Articles Posted in insurance claims/lawsuit

ostad.pictureThe young daughter of a 23-year-old man killed while riding his motorcycle has been awarded a $1 million verdict for damages. The jury award was part of $2.8 million in total damages granted to the survivors of the victim, who died when a car struck his motorcycle.The family’s attorney, expressed some degree of satisfaction, even though no amount of money will bring the victim back.”I am very satisfied that the jury awarded this child double what we had asked for,” he said. According to court records,the victim who worked as a manager for a large retailer was riding his motorcycle. A car collided with him resulting in his death. The negligence claim was based on the fact that the driver of the car failed to yield the right of way while driving a Ford Mustang, the plaintiff’s lawyer said.

The suit sought damages for pain, suffering and mental anguish.After the issue of liability was determined by Circuit court, the jury assessed how much damages should be paid to the victim’s survivors. In addition to $1 million awarded to the victim’s 5-year-old daughter, his parents will each receive $500,000 under the verdict. Another $798,000 was awarded for economic damages, including $4,200 for funeral expenses, Sweat said.The award was high, but not near the highest granted. The record verdict reached was in 2007 when $110 million was awarded against a man for sexual abuse. The victim moved to the area in 2005 from Georgia. He enjoyed skateboarding, the outdoors and was a member of a Christian Church, his family said.

If you or your friend has been a victim of a motorcycle or bicycle accident call me at 1-800-320-0080 to set up an appointment at one of my conveniently located offices in Rockville or Baltimore or hospital visit.

As an experienced Baltimore attorney I have unfortunately witnessed many cases of insurance companies delaying payments to my clients after the death of a loved one. Why do they do this you ask? The company you faithfully paid all these years to be there for you in times of need?One reason and one reason only and that’s money. The more the insurance companies pay out to you the less profit they have to show their shareholders so they delay making payments for as long as possible (if ever) to show a greater profit margin to their board of directors.

Faced with diminishing profits the big insurance companies have taken to disputing or delaying payments which totaled more than $343 million in 2010. Unfortunately this is just a sliver of the evidence that shows that the insurance companies have their own best interests at heart,not yours. Their main goal is to get your premiums or payments as quickly as possible while reducing the risk to themselves that they will ever have to pay out.They employ a number of strategies to postpone paying death benefits. In fact at least 35 states are presently investigating claims that insurance companies willfully ignored evidence of customers deaths sometimes for years to avoid paying claims.Unfortunately there is no federal oversight for life insurers so it is up to each individual state to mandate laws.This is why you need a attorney with experience in your state to cut through the red tape so you can receive your benefits.At least 30 states are investigating why insurance companies don’t use accessible national databases such as the Social Security Administrations Death Master file to determine who should receive benefits.The Insurance companies don’t have an issue using this list to STOP paying annuity payments after an insured has died but when it comes to them MAKING a payment they fake ignorance by putting the ball in the insurers court.In some cases the insurance companies delay payments for years and subtracts premiums until it dwindles down to zero at which time they cancel the policy.The insurance companies selective use of the national death database has let them successfully hold on to more than a billion dollars in unclaimed benefits.What can you do about this you ask? Plenty!Call an experienced attorney such as myself and I will navigate through the bureaucratic maze to get you the money you are entitled to under the law.
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A jury returned a $4.2 million verdict against a physician whose patient suffered a number of strokes that left her with severe memory loss and partial blindness.Jurors deliberated for over two days after listening to evidence presented in a medical malpractice lawsuit brought by the victim against her personal family physician and a doctor at the hospital claiming they were negligent in treating her.The jury found the conduct of her family physician fell below the standard of medical care in his treatment of the plaintiff. She and her husband sued both doctors in county court. Jurors found the hospital’s doctor was not negligent and no monetary damages were levied against him.

Hopefully this brings some closure for the plaintiffs said their attorney.In the judgment against the doctor the jury awarded $3.7 million to the victim and $500,000 to the victim’s husband.Jurors determined that the doctor, who was the plaintiff’s physician when she was admitted to the hospital after having suffered multiple strokes, was responsible for increasing the risk of harm to her after she had another massive stroke when she was discharged from the hospital three months later.The suit claimed the doctor failed to recognize the importance of a report from a neurologist sent to him after the plaintiff was discharged from the hospital and should have been aware of the risk of continued and further strokes. The plaintiff 54, now has severe, permanent and disabling injuries as well as damage to her optic nerve that has caused partial blindness.Due to her injuries she had to leave her job as a manager at a supermarket chain and will stay unemployed.
Of the $4.2 million verdict the jurors awarded $500 thousand to the plaintiff for the loss of future work earnings. The money will help them support themselves but can never bring back her loss of eyesight and brain function.
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There are millions and millions of car accident claims every year. In order to get the most out of your car accident claim it is required that you know about the process and what to do if you are ever in the unfortunate predicament of being in a car accident yourself.The time period immediately following a car accident can be filled with an overwhelming amount of stress, but it is necessary to keep calm so you can maximize your insurance benefits.Confidently navigating the claims process requires patience and organization.Follow the steps below for how to get the most from your car accident claim:

1.Contact us at the law offices of Joseph Ostad at 800 320-0080 and explain the circumstances of your accident claim in as much detail as possible.
2.Keep all documentation, including reports, receipts, and estimates relating to your accident, in order. Put papers together in a file so that when you need them, they are easy to find. Keep track of claim numbers and people with whom you have spoken.And make sure your lawyer has a copy of all this as well.
3.Document expenses relating to your accident, including missed work and medical costs. These will be part of the total settlement you receive, so make sure to include every related expense. If you are planning to claim an expense as part of the damages or loss from your accident, you will need to provide documentation of the expense. Letters, affidavits, estimates and receipts are all generally accepted as valid evidence.Research the value of your vehicle or get a second opinion about the cost of any repairs. The value of most vehicles is available online through Kelley Blue Book. A mechanic or body shop can provide an estimate for the cost of repairs if you do not trust the value proposed by your insurance. This will put your lawyer in the position to counter if they believe you are not offered a fair settlement in your case.
5.Review your policy with your attorney to see what the extent of your coverage is if you are uncertain.
6.Understand that your lawyer will be dealing with a car insurance claims adjuster and know that the adjuster works for the insurance company, and it is in their job duty and interest to save their company money!So, they are not looking out for you. You need to a good lawyer look out for you.
7.When you are offered a settlement, take time with your lawyer to review it. If you both think your claim is worth more than the offer, your lawyer can counter and explain why it is worth more. Insurance claims adjusters generally have a range (often thousands of dollars) in which they can work to settle out your case. While asking for more compensation doesn’t guarantee you will receive it, you won’t get it if you don’t ask!
8. Don’t be afraid of negotiating! At the law firm of Joseph Ostad we pride ourselves on our tenacity to receive top dollars for our clients claims.Negotiating is easy enough if you are armed with some facts regarding the value of your car and get outside opinions to support your counter.offer.The worse that can happen is that they will say no. The original offer will probably still be on the table, so nothing will be lost.
9. It may be tempting to hurry your settlement along,or trying to do it yourself but rushing can result in you not receiving the full amount of compensation to which you are entitled. Make sure you are in the capable hands of a good attorney to help you navigate the tricky claims process.
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The plaintiff says the jury award of $1.9 million was unfortunately bittersweet because he’s unable to do what he loved best, working as a Mason cop. After five hours of deliberations the jury found that the defendant was negligent and responsible for the injuries that causes the victim severe pain while he walks and he sometimes must rely on a cane for stability.The plaintiff was directing traffic after Mass at a Church on when the defendant sped out of the parking lot and struck him with her car. She then fled the scene.

The defendant’s Baltimore accident attorney, claimed the plaintiff was not hit by a car but instead had backed into his client’s car and only suffered minor contusions. The plaintiff’s Rockville injury attorney reminded the jury about a statement the defendant had written five days after the accident which she wrote that she hit him with her car and he flew up in the air and was knocked to the pavement.He also reminded the jury that several doctors testified about the victim’s injuries and the fact he will never be able to be a law enforcement officer and is only physically capable to work in one percent of available job categories in this economy.The plaintiff said the money will allow he and his wife to stop worrying about bills, but his life will never be the same. He said he doesn’t drive through the town anymore and doesn’t watch television police shows and all he does is go to rehab and counseling because the mental side is very difficult for him.
It was bittersweet, he said of the verdict. Financially we’re going to be taken care of, it was much more than I thought we would get. But for me it doesn’t change my life, I can’t do 95 percent of what I used to do, that includes working as a police officer. No amount of money is going to give me back that part, which was the most important part of my life.
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Seat Belt Case May Divide U.S. Supreme Court Over Minimum Standards U.S. Supreme Court justices signaled they may divide, perhaps evenly, in a case involving a Motor Corp. that could open automakers to more consumer lawsuits over vehicle safety.
Hearing arguments today in Washington, several justices hinted they would let accident victims sue even when automakers meet minimum federal standards set by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, or NHTSA.

“A minimum by definition gives manufacturers options,” Justice Sonia Sotomayor said. Others, including Chief Justice John Roberts, suggested they would vote to limit lawsuits and reinforce a 2000 decision that shielded car makers from some claims. “You have a jury with an injured plaintiff,” Roberts said. “They are not likely to weigh heavily the fact that this would cost 3 extra cents per car fleet-wide. I think that is the sort of thing NHTSA considers.” The court might deadlock 4-4 because Elena Kagan, the newest justice, has disqualified herself. As the Obama administration’s solicitor general earlier this year, she urged the court to take the case. A tie vote would leave intact a lower court victory for the automakers without setting a national precedent. Protecting Carmakers The auto industry is asking the court to bolster the 2000 decision, which said federal law shields automakers from state law claims that manufacturers didn’t move quickly enough to install air bags in the years before they became mandatory in new cars. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce, food producers and makers of children’s products have weighed in on Mazda’s side. NHTSA, an agency within the Transportation Department, has 59 safety standards that govern automotive components, including windshield wipers, internal trunk releases and seat belts. The standards set performance guidelines that manufacturers must follow. Justice Stephen Breyer hinted he was inclined to defer to the federal agency, which says its standards shouldn’t shield carmakers from suits claiming they didn’t do enough to make vehicles as safe as possible. Agency Expertise “Who is most likely to know what 40,000 pages of agency records actually mean and say? People in the agency,” Breyer said. “If the government continuously says, ‘This is what the agency means’ and the agency is telling them, ‘Yes, this is what it means,’ the chances are they will come to a better, correct conclusion than I will with my law clerks.” Mazda, based in Hiroshima, Japan, was sued by the family of the victim who died in 2002 in Utah as she was riding in a rear aisle seat in the second row of a 1993 MPV minivan. When the minivan was manufactured, seat belts that buckled only over the lap — without a shoulder harness — were permitted by law for some back seat passengers. The current regulations took effect in 2007 and require new cars to have shoulder restraints in all forward-facing seats, including rear aisle seats. The victim’s van struck a Jeep Wrangler that had become detached from a motor home that was towing it. The collision forced the victim’s body to jackknife around her seat belt, causing severe abdominal injuries and internal bleeding, according to the lawsuit filed by her husband.
The lawyer for the family argued that automakers “should be held accountable for the choices they make.” The attorney who argued the case for Mazda, said NHTSA “specifically gave manufacturers the option of installing one type of seat belt or the other.” A California state appeals court barred the suit from going forward, ruling it was preempted by federal law. Mazda’s U.S. headquarters is in Irvine, California.
The Supreme Court last year, ruling on preemption in a different context, said consumers can sue drug makers for failing to provide adequate safety warnings. The 6-3 ruling said drug companies aren’t shielded from suit by the Food and Drug Administration’s approval of a treatment and its packaging information.
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What is medical malpractice you ask? As an experienced attorney with offices in Rockville and Baltimore Maryland, I can tell you that many people are unaware of their rights when it come to Medical Malpractice and hospital errors.Statistics show that over 195,000 people are killed each year due to hospital and doctor errors.Unfortunately only a fraction of these cases are ever handed over to an attorney.Why you ask? I’m not sure but I believe that many people don’t think that they have a case because the hospitals always deny their responsibility.

Of course they do as litigation can cost the hospital millions of dollars each year not including the bad PR it will give them. Many people feel that they are not as smart as the doctors and feel intimidated to ask questions. This is exactly the reason you need an experienced attorney to review your case and demand your medical records from the hospital. The next step your attorney will do is to have an independent medical professional(someone NOT employed by the hospital) to go over your case to see how and when the mistakes where made and if proper medical procedure was followed. If it is determined that a negligent medical mistake was made a lawsuit will be filed against the doctor and hospital.You have the legal right to expect pristine medical care when you enter a hospital regardless of you financial means or status.Insurance companies like to try and dissuade people from filing medical malpractice lawsuits claiming “frivolous” lawsuits cause healthcare costs to rise. Nothing could be further from the truth as of course it benefits the insurance companies to never “pay out” on malpractice claims and this keeps their money with them! The story has been spun to vilify the lawyers but this is exactly why everyone has insurance ;to help you financially if a bad situation ever arises.Please know your rights and if you are not sure you should call an experienced attorney such as myself to receive the compensation you are entitled to.
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Trying to find out if a deceased person had a life insurance policy can be extremely difficult at the time of a loved one’s death. Emotions will be running high among family members and close friends and taking care of business can be the last thing on your mind. But it is an important time to find policies that can pay for many immediate costs of death and a experienced lawyer can be a godsend during this difficult time. Remember that many life insurance policies can take weeks and maybe even months before they are approved for payment especially without the help of a qualified attorney.There are final expense policies that focus on immediate needs that include transportation of the body, funeral costs and even everyday bills. Those policies can be paid in as little as 72 hours.The documents you will need to claim benefits from a deceased relative and to give to your attorney are as follows:
1.Personal documents 2.Banking or credit card statements 3. Income tax returns
A further examination of your and your relatives home is imperative to locate relevant paperwork that can help your attorney facilitate death benefit money for you.Examine where the person has stored important documents in the home. There could be file boxes in closets or the attic. Check with a family member or close friends who can provide clues. Important documents are also kept with attorneys, banks, financial advisers or business associates.Have your lawyer contact prior attorneys, accountants, financial advisers or business associates who may have done business with the person in the past. It is impossible these people have information or can link you to someone who knows about life insurance policies taken out.Locate the person’s auto or home insurance agents and give this to your attorney.They may have provided a life insurance policy as well.Have your lawyer contact the deceased’s employer or past employer to see if the person may benefit from a group life insurance policy.Get in touch with the Medical Information Bureau for lost life insurance. The person may be listed in a database that insurance companies use for information on people. Those companies can be contacted to see if any life insurance policies are in full force. It costs about $8 for record searches,your attorney can facilitate this for you. Find more than one life insurance policy by reading the application for another policy. The applications may list other life insurance policies the person owned.Check the mail and give all relevant letters to your lawyer.The person will continue to receive information on the life insurance policies for premium or dividend notices. Companies may still send out regular status reports on insurance policies for a year or more.Find out if there had been any interest income or expenses paid on life insurance policies by examining the deceased’s income tax returns.There is a lot of work and preparation to be done and the insurance companies often drag the procedure out so as to not pay you quickly;this is the reason an experienced attorney is necessary to claim your loved one’s death benefits.
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A Circuit Court civil jury awarded $3 million to relatives of a woman killed by a reckless driver as she walked on a stretch of road that was not equipped with sidewalks or guard rails.The jury found the state liable in the wrongful death lawsuit and voted to award $2.5 million to the victim’s 2 year old daughter after her mother was struck and killed by the motorist.The victim was walking on the road when a car veered onto the shoulder and struck her and a friend.

The friend died at the scene. The victim, who was five months pregnant, died at a hospital. So did her unborn child. That section of road, also known as Route 4. is maintained by the state. The attorney who represented the victim’s family in the lawsuit, told jurors that the accident was preventable. On the block that the victims were walking, there is a sidewalk at both ends of the street .but also a gap of about 200 feet where there is no sidewalk or guard rails. The two victims were struck as they walked in that section.The attorney told jurors that state officials should have provided a sidewalk, guard rails, or a combination to improve safety for pedestrians.In addition to the award for the victim’s daughter, the jury also awarded $500,000 to her mother.The assistant attorney general who defended the state in the civil trial, declined to comment on the verdict.
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The mother of a teen who was shot and killed by police on the train early alleged in a lawsuit that her son was wounded multiple times at close range even though he posed no threat and carried no weapon.The lawsuit contended that the victim 19, was on a train at the local train station when uniformed officers boarded the train, pinned his arms behind his back and handcuffed him. The suit, filed by his mother against the city and Police Department, alleged that the officers then shot her son with utter indifference and conscious disregard.

Police said the victim began to fight with the two officers and pointed a gun at them, prompting them to shoot.Police spokesman claim a gun was recovered at the scene.
A spokeswoman with the Law Department declined comment .The victim’s attorney has a list of witnesses that claim the victim wasn’t pointing or brandishing a gun. One witness stated the victim had his back to the police and police had one handcuff or both handcuffs on him.The plaintiff is filing a wrongful death claim against the city and the police department.She hopes this will deter the police from using deadly force against other victims in the future.She asks “Why couldn’t the police have used a taser gun? My son didn’t have to die.”
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