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2011 November Archive

Michigan Wrongful Death Laws Protect Those Who Lose Loved Ones in Crashes

By Lipton Law on November 28, 2011 - No comments

Michigan’s no-fault insurance laws prevent most people injured in car accidents from filing lawsuits in court to seek compensation. Instead, most people are expected to work out the situation with their insurance companies. When a family member suffers fatal injuries in a car accident, however, the survivors may bring a wrongful death claim to court in order to seek compensation.

A wrongful death suit can be filed by the personal representative of the deceased person’s estate. The personal representative is responsible for “wrapping up” the estate after death, a responsibility that includes the power to sue if someone else’s negligent or intentional acts may have caused the deceased person’s untimely demise. The personal representative brings the case to court on behalf of the deceased person’s spouse and/or next of kin.

In a wrongful death case based on a car accident, the family may be able to recover damages to pay the lost loved one’s final medical bills, funeral and burial expenses, lost wages, and an amount for the loss of the deceased person’s care, companionship, guidance, and emotional support. If the fatal crash involved a drunk driver, the family may also be able to seek compensation under Michigan’s dram shop law.

When a car accident takes the life of a loved one, it feels as though the world has turned upside down. At Lipton Law, our experienced Southfield car accident wrongful death attorneys are dedicated to helping families handle everything from insurance claims to courtroom trials, giving you the space you need to honor your lost loved one and to move forward after a crash. For a free and confidential consultation, call us today at (248) 557-1688.


The Most Underestimated Type of Medical Malpractice: Misdiagnosis

By Lipton Law on November 22, 2011 - No comments

When most people think of “medical malpractice,” they think of errors made during surgery, or a patient who is given the wrong medications. However, misdiagnosis can also be a form of medical malpractice -which can have serious and even life-threatening consequences for the patient.

Despite the risks, misdiagnosis is still rarely studied. A 1999 study estimated that anywhere from 44,000 to 98,000 people die in the U.S. each year as a result of medical misdiagnosis, and as many as 9 million are injured – sometimes permanently. Researchers estimate that 5 to 15 percent of patients are misdiagnosed at least once in their lives, but most do not suffer serious consequences as a result. For those who are harmed, however, the failure to diagnose properly can have life-altering consequences.

The causes of misdiagnosis are still being pinpointed, but patients can help protect themselves by keeping accurate records of their medications, allergies, and previous diagnoses, and sharing these with their doctors. Keeping careful track of symptoms can also help doctors make the right diagnosis the first time. Also, a second opinion can help patients avoid a dangerous misdiagnosis.

If you or someone you love has suffered from a wrong diagnosis, the experienced Michigan medical misdiagnosis attorneys at Lipton Law can help. We have the legal resources and real-world experience to help you piece together what happened and hold any negligent parties accountable for the damage they have caused. Call us today at (248) 557-1688 for a free and confidential consultation.


Travel Tips to Help Keep Your Thanksgiving Safe

By Lipton Law on November 18, 2011 - No comments

Thanksgiving week is one of the most heavily-traveled weeks of the year, according to the federal U.S. Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS). More people travel more miles on the days surrounding Thanksgiving than nearly any other holiday. For this reason, it’s important to keep travel safety tips in mind when hitting the road during the Thanksgiving holidays.

Keep the weather conditions in mind when you drive. If the weather or roadway is icy, snowy, foggy, or rainy, slow down and drive more carefully, keeping a larger distance between you and the vehicle in front of you. Checking the weather forecast and road conditions before you leave can help you plan for the road. Avoid using cruise control unless the roadway is clear and dry, since using cruise control on wet or icy roads can make it easier to lose control of the vehicle.

Avoid distracted driving. Set your cell phone to “silent”, or have a passenger answer it for you if it rings. Passengers can also help you read maps or directions. If you feel tired, pull over or have another licensed driver take over. Never drive after drinking or allow others to drive if they have been drinking.

Careful driving can help prevent serious accidents, but it can’t eliminate all the risks of hitting the road. If you or someone you love has been injured in a crash, the experienced Southfield auto accident lawyers at Lipton Law can help you navigate the Michigan no-fault insurance process or seek any additional forms of compensation to which you may be entitled. For a free and confidential consultation, call us today at (248) 557-1688.


Medical Malpractice During Birth May Result in Facial Nerve Palsy

By Lipton Law on November 15, 2011 - No comments

Facial nerve palsy is one condition that can be caused by a birth injury, according to the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The condition is caused by pressure on the facial nerve, also known as the seventh cranial nerve, during the birthing process. This pressure may occur naturally, but it can also be inflicted by certain birthing tools such as forceps.

Symptoms of facial nerve palsy include the inability to control the muscles of the face. Infants who have facial nerve palsy may be unable to close their eye on the affected side of the face, or may have lopsided facial expressions when crying, smiling, or grimacing. In severe cases, the child will have no movement on the affected side of the face at all; instead, these muscles will be totally paralyzed.

In some cases, facial nerve palsy goes away on its own as the body heals the injured nerve, especially if the condition is mild. More severe cases, however, may require therapy, and some cases of facial nerve palsy are permanent. Little is known about the causes or prevention of facial nerve palsy, but a difficult labor, including the use of epidural anesthesia or medications to produce stronger contractions, may be contributing factors.

Medical malpractice can cause serious and permanent injuries. If you or someone you love has been injured by a health care practitioner’s negligence, please don’t hesitate to contact the experienced Michigan medical malpractice attorneys at Lipton Law. For a free and confidential consultation, call us today at (248) 557-1688.


Wrongful Death Claims May Help Families Who Lose Loved Ones in Traffic Accidents

By Lipton Law on November 9, 2011 - No comments

In Michigan, most car accident injuries are covered by the no-fault auto insurance of those involved in the crash. When an accident causes death, however, those left behind may choose to sue anyone who caused or contributed to the fatal crash. Known as “wrongful death” claims, these cases help families seek the compensation they need after losing the care, companionship, and support of a loved one.

Michigan law allows the personal representative of a deceased person’s estate to bring a wrongful death claim on behalf of the estate, the deceased person’s spouse, or the next of kin. These claims may be combined with negligence or other claims into one case, which helps the family save time, money, and energy. The family may seek damages to pay for things like medical bills, lost wages, and funeral and burial expenses, as well as for less tangible items like the loss of the care, companionship, guidance, and emotional and moral support the lost loved one would have provided were it not for the accident.

Wrongful death claims after a traffic accident can also be brought if the person whose negligence caused the death also lost his life in the crash. In this case, the estates will meet in court, but the damages awarded, if any, still goes to the family of the wrongfully deceased person.

No amount of money can restore a lost loved one to life, but damages can help a family meet its needs after an unexpected loss. If you or someone you love has been injured or lost in a car crash, the experienced Michigan traffic accident wrongful death attorneys at Lipton Law can help. To discuss your legal rights and options, call us today at (248) 557-1688 for a free and confidential consultation.


Drunk Driving Can Permanently Alter Crash Victims’ Lives

By Lipton Law on November 7, 2011 - No comments

Michigan and other states have passed strict laws prohibiting driving under the influence of alcohol and/or other drugs (DUI). Most drivers understand that the sentence they’ll face if convicted is a heavy one. Nevertheless, too many drivers on Michigan roads choose to get behind the wheel even when they’ve had one too many. When a drunk driver causes a crash, the injuries can be serious.

In one ten-year period, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that over 266,000 U.S. residents lost their lives in drunk driving-related crashes – averaging one death about every thirty minutes. Although drunk drivers make up only about two percent of the drivers on the road at any given time, they cause approximately 50 percent of the car accidents. Drunk-driving-related car accidents cost Americans nearly $46 billion each year. Too often, it’s the others involved in the crash – the drivers and passengers who weren’t drinking at all – who pay the price.

Michigan drivers convicted of drunk driving face strict criminal penalties, which may include jail time, fines, community service, drug or alcohol treatment programs, and other requirements. These penalties “pay back” the community for the harm their drunk driving caused, but they may not adequately compensate those who were injured in a crash. The victims of a drunk driving crash may have to live with permanent injuries, the loss of a loved one, or the traumatic memories of the accident.

If you or someone you love has been injured by a drunk driver in Michigan, the experienced Southfield drunk driving victims’ attorneys at Lipton Law can help. To learn more about your legal rights and options, call us today at (248) 557-1688 for a free and confidential consultation.