Articles Posted in Uncategorized

All drivers in the State of Indiana are required to purchase some combination of auto insurance as set by state lawmakers, currently a minimum of 25/50/10 ($25,000 per person/$50,000 per crash bodily injury liability and $10,000 for property damage). That 25/50 coverage isn’t for the policy holder. It’s to cover damages caused by the insured’s negligence (because Indiana is an at-fault and not a no-fault state). And although Indiana doesn’t require drivers to buy UIM crash insurance (underinsured motorist coverage) in case an at-fault driver’s policy isn’t sufficient to cover the damages, IN Code 27-7-5-2 does mandate that auto insurers offer every policy standard with it and insured must sign a written waiver to decline. Munster car accident attorneys know the law is also clear that UIM limits are never to exceed the limit of bodily injury liability coverage.

A question recently before the Indiana Court of Appeals was whether a UIM insurer was legally barred for selling a policy with UIM coverage in amounts less than bodily injury liability coverage. Could a policy be invalidated on that basis?

The court answered no in Troy Lee v. Liberty Mutual Fire Insurance Companydisagreeing with the plaintiff truck driver who was injured in an on-the-job crash that the amounts had to be the same. Continue reading

The AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety reports that about 70 percent of all residents who are over the age of 64 are taking at least five medications every day, which can negatively affect their driving habits. These side effects can produce deadly results.Medications, prescriptions and over-the-counter drugs come with a ton of warnings about their side effects. Some of these side effects include drowsiness and other risks that are associated with driving. Our Highland accident lawyers understand that many of these drivers have no clue about the side effects — let alone how their drugs may be interacting with one another. Even with the list of side effects available on these medicines, some can have a totally different affect when combined with other drugs. That’s why it’s important for you to get information regarding you prescriptions from a specialist.

Popular medications that are known to impact driving:



-Cough medicines


-Sleep medicines

-Narcotic pain pills


Most of us have taken some of these at one time or another. But how many of us knew how they would impact our driving abilities? That’s why officials with AAA have created the “Roadwise Rx” tool. It’s an online program that allows you to enter in the medications and the prescriptions that you’re currently taking. The program offers you personalized feedback regarding these side effects.

“With medical conditions typically on the rise as people age, and treatment often dependent on medicinal interventions, there was a critical need to develop a tool to help older drivers understand the safety risk,” said Peter Kissinger the president of AAA.

As we age, our abilities to drive age as well. When you throw medications into the mix, many older adults are at increased risk for an accident and aren’t even aware of it.

It’s important that we’re cognizant of all of the things that can affect our driving. This not only includes the effects of medications, but the effects of sleepiness, anger, distractions and alcohol as well. Knowledge is key in preventing car accidents. Take a look at your loved ones. Are any of them at serious risks for a car accident? This is especially relevant to our elderly drivers.

It’s an issue of increasing concern. By 2020, there are expected to be many more elderly drivers on the road. Officials with AAA estimate that one out of every six people in the country will be 65 years old or older by that time. Baby boomers are also expected to be hanging on to their driver’s licenses longer than their parents.

If you have an elderly loved one, check in on them. Talk with them about their prescriptions and the effects that they might be having on their driving abilities. Go with them to talk to a physician or a doctor or visit the Roadwise Rx website with them.

Being proactive can make a real difference as we head into the busy holiday travel season!
Continue reading

Indiana is the home of this year’s big game — Super Bowl XLVI. Football fans from across the country will be flocking. Unfortunately, this is likely to mean increased risks for drunk driving car accidents in Indianapolis. To help to combat these dangers, the Indiana Governor’s Council on Dangerous Driving will be funding even more drunk driving enforcement efforts on Super Bowl Sunday.Officers from around the state will be on the hunt for drunk drivers before, during and after the big game, which starts at 6:30 p.m. This year’s face off will be between the New York Giants and the New England Patriots. Some areas, like Porter County, are even offering rewards to anyone who reports a drunk driver that result in an arrest.

Our Indianapolis drunk driving car accident lawyers understand that almost 350 million people are expected to gather in front of a TV to watch this Sunday’s showdown between the Giants and the Patriots. While the game starts at 6:30 p.m., you’re urged to have your night planned out before then. Super Bowl Sunday is one of the deadliest days on roadways across the U.S. It’s estimated that more than half of all fatal car accidents that happen on this football Sunday are alcohol-related. The big game Sunday was recently ranked in second place as the deadliest day of the year, behind New Year’s Day.

Our personal injury lawyers and GEICO are here to remind you to plan your plays wisely to avoid a DUI arrest or a potentially fatal accident. The Insurance Information Institute (I.I.I.) reports that in 2010, nearly one out of every three fatal car accidents involved a drunk driver. The same statistics report that roughly 48 percent of all fatal accidents that occur on Super Bowl Sunday are alcohol-related.

Tips to Avoid Drunk Driving, from GEICO:

-Be sure you’ve got a designated driver on your team. Make sure they know who they are before the party begins and that they’ve agreed to drunk ZERO alcoholic-beverages.

-Eat plenty of food. Food will help you from over-drinking.

-Bring phone numbers to taxi companies just in case. You never know if you, a friend or another fan may need the assistance.

-Remember that you can be held liable if someone at your Super Bowl party is served too much alcohol and ends up getting into an accident on their way home.

-Watch how much you drink. You want to pace yourself.

-If you’re designated driver bails, call a sober friend or family member, get a cab, stay in a hotel or crash at a friend’s house. Whatever you do, don’t drive if you’ve been drinking.

-Buckle up! Drinking or not, your best defense is a seat belt when you’re in a traffic accident.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that midnight to 3:00 a.m. is the deadliest time to be on our roadways. Once the game is over, you’re urged to head home swiftly. The more time you spend on our roadways, the greater your chances are for getting into an accident.

Remember, if you think you’ve spotted a drunk driver on our roadways on Super Bowl Sunday or on any day of the yeas, contact local authorities. Your report could help to save a life.
Continue reading

“Changing driver behaviors is not rocket science … it’s harder,” says Peter Kissinger, AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety President and CEO.

What he’s talking about is the attitude of drivers. Motorists across the county have what AAA calls the “do as I say, not as I do” attitude, meaning drivers feel that they are exempt from all of the safe driving habits that every motorist should be following. For this reason, car accidents in Indiana and elsewhere continue to plague roadways.Our Indianapolis car accident attorneys understand that most drivers in the U.S. say that they would like to have safer roadways and that they support enforcement efforts to make that a reality. Still, with more laws on the books and more officers on the roadways, drivers refuse to give up their own dangerous driving habits, while expecting that others will give up theirs. Our roadways are filled with these hypocritical drivers, the ones who think others should “do as I say, not as I do.”

In 2011, there were nearly 32,900 lives lost because of car accidents in the U.S. While this is the lowest number of fatalities recorded in 60 years, it still illustrates that roadway safety has a long way to go. According to AAA, someone dies in a car accident in the U.S. every 16 minutes.

AAA recently conducted a survey to get into the minds of drivers. The findings were alarming and illustrated that drivers exercised very little personal responsibility for roadway safety.

The Traffic Safety Culture Index concluded that:

-More than 85 percent of surveyed drivers said that it was unacceptable for a driver to not wear a seat belt, but about a quarter of drivers admitted that they were guilty of the dangerous habit.

-A majority of drivers felt it was unsafe for a driver to travel more than 10 miles per hour over the speed limit on a residential road, but still most of the surveyed drivers admitted that they had done it at least once in the last 30 days.

-More than three quarters of drivers said that they felt that it was unacceptable to get behind the wheel of a motor vehicle after driving, but more than 10 percent of drivers admitted that they were guilty of tipsy driving at least once over the last month.

-More than 90 percent of drivers think that it is dangerous to text message while driving. Despite the fears, nearly 40 percent admitted to sending and receiving texts behind the wheel at least once in the last 30 days.

-More than 65 percent of those who were surveyed said that talking on a cell phone behind the wheel of a motor vehicle was pretty dangerous, but there were more than 30 percent of drivers who said that they’re doing it on a regular basis.

-Speeding was another action that most drivers frowned upon, yet a good portion of drivers admitted that they were in fact guilty of it.

-A good portion of drivers disapprove of drowsy driving, more than 95 percent of to exact. Still, about a third of all drivers said that they’ve been drowsy at the wheel at least once in the last 30 days.

What this study truly illustrates is that, despite all of the safe driving desires of Americans, a majority of drivers still admit to engaging in some of the most dangerous driving habits. AAA and our Indiana car accident lawyers ask that drivers start exercising their safe driving ideals instead of simply relying on others to act responsibly behind the wheel.
Continue reading

Law and Order, Perry Mason, Judd for the Defense, the Defenders, Boston Legal, The Verdict, LA Law, State of California v. O.J. Simpson, State of Florida v. Casey Anthony, United States Government v. Rod Blagojevich and every other trial, movie or television portrayal of trials have one thing in common, every witness must swear under oath to tell the truth.

Indiana Rules of Evidence Rule 603 concerns oath or affirmation and states as follow:
Rule 603. Oath or Affirmation
Before testifying, every witness shall swear or affirm to testify to the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. The mode of administering an oath or affirmation shall be such as is most consistent with, and binding upon the conscience of the person to whom the oath is administered.

The plaintiff in Raymond Flores v. Juan P. Rocha Gutierrez learned the hard way that truth and disclosure are important throughout the case and specifically when providing information to a treating physician. In that case, the plaintiff was actually fortunate enough to have obtained a default against the Defendant concerning liability, so the Plaintiff was only required to present evidence that his injuries and damages probably were caused by the actions of the defendant.

Mr. Flores had suffered a neck and back injury, previously in 1998. According to his doctor, these problems had resolved by 2001. In December of 2007. he was involved in an automobile accident which was the subject of this lawsuit. Between December of 2007 and July of 2008, he saw his treating physician two or three times and a pain management specialist. In January of 2010, he was injured at work. He next saw the doctor in March of 2010. He did not mention the injury at work, even though a workers compensation claim was pending. During the discovery process he had denied any prior back or neck injuries. On direct examination, the doctor indicated that the patient’s current back and neck problems were due to the 2007 vehicle accident.
During cross examination at trial, the physician specifically testified that the fact of a fall would be relevant to his diagnosis, that he had been unaware of Flores’s January 2010 fall when reaching his diagnosis, and that his assessment of Flores was based, at least in part, upon the patient’s representations.

In this instance, the plaintiff placed his physician in a very difficult situation as the doctor did not have all of the facts about his patient’s condition and history at the time of testifying. The jury chose to not give any damages, so although plaintiff may have suffered injury, he received absolutely nothing for his lost wages, pain and suffering, disability and medical expenses. The jury’s verdict was quite possibly due to his lack of candor in failing provide full and truthful disclosure during discovery as well as his withholding of injury information to his physician despite the fact that he had filed a workers compensation claim.

On another note, the court chose to allow photographs depicting a lack of significant property damage from the collision without any expert testimony stating whether the lack of property damage was an indication that the plaintiff was not injured. This is a terrible blow to the plaintiff’s bar and to accident victims as it is pretty common knowledge that even a sneeze can cause a disk injury under certain circumstances. There will now be an increased burden on injury victims of low impact collisions to prove their losses and to obtain compensation.
Continue reading

With over 4 million dog bites each year, and the majority resulting in the requirement of medical attention, dog bite prevention tactics can be helpful.

Aggressive dogs are considered aggressive when they growl, bark, or lunge forward. There are also specific cases when dogs tend to be more aggressive, including:

• Some dogs become aggressive to protect their property or dog owner.

Mass transit vehicle accidents fall into a different category when compared to auto accidents. From school busses, to municipal transport, governmental mass transit systems, and private mass transport, the laws protecting the rights of victims in mass transit accidents depends, in part, on the type of transportation and the respective insurance coverage.

Obviously, there are more risks involved with transporting a large number of passengers. In terms of liability for mass transit accidents, governmental laws offer immunity. In some cases, the degree of liability varies as well.  State statutes typically govern the laws regarding mass transit accidents. This is why it is extremely important to seek out the advice of a personal injury attorney who is familiar with the laws of mass transit. He or she will investigate your case to determine the validity of your claim in the eyes of the law. Once the preliminary investigation, called the discovery period, is complete, a lawsuit may be filed against suspected liable parties.

Liable parties may include other vehicles involved in the accident, property that created an obstacle and caused the accident, or any other variable that was a factor in the mass transit accident. In the end, there may be limits to liability, but appropriate compensation to ease the burden from suffering following an accident can be comforting with the assistance of a personal injury attorney.

Proton Pump Inhibitors, on a positive note, may allow people to reduce the risk of more serious medical conditions when acid in the stomach creates symptoms that may be more subtle than the consequence of being left untreated. People with erosive esophagitis, GERD, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug-induced ulcers, gastro esophageal reflux disease and small intestine ulcers may find relief using Proton Pump Inhibitors. Yet, the risk also has to weigh against the advantages when it comes to the use of drugs. Some people who have used Proton Pump Inhibitors for up to a year have developed osteoporosis and bone fractures. In fact, recent study demonstrates that long term use is associated with an increased risk of osteoporosis and bone fractures.

Physicians who prescribe Proton Pump Inhibitors closely monitor patients when they are prescribed a Proton Pump Inhibitor. Accordingly, physicians request that patients check in to let the physician know if the medication is working. Physicians may also request the patient return of the office for follow up evaluation after being on the medication for a week or so. Physicians may also prescribe other diagnostic tests to identify any other possible treatment plans that may be an adjunct to treatment or an alternative to treatment. Studies seem to indicate the risk is reduced when the medication is not used for more than 14 days, three times a year.

In essence, it’s wise to be certain you are aware of medication risks. It may also be important for you to know that medications that are less safe and less effective than alternatives are not meant to be approved by the Food and Drug Administration.

Illinois has recently become the next state to embrace sales tax for retailers on the Internet. There are several other states in America that have also initiated sales taxation for Internet retailers based in their state. Over a year ago, Texas State billed Amazon for $269 million in back sales taxes due to the fact that the warehouse was located in Texas. Since then, several states have adopted the sales taxation for Internet retailers. Following receipt of the $289 million bill from the state of Texas, Amazon closed the warehouse in Texas.

Now this this form of Internet taxation has one become known as the Amazon Tax. Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn signed the legislation to generate cash flow from state sales taxes collections on the Internet. This law applies to online companies based out of Illinois, while conducting business on websites

  • The Tax Foundation has not seen evidence to suggest that this type of taxation will generate substantial revenue for individual states.

Garden of Life, LLC. distributes several products that have not been linked to a recall. However, the company recently voluntarily recalled its Vitamin Code Raw Vitamin C Dietary Supplement product because it may contain undeclared soy proteins that some people may be allergic to. The FDA has reported that less than 0.2% of children and adults are sensitive to soy, but for those who are allergic the risk may be great.

People with allergies to soy may experience an upset stomach, abdominal pain and in rare cases a serious allergic reaction that may be life threatening.

Garden of Life, LLC conducted a sample test to uncover that several packages showed positive for soy proteins.  This recalled product was produced by a manufacturer that is not owned by Garden of Life. Regardless, Garden of Life quality control practices are still in place for products that Garden of Life distributes.

Contact Information