4 Things to Do After a Car Accident

Getting into an accident is a stressful experience, whether you’re in a simple fender bender or in an accident with property damage or injuries. It’s essential that you take the time to breathe, gather your thoughts, and take the necessary actions after an automobile accident. Keep these four things in mind that you should do after an accident to protect yourself and ensure everything goes as smooth as possible.

Remain at the Scene

Never leave the scene of an accident. Regardless of whether there are damages or injuries, it is illegal to leave the scene of an accident. If you do, even if you aren’t at fault, you will be charged with a hit and run. If at all possible, you should move the cars out of the middle of the road and try to make sure that everyone is safe. There’s no reason to let an accident get worse because you are in the middle of a road.

Take Pictures

It may not seem like the most important thing on your mind, but make sure that you take pictures of what happened to your car and the other person’s car and of the scene. If at all possible, get a picture of the cars before you move them to the side of the road. These photos will be used to evaluate the damage and help your insurance company come to a settlement. It will also keep the other person from claiming damages that were not a part of the crash. Make sure your pictures are taken in good lighting and from all angles.

Contact Your Insurance Company

When you get home, contact your insurance company and let them know what happened. The sooner they know about the accident, the sooner they can reach a resolution with the other person’s insurance company. When you contact them, they may want to take your statement immediately, so set aside some time to talk them through what happened. Before you call, take notes about what happened, where it happened, what the damages are, and what the police said. These notes will help you keep your story straight when talking to the agent.

Contact an Attorney

In the event that you or a passenger are seriously injured, you may want to consider a personal injury lawsuit. The purpose of this suit is not to punish the other person, but to help you pay for any medical costs that you incur because of the accident. Please be aware that, even if you have injuries, if you are at fault, you will probably not win the settlement. If you decide to pursue a lawsuit, you should find a lawyer who has experience dealing with personal injury and vehicle accident lawsuits. They will help you compile a strong case to get you the resources you need to help with your injuries.

Car accidents are scary and unpredictable, but the time afterward can be easier if you handle the accident aftermath appropriately. Hopefully, you won’t get into an accident and need to use these tips, but you’re well prepared if you do end up in the unfortunate incident.

Sources:

cprlaw.com

https://www.autoinsurancecenter.com/adjuster-talk-101.htm

http://www.carinsurancecomparison.com/how-to-take-car-accident-photographs/

https://www.statefarm.com/claims/resources/auto/what-to-do-after-auto-accident

Jenn Montgomery is a freelance writer, editor, and blogger based in San Diego. She writes on a variety of topics and enjoys learning new things. She graduated from San Diego State University with a degree in Rhetoric and Writing Studies. In her free time, she enjoys hiking, baking, and knitting. You can contact her on Twitter.

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Expert Warns of Rising Fraud Against Elderly

Bloomberg News profiles U.S. Bank’s Wendy Johnson, who “has been investigating suspicions of financial abuse of the elderly for six of her nine years on U.S. Bank’s complaints-and-investigations team,” and says that she is now more often “seeing cases of outright fraud. One common scenario, she says, is widows or widowers falling prey to romantic scams.” Johnson said that “the number of elder abuse cases referred to U.S. Bank’s complaints-and-investigations team more than doubled from 2014 to 2015, after the bank launched an education program.” Johnson notes that AARP and other organizations frequently advise older individuals to “expand their support base—go to church, join a book club, a bridge club, do volunteer work. Then you’re not sitting around shopping or chatting with people online.”

From the news release of the American Association for Justice.

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HIPAA Privacy Protections May Need Update to Keep Pace With Technology

Healthcare IT News reported the proliferation of digitized and connected health over the past two decades is raising questions over whether and how the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 should be reformed. “HIPAA combined with the HITECH Act strengthened privacy rights and helped patients take greater control over their own health information,” said AHIMA CEO Lynne Thomas Gordon, but “the challenge is to ensure HIPAA keeps pace” with technology. Former Office of the National Coordinator privacy officer Joy Pritts “said more stringent state laws have led to stronger privacy protections in HIPAA.”

From the news release of the American Association for Justice.

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Retail Savings Guide for Baby Boomers

The commercial site CouponChief.com has a page of good information about coupons and discounts for seniors. Here is a summary:

“How do you know that a business offers discounts for boomers and older adults? You can always ask. The discounts that you get will depend on location, season, individual store policy, and – if you let them know that you’re a senior. So if you’re 50 and above, embrace it and enjoy the perks that come with old age. Ask for discounts! The worst thing that can happen is you pay the regular price for the item or service you wish to purchase.

Or you can visit CouponChief.com’s Retail Savings Guide for Baby Boomers, which will walk you through the never-ending discounts available to senior citizens. When you have access to up-to-date lists of discounts for seniors, you’ll be amazed by the year-round savings you’ll get. You don’t have to wait for end-of-season sale like everyone else because you get to save on a lot of things all year round by virtue of your being a senior.”

Link: https://www.couponchief.com/guides/retail_savings_for_baby_boomers

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Red and Blue Lights: 4 Steps to Protect Yourself During a Traffic Stop

When you’re pulled over by a police officer, how you react can have a huge impact on how the experience develops. The important thing is to stay calm and reasonable. Whether you’ve run a red light or are accused of a crime, bad reactions only make things worse. Here are the steps you should follow to avoid stress for both you and the officer.

1. Pull Over

When you see those blue lights behind you, pull over. It’s the law, whether it’s you they’re after or not. In heavy traffic, put on your blinker, pull over to the right-hand side of the street, and stop in a safe spot.

Put out any cigarettes and turn off the engine. Roll down your window and wait for the officer with your hands clearly visible on the steering wheel. If it’s very dark, turn on your interior light so the officer has a clear view.

2. Talk to the Officer

When the officer comes to your window, your best bet is to ensure the officer remains calm. Don’t make any sudden movements, or reach for your license or registration, until asked to do so.

Normally the officer will tell you why you’re being stopped. If you feel you’ve been wrongly accused, say so, but without being angry, abusive, or deceptive. If you make a sincere and reasonable statement or apology, the officer may give you a break.

3. Behave and Cooperate

If the situation escalates, do as you’re told. Don’t get out of the car until the officer tells you to do so. You don’t want to give police any indication that you might run or are being resistant. You can worry about defending yourself in court. During the police encounter, listen to the officers and do as you’re told, even if it means getting arrested.

4. Know Your Rights

An officer generally can’t search your car without a warrant, unless they have probable cause such as drug paraphernalia in plain view. An officer can also order you and your passengers out of the vehicle and pat you down looking for weapons or contraband. They do not have the right to search your cell phone without your consent or a court order. You always have the right to remain silent. Don’t admit to anything.

In the event that your rights or person have been violated, you should contact Bennett & Sharp PLLC or a similar defense law firm in your area. You may be able to not only get the charges dismissed, but also recover compensation.

Author Info: Hannah Whittenly is a freelance writer and mother of two from Sacramento, CA. She enjoys kayaking and reading books by the lake. You can find her on Twitter.

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Nursing Home Industry Continues to Debate Arbitration Agreements

The Hill reports consumer groups are continuing their “last ditch effort to stop the Trump administration from stripping nursing home residents and their families of the right to take facilities to court over alleged abuse.” CMS has proposed removing Obama Administration-era requirements that prevented Medicare- or Medicaid-receiving nursing homes from mandating that residents sign arbitration agreements. The American Health Care Association is noted as having led a lawsuit against CMS and the Department of Health and Human Services over CMS’ decision to reconsider arbitration agreements. The AHCA “said Congress has repeatedly rejected legislation to invalidate arbitration agreements” and claimed the rule violated the Federal Arbitration Act.

From the news release of the American Association for Justice.

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Social Security Beneficiaries May Get Biggest Raise in 6 Years

From USA Today:

Social Security beneficiaries are projected to receive a 2.2% cost-of-living increase next year, the most since 2011, the trustees who oversee the program said Thursday.

That would be about $30 a month for the average retired worker. But It’s a relative bonanza compared to the 0.3% adjustment for this year and the unchanged paychecks in 2016. The cost of living adjustments have been low because of unusually weak inflation in recent years.

Social Security officials will release the official cost-of-living increase for Social Security recipients in October.

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3 Legal Must-Haves When Shopping For Home Insurance

If you own a home, there are several benefits of an insurance policy. It will usually protect against damage done to the home by a natural disaster. The policy will usually cover the belongings inside the home as well in the event of a natural disaster. Home insurance can provide coverage if there is a fire, and some policies will offer some type of protection in the event of a burglary. There are a few things that you need to keep in mind when you’re shopping for home insurance so that everything is properly in place.

Know What The Policy Covers

Before you sign any kind of insurance policy, you need to understand exactly what is covered. If you add coverage later on, then you might have to pay additional charges or fees each month or when you begin the new coverage. Find out what belongings the policy will cover and any structural damage that the policy covers. Some insurance companies won’t insure items that have no value or that are older and have no monetary worth. You also need to find out if the policy will cover extensions of the property, such as a pool or a shed. An insurance policy might not cover any business supplies that are in the home, but you should find out if any can be written off so that you can be compensated for what is lost.

Avoid Minor Claims

If something happens that warrants a claim that needs to be filed, you need to keep in mind that your monthly payment could increase. Only file a claim when it’s absolutely necessary. Some policies only cover a certain number of claims, so this is something that you need to consider before deciding which company to work with and when you file a claim. Most insurance companies will want you to get a policy with a higher deductible. This gives an incentive for not filing a mediocre claim because you would likely be wasting your money.

Length Of The Policy

If you don’t plan on staying in the home for a long period of time, then you want to find a policy that has a shorter term. Some policies are in effect for a year while others have a longer length of time. Find a policy that has a bit of flexibility until you see how long you’re going to live in the home. A professional, like those at Family Insurance Centers, will be able to give you an idea as to what coverage works best with how long you plan on being in the home or if you’re renting a home and want coverage.

When you’re shopping for home insurance, there are a few variables that you need to keep in mind. Talk to a few providers before making a final decision. Think about how much coverage you need and how much you want to spend each month before signing your policy.

Author Bio: Emma Sturgis is a freelance writer living in Boston, MA. When not writing, she enjoys reading and indoor rock climbing. Find her on Google +

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What Construction Businesses Need to Know About Insurance & Personal Injury

The field of construction is an art. Workers have the ability to craft stunning homes and businesses, and they work on the technical aspects as well. However, it is also a field that can bring into fruition a variety of injuries. Therefore, construction companies must have a keen awareness when it comes to insurance and personal injury on the job.

Check Local Insurance Requirements

Construction businesses generally need to have insurance for their employees. Insurance for construction business owners is a necessity, but the exact type of coverage can depend upon state and local requirements. Whether you’re just starting a construction business or you’re revising the way that you’re currently operating, you must find out what these requirements are. Keep in mind that requirements usually tell you what you must offer at the minimum. Consider the benefits of exceeding that.

Understand Your Insurance Policy

When you learn that you need a certain level of business insurance, you might hastily sign up with the first provider that you find. However, you must make sure that you understand the policy and what it requires of you. For example, you might now think that if your employees are injured on the job that you don’t need to pay anything, but that might be false. In other words, you may have to pay a deductible with the insurance taking care of the rest.

Avoid Personal Injuries

Dealing with personal injuries on the job is jarring. Construction accidents can cause serious injuries or even death. Therefore, you want to work to avoid these situations as much as possible. As a result, you should make sure that you are following all of the health and safety guidelines of the state and local area. On top of that, you need to ensure that workers are aware of these guidelines. You should have features in place that make certain employees are following the guidelines and know what to be aware of on construction sites. Holding workshops for your employees can help with this goal.

Know What to Do if an Injury Does Happen

When an injury occurs on the job, you want to make sure your employees know what to do. In fact, you may want to host a workshop that specifically tells them how to proceed in the event that they are injured on the job. You want to make sure that the process is handled in the most efficient way possible.

If you have a construction business, make personal safety a priority. Learning about insurance and guidelines can help tremendously.

Author Info: Hannah Whittenly is a freelance writer and mother of two from Sacramento, CA. She enjoys kayaking and reading books by the lake. You can find her on Twitter.

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FTC Charges Jellyfish Memory Supplement Makers with Fraud

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NBC News reports the FTC charged Quincy Bioscience with fraud for their marketing of Prevagen, “a memory supplement based on a glowing jellyfish protein.” The FTC alleges that the company is “falsely advertising it as a memory booster, and falsely claiming the product can get into the human brain.” The complaint holds that Quincy’s “Memory Study failed to show a statistically significant improvement in the treatment group over the placebo group on any of the nine computerized cognitive tasks.”

CNN reports Quincy called the charge “an unfounded and inaccurate complaint,” suggesting that the disagreement is due to “interpretation and analysis of the data,” and adding, “their experts simply disagree with ours over how to interpret the study results.”

From the news release of the American Association for Justice.

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