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Personal Injury

Automobile Accidents

The Dickstein Law Firm

Hundreds of vehicles get in accidents every day. Car accidents can lead to severe injuries and destroy a vehicle completely. The aftermath of an automobile accident can forever alter the reality of the victims. In some cases, the medical conditions resulting from the car accident aren’t visible until a very long time afterwards.

The injured party may be entitled to financial compensation for the property damage and pain caused by the accident. Our law firm can help you get the compensation you deserve and help mitigate the wide-range of effects the accident may have on your life and health. Whether you choose to take your case to the court or prefer an out-of-court settlement, our firm will make sure that the insurance industry, the judge and other side’s lawyers take your claims seriously.

Motorcycle Accidents

The Dickstein Law Firm

The Dickstein Law Firm understands that motorcycle accidents and injuries can be caused by a number of factors, including defective roadway designs, poor weather conditions, product defects (including tires and helmet), and other recklessness or negligence of other drivers.

Because motorcycles do not offer the physical protection that cars do, the motorcycle riders are much more susceptible to injuries, such as traumatic brain injuries (TBIs), broken limbs, road rash and other serious conditions.

Tragically, some motorcyclists fare much worse, losing their lives in motorcycle accidents. Our South Florida streets are prone to motorcycle collisions more than other parts of the country. If you are a victim of a motorcycle accident, it is essential for you to gather information as soon as possible.

That includes the following:

Take photographs of the damaged vehicles involved.

Secure the contact information of any witnesses and passengers at the scene and requesting them to stay, if possible, until authorities arrive.

Notify your insurance company.

Seek medical attention, and

Contact The Dickstein Law Firm to assist you in all legal matters pertaining to your incident.

Boating Accidents

The Dickstein Law Firm

There are thousands of boating accidents in the United States resulting in serious or fatal injures every year. Boat accident involving powerboats are the most common, but any water vessel can be involved in the accident. No matter what type of boating accident you are in, the steps afterwards will be crucial to ensuring proper compensation.

The Dickstein Law Firm is here to help victims of these accidents be made whole and get maximum compensation for their losses.

If you are able, immediately following an accident, you should contact the Coast Guard to report it.

The Coast Guard will send emergency personnel to the scene to provide medical services and assess the situation. You are required to contact the Coast Guard following a boating accident in which injury or death has occurred. The Coast Guard must also be notified if a vessel has been completely destroyed or if you estimate more than $2,000 in property damage.

While waiting for the Coast Guard, you should begin gathering information. Try to obtain the name, contact information and insurance information of any other boaters involved in the accident. Try to also gather contact information from passengers and witnesses to the accident. Do not admit fault to anyone you to talk to following your accident.

As soon as possible, you will want to notify your insurance company; where you will be provided a claim number; which identifies any claim for benefits you may have and, contact The Dickstein Law Firm to assist you with all the legal matters you will have from this incident.

Slip & Fall Injuries

The Dickstein Law Firm

Slip, trip and fall accidents can lead to serious harm and may even prove to be fatal. The majority of the time, however, these aren’t accidents at all and are a result of someone else’s negligence and carelessness. In most cases, these falls happen due to hazardous conditions that have been ignored for far too long by a property owner.

Our law firm can take on the difficult task of proving that the property owners and managers knew well enough about the hazards, but chose to ignore them.

If you have been injured in a slip and fall or a trip and fall accident caused by the negligence of another person, we can help you claim compensation for medical expenses, loss of work, undue suffering and other related future expenses. Our qualified law firm will thoroughly review your case and assess if it meets the legal requirements, discussing your options clearly along the way.

Medical Malpractice

The Dickstein Law Firm

Medical malpractice occurs when a doctor performs his or her job carelessly and injuries result therefrom. An injured party must prove that a healthcare provider and/or medical facility provided services at a level lower than "that level of care, skill, and treatment which, in light of all relevant surrounding circumstances, is recognized as acceptable and appropriate by reasonably prudent similar health care providers." Stated another way, you must establish that the healthcare provider and/or medical facility acted below the general standard of care in the community.

If you have been injured in this way, it is imperative that you do not delay in seeking legal advice. In Florida, the Statute of Limitations for filing a medical malpractice claim is two years from when the patient (or sometimes a particular family member or guardian) knows or should have known, with the exercise of reasonable care, that the injury has occurred, and there is a reasonable possibility that the injury was caused by medical malpractice. There are several exceptions to this rule as well as notice requirements that must be filed.

Products Liability

The Dickstein Law Firm

When a consumer purchases a product, they anticipate that it will perform well and safely. However, sometimes it turns out to be defective and disappointing to use, mostly due to some inherent design or manufacturing flaws. These defects may lead to tragic and sometimes life threatening consequences for the buyers and their families.

If you have come across a potentially harmful product that didn’t deliver on all the hype and promises, we can help bring about a product liability case to get you justice from any or all the people and companies involved in bringing that product to the market. This case can hold them liable for any injury caused by their products.

Our law firm has extensive experience of representing consumers who have been injured or harmed in any way by using defective products at home or at work. This not only helps our clients but also makes manufacturers more responsible for the products they put out in the market.

Wrongful Death

The Dickstein Law Firm

The sudden and unexpected loss of a loved one can impact a family deeply. Not only do they succumb to feelings of despair, but sometimes, the corresponding loss of financial support and guidance can further complicate matters for them.

Florida law recognizes that families experiencing the loss of loved ones due to someone else’s neglect or negligence need a legal remedy. There is a strong desire to see the wrongdoers, be they an organization or an individual, be held accountable for their actions. Our law firm is here to discuss your wrongful death claims, and can represent you in any cases you may decide to pursue.

We have the skill and experience needed to respectfully handle your case. Our law firm offers you sincere, professional and knowledgeable legal counsel, helping your cause to seek justice and recover any compensation as per Florida law.

PHYSICAL ASSAULT CLAIMS

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If you are injured as a result of a work-related accident, your employer's workers' compensation coverage provides medical and partial wage replacement benefits that you may be entitled to.

MEDICAL BENEFITS

The Dickstein Law Firm

As soon as the insurance carrier for your employer knows about your work-related injury, the carrier is supposed to:

  • Determine the compensability of your injury.
  • Provide an authorized doctor.
  • Pay for all authorized medically necessary care and treatment related to your injury.

Authorized treatment and care may include:

  • Doctors visits
  • Hospitalization
  • Physical Therapy
  • Medical tests
  • Prescription drugs
  • Prostheses
  • Attendant care
  • Surgical expenses
  • Travel expenses to and from your authorized health care provider

Once you reach maximum medical improvement (MMI) which is the day that your health care providers have all stated that further improvement regarding your condition is unlikely, you are required to pay a $10.00 co-payment per visit for future medical attention.

WAGE REPLACEMENT BENEFITS

Your workers' compensation benefits for lost wages will start on the eighth day that you are unable to work. You will not receive wage replacement benefits for the first seven days of work missed, unless you are out of work for more than twenty-one days due to your work-related injury. In most case, the wage replacement benefits will equal two thirds of your pre-injury regular weekly wage, but the benefit will not be higher than Florida's Average Weekly Wage (AWW). If you qualify for wage replacement benefits, you can generally expect to receive your first check within twenty-one days after the carrier becomes aware of your injury, and bi-weekly thereafter. You will be eligible for different types of wage replacement benefits, depending on the progress of the claim and the severity of the injury.

TYPES OF WAGE BENEFITS

Temporary Total Disability: These benefits are provided as a result of an injury that temporarily precludes you from returning to work and you have not reached MMI.

Temporary Partial Disability: These benefits are provided when the doctor releases you to return to work and you have not reached MMI and earn less than 80% of the difference between your pre-injury wages and your post-injury wages.

The maximum amount of time you can receive any temporary disability benefits is 104 weeks or until the date of MMI is determined, whichever is earlier.

Permanent Impairment Benefits: These benefits are provided when the injury causes any physical, psychological or functional loss and the impairment exists after the date of MMI. A doctor will assign a permanent impairment rating, expressed as a percentage to the injury. If you return to work at or above your pre-injury wage, the permanent impairment benefits are reduced by 50%.
Permanent Total Disability: These benefits are provided when the injury causes you to be permanently and totally disabled according to the conditions stated in the law.
Death Benefits: The maximum benefit is $150,000 for any death resulting from a work place accident.

STATUTE OF LIMITATIONS

If you have been injured while in the course and scope of your employment, you must immediately report the injury to your employer. Additionally, you must request medical attention if necessary. Failure to do so within 30 days of the incident, will subject you to waiving your right to your Workers' Compensation benefits due to your failure to timely report the accident and the injuries you sustained. You have two years from the date of your injury to file a claim. Your eligibility for benefits may be eliminated one year from the date you last received a wage replacement check, or one year from the date you last received authorized medical care and treatment.

PETITION FOR BENEFITS

To begin the judicial procedure for obtaining benefits that are due and owing under the law and have not been provided by the employer or insurance carrier, a Petition for Benefits must be filed with the Offices of the Judge of Compensation Claims.

INJURED WORKER RESPONSIBILITIES

(DO NOT LET YOUR EMPLOYER SCARE YOU FROM OBTAINING THE BENEFITS YOU ARE ENTITLED TO!)

Contact your supervisor/employer immediately to notify them of the on the job injury.
Tell your employer you want medical attention if you believe your injury necessitates it.
Provide the insurance carrier with your personal signature verifying that you have reviewed and understand the mandatory Fraud Statement.
Report any wages (from all employment) to the insurance carrier when requested.
Keep your appointments with your authorized health care providers.
Follow your doctor's treatment plan and comply with any restrictions.

WORKERS' COMPENSATION INSURER RESPONSIBILITIES

  • Timely provision of medical care
  • Timely provision of wage replacement benefits
  • Timely payment of medical bills
  • Timely reporting your claim to the Division of Workers' Compensation

EMPLOYEE ASSISTANCE OFFICE

The Division of Workers' Compensation Employee Assistance Office (EAO) helps prevent and resolve disputes between injured workers and the employer/carriers. If the insurance carrier does not provide the benefits to which you believe you are entitled, you can call the EAO at (800) 342-1741. EAO specialists will address your complaints and conduct an investigation, if necessary, to determine why it is you are not receiving your benefits.

Dog Bite Claims
Defenses to a Florida Dog Bite Claim

A Florida dog owner has two defenses to a dog bite claim: trespassing and comparative negligence. Florida's dog bite law requires an injured person to be "lawfully" in the place where the bite occurred in order to recover damages. A person who is trespassing on private property without permission is not "lawfully" on the private property. Therefore, a dog bite owner could argue that the injured person was trespassing and is therefore not entitled to collect damages.

One partial defense a dog owner might raise is the defense of comparative negligence. Under Florida's dog bite law, if a dog bite injury victim's own negligence is partly the cause of the dog bite, the amount of damages a liable owner must pay will be reduced by a percentage equal to the percentage of blame assigned to the injured person.

Florida's Dog Bite Statute

Florida's dog bite statute,  FLSA 767.04, states that a dog owner is liable for injuries if:

the dog bites another person, and

the person is in a public place or lawfully in a private place.

This statute only covers injuries caused by dog bites. However, a person who is injured by a dog in another way may be able to prove the owner is liable if the injured person can show the owner’s negligence, or failure to use reasonable care, resulted in the injury. For instance, a person who is knocked down and injured by a dog may be able to hold the owner liable for failing to use a leash and properly restraining the dog.

Florida is a "Strict Liability" Dog Bite State

Florida is a "strict liability" state when it comes to dog bites. In other words, a Florida dog owner may be held liable if his or her dog bites someone, even if the owner had no prior knowledge or warning that the dog might bite. The injured person does not have to prove that a lack of reasonable care caused the bite.

Burn Injuries

 

Burn injuries can be among the most serious of all workplace injuries, requiring surgery, physical therapy, and extensive rehabilitation. Burn injury victims can be left with physical and emotional scars that may never heal.

If you’ve been burned in a workplace accident, you’re entitled to full workers’ comp benefits. In some cases, you may be eligible for additional compensation outside of the workers’ comp system. If you or a family member has been seriously burned you can count on The Dickstein Law Firm to help you pursue compensation for medical care, missed time from work, as well as the physical and emotional pain and suffering you have endured.

Types of Burn Injuries

Depending on the type and severity, burns at work can result in extensive skin damage, internal injuries, and complications including shock, infection, and cardiac arrest.

There are three main types of workplace burn injuries:

Chemical Burns: A chemical burn occurs when a synthetic, corrosive substance contacts soft tissue. Soft tissues include the skin, eyes, ears, and lungs. The main types of corrosive compounds are acids, bases, oxidizers, solvents, thinning agents, and alkylating agents.

Electrical Burns: An electrical burn is a result of contact with either alternating current (AC) or direct current (DC). Electrical burns occur from touching a functioning electrical socket or wire, falling into electrified water, or being struck by lightning.

Thermal Burns: A thermal or heat burn is caused by contact with a flame, steam, or boiling liquids like water or grease. Thermal burns can also occur from touching hot, solid objects such as pipes, tools, engines, and motors.

Burn Ratings by Degree

Chemical, electrical, and thermal burns are rated according to their severity. The higher the number of degrees, the more severe the burn.

The amount of worker’s compensation you can get may depend on how badly you’ve been burned, calculated by the severity of the burns, how much of the body is affected, and the body location of the burns.

First-degree burns affect only the outer layer of skin, called the epidermis. This is the least serious burn and generally results in redness, pain, and general discomfort.

Second-degree burns are similar but more serious than a first-degree burn. It affects both the epidermis and the second layer of skin (dermis) and causes redness, pain, and general discomfort. This type of burn often results in blisters and possibly some scarring.

Third-degree burns extend into the fatty layer beneath the dermis. Third-degree burns can penetrate deep enough to destroy nerves. They often result in waxy, white, or leathery skin. These burns can be extremely painful.

Fourth-degree burns are the most serious of all burn injuries. This type of burn penetrates deeply beneath the skin, causing nerve damage and charred muscles, tendons, ligaments, and bones. Fourth-degree burns are often fatal.

Florida Division of Workers Compensation - https://www.myfloridacfo.com/division/wc/

Florida Statute - Report of initial treatment of burn injuries; penalty for failure to report

Any person who initially treats or is requested to treat a person with second-degree or third-degree burn injuries affecting 10 percent or more of the surface area of his or her body shall immediately report such treatment to the local sheriff’s department if the treating person determines that the burns were caused by a flammable substance and if the treating person suspects the injury is a result of violence or unlawful activity. The report shall state the name and address of the injured person and the extent of his or her injuries. This section does not apply to burn injuries received by a member of the armed forces, or by a governmental employee, engaged in the performance of his or her duties.

Any person who willfully fails to make the report required by subsection (1) is guilty of a misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083.

Negligent Security & Premises Liability

Negligent security claims fall under the umbrella of premises liability negligence. When a business or property owner fails to adequately secure their property, it can be held liable for crimes that are committed on that property. Robberies, rapes and assaults often occur due to a lack of security. If you were injured on another person’s property and believe that negligent security was to blame, you have a right to seek compensation. The Dickstein Law Firm can help you file a claim and hold the property owner responsible.

Negligent security is a type of negligence case. Florida business owners might be liable if they don’t provide adequate security for their premises and that failure results in personal injury, death or property damage. Businesses have a duty under Florida law to keep their customers safe, and providing basic security is a way to prevent foreseeable dangers like a robbery.

Injured plaintiffs can win their negligent security case by proving that:

  • That the property owner owed a duty of care to the victim – This includes protecting guests and patrons from crimes that are reasonably foreseeable and preventable.
  • That the duty of care was breached – A breach of duty can occur when a property owner recognizes increased crime in their community; but fails to take action by installing better security, improving the lighting or trimming overgrown bushes.
  • That the breach of care was the cause of the crime – Negligent or inadequate security can create an environment that encourages criminal activity.
  • That the victim sustained injuries as a result of the crime – Injuries sustained must be quantifiable and can include economic losses like medical bills and non-economic losses; including pain and suffering

Premises Liability

In the state of Florida, premises liability claims must be filed within 4 years of the crime or the accident. If you miss this deadline, which is known as the statute of limitations, you will not be able to file a claim. The Dickstein Law Firmcan help you file the necessary paperwork to ensure you don’t miss any critical deadlines. Premises liability claims include slip and fall incidents and any accident which is due to the activity and/or lack of activity of the premises owner and/or it’s agent that they knew or should of known could cause injury and/or death.

How to File a Premises Liability Claim To successfully argue a premises liability claim, your attorney must clearly establish 4 factors:

  • That the property owner owed a duty of care to the victim – This includes protecting guests and patrons from crimes that are reasonably foreseeable and preventable.
  • That the duty of care was breached – A breach of duty can occur when a property owner recognizes increased crime in their community; but fails to take action by installing better security, improving the lighting or trimming overgrown bushes
  • That the breach of care was the cause of the crime – Negligent or inadequate security can create an environment that encourages criminal activity.
  • That the victim sustained injuries as a result of the crime – Injuries sustained must be quantifiable and can include economic losses like medical bills and non-economic losses; including pain and suffering.

STEPS TO TAKE FOLLOWING YOUR PERSONAL INJURY

SEEK TREATMENT IMMEDIATELY

Following your injury, get care and treatment with a health care provider as soon as possible.  Inform the provider of all your complaints. Failure to provide all of your complaints to your health care provider may subject you to difficult times where an insurance carrier refuses to compensate you for your losses.

PHOTOGRAPHS

Photographs of your damaged vehicle are oftentimes the best evidence to establish the severity of your injuries.

SPEAK TO AN ATTORNEY BEFORE YOU DISCUSS OR SIGN ANYTHING

Before subjecting yourself to unfamiliar territory where trained professionals have you undergo a sworn statement that may be used against you at trial, talk to an experienced lawyer that can walk you through the legal system.

ATTORNEY'S FEES

The Dickstein Law Firm provides legal services on a contingency basis.  The firm receives a percentage (%) of any recovery in accordance with Florida Statutes, and advances all expenses and costs for the investigation phase of your case, the pre-suit portion and during litigation.

AUTOMOBILE INSURANCE

Personal Injury Protection (PIP):  No Fault Insurance is required in the state of Florida for all licensed drivers and it covers up to $10,000.00 of your medical bills for injuries sustained from a motor vehicle accident.  Your carrier covers 80% of all reasonable medical bills and 60% of your lost wages.  Normally, there is a $1,000.00 to $2,000.00 deductible associated with these types of policies.  Many carriers covering this type of policy refuse to pay the providers alleging that the care received was not medically necessary.  That is when a PIP lawsuit is necessary which requires you or your provider to sue your carrier.

Always inform your attorney of all cars that are owned by any member of your household.  You must submit a PIP application to your carrier within a reasonable amount of time following your accident.  Make sure you complete these forms and give them to your attorney to send to the carrier.

PROPERTY DAMAGE

This insurance pays for damage you caused to another's automobile.  The minimum amount of this coverage is $10,000.00.

UNINSURED AND UNDERINSURED MOTORIST COVERAGE

This coverage is the most important type of automobile coverage to carry; especially living in South Florida where you find many people refusing to carry any type of coverage or minimal coverage at best.  Uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage covers you and your family for losses, including those for pain and suffering, resulting from injuries sustained in an accident when the person who caused the accident does not have coverage or has an insufficient amount of coverage.

BODILY INJURY COVERAGE

This insurance insures you for any claims raised against you by persons injured in an accident that you caused.

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