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San Antonio Personal Injury Law Blog

What is the liability of a retail store owner for injuries?

All men and women are not treated equally when it comes to determining property owner liability for injuries in the event of an accident. A customer walking through a shopping mall in San Antonio, Texas, who slips on a wet floor might have a right to seek compensation, but more information is needed about the accident before any conclusion may be drawn.

Slip-and-fall accidents are just one type of mishap that can cause serious injuries to someone while on another person's property. An individual invited by a property owner to come onto his or her property to transact business, as in the case of a customer entering a grocery store, is entitled to expect that the owner has taken reasonable steps to make the premises safe. This is not, however, a guarantee of absolute safety.

Nurse sues hospital in Texas Ebola case

Ordinarily medical malpractice cases, and their legal cousin hospital negligence, occur when a patient sues a doctor or other health care professional, or the facility where that person works, or both. Less common are instances in which one of the medical professionals themselves files the lawsuit, but a new case in Texas is an example.

Last year the attempted treatment of a man who arrived in Texas from Africa and who eventually died from symptoms of the Ebola virus made national news when two nurses at the hospital where he was treated contracted the disease themselves. Both nurses survived, but one of them has now filed suit against her employer.

Can I sue the government for premises liability?

A person who suffered an injury on a piece of property frequently employs premises liability law as a cause of action against the owner or holder of property. Most of the time this source of liability concerns claims against private property owners. These can include landowners, homeowners, and most businesses.

But what if the owner of the property where the injury took place is either the Texas state government, or a county, city or town? Does it make a difference if the harm took place on public property instead of private?

Work accident victim dies in fall at Texas oil field

The recent death of a worker in an oil field accident serves as another example of the often-unsafe working conditions Texas workers face. It also illustrates the important role played by workers' compensation benefits as a resource upon which workers and their families may rely when a work accident victim is injured or dies.

Fellow workers in a rural Texas oil field heard the sound of a falling hardhat. They looked up into the rig and saw an unconscious 40-year-old worker hung up in his safety harness. The injured worker appeared to have fallen while working high above the base of the oil rig when he lost his footing and fell. 

Dangerous conditions can be a source of negligence liability

Negligence cases in the state of Texas are often thought of in terms of an individual's behavior causing harm to someone else, such as an inattentive driver striking a pedestrian or another vehicle, or a surgeon accidentally leaving behind a sponge in a patient.

Less well known is negligence in the form of a failure to act when action would be necessary to prevent harm, or negligence that is evidenced by dangerous physical conditions; often these two forms of negligence can be found together in the form of premises liability.

How worker's compensation disputes are handled in Texas

Under ideal circumstances, if you are injured at work, and your Texas employer has workers' compensation coverage, applying for and receiving benefits should be simple. But sometimes misunderstandings arise which can complicate the process and may require the application of dispute resolution procedures.

If you find yourself in a dispute with your employer or its insurer about whether you are entitled to receive workers' compensation benefits, then Texas has in place a multi-step process to resolve the matter.

Why are brain injury awards so large?

Given that settlements often reflect lower dollar sums than might be the case with a jury award if the matter went to trial, this can lead to the question of how can such an injury end up costing so much. The answer lies, at least in part, in the long and difficult path to recovery that a traumatic brain injury often requires on the part if its sufferer. 

Recently we wrote about a case in Texas involving a car accident-related traumatic brain injury that resulted in an out-of-court settlement of more than $2 million. 

How does workers' compensation deal with a work-related death?

Often, the most important and valuable asset that a person has is his or her ability to work to provide for the needs of a family. Many workers know this and take some action, such as purchasing life insurance or creating a special savings account, to protect their families in the event of their untimely death. When a worker's life is tragically cut short in a workplace accident, such preplanning is not always enough to fully compensate the family for the loss of income.

Fortunately, workers' compensation death benefits are available in Texas for the beneficiaries of workers killed in workplace accidents. People who may qualify as beneficiaries include the spouse, children who are minors or who are adults under age 25 and still enrolled in school, legally dependent grandchildren, or other family members. Additionally, non-dependent parents of the victim may be eligible to receive benefits when there are no other surviving dependent family members

What kinds of damages are recoverable for a brain injury?

Brain injuries can take various forms, from a mild concussion to open wounds in which the brain itself has been exposed. Given this spectrum of injury severity, it is logical that the types of damages that a brain injury victim may be able to recover, if the injury has been caused by another, are also subject to variation.

All injuries, including brain injuries, can result in direct medical costs. These include medical examination costs and medical treatment costs that may be required in the short term to treat the injury. Thus, someone who has suffered a traumatic brain injury that results in a concussion can sue to recoup expenses connected with these kinds of direct expenses, even if he or she is not otherwise harmed.

Brain injury long-term financial impacts can be devastating

In May of last year, we wrote a post about a drunk driving accident in Texas that resulted in a $2 million settlement. The underlying injury in that case was a traumatic brain injury, and it serves as an example of a larger phenomenon: the enormous financial costs that can arise in connection with brain injury accidents.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is not only concerned with illnesses connected to infectious diseases, but it also reports on many types of debilitating events that can overtake Americans, including brain injuries. In one year alone, for which the CDC has kept statistics, the financial figures for severe traumatic brain injuries nationwide have been staggering: more than $75 billion was spent. The lion's share of that money was connected to both direct and indirect medical expenses for hospitalization and treatment.

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  • Richard Tinsman & Daniel J.T. Sciano. Board Certified | Texas Board of Legal Specialization
  • American Association for Justice | formerly the Association of Trial Lawyers of America (ATLA) | Member 2013
  • AV | Lexis Nexis | Martindale-Hubbell | Peer Review Rated for Ethical Standards in Legal Ability
  • Daniel J.T. Sciano, 2003-2012 and Stephen Lazor, 2010, 2011, and 2012. Super Lawyers