| Read Time: 2 minutes | Auto Accidents

What to Do After A Commercial Truck Accident

It’s hard enough to know what to do after a car accident, but if you’ve been involved in a commercial truck accident it’s even more complicated. Commercial trucks can be registered in any of the 50 states and also in Canada or Mexico, involving both state laws and federal laws governing interstate commerce. If you’ve been seriously injured in a commercial truck accident, it’s important to hire an attorney that has experience handling cases involving big rigs and 18 wheelers.   Call the Police to the Scene The most important thing to protect is your health. That’s why the first thing to do is to call the police, who will arrange to have an ambulance sent to the scene. If you are seriously injured, try to move around as little as possible until the ambulance arrives. It’s important to have your injuries checked out at the hospital even if they don’t seem serious at first as internal injuries might not be symptomatic.  If you are not seriously injured, use the time that you’re waiting for the police to take photos and videos of the scene or ask others to do this for you.   Report the Accident To Your Own Insurance Company Many insurance policies have timely reporting requirements so it’s important to report the commercial truck accident as soon as possible. If you have coverage for medical benefits, lost earnings or damage to your vehicle, it’s helpful to begin these processes quickly so that you can collect the monies due to you quickly.   Do Not Speak To The Commercial Truck’s Insurance Company Insurance adjusters can be very friendly when they call you up and tell you that they can help you resolve everything quickly. What they are trying to do is to get to you say things that will hurt your case and/or to settle your case for much less than it’s worth. If you are contacted by the commercial truck’s insurance company before you’ve retained an attorney, just ignore the calls. Consult with an experienced commercial truck accident attorney as soon as possible after the accident.   If you have been injured by a commercial truck driver, call Silva Injury Law, Inc. today!

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| Read Time: < 1 minute | Silva Injury Law

Thank you Turlock!

All of us here at Silva Injury Law thank you! Thank you Turlock for voting us your favorite law firm!  We are humbled and honored that you believe in us and we appreciate you all! If you are interested in having Silva Injury Law represent your personal injury case, call (209) 600-4389 to learn more about this award winning team. You need a law firm that will provide you with an honest, straightforward, easy-to-understand discussion about your case. Read more on how we can keep assisting you! Thank you so much again! Michael Joe Silva

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| Read Time: 3 minutes | Auto Accidents

California Drivers – 10 Amazing tips for staying safe when driving in the rain

As you know Californian’s typically don’t encounter too much rain and when we do, it can unexpected and challenging to be in the road, As of recent, we have gotten a lot of rain here and the storms aren’t stopping anytime soon. Safety should be your main concern, but not all drivers follow these rules.   Here are our top 10 tips for driving in the rain: 1.)  Watch your speed.  This is the thing that can make or break your travels. The faster you go the harder it will be to stop or slow down. Hydroplaning can happen in the slightest of weather conditions.   2.) Headlights are your friend. Most new cars have an auto headlight feature, some older cars need to have the headlights turned on manually Headlights will help you see better, additionally, they help other drivers see you. Drivers behind you need to see your lights and break lights as well. Remember – wipers on, headlights on! It’s easy to perform a brake light test to see if you have a broken taillight and very affordable to replace these lights that are not working.   3.) First rain on the road. The first rain of the season can be the most difficult. There is residue of accumulated grease and oil on the roads, then when the rain starts the roads it creates s really slick and slippery road. It’s easy to loose control with these conditions.   4.) The wind is not your friend. Many rainstorms bring the heaviest of winds and if you are driving and you feel your car starting to move or sway, be sure to hold onto your steering wheel and remember to not panic. Make slight adjustments to stay in your lane. Also, be aware of large trucks and buses on the road, these larger vehicles are more susceptible to high winds due to their larger cargo area.   5.) Debris and puddles in the road. This can include objects such as car parts from accidents, fallen trees, large puddles or branches. Downed power lines also present a hazard. be alert for all these dangers on he road.You can not determine how deep the puddle is and the impact of a pothole or large area of water can cause you costly damage to your car and possible injury to you.   6.) Maintain a safe following distance. This rule should apply in regular driving conditions. However, under normal conditions, you would drive at least 5 seconds behind the vehicles in front of you. This should be practiced in all weather conditions. It’s especially important to increase your distance when driving behind vehicles, especially trucks and buses.   7.) Flooding and deep areas. Don’t drive through moving water or area where there are large puddles. If water is crossing the road, turn around and find an alternate route. Although It may not look like a strong current or a deep puddle, you never know what’s under the water (ie.a hazard in the road) , If the water is a moving, the current can carry you very easily, it can very-well carry you off the road. Turn around, don’t drown, don’t risk it. You risk getting stuck or trapped or ultimately ruining your vehicle can causing you harm.   8.) See and be seen. When it’s raining so hard that you can’t see the road or the cars around you, it’s best to pull over to be safe. It’s best to wait it out. If you can’t see the road, put on your four-way hazard flashers and find a safe place to pull off the road or highway. Other cars may have trouble seeing the road too and might not see you, it’s better to be safe than sorry.   9.) Windshield wipers. If you haven’t yet replaced your windshield wipers for this winter season, make this a priority. You need to have the best viability possible so you can see the road. Most auto supply shops and dealerships will install them for you at no charge.   10.) Wear rain gear! If, in the event you are stranded or are stuck in this crazy rainy weather, be sure you have the appropriate clothing and are prepared for all conditions. There is nothing worse than being cold whike waiting for assistance.   All of here at Silva Injury Law, Inc. we encourage all drivers to be careful when driving in rainy and stormy conditions. We can all reduce the number of injuries and fatalities if you follow these tips. If you or a loved one is the victim of a car crash in the rain we can help you. Additionally, a slip and fall on wet pavement can cause severe injuries. If your car crashes due to hydroplaning or other weather related accidents, consult us so we can assist you with the appropriate legal advice.

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| Read Time: 2 minutes | Healthcare Insurance

Healthcare Subrogation! A Major Reason to Never Settle Your Personal Injury Case Without an Attorney…

You have settled your personal injury case on your own quickly after the accident. You are happy because you did it alone without an attorney and you think the settlement is all yours. Life is good, right? All of a sudden, you are getting letters and/or calls from your own healthcare insurance stating that they have a right to be reimbursed for the money your healthcare insurance paid out on your medical treatment for the injuries from the accident. Chances are they want more back than what you settled your case for in the end. What do you now?   Whether you have private health insurance, such as Blue Cross, Kaiser, or Cigna or government health insurance, such as Medi-Cal, Medicare, or VA Benefits, the insurance company oftentimes has a right to subrogation if they paid any money towards your medical treatment for the accident. They essentially become a party of interest in your case since they are an injured party as well. They are an injured party because they only had to pay out money for your medical treatment because of the negligence of the third party who hurt you.   Government health insurance plans, such as Medi-Cal, Medicare, or the VA have a statutory right to subrogation. In other words, there are laws on the books that preserve their right to subrogation. Private health insurance, such as Blue Cross, Kaiser, or Cigna oftentimes have contractual subrogation clauses in their policy agreement that you agreed to when you signed up for insurance with them. Failure to preserve their right to subrogation can cause someone who went at it alone in settling their personal injury claim trouble. If your health insurance is self-funded by your employer, your employer’s subrogation rights may fall under the umbrella of ERISA, which is another major issue for someone attempting to settle their case alone. ERISA is a big topic, meritorious of its own blog post. Stay tuned for that blog in the near future.   Do not settle your case alone. Let a qualified personal injury attorney help you. A personal injury attorney can oftentimes get the amount the health insurance company is asking back dramatically reduced. Proceed with caution when it comes to settling your personal injury claim alone.   Michael Joe Silva with Silva Injury Law, Inc. has great experience in settling healthcare subrogation liens and maximizing the total amount that ends up in his clients’ pocket. CALL SILVA INJURY LAW, INC. TODAY IF YOU HAVE BEEN INJURED AS A RESULT OF THE NEGLIGENCE OF ANOTHER!

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| Read Time: 2 minutes | Dog Bite

Beware of Dog…

I love dogs as much as the next person. As a matter of fact, I love all animals. Growing up, I was very fascinated with animals, a love I have to this day. I still look forward to watching Jack Hanna and Jeff Corwin sharing their animal adventures every Saturday morning while jogging on a treadmill at my local Planet Fitness club. However, the reality is, dogs can behave in a dangerous manner, even when they’re unprovoked. If you own a dog, live near someone who owns a dog, or interact with any dogs no matter how remote the circumstances present themselves, this blog post is for you!   Dogs can bite! When they do, it can be devastating. When was the last time you read or saw in the news, “Child mauled to death by dog”. Probably not that long ago. I’ve represented several people who have been mauled by a dog or had a child mauled by a dog. The injuries are often times devastating. Physical scars remain for years as a constant reminder of the traumatic event suffered by the victim. A common response by the dog owner is, “My dog has never ever behaved in that manner. He/She is a very nice pooch.” This fact does not get a dog owner off the hook when it comes to their legal responsibility for their dog.   California is a statutory strict liability state. California’s dog bite law makes the owner of a dog strictly liable for any dog bite from the moment the person owns the dog, provided that the victim was not trespassing, provoking the dog, injured by his employer’s dog while on the job, or performing a paid service involving the dog. The victim is not required to prove negligence or anything else.   If you own a dog, it is imperative that you have some type of insurance to cover you in the event your dog attacks another person. Oftentimes, if you have homeowners or renters insurance, you should be covered. Make sure to check your policy to ensure that you are protected. If you or a family member have been attacked by a dog, contact a personal injury lawyer today. CALL SILVA INJURY LAW TO DISCUSS YOUR CASE IF YOU OR A FAMILY MEMBER HAVE BEEN ATTACKED BY A DOG. ALL LEGAL CONSULTATIONS ARE FREE!

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| Read Time: 2 minutes | Auto Accidents

DON’T SIGN ANYTHING!!!

Prior to becoming a personal injury attorney, I worked as a deputy district attorney. My job was to prosecute individuals accused of crimes. Most of the time, the people I prosecuted on behalf of the State of California were represented by capable defense attorneys. On rare occasions, a defendant would choose to represent him/herself. They would forfeit their right to be represented by counsel. The right to have someone on their team to ensure that their rights were fully protected. The judge would implore these defendants’ to reconsider their choice to go at it alone. After all, the defendant is oftentimes not trained in the law or how to protect their legal rights. The judge would tell them that if they were to lose, they cannot later say they want another trial with an attorney. Similar to the situation described above, you should not go at it alone if you’ve been injured in an auto accident through no fault of your own.   You have been in an auto accident. It is not your fault and you’re injured. You can expect a call from the insurance company of the driver who hit you very soon. They will try to get a statement from you hoping you will say something they can later use against you. Of course, they will be recording the conversation.   At some point they might even offer you a couple hundred dollars, maybe even a couple of thousand. They will hound you to sign the release before they will cut you a check. If you ask them whether you should get an attorney they will try to convince you that it is not necessary and an attorney will take all of your money.   Just take a moment to think about what has happened…Really think about it. First, they represent the person who hit you, NOT YOU! They work for the insurance company of the person who hit you, NOT YOU!   Consider the great NFL Quarterback Tom Brady. He did not become a great quarterback by taking advice and counsel from the linebackers on the opposing team on the field. He had his team to support him in winning.   Insurance companies care about paying out as little as possible to you, not what’s fair. They won’t tell you attorneys help their clients recover on average 3.5 times the amount they will offer to an unrepresented injured person. They will not ensure that you have adequate funds to cover past, present, and future medical treatment or damaged property.   Unfortunately, these tactics work for insurance companies, and injured persons who were not at fault are stuck with the medical bills, co-pays, loss of earnings due to missing work, lingering pain from the injuries sustained, etc.   Don’t sign anything unless you know exactly the consequences that your signature will lead to in the future. Even the playing field. Call a personal injury attorney to join your team.   IF YOU HAVE BEEN INJURED IN AN AUTO ACCIDENT, CALL SILVA INJURY LAW TODAY!

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| Read Time: < 1 minute | Auto Accidents

MedPay – What is it?…and why you need it…

What is MedPay? Medical Payments coverage, commonly known as MedPay coverage, pays medical expenses for you and any passengers in your vehicle who are injured during an accident or auto-related injury. You can and should consider getting MedPay coverage as part of your auto insurance policy.   Why you need MedPay… Unfortunately, medical bills accrue from treatment you receive from an auto accident, even if the accident wasn’t your fault. Personal injury claims can take time to resolve; however, that won’t stop medical bills from showing up in your mailbox. MedPay coverage can assist with paying your medical bills while your personal injury claim is pending. Your personal injury attorney can help you make a claim for MedPay with your auto insurance to help pay your medical bills while your personal injury claim is being handled.   CALL SILVA INJURY LAW IF YOU HAVE BEEN INJURED IN AN AUTOMOBILE ACCIDENT FOR A FREE LEGAL CONSULTATION!

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| Read Time: < 1 minute | Slip and Fall

What to do after a slip, trip or fall accident?

What to do immediately following a slip or trip and fall accident: Get Medical Attention Although you may feel fine initially, you may have sustained an injury and you cannot feel anything right away due to adrenaline. It is always better to have a medical professional check you over.   Inspect the Area Where the Fall Occurred Check your surroundings to see what you slipped or tripped over. If possible, try to take a picture of the area or have someone else take one for you.   Identify Witnesses Write down the names, addresses, and phone numbers of anyone in the area where you fell that witnessed the fall and/or state of the area where you fell.   Get an Incident Report If you fell in a store or business establishment, get an incident report with the manager of the establishment as soon as possible.   Take Photos As Soon As Possible Again, take photos of the area where you fell. Also, take photos of your injuries immediately after the accident and whenever bruising or swelling begins to occur.   What to do shortly after a slip or trip and fall accident: Consider retaining a personal injury attorney. It is likely that someone from the company will attempt to contact you after the accident. They may seem like they are trying to be your friend, but remember, they work for the opposing party, NOT YOU! They are going to try to get incriminating comments from you and minimize your case against them. Refer anyone who contacts you regarding the accident to your personal injury attorney.   IF YOU HAVE BEEN INJURED AS A RESULT OF A SLIP OR TRIP AND FALL ACCIDENT, CALL SILVA INJURY LAW TODAY FOR A FREE LEGAL CONSULTATION.

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| Read Time: < 1 minute | Auto Accidents

If you are hurt by an uninsured or under-insured motorist, here is what you need to know

Many people drive without insurance in California. Even more people drive with only minimum liability coverage of $15,000 per person and $30,000 per accident. If you are injured by a driver who is uninsured or underinsured, you will need another source of insurance coverage to pay for your injuries and losses. Many times, this will be your own uninsured motorist “UM” or underinsured motorist “UIM” coverage. Make Sure You Have UM/UIM Coverage In California, your insurance agent is required to offer you UM/UIM coverage at a level that is at least equal to your liability coverage. It only makes sense to protect yourself and your family at least as well as you protect other people. If you do not have UM/UIM coverage, then the insurance company is required to have a signed document that you declined coverage. If the insurance company cannot produce this document, you have the potential to be covered. How UM/UIM Coverage Works When you have uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage, your insurance company will stand in for the other party and pay for the same damages the other party’s insurance would have paid had they been adequately insured. Much like insurance companies for at fault parties in a collision with injuries, it will also look for ways to limit your claim or even avoid paying for your injuries and losses. Hiring an attorney to ensure your rights are protected is just as important in these situations as in situations when you would pursue a claim against another driver’s insurance company. REMEMBER: It is against the law for your insurance company to raise your rates if you were not at fault for the accident. IF YOU HAVE BEEN INJURED IN A CAR ACCIDENT BY AN UNDERINSURED OR UNINSURED DRIVER, CALL SILVA INJURY LAW FOR A FREE LEGAL CONSULTATION TODAY.

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