Personal Injuries Associated with the Holiday Season
Throughout California and beyond, people are gearing up for an amazing holiday season with friends and loved ones. Unfortunately, the seasonal merriment will be interrupted by a serious personal injury for many individuals. Such injuries may result in significant medical bills, lost income as you take time to recuperate and other expenses. When an injury accident is caused by the negligent or intentional actions of another person, a personal injury claim may be filed against that person. A claim may ultimately result in a financial award to compensate you for related expenses you incurred. What should you know about personal injuries this season?
Common Holiday Season Injuries
During the holidays, your statistical risk of being involved in a personal injury accident increases. Consider that you may be out and about more frequently and that you may do certain risky activities that you do not normally do. Did you know that someone loses their life in a car accident in the U.S. every 13 seconds? Injuries and fatalities related to car accidents increase during the cold weather season. There may be several reasons for this. For example, many people drive more frequently this season to enjoy festivities with friends and family, to go shopping and to venture out of town to create new family memories. The weather is generally worse this time of year. In addition, the days are shorter, so you may spend more time driving at night when visibility is reduced. People are busier this season, so they may be in a bigger rush on the roads. Unfortunately, drunk driving may increase during the holiday season as well. If you have been involved in a car accident that was caused by the carelessness or negligence of another person, your next step should be to schedule a consultation with a personal injury attorney.
Property-related injuries also increase during the holiday season. While you may be more likely to be injured on your own property, such as when you are hanging outdoor lights on the house, you may also be at a greater risk of injury at someone else’s house. For example, you may have been helping a neighbor with his or her lights when you fell off the ladder. Perhaps you dropped by to share festive cookies with a friend, and you slipped on a snowy surface that was not properly cleared. These are only some of the many types of premises injuries that can cause broken bones, sprains, head injuries, back injuries and more.
There are many other types of negligent events that can lead to personal injuries. For example, you could receive an electrical shock when you are helping a friend decorate his or her tree. Such an event could happen at work while you set up the space for the holidays. In some cases, these events may result in a fire. A fire could result in burns, smoke insulation and other issues that may have otherwise been preventable.
Another common injury during the season is a back injury. This could result from slipping and falling, lifting boxes that are too heavy, carrying heavy bags at the airport and more. Back injuries can cause extreme pain and suffering, and they may take weeks to recover from. While not all back injuries are the result of another person’s actions or inactions, many of them are.
With so many people hustling around at local stores throughout the season, you may easily bump elbows with at least a few people while you are shopping. Unfortunately, some people endure far more devastating injuries than a few bumps and bruises. For example, a shopper could slip on a wet floor or an icy entryway. Shoppers may be injured when a rack falls on them or during a wide range of other situations. When such events happen, the store may be liable because it failed to provide a safe shopping experience.
Another type of holiday season injury is an injury sustained while opening a gift. Lacerations may be among the most common types of product-related injuries. Depending on the nature of the event, the gift-giver may have some responsibility because of how the gift was wrapped. In other cases, the manufacturer may be responsible because of issues related to the product’s packaging. Keep in mind that there may also be issues with the products themselves. If a product’s design resulted in an injury, the manufacturer may be held liable through a personal injury claim.
Preventing a Personal Injury This Season
While there is legal recourse available to you if you are injured this season by another person’s or party’s inactions or actions, you understandably want to avoid being involved in an accident altogether. What can you do to prevent personal injuries this season?
Because so many injuries during these months are sustained on the road, it makes sense to practice safe driving habits throughout the holidays. For example, you can reduce your speed slightly, and allow more room between you and the vehicle in front of when you are driving. When possible, try to drive during daylight hours, and stay off roads during inclement weather conditions. In addition, do your part to keep distractions, such as your phone, to a minimum.
Regardless of whether you are shopping, visiting a friend’s house or doing something else this season, always identify possible risks related to the event. Then, do your part to avoid injuries. Observe your surroundings carefully, and remain vigilant. If you notice something concerning, avoid it. In addition, tell others about the hazard to help them stay as safe as possible. For example, if you see a wet spot on the floor while shopping, notify an employee about the hazard.
From fire hazards when starting a fire in the fireplace to slippery conditions on snow and ice, the dangers that you may be exposed to throughout the holiday can be significant. More than that, the pain and financial impacts of a related injury can be severe. Because it is always best to avoid an accident rather than to deal with the fallout from an accident, it is important to do your part to stay safe this winter.
What to Do If You Have a Personal Injury Claim
During the holidays, something as simple as walking in a store or driving down the road can be more dangerous than it may be during other times of the year. The impacts of sustained injuries may be far-reaching and may be felt well beyond the end of the season. While you may not be able to ease the pain that your injuries cause, you could avoid unnecessary financial stress related to medical bills, lost income and more.
If you have been injured because of someone else’s negligence or because of their intentional actions, you may be able to file a personal injury case in California. Before contacting a lawyer, be sure to document all of the injuries and expenses. For example, visit a doctor, and obtain a copy of your medical records to have proof of sustained injuries and treatments.
Then, file a claim as soon as possible. Often, people contact a personal injury attorney while they are still being treated for their injuries. This is so that the case can be filed before the statute of limitations expires. Keep in mind that a claim may be filed against an individual, a company or even an insurance provider. In some cases, multiple parties will be named as the defendant in this type of case.
The first step in the claims process is a legal consultation. A legal consultation is your time to interview the lawyer and to get firm details about the strength of your case. Your attorney will guide you through the entire legal process. He or she will also assist you in valuing your claim. You understandably do not want to leave money on the table when you are dealing with such extensive expenses and ramifications.
Be aware that you do not have to choose the first attorney who you consult with. It is important to focus on things like a lawyer’s experience with similar cases and your rapport with the individual. This is because a personal injury case can drag on for months. You need to be able to work closely with your attorney throughout the case.
Contact a Personal Injury Attorney Today
At JT Legal Group, we are the California firm to call for assistance when you need a personal injury attorney. Our skilled legal team understands the critical nature of your case, and we will support your fight for justice with a fair resolution of your personal injury claim. Regardless of the type of injury that you have sustained, we want to learn more about the circumstances. Through a free initial legal consultation, we can help you to determine the strength of your case so that you can decide how to proceed. Contact JT Legal Group today to schedule your no-obligation legal consultation with our team.