A. Depends, sometimes the skills of a professional attorney can be beneficial to your case. A lawyer is specially trained to file lawsuits and handle cases and may be able to acheive a better result than someone who does not have law experience. If you were injured using a bad product, someone else’s negligence, or were exposed to something toxic, a personal injury attorney is something you should look into.
A. We only get paid when the case is concluded. We take percentage of the total amount the settlement you were given. The figure varies depending if the client is a minor or if the case settles in mediation or trial. Fees typically are 1/3.
A. If you were driving a car that you are not the owner of and you were injured in an accident you can only receive damages for your injuries. You will not receive any compensation for property damage as it is not your property. You as the driver, however, may be liable for any injuries sustained.
A. This depends. It is based on the severity of your injuries and how long it takes for you to be released from medical treatment. Also, there is a two year statute of limitations with personal injury cases meaning that you can not file a lawsuit if it has been two years since you were injured.
A. We can assist you in finding doctors that will “work on lien”. This means that you do not have to pay the fees to the doctor until you settle your case.
A. Under “Prop 213” if you do not have valid insurance the driver can not recieve damages for “pain and suffering”. You can, however, receive economic damages such as medical bills, wage loss, and property damages.
A. It is possible to recover four types of damages from a products liability cases:

Compensatory damages- these are to compensate you for the cost of medical bills, the money you lost from the time you had to take off of work, the cost it will take you to care for your disability if your injury has altered your lifestyle, and the cost of any property damage caused by the product.
Pain and suffering- these are damages for the pain or loss of enjoyment of life caused by your injury. Pain and suffering can include anxiety, scars, fear, duress, as well as pain.
Loss of consortium- these are to compensate you in the event your injuries have had a negative affect on your relationship with your spouse. Your may be able to recover these damages as well.
Punitive damages- these are awarded in such cases when the defendant’s conduct was so outrageous that the courts or jury will issue these damages as an extra punishment.

A. Yes, it is possible to sue a foreign corporation for a faulty product that has been sold to the United States. These days mor and more corporations are manufacturing their products outside of the Untied States, but brought back for sale. If a product is sold in the United States, the corporation is subject to the laws of the United States. The corporation must have some direct contact with the United States to fall under U.S. laws.

A. There is a “statute of limitations”, or a limit to the amont of time to file a suit, in every state that determines how long you have to file you case. In a product liability case no state has a statute of limitations that is less than one year. Specifically, in California the statute of limitations is 2 years from the date of injury.
A. You will need to provide your attorney with:

-The product itself (if possible)

-Information about where you purchased it

-Any manuals or other material that came with the product

-Pictures of the product and where the injury occured (if possible)

-Other similar products or exemplars used needed to use the product you were injured with (if possible)

-Copies of all warnings, instructions, and warranties that came with the product or its packaging

-Copies of your medical records

-Time that you missed for work

-Receipts for any property damge (cleaning bills, receipts for damaged clothing)

-Begin a journal and document everything

-Details of what occurred
-What was said by any witnesses
-Your injuries, the pain and feelings you experience due to your injuries
-Time you had to take off work
-Time spent talking with the insurance company as well as your lawyer
-Effects of the injuries on your family

A. The defendants will most likely try to argue that you were being irresponsible or negligent while using their product. They may also try to prove that you were not following the proper instructions and using the product in a way that it was not intended to be used. It’s possible that if you were injured but you were negligent and partially responsible for your injuries you may only receive partial damages from the defendant, called “comparative negligence” or “comparative fault”. In some cases you can be negligent but still receive full damages if your negligence did not cause your injuries. For example, if you are intoxicated and fall into an elevator shaft because the elevator did not arrive at the floor properly by the time the doors had opened.
A. A design defect is a fault in the plan or outline of a product. A design defect will affect all of the products manufactured under that design because that is how it was instructed to be made. Manufactuing defects, such a missing screw or poor quality materials, can occur even though the product’s design or blueprint is fine. Something that occurred in the process of assembling the product rather than an error in the blueprint for the product would be classified as a manufacturing defect.
A. It’s possible. For a manufacturer to be liable there must have not only been an injury from using the product, but also the product must have been defective or unexpectedly dangerous.
A. defective product is a product which fails to perform as safely as an ordinary consumer would expect because of a fault in its design, labeling, or the way it is instructed to be used. An example rests with the Ford Pintos of the 1970’s. These cars had a faulty fuel system that easily ignited the car in a rear end collision. Because of a direct fault in the Pintos’ fuel system approximately 500 people died and many more were injured.
A. The Jones Act is a specific section of the Merchant Marine Act of 1920. It deals with cabotage (coastal shipping) and defines the rights of seamen who are hurt while working at sea. The Jones Act gives seamen legal avenues for seeking compensation if they are injured due to negligent actions (or inactions) performed by the shipowner, the captain, or any other member of the crew. Essentially, it extends seamen the same protection already afforded to railroad workers. Specifically, the act states that:

“Any sailor who shall suffer personal injury in the course of his employment may, at his election, maintain an action for damages at law, with the right to trial by jury, and in such action all statutes of the United States modifying or extending the common-law right or remedy in cases of personal injury to railway employees shall apply.”

A. Regardless of how minor you think the accident is, you should always report it to the police. Write down names, addresses and phone numbers of any witnesses, and make sure the police officer gives you a copy of the driver exchange information form. Call your insurance agent and your insurance company immediately for further instructions. Then call (619) 531-2022 for a free consultation.
A. No! Tell the insurance company you will get back to them. Ask to put any offers in writing. In the meantime, contact the Law Offices of Keith J. Stone immediately. Far to often, insurance companies will offer a minimal amount of money in return for your signature on a release. Once you sign the release, you cannot open the case and sue them. Additionally, we do not like to talk settlement for the first several months after the crash. You want to make sure that you know what all of your injuries are and more importantly what your prognosis is.
A. Every case is different. Compensation for personal injury claims will depend on: the cost of your current medical bills and necessary ongoing treatments, the severity and type of the injury (or whether a victim has died), whether you are able to earn a living after being injured, settlements awarded in cases similar to yours, whether your condition is curable, whether your injury was caused by intentional harm or malice (rather than simply negligence). Those with severe, incurable injuries that prevent them from working or those caused by intentional malice will likely recover higher compensation amounts. The Law Offices of Keith J. Stone makes a focus on how the crash has affected your lifestyle.
A. There are a number of economic and non-economic damages that may be awarded in a personal injury lawsuit, including: emotional pain and suffering, lost wages, lost earning capacity (i.e. an inability to work in the future due to injuries), medical bills, necessary ongoing treatments. All damages include present and future expected losses. You may also be eligible to recover punitive damages if you can prove the defendant’s conduct was intentional or malicious.
A. To drive in California, one must have insurance. One of the most important aspects of your car insurance is known as uninsured motorist coverage. The Law Offices of Keith J. Stone will be happy to review your insurance policies to make sure you have the maximum Uninsured Motorists and Under-insured Motorist coverage you can have. This coverage will come into effect if you are hit by an uninsured driver or hit and run driver.
A. Workers in virtually any profession on a ship can qualify as seamen, including:
• Captains
• Sailors
• Cooks
• Waiters and waitresses
• Deck hands
However, workers must meet certain conditions for the law to consider them seamen under the Jones Act. Typically, a worker must spend time working at sea to be eligible to file a lawsuit under the Jones Act. Furthermore, the ship on which the seaman works must be a vessel.

Courts generally consider any object involved in the transport of cargo or passengers on navigable waters a vessel. For example, a cruise liner would be a vessel, but a casino boat that is permanently at shore may not be, since the crew members do not regularly face dangers associated with work at sea.

The vessel must also be owned and flagged under the laws of the United States, but determining if the Jones Act applies depends largely upon facts of particular case and activity in which the injured party was engaged at time of injury. For more information contact Keith J. Stone.

A. Generally speaking, Jones Act injury claims are regulated by a three year statute of limitations from the date the accident occurred. While this may seem to give you plenty of time to make the decision whether or not to sue, keep in mind that a lot of unexpected problems can come up that will drag the process out much longer than you anticipated. Witnesses can change their minds or pass away. Companies can change ownership or go out of business entirely.

Concerned you wont be able to file a suit? See who is eligible to file a claim under the Jones Act .

A. The length of an average dog bite case is directly related to the nature and extent of the injuries, as well as how long the injuries take to heal. In the case of a severe injury, scarring may result. This may sometimes necessitate a six to nine month waiting period in order to send our clients to a plastic surgeon so the extent of permanent scarring as well as cost of scar revision can be discovered. There is theoretically no fixed time limit that a dog bite case will take to reach it’s successful conclusion. However, you can be assured both that you will be made aware of a time frame, and that The San Diego-based Office of attorney Keith J. Stone will take care of you as a client.

If you have been bitten, please consult our Dog Bite page.

A. California recognizes wrongful death cases. In this regard, if a loved one is killed due to the wrongful conduct of others, typically, a spouse, a child, a parent or a sibling can sue. The focus is on the loss of love, comfort, companionship, and the economic support one may have received from the decedent.
A. Yes, assuming it is possible to do so, please be advised to take photographs of your injuries. The first thing as your lawyer that I’ll do (if you haven’t already) is to take photographs of our victims’ injuries because proper documentation is very important in proving the full extent of your injuries, wounds and harm suffered.

If it is possible without danger to yourself, take pictures of the attacking dog. Do not forget your cell phone now has great photo capabilities.

However, it is important that you never place yourself in danger of being attacked again. Perhaps you can photograph or have a family member or friend document the exchange with the police and animal control.

Access my Dog Bite Practice Area Here.

A. More often than not children are the most vulnerable and prone toward being bitten, with the majority of those bites occurring on the face. In addition, strays are not to blame. This assumption with regard to dog bites is unwarranted.

In fact, the vast majority of bites are caused by pet dogs and happen when people are engaged in social behavior in appropriate places. They typically occur close to the dog’s home (61% of bites) and injuries are largely friendly dogs known to the bitten person (77% of bites). Per year, almost $165 million is spent in the treatment of dog bites.

General Information about my Dog Bite Practice Area Here &California Dog Bite Laws Here.

A. Most states do have laws and/or regulations governing dogs and whether or not these animals must be leashed or properly secured. California has statutes right on point. Specifically, a dog owner is “strictly liable” for the dog bites his/her dog causes.
A. Most communities have leash laws that require dog owners to have their dog on a leash unless the dog is confined to the house or a fenced yard. If a dog bites someone and his owner has failed to follow the leash law, the penalties may be increased.
A. Many states have moved away from “one free bite rule” and now hold the owners responsible for the injuries that their animal causes without showing any previous aggressive tendencies. In this regard, the owner is “strictly liable” for the actions and conduct of his/her animal.
A. Yes. The dog attack or dog bite should be reported to your local animal control center and/or police department. Make sure to note the date of the report and the name of the person you spoke with. You should seek medical attention typically if there is a puncture, laceration, open wound and bleeding due to possible risk of infection. If in doubt contact the Law Offices of Keith J. Stone immediately for assistance.
A. Remember that every case is unique. It is not possible to provide an average settlement because the amount of the settlement depends on various factors such as medical bills, loss of wages, pain and suffering, plastic surgery costs, future remedial care and possibly psychological counseling (if necessary). For all your dog bites questions, call the Law Offices of Keith J. Stone we can answer your questions.
A. Try to document the exact location where you fell. If at all possible, contact management and insist that they do an incident report. Don not forget about cell phones. Try to document the scene by taking pictures of what was on the floor or what caused you to fall. The focus on this kind of cases is did the owner of the property know that there was a problem or should have known of the problem. If in doubt contact the Law Offices of Keith J. Stone to assist you.
A. Most store managers will try to calm down injured customers and will do so by promising to pay medical bills. However, once a medical bill is submitted for payment, the actual decision of whether or not to pay is usually made by someone else. Most stores have insurance that covers accidents on their premises and, in those instances, it is the insurance company that decides whether or not to pay for medical treatment. The best approach for you is not to rely solely on the trust of a store manager, but contact Keith J. Stone for legal advise.
A. Only you can decide as to whether or not you think your need medical assistance. When in doubt, go see a doctor! Do not be afraid to utilize your own health insurance if necessary. Most communities have an urgent care or a local hospital for emergencies. Your health is important.
A. The focus on these kinds of cases is whether the landowner or the person in charge of the lot knew or should have known that there was a dangerous condition. Typically, were holes patched or repaired. If water was the cause of your fall, are there areas of algae or large puddles of standing water, which would allow someone to fall such as yourself. Again, document the area as best as possible by taking photographs. The key, however, is whether the landowner knew or should have known of these problems.
A. Under common law principles, a property owner’s duty to an entrant depends on the entrant’s legal status as an invitee, licensee or trespasser. A social guest, such as a person invited to a party, is considered a licensee. In this example, the neighbor had a duty to warn you of a dangerous condition that creates an unreasonable risk of harm if it is known to the neighbor and not likely to be discovered by you, the guest. Thus, if you were injured on a hidden condition, such as a loose floorboard that the neighbor knew about, but did not warn you about, you may be able to recover for your injuries.
A. Depends, sometimes the skills of a professional attorney can be beneficial to your case. A lawyer is specially trained to file lawsuits and handle cases and may be able to acheive a better result than someone who does not have law experience. If you were injured using a bad product, someone else’s negligence, or were exposed to something toxic, a personal injury attorney is something you should look into.