| Read Time: 2 minutes | Liability

California Landlord Liability Attorney

California Civil Code establishes that landlords are required to provide a safe living environment for tenants. When a landlord fails to maintain the property in a reasonably safe condition, they can be held liable for any injuries that occur due to their negligence. For all individuals who rent property in California, it is important to know that there are legal remedies for injuries which take place on a rental property.   WHAT ARE LANDLORDS LIABLE FOR?   When a property is leased or rented, the landlord has a legal obligation to maintain the apartment, home, or property in a safe condition. When a landlord fails to do so, they may be liable for injuries that occur on the property as a result of their negligence.   Examples of common injuries that may result from a landlord’s failure to maintain safe conditions may include: Injuries on poorly maintained stairwells, which may be exposed to the elements, poorly lit, and slippery; Drowning incidents in improperly maintained pools and pool areas, including young children who drown due to landlords failing to have required safety gates; Injuries that occur on playgrounds and other recreational equipment for children in common areas; Burns and other injuries sustained through faulty or dangerous water heaters; Collapsing materials such as ceiling tiles, exterior siding, roof pieces.   PROVING LANDLORD LIABILITY   Landlords are expected to use the care of a “reasonably prudent” landlord to manage rental properties. This requires that landlords keep all property in safe conditions, including not only the living areas but common areas as well.  The upkeep and maintenance of pools, gyms, stairways, spas, playgrounds, basketball courts, dog parks and other common areas are landlord’s responsibilities.   Whether or not a landlord acted “reasonably prudent” in maintaining property will always depend on the circumstances. Common examples of landlord negligence include:   The failure of the landlord to make repairs upon receiving notice of dangerous conditions; The landlord leaving repairs incomplete or negligently completing them; The landlord fails to provide warning of existing dangerous conditions that are not apparent to tenants.   Before a landlord can be found liable for injuries, the landlord must have knowledge of the potentially dangerous condition. Tenants should always notify landlords immediately when they become aware of an unsafe or hazardous condition.   WHAT TO DO IF YOU HAVE A LIABILITY CLAIM AGAINST YOUR LANDLORD?   If you believe you have a liability claim against your landlord, it is crucial that you consult with an attorney about your claim. An attorney is best able to analyze and prepare evidence to prove the landlord both knew a hazardous condition existed, and that they failed to repair it properly. An attorney is also able to evaluate all legal defenses your landlord may raise to avoid liability.   An attorney will also be able to determine if there are additional defendants who may be responsible for injuries, such a property management company, ensuring you receive maximum compensation.   If you have been injured due to a landlord’s negligence, reach out to an attorney at Silva Injury Law.  

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| Read Time: 2 minutes | Auto Accidents

Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Bodily Injury Arbitration

When a person is injured in a car accident caused by the negligence of another driver, the injured party may make a claim against the negligent driver’s insurance for their damages. What often occurs, however, is that the negligent driver’s insurance policy limit is insufficient to cover the damages, or the negligent driver has no insurance at all. In this instance, the injured party may be able to make a claim to their own insurer to cover all or the remaining damages. The feasibility of this depends on individual policies and will not be triggered unless the negligent driver’s insurance policy limits have been collected.   THE ROLE OF ARBITRATION   Regardless of whether the claim is due to an uninsured or underinsured motorist, when the insured injured party and their insurance company are unable to agree on the amount of the claim, California Vehicle Code §11580.2(f) requires that it must be set for arbitration.  This is considered to be a condition precedent to the payment of policy benefits, therefore unless there are unusual circumstances, arbitration must occur before the insured-injured party brings suit against the insurer.   Arbitration is required before an injured party can file suit against their own insurance whether it be due to the insurance company’s unwillingness to pay or bad faith offers and negotiations. California law requires that insurance companies act in good faith to come to an agreement with the insured party before the parties go to arbitration. However, if an insurance company fails to act in good faith, following arbitration the injured-insured party can file suit. POTENTIAL BAD FAITH CLAIMS   The outcome of arbitration often makes it clear whether or not there is a potential bad faith case against the insurance company. When the outcome of arbitration is an award significantly greater than the offers from the insurance company before arbitration, this is very strong evidence that the insurance company made the offer in bad faith. On the other side, however, when the arbitration award is either the same or similar to the amount initially offered by the insurer during pre-arbitration, it makes it significantly more difficult to have a viable bad faith case against the insurance company.   When the bad faith actions of the insurance company require the parties to go to arbitration, and the injured-insured party subsequently sues the insurance company, the insured can seek damages costs associated with their expenses related to the arbitration. This includes any attorney’s fees or costs. The costs of an attorney to represent the insured in arbitration are often one of the main elements of economic damages sought in bad faith actions.   SEEK LEGAL REPRESENTATION Ultimately, when an insured party is injured by either an underinsured or uninsured motorist, they can seek a claim from their insurance. If they are unable to agree on the amount of loss with the insurance company, it is most likely they will have to go to arbitration in order to pursue compensation. Given the stakes of arbitration, the insured party should always seek legal representation. An attorney will be best able to handle the claim and represent the insured-injured party in arbitration, as well as any subsequent bad faith actions against the insurer.   Contact the attorneys at Silva Injury Law if you were injured in an automobile accident and have not been fairly compensated for your damages.  

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| Read Time: 2 minutes | Personal Injury

California Knee and Leg Injury Attorney

People don’t always appreciate the importance of their knees and legs until they are injured in an accident that limits their use. Knee and leg injuries don’t just prevent people from dancing, hiking or taking public transportation, they can make it difficult to get to the bathroom or kitchen, requiring others to take care of them. Knee and leg injuries can range from mild sprains that heal quickly to catastrophic permanent injuries that cause lifelong disability. If you’ve been injured in an accident, it’s important to get the best medical care, and to speak to an experienced California knee and leg injury attorney about collecting money damages for health care, lost earnings, pain, suffering and psychological harm.   Common Traumatic Injuries to the Knee and Leg Knees and legs can be injured from heavy impacts, falling from heights, falling objects, twisting, bending or other types of trauma. These are the most common types of knee and leg injuries from most mild to most severe:   Strains and Sprains: These mild tears in connection tissue usually don’t show up on x-rays or MRI’s. A combination of rest and physical therapy will usually alleviate symptoms within days or weeks. Torn Ligaments: Tears can be very serious, especially tears of the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) and the medial collateral ligament (MCL.) Surgical repair is usually required, and it’s not always possible to restore full mobility. Fractures: Simple fractures can heal quickly with minimal treatment, but more serious fractures can require multiple surgeries and cause prolonged or lifelong disability. Amputations: When a limb is severed from the body due to an accident, it’s called a traumatic amputation. If the limb is found and preserved properly, it might be possible to reattach it. When reattaching a limb isn’t possible, or in cases where damage to the limb necessitates amputation, prosthetics can be considered.   What Types of Accidents Cause Knee and Leg Injuries? Motor vehicle cause the lion’s share of knee and leg injuries, with these accidents accounting for most of the others:   Slip and Fall Accidents Construction Accidents Animal Attacks Swimming Pool Accidents Assaults   In order to collect the highest amount of compensation possible for your leg or knee injury, it’s important to file documents on time and preserve evidence. That’s why it’s important to speak to an experienced California knee and leg injury attorney as soon as possible after your injury.   California Knee and Leg Injury Attorney It’s well-established that accident victims that work with attorneys that have experience with their specific type of case get the best results. Call today for a free consultation.

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| Read Time: 2 minutes | Auto Accidents

Common Back and Neck Injuries After a Car Accident

There are approximately six million car accidents each year in the United States, with three million people injured. Many of these injuries are to the vulnerable structures of the back and neck that can be badly damaged by rapid movements and forceful impacts. If you’ve injured your back or neck in a car accident, it’s important to contact an experienced California car accident attorney that can help you collect the greatest amount of compensation possible for medical expenses, lost wages, pain, suffering and emotional distress.   Symptoms Of Neck and Back Injuries Can Be Subtle At First Heavy impacts from truck accidents can cause catastrophic spinal cord injuries with devastating consequences. If you’re unable to move any part of your body or you experience intense pain, immediate medical attention is a must. On the other hand, milder back and neck injuries may not reveal their severity immediately. It’s not unusual for victims to refuse the ambulance at the scene, only to wake up the next morning with severe stiffness and/or pain in their back and neck. These are some of the symptoms to look out for in the hours and days after a car accident:   Sharp pain that radiates down the arm or leg; Numbness in the arms, hands, legs or feet; Bruising; Swelling; Redness; Inflammation; Headaches; Dizziness and Burning sensations.   If you have any of the symptoms above, it’s important to seek medical attention as soon as possible. It’s also important to speak to an experienced California back and neck injury accident attorney about your legal rights to compensation.   The Importance Of Proper Diagnosis and Treatment X-rays can only diagnose broken and dislocated bones, so when the hospital tells you you don’t have fractures, it’s important to remember that your pain could be caused by a soft tissue injury. Serious soft tissue injuries of the sensitive spinal vertebrae can cause long term pain and disability. That’s why it’s important to have a Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) scan to determine whether or not you’ve sustained herniated or bulging discs if your pain does not subside after a period of physical therapy. An MRI scan can also diagnose soft tissue back and neck injuries such as torn ligaments, inflammation, sprains and tendonitis. Once you have a diagnosis, a treatment plan can be created. If physical therapy, acupuncture, pain management with epidurals and other conservative treatments are not successful, your doctor may want you to consider surgery.   California Back and Neck Injury Accident Attorney Victims that sustain serious back and neck injuries are entitled to compensation from the parties that caused them harm. In order to collect the maximum amount of damages, it’s important to work with a California back and neck injury attorney that has a great deal of experience with this type of case.

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| Read Time: 2 minutes | Liability

California Toxic Mold Lawyer

Mold that grows inside of buildings and homes can be not only harmful to one’s health, it can also cause damage and even destroy the structure of buildings and its contents. The attorneys at Silva Injury Law can represent you in toxic mold cases.   WHAT IS TOXIC MOLD   It is common for mold and mold spores to grow within homes and buildings. Mold is a common component of household dust. There are hundreds of different species of mold throughout the United States which do not pose a threat to humans. However, certain types of mold, commonly known as toxic molds, can be extremely harmful to humans. Stachybotrys, or “black mold” is especially dangerous and can cause a variety of serious health problems.   Potential symptoms of exposure to mold include: Cold and flu-like symptoms Bloody noses Asthma Headaches Pneumonia Skin rashes Allergies Lung damage Chest and joint Pain Liver Disorders   HOW TO CHECK FOR MOLD IN YOUR HOME   In order to grow and spread, mold needs moisture. This necessary moisture can typically come from defective construction, maintenance, and repairs, such as door or window leaks, plumbing leaks, roof leaks, as well as grading or drainage problems. Mold grows in moist and warm areas. Damp basements, closets, bathrooms, wood, ceiling tiles are very common places for mold to grow. The most serious place that mold has a tendency to grow is inside the walls and flooring in homes.  Mold can develop very quickly on water damaged materials, in as few as 24-48 hours.   There are two main ways in which you can test for mold in your building or home. The first, air testing, involves taking air samples through an air pump and petri dish. The sample is then sent to a laboratory to be analyzed. If mold grows on the petri dish, then it can be determined that mold is present in the home. The second method, called bulk testing, involves a variety of tests such as sending mold-laden drywall in a sealed container to a laboratory for analysis, and tape lift sampling.   LITIGATION OF TOXIC MOLD DAMAGES   Exposure to toxic mold can cause a variety of problems, both related damage to health and property. Courts take these issues seriously and will hold the parties responsible for the construction or maintenance of the building where the mold was located. Whether this is in your place of work, your rented apartment, or other property. When mold has been identified, those who have been exposed can be eligible for a claim for compensation for both the physical as well as emotional injuries caused by the exposure.   CONTACT A LAWYER IF YOU HAVE BEEN EXPOSED TO TOXIC MOLD   If you have become sick due to exposure to toxic mold, or have experienced damage to property from mold, an attorney can help you discuss the possible solutions to your situation. An attorney can help you take legal action to hold landlords, builders, sellers, contractors, and other entities responsible for your damages and injuries.   The attorneys at Silva Injury Law are dedicated to advocating for victims. If you have been a victim of mold exposure, please contact us for a free consultation.

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| Read Time: 2 minutes | Auto Accidents

Rear End Car Accident Attorney

According to the Washington Post, there are close to two million rear end collisions each year in the United States, causing over two hundred thousand injuries and deaths. Victims and their families often have huge monetary losses for medical expenses and lost earnings, in addition to pain, suffering and mental anguish that entitle them to compensation. That’s why it’s important to speak to a California rear end accident attorney as soon as possible after the accident to discuss making a claim.   What Types of Injuries Are Common For Rear End Car Accidents? Whiplash is the most common type of injury from rear end car accidents. It’s a neck injury caused by a sudden back and forth motion from the force of an impact, and can vary greatly in severity. Mild cases of whiplash can cause the ligaments and tendons of the neck to stretch or tear, a painful condition can require weeks, months or even years of rehabilitation and disability. Symptoms include pain, stiffness, headaches, dizziness, blurred vision and fatique. Heavy impacts caused by drunk or distracted drivers traveling at a high rate of speed can cause the neck to jerk violently back and forth resulting in traumatic brain injuries and spinal cord injuries with loss of function and/or paralysis. In addition to neck injuries, victims often suffer broken bones, dislocations, head injuries, disfiguring scars and burns. It’s important to speak to a California rear end accident attorney as soon as possible after your accident to determine your legal rights.   What Causes Rear End Accidents? Virtually all rear end accidents are caused by an inattentive driver that hits the car in front of them. It’s common for cars to be hit in the rear while waiting at a red light or in stop and go traffic on the highway. Distracted driving contributes to many rear end crashes, where one or more of the following is a factor:   Eat or drinking; Taking care of children; Smoking; Texting; Speaking on the phone; Talking to passengers; Using a navigation system or a map; Applying make-up and Combing hair.   Some rear end accidents are caused by drivers under the influence of alcohol, drugs or prescription medications. Other causes include faulty brakes, obscured vision due to road design or overgrown foliage, wet or icy roads and road rage.   California Rear End Accident Attorney Victims of rear end accidents are entitled to compensation for out of pocket medical expenses, lost earnings, lost future earning capacity, pain, suffering and mental anguish. In order to collect the highest amount of money damages, it’s important to work with a California rear end accident attorney with experience handling this type of case.

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| Read Time: 2 minutes | Personal Injury

Catastrophic Injury Lawyer in California

Catastrophic injuries can alter the course of an entire family in a split second. It’s hard to imagine spending the rest of your life in a wheelchair, without a sense or with disfiguring scars. This grief extends to all those that care about you. The economic consequences can be devastating, with astronomical out of pocket medical costs and loss of income. Under these circumstances, it’s crucial to collect the highest amount of compensation possible from the responsible parties. That’s why it’s important to hire a catastrophic injury lawyer in California that has a great deal of experience with this type of case.   What are Catastrophic Injuries? Catastrophic injuries are so severe that they drastically impact a person’s ability to be self-sufficient and enjoy life. They may require multiple surgeries, years of rehabilitation and cause long term or permanent disability. These are some examples of catastrophic injuries:   Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBI) can cause irreparable loss of cognitive and motor function due to blunt or penetrating trauma. The most severe TBI can cause paralysis or brain death. Spinal Cord Injuries (SCI) can cause paralysis when spinal vertebrae are crushed, fractured, dislocated or severed. The paralysis will extend from the site of injury downward, causing either quadriplegia or paraplegia. Severe Burns can cause internal injuries, prompt amputations and cause disfiguring scars. Third and fourth degree burns require skin grafting to repair and may require surgery to repair impacted internal organs. Compound fractures occur when the bones shatter and protrude through the skin. In some cases surgical amputation may be required, and in others multiple surgeries may be able to save the limb. Prosthetics are helpful in some by not all cases.   What Types of Accidents Cause Catastrophic Injuries? Most catastrophic injuries are caused by heavy impact motor vehicles accidents including the following:   Head on Collisions Truck Accidents Pedestrian Accidents Bicycle Accidents Motorcycles Accidents   Other types of accidents that cause catastrophic injuries include construction accidents, dangerous products and falls from heights.   How A Catastrophic Injury Lawyer in California Can Help You With the help of an experienced catastrophic injury lawyer in California, you can gain access to the state of the art treatment needed to have the fullest recovery possible by collecting compensation to pay for these services from the responsible parties. It’s possible to predict the cost of medical, rehabilitation, appliances, accommodations and prosthetics for your lifetime and get a settlement or verdict that puts that money in your pocket. You can also collect compensation for your lost earnings or reduced earning capacity throughout your lifetime, which will keep you from being a burden to your family and help you lead the most fulfilling life possible under the circumstances.

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| Read Time: 2 minutes | Negligence

Construction Accident Injury in California

Construction work is one of the most dangerous of all professions. Not only are there frequent accidents, but the injuries sustained are often severe or catastrophic. Construction accident litigation is complicated because it can involve multiple defendants and causes of action. That’s why it’s important to hire a construction accident attorney in California with a great deal of experience with this type of case.   What Causes Construction Accidents? Even when construction companies take all the proper precautions to protect workers, accidents still occur due to the inherently dangerous nature of the work. Here are some examples are common types of construction accidents:   Electrocutions: Frayed wires, faulty connections, inclement weather and other factors cause workers to suffer severe burns that can require weeks, months or even years of medical treatment. Electrocution can also cause neurological damage and other injuries. Falls From Heights: Some of the most severe injuries are caused by falls from ladders, roofs and scaffolding, accounting for close to a quarter of construction accident injuries. Falls from heights can cause spinal cord injuries with paralysis and traumatic brain injuries with loss of cognition. Injuries From Falling Objects: When equipment is improperly secured or workers are negligent, workers below can be injured when objects that fall onto their bodies. The impact from an object can increase exponentially as it falls, causing severe traumatic brain injuries and spinal cord injuries even to workers wearing a hard hat. Explosions and Fires: The use of solvents and other flammable construction materials can result in explosions and fires that cause third or fourth degree burns that can require skin grafting and other extensive surgeries for months or years. Malfunctioning Equipment: Many construction accident injuries are caused by faulty forklifts, dumpsters, cranes, nail guns and other power tools. Accidents are also caused by improper training in the use of equipment. Building and Trench Collapse Accidents: Many catastrophic or fatal injuries are caused by sudden collapses of buildings that are under construction or being prepared for demolition. Trenches that are built by workers to begin the construction process sometimes cave in, causing serious injuries.   Construction Accidents Are Complicated Due to the severe, catastrophic or fatal nature of many construction accidents, it’s necessary for construction accident attorneys in California to identify every possible defendant in order to collect the large amounts of money needed to fully compensate victims. For example, a forklift accident could have many responsible parties such as:   The driver of the forklift, who may or may not be employed by the same company as the injured worker; The manufacturer of the forklift that could be responsible for a defective design or manufacturing process; The mechanic that last inspected or repaired the forklift or A company that provided training for the forklift driver.   In order to successfully investigate and prosecute the responsible parties, a construction accident injury attorney in California must have a great deal of experience with this type of case.

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| Read Time: 2 minutes | Negligence

Amputation and Limb Loss Caused by Negligence in California

The loss of an arm or a leg in an accident is one of the greatest tragedies imaginable. Even with modern medicine’s ability to provide highly functional  prosthetics, it’s a life changing adjustment that will require many years of medical treatment and rehabilitation. Loss of a limb can necessitate a change in career or cause permanent disability. These injuries also precipitate emotional and psychiatric problems such as post traumatic stress syndrome (PTSD.) That’s why it’s important to hire an experienced California amputation and limb loss attorney with the experience that knows how to collect the large amounts of compensation you deserve for this type of case.   What Causes Amputations and Limb Loss? There are two types of amputations – traumatic and surgical. A traumatic amputation occurs when the limb is detached due to an accident. In some cases it’s possible to reattach the limb if it is in good enough condition and immediately taken with the victim to a high quality trauma facility. In other cases, a limb must be amputated surgically because it is too severely damaged to be saved. These are some examples of the types of accidents that cause traumatic and surgical amputations:   Heavy impact head on collisions and rollovers; Pedestrians, motorcyclists and bicyclists; Construction accidents such as falling from heights and using heavy machinery; Explosions, fires and fireworks and Defective products.   These accidents can cause traumatic amputations as victims are thrown from vehicles or crushed under heavy machinery. Third and fourth degree burns can cause such severe destruction to a limb that surgical amputation is required. Improvements in technology often make a properly fitting prosthesis more helpful than damaged or reattached body parts, but even with successful reattachments and prosthetics, the road to recovery is long and difficult.   Amputation and Limb Loss Cause Huge Economic and Non-Economic Losses The economic losses for amputation and limb loss can be astronomical. The initial hospitalization, multiple surgeries, years of rehabilitation, plus the purchase, maintenance and replacement of prosthetics are just part of the costs. Years of disability and retraining can cause large amounts of lost earnings, and there is almost always a detrimental impact on future earning capacity. In addition to these calculable costs, victims are entitled to compensation for the very substantial pain, suffering and mental anguish they’ve endured. Amputation and limb loss victims can also receive monetary damages for the loss of enjoyment of life due to activities they can no longer enjoy such as running, dancing, drawing or cooking.   California Amputation and Limb Loss Attorney If you or somebody you care about has suffered has lost a limb due to the negligence, recklessness or intentional act of another person, it’s important to speak to an experienced California amputation and limb loss attorney that knows how to collect a large amount of compensation.

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| Read Time: 2 minutes | Auto Accidents

Cell Phone Car Accident Injury Attorney

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA,) distracted driving is a factor in close to ten percent of fatal accidents in the United States. Many of those crashes are caused by drivers using cell phones to speak, text or play online games. Victims often suffer from severe or catastrophic injuries and face large medical costs and earnings losses. That’s why it’s important to call an experienced California cell phone car accident injury attorney as soon as possible after an accident to begin the process of collecting the compensation you’re entitled to.   Distracted Driving Is A Leading Cause of Fatal Accidents According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA,) close to ten percent of fatal crashes in the United States each year are caused by distracted drivers. There are many different types of distractions that can lead to accidents such as:   Electronic Devices; Pets; Children; Using a GPS; Eating and Drinking; Grooming; Adjusting climate control; Talking to Passengers and Rubbernecking   The number one cause of fatal accidents due to distracted driving is using a cell phone. The National Safety Council (NSC) reports that cell phone use while driving causes over a million and a half accidents each year and that one in four crashes is caused by texting while driving.   Using a Cell Phone While Driving Is More Dangerous Than You Think It’s obvious that taking your eyes off the road to text or play a video game while driving might cause an accident, but cell phone use can be extremely dangerous even when handsfree. The United States Department of Transportation reports that talking on cellphones can impede driver’s reaction time equivalent to the impairment from a blood alcohol reading that would determine intoxication. That’s also why accidents caused by using cell phones are more likely to cause severe, catastrophic or fatal injuries.   California Laws For Using Cell Phones While Driving The state of California has been extremely proactive about protecting people from the hazards of using cell phones while driving. The laws are strict and subject to heavy fines that increase with subsequent infractions. Repeat offenders that cause injuries can find themselves without a driver’s license or even in jail. These are the most important laws:   California bans composing, sending or reading text messages while driving, even if stopped at a light or still in traffic. California bans using handheld phones while driving, but does allow the use of speakerphones for drivers over age eighteen. Drivers under the age of eighteen may not use a cell phone while driving, even a handsfree speakerphone, unless it is an emergency call.   It’s not always easy to prove that a person was using a cellphone while driving. That’s why it’s important for people that are injured by these negligent drivers to hire a California cell phone car accident injury attorney that knows exactly how to handle these cases.

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