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Category: Social Security

Filing a Personal Injury Claim for a Brain Injury

Filing a Personal Injury Claim for a Brain Injury

Brain injuries can vary widely and include everything from mild concussions to severe injuries that impact your ability to function. If you believe another party is responsible for a brain injury you’ve suffered, you may want to take legal action.

 

For a Brain Injury

Things can be somewhat complicated when it comes to brain injuries. Signs of brain injury can sometimes take time to become apparent, and there may be no external signs of injury, making them more difficult to detect. For example, oxygen deprivation can damage the brain, though there may be no visible signs. Medical malpractice may also result in brain injuries that are not immediately obvious. Also, concussions can cause permanent damage.

 

For these reasons, those who suffer brain injuries are sometimes reluctant to take legal action. But the truth is, you may be entitled to receive damages as compensation for your injury.

 

As with any personal injury claim, you will need to demonstrate that another party is legally liable for your injury, either through their actions or their negligence. If they are deemed liable, you will be eligible to receive damages in an amount determined by the court. Learn more about personal injury cases here and here.

 

The process of gathering documentation to support your claim can be quite involved and having the assistance of an experienced legal representative is critical.

 

Contact Us

If you have suffered a brain injury and would like to determine whether you may be eligible to receive compensation, then contact our team of West Virginia personal injury attorneys anytime at 877.526.3457. Or if you’d prefer to contact us online, please fill out this form and we will respond right away.

Golden Apple Award

Golden Apple

Congratulations to Kim White, Our Latest Golden Apple Winner!

 

Here at Jan Dils, we do our best to recognize those in our local community who are having a positive impact. Our Golden Apple Award honors outstanding local educators, and we’re pleased to recognize Kim White as our latest recipient.

 

Kim is a first grade teacher at Madison Elementary here in Parkersburg. She has been a teacher for 28 years, with the last eight being at Madison.

 

When asked what makes her students special, White replied “They want to learn…They’re loving and caring. School is their favorite place to come to, and when they come in each morning, they’re happy to see me.”

 

White went on to explain that her advice to a new teacher would be, “to stick with it. Yeah, you’re going to have hard years, but the good years outshine the rest by far and you’re going to make lifelong learners.”

 

She noted that some of the children she taught in elementary school years ago are now teachers in the local school system themselves.

 

Regarding the Golden Apple Award, White said, “I’ve seen it on TV and I always thought, ‘Wow, that’s really nice that a student or family has thought that much of their teacher to make that effort. It means a lot to me…and especially because it’s a parent who notices [my work], that’s very important to me.”

 

Congratulations to Kim, we here at the firm appreciate all of your hard work!

Golden Apple Family

Talking to Your Parents About Their Disability Claim

Talking to Your Parents About Their Disability Claim

Talking to your parents about applying for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits is important, as they may not be aware of what they are entitled to under law. They need to know that the SSDI program is there to pay benefits and support to those who are unable to work due to a medical condition that is expected to last at least one year and it must be significant enough to impair their ability to do basic work like lifting, standing, sitting and remembering important information. What’s more, the process can be complicated and they may need to hire an attorney to represent their case before an administrative law judge (ALJ).

It’s important to keep in mind that when a parent becomes disabled, they need to apply for SSDI as soon as they become disabled. Since the application processing time may take three to five months or maybe more, depending on the nature of the case, applying early can help save time and money. The Motley Fool lists the specific categories of medical ailments which the SSA considers severe enough to allow an individual to qualify for benefits:

  • Special Senses and Speech
  • The Musculoskeletal System
  • Respiratory Disorders
  • The Cardiovascular System
  • The Digestive System
  • Genitourinary Disorders
  • Hematological Disorders
  • Skin Disorders
  • Endocrine Disorders
  • Congenital Disorders that Affect Multiple Body Systems
  • Neurological Disorders
  • Mental Disorders
  • Cancer (Malignant Neoplastic Diseases)
  • Immune System Disorders

They also explain that chronic conditions like heart failure, according to the SSA, must be accompanied by medical proof defining whether it is systolic or diastolic in nature. If your parents suffer from another disabling chronic condition which isn’t listed, you’ll need to help them provide documentation that prove the symptoms are as severe as those exhibited by sufferers of the 14 conditions listed above.

Should one or both of your parents suffer from a chronic condition, they will be joining the millions of Americans who suffer from one or more chronic illnesses across the country. A joint research study on chronic disease in the U.S. by Fordham University in New York, and published in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, indicated that over 45%, or roughly 133 million Americans, suffer from at least one chronic ailment. The number of chronic conditions continues to grow and is the nations’ leading cause of death. In addition, Maryville University predicts that by 2025 chronic illness will affect an estimated 164 million Americans, almost half the population. Additionally, with an aging population, the increasing costs of chronic diseases account for nearly 75% of healthcare spending or an estimated $5,300 per person annually. It’s therefore important that your discussion with your parents about their SSDI application makes them aware of the costs of medicare resulting from their disability.

Remember the SSA has very strict criteria and definitions when it comes to disability and it’s a good idea to help your parents hire an attorney, especially if their condition isn’t specifically mentioned in the SSA’s listing of impairments. A disability legal representative can increase their chances of being approved for disability benefits and will only be paid if their claim is approved.

We can help with many aspects of SSDI cases, including Substitution of Party claim by the surviving family of the deceased. While it may seem like a daunting process to both you and your parents, careful planning and preparation can help you qualify for disability benefits.

 

Content written for jandils.com

By Alaska Sanchez

What Do I Need to Know About Ticket to Work?

What Do I Need to Know About Ticket to Work?

If you are a recipient of Social Security disability benefits, you may be unsure as to whether you are permitted to work while receiving those benefits. The short answer is yes, with stipulations placed on the income you may receive via the Ticket to Work program.  If you receive Social Security disability and would like to return to work, this program is ideal for you.

 

What is Ticket to Work, and how does it benefit those looking for work?

 

Under the program, recipients of Social Security disability benefits are issued a “Ticket” they can use to receive free services that will help them prepare to return to work. When the Ticket is redeemed, the Social Security Administration pays the provider of those services (assuming the provider has been approved) on behalf of the disability recipient.

 

Service providers are referred to as Employment Networks (EN), and they can be employers, agencies or individuals. Basically, they are any public or private entity (besides federal agencies) capable of providing services that can help a Social Security disability recipient prepare to return to the workforce.

 

Once you and an EN have decided to work together, and you’ve chosen to apply your Ticket to the services they offer, you will be expected to make “timely progress” toward your career goals. Whether that means receiving additional education or completing a vocational training program, for example, you will be asked to demonstrate that you are closer to reducing or eliminating your dependence on Social Security disability benefits.

 

Contact Us

 

The Social Security Administration offers free webinars that will teach you more about how to get started with Ticket to Work. If you would like to learn more about filing a Social Security disability claim, contact us anytime at 877.526.3457, and one of our representatives will be happy to answer your questions. Or if you’d prefer to contact us online, please fill out this form and we will respond to you shortly.

What To Do If You’re a Pedestrian Injured by a Vehicle

What To Do If You’re a Pedestrian Injured by a Vehicle

If you’re injured by a vehicle, the period immediately afterward can be difficult and stressful. What are the most important steps to take? Should you seek legal recourse? Read on to learn more.

At the Scene

 Before you leave the location where the accident happened, there are a couple of  things you’ll want to do to strengthen your argument should you decide to pursue legal action: take photos of the scene of the accident and the vehicle, and take down the names of any witnesses.

Medical Treatment

 You should only do the above if you’re not in any medical danger after the accident. Otherwise, you will want to seek medical attention immediately. Even if you are not feeling like you were severely injured, it is a good idea to visit a doctor to be sure there are no injuries of which you’re unaware. If the accident occurred in a no-fault state, your insurance will likely cover some of the medical expense. If it did not occur in a no-fault state, it’s possible the driver’s medical insurer will handle some of the costs.

Should You Make a Claim Against the Driver?

 How can you assess whether you want to file a personal injury claim against the driver of the vehicle? To answer that, you will need to determine how likely it is that the driver could be considered negligent – that is, that your injuries will legally be considered the result of their inattention or mistake.

In most cases, when a pedestrian is hit by a vehicle, the driver is considered to be at fault. It is seen as their responsibility to avoid hitting pedestrians, and failing to do so is most often deemed negligent. If you were crossing with the walk light at a crosswalk, for example, the driver will almost certainly be found negligent. However, if you were distracted – say reading your phone – and you crossed the street illegally in busy traffic, the case may not be so cut and dried.

Other Types of Claims

 The driver isn’t the only one who may hold responsibility. In some cases, the argument can be made that the city is at fault due to the way the streets, traffic lights and signs are laid out and functioning. Examples might include broken or malfunctioning traffic lights, or crosswalks placed in locations that are difficult for drivers to see. It is considered the responsibility of the government to maintain roadways, so in these situations, a claim may be filed against the local municipality.

If you’ve been injured by a vehicle and you’d like advice on filing a personal injury claim, contact us anytime at 877-526-3457, and one of our representatives will be happy to speak with you. Or if you’d prefer to contact us online, please fill out this form and we will respond right away.

What Are Compassionate Allowances?

What Are Compassionate Allowances?

If you’ve filed a Social Security disability claim or you’re considering filing one, you may have heard the term “Compassionate Allowances.”

What exactly are they, and how can they help you?

 

Most importantly, Compassionate Allowances can fast-track the process of reaching a decision about whether an individual will receive Social Security disability benefits. These allowances are offered to those with particularly serious medical conditions, including adult brain disorders, certain cancers, and some rare conditions affecting children. You can find the full list of qualifying conditions here, and submit a condition for consideration here. If submitting a condition, you will need to provide information about the condition itself, as well as your own medical records.

 

When determining whether a condition merits Compassionate Allowances, the Social Security Administration relies on information from medical and scientific experts, the National Institutes of Health, the Social Security Disability Determination communities and, in some instances, even members of the public.

 

Feel Free to Contact Us

 

If you have additional questions about Compassionate Allowances or you’d like to learn more about filing a Social Security disability claim, feel free to contact us anytime at 877.526.3457, and one of our representatives will be happy to answer your questions. Or if you’d prefer to contact us online, please fill out this form and we will respond to you shortly.

What is the General Process of Filing a Personal Injury Claim

What is the General Process of Filing a Personal Injury Claim?

What exactly happens when you file a personal injury claim? What will you need to demonstrate in order to win, and how does the legal process unfold?

Negligence or Liability

 In personal injury cases, you will need to demonstrate that the other party is responsible for the hardship you’ve experienced. In the case of negligence, that means their inaction resulted in harm done to you. In the case of liability, it means you were harmed by actions they took. If you feel you can demonstrate either of these, you may decide to move forward with filing a claim.

Filing a Lawsuit

 When you file a personal injury lawsuit, you become the plaintiff and the other person becomes the defendant. Attorneys for both sides begin gathering information in the form of documents, written questions and depositions, which are questions asked to a party who answers under oath. This stage of the process is called discovery.

Most personal injuries are settled after the discovery stage, meaning the defendant agrees to pay money to the plaintiff in exchange for the case being dropped. Only a small percentage of cases proceed on to trial.

Damages

 If a case does go on to trial and the plaintiff wins, they will be awarded damages, or compensation from the defendant. This can include, for example, the cost of medical expenses, lost wages, future wage loss, physical pain or harm, or emotional suffering. Because personal injury cases are not criminal cases, the defendant will not be “punished,” only ordered to pay damages.

If you’d like advice on filing a personal injury claim, contact us anytime at 877-526-3457, and one of our representatives will be happy to speak with you. Or if you’d prefer to contact us online, please fill out this form and we will respond right away.

Can Children Receive Social Security Benefits?

Can Children Receive Social Security Benefits?

Are you disabled or retired?

To receive your Social Security benefits, your child is eligible.

 

In some cases, the answer may be yes.

When a parent becomes disabled, passes away or retires, his or her children may qualify to receive Social Security auxiliary benefits. In order to be eligible, the child must meet these qualifications:

 

  • Be 18 years old or younger, OR be a full-time high school student, OR be over 18 years of age with a disability that began before age 22
  • Be unmarried
  • Be the biological child, adopted child or stepchild of the recipient

 

Children who qualify for Social Security benefits may be eligible to receive up to half of their parent’s retirement or disability benefits. In cases where the parent has passed away, the child may receive up to 75% of the parent’s basic Social Security benefits.

 

It is important to note that a child’s disability may in some cases qualify them to receive benefits of their own. For parents of disabled children, the Social Security Administration offers a Starter Kit to help them navigate the process of applying for SSI disability benefits. To determine whether a disabled child may receive benefits, the Social Security Administration may require an interview with the child, as well as school and medical records.

 

Understanding what your children are entitled to is important, as it can be vital in helping to keep your family financially afloat during difficult times.

 

Feel Free to Contact Us

 

If you have additional questions about Social Security benefits for children, or if you’d like to learn more about filing a Social Security disability (SSD) claim for yourself, feel free to contact us anytime at 877.526.3457. One of our representatives will be happy to answer your questions. Or if you’d prefer to contact us online, please fill out this form and we will respond to you shortly.

What is the Basis of a Personal Injury Claim

What is the Basis of a Personal Injury Claim?

When you’re filing a personal injury claim, what exactly is it you’re trying to argue? Of course, you’re suggesting that the hardship you’ve suffered is the fault of someone else’s actions – or failure to act. But what does that mean in legal terms?

Negligence

One way someone can be shown to be responsible for hardships suffered by another person is they are found to be legally negligent. Negligence means that their failure to take appropriate action resulted in harm to the other person.

There is a legal term called duty of care that describes the responsibility individuals have to avoid causing harm to other people. If it can be demonstrated that someone indeed had duty of care in a particular situation – that is, it could reasonably be expected they’d take steps not to harm others – and they breached that obligation, they will be found negligent. For example, if a driver isn’t paying attention and hits a pedestrian in a crosswalk, the driver has breached their duty of care.

Strict Liability

It’s not always necessary to demonstrate negligence in a personal injury case. In the case of strict liability, the party making the claim needs to show that a product was designed or manufactured in a way that makes it unreasonably dangerous, even when used as the manufacturer intends. If a medication has a high risk of severe side effects, for example, the pharmaceutical company could potentially be found liable for the suffering experienced by patients who have used the drug.

Intentional Wrongs

Finally, a person can be found liable for the suffering of another if it can be shown they’ve intentionally wronged the victim. While these cases occur less frequently, they include assault and battery, slander and libel. However, the offender’s primary goal may not always be to cause harm. What is necessary is they actively decided to do something that resulted in harm to another. Whereas negligence means someone’s inaction led to suffering, intentional wrongs refer to situations in which decisive action led to harm, whether intentionally or unintentionally. False imprisonment is one such example.

If you’d like advice on filing a personal injury claim, contact us anytime at 877-526-3457, and one of our representatives will be happy to speak with you. Or if you’d prefer to contact us online, please fill out this form and we will respond right away.

Spaghetti Dinner

Spaghetti Dinner

It’s Almost Time for Our Annual Spaghetti Dinner to Benefit Veterans

When it comes to feasting in November, you probably think of turkey, stuffing and pumpkin pie. But at Jan Dils, we think Veterans Day and our tradition of “spaghetti” first.

 

Jan Dils, Attorneys at Law, is well known for getting Veterans the disability benefits they have earned and deserve. However, the firm’s advocacy doesn’t stop there. Our team of compassionate attorneys has a history of giving back to our personal heroes. Starting out as a Veterans Day cookout in 2012, the event moved to the Parkersburg Knights of Columbus in 2015 and evolved into a festive spaghetti dinner – making the event more accessible for our community of Veterans.

 

This year’s dinner will be held on November 7 from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m. The dinner is free for Veterans. The cost for non-Veterans is $5.00. Children eight and under eat free with a paying adult. Dine in and carry out options are both available.

 

All funds raised will be donated to Operation Transportation, a program run through MOV Transit that provides free bus passes to Veterans. The program makes a real difference in the lives of local veterans every day, many of whom rely on it to attend medical appointments and commute to work.

 

“For the people who use it, it’s invaluable – for some people it’s the only way they can get around,” said Brian Schroeder, the TAMS and procurement officer at MOV Transit who oversees the program.

 

According to Schroeder, this specific program puts hundreds of bus passes in the hands of Veterans annually – with more than 6,000 free passes being distributed to date.

 

The dinner will also feature a raffle for several door prizes. Food and beverage will be provided by the Jan Dils, Attorneys at Law, team. We look forward to sharing a great meal with great company. Follow us on social media for photos from the event.

Spaghetti Dinner

Contact Us

If you’re a Veteran interested in learning more about filing a Veterans Disability claim, feel free to call us at 877.526.3457, and one of our representatives will be happy to speak with you. Or if you’d prefer to connect with us online, please fill out this form and we will be in touch right away.

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