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Personal Injury Lawyer in Sacramento

Personal Injury Lawyer in Sacramento Provides Information on Stairway-Related Accidents

There are many different types of accidents that can occur on premises such as stairways. Falling on a stairwell can result in severe damage or even death to the individuals involved. The state of California has several regulations to ensure the safety of its citizens while using public stairs. An experienced personal injury lawyer in Sacramento has the knowledge to the legal requirements of stairways but the following is a partial list of the regulations stairs must meet in California:

1. Stairs serving an occupant load of more than 50 must have a width of at least 44 inches

  • Stairs serving an occupant load of less than 50 must have a width of at least 36 inches b. Private stairways serving an occupant load of fewer than 10 must have a width of at least 30 inches

2. Trim and handrails must not reduce the width more than 3 ½ inches less than the minimums listed above

  • The sides of the staircase may not reduce the width more than 1 ½ inches less than the minimums outlined.

3. Each step in a stairway must be between 4 and 7 ½ inches tall.

  • The height of the tallest step must not exceed the height of the shortest step by more than ⅜ inch.

4. Each step must have a depth of at least 10 inches.

  • The depth of the deepest step must not exceed the depth of the smallest step by more than ⅜ inch.

5. Private stairs serving less than 10 individuals and stairs leading to unoccupied rooftops may have stairs with a maximum height of 8 inches and a minimum depth of 9 inches.

6. All stairs must be slip resistant.

7. All stairs must be clear of all obstacles and be in good repair.

8. Circular stairways must have a minimum stair depth of 10 inches

  • The central radius must not be less than twice the width of the stairway

9. Landings

  • Length must be at least equal to the width of the stairs and must not exceed 4 feet when the direction of the staircase does not change.
  • When landings are used to turn the direction of the staircase, the width must not be reduced to less than half the required width.
  • Doors that open into a landing may not reduce the width in any direction by more than 7 inches less than the minimum as outlined in section 1.
  • There must not be more than 12 vertical feet between landings.

10. Every building with 4 or more stories must have an exit to the roof from one set of stairs

  • This is not required for buildings with a roof slanting greater than 4 in 12 units (e.g. raises more than 4 feet every 12 feet)

11. Stairways must have at least 6 feet 6 inches of headroom from the step to the ceiling

  • If there is not 6’6” of room above the stairs, the stairs must be relocated or the obstruction must be removed. If neither of these can be accomplished, there must be adequate warning of the obstruction posted. Padding must be provided when appropriate.

12. Some exit stairways are meant for emergencies and must be protected from the rest of the structure

  • The stairway must be constructed of at least two-hour fire resistant materials in buildings with 4 or more stories
  • The stairway must be constructed of at least one-hour fire resistant materials in buildings with fewer than 4 stories c. Doors must have some method of self-closure

13. Stairways must have handrails on either side. Stairs with a width of more than 88 inches must have intermediate handrails for each 88 inches in width that are placed approximately midway.

  • Stairways with a width of less than 44 inches may have only one side rail. Any side that is open must have a railing.
  • Stairways with less than 4 stairs do not need to have handrails.

 

There are many other regulations regarding the specific construction of stairs and handrails that may be viewed at state websites. It’s always best to speak with a knowledgeable personal injury lawyer in Sacramento if you or someone you know has been injured due to stairways.

Do I have a Case?

Accidents occur on the stairs all the time – how do you know you have a case against the owner of the property? Property owners have a liability for staircase accidents that’s very similar to normal slip-and-fall cases. To prove fault, the following must be established:

1. The owner or an employee of the owner caused the dangerous stairway condition

  • Liquid on the stairs, worn tread causing a slippery surface, a tear in the stair covering that may cause someone to trip, etc.

2. The owner or employee of the owner was aware or should reasonably have been aware of the dangerous condition within responsible maintenance and observation of the stairs.

3. The owner neglected to remedy the dangerous condition of the stairs.

4. The injury incurred by the plaintiff was a direct result of the dangerous condition.

 

The court will take into consideration whether the plaintiff was acting recklessly or had a reasonable purpose for being on the stairs. It is important to take careful observation of the stairs when you experience an accident. Worn carpet or wood may not look especially dangerous, making it all the more so as individuals won’t think to take special care. Have you experienced a fall on a stairway? The injuries that can be sustained from these falls are limitless. It’s important to contact a legal representative who is knowledgeable and dedicated to your case so you get the compensation you need and deserve.

Speak with a Personal Injury Lawyer in Sacramento

If owners are acting carelessly or negligently and results in your injury, you must speak with a knowledgeable personal injury lawyer who can evaluate your case and fight for the compensation you deserve. Give us a call now for a free consultation at (916) 357-6767.

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Injury Attorney in Sacramento
It is a nightmare situation that happens all too often; a child incurs an injury while under the care of a trusted childcare facility. Daycare staff must go through rigorous background checks and first aid training. Even a small mistake can have dire consequences- just a few years ago a young child died after ingesting a pushpin at a daycare facility. The child was permitted to use the restroom without supervision and discovered and swallowed a pushpin in this time. These types of cases are horrific and devastating, especially when it’s entirely preventable. If you or someone you know lost a child due to the negligence of a daycare facility, contact an injury attorney in Sacramento immediately.

Hazards

  • Improper storage of cleaning materials and medications
  • Improper storage of sharp objects such as scissors and knives
  • Stairwells or entryways to dangerous areas such as high-traffic hallways
  • Poorly maintained daycare vehicles
  • Poorly maintained or manufactured furniture
  • Poorly maintained, manufactured, or organized storage facilities, for example with heavy materials stored on high shelves, increasing the risk of collapse or falls.
  • Improper use of cribs
  • Use of any recalled products
  • Insufficient supervision in a wide range of circumstances

Possible Injuries

  • Falling
  • Being struck by falling objects
  • Ingesting a dangerous item
  • Choking
  • Pet bites
  • Bites or injury from other children
  • Poisoning
  • Chemical burns
  • Injury during transportation in daycare vehicles
  • Physical abuse from staff
  • Emotional abuse from staff

No parent should ever have to go through losing a child. The emotional agony in addition to financial burdens can be overwhelming. Contact an injury attorney in Sacramento who can fight your legal claim.

Applicable Laws & Regulations

  • There must be a ratio of 1:4 staff to children when children are 6 weeks to 18 months
  • There must be no more than 12 children receiving care at a facility at one time when children are 6 weeks to 18 months
  • There must be a ratio of 1:6 staff to children when children are 18 months to 3 years
  • There must be a ratio of 1:12 staff to children when children are 3 to 4 years
  • There must be a ratio of 1:14 staff to children when children are 5 years and older
  • There must be emergency numbers posted by every phone in the daycare facility
  • There must be a stocked and easily reachable first aid kit at the facility
  • Hazardous chemicals and poisonous materials should not be accessible to children
  • Staff must be certified in pediatric first aid

There are many other relevant laws, including those regarding licensure and background checks of employees. Every case is different and an experienced injury attorney in Sacramento can help you with yours.

Though many daycare facilities require parents to sign forms promising not to sue should their child be injured while in the center, these usually do not hold up in court if the injuries are severe.

How to Build a Case

  1. Prove the daycare facility had a duty of care to protect the child from harm
  2. Prove the daycare facility violated this duty of care
  3. Prove that this breach of duty of care resulted in an injury to the child
  4. Prove the foreseeability of the injury
  5. Prove the extent and expense of the injury of the child

What to Do After an Incident

While it may be the last thing a parent wants to think about, especially in the tragic case of a child’s death, it’s important to act within a reasonable amount of time to hold the daycare responsible for their negligence. This gives you the financial means to recover from the cost of care for your child and possibly prevents future incidents.

Daycare centers are required to do do everything possible within reasonable means to protect a child from injury. Neglecting this responsibility could be considered as negligence in a court of law. The cost sustained from injury may include actual medical costs, loss of income due to missed work, as well as compensation for pain and suffering.

Speak with an Injury Attorney in Sacramento About Daycare Negligence

If you have a child that has suffered physically or mentally while under the care of staff at a daycare facility, it is important to contact a knowledgeable law firm who can help you get the compensation you deserve. Call (916) 357-6789 for a free consultation with an injury attorney in Sacramento.

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Personal Injury Lawyer Sacramento

PERSONAL INJURY LAWYER DISCUSSES PREMISES LIABILITY INSURANCE

We all know that we need to have certain types of insurance, and our agents tell us that we should have other types, but how do we know what insurance we really need? Lucky for you, we understand your situation and have taken the time to provide you information on important lines of insurance that everyone should carry.

Premises liability insurance is generally included in a homeowners insurance policy, or a commercial General Liability policy package, and covers owners for liabilities related to their ownership of real property. It is important to note that premises liability falls under a general liability policy, and policy holders will only be covered for damages related to bodily injury and property damage (“BI / PD”) and personal injury (PI). Contact a personal injury lawyer for any specific questions you have.

Common Premises Liability Claims

  • Dog Bites and Other Animal Related Injuries – Pet owners are liable for the injuries that their animals cause to others regardless of where that injury takes place, but if that incident takes place at your home, your premises liability coverage on your homeowners policy is designed to provide coverage. As long as your policy does not contain a dog bite exclusion, you will be able to make a valid insurance claim – it should be noted however, that some policies will have a special exclusion that excludes certain breeds, such as a Pit Bull, Rottweiler, or German Shepherd. It is always important to pay attention to the exclusions on your policy.
  • Slip and Fall Injuries – There are different codes and regulations set for the maintenance and construction of buildings and property, and these rules are made to protect the people who need to use that property. When a property has fallen into disrepair, or a known danger is ignored and not corrected, the property owner will be held liable if someone is hurt as a result. Your general liability insurance policy should cover this – these are the most common premises liability claims
  • Discrimination Damages – In the same way there are codes and regulations to ensure the safety of a property, there are rules in place to make sure that buildings and businesses catering to the general public are inclusive to all patrons. This means that individuals with disabilities must have adequate accommodations allowing them to use the facility. This is why businesses and government buildings all have wheelchair ramps and disabled bathrooms and parking made available. Individuals who ignore the codes and regulations open themselves up to possible Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”) lawsuits. A general liability policy (which will include premises liability) could provide coverage in this scenario, as long as the damages being sued for are BI/PD or PI, which is not always the case. If the plaintiff is an employee, your general liability policy will not cover those damages.

If you have been injured on someone else’s property as a result of poor maintenance, design, or general irresponsibility, please call a personal injury lawyer for a free consultation today! We are experts in the field and are here to help you through this challenging time.

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Injury Accident Attorney Sacramento

INJURY ACCIDENT ATTORNEY EXPLAINS CONSTRUCTION SITE ACCIDENTS

Due to the heavy machinery and other hazards, construction sites can be extremely dangerous if workers, employers and pedestrians are not careful. If you have been injured in a construction accident, it is imperative you speak with a skilled personal injury accident attorney who can evaluate your case and view your options. Below are some of the frequently asked questions regarding construction accidents.

What should I do if I were in a construction accident?

The first thing you should always do with every accident is seek medical attention if your injuries are serious. Then you should report the accident and speak with either your supervisor or employer. Workers compensation typically requires a visit to the hospital which is helpful evidence in your workers compensation case.

Who can I sue if I was injured at a construction site?

You should be able to sue any person who is at fault for your injuries other than your employer. Your remedies against your employer are limited to workers’ compensation. But your remedies against a general contractor or owner may be limited to cases where you can prove active negligence on behalf of these parties.

Can I file a lawsuit against 3rd parties even while collecting workers’ compensation?

Absolutely. If you can establish that somebody other than your employer acted negligently and caused or contributed to your injuries, you can still bring a lawsuit upon them. However, workers’ compensation carrier may be entitled to get some or all of their money back out of your recovery against the other responsible parties.

What are some causes of construction accidents?

Some of the more common causes of construction accidents are:

  • being run-over by a tractor, cement truck or other large construction vehicle
  • crane accidents
  • electrical accidents
  • equipment accidents
  • explosions and fires
  • falls
  • lack of safety equipment and/or failure to comply with Occupational Safety & Hazard Administration (OSHA)
  • scaffolding accidents
  • trench collapses
  • welding accidents

What are the most common construction site injuries?

Because there is a variety of different types of accidents that can occur at a construction site, the injuries can vary as well:

  • burns
  • traumatic brain injuries
  • spinal cord injuries
  • cuts and lacerations
  • broken bones
  • loss of limbs

What if my employer is at fault for causing my injuries?

If your employer is at 100% fault, you are unfortunately out of luck. Your remedies are limited to workers’ compensation. If your employer is not 100% at fault you can sue any third parties that were involved. If your employer’s negligence was a major cause of your injury, you may be able to collect against the other responsible parties and not have to pay back the money awarded to you.

What if I was the one responsible for the accident?

If your own negligence was the only cause of your injuries, then you will not receive any money in a legal case. However, California is a comparative negligence state and a plaintiff can still recover money for their damages if there is at least one other party at fault. However, the amount of money is reduced by the amount of your own negligence.

What kind of compensation will I be awarded?

No accident is ever the same so it depends on the nature of the accident, your injuries and who was at fault. It’s a very tricky thing to determine how much money you might receive for compensation so consulting with an attorney who is skilled at such calculations would be a good choice.

What if I was injured while visiting or walking by a construction site?

If you were on or near a construction site but not working, you can sue any party who is responsible for your injuries including the owner, general contractor and subcontractors. This duty is owed to you even if you are an uninvited guest at the site. Anybody who has control of the site owes you a duty of care.

What if my employer doesn’t carry worker’s compensation insurance?

If you suffered a serious injury and your employer doesn’t have workers compensation insurance, you are actually in a much better position. Under the law, if an employer does not carry worker’s compensation insurance, you are allowed to sue the employer in a civil case, just like you can sue any other defendant plus liability which is easier to prove. You will be entitled to full compensation for your injuries rather than the worker’s compensation recovery.

What if I was working as a subcontractor?

This gets tricky. The owner or the general contractor may be found liable to workers at the site for failing to use ordinary care to provide them with a reasonably safe place to work, warn of dangers and keep the site in a reasonably safe condition.

How long do I have to file?

Whether you file for a worker’s compensation or a personal injury claim, you shouldn’t wait to speak with a lawyer and file a claim. Your employer must file a worker’s compensation report within days of your accident. Following that, the sooner you are able to apply for benefits the better, as the process can be long. Personal injury claims have a deadline of 2 years so do not wait to speak with an injury accident attorney.

Do I need an attorney?

If you’ve been injured while being on a construction site, an experienced injury accident attorney is best to help you navigate through the complicated legal process in obtaining any compensation you deserve. Don’t wait to speak with an injury accident attorney if you’ve been injured.

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