Attorney Portrait Personal Injury

Do I Need a Lawyer After a Car Accident in Ohio?

| Read Time: 4 minutes

If you were involved in a car accident that someone else caused, you could be entitled to pursue legal action. You could be eligible to recover compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, and other damages. If you’re wondering when to get an attorney for a car accident, the following information can help you take the next step. When you do need an experienced Ohio car accident lawyer, call on Aaron L. Bensinger of Balyeat, Leahy, Daley, Miller & Bensinger, LLC. We provide compassionate representation for auto accident victims throughout northwest Ohio, and we will fight to get you the compensation you deserve. What Types of Cases Need a Car Accident Lawyer? One of the most common questions we hear from Ohio car crash victims is, Should I get an attorney after a car accident? The answer to this question depends on multiple factors. Typically, after a car accident, you need a lawyer if you suffered significant injuries that could require extensive treatment. You likely need a lawyer if your injuries will prevent you from working for more than a week or so or if you are at risk for having permanent or long-term problems. You might also benefit from having an attorney if the circumstances of the collision are in question. An experienced car accident attorney has the resources to investigate the accident and collect the evidence necessary to establish fault and liability. With a persuasive, well-documented case, the insurance company might be more likely to take your claim seriously. As a result, your lawyer could negotiate a favorable settlement on your behalf. Finally, if you need to pursue your case through a civil lawsuit, an attorney can be invaluable. Your lawyer and legal team will handle everything for you so you can focus on your recovery. What Types of Cases Might Not Need an Attorney? In some cases, you could successfully negotiate your own car accident settlement. For example, if you suffered only minor injuries and recovered quickly, your settlement value will likely be small. You might not need any legal assistance if the crash was clearly the fault of the other driver (especially if the police cited the other driver) or if the driver admitted to being at fault. Often, the insurance company will make a fair offer that covers your actual damages—medical bills and lost wages, typically—plus a little extra for your time and trouble. If the insurance company is cooperative and willing to do the right thing, having a lawyer on your side might not provide any significant benefit. The problem with this scenario is that you might not know whether the insurance company plans to play fair until it’s too late. How to Determine If It’s Worth It to Have a Car Accident Attorney Having an experienced attorney on your side can provide many benefits. If you aren’t sure whether getting a lawyer is right for you, these are some of the factors that suggest you might be better off having legal representation for your car accident claim. You Don’t Know the Extent of Your Injuries Sometimes injuries like whiplash don’t present symptoms right away. If you act too quickly to accept a settlement and later discover that your injuries are worse than you originally believed, you may not have any legal grounds to pursue further action. You Do Know the Extent of Your Injuries and They Are Severe If you suffered significant injuries, required hospitalization, or will need extensive treatment, talk to a lawyer. Insurance companies often try to undervalue your damages or claim that you had pre-existing conditions that caused your injuries to be more serious. You Have No Way to Get Medical Treatment To recover fully and get your life back on track, you need comprehensive medical care. If you can’t afford to pay your doctor bills, you should talk to an attorney. Your lawyer can help you get the treatment you need now. Your Injuries Affect Your Ability to Work If you have to miss work because of your injuries or if you can’t perform your job any longer, talk to an attorney as soon as possible. Getting fair compensation for lost wages and diminished earning capacity can be difficult to do on your own. You should also consider getting a lawyer if the insurance company tries to deny the claim or suggests the accident was your fault. Most attorneys take personal injury cases on a contingency basis, so you won’t have to pay any legal fees until your case is settled and your lawyer has recovered compensation for your damages. Talk to a Car Accident Lawyer from Bensinger Law So is it worth it to get a lawyer for a car accident? Ultimately this is a decision that you must make. Before you decide one way or the other, take advantage of the free consultation we offer. We will answer your questions and explain the various options you have for pursuing a claim. We are committed to providing all the information you need to make an informed decision about your future. To schedule a consultation or to speak with an experienced Ohio car accident lawyer, call or contact us online today.

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Attorney Portrait Personal Injury

Common Types of Car Accident Injuries in Ohio

| Read Time: 3 minutes

Car crash injuries can leave you incapacitated and unable to work or handle your daily tasks. In Ohio, many of the most common types of auto accident injuries are serious or even life-threatening. Aaron L. Bensinger of Balyeat, Leahy, Daley, Miller & Bensinger, LLC is an experienced car accident lawyer serving clients throughout northwest Ohio, including Elida, Lima, Kenton, and Perry Counties. If you or a loved one sustained serious injuries, contact us today to learn whether you may be entitled to recover compensation for your medical bills, lost income, and emotional pain and suffering. What Are the Most Common Types of Ohio Car Accident Injuries? Motor vehicle collisions can cause a variety of injuries, ranging from mild bumps and bruises to severe or life-threatening conditions. Some of the most common types of serious auto accident injuries include: Broken bones, Dislocated joints, Head injuries and concussions, Traumatic brain injuries, Neck and spine injuries, Internal injuries, and Lost digits or limbs. Car accident victims can be left with permanent scars and disfigurement. Severe nerve damage and spinal cord trauma can leave victims paralyzed. Traumatic brain injuries can result in permanent cognitive impairment or leave the victim in a coma. After a car accident, you should seek medical treatment immediately, even if you believe you weren’t hurt. Shock can mask pain and lead accident victims to believe they did not sustain any injuries. Soft tissue damage such as whiplash can take days or even weeks to show symptoms. Seeing a qualified medical professional immediately will ensure that you get the comprehensive treatment you need. Your medical records will also serve to demonstrate the extent of your injuries should you elect to pursue legal action. Do I Need a Lawyer to Get a Car Accident Settlement? You aren’t required to have a lawyer to pursue a car accident claim or to get a settlement. However, having one can provide many clear advantages. If you weren’t badly injured or you didn’t suffer substantial damages, you might not need an attorney to get the compensation you deserve. Before you make any decisions about your claim, however, you should at least consult with a lawyer to explore your options. To help you make the best decision for you and your future, Bensinger Law offers a free consultation and case evaluation. When Should I Hire a Car Accident Attorney? After getting medical attention and treatment, your next move should be calling an attorney. Because most injury accident claims can be settled through the at-fault party’s insurance company, acting quickly can help resolve your case as quickly as possible. Under the Ohio statute of limitations, you have only two years from the date of your accident to take legal action. If you don’t file a lawsuit within that time, you could relinquish your legal right to recover compensation. Talking to a lawyer can help ensure you get the compensation you deserve. Contact Bensinger Law Today for a Free Consultation If you have an injury from a car accident, don’t talk to the insurance company or give a statement until you talk to an experienced personal injury lawyer. Anything you say in your statement can be used against you by the insurance company. Contact us today to schedule your no-cost case review and learn more about the potential compensation value of your Ohio car accident injuries.

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Attorney Portrait Personal Injury

What Is the Average Truck Accident Settlement in Ohio?

| Read Time: 3 minutes

If you were hurt in a truck accident in Ohio, you may have the right to pursue legal action. If the truck driver or another party caused the accident, you could be entitled to compensation for your medical bills and other damages. As an accident victim, you are likely curious about the average semi-truck accident settlement amount. You may also wonder what factors affect your potential settlement value and how you can ensure you get the compensation you need to pay your medical bills and living expenses. Aaron L. Bensinger of Balyeat, Leahy, Daley, Miller & Bensinger, LLC helps injury victims throughout northwest Ohio. Having an experienced truck accident lawyer on your side will help ensure you get the justice and fair financial compensation you deserve. Calculating the Value of Commercial Truck Accident Settlements Every semi-truck accident is different, and every victim suffers a unique set of injuries and other damages. For this reason, we can’t easily establish an average Ohio truck settlement value. When we assist a commercial truck accident victim with their case, we calculate their claim value based on physical, emotional, and financial damages. Depending on the type and extent of your injuries—and how those injuries might affect your future—you could be entitled to recover compensation for some or all of the following: Emergency medical care, Hospital visits and treatment, Physician and surgeon services, Medications and medical devices, Rehab and physical therapy, Lost income and benefits, Pain and suffering, and Emotional trauma. If your injuries affect your ability to work or if you can’t resume your former job duties because of your injuries, you could be eligible for compensation for future lost income and lost earning capacity. If you suffered permanent injuries, scarring, or disability, you could also pursue compensation for diminished quality of life and other non-economic damages. Be careful of online truck settlement value calculators because they can’t provide an accurate claim value without analyzing all the details of your case. The best way to determine what your case value might be is to consult with an experienced personal injury attorney. The Challenges of Recovering a Truck Accident Settlement Unlike most car accident claims, commercial truck accident cases pose a unique set of challenges. Trucking companies (and their insurance carriers) will go to great lengths to minimize their financial liability after an accident. The insurance company might request a recorded statement from you, hoping you will say something they can use to reduce your claim’s value or to deny your claim completely. Never provide a statement without consulting an attorney. Otherwise you could put your legal right to compensation at risk. The sooner you can put a lawyer to work on your claim, the sooner they can launch an investigation and start gathering evidence. Time is of the essence, as evidence can be lost or destroyed quickly after an 18-wheeler or commercial truck crash. Having an experienced truck accident attorney on your side will help protect your legal rights. An attorney will also help you fight for the maximum possible compensation. How Long Does It Take to Get a Truck Accident Settlement? Because every case is different, the time it takes to resolve your claim will depend on several factors. The first step in the process is determining who was at fault for your accident. Our investigation will determine whether the truck driver, the trucking company, the shipper, the equipment manufacturer, or other parties caused or contributed to the crash. Once we identify the at-fault party, we will submit a demand to that party’s insurance company. For most of our truck injury clients, we are able to negotiate a settlement with the insurance company. This is typically the preferable outcome because it gets a check into your hand as quickly as possible. If we can’t negotiate a settlement with the insurance company, we have the option of filing a lawsuit and pursuing your case in court. Although the Ohio statute of limitations allows two years from the date of an injury accident to file a lawsuit, the sooner you contact an attorney and get started on your case, the sooner you can get a resolution and settlement. Contact an Ohio Truck Accident Lawyer Today for Help You don’t have to fight this battle on your own. Contact Aaron L. Bensinger today to learn more about your options for pursuing legal action. Aaron has extensive experience with truck accident cases, and he understands how to get the results you deserve. A free initial consultation can help you learn more about the potential value of your Ohio truck accident settlement.

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Attorney Portrait Personal Injury

How Much Can You Sue for Pain and Suffering in Ohio?

| Read Time: 3 minutes

When you are injured in an accident caused by someone else’s negligence, you have the right to recover financial compensation. Your economic damages include items like your medical expenses and loss of earnings.  You may also be wondering how much money can you sue for pain and suffering. Ohio law is complicated when it comes to compensation for non-economic damages like pain and suffering. To better understand your potential claim value, you need to speak with a Northwest Ohio personal injury lawyer.   Determining If You Can Sue for Pain and Suffering Damages To determine whether you can sue for pain and suffering damages, you must first look at liability in your case. Before you can recover any compensation for your injuries, you must be able to prove liability against the defendant. That means the defendant must have: Owed a duty to you; Breached that duty; and Proximately caused your injuries through the breach of duty. Once you have successfully met the burden of proof for liability, you still have to prove your damages. You must be able to show you endured pain and suffering physically and/or emotionally. Factors courts look at when calculating your pain and suffering damages include: The severity of your injuries; How your injuries impacted your career, daily life, family, and relationships; The length of time it took you to heal; Whether future treatment is needed; and What your overall discomfort levels and pain were. These are all subjective figures. To help support your claim for pain and suffering, you want to have documentation from your medical providers as to your physical and emotional state of mind. They should discuss your pain and suffering, what medications you are taking or were previously prescribed, etc. It’s helpful to have family or friends who can write down or give testimony on your behalf. Your own written statement or testimony is also vital in helping others understand what you were going through. How Much Money Can You Sue for Pain and Suffering? The amount of financial compensation you can get for pain and suffering will vary. The more serious your injuries are, the larger settlement you are likely to receive.  Ohio does not have a cap on the amount of compensation you can recover for non-economic damages in catastrophic injury cases. Catastrophic injuries would be things like an amputated limb, permanent disabilities, or a physical deformity.  However, for non-catastrophic injuries, Ohio caps damages at $250,000 or three times the economic damages, whichever is greater. However, there is a maximum cap of $350,000 per plaintiff, or $500,000 for multiple plaintiffs. Steps to Take After Your Injury If you were not transported from the scene via ambulance, you still need to seek medical treatment right away. If you wait two or three weeks to seek medical treatment, the defendant’s insurance company may claim you were not that injured or that something happened after the initial accident. You do not want to give the defense any opportunity to poke holes in your case or raise doubt about how seriously you were injured.   Resolving Your Pain and Suffering Case Out of Court Understandably, you might be wondering whether it’s better to go to trial and how much do insurance companies pay for pain and suffering? There is no exact amount, but they often use some variation of a formula. It could be something like three times your economic damages for moderate to severe cases or five times your economic losses in catastrophic cases. However, every carrier values claims differently. This is why you want an experienced Northwest Ohio personal injury attorney on your side. We will advise you whether it makes more sense to resolve your case out of court or whether it’s worth taking your case to trial. Many personal injury cases resolve out of court, even before a lawsuit is filed at all. If we need to file a lawsuit on your behalf, it doesn’t mean your case will drag on for years until the court sets a trial date. We will continue to work with the defense to resolve your case for its full value. How Our Lawyers Can Help To help you maximize the amount of pain and suffering damages you can receive, we will conduct a thorough independent investigation on our own. Our goal is to prove liability against the other party and maximize the compensation you’ll receive. We will gather all necessary evidence, collect medical documentation, and hire any experts required to prove you deserve the amount of pain and suffering you’re demanding. If your case proceeds to litigation, we will handle all the trial preparation. We have the experience and the resources necessary to cover all the up-front expenses and hire the best experts available. If you need representation to sue for pain and suffering damages, let us help fight for you. Contact Bensinger Law today to schedule an initial consultation.

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Attorney Portrait Personal Injury

Ohio Car Accident Laws | Info for Injured Victims

| Read Time: 3 minutes

Even if you follow all applicable traffic laws and drive defensively, there is no guarantee you won’t be involved in a car accident at some point. Car accidents can be a scary experience for anyone. It’s essential to remain calm afterward and remember the Ohio car accident laws. You need to know your responsibilities and your rights, which can improve your ability to file a claim later on. If you need legal assistance after a car accident, let our skilled Northwest car accident lawyers show you how we can help. Your Responsibilities After an Accident Understandably, you may feel overwhelmed after an accident and be unsure of what to do. Most importantly, you don’t want to leave the accident scene. If your injuries are not too severe and you can safely do so, get photos of vehicle damage, road conditions, and injuries. Get the contact information for any witnesses while you wait for the police to respond and prepare a report. In an accident where your injuries are not severe enough to warrant transport via ambulance, you should seek medical care and report the claim to your insurance company right away. Many carriers have requirements that the claim be reported within a specific time frame. Does the Other Driver Have Insurance? Determining whether the other driver has coverage is important. When you report your claim to your insurance carrier, they will file a report with the other party’s insurance. That insurance company will do a coverage investigation to determine whether coverage applies before deciding on liability. If the other party does not have applicable liability coverage, you will want to pursue a claim through your own Uninsured Motorist (UM) coverage if you purchased UM/UIM under your own policy.   Proving Fault Proving fault against the other party is necessary before you are entitled to recover any compensation for your damages. If there were multiple other vehicles involved, the process could become even more complicated. To successfully prove negligence, you must show the other party owed you a duty of care, they breached that duty, and that breach caused your injuries. Ohio car accident laws use comparative negligence to resolve claims. This means that as long as you are not more than 50% at fault, you can still recover a portion of your damages. However, the amount will be reduced by your percentage of fault. That means if a jury finds you 20% at fault, you will receive 80% of your damages. Statute of Limitations In Ohio, you only have up to two years to file a lawsuit for injuries resulting from an auto accident. Ohio auto accident laws are stringent on this deadline. Failure to file within the specified time limit could result in you receiving no compensation at all. When Insurance Companies Get Involved When presenting a claim to the other party’s insurance company, remember that they are not on your side. Their main goal is to save money, and their loyalty is to their insured, not you. This means they may deny liability outright or offer you an amount that is far less than your claim is worth. You should never sign any documents or agree to a settlement amount without first talking with a knowledgeable attorney. How Our Lawyers Can Help Deciphering Ohio auto accident laws can be complicated. You need someone on your side who understands the claims process and the applicable laws. When you retain our Northwest Ohio car accident attorneys, we will handle your claim from start to finish, so you can concentrate on your recovery. We will conduct an independent investigation, collect the necessary evidence, negotiate with the defendant’s insurance, and keep an eye on the statute of limitations. If your case needs to be resolved through a trial, we have the experience and resources to make that happen. Don’t let your fear of the legal system keep you from pursuing the compensation you deserve.  Contact Bensinger Law today to schedule a consultation and learn more about how we can help you after an Ohio car accident. With our years of experience handling Ohio car accident claims, you can be sure we won’t let the insurance company push you into settling for less than your case is worth. 

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Attorney Portrait Personal Injury

Injured in a Wide Load Accident in Ohio?

| Read Time: 3 minutes

Trucks transporting wide load and oversize cargo must follow stringent rules. When a driver is hauling anything beyond the normal load, they will need to obtain special hauling permits. However, even the safest drivers who follow all the regulations can put others at risk by transporting oversized cargo. If you were injured in a wide load accident in Ohio, you need a skilled Northwest Ohio truck accident lawyer on your side. How Wide Load Accidents Can Happen Large truck accidents happen every day all across the country. Sometimes negligent drivers cause these accidents, while other times, equipment failure and adverse weather conditions may be contributing factors. Wide load and oversize truck accidents can occur in several different ways. Some of the most common reasons accidents happen can include: The extra weight of the cargo causes the tires to blow out; A higher center of gravity combined with a heavier load make the truck even more unstable; Weight distribution is concentrated in only one area of the trailer, making the truck difficult to control; The cargo may come loose, falling onto the roadway; and The driver’s capability to brake is hindered, especially on roads with elevation changes. Accidents involving oversize or wide load trucks can be complicated claims to pursue. You want an attorney who has experience representing clients in large truck accidents. At Bensinger Law, we have years of experience helping Northwest Ohio residents with all their injury claims, including oversize load accidents. Regulations These Trucks Must Follow All truck drivers and their employers are required to follow the mandated federal and state trucking laws. When hauling a wide or oversize load, there are additional regulations they must follow. One of the most critical steps is to get a special hauling permit. The permit will specify a route the driver must follow. It will also address where the driver will stop for fuel, food, and rest. Drivers hauling wide loads must stay in the right lane, use warning signs and flags, and transport cargo only within the restricted hours noted on the permit. Why These Accidents Are Much Different from Other Motor Vehicle Accidents Any accident involving a large truck is different from one involving a passenger vehicle because of the weight difference. Two smaller passenger vehicles that collide are unlikely to incur the same amount of damage that a large truck and small vehicle would. The risk of catastrophic injuries and fatalities are typically higher with truck accidents, even in seemingly minor collisions. How Can a Lawyer Help Pursue Compensation in an Oversize Load Accident? After suffering injuries in a wide load accident in Ohio, you want an attorney on your side. Pursing a claim against a trucking company is complex. When you retain an attorney early on in the claims process, we will conduct an investigation and preserve all critical evidence. We will verify whether the trucking company complied with all the requirements. When there is enough evidence, we will present a demand on your behalf. If your case does not resolve through negotiations, we will prepare to take it to trial. We have plenty of experience in the courtroom and aren’t afraid to stand up to these large trucking and transport companies. Contact Us If you were injured in a wide load accident in Ohio, contact Bensinger Law today. Let our skilled Northwest Ohio truck accident lawyers help you get the compensation you deserve. We will put our years of experience to work, so you don’t have to navigate the legal system’s challenges alone.

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Attorney Portrait Personal Injury

What Is the Average Car Accident Settlement in Ohio?

| Read Time: 3 minutes

Being injured in a car accident can be a traumatic experience. If someone else’s negligence caused the accident, you likely want to pursue a claim for your damages. You might also be wondering what people typically receive for their car accident settlement amounts. Average payouts differ in every personal injury case. That is because no two car accidents are exactly alike. To understand what your individual case is worth, you need to speak with a skilled Northwest Ohio car accident lawyer. What Is the Average Car Accident Settlement in Ohio? As initially stated, there is no absolute number that defines a car accident settlement’s average. Even two very similar accidents will have some disparities that lead to different claim values. No matter how severe your injuries are and how much you think your claim is worth, you can expect the insurance company to offer significantly less. You need to provide strong evidence of liability against the other party and documents to support your treatment to successfully recover compensation for your damages. Your best chance at maximizing your claim value requires hiring a Lima car accident attorney like Aaron Bensinger at Bensinger Law. Factors That Affect a Car Accident Settlement’s Average Many factors influence the average automobile accident settlement. The severity of your injuries is a significant factor. Someone who suffered only mild whiplash and a sore back is not going to receive the same compensation as someone who sustained spinal damage that required surgery and months of rehabilitation. Insurance companies look at what kind of treatment you sought, how long you were treated, whether the treatment was necessary, and the cost of your treatment. In addition to the cost of your current medical treatment, other economic damages include your time off work, vehicle repairs, etc. In addition to economic damages, you may be eligible to receive compensation for non-economic damages, which include: Physical pain and suffering; Future loss of earnings; Future medical treatment; Disability or disfigurement; and Mental pain and anguish. Be advised that Ohio law limits your recovery for pain and suffering in non-catastrophic injury accidents. In some personal injury matters, non-economic damages are capped at $250,000 or three times the number of your economic damages, whichever amount is higher. Overall, they cannot exceed $350,000 for one plaintiff or $500,000 if there are multiple plaintiffs. What to Expect from Car Insurance Companies If you attempt to handle a car accident claim on your own, you can expect the insurance companies to take advantage of your inexperience. Liability adjusters may be friendly and let you believe they are on your side, but they are not. The other party’s insurance company is looking out for their insured, not you. Be careful of what you reveal in verbal or written communications. They will try to get you to give a recorded statement right away. You should never give a statement without counsel, as the insurance company is looking for evidence that would allow them to deny your claim. How Long Do I Have to File a Car Accident Lawsuit in Ohio? Ohio law states that for injuries sustained in a car accident, you must file a lawsuit within two years. There may be a few circumstances that alter this timeline, but don’t assume they apply to you. If you fail to file within the allotted time, your claim will likely be barred. Even if you were in negotiations with the insurance company for a settlement, they are under no obligation to offer you anything once the deadline has passed. How an Attorney Can Help You Through This Process Hiring an attorney can help protect your rights and recover the financial compensation you deserve. We will conduct an independent investigation and handle all communication with the at-fault party’s insurance company. Instead of you trying to negotiate a settlement amount, we will negotiate on your behalf. Your attorney will also make sure a lawsuit is filed within the statute of limitations. If your case does not resolve and needs to go to trial, we will prepare your case, hire any necessary experts, and front the fees and costs. At Bensinger Law, our top priority is to help you recover the maximum amount of compensation possible. Don’t let the insurance company take advantage of you and try to resolve your case for far less than its actual value. Contact Bensinger Law today to schedule an initial consultation. With our years of experience handling Ohio car accident cases, we will help you recover the financial compensation you deserve.

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Attorney Portrait Personal Injury

Ohio Dog Bite Law | Info for Injured Victims

| Read Time: 3 minutes

Being attacked by a dog is a terrifying experience that no one should have to go through. Ohio dog bite laws make dog owners responsible for the actions of their animals. A keeper or harborer of a dog—such as a dog walker—may also be held responsible for a dog’s actions. If you suffered injury from a dog bite or other dog attack, you have the right to seek compensation. An Ohio dog bite lawyer can help you determine whether you have a case. How Does the Ohio Dog Bite Statute Work? Ohio dog bite law imposes strict liability for injuries caused by dogs. This means that you don’t have to prove negligence to seek compensation. Dog owners are responsible to protect the public from their dog, even if the dog has never bitten someone or shown any aggressive tendencies. And dog bite laws don’t apply just to bites. You can get compensation for any injury or property damage caused by a dog. So if a dog knocked you to the ground or destroyed your expensive landscaping, you may have a claim. What Is the Difference Between Strict Liability and Negligence? Strict liability and negligence are two alternatives for proving liability. Most of the time, you have to prove negligence to recover damages in a personal injury case. This means that you have to prove someone caused your damages by breaching a duty of care, such as by acting carelessly or recklessly. Strict liability applies to circumstances involving inherent dangers that no amount of care can fully guard against. For accidents governed by strict liability, like Ohio dog bites, you can get compensation without proving that anyone did anything wrong. You can pursue a dog bite case in Ohio based on either negligence or strict liability. When Would I Bring a Negligence Claim in a Dog Bite Case? When a dog injures you, you can seek compensatory damages based on strict liability for things like: Medical bills, Property damage, Pain and suffering, Disfigurement, and Lost wages. However, you can’t seek punitive damages in a strict liability case. Punitive damages are reserved for cases where the defendant behaved egregiously and deserves to be punished. If you think that this occurred in your case, you would need to prove not only that the defendant was negligent, but that they were grossly negligent. Gross negligence occurs when someone acts intentionally or with reckless disregard for the safety of others. For example, if the owner knew that their dog was aggressive and had caused serious injury before, but the owner let the dog run around the neighborhood unsupervised, you might be able to show that they were grossly negligent. Are There Exceptions I Should Be Aware of? There are three main exceptions that might prevent you from recovering damages under the dog bite laws in Ohio: You provoked the dog by “teasing, tormenting, or abusing” it; You were attempting to commit a crime; or You were trespassing at the time of the attack. Solicitors are explicitly protected by the Ohio dog bite laws, even if they did not have proper solicitation permits, as long as they were on the property only for the purpose of soliciting and didn’t provoke the dog. How Long Do I Have to File a Dog Bite Claim? The Ohio statute of limitations for personal injury applies to dog bite claims. It gives you two years from the date of the injury to file suit. If you do not file within the limitations period, you may be barred from pursuing compensation. How Can I Start My Claim? If you suffered injury caused by a dog in Ohio, you should contact a dog bite attorney right away. Aaron Bensinger has helped many clients throughout Northwest Ohio with their dog bite claims, and he is well-versed in Ohio dog bite law. He has recovered hundreds of thousands of dollars for victims of personal injury just like you. Call or contact Bensinger Law today for a free consultation, and learn how Aaron can help with your claim.

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Attorney Portrait Personal Injury

Understanding Ohio Slip and Fall Law

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Slip and fall accidents send more than a million people to the emergency room each year. Ohio premises liability law lets you recover damages from a slip and fall accident caused by someone else’s negligence. If you have suffered serious injuries as a result of a slip and fall, a premises liability claim can help you pay for medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages. An experienced premises liability attorney in Ohio can help you understand your rights under Ohio slip and fall law. They can also help you estimate your damages and negotiate with insurance companies for the full compensation you deserve. How Long Do I Have to File a Premises Liability Claim? The statute of limitations in Ohio gives you two years from the date of the accident to file your claim. If you do not file on time, you will most likely lose your opportunity to seek damages. It is always a good idea to contact a personal injury attorney as soon as possible after your accident. Getting an early start will improve your chances of success by allowing your attorney to investigate while evidence is fresh. You can also begin negotiations with the insurance company and possibly even settle without needing to file a lawsuit. If it has been more than two years since your injury, it still may be worth talking to an attorney. They can tell you if there are exceptions to the statute of limitations that might extend your time to file. For example, if you were injured when you were mentally incompetent or a minor, the statute of limitations will be paused (tolled) until your limitation is removed. How to Prove Negligence in a Slip and Fall Premises Liability Case To recover damages for a slip and fall accident under Ohio premises liability law, you have to prove four elements: duty, breach, causation, and damages. Duty First, you have to prove that the defendant had a duty to keep their premises safe for you. The extent of that duty depends on the relationship between you and the defendant.  For example, business owners owe a high duty of care to customers. They must keep their premises free from dangers they know about or should be aware of. On the other hand, a person in Ohio owes only a minimum duty to trespassers. In most cases, the only duty to trespassers is to avoid “willful, wanton, or reckless conduct” that is likely to cause injury. Breach Next, you have to show that the defendant breached their duty to you. For example, a grocery store might breach its duty by failing to clean up a spill in a reasonable time after it is discovered. Causation You also have to show that the breach caused your injury. For example, if there was a hazardous spill on the floor, but the real reason you fell was that your friend pushed you, it will be difficult to show causation. Damages Finally, you have to show that you suffered damages as a result of your injury. A bruised tailbone that doesn’t require any medical care or time off work will not result in a damages award. How an Attorney Can Help with Your Ohio Slip and Fall Case If you suffered injuries in a slip and fall accident, contact Aaron Bensinger of Bensinger Law today. Aaron has represented many clients in the Northwest Ohio region with cases just like yours. Aaron is a strong and passionate advocate who is not intimidated by aggressive insurance companies. He understands Ohio slip and fall law and will fight for the compensation you deserve.

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Attorney Portrait Personal Injury

Ohio Personal Injury Statute of Limitations

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When you suffer injury as a result of someone else’s negligence, you deserve compensation. But did you know that your time to seek compensation is limited? The amount of time you have to file a lawsuit in Ohio is governed by the statute of limitations that applies to your claim. If you do not file before the deadline, you will likely lose your chance to recover for your injury. It is important to consult a personal injury attorney as soon as possible after your accident to ensure that you file your claim on time. If the statute of limitations has expired, your attorney can advise you of any exceptions that might give you additional time to file. How Long Is the Ohio Statute of Limitations for Personal Injury? The statute of limitations in Ohio for personal injury is two years from the date of the injury. If you miss the deadline, you will most likely lose your opportunity to obtain compensation. This two-year Ohio negligence statute of limitations applies to things like: Car accidents, Truck accidents, Dog bites, Product liability, and Slip-and-fall accidents. For wrongful death cases, you must file a claim within two years of the date of death. What Happens If I Miss the Deadline? If you file a personal injury or wrongful death claim after the statute of limitations has expired, the defendant will likely file a motion to dismiss the case. The trial court will grant the motion unless you can show that an exception applies. What Exceptions Apply to the Negligence Statute of Limitations in Ohio? The Ohio statute of limitations for personal injury is subject to several exceptions. These exceptions pause or “toll” the statute of limitations for a certain period of time. When this happens, it may extend the time for you to file a lawsuit. Discovery In most accidents, injuries are apparent right away. But sometimes accident victims don’t know that they have suffered an injury until weeks, months, or years after an accident. The discovery rule tolls the statute of limitations until the time an injury is or should have been discovered. Legal Disability A legal disability is something that prevents a person from protecting their own legal rights. Ohio recognizes age and mental illness as legal disabilities. If someone is under the age of 18 or institutionalized, or if a court has found the person to be of “unsound mind,” the statute of limitations will be tolled until the disability is removed. Out-of-State Defendant If a defendant leaves the state or tries to hide, the statute of limitations may be tolled until they return to the state or are found. Prisoner Defendant If a defendant is in prison, the Ohio negligence statute of limitations is tolled until they get out of prison. Coronavirus In response to the coronavirus pandemic, Ohio recently passed a law tolling statutes of limitations for some cases. The rule applies to cases where the statute of limitations is set to expire between March 9 and July 30, 2020. How Can I Get Started on My Case? You can protect your rights by contacting an experienced personal injury attorney as soon as possible after your accident. Your attorney can help you understand how the Ohio statute of limitations for personal injury affects your case. Aaron Bensinger has recovered hundreds of thousands of dollars for injury victims in the Northwest Ohio region. He and his team pride themselves on providing attentive and personalized service for their clients. Contact Bensinger Law today to set up your free initial consultation.

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