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shutterstock_418304131.jpgNo one ever plans on getting into an auto accident. Unfortunately, this often means you are not prepared to respond effectively when you are in an accident. You may deal with issues of your health and your financial well-being as you go, without considering your needs or your rights. If you do find yourself in a car accident, use these tips to help identify and locate the help you need.

1. Take Care of Yourself

Before you worry about anyone else, see a doctor. The most common injuries in a car accident tend to occur in the head, neck, and back. This can become dangerous quickly, even if you do not notice the injuries in the moment. You need to tend to your health first.

2. Take Notes

In the aftermath of an auto accident, you may find the details fuzzy. Only rarely does the picture get clearer over time. Usually, as time passes, memories fade regarding the specifics of what happened. Take notes on when, where, and how the accident occurred, so you can recall those details later when you talk to your insurer and your attorney.

3. Be Patient

Sometimes you just want to get past dealing with an accident, and insurance companies are all too happy to give you a low settlement to let you move forward. Take the time to understand what rights you may have before you settle for less than you deserve.

4. Be Thorough

The more details you can note and recall, the stronger your position becomes. Think about what you see and experience before, during, and after the accident. Get a complete examination to identify potential injuries. The big picture is composed of hundreds of details, and each one matters.

5. Talk to an Attorney

If you are hurt in a car accident, the sooner you talk to a good personal injury attorney, the more quickly and effectively you can move to learn and pursue the recovery you deserve. Contact Stern and Stern today to find out how we can help.


shutterstock_144026332.jpgAuto accidents create headaches well beyond the inconvenience of the moment. You have to deal with one or more insurance companies, take time out of your schedule to take your car to a repair shop, and often, seek medical attention. When you endure a personal injury in an auto accident, you lose time and money while you try to recover. If the accident was the other driver's fault, you are entitled to recover damages for a serious injury. The right personal injury lawyer can help you do so.

Memorialize Your Facts

After an auto accident, you have to deal almost immediately with paperwork: a police report, insurance reports, documentation for your employer, and hospital records. Sometimes you lose track of other details in the midst of everything. Recovery for your auto accident claims depends on establishing the other driver's fault. This, in turn, requires that you recall and lay out the specifics of your accident so a jury can understand why you should recover for your personal injury. A good lawyer will help you identify the documents and information you need, and help you investigate to fill in any gaps.

Legal Rights and Claims

Before you accept any settlement offer that the other driver's insurance company offers, you need to learn your rights. New Jersey law requires everyone to carry auto insurance, but the structure of your policy determines the extent to which you can pursue the other driver for damages. You may also be entitled to recover more, from the driver or a bar or tavern if alcohol was involved.

Your attorney's job is to help you connect your specific facts to the overall legal system at issue. Taking time to sit with an experienced lawyer allows you to handle your physical recovery while an expert handles your case.

The legal structure of New Jersey auto accident laws and cases can be frustrating and confusing. Contact Stern and Stern today, and we will help you find the recovery you deserve.


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When you are involved in an auto accident, injuries sometimes occur. Unfortunately, more complications arise when a motorcycle or another two-wheeler is involved. Statistically, New Jersey accident claims records show that motorcyclists are 26 times more likely to die, and five times more likely to be injured, than car or truck drivers. You are simply more vulnerable to serious injury without the structure of a car surrounding you. When you are injured in one of these accidents, you need a lawyer who can help you get the recovery you deserve.

Insurance Coverage Differences

Because of the potential for serious injury, most motorcycle insurance policies do not include personal injury protection (PIP) coverage. PIP covers medical costs for your own injury in an accident. Your policy thus may not cover your injuries, even in a no-fault policy. Accordingly, it is more imperative for motorcyclists than for anyone else to contact a personal injury attorney to help with their accident claims. He or she can help you review your insurance policy, as well as the details of the accident, to determine your right to recover damages for your injuries.

Injuries in Motorcycle Accident Claims

Unfortunately, these injuries can be particularly intense when you are hurt in a motorcycle accident. The opposing lawyer or insurance company may try to use these reasons to blame you  - a motorcycle offers very little physical protection to you in a crash, and can be more difficult for another driver to see on the road. But if another driver's negligence causes your accident, your lawyer will help you work past these kinds of legal tricks. You are entitled to recover damages when someone else causes a serious accident; you do not lose legal rights and protections just because you are legally driving a two-wheeled vehicle.

If you have been injured in an accident while driving a motorcycle or a two-wheeler, don't entrust your fate to someone without the right experience or passion for you. Contact Stern and Stern, and we will fight to get you the recovery you deserve.


shutterstock_320663342.jpgPersonal injury law can be confusing and frightening after you are hurt. This is why lawyers are here: to help you through the process of protecting your rights and getting the recovery you deserve. Before you can start, though, you need to know when to reach out for help. The answer depends on what happened to you and where, but when in doubt, it never hurts to reach out to an excellent personal injury lawyer.

Accidents

If you have been in an accident, whether a car crash, a slipand fall,or something else, you should first make sure you take care of yourself. Get to the hospital or your doctor first. Once you have been treated, make sure you document and save everything: what happened, what your diagnosis included, and what your treatment includes. After this, you should reach out to a personal injury lawyer and talk about your options. That person will help you understand how the process works, what you are entitled to, and how you can achieve a proper recovery for your injuries.

Workplace Injuries

If you are injured at work, you may still have rights under New Jersey's personal injury law statutes, but you must begin with the Workers Compensation system. This means immediately reporting your injury to your employer through the system you have in place at work. From there, your employer files a claim, and most injuries are covered through the system.

That said, you may find that the system is confusing, or that your employer is not trying to fully cover your needs. If you feel you are not being treated fairly, or if your Workers Comp recovery does not cover the cost of all you have lost, you can still look to personal injury law for recovery.

When in Doubt, Call!

Too many people feel left in the dark after an injury. You don't have to sit and wonder how you will get what you need. If you have suffered a serious injury, contact Stern & Stern. Our expert attorneys will help you fight for the recovery you deserve.


shutterstock_20978254.jpgAuto accidents happen all too frequently, but relatively few of those accidents result in a legal trial. When they do not result in serious injury, auto insurance usually covers the cost of repairs. And when the auto accident does cause serious injuries, one or both sides often want to settle rather than endure a long trial or risk an unfavorable verdict. When you are hurt in an accident, the right personal injury lawyer can help walk you through the settlement process.

Fault and Damages

Before the settlement process can begin, you must be able to show the other driver caused the accident. Write down all of the information you can, including what happened, where and when the accident occurred. Your attorney will help you get a copy of the police report as well. Even though New Jersey is a choice no fault state, the law still creates liability for a driver who causes serious injury.

Of course, you must show that your injuries fall into the "serious" category. You need to have your injuries assessed by medical professionals. If they are serious, your damages from the auto accident may include lost income or ability to earn that you lose. You need to identify all of the financial losses you incur to include in the settlement you seek.

Insurance and Negotiations

The other driver's insurance company usually hires or pays for the lawyer representing that driver. The limits of the insurance policy thus provide the top end of the settlement authority, unless you can demonstrate bad faith by the insurer in its negotiations. You only have two years from the date of an accident to file suit, so if the negotiation drags out, your lawyer may file suit on your behalf to maintain leverage and get you the best settlement possible.

If you have been seriously injured in an auto accident, don't try to go it alone or rely on your insurance company. Contact Stern and Stern so we can help you get the settlement you deserve.


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When you lose a loved one due to the wrongful or negligent act of another, the loss can be overwhelming. The loss can reverberate through the whole family, and takes an emotional toll that you cannot describe or quantify. Beyond this, though, the loss often hits hard financially. Fortunately, New Jersey law provides for your recovery of these financial losses in the state's wrongful death statute.

Who May Recover

In New Jersey, both the Survival Act and Wrongful Death Act provide for recovery of damages. The former provides recovery personal to the person who has died, primarily their pain and suffering, while the latter provides an award to those who were dependent upon the deceased for the value of thedecedentscontribution to theirwellbeing. But these actions are usually joined and heard together, so you should think of them together when it comes to your legal rights. 

One other key difference is that, in a Survival Act case, you do not have to show actual dependency on the deceased. In a wrongful death case, on the other hand, only dependents may recover losses for the loss of the victim. However, any recovery under the act is not considered part of the decedent's will. Your attorney can help you gather what you need to establish the relationship falls within what the act requires.

Direct Losses

Direct financial losses for which you are entitled to recover include loss of support income and the value of services that person provided. That can include housekeeping, parenting, babysitting, and anything else of value that person provided. Your lawyer can help you understand what this involves and how to go about identifying what you need to show to placevaluation on your lawsuit.

Other Losses to Consider

The law does not provide for punitive damages or losses due to emotional distress unless you witnessed the act or accident yourself. On the other hand, your losses do include the value of those services the person provided you, including the value of companionship.

If you have lost a loved one due to someone else's wrongful act, we can help. Contact Stern and Stern to get the help you need.


shutterstock_406889893.jpgThe aftermath of any personal injury you sustain can be frustrating. Recovery takes time and money, and in the case of a serious injury, you may never again be able to do everything you once did. In the midst of what you are experiencing, though, you also need to talk to a personal injury lawyer. This will help you understand your options and reach the best result possible.

1. Understand Your Rights

Your legal rights come from a complicated blend of legislation, case law, and the specific facts behind your injury. This creates a morass that requires legal training and experience to navigate. When you consult an attorney who specializes in this area of law, you gain a perspective that helps you cut through the complications and your personal frustrations to better understand what recovery you can achieve.

2. Cover Your Bases

Even when you have a basic understanding of what rights you have after an injury, you need to prepare your case. Collecting the evidence you need creates a daunting challenge. Your personal injury lawyer will lay out a case for you in ways that make sense. He or she will further ensure you do not miss any important steps in the process. After an injury, it is difficult to keep up with all the information you need. The right lawyer will help ensure you have all your bases covered.

3. You Shouldn't Always Settle

It may be a matter of days before an insurance company or lawyer contacts you with a settlement offer. These offers tempt you with the prospect of a quick resolution and immediate funds. Before you snap up the offer, though, you should review your options. Your lawyer will talk through the impact of your injury and what recovery and timelines are realistic for you. Settling may be the right choice, but you should be certain before you forfeit your right to negotiate or pursue damages.

After a serious injury, consulting and hiring the right personal injury attorney makes a big difference in your recovery options. Contact Stern and Stern today to get started.


shutterstock_58086832.jpgAfter an auto accident occurs, your mind races. You may be worried about your vehicle, your family, or just getting to a hospital. But when you suffer a serious injury, you should also plan to call an excellent personal injury lawyer. The insurance companies will have legal representation and be out to protect their own interests; you need to protect yours as well. 

Treat Your Injuries

The first step you need to take is to take care of yourself. Go to a hospital or your doctor as soon as you are able. This is critical to your health and safety, and also an important step to protect your legal rights. New Jersey limits damages claims unless you can demonstrate a serious injury, so your ability to offer documentation showing the extent of your injuries is critical to your claims recovery.

Other Circumstances

At times, other factors play in to your right to recover. Was the other driver drunk, or otherwise driving recklessly? If so, you may be able to recover not only from the drive, but also from the person or establishment that served that person alcohol. On the other hand, any errors attributed to your driving can be used to limit the other driver's liability for your auto accident injuries.

Finally, the ability to recover involves the timing of your claim. Part of this is simply letting your lawyer start investigating while memories and facts are still fresh in your mind. In addition, New Jersey's statute of limitations for a lawsuit related to an auto accident requires you to file within two years, or else you cannot recover. Your lawyer will want time to investigate, prepare, and often negotiate on your behalf before filing a lawsuit, so the sooner you can begin the process, the better your chance of recovery.

You undoubtedly will receive mail from dozens of out-of-state lawyers who monitor police reports and hospital records to find clients. Don't rely on people who may not know the jurisdiction. Contact Stern and Stern to get the recovery you deserve.


shutterstock_294400490.jpgMost lawsuits do not go to trial. When one ends up at court, it is normal to be nervous. Enough time has elapsed between the trial and your auto accident that you just want everything to be finished. It is very important to get yourself ready for court. Your personal injury attorney will help you prepare, but knowing some of what to expect will help.

Take Notes and Practice

Your court date is your chance to tell your story to the judge and jury members whose job it is to understand what happened. Your memories will not be as strong as they were right after the auto accident. Your lawyer will recommend you practice giving your testimony out loud. You and your lawyer have been living with the case for a long time, but to the jury, it is all new information. Be ready to tell your story openly and honestly regarding the accident, your injuries and how it has affected your life. This is your one chance to tell what happened, so be ready.

The Day(s) of Trial

When you arrive at court, you should dress respectfully. You will sit with your lawyer and the defendant or defendants will sit at a different table. The jury will come in and sit off to the side. You should only address the judge when asked, and always with the title "Your Honor." 

During direct examination, you describe your side of the story. Your attorney will ask questions to help you, but these are the moments where you tell your story. The opposing attorney will then cross examine you. He or she may act overly nice or may try to attack you. In either case, you need to stay calm and answer questions directly. This will show the jury you have nothing to hide and help the truth emerge.

Ultimately, a trial demonstrates what happened so you can get a fair verdict. If your auto accident goes to trial, we are ready to fight and help you get the recovery you deserve. Contact Stern and Stern today to learn more.


shutterstock_153986042.jpgFor some people, personal injury law falls within one or two kinds of accidents or injuries. The truth is, it applies to an extensive list of everyday occurrences. A personal injury law firm can help you protect your right to recover from all kinds of injuries, from the commonplace to the bizarre. 

1. Auto Accidents

Every year in New Jersey hundreds of thousands of auto accidents and hundreds of crash fatalities happen. Many of these accidents result in serious injuries. If you have been injured or alove one injured or killed by another driver, you should contact a good personal injury lawyer.

2. Slip and Fall

Businesses and homeowners have a duty to keep their property safe for others. Too often, dangerous property conditions cause injuries when people slip or trip and fall. These injuries often require medical attention for which you deserve compensation.

3. Medical Malpractice

Doctors work hard every day to take care of patients and save lives. However, mistakes leave patients worse off than they were before they sought treatment. A personal injury law firm helps hold doctors and hospitals accountable for the negligent and reckless errors they make.

4. Animal Attacks

People love their pets and most pet owners take care of them responsibly. Unfortunately, some pets present dangers to guests and passersby. If a person does not control his or her pet and the animal attacks you, you are entitled to damages to compensate you for the injuries and other costs resulting from the attack.

5. Product Liability

When a product does not work correctly, it sometimes causes injuries to the person trying to use it. The product may carry disclaimers and instructions, but these do not always do enough to protect someone. If a dangerous product injures you, you can contact a law firm to help you recover damages.

These and many other situations create serious injuries every day. If you have been injured by someone else's negligence or recklessness, contact Stern and Stern so we can help you get the compensation you deserve.


shutterstock_216371449.jpgIn New Jersey and throughout the United States, drunk drivers present serious dangers to you and everyone else on the road. In fact, according to the Center for Disease Control, one in every three traffic deaths is caused by a drunk driver. These drivers injure thousands more every year. While no amount of money can truly make you whole if a reckless driver kills or seriously injures you or a loved one, a good personal injury lawyer can help you get the recovery you deserve after an accident.

Your Rights

New Jersey provides criminal prosecution against drunk drivers. In addition to this, personal injury law provides a right to sue these drivers to recover civil damages. In fact, a drunk driving conviction in criminal proceedings serves as direct evidence that the person recklessly caused your accident. Further, under New Jersey's dram shop law, you may also recover from an individual, a bar, or a restaurant that served the drunk driver alcohol if it served alcohol when the person was already visibly drunk. Both the driver and the drink provider are liable because all played a role in causing your injuries.

What to Do After the Accident

First, of course, you need to take care of yourself. Go to the hospital to have your injuries treated. As soon as possible, you should write down all of the information you can gather from the accident before you start to forget anything: the name and insurance company of the other driver if you can get it, along with the time and place of the accident, and what happened. Take the information to an experienced attorney who understands how to fight for your rights. All of this can help your lawyer with fact investigation of what happened, where the person got his or her drinks, and from whom you can recover damages. 

If you have been seriously injured by a drunk driver, don't let the insurance companies talk you out of pursuing the personal injury law recovery you deserve. Contact Stern and Stern, and we will help you get the recovery you need.


shutterstock_100154162.jpgWhen you suffer an injury at work, the state Workers Compensation system is designed to help cover your costs while you recover. This includes a percentage of your usual pay and medical costs you incur to help you recover. Unfortunately, the system confuses many, and your employer sometimes puts up roadblocks for you when you try to file your insurance claims. In these times, you need a strong lawyer to help you achieve the recovery you are entitled to receive.

What Workers Compensation Covers

Workers Compensation covers you for any injury you suffer in the course of your work. Usually this comes from accidents that happen on site, but it can also occur if you are performing work duties off site, like delivering merchandise for your employer. You are also entitled to compensation for a repetitive use injury like carpal tunnel. As long as the injury comes as a result of your performance of work duties, the system should pay for your recovery.

Workers Compensation does not cover you for intentional acts by your employer. If you have an unsafe condition at work, the employer knows about it, and it causes you to get injured, you are entitled to file a suit outside of the Workers Compensation system.

How the Process Works

The first thing you need to do is report your injury to your employer. You will fill out paperwork, and the insurance claims are then processed through the employer's Workers Compensation provider. If the claim is accepted, you will receive payments for time off of work, and your medical bills will be paid by the provider.

If, on the other hand, your claim is denied, you can request a hearing. In this situation, you should consult an attorney to help you through the process. Similarly, if your employer's negligence or recklessness caused your injury, you should consult an attorney to explore a lawsuit.  You are probably also entitled to an award for any aspect of your injury that is permanent.  In order to pursue that claim you should consult an attorney.

Your Rights

All too often, employers look to protect themselves rather than their employees' best interest in Workers Compensation matters. If you have been hurt at work, contact Stern & Stern to help protect you.