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What Are Some Common Causes of Motorcycle Accidents?

motorcycleWhile they aren’t any more common than an automobile accident, the injuries that are a result of a motorcycle accident can be much more serious. For this reason, it’s beneficial for motorcycle riders to hear and understand some common causes so you can avoid them.

  1. The most common cause of fatal motorcycle accidents is from head-on accidents with cars.
  2. While cars turning left can cause accidents between two cars, because motorcycles are smaller, they are less noticeable to cars. Unless the motorcycle was speeding or in a wrong lane, the car is usually at fault when it comes to left turns.
  3. Like any car accident, a big factor for motorcycle accidents are speeding and the use of alcohol.
  4. When operating a motorcycle, riders should be on the lookout for objects like trees or poles as this causes about 25% of deaths.
  5. Because motorcycles are smaller, it decreases its’ stability and can make road hazards much more dangerous. Hazards like potholes, wet pavement, dead animals, etc. can be extremely dangerous for motorcycle riders.

Knowing of these causes and how you can prevent them is a great way to decrease the amount of motorcycle deaths and injuries we see. If you have been involved in a motorcycle accident and are looking for legal help, contact Attorney Stephen M. Forlizzi today. Fill out our online contact form or call 978-739-4898 for your free consultation.

What Are Personal Injury Protection (PIP) Benefits?

For those that have been involved in a car accident that was caused by someone’s carelessness, you could be eligible for compensation for your lost income, personal injury treatment, pain, suffering and the like. In pursuing compensation, the first thing you’ll need to do is apply for Personal Injury Protection (PIP) benefits.

What is PIP?

If you have a Massachusetts car insurance policy, most will include PIP coverage. Regardless if you were at fault, if you received injuries in a car accident, the policy of the car you were driving will offer PIP benefits. Because it is accessible to anyone injured despite their liability, PIP coverage is sometimes known as “No-Fault” coverage. For those injured in someone else’s car, the benefits of PIP are offered by the insurer of the car you were in as a passenger. If you were struck while riding your bike or walking, PIP benefits would be provided by the insurer of the car that hit you. PIP coverage is mandatory because the state of MA is considered to be a “No-Fault” state.

What Does PIP Cover?

One of the more important aspects of PIP is the covering for any money spent on treatment for injuries sustained in the car accident. This coverage is for medical expenses that were required and reasonable. Before paying PIP benefits, car insurers sometimes will request medical records to make sure that the treatment was necessary.

PIP coverage can also take care of any of the claimant’s lost wages as you recover from the car accident injuries. PIP will pay up to 75% of lost wages if you needed to take time off from work. Confirmation of this requires a doctor’s note and verification by your employer of your weekly income. Claimants are not eligible to receive compensation if they are still receiving a paycheck during this time off from work.

How Much Does PIP Cover?

Medical treatment or loss of income, PIP will cover up to $8,000. For those injured with private health insurance, PIP will cover $2,000. For any medical bills that surpass your PIP coverage, bills must be sent to your health insurer.

If you have been involved in a car accident and are looking to file a claim, contact personal injury Attorney Stephen M. Forlizzi today. Attorney Forlizzi is happy to explain PIP benefits in more detail and explore your options for compensation. For a free consultation, contact Attorney Forlizzi at 978-739-4898 or by filling out the online contact form.

Steps to Take After a Slip and Fall Accident

For those involved in a slip and fall accident on someone else’s property, if there was an unsafe condition that caused this accident, there’s a pretty good chance you’ll need to make a claim. Filing a claim for your injuries can be done through insurance or in court with a personal injury lawsuit. Determining how the claim or lawsuit turns out will depend on the steps that you take after the accident. Below are some steps we recommend taking after any type of slip and fall accident.

Document What Happened

As soon as you received any necessary medical attention, write down the facts and time of the slip and fall accident. This should include:

  • What was the location, date and time of your accident?
  • What were the lighting and weather conditions?
  • What were you doing when you fell?
  • What caused you to fall and what condition was it?
  • Were there any signs warning you?
  • What kind of shoes were you wearing?
  • What kind of injuries did you receive?
  • Provide contact information for the property owner and anyone else that was involved in the accident.

Photograph Anything Associated to the Accident

If you have the chance, take photographs of the location, damaged property, or anything else that is related to the slip and fall accident. We understand that sometimes this isn’t a possibility. If you slipped on a spilled drink at a restaurant, it will most likely be cleaned up before you’re able to get a photograph of it. If an irregular sidewalk is what caused you to fall, this will most likely be around for some time. Regardless of the situation, take photographs of whatever you think will help you in the long run.

Alert the Property Owner

After you receive any medical attention, alert the property owner with a written notice of the slip and fall accident. This notice will serve the following purposes:

  • The owner can’t claim that they had no knowledge of the accident
  • Prompts the owner to take action on correcting the unsafe property
  • Offers evidence to the jurors that your claim was legitimate since you alerted the property owner immediately with a written notice.

Typically, once the notice is delivered, the property owner will alert his or her insurance company about the situation. You will most likely be contacted by them so be aware of what you are telling them.

Speak With a Lawyer

If you were hurt during a slip and fall and received injuries, you should discuss this with an experienced personal injury attorney. Attorney Stephen M. Forlizzi will walk you through the process and ensure your best chance of receiving the compensation you deserve. For a free consultation, fill out our online contact form or call us at 978-739-4898.

What Do I Need to Know Before Renting a Car?

carA major perk of having car insurance is if you’re ever in an accident, you usually are covered for a rental car. While this is a great benefit, there are a few things you should be conscious of before you move forward with renting a car.

  1. When it comes to renting a car, one of the most important choices you need to make is whether or not you should purchase insurance. Whether you’re going on a road trip or to the next town over, it’s always better to be safe than sorry. It may cost extra, but it will be worth it if you are involved in an accident.
  2. Before you sign, take a good look at your rental agreement to see if there are any added charges or protocols. Typically, if you’re under 25 and renting a car, you’ll have to pay some sort of fee. There are some companies that will charge you for items you wouldn’t think of. Things such as gas mileage, renting a GPS or car seats if you have a small child traveling can all cost extra.
  3. If you’re flying into a new destination and are in need of a rental car, look anywhere other than the airport. There’s a chance you’ll be charged extra if you are renting from an airport car rental. There usually is an airport shuttle that can drive you to local rental car companies.

Make sure to carefully observe all driving laws while in another location. If you have been involved in an auto accident with your rental car in Essex County, call Attorney Stephen M. Forlizzi today. You can contact us 978-739-4898 or by filling out our contact form.

Avoiding Cycling Accidents

Cycling to and from a location is a popular form of transportation during the summer months. While it is popular, cyclists and motorist should be on alert of each other. There is a high possibility of the two colliding with each other, causing a serious injury. To reduce your risk of bicycle and car accidents, here are a few tips!

  1. For cyclists, wearing your helmet is one of the most important things you can do to protect yourself. They can help prevent injuries to your head or brain in the event that you are in an accident. Head injuries are the main reason of death for cyclists so wearing a helmet will help reduce this chance. While Massachusetts doesn’t require adult cyclists to wear a helmet, we encourage you to stay safe by wearing one!
  2. While you’re biking on the road, reduce your chance of an accident by following and obeying all bicycle traffic laws. Below, are some of the laws you should follow:
  • Do not ride with a child under four unless they are in an appropriate baby seat
  • Do not ride more than two abreast in one lane
  • Keep at least one hand on your handlebars at all times
  • Make sure any packages you’re carrying don’t hinder operation of the bike
  • Keep brakes maintained so you can stop efficiently
  • If riding at night, use a bicycle light on the front and back of your bike
  1. If making any turns, be sure to use your hand signals. Bikes don’t have normal signaling devices so it can hard for a driver of a car to determine which way you may be going. Make your actions known by using hand signals.
  2. If possible, take a route you know will be less trafficked. Cycling in high trafficked locations puts you at a larger risk of being in an accident.
  3. Regardless if you’re on a bike or in a car, you should always be operating defensively. Be aware of other drivers who may not be driving as safely as you are. Because you are on a bike, even a small accident can cause major damage and injuries for yourself.

If you or someone you know have been involved in a cycling accident, contact the Law Office of Stephen M. Forlizzi to handle your personal injury claims. We will work to ensure you received the results you deserve. For more information or for a free consultation, contact 978-739-4898 or fill out our contact form.

Tips for Safe Driving

The amount of automobile accidents that the state of Massachusetts sees is a severe problem. Most times, these accidents can result in injuries, property damage and can cost, those involved, thousands of dollars. For Massachusetts drivers, we have some safety tips to avoid automobile accidents.

  1. Ensure that your car is up to date on any scheduled car maintenance it may need. This includes checking your tires for wear, oil changes, replacing windshield wiper blades and any other maintenance your car might need. If you’re unsure if your car is in need of any maintenance, take it to an auto shop and have a professional take a look.
  2. Make sure that your car is prepared to handle certain weather related situations. If it is raining hard, are your windshield wiper blades in working condition to keep the windshield clear? In the show, does your car have snow tires or four-wheel drive? If you live in an area where the temperatures can reach over 100 degrees, will your car overheat from lack of coolant?
  3. Driving with any distractions is a good way to increase your chances of being involved in a car accident. A lot of drivers believe that things like talking on the phone or eating are harmless as they are operating their car. Anything that includes taking your eyes, mind or hands off of the road is considered a distraction. Below are some behaviors you should avoid while driving:
  • Using a mobile device
  • Talking on the phone
  • Eating or drinking
  • Reading
  • Looking out the window for a long period of time
  • Tending to pets or children
  • Self-grooming
  1. To avoid car accidents, be a defensive driver. If the driver in front of you is driving too slowly, do not tailgate them. Instead, move to the lane next to you and pass them. If you find that you are being tailgated, don’t be adamant about keeping your spot. Being a defensive driver also means keeping an eye on what other drivers are doing.
  2. One of the most dangerous ways you can drive is if you are under the influence of alcohol or drugs. This can affect your capability of recognizing any hazards and responding to them. If you are impaired by alcohol or drugs, call someone to drive you rather than putting yourself and others in danger.

If you have been involved in a car accident, contact the Law Office of Stephen M. Forlizzi today. Attorney Forlizzi has years of experience representing car accident victims. Contact us today at 978-739-4898 or by filling out our contact form for a free consultation.


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