We make the impossible possible.

Litigation Funding Blog

Avoid Medical Malpractice Lawsuits: Tell Patients the Truth

March 30, 2010

There is a small, but disturbing, increase in incidents where doctors do not inform their patients about abnormal test results. According to a study from the Archives of Internal Medicine, roughly 7% of patients were not told about significant clinical findings. This lack of information could result in an accusation of non-diagnosis or misdiagnosis, which, of course, would result in a corresponding increase in the number of possible medical malpractice claims.

The study examined over 5,434 patients and their records relating to abnormal blood tests, imaging tests and x-rays. The point of the study was to find out if the patient’s were advised, within a reasonable time, that your result were “abnormal”. Out of 1,889 cases, 135 patients weren’t told about their abnormal test results.

So, why didn’t the doctors tell their patients about their lab results and other significant findings? Apparently, some doctors believed that they had told them, even if their showed no such indication. Some doctors felt that the results weren’t serious enough to warrant mention, and others were planning to inform patients but hadn’t gotten around to it yet. In our experience, this kind of stuff scares people, and rightfully so. It’s their health, their life and their test results. They depend on the doctor to take care of them, not ignore test results. This practice gives the patient a false sense of perfect heath.

How can patient notification errors be avoided? Test results should be sent directly to the doctor who is principally responsible for that patient. Upon furnishing him/her with the results, require that the doctor acknowledge receipt, in writing; require that an office staff person inform the patient that the results are in and have been provided to the principal doctor and keep a record of the call. Tell the patient to call the doctor for the results if they do not here from his/her office within a prescribed period of time.

These are simple steps that would help avoid drastic consequences for the patient and the doctor. They are simple steps, but the doctors’ cooperation must be a major component to the process. LitigationFundingCorp.com strongly urges doctors who wish to avoid medical malpractice lawsuits to practice prompt, full and honest disclosure to their patients.

Employee Falls 10 Feet Through Uncovered Hole At Indiana Construction Site

March 29, 2010

Some cases just defy logic. This is one of them. The incident occurred at a Mackey Arena construction site in Indiana and involves a worker injured after falling from the fourth to the third floor on a construction site.

Evidently, the worker somehow stepped through a hole while pulling metal decking onto the penthouse level of the project he was working on. The encounter with this unguarded, dangerous, hole caused him to fall ten feet to the floor below him. Why the hole was uncovered is the burning question of the day. Whoever left it uncovered was negligent. Who was negligent will determine whether the case is a construction site negligence case or a workers compensation case or both.

The local fire department responded with an aerial truck to get the worker to the ground. He has sustained bad bruising, arm injuries and various bumps and abrasions. It’s not clear if he also had mild traumatic brain injury. An investigation is pending.

The injured worker will, most certainly be able to pursue a workers compensation case as the result of this accident. Depending upon the investigation and a determination of who caused the accident (who left the hole uncovered), he may also have a construction site negligence personal injury case against the person or company that left the hole uncovered.

Cases like this often require a long wait for appropriate compensation. These cases take time to prepare, the court systems are clogged, and the severity and long term consequences of injuries must be determined. Witnesses must be found and interviewed, investigations must be conducted; these types of cases are hard fought and lengthy. While our injured worker is waiting for justice in the courtroom, he needs to be able to support himself and his family without sacrificing his valuable case, for pennies on the dollar, to do so. So, what does he do for cash now, to pay ordinary bills and expenses as well as those extraordinary bills and expenses caused by the accident?

He may wish to consider the possibility of getting a lawsuit cash advance from an experienced and professional legal finance company. Lawsuit funding would certainly come in handy for this man; he could handle all of his financial burdens, then wait for his case to make its way through the lengthy court process. Legal funding can be a real financial lifesaver in circumstances where the plaintiff is strapped for cash because of an accident. In this particular case, the worker should know (and all Indiana workers should take note) that workers compensation lawsuit funding, not available in all states, is available in Indiana.It will also prevent him from caving in to the insurance company because of his need for immediate lawsuit cash. Compassionate and professional litigation funding exists to prevent a plaintiff from settling his/her valuable case too soon, for too little. There are no credit checks and employment is not necessary; all you need is a case that has a decent chance of being successful. Find out if pre-settlement funding is right for you and your case.

Permalink | Filed Under: Blog Posts |

20 Foot Fall From Lift Is Fatal to Construction Worker

March 26, 2010

Construction accidents usually result in serious injuries; this one was fatal for one worker and caused serious injuries for another. The construction accident took place in Louisiana at a job site in the East Baton Rouge school system.

It appears that the two construction workers fell a distance 20 feet to the ground after the lift they were balanced on was struck by a beam. One worker suffered a catastrophic traumatic brain injury and was pronounced dead at the scene. The second man was taken to hospital for treatment of his serious injuries.
Both men worked for a steel fabricator at the time of the accident. The police report isn’t clear as to what precisely took place, but from eyewitness reports, it appears that the crane operator moving the beam from one place to another didn’t pay attention to what he was doing and hit the lift.

The surviving construction worker and the family of the deceased construction worker may want to consider filling both a workers compensation case and, if the crane operator was not a co-employee of the same employer as the victims, a personal injury lawsuit against the crane operator and his employer for negligence in operating the unit. Cases like this take some time before they are resolved; in the meantime, the worker and his family and family of the deceased worker may need money now, to pay their bills and expenses and, in the future, as they wait for the case to wind down the long litigation road.
A lawsuit cash advance may work well for both victims here. The victims could apply for litigation funding; if they are approved, they would receive instant cash just when they need it most. This vital lawsuit financial assistance may be used to pay all the necessary medical expenses, funeral expenses and the ordinary expenses that personal injury and wrongful death victims fall behind on when accidents or tragedy happen. Lawsuit funding tries to bridge the gap between lawsuit and case settlement or resolution; legal finance companies do not need credit checks. Lawsuit finance companies look for solid personal injury cases with a reasonable chance of success.

The Batter Struck a Line Drive Killing One

March 12, 2010

It was a good baseball game with amazing line drives as the highlight. Tragically, that night, the pitcher who served up one of the smoking pitches that produced a line drive, died of head injuries.

It was 2003; Brandon Patch was just 18-years old and a promising pitcher. He sent a really nasty fastball to the batter; the batter turned on it, sending a “too hot to touch” streaking ball right back to the mound. The line drive hit Brandon in the head and knocked him flat; he was dead by nightfall.

It wasn’t until 2009, six long years later, that a jury in Montana awarded Brandon’s family $850,000 for his pain and suffering and lost potential earnings. The jury found that the maker of the Louisville Slugger aluminum bat that cracked the ball into Brandon’s head had not properly warned consumers about the dangers of their product. Brandon’s mother felt the bat should have a warning label. The question becomes just what kind of a warning label would that be?

While not discounting the verdict in any way, or the family’s tremendous loss, it is doubtful bats will have warning labels attached to them anytime soon. Louisville Slugger would argue that some things are so obvious that there is no need to warn anyone about them. The risk is that a jury may see things differently, as the manufacturers of the bat, Hillerich & Bradsby found out the hard way.

This type of case has legal ramifications for small businesses; making safe products should be a high priority because, according to Jury Verdict Research, the largest database of personal injury claim verdicts in the U.S., 50% of those who sue for injuries caused by a defective product received a jury award close to $1.9 million.

The Patch case took six difficult years to settle, leaving his family to try and cope with the burden of all the bills. It wasn’t just legal bills that concerned the family, but the other significant expenditures they faced on an ongoing basis: mortgage, food, tuition, and counseling to deal with their son’s sudden death.

The Patch family may have been eligible for lawsuit funding by making one quick phone call. Litigation funding is non-recourse financing, which means if they had lost their case, they would not need to pay any of the money back. A win would mean they’d pay the lawsuit cash advance and risk-adjusted profit back. Given the six year wait, this funding may have helped them through some really rough times and allowed them to stay the course to an equitable settlement.

Daren Monroe writes for Litigation Funding Corp. To learn more about lawsuit funding and litigation funding, visit Litigationfundingcorp.com.

The Defendant Vanished, but Judgment Collection Still Proceeds

March 3, 2010

They say life is stranger than fiction. Could be that’s the case in this unusual wrongful death story.
This is a case of wrongful death involving Tom Lyon (deceased) and his killer and former neighbor, Rodney Heemstra. The facts of this unusual incident culminated in a single rifle shot to the head of Tom Lyon in 2003 in rural Warren County. Lyon and Heemstra had been having arguments over cattle-watering equipment and farmland. Lyon was unarmed at the time of the shooting. Heemstra chained his corpse to pickup track, dragged it into a field, and hid it in a cistern.

Heemstra was convicted of voluntary manslaughter and was later released from state prison in October 2008. While Heemstra was in jail, Lyon’s widow brought a civil suit against him and his family that resulted in punitive damages of $750,000 and $5.68 million in the form a judgment. The judge in that case ruled that Heemstra and his wife had made plans to defraud Lyon’s estate of the wrongful death judgment he had been ordered to pay. The precise words the judge used to describe the Heemstra’s actions were “conniving and motivated by greed.”

It’s now 2010 and the Lyon family has not seen one thin dime of the $5.68 million judgment or the $750,000 in punitive damages. The reason for this seems to be that the killer has disappeared. Even Heemstra’s lawyer of record is asking to be removed from the case.

Despite that one rather major glitch, the judge ruled that whether he was present or not didn’t matter, and efforts to collect on the judgment will continue by authorizing a court-appointed referee to sell Heemstra’s farmland and other real estate. The proceeds will be distributed by the court.

Even without all the twists and turns in this highly unusual wrongful death case, the plaintiff, Rona Lyons, would have had to still pay all the family bills, funeral expenses, legal expenses, mortgages, land taxes and other extremely important bills. It was not easy for her to lose her husband at the hands of a supposed neighbor and one time friend. The emotional pain and suffering would have been overwhelming.

This situation may have been helped by Lyons applying for litigation funding to allow her to wait the seven long years to justice for this death. If the case qualified, lawsuit funding may have allowed her to pay her bills immediately instead of going into debt waiting for a verdict or settlement and, in this case, a source of payment. Lawsuit financing is non-recourse funding and if she had lost her case, she would not have had to one red penny back.

Often a lawsuit cash advance is just a mere phone call away and about 48 hours in getting to the applicant. It’s an ace in the hole that lets those plaintiffs facing long legal battles wait for a fair settlement rather than take less money quickly because they need the cash.

Daren Monroe writes for Litigation Funding Corp. To learn more about lawsuit funding and litigation funding, visit Litigationfundingcorp.com.

Litigation Funding