January 17

Common Car Accident Injuries – Diagnosis and Treatment of Spinal Injuries

Common Car Accident Injuries – Diagnosis and Treatment of Spinal Injuries

By: Heath C. MurphyPersonal Injury

So, you have been in an automobile crash and hurt your back. The doctor schedules you for an MRI Generally, this will require an appointment at a separate location to have the MRI performed. There are several different companies in St. Petersburg that specialize in performing MRIs. Once you have the MRI, you will then return to your doctor to get the results.

After your MRI, you are likely to hear words such as bulging disc, slipped disc, herniation, protrusion, extrusion or migration. What is the difference in those terms? It is a matter of degrees of degrees and to confuse matters, even medical professionals use some of the terms interchangeably. Herniation, bulging disc, slipped disc all essentially describe the same condition. The discs in your spine, in simplistic terms, are fibrocartilage joints between each vertebra that allow for movement and act as shock absorbers. Each disc is made up of a center portion or nucleus which is surrounded by annular material. Think of a jelly doughnut. The jelly is the nucleus and the surrounding doughnut is the annulus. If the doughnut is compressed the jelly will move to the edges and out of the center where it belongs. If you have been diagnosed with herniated disc protrusion, the nucleus or jelly, if you want to stick with that visual, has pushed on the edges and has caused the annular material to expand and stretch beyond is normal position. If you are told that you have a herniation with extrusion; the jelly has begun to escape. Finally, a migration means that portions of the nucleus have completely escaped the annular material and may have even separated completely.

In the weeks following your car or motorcycle accident, your doctor, depending on the severity of your spinal injury, may elect to treat the injury with anti-inflammatory drugs, massage therapy, chiropractic care, injection therapy, and even surgery. Most people and doctors will try to avoid conventional open back surgery because it carries greater risks than the conservative treatment plans and there is no guarantee of success. Until recently, this was the only surgical option, but in some instances, endoscopic surgery has proven to be a viable option.

Have you been involved in a car or motorcycle accident or a slip and fall which you believe you may have suffered a back injury? Contact an experienced St. Petersburg personal injury attorney at Jones Law Group today. The decision to hire an experienced car crash attorney is an extremely important one. Would you hire your doctor based upon a TV or Radio Ad? An experienced and qualified personal injury attorney is every bit as important. Hire someone that understands your injuries and will provide you the customer service to which you are entitled.

If you have been involved in motorcycle or car accident, you should immediately call Jones Law Group at (727) 571-1333 during regular business hours or (727) 753-8657 on weekends or after regular business hours. We will evaluate your case for free and you will never pay us a dime unless we recover compensation for your injuries.

Jones Law Group
5622 Central Avenue
St. Pete, FL 33707

http://jlgtampabay.com/personal-injury/

January 16

The Duty Disclose Construction Defects in a Residential Real Estate Transaction

By: Bobby Jones Construction Law
ConstructionDefects
Are thinking of buying or selling a residential property? Have you ever wondered what the law requires the seller to disclose as part of the sale of the home in Florida? The answer is this: If the seller knows of a construction defect or other issue that materially affects the value of the home and which is not open an obvious to the buyer, it must be disclosed as part of the sale of the home.

Disclosure normally occurs when the real estate agent presents a contract for sale to the seller. As part of the paperwork, there is a standard disclosure form for the seller to fill out. This is the seller’s opportunity to disclose issues about the property that require disclosure. Note, however, that the buyer cannot simply turn a blind eye to open and obvious defects.

What about home improvements made by the seller that do not comply with the Florida Building Code? The Second District Court of Appeals took this issue head on in Jensen v. Bailey. The sellers hired various companies to perform significant remodel work to their home. Unfortunately, the companies failed to pull the proper permits and also failed to perform the work in accordance with the Florida Building Code. There were numerous construction defects of which the buyer was unaware until after they had purchased the home.

The buyers sued claiming that the seller should have known the construction companies they hired failed to pull the required permits. The theory was based on the legal requirement under the Florida Building Code that owners ensure that permits are pulled for the work performed. The sellers testified that they had no knowledge that the permits were not obtained and also did not know the Construction violated the Florida Building Code. The trial court accepted and believed their testimony, but nevertheless still held the sellers liable because they had a corresponding duty to ensure and to know whether permits were pulled.

The sellers appealed the trial court’s decision. The appellate court reserved the trial court and held that the seller can only be liable if it is proved that they actually knew no construction permits were pulled. The appellate court was afraid of the slippery slope of when a seller “should have known” about a defect and cautioned against the law requiring sellers to essentially warrant the home’s wellbeing.

The best way to protect oneself against such a situation is to hire a reputable home inspector who is not affiliated with a realtor or any other person with an interest in completing the sale. I would recommend a home inspector who is a licensed general contractor in the State of Florida. Not all home inspectors are licensed general contractors and possess the expertise to identify all construction defects and violations of the Florida Building Code, ASK! The goal of the inspection should not be to green light the sale, but to alert the buyer to each and every potential construction defect present in the residence.

If you need advice concerning your duties and rights as a seller or a buyer and what practical steps you should take to increase your chances of a smooth purchase or sale of a home, contact us. We are located in St. Petersburg and we can help. If you are currently being threatened with a lawsuit or currently in a lawsuit, we can also help. We have experience representing both buyers and sellers in residential and commercial real estate in relation to nondisclosure, construction defects, negligence, code violations, misrepresentation and fraud, broker and agent claims, breach of contract and rescission claims.

If you feel that you have been sold a house with construction defects, you should immediately call Jones Law Group at (727) 571-1333 during regular business hours or (727) 753-8657 on weekends or after regular business hours.

Jones Law Group
5622 Central Avenue
St. Pete, FL 33707

http://jlgtampabay.com/construction-law/

January 15

Motorcycle Accidents – An Alarming Rise in Florida Fatalities

By: Heath C. MurphyPersonal Injury

While there has been a trend in recent years showing fewer automobile accidents, the same cannot be said for motorcycle crashes. Since 2001 the number of people in Florida injured in a motorcycle accident has risen by 50%. While the number of deaths of motorcyclists involved in an accident has risen by 90%. The increase number of motorcycling deaths can be partially Florida’s repeal of the its mandatory helmet law, but the rise in accidents, as a whole, must be attributable to other factors.

The most common reason for an accident involving a car and a motorcycle is an inattentive or distracted driver that fails to see the motorcycle. Another common reason for motorcycle accidents is poor road conditions. Examples of road conditions which can cause a motorcycle crash include potholes, areas of the road which are degraded, loose stones or gravel and road construction. Known road hazards should be properly marked utilizing maintenance of traffic standards and failure to do so can render the persons responsible for the road’s maintenance liable for negligence.

With all the hazards facing motorcyclists, whether it’s the distracted driver or the road conditions, it falls upon the riders to maintain a state of hyper vigilance and protect themselves from accidents. While this is a touchy subject among riders, the statistics seem to strongly indicate that wearing a helmet saves lives and prevents traumatic brain injuries. However, studies also show that riders who wear a helmet cannot hear as well as riders who do not wear helmets. More importantly, there is a reduction in the peripheral vision motorcyclists that choose to wear helmets. Ultimately it is a personal decision for each rider to make assessing the increased risk of injury with the reduction in hearing and vision that wearing a helmet will cause.

Unfortunately, the results of a motorcycle accident can be devastating and include:

1. Death;
2. Traumatic brain injury and/or concussions;
3. Spinal cord damage and/or paralysis;
4. Disfigurement;
5. Fractured or broken bones;
6. Nerve damage and/or bikers arm;
7. Lacerations, contusions and road rash; and
8. Neck and back injuries.

Have you been involved in a motorcycle accident which you believe might not be your fault? Contact an experienced St. Petersburg personal injury attorney at The Law Offices of Bobby Jones today. The decision to hire an experienced motorcycle accident attorney is an extremely important one. Everyone has heard the horror stories of the insurance company taking advantage of the unrepresented victim. Worse yet, are the stories of the accident victims who hired a big mill law firm and were poorly represented. It is an important decision, do not base it on whether the attorney owns a motorcycle or has a catchy commercial. It is important that your motorcycle accident attorney has experience in handling motorcycle claims and an extensive knowledge of injuries and future issues faced by the injured rider.

If you have been involved in motorcycle accident, you should immediately call Jones Law Group at (727) 571-1333 during regular business hours or (727) 753-8657 on weekends or after regular business hours. We will evaluate your case for free and you will never pay us a dime unless we recover compensation for your injuries.

Jones Law Group
5622 Central Avenue
St. Pete, FL 33707

January 14

Talking While Driving – The Distraction of Talking on a Cell Phone While Driving

By: Heath C. MurphyPersonal Injury

Do you drive while talking on your cell phone? It is not illegal in Florida which makes it safe, right? Fourteen states have banned using a hand held devise while operating a motor vehicle. A total of thirty-eight states have banned novice drivers, such as those below the age of eighteen or holders of a learner’s permit, from using a hand held device while operating a motor vehicle. In my opinion, Florida is behind the curve and will ultimately follow the rest of the country and, at the very least, limit the use of hand held devices while driving a car.

After reading the statistics, I believe most people would support Florida in this endeavor. The statistics are downright scary, especially when you consider the proliferation of bluetooth devices and cars that are equipped with bluetooth. The following statistics were based upon the most recent data available:

1. Drivers who are talking on a hand held device are 4 TIMES more likely to be in an automobile accident;
2. Talking on a cell phone decreases your reaction time. It causes a twenty year old to have the reaction times of a seventy-five year old;
3. Looking for and answering a call can take your eyes off the road for up to 5 SECONDS. Your car can have travelled more than a football field in the same amount of time;
4. Teens using a hand held device while driving are 4 TIMES more likely to be involved in a traffic than adults who are using a cell phone while driving;
5. Teens riding with other teens are 5 TIMES as likely to be in a fatal car accident.

The injuries sustained by people involved in an accident in which the other driver was distracted or talking on a cell phone can be significant and commonly include the following:

1. Concussions and other traumatic brain injuries;
2. Fractured or broken bones;
3. Spinal cord damage;
4. Neck and back injuries; and
5. Lacerations and contusions which may have been caused by either the air bags or contact with the actual components of the vehicle.

Have you been involved in an auto accident which you believe might not be your fault because the other driver was distracted or talking on a cell phone? Contact an experienced St. Petersburg personal injury attorney at Jones Law Group today.

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