Indiana Injury Lawyer Blog

scales of justiceIndiana laws allow certain survivors of a person who has been killed as a result of the negligence of another to file compensation through a wrongful death claim. Such claims can help survivors recover compensation for lost benefits, loss of parental guidance, and a number of other damages.

Who can file a wrongful death claim in Indiana?

Under Indiana law, the personal representative of the deceased’s estate is eligible to file a wrongful death claim to recover damages. However, damages may be distributed among several eligible parties including the deceased’s spouse, children and others.

You must file a wrongful death claim within a specified time limit for your claim to be valid. Failure to file a claim within this period of time may render your claim null and void. It’s necessary to speak with an Indiana wrongful death attorney to understand whether you have grounds for filing a claim, and the procedure for filing a claim.

What are the damages available in a wrongful death claim?

Through a wrongful death claim, you may be able to recover several damages, including loss of the deceased’s financial support. That financial support can include both the wages and salaries that the deceased earned, and also benefits for which he or she would have been eligible. If the deceased incurred medical expenses before he died for treatment, those expenses can also be included in your claim. Besides, spouses and children may also be eligible for other damages that include loss of parental guidance, loss of consortium, loss of care, companionship and affection. They can also recover damages for funeral and burial expenses.  However, damages in a wrongful death claim are not unlimited.

Contacting a qualified and experienced medical malpractice and personal injury is of utmost importance if you believe you may qualify for a claim. The Indiana wrongful death attorneys at Montross Miller Muller Mendelson Kennedy represent persons who have lost loved ones as a result of others’ negligence.

Radiology ErrorsDiagnostic errors are some of the most common types of medical errors that can expose patients to harm. Many diagnostic errors are linked to misread radiology or other types of radiology errors. When there are mistakes made when reading or evaluating radiology reports, a patient’s condition may either be misdiagnosed or not diagnosed at all, causing severe trauma and placing the patient at risk of serious injuries.

What are the common types of radiology errors?

Some of the more common types of radiology errors involve misread radiology reports. Radiologists can read many reports in a day and in a busy, city hospital an overworked and over-stressed radiologist can go through dozens of radiology reports in a matter of hours. Naturally, the chance for errors to creep in during the reading of such reports is very high. The radiologist may identify a particular finding in the report as abnormal, but may not attribute it to the right cause. That leads to a wrong diagnosis of the patient.

Miscommunication or lack of communication with the clinician can also play a role in radiology errors. When radiological tests are ordered remotely, and the communication channels are not clearly established, ensuring the ordering physician has the most accurate report may be problematic. The radiologist may identify the abnormality, but may fail to appropriately convey this to the clinician. When there is a gap in communication between the two, a wrong diagnosis of the patient’s condition is inevitable.

The radiologist may also “under-read” the radiology report, which means that he or she may fail to locate or identify the abnormality. There are several other reasons why such radiology reports may be misread. For instance, the radiologist may not have enough access to a patient’s medical history or clinical data, and may be less likely to identify an abnormality.

Remember, a wrong diagnosis or a missed diagnosis because of a misread radiology report can result in delayed or wrong treatment of the patient. This can result in serious consequences, including a threat to the patient’s life.

If you suspect that you or a loved one has suffered a serious personal injury due to a misread radiology report, you should seek legal assistance immediately. A radiology medical malpractice claim may be necessary. Radiology medical malpractice claims are quite challenging. They require expert review of both the medical records and the radiology films. A successful claim also requires a full understanding of the medical condition in question, whether surgical, neurological, orthopedic, oncology, or more. In addition, its important to remember that Indiana has strict timelines for filing a claim and it is critical that an injured person files their claim as soon as possible.

The Indiana medical malpractice attorneys at Montross Miller Muller Mendelson Kennedy represent persons who have been injured as a result of medical negligence across Indiana.

birth injuriesSometimes, people mistakenly use the terms “birth defect” and “birth injury” interchangeably, but there are significant differences between the two.

Birth defects are health problems that may have genetic causes. Examples include Down syndrome or cardiac defects. In cases in which the defect is linked to DNA, the defect is not preventable.

However, there are some birth defects that are preventable. Certain birth defects are linked to the prescription and use of medications or prescription drugs during pregnancy and the birth. These defects are possibly preventable. If your baby has suffered a birth defect linked to certain prescription medications that you took at some point during your pregnancy, you should speak to a medical malpractice lawyer in Indiana. They will help determine whether you are eligible for a medical malpractice claim. If the drug was one that should not have been prescribed and resulted in a birth defect, you might be eligible for a claim.

A birth injury, on the other hand, is a condition of the infant caused either due to problems arising during the labor, or the delivery. Again, in some cases, these injuries may be preventable. Examples of birth injuries can include bone and joint injury, oxygen deprivation, or hypoxia that leads to a number of complications like cerebral palsy, Erb’s palsy and other injuries.

Medical personnel involved in your delivery must be on constant watch for any concerns of fetal stress or unusual symptoms from the mother. A failure to maintain alertness and respond quickly can result in serious consequences for the child and the mother. Medical personnel might also be negligent if they fail to perform a C-section in time to prevent oxygen deprivation to the infant, or fail to use the right kind of tools, like forceps, during the delivery. Sometimes, birth injuries are the result of medication errors, or excessive medication during the delivery.

Everyone dreams of a happy, healthy child. The delivery process can be a frightening time for all involved. The birth of a baby is a natural process but the importance of diligence in the delivery room cannot be overstated. When a preventable defect or birth injury occurs, it is important that an attorney review the medical records as early as possible.

Filing a claim for damages when your baby has suffered a birth defect or birth injury is complicated. It isn’t easy to establish that the injury or defect was the result of medical negligence. It’s important to speak with an attorney, and establish whether you have valid grounds for a claim. In any case, it’s important to seek legal counsel from an Indiana medical malpractice attorney immediately. Remember, most birth defects or birth injuries have life-long consequences.

The attorneys at Montross Miller Muller Mendelson & Kennedy, LLP have helped many medical malpractice injury victims throughout the state of Indiana. They are experts in the process and have the experience to help you. Call us for a consultation today.

Winter DrivingWinter in Indiana can be quite beautiful but it can also be quite treacherous.  When heavy snows fall overnight, or during rush hour traffic, even the most efficient snow removal systems have difficulty keeping up.

When the roads become slick and visibility is limited, Indiana drivers must be extra careful about their safety and the safety of other drivers on the road.  Every driver needs to remember there are several important tips for safer driving on snow and ice-covered roads.

  • Ensure that your tires are properly inflated.  This provides better traction on snow covered roads.
  • Never use cruise control while driving on slick and hazardous roads.  You have less control when the speed is set.
  • Always use your seat belt.
  • Ensure your windshield is clear of any snow or ice.  An obstructed view limits your options for avoiding hazards.
  • Increase the distance between you and the car ahead of you.  The two second rule only applies when road conditions are optimal.  You may not be able to stop quickly, or at all, if snow and ice are on the roads.
  • Remove snow that might be covering your car if you’ve parked outside during a snowfall.  Be sure your headlights, brake lights, and turn signals are free of snow to provide other drivers a clear indication of your intent.
  • Remove snow from the top of your car.  While blowing snow from the top of your car looks cool in your rear view mirror, it is a hazard to other drivers, obstructing their view of the road.  If you have ice that has formed on the roof of your car, this could fly off and hit a following vehicle with catastrophic results.
  • Finally, one should always ensure that they’ve left plenty of time to get to their destination.  Snow-covered roads will result in delays and being in a hurry only leads to a greater risk for you, your passengers, and other drivers.

In years past, the snow has fallen fast and furious, making the task of keeping the roads clear nearly impossible.  Unfortunately, many drivers fail to allow for the road conditions, maintain unsafe speeds, and putting themselves and other drivers at greater risk for injury and even death.

Not every driver is prepared for winter road conditions.  If you have been injured because of another driver’s careless driving on Indiana roads, the attorneys at Montross Miller Muller Mendelson & Kennedy, LLP invite you to contact the firm to see if you may be eligible for compensation for your injuries.  Time is limited to pursue a claim.  Contact them today.

New Year CelebrationDecember 31st is a marker day for many Indiana residents.  It is the perfect time to reflect on the year gone by, the next twelve months, and endless possibilities.  Many people form determined lists of good intentioned resolutions to make the next year the best one yet. People vow to lose weight, save money, exercise regularly, and many more goals.

Unfortunately, many choose to end their old year and begin their new with unrestrained celebration, a long night that leads into the new day, and heavy amounts of alcohol.  This is usually a combination that results in errors in judgement, reckless decision making, and an increased risk of accidents and injuries.

The Center for Disease Control notes that in 2013 more than 10,000 people were killed in alcohol related crashes.  This is nearly 31% of all automotive fatalities. That’s 30 people every single day – one death every 51 minutes.  The impact of these impaired driving deaths is more than the sorrow and pain of the survivors and family members of those killed.  The impact on American society is also a huge financial burden, at an annual cost of more than $59 billion each year.

If a driver leaves a party under the influence of alcohol, they will find that Indiana laws are direct and to the point when it comes to drinking and driving.

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2015 Kwanzaa

The attorneys and staff at Montross Miller Muller Mendelson & Kennedy, LLP hope that you and your family has a safe and happy holiday season.  Whether you celebrated Hanukkah earlier this month, or will celebrate Christmas or Kwanzaa in a few days, or New Years at the end of the month, we trust that the celebrations are special for all involved.

This time of year can be filled with joy and love because it brings family together and reminds us of many fond memories.  The lights, the colors, the smells of great food, and the closeness of family and friends can warm any hard heart.

2015 HanukkahBut for some, this can be the hardest time of the year.  It is a reminder of those loved ones who are not with us again this year.  The sadness that accompanies this season is often hard to express and explain.  Worse, for those who just lost a loved one, this might be the first major holiday without them at the table.  Their absence is as real this year as their presence was last.

We understand.  Whether a loved one died at a ripe old age or in their prime of their life, their passing is never easy.

christmas tree minitureFor those who may have died because of a car or truck accident, a work related injury, someone else’s carelessness, or a physician or hospital’s medical error, the pain can be even more devastating.  Unanswered questions leave family members rehashing the story over and over.

If you’ve lost a loved one in the past year because of someone else’s actions, contact our firm after the holidays.  The personal injury attorneys at Montross Miller Muller Mendelson & Kennedy, LLP understand your pain.  They are interested in hearing about your loved one and, if possible, they will investigate your claim.  Legal action will not bring back your loved one, or ease the pain your loss, but it might help answer some questions and bring resolution. Contact them to see if they can help.

2015 Holiday SafetyChristmas, Kwanzaa, Hanukkah, and New Years are all special holidays on the calendar.  They are opportunities for families and friends to gather together and enjoy the warm glow of love and laughter.

However, there is a darker side to the celebration of light that few people talk about.  The months of November and December see nearly 15,000 emergency room visits for those who have been injured by electrical shock, falling off roofs and ladders, and injuries due to broken glass ornaments.  The Consumer Product Safety Commission notes that these accidents may be funny in the movies but can be deadly serious for your family members.

Falls, lacerations, and fires top the list of holiday-related injuries and should be taken seriously.  Better yet, they should be avoided at all costs.

The National Safety Council has one again posted its guide for a safe and happy holiday season.  Some of the advice seems quite obvious but is frequently ignored.  The the NSC breaks the dangers into four major areas: Decoration Safety, Ladder Safety, Food Safety, and Vehicle Prep and Safety.

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Cerebral palsy baby shoeThe birth of a new baby is one of the most joyful moments in a family’s life.  Fathers count all the toes.  A mother holds her child after carrying the baby for nine months.  This is the perfect baby.

But for some, the dream delivery turns into a harsh reality when there are complications and difficulties.  The baby is rushed to the NICU because the labor took too long, the baby is breathing strangely, or some unknown concern is written across the doctor’s face.

For some families, the baby suffers no obvious problems and is soon sent home.  It is only months, even years later when the family begins to notice subtle differences between their child and all the rest on the playground.

In fact, most of the symptoms of cerebral palsy do not surface until the child is at least a few months old. That may make it more challenging for parents to tie the symptoms to the injuries that occurred at birth.  A parent can expect most of the symptoms of cerebral palsy to begin before the child reaches the age of three. Often, developmental delays and failure to reach basic milestones are the first signs that something is not entirely right.

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2015 thanksgiving dinnerAll the attorneys and staff at the law offices of Montross Miller Muller Mendelson & Kennedy, LLP, want to wish you and your family a Happy Thanksgiving.

We trust that the time you spend with family and friends will be filled with joy and a celebration of all that is good. Take the time to be thankful for all you’ve accomplished and those in your life who mean so much.

 

longterm careAbout 2 million Americans are living in some kind of nursing facility. When family members decide to admit a loved one into these nursing homes, they expect that their loved one will be taken care of, and that their needs will be met.  Unfortunately, residents at these facilities are very often subjected to abuse and neglect. If your family member currently lives in a nursing home, it is important to visit them frequently, and look for signs that all is not well.

In fact, there are often visible signs of nursing home abuse that should alert you to the possibility that your loved one is not being taken care of as well as you believe, and as well as they deserve.  One should look for bedsores or pressure ulcers as a sign that the loved one is not being very mobile.  A loved one may also be able to pick up signs of neglect if the loved one shows signs of a poor appetite, sudden weight loss, poor sanitation, and poor hygiene.

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