New Federal Guidelines issued to address distracted driving

pulled_over_for_texting_and_drivingDid you know that the average person drives more than 290 feet for every five seconds they look away from their phone according to the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV)? Distracted driving is not limited to talking on a cell phone or sending a text message. Distracted driving is any activity that deters the vehicle’s operator from keeping their eyes and hands safely on the steering wheel at all times while the car is in motion or even paused at a red light. Activities that constitute as distracted driving include cell phone use, eating, applying makeup, brushing hair, and even changing the music in the vehicle.

If you have been injured because of a distracted driver, you may be entitled to compensation. Hiring an experienced personal injury attorney can help you get the justice you deserve. Read more below about how distracted driving can impact a life.

The danger of distracted driving

The United States Department of Transportation National Highway Traffic Safety and Administration (NHTSA) reported that approximately 424,000 people were injured in car crashes, and 3,154 killed because of distracted drivers in 2013. It is important to be a safe driver not only for the driver’s wellbeing, but also for the passengers and pedestrians outside of the vehicle. Lawmakers are targeting young people for texting and driving because drivers 20 years old and younger represent 23 percent of all fatal car crashes. They also represent 38 percent of drivers who cause car crashes because of their cell phone usage.

What happens if I get pulled over for texting and driving?

Distracted driving is a serious matter. It is a secondary offence in Florida to text while driving. According to the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) 46 states prohibit texting and driving and 37 states prohibit all phone use while behind the wheel for teen drivers.

As of right now you cannot be pulled over solely for texting and driving. To be pulled over you have to commit another traffic law violation while also texting. Examples of offenses that may result in a ticket for texting include speeding or driving through a red light. Under current vehicle and traffic law, if you are caught texting and driving, no points will be added to your license. However, two points will be added with the first offence if the law was broken in a school zone. Similarly, if your texting results in a crash, six points will be added to your license.

If you or someone you know experienced a car crash involving a distracted driver, or if you have been ticketed or charged with an offense involving distracted driving, The McIntyre Law Firm is here to help you through the legal process. Call our experienced attorneys today at (844) 511-4800.

Five Things to Look for in a Tampa Personal Injury Lawyer

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Accidents may be every day occurrences, but it only takes one slip to cause significant damage to yourself. Whether you have been harmed through a doctor’s mistake, a car crash, or by falling on someone else’s property, you may be compensated through a personal injury lawsuit. Trying to find an attorney that you trust to represent you can be tricky, especially while attempting to heal from the incident like being injured by a semi truck accident in question. Here are five things to keep in mind:

  1. Their focus: It is important the attorney you choose has experience with similar cases to yours. Someone with the right focus will have a thorough understanding and familiarity of the issue, as well as knowledge on how to circumvent complications that may arise. If they have worked in their focal area for long enough, they may have built up a reputation with insurance companies that will help your case.
  2. Experience: Ask your attorney how long they have been practicing, and how often they have seen cases like yours. If they have a history of winning a large percentage of cases similar to yours, and are well regarded in the legal community, you may feel more comfortable trusting them with your case. Reviewing past client reviews may help you determine whether you want to work with a particular lawyer.
  3. Personality: It is important to meet with your attorney before deciding to hire them. By sitting down face to face, you can discuss how they will handle your case, whether they think you will be able to settle, and if so, for how much. It will also give you a chance to see whether they are able to explain and walk you through the process, ultimately helping you decide whether they are they right lawyer for you. Since they will be serving as your advocate, you need to be able to trust them.
  4. Negotiation: Because nearly all personal injury lawsuits, except any lawyer for birth injuries, never make it to trial and are settled outside of court, it is important your lawyer will be able to work with and negotiate with insurance companies. However, it is also important that they will be willing to go to trial if need be.
  5. Payment: Before you decide on an attorney, discuss their fees with them. While this may not be the deciding factor, it will most likely play a large role in your decision, and you should be aware of the billing structure before you make any definite decisions.

Personal injury lawsuits can be complex, and are often the response to life-changing scenarios. To get help receiving compensation for an injury caused by another’s negligence, contact us at McIntyre Law Firm.

Updated Articles about the Curtis Reeves Stand Your Ground Hearing

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Image From ABC Action News

Stay up to date with with the latest on the Curtis Reeves Stand Your Ground Hearing. Attorney TJ Grimaldi with Client Nicole Oulson, wife of deceased Chad Oulson, are attending the hearing awaiting its outcome.

TJ Grimaldi on Crime Stories with Nancy Grace, a podcast:

Learn more about the case here: http://mcintyrefirm.com/the-2nd-anniversary-of-the-oulson-theater-shooting/ 

Arrive Alive, Florida campaign: What you need to know

Whenever a fatal crash occurs on one of our roads, somebody loses a son, daughter, brother, sister, spouse or friend. In an effort to keep Florida citizens safe on the road, the Florida Highway Patrol reinitiated the “Arrive Alive” campaign across the state.

Arrive Alive was originally introduced in 1970 when fatal car crashes were at a peak. The initiative helped plateau the number of deadly accidents until the past three years. Unfortunately, fatal crashes in Florida have recently been on an unexpected rise. According to the information given by DUI lawyers for hire, causes often include unclear signs or paint on the roads, cell phone distractions and DUI incidents.

Between 2014 and 2015, Florida faced a 17.7 percent increase of fatal car crashes. Major Joseph Franza, the commander of Florida Highway Patrol (FHP) Troop C, which services Hillsborough, Pinellas, Pasco, Polk, Hernando, Citrus and Sumter Counties, said at a news conference last month that he “would not stand for that,” reinitiating the Arrive Alive effort.

Rather than having FHP troops monitor roads that are quick and easy places to write tickets, Franza told attendees of the news conference that troops will patrol places where deadly crashes frequently occur. By targeting the specific locations of fatal crashes, necessary changes can be made to prevent them in the future. Sometimes these changes are as simple as a fresh paint job on road lines or adding additional, clear signage. Here is what happens after a DUI and what one can do to get the necessary help with such charges.

In every case, however, road safety starts with the drivers. Be cautious, attentive and responsible to keep yourself and others safe on the road so you can “Arrive Alive.”

If you or somebody you know has been involved in a personal injury case related to a car accident, you are not alone. At McIntyre Law Firm in Tampa, we have attorneys proficient in personal injury, especially regarding auto crashes and DUI cases.

If you or someone you know has been charged or arrested for any criminal traffic offense in the Tampa Bay Area, The McIntyre Law Firm in Tampa has experienced attorneys with decades of experience defending criminal defendants.

For a free consultation and evaluation of your case, call 844-511-4800 today.

I crashed my car – what if I don’t feel injured?

During moments of excitement, it can be challenging to notice if something is wrong. Our bodies go into survival mode, granting us a kick of adrenaline that sometimes keeps us from feeling pain. This adrenaline is helpful in the throes of an automobile crash but what do you do if you do not feel injured immediately after your accident?

At McIntyre Law Firm, we have helpful tips to keep in mind.

Give yourself time to evaluate possible injuries

Because of the adrenaline rush that frequently follows a car accident, crash victims feel fine at first. If you step out of your car and do not see any immediately dangerous outer injuries, you might just assume that you are unharmed. The ones In Rosemead area based personal injury lawyers can get legal help if ever in an accident or any other injury case.

Before brushing yourself off and saying “I’m fine,” take a moment to really get in touch with what your body is feeling. Immediately after a crash, your adrenaline levels will be higher, preventing you from feeling symptoms. Let that pass and then evaluate yourself. Do you have any scrapes, cuts or lacerations? Are you bleeding? Can you move your arms, legs and neck without trouble? The slip and fall injury cases require a good legal expert to make sure justice is served. If you are suffering from heavy collateral damage, then it is best to get a consultation from the attorneys who work on the cases of injured in a car accident in North Miami Beach as they are the one who submits a complete surveillance report of your accident which justifies your need for compensation which the court cannot refuse as your health condition is already proven in your court.

If you notice anything peculiar about how you look or feel after letting the adrenaline die down, do not ignore that.

Seek and accept immediate medical attention

Unfortunately, many symptoms of serious or even minor injuries take time to show up. Following your car accident, be sure to ask for medical attention as soon as possible. The truck accident lawyers in Green, Waters Ogle and McCarter can help when it comes to accident and injury related cases.

Paramedics ask a list of questions at the scene of a crash, and it can sometimes be overwhelming when you are still processing the shock of what just happened to you. Stay calm and ask them to repeat their questions if necessary. Pay attention to the specific symptoms they inquire about: dizziness, headache, shortness of breath, nausea, neck pain and more. If you are not feeling a particular symptom, answer their questions with “not yet,” or “not right now,” in the event those symptoms reveal themselves later.

If possible, go to the hospital or your doctor once you leave the scene of the crash in order to get another professional opinion and examination. Even if you do not feel any immediate pain, pay attention to how your body may develop more symptoms within the first 20 minutes, 2 hours, 8 hours, 24 hours, etc. It is better to keep a watchful eye and catch your injuries later than to say you feel fine and not catch them at all.

Wait before signing a settlement

Refrain from signing any releases until you have been properly examined for external and internal injuries after a car accident. If you sign any sort of release from an insurance company prior to your injuries revealing themselves, you cannot go back and ask for medical coverage for those injuries once you discover them.

Recovering from a car accident is never a fun task to handle, so do not handle it alone. Our lawyers at McIntyre Thanasides Bringgold Elliott Grimaldi & Guito, P.A. are here to assist you. Call us today at (844)511-4800 if you or someone you know has been involved in an automobile crash.

I Got Injured at a Friend’s House – What should I do?

injured_at_a_friends_houseHomeowner Insurance Claims: What You Need to Know

It’s all fun and games until someone gets hurt. To many people’s surprise, accidents happening within the home are more common than they seem. Instances like slip and fall accidents, food poisoning, deep cuts and even dog attacks are common causes for homeowner insurance claims.

Getting injured at a friend’s house can be an awkward situation to handle. Whatever the nature of your relationship with the homeowner is, we at McIntyre Law Firm believe that your safety and health come first.

If you were injured at a friend’s house, we strongly recommend you take these four steps towards protecting yourself and getting the compensation you deserve.

Notify the homeowner

It may be uncomfortable at first to ask the homeowner to provide you with their insurance information, especially if the homeowner is a friend or family member of yours. Regardless, you should ask the homeowner the name of his or her insurance company in the event your injury results in medical bills, prescription medications, the cost of additional doctor’s visits and more. You can get the coverage you need while still remaining civil with the homeowner.

Acquire your medical records

The homeowner might try to dispute that your injuries were obtained on his or her property. To prevent this from happening, obtain copies of your medical records as quickly as possible. For instance, if you fall down in your friend’s kitchen because the fridge was leaking and you end up suffering a herniated disc injury, it’s wise to have your medical records as proof that your disc injury happened as a result of the homeowner’s negligence and not from a previous accident.

Document, document, document

Take photos of your injuries as much as you can, gather statements from witnesses (if any) and keep track of your medical expenses caused by your injury on the homeowner’s property. It’s always a good idea to document the scene of the injury and keep track of whatever results from it.

Consult with a trusted lawyer

When in doubt, talk to a helpful professional. Our goal at McIntyre Law Firm is client care. The reason our attorneys stand out from all other Tampa Bay lawyers is because we truly care about granting you the service and justice you need.

If you are dealing with injuries from a slip and fall incident, our lawyers at McIntyre Thanasides Bringgold Elliott Grimaldi & Guito, P.A. are here to help you recover and receive the compensation you need. Call our attorneys today at (844)511-4800.

Slip and Fall Accidents: What you need to know

In a slip and fall legal case, it often feels like one person’s word against another. Injuries can happen upon falling down stairs, on a wet floor, on dangerously uneven ground, on a slick rainy sidewalk and more. Regardless of where or how the fall takes place, safety is top priority and justice follows closely behind, especially when someone’s injury is due to another’s negligence in maintaining the area, property or establishment.

If you or someone you know has suffered injuries from a slip and fall case, you can find the justice you seek. At McIntyre Law Firm, your well-being is our priority. Our Tampa lawyers can assist your case and bring closure to any trials caused by your injuries. Doubts like when can you claim compensation or how to claim it will be clarified and professionally handled with the help of the right lawyers.

Before filing your slip and fall claim, there are a few things you should know.

Was there a caution sign clearly visible?

Most people think if there was a “Caution: Wet Floor” sign at all present during the time of the slip and fall, the property owner has no responsibility for compensation or legal action. While this is may be true depending on specific circumstances, if the sign is not clearly visible to bystanders, the property owner may be found at fault for the slip and fall incident.

Were the property owners taking action to prevent injury?

In the Tampa Bay Area especially, flash flooding and slippery roads are a common occurrence. If you obtain injuries due to your slip and fall, survey the surroundings to see if the property owners had taken any clear precautions to prevent that from happening.

Were you behaving in a relatively safe manner during the time of your slip and fall?

According to Houston-located injury law firm, accidents happen, of course. However, the property owner may not be found liable if you were deliberately being unsafe or putting yourself in a position to suffer injury. If you were conducting in a reasonable manner and the cause of the slip and fall was unrelated to your behavior, the property owner can be responsible for compensation.

We at McIntyre Thanasides Bringgold Elliott Grimaldi & Guito, P.A. strive to support people in the Tampa Bay Area in a spectrum of legal issues. If you are dealing with injuries from a slip and fall incident, we are here to help you recover and gain the closure you need. Call our attorneys today at (844)511-4800.

What happens if your Uber driver gets in an automobile crash?

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When you click on that familiar Uber or Lyft logo and indicate where you are and where you want to go, there’s an assumption of ease. Most of the time, you’re picked up from your location quickly by a clean car that takes you to your destination for a fraction of the price. Generally, a pleasant experience. However, Ubers, Lyfts and other ride share cars are driven on the same roads with thousands of drivers each day. Crashes happen and when they do you may face a set of circumstances that differ from a typical car crash.

If you are in an Uber car and your driver gets in to a crash with another driver or a pedestrian, there are a set of procedures that you must follow to have the best chance to receive compensation. However, there are no guarantees. After a car crash in an Uber:

  1. Report the crash immediately: This step doesn’t differ from when you get into a crash with your own vehicle. However, along with contacting the police by making a call after a traffic accident and, eventually filing a claim with your insurance company, your driver will required to contact Uber to inform them of the crash. When dealing with Uber and other ride share platforms, it’s important to note that they are attempting to absolve themselves of as much responsibility as possible for crashes. Here’s a great post to read before hiring an accident attorney. One way they are attempting to do this is by lobbying state government to designate Uber drivers as independent contractors instead of employees. If they are considered independent contractors, Uber will not be held responsible should drivers get into car crashes. The responsibility would fall on the driver and their insurance company. However, they would be responsible if the drivers are considered employees of the company, just as businesses are responsible for their delivery drivers. At the time this article was written, legislation in Florida was still pending.
  2. Seek medical attention: Even if you don’t think that you’re injured, it’s important to seek medical attention. Injuries, at times, don’t appear until days later.
  3. Dealing with Uber and Insurance: Uber and other rideshare companies have insurance that covers passengers in case of injury while being transported. A representative of ride share’s insurance company will contact you in the days after the accident to receive information about the crash and assess the situation.
  4. Talk to an attorney: Receiving compensation from Uber’s insurance company or from an Uber driver may prove challenging. Ridesharing companies deal with numerous claims. They will work diligently to deny your claim. The driver’s insurance may not allow them to use their car for business purposes (a recent study showed that 77 percent of ride share drivers don’t have additional ridesharing insurance coverage). It’s critical to have representation on your side that will work diligently to ensure that the rideshare company is held accountable.

If you are in an accident while riding an Uber, contact personal injury attorneys at McIntyre Thanasides Bringgold Elliott Grimaldi & Guito, P.A. today. They will assess the situation and make the moves necessary to ensure that you receive the compensation you deserve. Contact us today at 844-511-4800.