Personal Injury

Have you or a loved one been injured as a result of negligence of another person or business?. If so, you have come to the right place!
No one ever expects to be involved in a car accident, but if you are, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries and losses.

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The Law Offices of Kathleen G. Alvarado strive to provide compassionate representation to our clients while providing forceful and aggressive advocacy. We will do everything possible under the law to achieve maximum recovery in your case. At the same time we understand and appreciate that this may be one of the most difficult times of your life and we will do everything we can to protect you from the emotional, physical and financial stresses of the legal process.

We handle all Personal Injury matters on a contingency fee basis. This means you only pay for our services once we successfully win your case or reach a settlement.

• We have the experience to successfully litigate any type of personal injury case you may have.
• Never Any Fees Unless We Win For You!

PERSONAL INJURY PRACTICE AREAS:

• car_accidentAutomobile Accidents
• Motorcycle Accidents
• Truck Accidents
• Bicycle vs. Motor Vehicle Accidents
• Pedestrian vs. Motor Vehicle Accidents
• Slip and Fall Accidents
• Medical Malpractice
• Dental Malpractice
• Catastrophic Injury Accidents
• Bus Accidents
• Train Accidents

ECONOMIC RECOVERY FOR ACCIDENTS AND INJURIES:

If you have been injured in an accident, you may be entitled to receive economic recovery from those who are at fault.  The amount recovered will depend on the type of damages that are directly related to the accident.  In some cases, family members may also be entitled to recover to the extent that your injuries affected their relationship with you.

THE FOLLOWING ARE TYPICAL DAMAGES FOR WHICH ECONOMIC COMPENSATION IS AVAILABLE IN PERSONAL INJURY CASES:

• Special damages.  Compensation for out-of-pocket expenses that can be determined by adding together all the actual financial losses related to the accident.  These are damages that must be proved with specificity.

• Medical Expenses. Bills and expenses for medical treatment following the accident such as doctors, hospital stays, emergency room, ambulance, diagnostic tests, and nursing services. A plaintiff must show that the expenses are related to medical conditions resulting from the accident.

• Future medical expenses: If the injured plaintiff proves that they will need continued medical care as a result of the accident, then future medical expenses are permitted. Proof must be sufficient so a jury can estimate the cost.car_accident4

• General damages. It may be difficult to calculate the amount of money needed to compensate an injured person for general damages. Often this involves placing a dollar amount to a subjective injury. Injuries such as mental anguish, embarrassment, and loss of enjoyment of life are unique to each plaintiff. Factors that help determine a damage award include severity/gruesomeness of the injury, attorney’s skills, and the sensitivities of the jury. These damages cannot be proved with any clear specificity, but are awarded based on the fact that they normally follow from an accident or injury.

• Pain and Suffering. An award for past and future physical pain in connection with an accident or injury. To place a monetary value on pain and suffering, the jury considers the nature of the injury, the certainty of future pain, its severity, and how long the plaintiff is likely to be in pain. Some states allow the jury to assume that if a bodily injury has occurred there has been some pain and suffering, and some require that the plaintiff be conscious for some time period during the injury.

• Lost income and Diminished earning capacity: After an accident, plaintiff may be entitled to lost income that is attributed to the injury suffered. In addition, a plaintiff may claim for diminished earning capacity by proving that their ability to earn money in the future has been impaired as a result of injuries suffered in the accident. The focus is on what would have been earned were it not for the injuries and accident. Past earnings, age, health, occupation, skills, and training are factors that help determine the amount of compensation to claim.

• Loss of consortium.  Deprivation of the benefits of married life after suffering injuries in an accident.  These benefits include affection, solace, comfort, companionship, society, help and assistance, and sexual relations between spouses. The uninjured spouse makes the claim and his or her financial recovery depends on whether the injured spouse recovers any damages.  A value is placed on this loss by considering the couple’s life expectancies, stability of the marriage, the extent to which the benefits of married life have been lost.

• Loss of society and companionship.  In wrongful death cases, loss of society and companionship damages represent the positive benefits that flow from the love, comfort, companionship, and closeness that the immediate family members would have enjoyed had the decedent lived. The jury will consider how harmonious the relationship was, their living arrangements, common interests and activities, and whether there were extended separations.

• Disfigurement.  When a person is disfigured or deformed by scars, dismemberment, or other injuries that permanently change the personal appearance of the injured person, they may be able to collect damages for mental suffering that arises due to awareness of the disfigurement

• Household Services.  Plaintiff may be entitled to recovery of the cost of hiring someone to do work around the house while recovering from the injuries suffered in the accident.

• Mental Anguish. Any mental suffering or emotional distress associated with an accident or injury, including fright, terror, apprehension, nervousness, anxiety, worry, humiliation, mortification, feeling of lost dignity, embarrassment, grief, and shock.

• Permanent Disability. These damages are best proved by medical testimony, and ordinarily a doctor must examine a plaintiff claiming permanent disability. Some courts have held that permanent disability damages can include not only disabilities that are objectively determined, but also disabilities that the plaintiff subjectively perceives.

• Present Cash Value. The current value of projected future earnings; the amount that, if invested wisely, will over time produce the amount the plaintiff would have earned had he or she not been injured.

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INJURIES FROM MOTOR VEHICLE ACCIDENTS CAN BE SERIOUS AND MAY INCLUDE:

car_accident2 Broken, Dislocated, or Fractured Bones
• Abrasions, Cuts and Bruises
• Severed Limbs
• Injuries to Your Neck and Back
• Whiplash and/or Disc Herniation
• Spinal Cord Injury
• Traumatic Brain Injury
• Physical Disfigurement and Scars
• Burn Injuries
• Death

WHAT TO DO AFTER AN ACCIDENT

When you meet with your attorney regarding your personal injury matter, you will be asked to explain the events leading to your injuries.  It is helpful to bring all available documents related to the accident to the meeting.  The length of the meeting will depend on how complex your case is and the degree of injury suffered.

As you talk about your accident, your attorney may ask questions.  Some of these questions may be difficult to answer.  Please keep in mind, your lawyer needs to know the answers in order to help you find the best solution for your case. Your lawyer will collect a variety of information relating to your accident or injury, including facts about your medical treatment, others involved in the accident, potential witnesses, and more. She will likely also discuss practical aspects of your case such as a representation agreement, legal fees, and the costs you can expect in your case.

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Here is an idea of what you can expect during your first meeting with an attorney:

  • The lawyer may ask you to sign a Retainer Agreement, a form authorizing the release of your medical information from health care providers so we can obtain medical records on your behalf.
  • The lawyer will want to know about your insurance coverage.
  • The lawyer will ask if you have talked to any insurance adjustors and if so, what you have said and whether you provided a recorded or written statement about the accident or injury.
  • You will be asked to describe the current status of your injuries — whether you are in pain, what your prognosis is, etc.  You will also be asked to describe medical treatment received since the accident.  You may be asked to return to the doctor for further treatment depending on degree of injury and whether you have lingering pain.
  • The lawyer will tell you what the next steps are. There may be a factual investigation before a lawsuit is filed or settlement is considered, and the lawyer may be able to give you a rough estimate of how long it will take to resolve the case.
  • The lawyer will tell you not to talk about the case with others, and that you should refer questions to our office.  This is very important. Loose lips can ruin your case in the courtroom.

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