Traumatic Brain Injury and Negligence | Auto Accident Attorney in Indianapolis

A traumatic brain injury (TBI) occurs when any external, physical force damages the brain.  A football concussion, hitting your head after a bad fall, and a rotational injury without direct impact to the head—typically seen in severe whiplash cases—all constitute TBIs.

What is a TBI and how do I recognize traumatic brain injury?Call personal injury and accident lawyer Charlie Ward today for a free consultation

As our understanding of the brain improves, we have come to understand that you can have a severe TBI even without losing consciousness.  Common causes of TBIs include:

  • Slip and fall injuries in which you hit your head
  • Motor vehicle accidents, including accidents in which you do not hit your head but experience whiplash
  • Anything falling on your head from almost any height
    Assaults
  • Falls from bicycles, motorcycles, and horses, particularly if you do not wear a helmet

After any motor vehicle accident or blow to the head, remain on the alert for early signs of a possible head injury.  These include:

  • Unusual disorientation
  • Confusion about the passage of time—it either passes much too slowly or much too quickly
  • Lost periods of time
  • Any other short-term memory difficulties
  • Unexplained vomiting
  • Olfactory hallucinations and other disturbances to your sense of smell, e.g. food simply not tasting right, or smelling like some other food
  • Any disturbance in your visual field, including flashes of light that no one else sees and unusual motion or blurriness in your peripheral vision
  • Persistent fatigue, both immediately after the injury and a few days later
  • Sleep disturbances
    If you have any of these symptoms and recently hit your head—even if you never lost consciousness—or suffered whiplash of any sort, consult with a physician immediately.  Some head injuries result in coma or concussion and are immediately apparent, while others take a bit longer for symptoms to appear.

What should I do if I think I might have a head injury?

See a doctor immediately!  Reach out to the Brain Injury Association of Indiana (or the Brain Injury Association in your state) for referrals, advice, and support.  And if your head injury resulted from someone else’s negligence—common examples include motor vehicle accidents, hazardous property conditions, and intentional misconduct like physical violence—contact an Indianapolis head injury lawyer right away.

Getting legal help

Unlike simply breaking a leg or bruising an arm, most TBIs unfortunately become permanent conditions with life-long effects.  You need an Indianapolis head injury attorney who knows and understands TBI injuries and patients, and knows how to get you as much compensation for your injury, long-term medical needs, and pain and suffering as possible.

If you or a loved one recently suffered a head injury, the personal injury attorneys at Ward & Ward can help ensure that you receive fair and full compensation for your injuries.  Attorneys at Ward & Ward invite you to contact them as soon as possible to arrange a free initial consultation about your case, by phone at 888-316-3449, through their website, or simply by visiting their conveniently-located Indianapolis office.

Graduated Driver’s License Laws Meant to Reduce Teen Accidents

Incremental Driving Privileges for Teenagers

Call personal injury and accident lawyer Charlie Ward today for a free consultation

Almost every parent knows that “pit in the stomach” feeling when they hand the car keys over to their newly licensed teenage son or daughter who is about to solo on the road for the first time. Somewhere in between adolescence and adulthood our children grow up and we have to build their confidence by displaying our trust in their good judgment. Fortunately for parents and young drivers alike, many states are moving into new laws which require everyone learning to drive under the age of eighteen, earn driving privileges incrementally.

For example, in Indiana beginning drivers under the age of 18 receive what’s called a “Probationary Drivers Permit”, also known as the Graduated Driver’s License. IC 9-24-11-3 was passed into law and became effective on July 1st, 2009.

Some restrictions include:

|Driving curfews unless traveling to or from work, school, or a religious event and accompanied by a licensed adult 25 years or older;

|Driving with passenger restrictions; and

|Restrictions on the use of cell phones.

As the minor approaches his or her eighteenth birthday, some restrictions gradually ease although Indiana’s curfew laws remain in effect until the minor reaches the age of majority. The use of cell phones while driving is prohibited under the graduated license law, unless an emergency 911 call needs to be made. You can read a brief overview of Indiana’s graduated driver’s license here.

The CDC states on their website that the accident risk for drivers sixteen to nineteen is four times higher than older drivers. With this in mind, why did it take so many years before states implemented the graduated driver’s license?

Ward & Ward, Experienced Personal Injury Attorneys

If you recently lost a loved one due to the negligent actions of someone else, the wrongful death attorneys at Ward & Ward can help ensure that you do not suffer needless financial distress in addition to
mourning your tragic loss. The law firm of Ward & Ward has over 80 years of experience in wrongful death claims, auto accident, motorcycle accident, trucking accident, and injuries associated with semi tractor-trailer accidents. Ward & Ward invite you to contact them as soon as possible to arrange a
free initial consultation about your case, by phone at 317-639-9501, through their website at wardlawfirm.com, or simply by visiting their conveniently-located downtown Indianapolis office.

Charlie Ward

Ward & Ward Law Firm
728 S Meridian St
Indianapolis, IN 46225
(317) 639-9501

www.wardlawfirm.com

Teenage Drivers at Risk For Driving Accident Fatalities

Newly Licensed Teens More Likely to Crash than Older Drivers

Call personal injury and accident lawyer Charlie Ward today for a free consultation

Recently, I was motivated to obtain statistics on crash fatalities involving teen drivers ages 16 to 20. I found the disappointing statistics that I more or less expected to find; i.e. teens within the age range of 16-20 experienced a disproportionately high number of fatal crashes over every other age group sampled. According to the Center for Disease Control, teen drivers ages 16 to 19 are four times more likely than older drivers to crash. That’s a dizzying statistic and the reason that many parents dread the day their children begin driving.

The highest risk factors involved in teen driving crashes:

    1. Male teen drivers and passengers are twice as likely as their female counterparts to die in a motor vehicle accident;
    2. Teens driving teens without adult supervision increases the crash risk; the greater the number of teens in the car, the higher the risk; and

The inherent risk is especially high for teenagers within the first year after they start driving due to a disadvantageous lack of experience and judgment skills.

The graduated driver’s license addresses many risk issues

Indiana has enacted its own brand of the graduated driver’s license popularized by so many states across the country. Beginning July 1, 2009, Indiana law, IC 9-24-11-3, provided for a minor’s ‘probationary’ driver’s license with certain named restrictions for all teens under the age of 18.

Restrictions on the Probationary Driver’s License

A quick look at Indiana’s probationary driver’s license restrictions include:

  1. Minors may not use any type of telecommunication device while driving except to make emergency 911 calls;
  2. For the first 180 days after getting a probationary license, minors under the age of 18 may not drive between 10pm and 5am;
  3. After 180 days, minors may not drive between the hours of 11 p.m. and 5 a.m. on the Sunday through Thursday;
  4. After 180 days, minors may not drive on Friday and Saturday between the hours of 1 a.m. and 5 a.m;
  5. Drivers under the age of 18 are permitted to drive at any time if traveling to or from work, school, or a religious event or if accompanied by an individual with a valid Indiana’s driver’s license who is 25 years or older;
  6. Driving with passengers is restricted for the first 180 days after obtaining a probationary minor’s license unless the minor is accompanied by a licensed instructor, an individual with a valid Indiana driver’s license who is 25 years or older, or a parent, guardian, or step-parent who is 21 years or older.  A minor may drive with their child, sibling or spouse during the hours allowed by law.
  7. Holder’s of probationary driver’s license will not qualify for court diversion programs.

Restrictions Diminish Over Time

Driving restrictions begin to fall away, gradually allowing more and more responsibility as confidence in judgment increases, and as the minor approaches his or her 18th birthday. At the age of 18, the individual may amend the probationary license removing the probationary designation from the license, but once the driver reaches 18, the probationary restrictions no longer apply even if the license is designated “probationary.” An individual who holds a probationary license may receive an operator’s license, chauffeur’s license, a public passenger chauffeur’s license, or a commercial driver’s license when the individual is at least 18 years of age. In most cases, this probationary driver’s license would expire by midnight, 30 days after the twenty-first birthday of the holder.

If you anticipate your child will be receiving their probationary license soon, you can obtain a FREE Graduated Driving Toolkit here.

Skilled and seasoned Indianapolis personal injury attorneys working to protect your rights

If you recently lost a loved one due to the negligent actions of someone else, the wrongful death attorneys at Ward & Ward can help ensure that you do not suffer needless financial distress in addition to mourning your tragic loss.  The law firm of Ward & Ward has over 80 years of experience in wrongful death claims, auto accident, motorcycle accident, trucking accident, and injuries associated with semi tractor-trailer accidents. Ward & Ward invite you to contact them as soon as possible to arrange a free initial consultation about your case, by phone at 317-639-9501, through their website at wardlawfirm.com, or simply by visiting their conveniently-located downtown Indianapolis office.

 

DISCLAIMER: The information provided on this website or web sites linked herein are not a substitute for professional medical or legal advice, diagnosis or treatment. In addition, viewing the content on these websites, requesting additional information, or transmitting information through a contact form does not form an attorney-client relationship with the sponsoring attorney. Any results set forth herein are based upon the facts of that particular case or scientific study and do not represent a promise or guaranty regarding similar outcome or causes. The information on this site is intended for educational purposes only and should never interfere with a patient/site visitor and his or her healthcare provider or attorney. Internet subscribers or online readers should not act upon any information contained herein without seeking professional legal and/or medical advice. This firm is licensed to practice law only in the state of Indiana, but is affiliated with a network of licensed attorneys in other states. Call 911 for all medical emergencies. Ward & Ward law firm makes no representation or warranty regarding the accuracy, reliability, completeness, or timeliness of the content, text or graphics. Links to other sites are provided for information only they do not constitute endorsements or a professional relationship with those other sites.

Personal Injury Attorney from Indiana Shows an Increase in Auto Liability Insurance Coverage Costs Only Pennies a Day

Obtain several quotes for liability insurance coverage

The more insurance you buy, the cheaper it is

Call personal injury and accident lawyer Charlie Ward today for a free consultation

The next time you evaluate your automobile insurance policy, I would recommend seeking a quote for a higher level of liability coverage. For instance, if you currently have $100,000/$300,000 liability coverage, ask your agent to quote the $250,000/$500,000 coverage. You may find that the additional coverage may cost you only pennies a day.

A recent survey conducted in Indianapolis exposed that each tier increase of auto liability insurance for a driver with a good record amounted to a significant reduction in the price per unit of coverage. For example, liability coverage for $250,000/$500,000 was reduced by 75% per unit—a tremendous savings— and the result of buying quantity.

 

Why would you need that much coverage?

The figures $250,000/$500,000 mean the insurance company will pay up to the limits of $250,000 per person but not exceeding $500,000 for all persons injured per accident. Consider a person
injured in an automobile, motorcycle or truck accident where that person is catastrophically injured, permanently disabled or a wrongful death occurs as a result of an error in judgment. Catastrophic injuries, including brain and spine injuries can easily mount and exceed the limits of a $250,000 per person,
per accident. Or consider the death of a family breadwinner and a lifetime loss of economic earnings for their family. A $250,000/$500,000 policy is not an excessive amount of insurance, particularly if you have personal assets to protect.

 

The price of medical payment coverage also decreases with an increase in limits. In the same survey it was discovered that doubling the standard $5,000 med-pay coverage to $10,000, cost less than 11? per month or 67? for a 6-month policy.

 

The Indiana Department of Insurance regulates insurance companies selling and administering policies in the State of Indiana. Consumer questions or disputes with an insurance company are handled by the Indiana Department of Insurance. Visit their site for more information.

Experienced personal injury attorneys recommend you buy as much insurance as you can afford

If you or someone you know has been injured in a motor vehicle accident, it’s important to speak with an experienced personal injury attorney as soon as possible. The law firm of Ward & Ward has over 80 years of combined experience in personal injury law including accident and wrongful
death claims. Our firm receives no legal fees or expenses unless we collect damages on your behalf. Call Charlie Ward today at 317-639-9501 for a free evaluation of your claim. Our attorneys are available to speak with you.

 

Charlie Ward

Ward & Ward Law Firm
728 S Meridian St
Indianapolis, IN 46225
 (317) 639-9501

 

www.wardlawfirm.com

Three Incentives for Purchasing Car, Motorcycle and Trucking Accident Liability Insurance Coverage from an Independent Agent

Advantages of Working With an Independent Agency

Call personal injury and accident lawyer Charlie Ward today for a free consultation

  1. Independent agencies have their finger on the pulse of the insurance industry and a diverse selection of carriers.
  2. Independent agents sell policies from an array of provider companies; this gives them the ability to showcase the best policies with the most economical rates suiting their clients’ needs.
  3. Independent agents are free from the branding entanglements of mega-insurance corporations and can focus their attention on developing client relationships and protecting client assets.

An insurance policy that protects your exposure in the event of a car, motorcycle, bicycle, pedestrian or semi tractor-trailer accident is a significant purchase. An independent agent will “shop around” for you, comparing options for responsive customer service, rates, limits, terms and exclusions. On their website, the Indiana Department of Insurance states:

“Selecting good auto insurance is important…You may choose from companies which have local or non local agents. The services of the local agent may be of importance when you buy the policy or when you have a claim. Agents can be ‘captive’ to only one insurance company or ‘independent’ and represent several companies. It is better to talk with more than one agent and more than one company while researching auto insurance.”

Accident or personal injury lawyers frequently work with insurance policies and insurance claims specialists to resolve disputes. And though an attorney cannot recommend an insurance company or policy. I’m available to discuss liability coverage as it relates to the law.

If you or someone you know has been injured in an accident, it’s important to speak with an experienced personal injury attorney as soon as possible. The law firm of Ward & Ward has over 80 years of combined experience in personal injury law including auto, motorcycle, bicycle, pedestrian, trucking accident and wrongful death claims. Our firm receives no legal fees or expenses unless we collect damages on your behalf. Call Charlie Ward today at 317-639-9501 for a free evaluation of your claim. Our attorneys are available to speak with you.

 

Increase Your Liability Insurance Coverage for Personal Protection against Auto, Motorcycle, Bicycle, Pedestrian and Trucking or Semi Tractor Trailer Accident Claims

Cheap Car Insurance

Call personal injury and accident lawyer Charlie Ward today for a free consultation

If you’ve ever heard me discuss buying auto accident liability insurance, you probably know that I personally recommend buying as much as you can afford—not because I have a desire to enrich the financial statements of insurance carriers, but because protecting you, your family and others unknown whom you may encounter on the road in an unexpected auto, motorcycle, bicycle or trucking accident is the right thing to do. And it costs only a few pennies more a day to acquire a policy that will adequately provide for the medical and economic needs of a catastrophically injured party or parties should the need arise.

How much does a good automobile insurance policy cost?

The purchase of bulk goods or commodities triggers a reduction in the price-per-unit cost. Auto liability insurance is no different. A recent central Indiana survey obtained in December of 2011, demonstrates my point:

A potential customer with a good-driving record, insuring a C-1500 pick-up truck for pleasurable use by self and spouse, received the following 6-month policy quote from an independent agent:

Limits Liab. Diff Prop
Dam
$5000
MedPay
Unins
Bod
Inj
Unins
Prop
Dam
TOTAL
(6 Mos)
Diff
Total Policy
50/100 67 46 *9 14 4 140
100/300 79 +12 48 *9 19 4 159 +19
250/500 86 +7 48 *9 24 4 171 +12

*Note: $10,000 worth of med-pay coverage is $13.00 (Diff. +$4 p/6-mo) – See my comments on purchasing Medical Payment Insurance Coverage

 Cost per Unit Analysis (Liability Coverage Only)

  1. The cost for initial 50,000/100,000 “liability only” coverage is approximately $1.34/67¢ per unit (a unit is one-thousand dollars of coverage);
  2. The next tier, 100,000/300,000, reduces the cost per unit to 79¢/26.4¢; and
  3. The next higher tier, 250,000/500,000 reduces the cost further to 34.4¢/17.2¢ per unit.

 Daily Cost Differential

  1.  The cost difference between the 50/100 and 100/300 full-coverage policy (as illustrated above) is 10.6¢ a day;
  2. The cost difference between 100/300 and 250/500 is an increase of approximately 6.7¢ per day;
  3.  The total cost difference between 50/100 and 250/500 is a total increase of 17.3¢ per day.

Indiana’s $25,000 minimum insurance requirement is not enough!

Indiana lawmakers have mandated the minimum amount of liability insurance required to legally drive in the State of Indiana to be $25,000. However, the medical bills generated from an accident involving one traumatically injured person can rapidly consume and far surpass the $25,000 minimum legal liability limits in less than a single 24 hour period. Maximizing your liability insurance protects you and it helps others who, through no fault of their own, are recovering from injuries, disabilities and economic hardship caused by auto, motorcycle and tractor-trailer accidents. You can learn more about auto accident liability insurance limits by visiting the website of the Indiana Department of Insurance.

Experienced personal injury Lawyers

If you or someone you know has been injured in a motor vehicle accident, it’s important to speak with an experienced personal injury attorney as soon as possible. The law firm of Ward & Ward has over 80 years of combined experience in personal injury law including accident and wrongful death claims. Our firm receives no legal fees or expenses unless we collect damages on your behalf. Call Charlie Ward today at 317-639-9501 for a free evaluation of your claim. Our attorneys are available to speak with you.