Dedicated and Compassionate Kansas City Attorneys Answer Frequently Asked Questions about Car Accidents, Nursing Home Neglect, and Other Personal Injury Matters
The attorneys at The Gorny Law Firm in Kansas City travel the country helping people who have been injured by the negligence or wrongful conduct of others. Below are answers to some of the questions our lawyers encounter most often as they advise and represent people injured in car and truck accidents, slip and fall accidents, nursing home abuse and neglect, medical malpractice, and more. If you have other questions, or if you need assistance in a personal injury matter in Kansas City, in Missouri or Kansas statewide, or elsewhere, call The Gorny Law Firm at 816-756-5071 for a free consultation.
The insurance company says I was partially to blame in causing my car accident. Does that mean I cannot recover from the other driver, whom I believe was responsible for causing the crash?
There are only a very small number of states where your own negligence will keep you from recovering any compensation at all from another negligent driver. Most states have some form of comparative fault, where the percentage of fault attributed to you will decrease your award in proportion to your fault, but won’t prevent you from a recovery. In Kansas, as long as you were not more at fault than the other driver, you can still file a lawsuit to recover damages. In Missouri, it doesn’t matter what percentage of fault is assigned to you; you can still recover damages from the other driver in proportion to their level of responsibility in causing the accident.
Don’t let the insurance company tell you that you were to blame. They want to pay as little as possible and will try to shift as much of the blame for the accident as they can onto you. At The Gorny Law Firm, we work hard to establish the other driver’s negligence, and to keep you from being saddled with any portion of negligence or fault that does not belong to you.
How long do I have to file a lawsuit before time runs out?
The period to file a personal injury lawsuit, known as the statute of limitations, is different from state to state. In Kansas, the time frame is two years from the date of the accident or injury, while in Missouri you have up to five years to file a claim. Failing to file within the applicable statute of limitations can mean that you are forever barred from recovering for your injuries, so it is very important to contact an attorney early to ensure that the applicable time frames and deadlines are met.
There are also certain situations where the applicable statute of limitations may be longer or shorter than the general rule. For instance, in cases of medical malpractice, you may have only two years from the date of injury to file suit in Missouri, while in Kansas the clock starts only when you discover the injury, up to four years from the date the malpractice occurred.
Is the nursing home allowed to put my mother in restraints?
Nursing home workers may be tempted to place residents in restraints as a form of punishment or discipline, or simply to make their job easier. However, the only time when restraints are allowed is when they are necessary for the safety of the resident or others. This need should be documented in the resident’s medical record where it is justified by a physician. Otherwise, the nursing home is likely violating your mother’s rights by placing her in restraints. Residents left in restraints are more likely to be neglected, and the improper use of restraints is a common example of nursing home negligence .
Restraints can include more than belts and straps that keep a person tied to a bed or chair. Bedrails, hand mitts, and even lap trays or tables, if used for the purpose of restraint, may also be unlawful. In addition to physical restraints, be aware that nursing homes may use chemical restraints as well. These include sedatives, antipsychotic medication, and anti-anxiety medication given solely to make the resident more docile or easy to manage. Unless medically necessary, the use of such drugs can be detrimental and dangerous to the patient’s health. The misuse of medications in nursing homes is widespread. If you believe your relative is being mistreated, call 816-756-5071 to speak with a lawyer.