General District Court or Circuit Court - Which is Better for Your Personal Injury Case in Virginia

Author: Charles L. Allen, Richmond Personal Injury Lawyer

In Virginia, a  person cannot force an insurance company pay a settlement for their personal injury claim. Instead, the only right an injured person has is a trial to seek a judgment on their behalf against the party that caused the injury.[1] Two different state courts typically decide my clients cases; either General District Court or Circuit Court.  Let me describe some of the differences between these two courts.   General District Court's jurisdiction is limited to an amount that does not exceed $25,000.  In other words, the Court can award any amount from nothing at all up to $25,000. [2] Also, the amount of the award is decided by a judge,…

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The Harmful Effects of Fracking On Drinking Water

Author: Scott D. Fitzgerald, Richmond Personal Injury Lawyer 

In an attempt to extract deposits of natural gas located thousands of feet beneath the earth's surface, oil and gas companies are turning to a controversial process called hydraulic fracturing, or "fracking."   Oil and gas companies begin by drilling wells up to 8,000 feet deep.  Millions of gallons of water laced with hundreds of (sometimes unknown) chemicals are injected into these wells under high pressure, which fractures the shale to permit otherwise trapped natural gas to flow to the surface where it can be collected.[1]  Each "frack" contains up to eight million gallons of water laced with harmful chemicals, and a single well can be fracked…

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Meet the Attorneys of Allen & Allen: Jason W. Konvicka - VIDEO

Jason Konvicka is a partner and trial attorney in the Richmond, Virginia office of Allen, Allen, Allen & Allen. He is a founding member of the firm's medical malpractice team but his practice also includes serious and complex injury case involving brain injury, truck accidents, bus accidents and wrongful death. He is also experienced in handling defective product cases and defective drug cases. Jason is listed in Best Lawyers in America and Virginia Super Lawyers. He is a Certified Civil Trial Advocate and he has successfully argued before the Virginia Supreme Court and the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals. To learn more about Jason, visit: http://www.allenandallen.com/jason-w-konvicka.html

Video: http://youtu.be/lYbtpGV45Oo…

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Meet the Attorneys of Allen & Allen: Courtney Allen Van Winkle - VIDEO

Courtney, a partner with the firm, concentrates her practice on personal injury, brain injury cases and wrongful death claims. She works in the firm's Richmond, VA office and Glen Allen, VA offices and serves clients across the state of Virginia. Courtney is a trial lawyer and a strong advocate for injured people. She has successfully resolved many cases involving children. As the mother of four children herself, Courtney is able to draw upon her own experiences to compassionately work with children. To learn more about Courtney, visit: http://www.allenandallen.com/courtney-allen-van-winkle.html

Video: http://youtu.be/tMsX37b0xeQ

Video Transcript: My name is Courtney Van Winkle. I am a trial attorney with the…

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Meet Virginia Personal Injury Attorney Scott D. Fitzgerald - VIDEO

Scott is the great grandson of the Allen Law Firm's founder, George E. Allen, Sr., and is the fourth generation of the Allen family to join the law firm. He is a Richmond, VA personal injury attorney focusing his practice on motorcycle crash cases, truck accident cases and car accident cases in Richmond, VA area. Scott is dedicated to protecting the best interests of his clients and defending their rights against insurance companies. To learn more about Scott, visit: http://www.allenandallen.com/scott-d-fitzgerald.html

Video: http://youtu.be/BHuiyfoGmnU

Video Transcript: My name is Scott Fitzgerald. I am a trial attorney here, at Allen & Allen. When clients come to us, it is one of the most stressful and confusing…

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Moped and Scooter Safety Tips

Author: Scott D. Fitzgerald, Richmond Personal Injury Lawyer

With gas prices remaining high, consumers are trading in  their automobiles in favor of gas-sipping scooters and mopeds, particularly in urban areas.  Scooter sales were up 17% in 2011, and moped sales have experienced a similar rise.[1] The number one reason first-time buyers cited for their purchase: to save money.  Mopeds and scooters average between 40 and 100 miles per gallon, which can save consumers hundreds of dollars a year in gas alone.

However, there is one major drawback: safety.  The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that moped and scooter fatalities increased 50% from 2005 to 2009.[2] Scooters…

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Resolving Your Personal Injury Case: Using Arbitration Instead of Trial

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Some personal injury cases may be resolved through means other than a lengthy, costly trial. Arbitration is one type of such alternative dispute resolutions.

Arbitration is a means of resolving a dispute using an impartial person (an "arbitrator") who otherwise has no interest or involvement in the case. In a personal injury case, the arbitrator also decides the amount of the award, meaning how much the insurance company must pay the injured person.

Arbitration is not appropriate for every case. The decision whether to arbitrate or not is a complicated one that should be made by you and your attorney.[1] Even the process of agreeing to arbitrate requires a number of steps and a number of decisions.

Considerations…

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Should I Call My Insurance Company After an Accident?

Scott D. Fitzgerald, Richmond, VA Personal Injury Attorney

Author: Scott D. Fitzgerald, Richmond Personal Injury Lawyer

Yes.  Regardless of who is at fault, it is important to call your insurance company and report any accident that involved injuries or property damage.

A common myth is that you do not need to contact your insurance company if you were not at fault.  This is false, because there are several coverages on your insurance policy that you may want or need to use. In order to use any of these, you are required to notify your insurance company of a collision. 

Collision Insurance Coverage 

The first type of coverage you may want to use is our collision coverage.[1] If the at-fault driver's insurance company is slow to accept…

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Products Liability Law Suits Making Consumers Safer - The AAJ Reports

The American Association for Justice Report: They Knew and Failed To...

Introduction by Attorney P. Christopher Guedri

As a trial lawyer who has handled a number of complex products liability cases over my career, I view one of the rolls of the American civil justice system to protect consumer rights against corporations who knowingly endanger and fail to protect their customers. A recent report out from the American Association for Justice (AAJ), outlines scenarios where corporation responsible for product failures which endangered the lives of consumers, some even resulting in deaths, not only had knowledge of the products' dangers, but also failed to do anything about it. Because…

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Automobile Safety: Shoveling Snow - Sidewalks & Parking Spaces

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The Winter of 2010 in Virginia has seen more big snow storms than we've had in many years. (Too many big snow storms for some of us). Our arms and backs are sore from all the shoveling. Some folks live in urban areas where they park on the street, and sure enough, the snowplows added insult to injury by pushing a large mound of snow onto the side of your car. Out comes the snow shovel, and several hours of hard work later you've removed the snow barrier, the parking space is cleared of snow, and you can drive your car out.

However, once you have cleared the parking space and left for work or an errand, can some freeloader take advantage of your hours of work and park in the snow-free space that you've spent several hours…

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