   Additionally, nearly all dental treatments where fluoride is used none of it is to be ingested, but rather applied topically. It should be noted that most European nations do not put fluoride in their water supply and do not have high rates of dental carries. One would think if fluoride was so important to preventing dental carries countries without it in the water supply should have astronomical rates of tooth decay, but fact is they don’t.   So in final analysis Fluoride is not a harmless mineral applied to the water supply, it is a powerful ingredient used pesticides/herbicides. Outside of your drinking water it must be obtained by prescription and when it is applied to prevent carries in dental practice it is never given for ingestion. Citizens ought to know these things about a drug placed in their water supply so they can make informed decisions. However, whether you are for fluoride or against it the truth is if you live in Pinellas County fluoride is back.

Mark Perenich Personal injury lawyer in clearwater Contact Mark at 727-386-9677

[i] Geoffrey Smith, “Fluoridation—are the dangers resolved?” New Scientist. 1983 May 5. 286 – 7.
[ii]Richard D Shin, Mark A Silverberg. Fluoride Toxicty. Medscape Reference. (accessed July 22, 2013 athttp://emedicine.medscape.com/article/814774-overview#a0199) January 14, 2013.
[iii] Shivaprakrah PK, Ohri K, Noorani H. Relation between dental fluorosis and intelligence quotient in school children of Bagalkot district. Journal of Indian Society of Pedodontics and Preventative Dentistry. 2011; 29: 117 – 120.
[iv] Choi AL, Sun G, Zhang Y, Grandjean P. Developmental Fluoride Neurotoxicity: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis. Environmental Health Perspectives. 2012; 10: 1362 – 1368.
[v] Michael R. Dobbs. Clinical Neurotoxicology: Syndromes, Substances, Environments (Philadelphia, PA: Saunders Elsevier, 2009) 197 – 8.
[vi] Ibid.