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Michigan Personal Injury Attorneys

Number of Deer-Vehicle Accidents in Macomb County Down from Previous Years

By Lipton Law on August 21, 2012 - No comments

For residents across the state of Michigan, the sighting of a majestic deer is a common and awe-inspiring occurrence, but this can be particularly dangerous if one of these stately creatures wanders out into a road with oncoming motorists. However, recent statistics reveal a decline in Macomb County deer-vehicle accidents, according to a report from The Voice. Data from MichiganTrafficFacts.org shows that there were a total of 543 deer-car collisions in 2011, a significant decrease from the 643 crashes in 2010 and 648 in 2009. Of this 2011 total, 41 were in Chesterfield Township and seven were in New Baltimore, which is also a decline from the 60 and eight in these towns in 2010, respectively.

MI Deer Car CrashA deer and elk specialist with the Michigan Department of Natural Resources explains that there are several reasons the number of deer-vehicle accidents could be down, including a stabilization of the deer population in southern Michigan. He also notes that in some areas, the deer population is also declining. In addition, the hot and dry weather is keeping water out of ditches, which means deer may be in areas where there are deeper ditches, such as County Line Road and 25 Mile Road in New Baltimore. Another possible reason may be the fewer amount of motorists on the road due to economic conditions, which also reduces the risk of crashes.

In the event you encounter a deer while driving, an ABC 10 report suggests never swerving to avoid a deer, even though it is a natural reaction. More damage and injury is at stake when you swerve to avoid impact with the deer as the risk increases for hitting oncoming traffic, a tree, a mailbox, ditch, or other dangerous object. A driver should take his or her foot off the gas and keep a straight course so as to reduce damage and avoid higher insurance rates.

At Lipton Law, our auto accident lawyers in Macomb County understand that car crashes can be caused by many factors, but the devastation an accident can cause is common in each crash. If you have been involved in a traffic accident caused by the negligence of another motorist, our skilled legal team can obtain the compensation you need to recover after a crash. To speak with us regarding your accident claim, please call (248) 557-1688.

 

MI Medical Malpractice Reform Bills: Giving Bad Doctors Immunity?

By Lipton Law on August 17, 2012 - No comments

MI Med Malpractice BillA report by MLive.com examines the recent controversy over Senate Bills 1115-1118, which focuses on changes to medical malpractice laws in Michigan. An assembly held in July prompted 300 people to turn out for testimony regarding the proposed legislation changes, and much of the debate focused on Senate Bill 1116.

This Bill states that a healthcare professional or facility would not be liable if the physician acted with “reasonable and good-faith belief” that his or her conduct was “well-founded in medicine and in the patient’s best interests.” Another controversial bill is 1115, which would reduce the amount of damages that can be awarded to medical malpractice victim.

Supporters of these medical malpractice reform bills, which include insurers and doctors, assert that the reform would improve access to healthcare and address inequities in liability statutes. Supporters feel creating a more “welcoming” environment would help address the looming physician shortage in MI as many doctors are reaching retirement age. However, personal injury lawyers, their clients, and medical malpractice victims feel the bills would make it more difficult to win medical malpractice cases and basically give bad doctors immunity from their misdoings.

At press time, the Senate Insurance Committee had not voted on the reform bills and it may not be discussed until the new session resumes.

For victims of medical malpractice, holding negligent parties responsible and obtaining compensation for their injuries can be difficult without proper legal representation. The Macomb County medical malpractice attorneys at Lipton Law aim to stay abreast of changes in medical malpractice laws and have the knowledge and skills needed to help you get winning results in your case. For a complimentary consultation on your claim, please call (248) 557-1688.

 

Why is Social Security Disability Insurance Enrollment Increasing?

By Lipton Law on August 13, 2012 - No comments

Last week we discussed a study conducted by the Congressional Budget Office as reported by The Huffington Post on the rise in SSDI enrollment. The study lays out options for fixing the shortfalls in disability funding, including raising taxes and cutting benefits.

The following is some additional and more specific information on the causes for this increase in SSDI enrollment:

  • A change in the law during the Regan administration allowed more people with musculoskeletal problems and mental disabilities to qualify, resulting in an increase in enrollment.
  • More women have entered the workforce since the 1970s, which boosted the working population and generated a larger pool of workers who may become disabled.
  • The poor economy has helped “swell the rolls of America’s disabled,” from an estimated 7.4 million in 2008 to 8.6 million in 2011. When jobs are scarce, employment opportunities for disabled workers may be especially limited.

For disabled individuals, Social Security Disability Insurance benefits can be of great help, providing vital financial assistance at a time when they may be unable to work and provide for themselves or their family. Unfortunately, the process of applying, as well as appealing if your initial request was denied, can be stressful and overwhelming. For assistance with your disability claim, contact a Social Security Disability Insurance lawyer in Michigan at Lipton Law. We have the knowledge and skills needed to get you the benefits you’re entitled to. Call (248) 557-1688 to discuss your claim.

 

New Study Finds Enrollment in Social Security Disability Insurance is Rising

By Lipton Law on August 9, 2012 - No comments

According to a study conducted by the Congressional Budget Office, enrollment is rising for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI). As reported by The Huffington Post, the new report says the rise in America’s ranks of disabled to 8.3 million in 2011 stems from an aging population, changes in the law in the 1980s, a surge in women workers, and an ailing economy in which disabled individuals can’t find jobs.

Southfield Social Security Disability ClaimThe study revealed that the biggest jumps in the disabled population came from aging Baby Boomers, finding that from 1996 to 2009 “the share of disabled worker benefits awarded to older workers (ages 45 and older) rose from 67 percent to 76 percent.” The share of benefits to younger workers between the ages of 25 to 44, however, fell from 31 percent to 22 percent.

Overall, in the aftermath of the recent recession, SSDI benefits reached a historic high, surpassing 2.9 million in the 2010 calendar year. The report was requested by an Alabama senator who cited estimates that the disability program would run out of money in 2016 if changes aren’t made.

Individuals coping with a disability face serious financial, physical, and emotional challenges. Not being able to work because of a disability leaves a person with few options for obtaining proper medical care and providing for themselves and their family. With SSDI enrollment increasing, ensuring that your application for benefits is properly filled out and that you’ve included the correct medical evidence is essential. Getting disability benefits isn’t a competition, but it may feel like one if your application is missing key information.

For additional information on this study and the causes for this increase in SSDI enrollment, please visit our blog next week for Part Two in this blog series.

 

Safety Tips to Avoid a Dangerous Pedestrian Accident in Flint, MI

By Lipton Law on August 7, 2012 - No comments

MI Pedestrian Auto AccidentResidents of Flint, MI have a many ways to travel and commute and get where they need to go; however, walking is certainly a popular option as it is affordable, health conscious, and environmentally friendly. Those who choose to travel on two feet, though, should be aware of the unique hazards that pedestrians face in order to stay safe on the roads of Flint. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 4,092 pedestrians were killed and approximately 59,000 were injured in traffic accidents in 2009. On average, a pedestrian was killed every two hours and injured every nine minutes in a traffic accident.

These alarming statistics show that the safety of walkers is not guaranteed, so in order to avoid a serious pedestrian accident, WalkingInfo.org offers the following pedestrian safety tips:

  1. Make yourself visible to drivers: Pedestrians should wear bright or light colored clothing to increase visibility. Also, carrying a flashlight at night and crossing in well-lit areas only after the sun sets can help ensure motorists see you.
  2. Be alert and avoid dangerous behaviors: When on two feet, travel distraction-free by not wearing headphones or using your cell phone, which will keep you alert and aware of oncoming hazards. Pedestrians should also look before crossing the road and make eye contact with drivers to make sure they see you, as well as walk sober to decrease the possibility of an accident.
  3. Stay cautious at crossings: Pedestrians should obey traffic signals and cross at marked crosswalks or intersections, if possible. Before crossing, look across all lanes to make sure it is clear before proceeding, and watch out for turning vehicles that may not see you until it is too late.

The Flint personal injury lawyers of Lipton Law encourage people across the state of Michigan to be safe, alert, and distraction-free when walking, running, or jogging on the open roads. However, even the safest pedestrian cannot prevent an accident when a motorist is driving in a negligent manner. If you have been injured by the negligence of another party, call our experienced legal team at (248) 557-1688 to discuss your case.

 

Oakland County Law Enforcement Focus on Traffic Accidents, Aim for ‘Zero Deaths’

By Lipton Law on July 26, 2012 - No comments

Oakland County Police Auto AccidentThe leader of the Traffic Improvement Association of Michigan (TIA) states that the roads in Oakland County are among the least fatal in the world, but law enforcement wants to reduce traffic fatalities even further, aiming for “zero deaths.” The total amount of fatal Oakland County crashes increased from 59 in 2010 to 67 in 2011, which is a slight increase, but law enforcement are calling for “more attentive driving, less use of cell phones, and more law enforcement officers on the road” in order to prevent these deaths from occurring at all.

The fatality rate for Oakland County was 0.54 deaths per 100 million vehicle miles traveled, which is low compared to the state of Michigan that has a rate of 0.94 deaths. The traffic fatality rates for other counties in southeast Michigan are as follows:

  • Livingston County – 0.81
  • Wayne County – 0.83
  • Washtenaw County – 0.95
  • Macomb County – 0.76

The executive director for the Auburn Hills-based TIA is concerned that traffic fatalities disproportionately affect young drivers, noting that in the U.S. “traffic crashes are the leading causes of death for teens and young adults ages 15 to 20.” Though he is concerned about teen and young adult drivers, he is urging all motorists in Oakland County and across Michigan to drive distraction-free and focus on the road.

The director is also calling for increased law enforcement to prevent traffic accidents, and is reaching out to local governments in the Metro Detroit area to encourage them to not cut law enforcement.

Law enforcement and all drivers can participate in the effort to reduce traffic-related fatalities, but unfortunately, not all accidents can be prevented. If you have lost a loved one in an accident, contact a traffic accident wrongful death lawyer in Oakland County at Lipton Law. The abrupt loss of a loved one is devastating, and our legal team will work diligently to obtain the compensation you need to deal with financial matters so you and your family can focus on healing. Call (248) 557-1688 to see how we can assist you during this difficult time.

 

Understanding Michigan Rollover Accidents

By Lipton Law on July 24, 2012 - No comments

Michigan Rollover Crash InjuryAuto accidents of any kind have the potential to cause severe damage and serious injuries to the occupants of the vehicles involved; however, one of the more dangerous types of crashes is a rollover accident, which is one of the deadliest risks for SUV, minivan, and truck occupants.

According to data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), more than 280,000 rollover crashes occur annually in the U.S., ultimately claiming more than 10,000 lives. Because of the seriousness of these types of crashes, it is imperative motorists in Michigan understand why they happen in order to try and prevent them.

Rollover Accident Causes

Rollover accidents are directly related to a vehicle’s stability in turns, which is influenced by the relationship between the center of gravity and the track width (the distance between the left and right wheels). A high center of gravity and narrow track width may make a vehicle unstable in fast turns or acute changes in direction, which can increase the odds it will tip over. This particular problem is more pronounced in four-wheel-drive SUVs and pickup trucks, both of which have a higher ground clearance for off-road driving.

Rollover Risk Rating System

To help motorists select safe vehicles and aid the NHTSA in predicting which vehicles are very likely to overturn, the rollover rating system was introduced by the NHTSA in 2001. The rollover ratings system, based on a five star ratings system, is based on an engineering analysis of a vehicle’s center of gravity and the width between the front tires. For confirmation, these results are then compared with police accident reports. In the system, five stars equals a rollover risk of less than 10 percent, and one star indicates a rollover risk of 40 percent or more.

Compensation to Recover After a Rollover Accident

Rollover accidents are extremely dangerous and put the safety of the vehicle’s occupants at risk, and being a safe and cautious driver is not always enough to prevent a crash. The rollover accident lawyers in Oakland County of Lipton Law understand how difficult coping with the aftermath of any accident can be and are committed to obtaining compensation for accident victims so that they can focus on recovery. If you feel your rollover accident was caused by another’s negligence, call us to discuss your case at (248) 557-1688.

 

MI Personal Injury Lawyers Marc Lipton and Jody Lipton of Lipton Law Co-Hosted Supreme Challenge Fundraiser 2012

By Lipton Law on July 20, 2012 - No comments

The Supreme Challenge Fundraiser 2012 is a fundraising event created to help restore fairness and justice to the Michigan Supreme Court. The event was held on July 12 and was co-hosted by Marc Lipton and Jody Lipton of the Michigan personal injury law firm Lipton Law and Laura Eisenberg of the family law firm Alexander, Eisenberg & Spilman. Individuals in attendance were asked to donate to support three exceptional candidates for the Michigan Supreme Court: Judge Sheila Johnson, Professor Bridget Mary McCormack, and Judge Connie Marie Kelly. Each of these outstanding candidates is endorsed by the Michigan Democratic Party.

The decisions made by the Michigan Supreme Court significantly impact the lives of men, women, and families across the state of Michigan. However, unfortunately more than 80 percent of the current decisions of the court have benefited banks, insurance companies, special interest groups, and polluters at the expense of the state’s middle class families.

The Supreme Challenge Fundraiser 2012 was held not only to raise money for Supreme Court candidates who will undoubtedly be catalysts for positive change, but also to emphasize the significance of having women’s voices heard in government. The Supreme Challenge Fundraiser event also emphasized the ways in which justice and equity can be preserved in the Michigan Supreme Court and why this is essential for the people of Michigan as well as the future of the state.

At Lipton Law, our personal injury attorneys are dedicated to helping the residents of Michigan who have been injured as a result of another’s negligence obtain the compensation they need to recover and rebuild their lives. Our professional experience, knowledge, and skills have allowed us to help numerous injury accident victims over the years, and we aim to continue our commitment to providing exceptional legal counsel to the people Michigan in the years to come. For a complimentary consultation, call (248) 557-1688 today.

 

What is a Dangerous Roadway in Michigan?

By Lipton Law on July 19, 2012 - No comments

MI Road DangersWith the thousands of commuters on the road on any given day in Michigan, the chances of a driver being involved in an auto accident are certainly increased. There are a number of reasons a Michigan auto accident can happen, including driver negligence and defective auto parts, but some elements are out of a motorist’s control and may be a significant factor in why a collision occurs.

A dangerous roadway could be found on any street or highway, and an improperly maintained or designed roadway can be unsafe and risky for MI motorists, motorcyclists, bicyclists, and any other person on the open road.

Local and state governments are responsible for appropriately maintaining the roadways, and the safety of those on the road may be put in jeopardy if hazards and unsafe conditions exist. The following are some common examples of what may make a roadway dangerous in Michigan:

  • Poor road design, such as narrow lanes or excessive wear and tear;
  • Inadequate lighting, which can make seeing things like road signs or pedestrians difficult to see;
  • Debris in the road, which can make a drive potentially perilous;
  • Pavement hazards, such as potholes, loose gravel, or uneven pavement;
  • Road construction, which can cause debris in the road, or close lanes without sufficient warning for drivers; and
  • Traffic signals and signs, which can cause a collision if signals are not working properly or signs are not visible to drivers.

Being involved in a motor vehicle accident can leave a driver and his or her passengers with very serious injuries, which may result in expensive medical care, costly vehicle repair, and other accident-related costs. Seeking compensation from the negligent parties that caused your collision is very important and can help get you on the road to recovery. If a hazardous roadway caused your auto accident, contact an Oakland County dangerous roadways lawyer at Lipton law to discuss your legal options. Schedule your free consultation by calling (248) 557-1688.

 

Michigan Appeals Court Upholds Decision in Toddler Wrongful Death Case

By Lipton Law on July 12, 2012 - No comments

According to a MonroeNews.com report, the Michigan Court of Appeals has upheld the decision made in a wrongful death case involving a toddler. In 2006, a 17-month-old girl was tragically beaten to death and a Monroe woman, reportedly the girlfriend of the young child’s father at the time, was convicted of the toddler’s murder and sentenced to life in prison. In the years following the child’s death, the mother filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the Monroe County Child Protective Services claiming the agency did not do enough to protect the toddler from the woman convicted of the murder.

The final decision in the MI wrongful death case was that the government agency is immune from being sued as the court determined that, although the agency’s conduct “rose to the level of gross negligence,” it was not the direct cause of the child’s death. The case was appealed, but the Michigan Court of Appeals supported the original decision of the court in a ruling made in June. The appellate court ruling states that the parents of the young girl could have done more to keep the toddler away from the woman, particularly considering there were two previous incidents of assault that were documented.

Following the trial, the woman convicted of first-degree murder for the death of the toddler was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole. Now 33-years-old, the woman remains imprisoned at the Ypsilanti’s Huron Valley Correctional Facility. In addition to supporting the original ruling of the court, the Court of Appeals also ruled that no costs are to be awarded to either party in the case.

The sudden loss of a loved one, especially a young child, can be incredibly devastating for a family, who will likely be left with more questions than answers regarding the fatal incident. If you feel the death of your loved one was caused by the negligence of another party, the Southfield wrongful death attorneys at Lipton Law can help you determine what happened and hold negligent parties responsible. To see how we can assist you during this difficult time, please call (248) 557-1688 for a complimentary consultation.