M70-101 OG0-093 ASC-029 ASIS-CPP AWMP BCP-240 BH0-006 BH0-007 BH0-012 C_BOCR_08 C_BODI_20 C_EPMBPC_70 C_ISR_60 C_PXSUP_90 C_SRM_70

Should I Communicate with or Contact the Insurance Company of the Person Who Caused My Injuries?

April 16, 2015

You should not call the claims adjuster for the responsible party after a vehicle accident, especially if you have hired a St. Augustine lawyer to represent you. Instead, talk to your attorney about your concerns. He can find out the needed information for you.


 

Contact a St. Augustine Lawyer

For help with your claim, contact a St. Augustine lawyer from Canan Law at (904) 824-9402.

Florida Criminal Defense Lawyer Discusses the Criminal Profiling Process

April 9, 2015

Jacksonville Criminal Attorney handcuffed handsAside from solving crimes, what do the 1990s television show Law & Order: Criminal Intent, the 2005 television series Criminal Minds, and the 1991 film Silence of the Lambs have in common? A Jacksonville criminal attorney observes that the protagonists solved the crimes using criminal profiling.

What is Criminal Profiling?

Criminal profiling, also known as offender profiling, is a behavioral and investigative tool intended to help investigators to accurately predict and profile the characteristics and mindset of unknown criminal subjects or offenders.

How Does It Work?

Almost every factor related to a crime is used in criminal profiling, such as:

  • Forensic evidence;
  • Crime scene characteristics; and,
  • Victim characteristics.

There are multiple steps involved in criminal profiling:

  • Gather all the information.
  • Answer relevant questions with the evidence.
  • Collect the personality through the criminal’s behavior:
    • Antecedent – fantasies and plans the criminal had prior to the crime;
    • Method and manner – the way the criminal committed the crime;
    • Body disposal – whether the body remained or was removed from the crime scene;
    • Post-offense behavior – the criminal’s actions after the crime was committed.
  • Case linkage or linking analysis – process of determining whether or not there are discrete connections between two or more previously unrelated cases through crime analysis.
  • Create the criminal profile – age, race, sex, physiological characteristics, religious beliefs, intelligence, mental stability, etc.

Does It Work?

A Jacksonville criminal attorney understands the benefits to criminal profiling, but also the dangers of relying too much on criminal profiling. Incorrect information from profiling could lead to false positives or negatives. At times, investigators may find a suspect who appears to fit an incorrect profile and ignore or stop investigating other leads.
Another problem is the lack of solid empirical evidence to support its use by investigators or in the courtroom. Several studies or scientific tests revealed that those specialized in criminal profiling did not do any better than those people that did not have this specialized training.

Contact a Jacksonville Criminal Attorney

For more information, contact a Jacksonville criminal attorney with Canan Law at (904) 824-9402.

Lawyers in Palatka Florida Explain Why Proving Medical Malpractice Is So Difficult

March 9, 2015

lawyers in palatka floridaIt is difficult to miss the plethora of stories about successful medical malpractice cases. The legal world is a difficult business, and attorneys compete for cases that they think have a chance of success. Unfortunately, the truth is that most medical malpractice cases do not succeed. There are numerous reasons for this, beginning with finding qualified and experienced lawyers in Palatka Florida.

Finding an Attorney Who Can Fight for You

Medical malpractice is a very specialized area of personal injury law. For this reason, it can be challenging to find a medical malpractice attorney who wants to take your case, let alone one with the background to provide sufficient legal counsel. It is important that you find lawyers in Palatka Florida who specialize in medical malpractice.

The following are some reasons for this:

  • Medical malpractice cases are generally much more expensive than their personal injury counterparts. This is in large part because a successful case almost certainly will require the testimony of one or more medical experts, and these are costly. Your attorney will need to be prepared to bear the burden of these costs should your claim be unsuccessful, and one who does not specialize in this area is unlikely to be willing to do so.
  • Many doctors are unwilling to testify against one of their own; therefore, it is difficult to find such a doctor. A strong and experienced attorney will have a list of doctors who can be relied upon for such testimony.
  • Medical malpractice cases deal with complex issues, thus the need for a medical expert. Unless your attorney is very strong in the field of medical malpractice, she is unlikely to be able to deal with these complex ideas when presenting them to the jury.
  • An insurance company is unlikely to respect an attorney for the plaintiff who has no background in medical malpractice. A settlement is less likely to be forthcoming, therefore.

The Challenge of Proving Your Case

Even with a strong medical malpractice lawyer who specializes in this very technical field, it can be quite challenging to prove your case. One reason for this is that it is difficult to show the doctor’s negligence. Often the only real evidence is the notes kept by the doctor. The doctor is unlikely to acknowledge an error on his part, even in his notes. Such notes, indeed, can often be very difficult to understand. Another challenge you will find is that juries tend to side with the defendant in medical malpractice cases. This may be in part because they realize the difficulty inherent in diagnosing and treating medical conditions. There are often a number of different ways to treat a particular disease, and proving that the doctor was negligent can be problematic unless an obvious error was made.

Don’t Be Discouraged from Seeking Compensation

If you are a victim of medical malpractice, it is important that you don’t become discouraged by the difficulty you may face in proving your case. Knowledgeable lawyers in Palatka Florida may be able to help. Call Canan Law for legal expertise now at 904.824.9402.

Express v. Implied Consent and Medical Malpractice

March 3, 2015

personal injury attorney in st. augustineWhen you receive certain treatments, a health care provider needs your consent. Family members may give consent on your behalf if you were unconscious. Failure to obtain express consent could be considered negligence or even medical malpractice if you were harmed as a result.

What Is Express Consent?

Express consent is when you specifically consent/authorize a medical treatment. However, just agreeing to the procedure is inadequate. You must give an “informed” consent, which includes information about:

  • Name of the procedure;
  • Any anesthesia or other medications that may be utilized;
  • Potential complications;
  • Additional surgical procedures that the surgeon may need to perform in the event of a complication;
  • Side effects of the procedure;
  • Risks associated with the procedure; and,
  • Alternatives to the procedure.

Generally, you are given a written consent form that embodies some or all of the above information. A doctor will arrive in your room to go over the form and answer any of your questions or concerns. After signing the written consent form you will then undergo the procedure.

A personal injury attorney in St. Augustine explains that the purpose of informed consent is to ensure that you understand the chances of success and failure of a given medical procedure.

What If I Did Not Consent?

Medical malpractice claims over lack of express consent occur when, for example, a surgeon performs surgery on the wrong body part or decides to perform a secondary, non-emergency, surgical procedure when the patient only consented to the single procedure identified in the consent form.

Express consent issues may arise when a complication occurs during the surgical procedure, but the consent form:

  • Failed to identify that particular complication as a potential complication;
  • Downplayed how common the complication occurs; or,
  • Differed from the doctor’s explanation or description of the complication.

Not every complication needs to be listed on the consent form. Generally, the more likely complications will be discussed, but not the rare ones. However, a personal injury attorney in St. Augustine will argue that although the complication is rare, it is a well-known complication that has been discussed in medical literature and therefore, you should have been informed for that complication.

What Is Implied Consent?

Implied consent is when consent is inferred from the circumstances. Patients often give implied consent to non-surgical medical treatment by having the treatment or procedure such as undergoing a physical examination or receiving a flue shot or vaccination.

Are There Exceptions?

There are circumstances when your express consent cannot be obtained:

  • Implied consent is given during emergency situations, such as:
    • You require immediate treatment but you’re unable to provide consent due to unconsciousness and lack of relative or guardian; or,
    • When responding to a complication during surgery.
  • Your parents, relative or guardian will provide consent if you are:
    • A minor; or,
    • Mentally incompetent to provide consent.

Contact a Personal Injury Lawyer in St. Augustine

For additional information, contact a personal injury attorney in St. Augustine with Canan Law at (904) 842-9402.

 

 

Your Jacksonville DUI Lawyer Tells You Why You Were Pulled Over

February 19, 2015

If you have been pulled over by the police, you should find out if the stop was conducted legally or if your constitutional rights were violated. Did the police go by the book or did they search your car without any reason? Talk to a Jacksonville DUI lawyer to find out what the police are allowed to do.

jacksonville dui lawyer

Contact Your Jacksonville DUI Lawyer

For more help with your case, contact a Jacksonville DUI lawyer at Canan Law by calling (904) 824-9402.

A Green Cove Springs Beach Accident Attorney on What You Should Do If You’re Injured in a Car Accident

February 10, 2015

St. Augustine Auto Accident AttorneyBeing injured in a car accident is the last thing you need.  But if it happens, there are some things you should do.

Contact the Police

Report the details of the accident, your injuries and your symptoms to the police officer.  Obtain the police officer’s accident report, which  will detail the accident, contain witness information, indicate if citations were issued, and possibly also include the results of the officer’s investigation of the accident.

Exchange Insurance Information

Your insurance company may request for the other party’s insurance information.

Obtain Witness Information

Obtaining witness names, addresses and contact information will assist in any future investigations, especially if the matter of who is at fault is contested.

Take Photographs

Photographs of the accident scene, damages to the vehicles and property, and your injuries will help preserve evidence that may otherwise disappear.  For example, visible injuries, such as bruises or scratches, will heal.  The accident scene will also be cleaned up.   The photographs will assist a Green Cove Springs Beach accident attorney to depict the severity of the accident to the jury and help experts reconstruct the accident.

Silence

Except for when you report the accident to the police officer, your insurance company, your treating physicians, or your attorney, you should not discuss the accident with others.  A Green Cove Springs Beach accident lawyer will explain that you may accidentally say something that could be misinterpreted and later used against you if the matter is litigated in court.

Seek Medical Attention

Explain the details of the accident along with your injuries to your treating physician.  This also provides objective proof of the injuries you sustained in the accident.

Keep Receipts

Receipts are proof of your expenses.

Don’t Post

Posting photographs on social medical could be misconstrued or misinterpreted and used against you.

Contact a Green Cove Springs Beach Accident Attorney

You have four years to file a lawsuit from the date of the accident or your claim vanishes.  For more information, contact a Green Cove Springs Beach accident attorney with Canan Law at (904) 824-9402.

St. Augustine Auto Accident Attorney Explains Who Can Be Liable in a Car Crash

February 5, 2015

If you have ever sustained an injury to your body in a similar location as your most recent injury, you might think that you have no chance of succeeding with a new personal injury claim. This is not necessarily true, as a St. Augustine auto accident attorney can explain. For more information about how prior injuries will affect your case, especially after an auto accident, read on.

st. augustine auto accident attorney

Contact a St. Augustine Auto Accident Attorney

For more assistance with your case, please contact a St. Augustine auto accident attorney at Canan Law by calling (904) 824-9402.

Working with Your Personal Injury Lawyer

February 3, 2015

personal injury attorney in st. augustineIf you have suffered an injury that was caused by another person’s negligent or intentional conduct, you have a right to compensation. Securing that right means finding the right personal injury attorney in St. Augustine. When accident victims try to represent themselves, the adverse party or the party’s insurer often refuses to pay or offers a woefully inadequate amount in view of the victim’s injuries and expenses.

What Does a Personal Injury Attorney in St. Augustine Cost?

As an accident victim, you have the luxury of consulting with more than one personal injury attorney before making your choice. You needn’t worry about breaking the bank. Law firms commonly take personal injury cases based on contingency fees; you don’t pay out-of-pocket for the initial consultation, future meetings, or the legal services the attorney performs. Rather, the attorney receives a percentage of the settlement amount negotiated prior to trial (or prior to the completion of trial) or the judgment awarded from trial. The percentage may vary, depending on the simplicity or complexity of a case. One third of the net award is a typical figure.

Thus, unlike cases that are billed at an hourly rate, the attorney does not get paid unless you are paid.

Initial Consultation

Come prepared with questions. The attorney will listen to your story, provide you with feedback about your case, and answer any questions you may have. These consultations are confidential.

During the meeting, you will be discussing how, when, and where you were injured; your medical treatment; whether you missed work; and whether your injuries will require future care and future missed work. A personal injury attorney in St. Augustine may also inquire whether you were partially to blame for the accident and whether you previously sustained an injury to the same area of your body affected by the accident. It is important to be absolutely honest, even if the truth seems to hurt your case.

What you say will affect the accuracy of the case evaluation. The consultation gives you a chance to determine whether the attorney is right for you, and it also gives the attorney a chance to determine whether you and your the case are right for the attorney. Since the attorney will not be paid unless you win, the attorney may decline cases that he or she feels are unlikely to be successful.

If the attorney decides to take your case, he or she must know all the facts, good and bad, to bring your case to a successful conclusion. Clients make a big mistake by trying to hide “bad” facts. They will come out in the end and ruin your case if your attorney hasn’t had an opportunity to prepare for them.

Expenses

As indicated above, attorneys are paid a percentage of the net award. The net award is calculated based upon the total reward minus the expenses. Expenses that a personal injury attorney in St. Augustine may charge against your award include:

  • Deposition fees
  • Expert and/or investigation fees
  • Costs of obtaining records and reports (e.g. medical records, police reports, incident reports)
  • Court fees (e.g. filing pleadings and any motions)
  • Arbitration fees, if applicable
  • Legal research costs
  • Office expenses (e.g. fax, copying, stamps, etc.)

You will be responsible for paying any outstanding medical costs and repaying Medicare, if applicable. This is usually paid out of your take-home award (net award minus the attorney’s fees).

Contact a Personal Injury Attorney in St. Augustine

For more information, contact Canan Law, skilled personal injury attorney in St. Augustine, at (904) 824-9402.

Dangers Inherent When Driving a Truck

November 20, 2014

traffic

Any driver that operates a vehicle while in an impaired condition can be the cause of a
serious accident. In this article, a St. Augustine truck accident attorney looks at what can happen when an impaired driver is operating a tractor-trailer or other type of big rig.

Impairment

Impairment is the reduced ability to control mental and physical functions. This can result from use of alcohol, prescription or nonprescription drugs, exhaustion, illness and the like. Any of these factors acting on the driver of any vehicle is a recipe for disaster. However, when you combine these factors and the driver of a tractor-trailer, the danger skyrockets. These vehicles are enormous, and they can neither turn nor stop on a dime. The driver whose control over himself or herself is reduced can have little or no control over his or her vehicle. When such a driver causes an accident, severe injuries can be the result and the driver may be liable for damages sustained by the victims.

A Very Real Danger

No one likes to believe that the drivers operating these big rigs are anything other than wide awake and sober. However, this is not always the case. The fact that the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, or FMCSA, has developed and implemented stringent standards concerning the use of alcohol and drugs by truck drivers demonstrates that this is not a situation to be taken lightly. Drug and alcohol screening for newly hired drivers and random testing for currently employed drivers must be completed by all trucking companies. Any driver involved in an accident must also be tested, especially if the accident caused severe injuries or if the truck driver was ticketed by a police officer.

Dangers of Driving While Impaired

Alcohol and drugs affect a truck driver in the same manner as they would anyone driving an automobile, motorcycle or any other vehicle. The driver’s reaction time is diminished; his or her reasoning ability and situational awareness is reduced; and reflex actions are slowed. The drowsiness caused by alcohol and certain medications or nonprescription drugs can cause the driver to go to sleep while operating the vehicle, to misread signs or fail to see impending threats or hazards.

It is not necessary for the driver to take drugs in order for this to happen. It can also happen if the driver is overtired from driving hour-after-hour. Truck drivers often take stimulants in their efforts to stay awake, but when these wear off exhaustion sets in. In an effort to minimize this risk, FMCSA guidelines mandate that drivers observe appropriate periods of downtime and limit their driving to specific lengths of time.

In Case of an Accident

People who have been injured or victimized through an accident involving an impaired truck driver are not without legal recourse. An experienced St. Augustine truck accident lawyer can help to determine whether or not legal proceedings will be of benefit and how best to demonstrate that the driver was in fact impaired. This may be done through drug or alcohol testing, but fatigue is a more difficult issue unless the drowsiness can be linked to a drug of some sort. If the driver was overtired after having driven for too long, one way to demonstrate that would be for your lawyer to examine the driver’s logs. These provide a written record of his or her hours at the wheel.

If You Were Injured in an Accident Involving a Truck

If you believe the truck driver was driving while impaired, contact your St. Augustine truck accident attorney by calling the Attorneys at Canan Law at 904-824-9402 today.

 

The Law Offices of Patrick T. Canan in St. Augustine, Florida represents clients throughout St. Johns County, Duval County, Flagler County, Putman County, Clay County,
and the cities of St. Augustine, Ponte Vedra Beach, Palm Coast, Palatka, Green Cove Springs, Bunnell, Flagler Beach, Hastings, Crescent City, Interlachen, and Jacksonville.

The Offices of Patrick T. Canan | 1030 N. Ponce de Leon Blvd | St. Augustine, FL 32084 | Telephone 904.824.9402 | Fax 904.824.9269
Email generalinquiries@cananlaw.com | For emergencies, call 904.716.3450 | Office Hours: 8:30-5:00 Monday through Friday
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