Truck Safety and Your Indiana Truck Accident Lawyer

Trucking safety is no accident.  The federal government is working hard, through the Department of Transportation Federal Motor Safety Carrier Administration.  This function is necessary because semi tractor-trailer accidents, big truck accidents and generally all highway accidents either cause wrongful death, or severe injuries.  These injuries cause hundreds of thousands of lost hours of productivity negatively impacting our economy.  On the individual scale, Hoosier families cannot earn a living, cannot educate their children and cannot purchase the other necessities of life.  As a Trial Lawyer with over 22 years experience, John P. Young has represented thousands of Hoosiers finding themselves the victim of highway accidents with severe injuries.  Mr. Young knows that the rules set in place by the FMSCA are highly effective tools to use to make those who negligently cause Hoosiers injuries in large truck accidents to make up for the harm they cause.  The FMSCA has started a new program designed to make the roads safer for both car and truck traffic.

TACT (Ticketing Aggressive Cars and Trucks) Program

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Welcome to the Ticketing Aggressive Cars and Trucks (TACT) Program Web site—an online resource to help States plan and implement a high-visibility traffic enforcement program. The information and tools provided on this Web site are designed to help States educate motorists about the dangers of unsafe driving behaviors committed by cars around trucks, trucks around trucks, and trucks around other types of motor vehicles. Unsafe driving behaviors may include, but are not limited to: unsafe lane changes, tailgating, failing to signal lane changes, failing to yield the right of way, speeding, and aggressive driving (a combination of two or more behaviors).

This Web site provides information and resources about:

Why is this program important? The program is important because crash data compiled by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration indicates that the truck-involved fatality rate on the nation’s roadways declined 12% in 2008 compared with 2007, with the number of truck-related crash fatalities dropping from 4,822 in 2007 to 4,229 in 2008. Initiatives such as TACT are helping to decrease the fatality rate by making the general driving public more aware of the safe ways to interact with trucks and provide large vehicles with more room and maneuverability. To help reduce crashes and fatalities further, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) is working to educate motorists on how to share the road safely with commercial motor vehicles (CMVs).

If you or a friend or family member has been injured in a truck crash, call your Indiana Truck Accident lawyer, John P. Young for a free, personal and confidential consultation.  There is no fee unless we recover just and fair compensation for your injuries.  Call Mr. Young at 1-888-639-5161 or email Mr. Young at  Thank You.

Your Indiana Brain Injury Attorney Discusses Helmets

John P. Young is your Indiana Brain Injury Attorney.  Mr. Young is a member of the National Brain Injury Association and the Brain Injury Association of Indiana, and has been for more than 15 years.  Mr. Young is a past member of the Board of Directors of the Indiana Brain Injury Association of Indiana, a past Chair of the Board of Directors and now sits on the Emeritus Board of Directors. As part of the mission of the Brain Injury Association, Mr. Young has been discussing the best way to deal with brain injury – PREVENTION.  Prevention is the key to stopping brain injury.  One very effective means of preventing brain injury is through the use of a helmet.  This includes not only while riding a motorcycle, but when riding a bicycle or when snow skiing.

A brain injury can happen in a number of different ways.  Did you know that a stroke is an injury to the brain?  The most common cause of brain injury, however, is trauma or a direct blow to the head.  While a helmet cannot completely prevent brain injury, a helmet is highly effective at either eliminating or reducing the damage caused by a blow to the head. Many of the brain injuries that occur annually in this country can be prevented. Each year 140,000 persons die from brain injuries and 70,000 persons sustain severe brain injuries. The Bike Helmet Safety Institute provides quick answers on how to buy a helmet and other frequently asked questions.

At Young and Young, we encourage every motorcyclist, bicyclist, and skier to wear their helmet.  We also encourage parents to teach their children about helmet safety.  If you or a loved one suffers a brain injury as the result of another person’s negligence, please call John P. Young today for a private, confidential and free consultation.  Call (888) 639-5161 or email Mr. Young at today.  We only charge if there is a recovery for your injuries. Put 22 years of experience helping Hoosier families on your side

Pit Bull Attacks Child in Animal Shelter

Most dog bite incidents generally occur on the street or in someone’s home. But on March 16, a six-year-old Indiana boy was attacked by a pit bull mix, of all things, inside an animal shelter. The injured dog was apparently in an unlocked isolation room right off the lobby in the Hamilton County Humane Society. “Do not enter signs” were posted outside of the room, but the boy went in out of curiosity as children tend to do. The pit bull then attacked the child, biting him on the check, arm, and leg. The boy was rushed to the hospital for treatment. The dog allegedly had no history of violent behavior but was put under quarantine for ten days as a result of the attack, and may wind up being put down. The shelter has subsequently installed deadbolts on the rooms where animals are kept. The boy’s family is, however, considering legal action against the shelter.

Pit bulls have developed a reputation for violent, aggressive behavior. But any dog attack, regardless of breed involved, can obviously inflict serious injuries on the victim, including physical and emotional trauma, especially if the victim is a young child. If you or a loved one have been victimized by a dog attack, contact the experienced personal injury attorneys at Young and Young in Indianapolis for a free consultation.

Conventioneer Killed in Indianapolis By Suspected Drunk Driver

A pedestrian who happened to be attending a horror film convention was tragically killed in Indianapolis on Thursday morning. According to police, the victim, a California filmmaker and actor, was run over after an eastbound car swerved out of the traffic lane and struck him in the 7700 block of East 21st Street about 10:30 a.m. The victim died at the scene.

Police arrested the motorist on preliminary charges of DUI causing death and transported him to Wishard Memorial Hospital for a blood test. The test results are  pending, according to local news media. The victim was in Indianapolis for the HorrorHound Weekend convention at the Indianapolis Marriott East.

It is well documented that alcohol slows reaction times, impairs judgment, and leads to accidents, sometimes with fatal consequences. In addition to facing criminal charges, drunk drivers who injure or kill other motorists or passengers–or in this case, allegedly someone merely walking down the street– can also be sued in civil court for money damages. If you or a loved one have been seriously hurt by a driver under the influence, please contact the personal injury lawyers at Young and Young in Indianapolis to obtain full information about your legal rights. Young and Young will keep tabs on the criminal prosecution of drunk drivers, including convictions or plea deals, which forms crucial evidence to help you recover fair compensation for your injuries in civil court.

Reckless, Impaired Driving Create Highway Accident Headlines

In the news: Prosecutors have charged a Hammond, Indiana man with reckless driving and leaving the scene of an accident involving death in a March 16 accident that claim the life of a construction worker.  Police say the man took off from the scene of the crash after he allegedly hit and killed a worker who was filling potholes in a construction zone on I-80/94 in the Lake County area. He was arrested the next day after calling his girlfriend on a pay phone. The motorist apparently admitted to police that he had been drinking before the early morning accident although no additional charges have been filed as yet.

Separately, a Lanesville, Indiana, woman recently entered a not guilty plea in a host of charges flowing from a wrong-way, multi-vehicle crash on I-65 in Louisville, Kentucky, back in January. According to toxicology reports, the motorist apparently registered four times the legal blood alcohol limit, and has been charged with charged with DUI, criminal mischief, operating on a suspended license, no insurance, assault, wanton endangerment and careless driving.

In highly dangerous, often tragic incidents of this nature, the legal process operates on a parallel track. Prosecutors bring criminal charges against the offender, while the victim or the victim’s family can hire a private attorney to seek money damages from the offender in civil court. A criminal conviction provides powerful evidence of the offender’s civil liability.

If you or a family member have been injured in a car accident owing to the negligence or recklessness of another driver, or by a driver that operated a vehicle while impaired, it is important to retain legal counsel with the experience and skills needed to obtain full compensation for your injuries. At Young and Young, we have represented thousands of Hoosiers with serious auto accident injuries. We have more than 55 years of experience waiting to help.

Your Indiana Brain Injury Lawyer

John P. Young is your Indiana Brain Injury Lawyer.  Mr. Young has been representing Hoosiers dealing with Brain Injury for the last 22 years.  Mr. Young started when a client came to him who had been roofing a building at a surface mining operation.  The client asked the mine operators to turn off the power to the line going over the roof.  The mine operator sent an employee to shut off the power.  The employee told the roofers it would take five minutes to shut off the power and they could begin work in ten minutes.  The crew waited for 30 minutes, just to be sure, besides, they had to unload their supplies and equipment, so the delay was no problem.  Turns out the mine employee met his girl friend on the way to shut off the power, and never did get around to shutting off the power.  My client came into contact with the line and was hit with 7,500 volts in the mouth.  The shock caused him to fall from the roof and land on his head.  His injuries were severe.

Mr. Young immediately joined the National Brain Injury Association and the Indiana Brain Injury Association.  He went to the seminars held by both organizations and met world renowned experts in brain injury trauma.  Mr. Young was so enthralled with this area, he joined the board of directors of the Indiana chapter and eventually served as the Chair of the Board Of Directors of the Indiana Brain Injury Association.  For the client, the case was resolved giving him fair compensation that allowed him to live in a fashion he was used to, with all the skilled medical care necessary to make him comfortable.

Brain injury can come from any source, such a traffic accident, a highway accident, a semi tractor-trailer accident, a drunk driving accident, or a construction accident.  The injury can be severe (coma, death) or less severe (concussion) and all manner of descriptions in between.  I say that a concussion is less severe on purpose.  In the vernacular of the TBI world, a concussion may well be classified as a mild brain injury.  I think this is misleading as it implies the injury is necessarily slight and short term.  Brian injury has as many different impacts as there are people.  So, how do we know if you have had a concussion.

Signs and Symptoms of Concussions

  • Nausea (feeling that you might vomit)
  • Dizziness or balance problems
  • Double or fuzzy vision
  • Sensitivity to light or noise
  • Headache
  • Feeling sluggish or tired
  • Feeling foggy or groggy
  • Confusion
  • Trouble concentrating
  • Trouble remembering

It is never wise to ignore a concussion.  If you are in sports, tell people in charge you think something is wrong.  Continuing to be active, or play, before you see a doctor can be a dangerous thing.  I suggest seeing a health professional right away.  Generally, a neurologist has the proper training to give you the best opinion.  Following your doctor’s orders is key to successful recovery.

Concussions are common, and you will not necessarily lose consciousness.  Having an altered awareness of what is going on around you may occur.  (Sometimes this is referred to as being knocked goofy, or having your bell rung).  Multiple concussions can be dangerous and cause lifelong injury.

If you or a loved one has been involved in an accident, and you believe might have suffered a brain injury, see you doctor, and follow the advice given.  Then, call John P. Young for a free consultation about your rights and fair compensation.

Indiana Personal Injury Lawyers

John P. Young is your personal injury lawyer.  At Young and Young all we do is represent injured Hoosiers.  I would like to share with you one of the most common things I hear from Hoosiers who come to my office, or whom I speak with in their homes or hospital rooms. They are sitting in bed, they may have been in a semi tractor-trailer crash, or a highway crash.  They may have even been in a traffic accident with a drunk driver.  They are in pain with broken bones, maybe an amputation or paralysis, very serious injuries.  They all tell me, “I am not one of those money hungry people trying to get something for nothing” or “I am not ‘sue’ happy”.  They say these things despite the obvious necessity for themselves and their families to seek fair compensation from the negligent person who caused their injuries.

My experience is that most people are honest.  They will not lie to get something they do not deserve.  Of course, there are those out there who will lie, and ruin it for the rest of the honest Hoosiers who need help, but that percentage is very small.  In fact the dishonest persons I encounter, maybe one a year, are so easy to detect that they pose no problem.  We just tell them the evidence does not support their claim and show them the door.  So, why are hard working Hoosiers so likely to apologize for asking for what’s fair?  Let’s start with what your mother taught you, and what you teach your children.  If you make a mess be responsible and make up for the harm you cause.  Is your neighbor being unreasonable for asking you to fix the window you put your baseball through?  No, in fact, we all think the person who does not take responsibility for their actions is a bad person.

People feel they need to apologize because in our society personal responsibility has come to mean don’t ask the person who negligently hurt you to make up for the harm they caused, it has come to mean, shut up and take what you get with a stiff upper lip.  Why would this silliness ever be acceptable?  It is because the insurance companies desire us to think this way.  Why would they want us to think this way?  Because if jury’s consistently were fair with their peers, the insurance companies would have to pay more in fair compensation and that would hurt their executive bonuses.  Don’t feel sorry for them, look around your city, who names are on the biggest buildings?  In Indianapolis, it is the insurance companies.  Last year there were record profits all around the insurance industry, despite Hoosier families struggling to meet the mortgage and feed their children.

Your mother was and is right.  It is everyone’s personal responsibility to fairly make up for the harm they cause.  Hoosiers are not, on the whole, greedy.  They are hard working honest people.  Anyone who says differently either does not live here or is so jaded that their opinions are always angry and destructive.  If you have been injured by another’s negligence, John P. Young is your personal injury lawyer.  He believes your mother is right, and will fight anyone who says differently.

Indiana Governor Signs Drew’s Law Expanding Drunk Driver Sanctions

Following up a previous post, Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels signed into law the bill known as “Drew’s Law.” The measure was among 57 bills that the governor approved on March 12.

The law makes it a Class D felony to cause the death of an unborn child in a drunk driving accident. The bill is named in the memory of  Drew Steinberger, the unborn son of Danielle and Dustin Steinberger,  who was tragically killed on New Year’s Eve 2007 when the car his mother was driving was hit head-on by another driver.

The motorist of the other vehicle in this particular case was apparently believed to be drunk. Owing to a mix-up, however, authorities never took a blood sample, so there was no DUI prosecution.

The bill previously sailed through the Indiana Senate and House with no opposition. State Senator Allen Paul, R-Richmond, originally sponsored the bill at the request of the Steinberger family. A similar law is in effect in 36 other states.

Drew’s Law becomes effective in Indiana on July 1, 2010.

In addition to facing criminal charges, drunk drivers who injure other motorists or passengers can also be sued in civil court for money damages. If you or a loved one have been seriously hurt by a driver under the influence, please contact the personal injury lawyers at Young and Young in Indianapolis. We stand ready to assist. As we mentioned in another blog entry, we keep tabs on criminal prosecutions of drunk drivers,  including convictions or plea deals, which forms crucial evidence to help you recover fair compensation for your injuries in civil court.

High-Tech Billboards–A Roadway Safety Risk?

Some highway safety advocates claim that digital highway billboards constitute “weapons of mass distraction” as potentially dangerous as cell conversations or mobile texting.

According to a recent article published in The New York Times, “These high-tech billboards marry the glow of Times Square with the immediacy of the Internet. Images change every six to eight seconds, so advertisers can flash timely messages — like the latest headlines, coffee deals at dawn, a cheeseburger at lunchtime or even the song playing on a radio station at that moment. The billboard industry asserts there is no research indicating they cause crashes, and notes that the signs do not use video or animation.”

Last year’s Virginia Tech Transportation Institute study on mobile texting focused the nation’s attention on distracted driving. Yet the Times notes that an earlier Virginia Tech study, in 2007, apparently found that digital billboards and ordinary billboards had about the same effect on motorist behavior. The lead researcher in the study now says, however, that further investigation is necessary to reach a more definitive conclusion. In the meantime, lawmakers in Michigan and Minnesota are considering temporary bans on new digital billboards.

If you have been injured by distracted motorist regardless of the cause of the distraction, please call Young and Young in Indianapolis for a free
consultation. We have 55 years of experience to help you and your family obtain full compensation for injuries caused by distracted drivers on
Indiana roads.

More Legal Woes For Toyota

The well-publicized runaway Prius in San Diego on Monday afternoon was more bad news for Toyota. As we discussed in a prior posting, if you drive a Toyota vehicle, please go to either Toyota’s website or the website of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to see if your particular model is the subject of a recall and if it is, what you need to do to protect yourself and your family.

Apart from the wrongful death and personal injury lawsuits that may arise, Toyota must also deal with the potential of a separate, huge legal liability. According to AP, “Toyota owners claiming that massive safety recalls are causing the value of their vehicles to plummet have filed at least 89 class-action lawsuits that could cost the Japanese auto giant $3 billion or more.”

In general, a class-action is a legal process in which a large group of people file their claim collectively in one (or more) cases. Often, class-action complaints are consolidated in a single court jurisdiction for judicial efficiency, and a panel of federal judges is considering such a move for the Toyota cases. AP explains that “After that, a judge will decide whether all claims filed by Toyota owners nationwide can be combined in a single legal action — known as ‘certifying a class’ — and whether the claims have enough merit to move toward either trial or settlement.”

Again, those cases involve disgruntled owners suing for economic damages based on the theory of lost value. The personal injury aspect is a separate matter. If you have been in a collision with your Toyota, and were injured, and the car rapidly accelerated or the braking system failed, give Young and Young in Indianapolis a call. Our firm can help you and your family work through all the issues you are now facing.

Indiana Drunk Driving Accident Lawyer Keeps Eye on Criminal Prosecution

John P. Young is your Indiana drunk driving accident lawyer.  Mr. Young knows that keeping tabs on the criminal prosecution of the drunk driver who caused your injuries is crucial to helping you recover fair compensation for your injuries.  Why is it so important?

We know from experience that drunk driving accidents can be devastating.  Your injuries will probably be worse if it is a motorcycle accident.  Those injuries may include broken bones, spinal cord injuries including paraplegia and quadriplegia, brain injury, scarring and even wrongful death.  With these kinds of injuries, you will build up medical bills fast.  You may not be able to work immediately after the accident and for a long time after.  Therefore handling your claim against the drunk driver right is crucial.  Mr. Young knows working with your investigating police and prosecutor is very important.

It is important for many reasons.  The police should do a thorough investigation of the facts leading up to, during and after the collision.  This includes taking measurements and pictures at the scene, talking to witnesses, taking evidence to test the drunk driver (breath and blood tests).  Our investigation follows the police investigation to collect any evidence which might have been missed.  We work with the police, not against them, to insure all the evidence is collected.  We follow the prosecution of the drunk driver, providing any and all information they may need. We also consult with our client who has been requested to speak with the prosecutor about the prosecution, just to make them feel more comfortable with the process.

If the drunk driver is convicted, or accepts a plea agreement, we obtain the transcripts of the drunk driver’s admissions.  These admission are admissible in civil court (where we bring the claim for fair compensation for your injuries) to prove that the drunk driver was negligent and caused your injuries.  This is a very efficient and effective method of establishing the drunk driver’s obligation to make up for the harm he/she caused you and your family.

If you have been injured by a drunk driver, in a drunk driver accident, call John P. Young for a free consultation.  Mr. Young and his partners will work for you and with you to protect you and your family.

Highways Keep Getting Safer

As your Indiana Truck Accident Lawyer, we keep our eye on the news about highway  safety. A highway accident with a large truck, including a semi tractor-trailer or other large truck, can have devastating effects on Hoosier families.  We know these traffic accidents cause paralysis including paraplegia, quadriplegia, amputation and even wrongful death.   Prevention of Tractor trailer accidents, and all other accidents is the primary goal of the civil justice system.  Keeping vigilant, proving when a truck crash was caused by negligence and requiring the culprit to fairly compensate the injured Hoosiers when negligence occurs is a powerful incentive for trucking companies to comply with over the road safety regulations.  After all it is never acceptable to needlessly endanger Hoosier families.  Hoosier families are needlessly endangered when truck concerns ignore safety rules and regulations.

The Indianapolis Star reported on March 12, 2010 that the number of people dying on our highway system is at its lowest point since the 1950s. The Star obtained these statistics from the United States Transportation Department.  These statistics show that wrongful death on our highways fell nearly nine percent in 2009.  This seems like a small number, but it translates to more than 10,000 fewer deaths in 2009 than compared to 2005.  This is truly significant given that highway traffic and use has increased in that same period.

It is also gratifying to hear that the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is striving further still to bring this number down further.  The NHTSA credits wearing seat belts, programs to discourage drunk driving, and cars with better safety features.  These are all developments which trial lawyers have advocated and championed for decades.

Unfortunately, 680 people died on Hoosier Highways in 2009.  We can do better, but this number represents the lowest number of highway deaths since 1925, when Calvin Coolidge was president, and no one had heard of the great depression or World War II.

If you or your family have been injured or wrongfully killed in a highway accident, call John P. Young, Your Indiana Truck Accident Lawyer, for a no charge consultation.

State Police Ramp Up Roadway Safety Enforcement Operations

A recent posting at South Bend’s indicates that the Indiana State Police will be increasing their enforcement activities in areas around the state that have been deemed dangerous. Its part of a state-wide crash reduction effort that police say has been very effective in reducing traffic fatalities.

In addition to speed limit enforcement, troopers will target violations such as failure  to yield, and running red lights or stop signs at known dangerous intersections.

The last thing any Hoosier wants is jacked up insurance premiums because of traffic tickets. And most motorists probably have experienced that sinking feeling when suddenly coming upon a speed trap.  But it’s important to consider the big picture of traffic safety when you’re out and about on the roads. As ISP Sgt.  Jim Strong says in the posted article, “Every fatal crash we reduce, we’re saving someone’s life.”

On the other hand, if you’ve been injured in a car accident owing to the negligence of another driver, it is important to retain legal counsel with the experience and skills needed to obtain full compensation for your injuries. At Young and Young, we have represented thousands of Hoosiers with serious auto accident injuries. If you or a loved one has been hurt in a car accident, we have more than 55 years of experience waiting to help.

Why Trial Lawyers are Really Our Friends

Toyota has problems.  Those problems kill people.  Do you really trust the government to fix the problem.  Remember the Ford Pinto? It was not the government that forced Ford to fix the problem.  It was the private sector which forced Ford to fix the problem.  It was trial lawyers.  It was trial lawyers representing people who had been injured by the Pinto who developed the evidence to convince the world that the Pinto was a dangerous product and was killing people. Only after this evidence was made public, through a trial, did Ford do something about its dangerous Pinto.

John P. Young, of Young and Young, is your Indiana injury Attorney.  Young and Young has been representing injured Hoosiers, as private lawyers, for more than 56 years.  Mr. Young is proud to be associated with the firm form more than 22 years.  Young and Young represents Hoosiers injured in all different types of accidents.  These include construction accidents, drunk driving crashes, semi tractor-trailer accidents, highway accidents, traffic accidents, large truck accidents, and industrial accidents.  Mr. Young has experience with the medicine involved in most types of injuries, including burns, scarring, broken bones, spinal cord injuries resulting in paralysis including paraplegia and quadriplegia, brain injury and wrongful death.

Americans know that the private sector is much more efficient than government agencies.  Americans do not want bigger government interfering with their lives.  The answer is continued strength of the civil justice system.  This system is the envy of the world, giving the little guy the ability to take on the largest corporations and the government when they have been injured or wronged.  Ask the people of Iraq, Afghanistan and Myanmar (formerly Burma) if they wish they could legally and effectively take on their government.  Their answer would be a resounding “H—Yes”.  They would be astounded that Americans would want to limit such an effective system.

Only the moneyed interests want to see this system changed.  They want to limit the ability of lawyers to represent injured Americans.  Why?  For the same reason no one trusts congress – money!!  The less ability American Citizens have the right to press their rights to fair compensation, the richer the moneyed interests become.  When you hear the civil justice system is hurting our competitive edge, ask yourself who is preaching this message?  If it is the moneyed interests, what they are really saying is we want to be richer and compensating people we injure makes being richer harder, and we don’t like it.  Be critical in your thinking on this issue and resist the moneyed interests attempt to take away your rights.

IU Study: Anti-Drinking Ads Can Backfire

As John Young explained in the blog posting below, alcohol slows reaction times, impairs judgment, and leads to car wrecks with severe injuries. Alcohol abuse is a particularly serious problem among teenage and young adult motorists. But a study from Indiana University suggests that so-called responsible drinking ads produced by public health agencies and marketing firms that target college students can actually have the reverse effect.

According to study co-author Adam Duhachek, an IU marketing professor, “The conventional wisdom from people who design these ads is, ‘If we scare people enough it’s always going to be a good thing.’ We demonstrate circumstances where they [not only] aren’t effective, but they cause a backlash where people actually drink more than if they hadn’t been exposed to the ads.”  Apparently the study findings suggest that the commercials create a defensive mindset that enables viewers to distance themselves from the serious consequences of binge drinking–that it only happens to other people. According to Prof. Duhachek, “If you’re going to communicate a frightening scenario, temper it with the idea that it’s avoidable. It’s best to use the carrot along with the stick.”  The Journal of Marketing Research plans to publish the full study.

A provocative academic study is an interesting conversation starter. It may even lead to important improvements in how media messages about risky behaviors are crafted. However, in the real world right now, drunk drivers of all ages cause all kinds of havoc on Indiana’s roads, including fatal accidents. At Young and Young in Indianapolis, we are a family firm with a legal presence in Indiana for more than 100 consecutive years, and focused solely on injury accidents for the last 55. If you have been injured in a highway accident caused by a drunk driver, we stand ready to help.

Avoid Food Poisoning

We are what we eat.  Unfortunately if we get food that is harmful due to bacteria, toxins, parasites, viruses or chemical contaminants then we feel the effects.  Often the effects can be quite serious as has been seen recently in the outbreaks of E.coli from undercooked ground beef and contaminated leafy green vegetable scare.

Consumers can reduce their risks by taking the following steps:

1. Place raw poultry in plastic bags so meat juices cannot cross contaminate other foods;

2. Do not buy foods past “sell-by” or expiration dates;

3. Cook ground beef and other meats completely and request restaurants to do the same;

4. Wash produce thoroughly;

5. Shop at farmers markets whenever possible; and

6. Drive directly home with groceries or place perishables  in a cooler with ice.

Remember – a little caution can prevent a lot of harm down the road.

How Does the Social Security Administration Evaluate Pain?

So, how does the Social Security Administration evaluate pain when deciding if you are disabled, after all, you can’t see pain.  There is no test for pain.  The Administration will not, as you can imagine, just take the claimant’s word for it that he/she is in pain. So how do they do it?  First they want to know all about your disabilities. John P. Young, your Indiana Social Security Disability Lawyer, recommends that you tell the Administration about each one of the disabling conditions you have, even if you might think it is not that important, when you first apply.  Also give the administration the name address and telephone number of each one of your doctors, and of the hospitals you have visited.  This gives the SSA the chance to obtain all your medical records, and thus know everything about your disability.  It is crucial that you see medical doctors and have your disabilities documented.  The SSA will never find you disabled if you have no documentation to support your claim.  Next make sure you provide the SSA a list of all your medications, what you take them for and the side effects they cause.  This is very important, because if the doctor thinks you have a condition that requires serious medications to treat, that gives your pain complaints believability.

The SSA looks at your medical records to see what disabilities are documented.  They look at your list of medications to see what treatment you are receiving.  They then look to see what kinds of symptoms your disability is likely to cause. They look at your testimony to see if your pain complaints are consistent with the pain complaints they would expect to hear from a patient with those disabilities.  If your pain complaints are not consistent with what is expected, you will lose credibility.  If your pain complaints are more severe than what is expected of a person with your disability, you lose credibility.  If you lose credibility, you are less likely to be granted benefits.  That is why it is very important to be strictly honest with your doctors and the SSA.

John P. Young, Your Indiana Social Security Disability Lawyer, knows from 22 years experience how to properly present you claim to the Administration in order to give you the best chance to win.  John does this with personal service.  John will go to your hearing with you, no assistants will ever be asked to go in his place.  Call John P. Young, your Indiana Social Security Disability Lawyer, today.

Personal Help with Social Security Disability

John P. Young, a partner in the Indianapolis Law firm, Young and Young, is an Indiana Social Security Disability Lawyer.  John has been representing Hoosiers before the Social Security Administration for Twenty-two plus years.  A competent Indiana Social Security Lawyer, practicing in Indianapolis, John knows that personal service is key to successfully prosecuting your disability claim.  It makes no difference to John how you were injured.  Your injury may have been from a traffic accident, a highway accident, an auto crash, a motorcycle accident, you may have been in a drunk driver accident, or a highway accident with  a semi tractor-trailer.  John P. Young sees severe and disabling injuries from big truck accidents quite often.  Further, it makes no difference to John if your disability arises from broken bones, a brain injury or spinal cord injury resulting in paraplegia or quadriplegia, amputation, burns, scarring, blindness or any other type of disability.  If you have a disability, and it is severe enough, John P. Young will personally work to gather the evidence the Social Security Administration needs to approve your disability claim.

You should know that there are two types of Social Security Disability.  The first is Title Two Disability, and the second is Title Sixteen Supplemental Security Income (SSI).  In order to qualify for either, you must have a disability which prevents you from engaging in substantial gainful employment (these are the words the social security administration uses, sorry), and your disability must be expected to last for 12 months or more.  If you meet these criteria, then you must decide if you are eligible for Title Two Disability of title Sixteen SSI.

You become eligible for Title Two disability by working.  You must work for twenty out of the previous forty quarters prior to your disability to qualify for Title Two Disability.  The government takes taxes out of your paycheck in the form of a social security payroll tax.  They call it F.I.C.A.  You can think of this money as the premium for the disability insurance.  When you stop working, because of your disability, you remain insured for Title Two Disability for the next five years.  Like private disability insurance, if you become disabled in this five year period, you are allowed to continue receiving Title Two Disability for as long as you are disabled.  After being disabled for two years, you are also eligible for Medicare.

If you have not worked the required 20 out of the last forty quarters, and are not insured, you may be eligible for SSI.  There are restrictions on SSI such as if you are married and your spouse earns enough money, you are not eligible for SSI.  The Administration also counts the rent you do not have to pay (if you are staying with someone) and things such as food stamps as income, so as to reduce the amount of SSI benefits you will receive.

John P. Young recommends that you apply for both Title Two and Title Sixteen benefits.  The Administration will determine if you are eligible for one or the other, and there is no penalty for applying for both.  John P. Young, your Indiana Social Security Disability Lawyer stands ready to assist you in successfully proving your claim.  You will not have to tolerate an assistant, John handles all his client’s needs personally.  Call today.

Economic Doldrums Have Little Influence on Brain Injury Compensation

An interesting story posted at suggests that there is no let up in money damages awarded for catastrophic personal injuries such as brain trauma despite a precarious economy.

Even a so-called mild head trauma can have far-reaching consequences for the injured person and that person’s family. The article notes that a severe concussion can–among many symptoms–affect the victim’s personality,
judgment, and concentration–which in turn can directly affect his or her ability to continue to earn a normal living.

According to the article, several factors continue to influence large out-of-court settlements or jury awards in favor of those who have suffered brain injuries:

  • – ever higher medical bills, including home care costs
  • – personal injury lawyers with the know-how to demonstrate the extent of brain   
  •   injuries through high-tech evidence and changes in the injured person’s behavior
  •   and moods
  • – jury sympathy for what the injured person is going through

As a lawyer quoted in the article puts it, "All personal injury cases with real objective damages that strike a chord with jurors still have the potential for high damage awards."

If you believe that you (or a family member) have sustained a severe concussion, it is important to hire an experienced personal injury attorney in addition to obtaining expert medical attention. As a result of the potentially devastating nature of a blow to the head, representation by the best possible attorney is crucial for a fair recovery against the responsible party. John P. Young is a former member of the Board of Directors of the Brain Injury Association of Indiana, serving as its chair for two years. Mr. Young has 20 years of experience helping Hoosiers and their families deal with brain injury. Call him at Young & Young in Indianapolis and let him assist you and your family.

Proving Brain Injury

Do you know why a blow to your head can cause brain injury?  Do you know why having your head violently shaken causes injury to your brain?  At Young and Young, as Indiana Spinal Cord Injury Attorneys for more than fifty six years, we know many of the reasons for this injury.  First let’s talk about why Indiana’s Spinal Cord Injury Attorneys are talking about brain injury. The brain and the spinal cord are part and parcel of the central nervous system.  Violent injury, such as those suffered in a construction accident, large truck collision, a traffic accident with a drunk driver can exert strong forces on the spinal column and the brain and cause injury. So, in order to truly understand the impact of an injury, the experienced injury lawyer must understand both structures and how they work together.

Although there are many ways the brain can be injured, a little known cause of injury to the brain is Diffuse Axonal Shearing.  The brain contains billions of nerves called axons. The axons are often depicted as looking much like tree roots.  They interact by carrying electrical impulses throughout the brain.  The pathways of these axons have a great deal to do with how we process information and make us who we are.  The axons can be damaged in a traffic accident in much the same way they can be injured in a shaken baby syndrome case.  Violent forces on the body, such as rapidly moving forward (Acceleration) and rapidly stopping (Deceleration) such in a semi tractor-trailer accident, have a direct effect on the brain.  Generally the brain will not move as fast as the head and will be violently twisted, (torqued) causing the axons to tear.  As a result of this injury, the brain tries to help itself by releasing chemicals.  In some instances, these chemicals can cause additional injury.

The difficult part of detecting this injury, is that currently medical science does not possess a test which cannot directly detect axonal shearing while the injured person is alive. Despite not being able to directly detect the injury, a series of tests known as neuropsychological tests are used to predict axonal injury based on the problems you might have because of the injury, including, inability to handle many tasks at a time (executive function) emotional lability (loss of emotional control) and other problems.

At Young and Young, over our fifty six years of experience as Indiana’s Spinal Cord Injury Attorneys, we have helped thousands of Hoosiers with axonal injury prove the extent of the harm caused by the accident and recover fair compensation. John P. Young is a former Chair of the Board of Directors of the Brain Injury Association of Indiana.  He has the skill and knowledge to help you. Please call for a free consultation today.

NOTICE: No face-to-face meeting needed. You can remain safely in your home from case signup to settlement.