Traumatic Brain Injuries

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Sports fans have been hearing more and more the last several years about the dangers of concussions and traumatic brain injuries.  The NFL and NHL lawsuits regarding sports related head injuries have brought publicity to the devastating long term effects of concussions.  Due to this litigation, sports leagues have been taking more precautions to protect athletes from returning to action too soon.  While concussions and TBIs (traumatic brain injuries) occur frequently on the playing field, they are also a common occurrence in motor vehicle accidents, workplace accidents and slip/trip and fall accidents.

Traumatic Brain injuries can be caused by a blow to the head, but can also be caused by rapid acceleration/deceleration (whiplash) of the head, which often occurs in motor vehicle accidents.  The CDC (Center for Disease Control) found that in 2013 motor vehicle accidents were the third leading cause of TBI related emergency room visits, hospitalizations and deaths.  https://www.cdc.gov/traumaticbraininjury/get_the_facts.html

The effects of a TBI can be temporary, but they can also last for the rest of your life.  If you feel you have suffered a TBI seek medical evaluation.  The symptoms of a TBI can include:

Headaches;

Poor memory;

Difficulty with word finding;

Poor concentration;

Fatigue;

Unusual Temper;

Vision changes;

Changes in sense of smell;

Changes in sense of taste;

Depression;

Irritability;

Difficulty with organizing daily tasks; and

Problems with balance, dizziness or vertigo.

The Trial Attorneys at BGR are experienced in handling claims involving TBIs.  Recently our attorneys Steve Goff, Brian Laule, Tracy Tool and Dean Rohde participated in the Minnesota Brain Injury Alliance 32nd Annual Conference for Professionals in Brain Injury.      https://www.braininjurymn.org/events/  The conference was attended by professionals in the brain injury community who also serve the needs of individuals whose lives have been touched by brain injuries. If you have been diagnosed with a TBI contact us for a free case evaluation.

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Premises Liability: Can You Recover for a Fall at a Retail Store?

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Last week we discussed slip and falls on ice.  Slip and falls involving snowy or icy conditions are common in the winter and spring.  The Attorneys at BGR are experienced in handling slip and falls on ice, but we also represent people who are injured due to slippery conditions and/or tripping hazards inside retail stores.

We don’t typically think of shopping as a dangerous activity.  However, a trip to the grocery store, a big box store, or your favorite retail chain can be more dangerous than you think.  It is difficult to do your shopping and keep an eye out for dangers that are low to the ground.  While shopping we have a tendency to always look up.  We are looking for the items we want to purchase and at signage directing you throughout the store. We are also distracted by displays put out by the retailer.  In fact, the stores do not want you looking at the ground.  They set up the stores to direct your attention upwards and to view the items they are selling.

For this reason, store owners need to keep the floors clear of slippery conditions and remove items that are low to the ground.  For example, they may have wet floors due to other customers tracking in snow or water from the outside.  Spills can occur and need to be taken care of promptly.  They may have a cooler or freezer malfunction that is leaking water.  It is important for store owners to perform periodic “sweeps” of their floors to make sure slippery conditions are taken care of as soon as possible.

Store owners also need to make sure that empty pallets and boxes used for stocking are promptly removed.  They also need to make sure that their displays are tall enough and stocked high enough for people to see.

If you fall while shopping, always remember to document the accident scene with a photograph.  It might not be the first thing on your mind, but most people carry a cell phone with a camera.  Also make sure to report the incident to the manager or supervisor on duty.

Contact Us Today

The personal injury attorneys at Bye, Goff & Rohde understand that slip-and-fall injuries can have a long-term impact on your health and finances. With 40 years of experience, we know how to build an effective premises liability case. Contact us today at 1-800-607-3030 for a free consultation.

Premises Liability: Can You Recover for Slipping on an Icy Surface?

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Winter might be winding down, but there is still ample opportunity for snow, ice and other wintry precipitation in the Badger State, which can make for slick sidewalks, parking lots, driveways and roads.

While icy conditions are dangerous for drivers, pedestrians are also at risk. In January, the La Crosse Tribune reported that numerous hospitals have treated above-average numbers of patients for ice-related injuries, including concussions, fractures and bruises. Many of these injuries were sustained when people slipped and fell on icy walkways. Doctors recommend taking certain precautions, like keeping your arms extended out to your sides to maintain balance and wearing an extra layer of padding.

Proving Liability for Your Slip-and-Fall Accident

Slippery surfaces make it especially difficult for customers, who can easily slip and fall in a parking lot or sidewalk while trying to visit a restaurant, department store or other retail establishment.

The Wisconsin Safe Place Law requires business owners to maintain their premises in a manner that is as safe as reasonably possible (for both employees and customers). For example, owners must remove snow and ice from outside their stores in a reasonable amount of time. (What is considered reasonable often depends on the circumstances.) If the owner outsources snow and ice removal to a third party, that party can also be held liable for a customer’s slip-and-fall injury.

While business owners are responsible for keeping their premises safe for customers, injured customers are responsible for proving their case. Here are a few tips for ensuring that you have enough evidence to establish the owner’s liability:

Take photographs of the conditions that led to your injury and the surrounding area.

  • Document exactly what happened and when — note the date and times.
  • Go to the doctor so that you have medical records documenting the extent and likely cause of your injuries.
  • Take note of any eye witnesses who might be willing to testify on your behalf.

Contributory Negligence

To recover damages from a business owner, you have to prove that the owner acted negligently and that his negligence caused your injury. If the business owner proves that your own negligence contributed to the injury, then the amount of damages you’re entitled to recover will be reduced by your percentage of negligence.

What does this mean? If the business owner can prove that you weren’t watching where you were going, or that you strayed from a clearly marked walkway where the snow and ice had already been removed, or anything that shows you were at least partly at fault, you won’t recover full damages. And if the business owner can prove that your negligence was greater than his negligence, then you might not recover any damages at all. That’s why it’s important to hire an experienced personal injury attorney who can help you prove your case.

Contact Us Today

The personal injury attorneys at Bye, Goff & Rohde understand that slip-and-fall injuries can have a long-term impact on your health and finances. With 40 years of experience, we know how to build an effective premises liability case. Contact us today for a free consultation.

 

River Falls High School Mock Trial Team is 2017 State Runner-Up

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The River Falls High School Mock Trial team has made school history by capturing the second place title in the State Mock Trial Tournament held in Madison on March 11-12, 2017.  Before this year, the highest placement at state for River Falls High School had been third place.  The team won the Region 1 title in the regional mock trial competition held in Eau Claire, Wisconsin on February 11th.

Mock trial students play the roles of both attorney and witness as they prepare a fictitious case to compete against mock trial teams from other schools. In preparation for mock trial tournaments, students learn basic court procedures and litigation strategies and strengthen their critical thinking, advocacy, and teamwork skills.

This year’s teams argued a criminal case involving an opiate overdose and the alleged culpability of the defendant in the case, “Tristan Marks”.  In any given round, each team serves as either the prosecution or the defense and that, typically, each team’s prosecution and defense compete twice.

The River Falls High School team has participated in the State Mock Trial Tournament for 11 of the past 14 years. The team is coached by River Falls High School teacher Heather Boleman and attorney Tracy Tool of Bye, Goff & Rohde, Ltd.

This year the National Mock Trial Championship will take place in Hartford, Connecticut on May 12th-14th.  Read more about the Wisconsin High School Mock Trial Tournament on the State Bar of Wisconsin’s website.

Mock Trial 2017

Attorney Tool Presents Seminar Lectures

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Bye, Goff & Rohde partner, Tracy N. Tool, lectured at the National Business Institute Human Resource Law seminar held in Eau Claire, WI on Wednesday.  Tool delivered presentations on “Employee Handbook Policies in the 21st Century” and “Alternative Dispute Resolution in the Employment Context”.  Tracy, along with other lawyers including Dean Dietrich, Tanya Hubanks and Heather Marx addressed current employment and labor related topics to human resource professionals.

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New Regulations Help Nursing Home Residents Seek Justice

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The United States Department of Health and Human Services finalized an administrative rule that will deny Medicare and Medicaid benefits to nursing homes that require residents to sign forced arbitration agreements.

The new regulations will help preserve the rights of individuals injured as a result of nursing home neglect.  These important rights include the right to seek a jury trial for a civil claim.

Mandatory arbitration clauses have faced criticism in a variety of fields, including nursing home justice and employment law.  Arbitrators sometimes are seen as favoring the industry in which claims arise.  Claimants who must arbitrate claims instead of going to court face a lower success record and lower damages recoveries.

Accordingly, the new regulations are necessary to level the balance of rights between injured patients and the nursing homes that cause the injuries.  The regulations are scheduled to become effective November 28, 2016:

https://s3.amazonaws.com/public-inspection.federalregister.gov/2016-23503.pdf

Persons injured as a result of nursing home neglect have a right to consult a lawyer.  The attorneys at Bye, Goff & Rohde, Ltd. represent persons injured in nursing homes.  A free consultation is available at 1-800-607-3030

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If I Lose My Case, Do I Get a Second Chance?

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Individuals injured in accidents sometimes ask what will happen if they lose their case.  Normally, a person is allowed to pursue a particular injury claim only once.  If a court case is lost, rules of procedure bar filing the case a second (or third or fourth) time.

Because injury cases are civil cases, even new evidence generally is not a sufficient reason to permit a second case arising from the same injury.

Consequently, an injured party should seek advice from a qualified attorney before settling a case or pursuing a case in court.  The claim should be presented in a thorough and complete  manner that accounts for the past and the future effects of the injury.

Bye, Goff & Rohde represents persons injured in accidents, and offers lawyers with significant experience in pursuing claims and, when necessary, conducting trials and appeals to ensure just results for the firm’s clients.  Free consultations are available at 1-800-607-3030.

BGR Partners Honored as Super Lawyers

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Chuck Bye, Steve Goff, Dean Rohde and Tracy Tool recently were named 2016 Super Lawyers, while Brian Laule was named a Rising Star.  All five of these BGR partners are board certified civil trial specialists.

Attorneys are nominated and rated by their peers, with only five percent receiving the Super Lawyer designation.

BGR’s attorneys and staff aggressively represent clients throughout Wisconsin and Minnesota.

Bye Goff and Rohde Participates in Charity Dodgeball Tournament

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On March 15, 2016, two teams from Bye Goff and Rohde participated in Ellsworth Community Charity Dodgeball Tournament.  Of the eight teams participating in the tournament, the winning team got to donate the proceeds to a charity of their choice in the area from the following list:

Ellsworth School Foundation
Our Neighbors’ Place
Ellsworth Food Shelf
Feed My Starving Children

Although neither of the Bye, Goff and Rohde teams won the tournament, there was a lot of fun and money READ MORE