Were You Injured After Being Over-Served Alcohol?

When it comes to honoring special occasions, it is important to celebrate responsibly, whether hosting a party or going to one. So, if you were injured in an accident after being over-served alcohol as a guest of someone else, or at a bar or restaurant, you may be entitled to certain compensation to cover your medical bills, lost wages, and related damages.

Continue reading to learn how a host of a party can be held legally liable for the actions of their drunken guests, as well as, where to learn more about your potential personal injury case.

Personal Injury Law Firm Indianapolis Indiana 317-636-7497
Civil Litigators Indianapolis Indiana 317-636-7497

Social Hosting and Liability

Informally known as “social host liability”, those who host parties might be held responsible for the actions of their drunken guests under law. Whether a guest got in a car accident, suffered alcohol poisoning, or was a minor, all after being served too much, the provider of the alcohol could face legal repercussions, both civilly and criminally, depending on the state and the circumstances of the case.

You see, these social host liability laws differ from state to state. There are some states do not have any laws regarding social host liability at all, so in the case of an accident, the host of the party would not be held liable for any damages that occurred as a result of their guest’s intoxication. Some states do have laws, but the laws do not hold hosts liable. Others have laws that specify detailed circumstances in which a host would be liable.   

States like California and New York, for instance, have laws the protect social hosts from any liability, stating that the legal cause of damages is alcohol consuming, not providing. Then there are states like New Jersey that give victims of drunk driving accidents legal recourse to recover damages from a social host under certain circumstances, such as the host gave a visibly intoxicated guest more alcohol that created an “unreasonable risk of foreseeable harm”.

For states like North Carolina, no laws exist regarding social host liability, therefore, hosts cannot be sued for damages incurred by guests that became inebriated at their party. However, negligence laws do still apply, which means victims could still have another legal recourse to collect compensation for their damages. In this case, the victim would have to prove negligence by showing that the host failed to act reasonably, as the average person would, by giving the guest alcohol, and that providing the alcohol was the direct cause “of the victim’s damages.

Dram Shop Laws

When an establishment is negligent in over-serving their guests or patron’s alcohol, they can be held legally responsible under Dram Shop Laws. Most states have Dram Shop laws, which are intended to give victims an opportunity to sue for damages.

Indiana and Social Host Liability

Here in Indiana, social host laws are outlined in Indiana Code 7.1-5-7-8. These laws do not directly pertain to adult guests. Instead, Indiana social host liability laws govern serving alcohol to minors. Not only is it a crime under state and federal law, but the hosts can also face a civil lawsuit brought on by the guardians of the minor.

For adults who are over-served at a party, there are still laws that protect victims, such as negligence laws, dram shop laws, and premise liability laws. According to Indianapolis Defense Lawyer Jack Crawford, “Some folks think, ‘hey, you came to my party. I wasn’t charging you drinks, you were helping yourself out in the kitchen I don’t know what kind of condition you are, so I don’t have any legal responsibility.’ That’s not true. (….) If that person leaves your party in a visibly intoxicated state, stumbling and slurring their speech and you know they’re the driver, if they get involved in a traffic accident and injure someone or cause property damage, or even worse cause someone’s death, then the family of the victim can come against your homeowner’s insurance policy,”

Would you like to learn more about your Indianapolis personal injury case? Contact Carl Brizzi LAW at 317-636-7497 to schedule a free consultation with our licensed Indianapolis Indiana accident injury attorneys who can determine the best strategies for your pedestrian accident claim.

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Carl Brizzi Law Indianapolis Indiana
Carl Brizzi Law Indianapolis Indiana 317-636-7497

What is Regulatory Compliance and How Can it Help My Injury Claim?

Regulatory compliance is an organizations adherence to a strict set of laws, rules, guidelines, and specifications that are related to the organizations business. If they fail to meet these terms, they face a wide spectrum of penalties, most often, hefty federal fines and civil lawsuits. Continue reading to learn more about regulatory compliance laws, and what to do if you were involved in an accident that occurred as a result of a business failing to meet such standards.

Indianapolis Indiana Compliance Lawyers
Indianapolis Indiana Compliance Lawyers 317-636-7497

Common Regulatory Compliance Laws in the U.S.

Since the need for regulatory compliance continues to grow, new positions have been created just to oversee this area of business. For instance, many corporations are now appointing Chief and Regulatory Compliance Officers within their organization to ensure all legalities and guidelines are being met. The most common regulatory compliance laws in the United States include the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), Sarbanes-Oxley Act (SOX), Federal Information Security Management Act (FISMA), Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS), and Dodd-Frank Act).

Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA)

Enacted in 1996, the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) represents the regulatory compliances for data security and privacy of medical records. With so many cyberattacks, hacking, and identity theft taking place after the internet boom, this is a highly necessary legislation to have for our medical industries, both private and public.

Sarbanes-Oxley Act (SOX)

This act was passed by the United States Congress in 2002 and is currently managed by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). It was created for the purpose of protecting both shareholders and the general public from accounting errors and money fraud within organizations that heavily use computers. It enhances the accurateness of corporate disclosures too.

Federal Information Security Management Act (FISMA)

This act was signed into law as a portion of the Electronic Government Act of 2002. It outlines the comprehensive structure to protect all governmental information, operations, and assets. Whether the threat is man-made or natural, this legislation has an agenda in place to ensure all government information is protected.

Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS)

The PCI DSS legislation was enacted in 2004 by the top 4 credit card companies, MasterCard, Discover, Visa, and American Express. It is a set of guidelines and procedures that are meant to augment credit card security. This includes both credit and cash transactions. Also, with the threat of identity theft and other kinds of theft, this act plays a major role in protecting us against crime.

Dodd-Frank Act

Also known as the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, this legislation is important because it is a federal law that regulates the financial industry in the hands of the government. It was enacted in 2010 to create financial supervisory procedures in order to limit risk by enforcing transparency and liability.

Are you looking for a skilled civil litigator to represent your Indiana accident claim? Contact Carl Brizzi LAW at 317-636-7497 to speak with a seasoned accident lawyer about your personal injuries in Indianapolis, Indiana. We offer free consultations and never collect attorney fees unless we obtain a settlement or verdict for you.

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Carl Brizzi Law Indianapolis Indiana
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Back Pain and Car Accidents

Car Accident Lawyers Indianapolis Indiana
Car Accident Lawyers Indianapolis Indiana 317-636-7497

Car accidents can happen in an instant, and the resulting injuries resulting can be catastrophic. If your back hurts after a car accident, you may be entitled to compensation.  Spinal injuries can impact your mental, emotional, physical, social, and financial well-being. The spine is a crucial component to our daily functioning life and sustaining injuries can result in permanent damage.

Here at Carl Brizzi Law, we work with many car accident victims who experience pain and injury days or even weeks after a car accident.

I can’t count the number of times relatives or friends are involved in car accidents, but refuse on-scene medical care. Car accidents vary, and often don’t result in serious injury. However, many times fortunate drivers walk away from a car collision, only to later experience pain and injury. Delayed pain after a motor vehicle crash is common and can be serious. It can also affect your right to injury compensation.

Every year, approximately 1.2 million accounts of whiplash happen each year in the United States. Hospitals in the US treat 869,000 cases of cervical spine injures annually. The question remains, why are there so many cases of back injuries?

Back pain from a car accident is caused by the amount of force placed upon the spine following a collision. Since a driver’s seat has limited space, the force is confined to a smaller area, abruptly stopping the momentum. The power of the force puts pressure on the back and neck.

Back pain after a car accident can be instantaneous, but delayed back pain after injury can also occur. Pain can last anywhere from a single week to a lifetime. Back injury can be an ambiguous term, ranging from pinched nerves to paralysis. Back pain after a high-energy injury such as a car accident can take many forms, having severe impacts along the spine.

If you’ve been involved in a car accident, we recommend first seeking medical attention, and then calling the attorneys at Carl Brizzi LAW for a free consultation. For a comprehensive case review and evaluation of your Indianapolis Indiana car accident personal injury claim, contact us today.

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Carl Brizzi Law Indianapolis Indiana
Carl Brizzi Law Indianapolis Indiana 317-636-7497

Can I Sue For Invasion of Privacy?

Your privacy is an inherent right that does not have to be earned or granted. For this reason, it is not okay for a person’s personal information to be revealed to the public in an offensive or embarrassing way. Because of the ongoing growth of online technology, social media platforms, and media, it is easier than it has ever been before to infringe on a person’s privacy. Aside from the internet and media, conduct can also invade a person’s right to privacy. It is important to understand invasion of privacy laws, including how to affirm your rights if you or a loved one ever becomes a victim to such violation. This especially important since these laws vary greatly from state to state.

Continue reading to learn a brief explanation of the four most common types of invasion of privacy claims, and what you can do if you believe your rights have been violated.

Civil Litigators Indianapolis Indiana
Civil Litigators Indianapolis Indiana 317-636-7497

Four Types of Invasion of Privacy Claims

False Light

A person has the right to not have their personal information revealed to the public in a deceptive or misleading way that portrays them in a “false light.” A false light cause of action is different from defamation because the information is true. For example, a neighborhood newsletter prints an article highlighting an admired local business owner, but places it right next to a large picture of a fugitive child abductor in a way that makes the business owner look like the profiled criminal, and as a result, his business and personal life suffer.

Public Disclosure of Private Facts

A person has the right to confidentiality over the specifics of their private life. A victim may have an invasion of privacy claim under if they reveal a secret about their private life to someone, and then that person discloses the secret to the public. Unfortunately, not all states recognize this type of cause of action, such as New York and Los Angeles. For example, a person reveals their sexuality to their boss, and then their boss publicly reveals it to the rest of the office or company.

Intrusion of Solitude

Intrusion of solitude describes a person’s right to not have their visible or physical privacy infringed or violated. This is most commonly seen in cases of stalkers, bullies, harassers, peeping toms (voyeurs), and intimidators. It is also common when someone snoops through another person’s private documents. For instance, a person learns that their neighbor has been secretly taking unflattering or undressed photographs of you and uploading them to his public website.

Appropriation of Name or Likeness

To have a valid claim for appropriation of name or likeness cause of action, a person must use your name or image as their own, without permission, for the purpose of benefiting in some way, whether commercially or non-commercially. This can include a person’s picture, portrait, voice, signature, or name. For example, a person uses a cancer patient’s picture and name to create a “Go-Fund-Me” page and earn money.

If you are concerned that your privacy has been violated in a manner that has negatively affected your reputation or character, it is important to discuss your questions with an experienced Indianapolis Indiana personal injury lawyer who can help you determine the best course of action for your losses and damages. Contact Carl Brizzi LAW at 317-636-7497 to schedule a free consultation and learn your eligibility for pursing legal action, today.

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Carl Brizzi Law Indianapolis Indiana
Carl Brizzi Law Indianapolis Indiana 317-636-7497

Do I Need a Car Accident Lawyer?

Indianapolis Indiana Car Accident Lawyers 317-636-7497
Indianapolis Indiana Car Accident Lawyers 317-636-7497

Each year, approximately 700 Hoosiers are killed in traffic collisions caused by distracted, speeding, and intoxicated motorists. Sadly, this tragic statistic doesn’t count the number of car accident survivors who sustain devastating physical and cognitive injuries on an annual basis. It can be difficult for a survivor to navigate the legal aftermath of a car accident, especially if they’re struggling to afford costly medical bills.

If you’ve been involved in an automobile accident, you may be interested in exploring your legal options. You may be working with your insurance company already; so do you need a personal injury lawyer to secure a favorable settlement?

One critical fact you need to remember throughout the duration of your case is that insurance companies are for-profit businesses. This means that an insurance claims adjuster will do everything they can to reduce or eliminate your damages, even if it means engaging in shenanigans to undermine your claim. Adjusters are paid to take advantage of injured people who are not represented by an experienced injury lawyer. The best way to maximize your claim is to retain the services of an experienced car accident attorney.

At Carl Brizzi LAW, our skilled and resourceful injury lawyers can investigate your case and develop an aggressive litigation strategy that proves the at-fault party is responsible for your injuries and financial losses. We will thoroughly assess the legal aspects of your case, collect critical evidence, and explain your legal options so that you can focus on recovering.

With our guidance, you can recover compensation that accounts for your medical expenses, lost wages, loss of earning capacity, and more. If you’re interested in learning how we can benefit your specific case, please schedule a free consultation with our firm today.

Most importantly, we will prevent the at fault party’s insurance company from taking advantage of your inexperience by negotiating with the insurance company representatives on your behalf and countering any low ball settlement offers by calculating, documenting and projecting all injury related expenses. Finally, if the case does not settle, our lawyers will litigate your case in court.

If you’ve been involved in a car accident we recommend first seeking medical attention, and then calling the attorneys at Carl Brizzi LAW for a free consultation.

For a comprehensive case review and evaluation of your car accident personal injury claim, contact our office today.

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Will My Personal Injury Settlement Be Taxed?

When injured victims are awarded compensation in a personal injury claim, it is because the opposing party was responsible for the accident, which directly caused the victim’s injuries and subsequent losses, also known as damages. Examples of personal injury damages include pain and suffering, as well as medical expenses, hospital bills, lost paychecks from time missed at work, and even mental and emotional traumas. In the case that the at-fault party was exceedingly reckless or negligence, or intentionally caused the accident, a victim might be awarded punitive damages, which are meant to punish the responsible party and set an example for the rest of the community.

In all cases of collecting compensation for damages in a personal injury case, a common question that arises has to do with taxes. Many accident victims want to know if they have to pay taxes on their personal injury settlement, and if so, which damages are taxable, and which are not. If you are asking yourself this same question as you prepare to file an injury claim, you will be pleased to know that most of your potential settlement will not be taxed; however, there are some types of awarded damages that will.

Continue below to learn some basic facts about personal injury settlements and taxes, including how to determine your eligibility for pursing legal action against the party who caused your wrongful accident.

Personal Injury Law Firm Indianapolis Indiana
Personal Injury Law Firm Indianapolis Indiana 317-636-7497

Personal Injury Settlements and Taxes

It can be confusing understanding which personal injury damages are taxable, and which are not, but the IRS does make the taxable statuses of all personal injury compensation clear. If you have questions, contact your local IRS office, or speak with a trusted Indianapolis injury lawyer.

NOT TAXED:

✤ Pain and Suffering

Many personal injury victims are awarded compensation for the pain and suffering they so wrongly had to experience as a result of their accident. These damages are non-taxable.

✤ Medical Expenses

In a successful personal injury case, accident victims are typically compensated for their medical expenses, such as bills, devices, medications, and therapy. These damages are non-taxable.

TAXED:

✤ Lost Work Wages

Victims can be awarded compensation to make up for the income they lost while recovering from their injuries. These damages are taxable, both state and federal, as well as all other applicable taxes that are generally deducted from paychecks.

✤ Punitive Damages

Courts often punish grossly negligent at-fault parties by awarding accident victim’s punitive damages. Although there are exceptions, these damages are usually taxable.

✤ Interest

In the case that a personal injury case goes to trial, it is possible for the court to add interest to the final judgement, starting from the date of the lawsuit to the date their settlement is paid out. This interest is taxable.

BOTH:

✤ Mental and Emotional Trauma

Depending on the details and circumstances of a victim’s incurred emotional trauma and mental anguish, damages awarded may or may not be taxed. Emotional trauma and mental anguish must originate from the physical injuries suffered from the accident in order to be non-taxable.

Here is an example to help you understand: If a person is seriously maimed in an animal attack accident, and as a result developed severe psychological effects or PTSD, damages awarded would be NON-TAXABLE. Oppositely, if the victim developed PTSD or similar psychological consequences as a result of being shunned or defamed after the accident, such damages would be TAXABLE.

Do you have questions about making a personal injury claim after a serious accident? Contact Carl Brizzi, a lawyer with Lewis And Wilkins LLP (LAW) at 317-636-7497 to schedule a free case evaluation with a skilled and experienced accident attorney in Indianapolis, Indiana. We represent injured persons throughout the State, and offer meetings over the phone or via online conference.

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Carl Brizzi Law Indianapolis Indiana
Carl Brizzi Law Indianapolis Indiana 317-636-7497