Skolrood Law Firm Blog

Serving Central and South Virginia

Using Social Media After a Crash Can Hurt Your Claim

by Staff Blogger | January 2nd, 2020

A recent study found that 223 million Americans used at least one form of social media in 2019. Whether you use Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or Snapchat, it’s important to understand the effects that social media can have on your auto accident claim after a crash.

Insurance companies report big profits every year, and that’s primarily because they’re adept at finding ways to reduce or deny compensation claims. They have teams of adjusters who dig into claims and the histories and daily lives of the people who file them, including their social media accounts. If they get access to your posts, tweets, or pictures, they may find information that can be used against you—even if they take it out of context.

If you talk about your accident or your claim in a post or tweet and any of the facts don’t line up with what’s in your official compensation claim, it may result in less money or an outright denial. Additionally, if pictures of you are posted on social media that appear to show you taking part in activities that might be difficult due to your injuries, the insurance company may argue that you aren’t as hurt as you say you are.

At Skolrood Law Firm, our Roanoke auto accident attorneys do everything we can to protect injured victims from the insurance companies trying to deny them, and a part of that is informing victims what not to post on social media. If you have questions or concerns about what to do after a crash that wasn’t your fault, contact us today for a free consultation.

We’ll Give You the Respect and Care You Need After Your Loved One’s Death

by Staff Blogger | December 26th, 2019

If you recently lost a loved one due to a preventable accident, injury, or illness, you’re grieving and may have many questions and concerns on your mind. A common concern after a death in the family is money, especially if the deceased was the primary income-earner for the household. The costs of medical bills and funeral expenses on top of your usual expenses can be too much to bear without the paychecks your family depended on.

At Skolrood Law Firm, it’s our goal to help the surviving family members of people who died because of others’ negligence get the compensation they deserve. Just as we help people who are injured in accidents, we also help grieving family members after the deaths of their loved ones.

We know how difficult the aftermath of a loved one’s death can be. When you contact us, our Roanoke wrongful death lawyers will treat you and your family with the respect, care, and consideration you need during this painful time. In addition, we’ll do everything in our power to maximize your chances of getting full compensation for all related expenses.

You’ve gone through enough already. The last thing you need is to deal with huge bills you can’t afford and an uncooperative insurance company who wants to reduce or deny you the payments you deserve. Let us handle that while you spend time with your family and grieve your loss. Contact us today for a free consultation to find out how we can help.

2 Reasons Why Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect Occur

by Staff Blogger | December 19th, 2019

Nursing homes are supposed to be safe places where elderly and disabled people can get the care and attention they need. It’s difficult to imagine that they can instead be places where residents are actively neglected or even abused. Unfortunately, that’s the reality for a large number of nursing home residents in Virginia and throughout the U.S.

Although nursing home abuse and neglect can sometimes be caused by a single employee, it’s often due to a more systemic cause that can be traced back to the way owners and administrators run their facilities. In many cases, it comes down to money and attempting to save it in two ways:

  1. Understaffing—Fully staffed nursing homes are expensive to run and operate. They may need doctors and nurses onsite, in addition to dozens of caretakers and support staff. Some nursing homes try to maximize profits by understaffing, which can put residents at risk.
  2. Hiring inexperienced and unqualified employees—Nursing home employees should have the proper education and training to do their jobs. They should also pass background checks and security clearances. When nursing homes don’t vet their employees, residents suffer.

At Skolrood Law Firm, our Roanoke nursing home abuse lawyers know the common causes of abuse and neglect, and we know how to find evidence that owners or administrators failed to do their due diligence to prevent it. If your loved one was neglected or abused in a nursing home, we want to help. Contact us today for a free consultation.

3 Common Causes of Motorcycle Accidents

by Staff Blogger | December 12th, 2019

If you’re a motorcyclist, avoiding accidents is always a major concern. Motorcycles provide zero protection to riders, and even the most well-equipped riders still face serious risks when they’re involved in crashes. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says that motorcyclists are 28 times more likely to suffer fatal injuries during accidents than people in passenger vehicles.

Usually, the biggest risk that motorcyclists face isn’t their own lack of skill, experience, or caution. Instead, it’s other drivers and roadway hazards. Three of the most common causes of motorcycle crashes include:

  1. Drivers turning left in front of motorcyclists—Whether they’re turning left at intersections or into driveways, drivers don’t always look out for people traveling on two wheels. When they fail to notice or look for motorcycles and then turn left, drivers can turn directly in front of motorcyclists, resulting in deadly crashes.
  2. Drivers following too closely—Motorcycles can accelerate and stop much more quickly than passenger vehicles. When drivers follow motorcyclists too closely, they’re often unable to slow down or stop in time in response to traffic slowdowns. In addition, drivers who are distracted or aren’t paying attention may rear-end motorcyclists.
  3. Roadway debris—Wet leaves, loose gravel, and potholes are usually nothing more than minor annoyances for drivers—if they’re noticed at all. But for motorcyclists, they can be extremely dangerous. Riders must constantly scan the road ahead for potential hazards, and sometimes, they don’t see them until it’s too late.

At Skolrood Law Firm, our Roanoke motorcycle accident attorneys assist injured riders get compensation for their medical expenses when they get hurt through no fault of their own. If you or someone you love was hurt in a crash, contact us today for a free consultation.

3 Ways Traumatic Brain Injuries Affect Victims

by Staff Blogger | December 5th, 2019

Whether the result of an auto accident, motorcycle accident, truck accident, or even an act of violence, traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) are often life-changing experiences for victims. The brain is a complex and extremely vulnerable organ, and even seemingly minor bumps can result in concussions, swelling, or bleeding, and a host of associated complications.

The extent of TBIs aren’t always obvious. Minor TBIs may cause subtle changes, while more severe TBIs can cause profound difficulties and challenges for victims. Three common TBI-related complications and changes victims experience include:

  1. Personality changes—There are many stories of TBI victims experiencing dramatic changes in personality and demeanor. Individuals who were laid back before their injuries may become anxious and tense, while others may lose their filters in social settings and say inappropriate or offensive things.
  2. Reduced motor skills—Brain injuries can affect victims’ abilities to perform routine tasks, such as eating, getting dressed, or driving vehicles. People who experience reduced motor skills may even lose their ability to work.
  3. Cognitive problems—TBIs can affect the frontal lobe and parts of the brain responsible for thinking and executive function. Victims may experience difficulty with vocabulary, speech, and critical thinking after their injuries.

TBIs aren’t just life-changing—they’re also expensive. Victims often require extensive medical care or even daily assistance from medical professionals. In addition, the complications of their injuries may make it impossible for them to work, which means no paychecks.

At Skolrood Law Firm, our Roanoke brain injury lawyers fight to help TBI victims get the compensation they deserve. Contact us today for a free consultation if you or someone you love suffered a TBI.

After an Injury, Get a Law Firm that Cares about Your Recovery

by Staff Blogger | November 28th, 2019

At Skolrood Law Firm, we know that auto accidents, motorcycle accidents, and truck accidents aren’t the only types of accidents that cause innocent people to suffer serious injuries. We handle a variety of injury claims that are caused by negligent people or parties, including:

  • Brain and spinal cord injuries
  • Nursing home abuse injuries
  • Wrongful deaths
  • And more

No matter what type of injury you suffered, there’s a good chance the insurance company will be reluctant to pay you the money you deserve. They may reduce your settlement or even deny it altogether. Insurance companies report huge profits year after year specifically because they’re adept at not paying people the settlements they’re owed.

Our Roanoke personal injury lawyers don’t let innocent victims get taken advantage of by greedy insurance companies. We build claims that are backed by evidence that they simply can’t ignore. Then, we calculate how much money our clients are owed for their medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering. And finally, we present our claims and demand fair settlements. If they still refuse to pay, we don’t hesitate to take the cases to court.

Going it alone after an injury that wasn’t your fault means you’re leaving your financial recovery up to chance or even in the hands of an insurance adjuster who wants to pay you as little as possible. Contact us today, and let us level the playing field for you. We have years of experience helping injured victims, and we know the tricks insurance companies use to protect their profits.

Truck Drivers, Owners, and Companies Are Held to High Safety Standards

by Staff Blogger | November 21st, 2019

When you get behind the wheel of any vehicle, you’re required to follow a few important traffic laws, including driving at or below the speed limit, coming to a complete stop at stop signs and red lights, not driving while intoxicated, using your turn signal before turning, and maintaining a lane.

In addition to being required to follow all of those laws, truck drivers must also follow requirements dictated by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). And it’s not just truck drivers who must abide by these stricter rules. Truck owners and companies also must follow the FMCSA’s guidelines, which are designed to make the operation of trucks on U.S. highways and interstates safer for both truck drivers and other motorists.

Examples of FMCSA guidelines include:

  • Hours of service limits for drivers—The trucking industry is all about making deliveries on time and maximizing productivity. To generate bigger profits, truck drivers may be pressured into driving for long periods of time, but sleepiness and fatigue can be deadly. The FMCSA requires that truck drivers take regular breaks as well as limits how long they can work in a 24-hour period.
  • Maximum weight limits—Truck companies may be tempted to load their trucks with as much cargo as possible to maximize their profits. But doing so can be dangerous, as it can make trucks more difficult to drive and stop. The FMCSA limits how much trucks can weigh when fully loaded.

If you or someone you love was injured in a truck accident, it may have been caused by an FMCSA violation. The Roanoke truck accident lawyers at Skolrood Law Firm can investigate the accident and determine its cause, and then we’ll hold the responsible parties liable for your accident-related expenses. Contact us today for a free consultation.

Who Can Be Held Liable for Medical Malpractice?

by Staff Blogger | November 14th, 2019

Medical malpractice is a term used to describe a situation when a medical or healthcare professional acts in a negligent or careless manner resulting in injury or illness in a patient. The healthcare industry is highly regulated and many of the roles that involve direct patient interaction require years of education, training, and certifications. When providers make mistakes that cause patients to suffer harm, they should be held accountable. But which providers can be liable for medical malpractice?

Almost all medical professionals can commit medical malpractice, including:

  • Doctors, surgeons, psychiatrists, and dentists
  • Nurses, midwives, nurse practitioners, and physician assistants
  • Physiotherapists, osteopaths, chiropractors, podiatrists, psychologists, pharmacists, optometrists, and more

The degree to which each professional may be held accountable for medical malpractice differs depending on their role in treating patients, their level of education, and their autonomy in healthcare practices. For example, doctors who make careless mistakes before, during, or after delivery are often held to a higher standard of care than nurses and midwives.

In addition, sometimes healthcare facilities themselves can be held liable when patients suffer poor outcomes, especially when their hiring practices are negligent or fail to abide by industry and state requirements and standards.

If you or someone you love was harmed by a healthcare professional or facility, it’s important to have an experienced Roanoke medical malpractice lawyer on your side. Skolrood Law Firm has many years of experience investigating, building, and winning medical malpractice claims for innocent victims, and we know who to hold accountable when serious mistakes occur. Contact us today for a free consultation.

3 Post-Auto Accident Dos and Don’ts

by Staff Blogger | November 7th, 2019

The aftermath of an auto accident is a confusing, stressful, and often painful time. It can be difficult to think straight after a crash that leaves you injured, but if you’re capable of doing so, following a few steps—and avoiding a few mistakes—can help you protect your health and your right to compensation.

After the crash, DO:

  1. Get medical attention—Even if you don’t think you were seriously injured, getting medical attention helps prove your injuries are accident-related and rules out internal injuries.
  2. Get the other driver’s contact information—Exchange insurance details with the other driver and get their name, phone number, and email address.
  3. Get a lawyer—Having a Roanoke auto accident lawyer on your side right away after a crash can improve your chances of getting compensation, especially when evidence is still easily obtained.

After the crash, DON’T:

  1. Leave the scene before police arrive—Always call 911 after the crash, and never assume someone else already has. When police arrive, remain at the scene until either you leave with EMS or you’re told you can go.
  2. Admit fault for the accident—Admitting partial or full fault for the crash can jeopardize your chances of getting compensation, even if it’s later proven you didn’t cause the accident.
  3. Exaggerate or downplay your injuries—When talking to the police, your doctor, or your lawyer, always be truthful about your injuries. Making false statements about your injuries can jeopardize your chances of getting a settlement.

Need an experienced law firm after an accident that wasn’t your fault? Contact Skolrood Law Firm today. We’re here to help.

What Injuries Are Associated with Motorcycle Accidents?

by Staff Blogger | October 31st, 2019

Motorcyclists can take many steps to protect themselves when they ride. Wearing an industry-approved and certified helmet can significantly reduce the risk of traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) and death, and wearing a riding jacket, pants, gloves, and boots can protect skin, limbs, fingers, and toes during crashes. However, no amount of safety gear can make motorcycles as safe as passenger vehicles, and riders take on significant risks every time they hit the road.

The two biggest risks that safety-conscious motorcyclists face are road hazards such as fallen tree limbs, loose gravel, and other road debris, and other drivers—especially when those drivers are negligent and fail to look for people traveling on two wheels. Whether motorcyclists are hurt because of obstacles in the road or because of careless drivers, the injuries they suffer can be serious and even life-threatening.

Common injuries associated with motorcycle accidents include:

  • Broken bones—When riders are thrown from their bikes during collisions, they’re likely to suffer simple or compound fractures of bones. Broken bones can range from painful to potentially fatal, and often impede victims from working while they recover.
  • Road rash—Exposed skin can be seriously injured during crashes, resulting in road rash. Even riders who wear protective gear may experience road rash if the gear isn’t thick enough to withstand the impact of the crash. Road rash is painful and can require skin grafts.
  • Traumatic brain injuries—Helmets add a significant amount of protection during crashes, and many helmet-wearing victims have been able to recover from crashes that would otherwise have been fatal. However, helmets aren’t always completely effective, and some victims suffer TBIs.

The Roanoke motorcycle accident lawyers at Skolrood Law Firm know how severe motorcycle accident injuries can be, and it’s our goal to help innocent victims get compensation. If you were injured in a motorcycle crash that wasn’t your fault, contact us today.