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Traffic Collisions May Require an Injury Attorney

Things are looking up overall for California residents in terms of traffic accidents. According to the Statewide Integrated Traffic Records System (SWITRS) for 2010, the lowest number of fatal and injury collisions for more than 70 and nearly 40 years respectively was recorded. The total number of traffic collisions comes in at 416,490 and injury collisions at 161,094. Even then, it means that every minute a collision happens in California, and someone gets injured every 2 minutes.

While not all the injuries are serious, a good many of them should not even have happened in the first place. Speeding was identified as the main cause in more than 30% of the collisions that resulted in injury and fatalities. Alcohol-involved collisions that resulted in fatality and injury dropped from the year before, but it still claimed 972 lives and injured 16,884. These are all preventable accidents. Among the top factors that caused traffic accidents include:

  • Automobile Right-Of-Way
  • Improper Turning
  • Traffic Signals and Signs
  • Unsafe Lane Change

Traffic accidents are something we accept as part and parcel of modern living, and the statistics indicate some significant improvements. But when serious injury or death happens to you or someone close to you, those numbers cease to have any meaning. When it comes down to actual people, even one injury or fatality is one too many.

Compound that with the fact that the driver who caused it was drunk or otherwise negligent, it is just right that you seek a personal injury attorney or wrongful death lawyer practicing in California to address the wrong that was done to you. Some injuries may have serious and long-term consequences not only on the victim, but for the victim’s family, and the costs of these consequences may be too much to handle. Seek to get compensation for your direct costs as well as punitive damages with the assistance of competent legal counsel.

What are the Types of Workers’ Compensation Benefits in Iowa?

When a worker is injured or dies in the workplace in the commission of his or her job, the employer must provide workers’ compensation benefits either through a private insurer or as a self-insurer. There are many benefits mandated by law in Iowa, the applicability of which will depend on the circumstances of the injury or death. These benefits include:

Medical – medical care and transportation that may reasonably be required to treat an injury; also includes a provision for lost wages when an employee is required to go on leave for medical treatment

Disability – this includes Temporary Total Disability (TTD), Temporary Partial Disability (TPD), Healing Period (HP), Permanent Partial Disability (PPD) and Permanent Total Disability (PTD). In general, the weekly compensation for an injured employee cannot exceed 80% of a worker’s spendable earnings (weekly pay net of payroll taxes). The maximum weekly benefit for PPD is $1,378, while the maximum benefit for TTD, HP, PTD and death is $1,498 (effective until June 30, 2013). For TPD, the computation is based on the difference between the weekly earnings at the time of the injury and the subsequent lower paying job. TPD benefit amount is 66 2/3% of that difference.
In Iowa, if a second injury to the eye, hand, arm, foot or leg is sustained after a worker qualifies for PPD benefits for injury to a similar body part, that worker will be entitled to benefits under the Second Injury Fund.

Vocational Rehabilitation – when a worker becomes disabled, he or she may be eligible for participation in training to prepare for, qualify for, and maintain employment provided by the Iowa Division of Vocational Rehabilitation Services, and will be paid $100 a week for up to 13 weeks while rehabilitation is ongoing. This may be extended a further 13 weeks upon approval by the workers’ compensation commissioner.

Death – Benefits are paid to the surviving spouse for life or until remarriage if there are no dependent children, whereupon a two-year lump sum settlement is given. In the absence of a spouse, dependent children get the benefits until they reach the age of 18 or 25, depending on the degree of actual dependence. Burial expenses are also included.
If you believe that you have not received the workers’ compensation benefits that you deserve, contact a lawyer in Iowa who has extensive experience in dealing with workers’ compensation cases. They will know precisely how to get the maximum benefits that should accrue to you.

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