Archive for June, 2012

8th Grader Files $15 Million Lawsuit for Vision Loss Suffered in Bullying Attack

Thursday, June 28th, 2012

Most parents presume that when they walk their children to the bus stop or drop them off at school, their children will be relatively safe and protected from violent assaults.  Unfortunately, bullying of students by fellow students is on the rise.  While a parent may reasonably assume that all that is needed to stop bullying of their child is to alert school administrators of the problem, sometimes administrators or teachers do not take sufficient action to protect children in their care.

A recent New York case in which a fourteen-year-old eighth grade boy may have permanently lost his vision in one eye serves as an example of the seriousness of the problem.  The boy suffered damage to his cornea in a brutal attack by bullies in the school cafeteria.  The parents say that the boy repeatedly informed the principle of prior attacks, but the boy’s $16 million lawsuit alleges that school administrators were “negligent” and “inept” in failing to take adequate action to protect the boy.  He has had to undergo two surgeries on his eye, and his vision loss in the eye may be permanent.

While it may be tempting to dismiss this brutal attack as something that happens in big cities like New York, the statistics on bullying make it clear that kids across the country are increasingly at risk of being physically attacked when school officials fail to provide adequate supervision, security or remedial action.

  • Over half of all school students report witnessing a bullying crime like a physical assault or battery.
  • More than seventy percent of children report bullying at school as an ongoing problem.
  • Ten percent of all students report seeing a student with a gun at school.
  • Approximately 280,000 kids per month report being physically attacked at school.

When you entrust your child to the supervision of school officials, it reasonable to presume that effective measures will be taken to prevent or remedy bullying so that your child does not suffer serious injury.  When school administrators ignore incidents involving hitting, punching, kicking and attacking students in their care, the school district may be liable if school officials fail to take adequate steps to prevent injury to students caused by bullies.  If your child has been attacked, it is important to put school administrators on notice immediately because they have a legal duty to take appropriate action to reduce the risk of future bullying incidents.

If your child has suffered serious injury because of the failure of school administrators to take reasonable action to prevent bullying, our experienced Mississippi personal injury attorneys may be able to help.  At Barrett Law, our experienced Mississippi personal injury lawyers represent injury victims throughout Mississippi.  Our law firm has roots that reach back 75 years so contact us today for your free initial consultation at (662) 834-2376 to see how we can help.


Mississippi Personal Injury Accidents Resulting Catastrophic Burn Injuries [Part II]

Wednesday, June 27th, 2012

Burn injuries are categorized by the severity of the burn.  A first degree burn is the mildest form of burn and impacts only the epidermis, which is the surface layer of skin.  While a first degree burn can be red and cause discomfort, these burns are essentially the equivalent of sunburns.  Second degree burns (partial thickness burns) are more serious because they involve not only the surface layer of skin but also the dermis, which is the skin underneath the surface layer.  If you do not obtain appropriate medical treatment for a second degree burn, it can develop into a third degree burn, which is extremely serious.  Third degree burns (full thickness burns) impact the skin all the way through to the hypodermis layer and take a prolonged period to heal because of the severity of the damage to multiple layers of skin tissue and other bodily structures.  Third degree burns cause charring of the skin and may result in extensive disfigurement often requiring skin grafts and extensive psychological therapy to cope with the trauma.

Smoke inhalation injuries are another serious type of fire related injury.  Smoke inhalation injuries are extremely serious and can occur with even a brief exposure to fire.  When a person breathes in extremely hot air, gases and particulate matter present in the smoke created by a fire, it can cause burning or swelling of the air passages and the lungs.  In structural fires and gasoline fed motor vehicle fires, carbon monoxide poisoning from smoke inhalation can prove fatal.

While many presume that the likelihood of being involved in a fire is minor, fire departments throughout the U.S. respond to a fire every twenty seconds.  If you are one of those victims who were injured in a fire caused by a motor vehicle accident, unsafe product, industrial accident or any other negligent conduct, the experienced Mississippi catastrophic burn injury attorneys at Barrett Law may be able to help you obtain the compensation you need for reconstructive surgery and emotional support to cope with the devastating injury and severe emotional trauma of severe burn injuries.

Experienced Mississippi Burn Injury Lawyers Providing Passionate Advocacy for Victims

If you suffer a serious burn injury caused by the negligence of a third party, our experienced and compassionate team of Mississippi catastrophic burn injury attorneys can guide you through the challenges of dealing with legal complexities and insurance hassles.  We recognize that you may be feeling bewildered by excruciating pain, overwhelming stress and staggering financial obstacles, but we are  available to evaluate your Mississippi burn injury case and advise you of your right to pursue a legal claim.  We have successfully represented thousands of injury victims throughout Mississippi so we urge you to call so that we can evaluate your claim and fight for your future.  At Barrett Law, our experienced Mississippi personal injury lawyers represent injury victims throughout Mississippi.  Our law firm has roots that reach back 75 years so contact us today for your free initial consultation at (662) 834-2376 to see how we can help.

Mississippi Personal Injury Accidents Resulting In Catastrophic Burn Injuries [Part I]

Tuesday, June 26th, 2012

A severe burn injury can cause overwhelming pain and disfigurement requiring a long difficult course of medical treatment, including surgeries and rehabilitation.  There are many types of personal injury accidents that can result in devastating burn injuries.  This two-part blog article provides information related to personal injury accidents that result in catastrophic burn injuries.  The life-altering physical injuries caused by an accident that causes catastrophic burns may be equaled by the extreme psychological challenges of coping with these painful debilitating injuries.  More than two and a half million individuals suffer a burn injury annually.  Over 600,000 of those burn victims suffer injuries serious enough to need medical treatment, and over 70,000 must be hospitalized.

Common Causes of Serious Burn Injuries in Mississippi

If you suffer a catastrophic burn injury caused by the negligent or reckless conduct of an individual, business or public entity, you may have a right to receive compensation for your injuries.  Negligence in its simplest sense is a legal term to describe the failure to exercise reasonably prudent conduct to avoid injury to another.  There are many causes of severe burn injuries including the following:

Residential/Commercial Structural Fire: Fires to structures are often caused by substandard construction or faulty wiring that violates building codes and other structural safety standards.  Structural fires may also be caused by other forms of negligence including defective or faulty gas lines, faulty wiring, careless smoking, unsupervised fires in fireplaces and a multitude of other factors.

Motor Vehicle Accidents: Anytime you are involved in a motor vehicle collision involving a negligent driver, there is a risk of injury from fire or explosion.  Damage to a motor vehicle may cause a gasoline leak, which can ignite and cause horrific burn injuries.  If you are involved in a serious motor vehicle accident, it generally is advisable to get everyone away from the vehicles in the case of a fire or explosion.  When a collision does cause a fire to ignite under the hood of your vehicle, it can be dangerous to open the hood because the sudden introduction of oxygen may cause the intensity of the fire to surge.

Defective Products: Some products have design or manufacturing defects that may cause a risk of fire.  If you are injured in a fire caused by a defective product, you may be able to pursue a product liability lawsuit against anyone in the production or distribution chain for the defective product.  There are certain products placed on the market that are known to pose a fire risk if not used properly.  A product with such an inherent fire risk must carry adequate warning and instructions for consumers so that unsuspecting consumers are not exposed to injuries in a fire.  Many small electrical devices may pose a risk of fire, but common examples include space heaters, portable camping stoves, wood stoves and other propane operated devices.

Industrial Accidents: Many manufacturing and industrial workplaces involve machinery and equipment that may have extremely hot components that can cause severe burns when they make contact with the skin.  Industrial burn injuries may also result from Mississippi refinery explosions and other industrial explosions and fires.

Gas Pipeline Explosion: A defective or damaged gas pipeline can cause an explosion or severe fire.

Chemical Burn Injuries: Chemical burns can result in devastating injuries that may go beyond one’s skin and damage bone and muscle tissue.  These burns, which may be caused by chemicals in industrial or construction settings, can be particularly dangerous because a burn victim may not be immediately aware that the chemical exposure is causing severe injury until it is too late.  While many chemical burns occur in a construction or industrial setting, they may also be caused by exposure to household chemicals.

If you have been involved in a serious tractor-trailer accident in Mississippi, the attorneys at Barrett Law provides a thorough investigation of the facts, extensive legal research, meticulously drafted pleadings and motions as well as compelling courtroom advocacy.  At Barrett Law, our experienced Mississippi personal injury lawyers represent injury victims throughout Mississippi.  Our law firm has roots that reach back 75 years so contact us today for your free initial consultation at (662) 834-2376 to see how we can help.

Mississippi Auto Accident Litigation Strategy: Identifying a Viable Defendant

Monday, June 25th, 2012

Serious auto accidents occur daily in Mississippi involving drivers that disregard safe driving practices and violate the speed limit, text and drive, drive while intoxicated and otherwise engage in dangerous driving behavior.  While you may have a legal right to pursue compensation in a Mississippi auto accident claim, sometimes identifying a viable defendant in a position to satisfy a judgment or settlement.  Even when a Mississippi auto accident results in devastating permanent injuries that involve enormous medical expenses or permanent disability from employment, it may not be feasible to pursue a personal injury lawsuit if there is not source of funds to satisfy a Mississippi auto accident settlement or verdict.  Our experienced Mississippi auto accident attorneys carefully investigate our clients’ cases to identify potential defendants and employ creative litigation strategies to obtain a fair financial recovery for our personal injury clients.

Many times there is a third-party that may also have contributed to your Mississippi auto accident.  Depending on the facts and circumstances of your case, a wide range of third parties may be liable for your injuries. If the person who was at fault in your auto accident was performing a work-related function, the company that employs the driver may be responsible for your injuries. These cases can be complex because many times the employer will dispute whether the particular tasks that the driver was engaged in were within the scope of employment.  It is not necessarily dispositive that the task occurred after hours or even that the employee voluntarily decided to undertake the errand.

Even if the driver of a vehicle does not have insurance, the owner of the vehicle who entrusted the driver with the vehicle may be liable for your injuries. When someone entrusts their vehicle to someone who lacks the maturity, competence or responsibility to drive safely, he or she may be liable for negligently entrusting a vehicle to a third-party.  For example, someone who lends one’s vehicle to a friend that he or she knows has a history of driving under the influence of alcohol or a pattern of past traffic accidents may be liable for your injuries.

Other parties that may be liable for your injuries include public entities, which may have designed or maintained a defective roadway and vehicle manufacturers that may have produced a defective automobile.  Our experienced Mississippi auto accident attorneys always explore the possibility of liability of a public entity or vehicle manufacturer, but this is especially important when the at-fault driver is not a viable defendant.  Public entities that know or should know of dangerous roadway conditions may be liable for failure to make a roadway safe or failure to provide adequate warnings of potential hazards.  An automaker that produces a defective automobile may also be liable for your injuries if the defective component contributed to your Mississippi auto accident.

If there is no other viable party against whom you may recover for your injuries, our Mississippi auto accident attorneys may be able to help you file a claim against your own uninsured motorist UM or underinsured motorist UIM coverage.  Uninsured motorist coverage is optional supplemental insurance coverage that may provide compensation for the same types of damages you might recover from a negligent driver if you are involved in a hit-and-run accident or an accident with an uninsured driver.  Uninsured motorist coverage is typically available for a relatively modest additional premium and can be invaluable if you find yourself involved in a serious car accident in Mississippi with no viable defendant to compensate your for your injuries.

Underinsured motorist coverage is slightly different in that it provides additional compensation when there may be a viable defendant in your case, but the defendant does not carry enough insurance coverage to compensate you for all of your loss. If you are faced with this situation, underinsured motorist coverage can provide additional compensation on top of the insurance coverage of a negligent driver.

Anytime you are involved in an auto accident in Mississippi you may face challenges in identifying a viable defendant with sufficient insurance to compensate you for all of your loss.  The Mississippi auto accident law firm of Barrett Law carefully investigates the circumstances of our clients’ Mississippi auto accidents so that we can identify all potential defendants and assess the best possible litigation strategy.  At Barrett Law, our experienced Mississippi personal injury lawyers represent injury victims throughout Mississippi.  Our law firm has roots that reach back 75 years so contact us today for your free initial consultation at (662) 834-2376 to see how we can help.

Speeding Increases the Frequency and Severity of Mississippi Car Accidents

Friday, June 22nd, 2012

Virtually everyone violates the speed limit at some point or at least drives faster than one should given road and traffic conditions.  While many people consider speeding to be a minor infraction, drivers guilty of speeding kill far too many people throughout Mississippi.  The faster a vehicle is moving the more stopping distance that is needed to avoid a car accident.  A car is also less responsive and more prone to rollover at high rates of speed when a driver engages in sharp steering maneuvers.  It is not only the case that you are more likely to be involved in a car accident when driving at a high rate of speed, but the severity of one’s injuries are also much greater when a driver is speeding.

Our Mississippi speeding accident attorneys have successfully represented those involved in car accidents with speeding drivers.  Because car accidents that occur at a higher rate of speed necessarily result in a more intense impact, it is important to have an experienced Mississippi car accident attorney that has handled a substantial number of car accident claims involving substantial injuries and even wrongful death.

The danger of being involved in a speed related accident is substantial given that 90 percent of all drivers admit to speeding, and 75 percent admit to doing so regularly.  Some people justify speeding based on the fact that they exceed the speed limit by only a small margin.  The problem with this reasoning is that even exceeding the speed limit by five mph can cause a serious car accident depending on where the speeding occurs.  Speeding is a significant factor in as many as one-third of all fatal car accidents.  The relationship between increased speed and a higher risk of car accidents is demonstrated by a study conducted by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) that revealed that increased speed limits resulted in an increase in the number of car accidents and auto accident related fatalities.

Speed frequently is also combined with alcohol and other dangerous accident risk factors.  An accident victim typically must establish negligence of the other driver to recover compensation for injuries.  Exceeding the speed limit or driving too fast for weather or road conditions generally will constitute negligence.  Speeding increases the probability of a driver being involved in a Mississippi car accident resulting in serious injury in a number of ways including:

  • Speeding decreases the amount of reaction time a driver has to engage in evasive maneuvers or to apply the brakes.
  • Excessive speed increases the risk of skidding on icy or wet roadways.
  • Stopping distance increases significantly as speed increases.
  • Speeding increases the force of impact in a collision with another vehicle, pedestrian or fixed object.
  • There is an increased risk of losing control of the vehicle when turning if a driver is speeding.

If you have been involved in a serious car accident in Mississippi caused by a speeding driver, Barrett Law provides a thorough investigation of the facts, extensive legal research, meticulously drafted pleadings and motions as well as compelling courtroom advocacy.  At Barrett Law, our experienced Mississippi personal injury lawyers represent injury victims throughout Mississippi.  Our law firm has roots that reach back 75 years so contact us today for your free initial consultation at (662) 834-2376 to see how we can help.

Fatal Drowning of 5-Year-Old Girls Grim Reminder of Swimming Pool Dangers

Thursday, June 21st, 2012

With the temperature rising as summer is upon us, kids are instinctively drawn to swimming pools.  While a swimming pool can be the source of endless hours of fun and recreation, it can also be an extremely dangerous place where children may suffer catastrophic injuries and wrongful death.  If your child is going to be at a home with a swimming pool, it is essential to understand who will be supervising your child and to ensure that your child is a proficient swimmer.  Parents should also confirm that any pool at a home that their child will be visiting is properly secured with a fence, locked gate, cover and/or similar protective measures.

A recent tragedy in Georgia serves as a grim reminder of the pool related dangers to children when there is inadequate supervision of children in the vicinity of a swimming pool.  Two five-year-old girls drowned while the grandparent of one of the girls who was the nanny of the other was preoccupied on a 45 minute phone call.  The nanny is now facing criminal charges and will likely be the subject of a wrongful death lawsuit brought by the parents of the girl that the nanny was supposed to be watching.

While this is a terrible tragedy, it is not rare when kids are left in the vicinity of swimming pools without close adult supervision.  The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) reports that drowning is the leading cause of fatalities involving children ages 1-4.  CDC data also reveals that younger children are most prone to suffering wrongful death caused by drowning in a swimming pool.  Because children spend more time in pools during the summer, approximately fifty percent of drowning incidents involving kids occur from June through the end of August.

The importance of vigilance regarding the location of small children around swimming pools can hardly be overstated.  Drowning data reveals that ninety percent of children that survive near drowning incidents are discovered within the first two minutes after falling into the pool.  There are many hazards that pose the risk of catastrophic injury or wrongful death including:

  • Falling in a pool and drowning
  • Drain entrapment accidents
  • Head injuries suffered when slipping on wet pavement
  • Diving board accidents
  • Accidents involving defective or missing lifesaving equipment

If your child is injured in a Mississippi swimming pool accident, our experienced Mississippi swimming pool accident attorneys provide effective legal representation to drowning victims and their families.  At Barrett Law, our experienced Mississippi personal injury lawyers represent injury victims throughout Mississippi.  Our law firm has roots that reach back 75 years so contact us today for your free initial consultation at (662) 834-2376 to see how we can help.

Seeking Compensation for Injuries Suffered in a Mississippi Grocery Store Accident

Wednesday, June 20th, 2012

When families make their regular trip to the grocery store to buy groceries in Mississippi, they may worry about their budget but usually are not concerned about the prospect of being involved in a grocery store accident which causes a debilitating injury.  Many more people are injured in grocery store accidents than might seem likely at first blush.  There are a multitude of situations that can result in a grocery store accident, including wet or sticky floors, groceries falling from shelves and items being left in the aisle causing a patron to trip and fall.

Effective Litigation Strategies and Liability Issues in Grocery Store Accident Lawsuits

Our experienced Mississippi grocery store accident attorneys have over a hundred years of collective experience representing those who suffer serious injuries or wrongful death caused by the negligence of property owners. When you are injured on the business premises of another, such as a grocery store, the outcome of your grocery store accident claim will depend largely on the specific facts of your situation.  Our Mississippi grocery store accident lawyers handle many grocery store accident claims and routinely investigate to obtain the following evidence:

  • Surveillance video
  • Witness statements including employees and other patrons
  • Grocery store maintenance records and procedures
  • Past accident reports and grocery store safety records
  • Testing and analysis of grocery store flooring
  • Training procedures for stacking and storing groceries
  • Safety inspection records by public entities
  • Records of OSHA regulation violations

Our Mississippi grocery store attorneys recognize that grocery store accidents can be caused by a wide range of causes including the following:

  • Slip, trip and falls on bulging or uneven area rugs carpets
  • Products that are not stacked properly on shelves
  • Spilled liquids including beverages, oils and the similar sticky or slippery substances
  • Inadequate warnings or lack of barriers around wet floors or other hazards
  • Defective steps or missing handrails
  • Unstable store displays

If you are injured in a grocery store accident, the liability of the grocery store chain will depend on premises liability law.  Mississippi premises liability law imposes an obligation on grocery store owners to keep their business premises reasonably safe for members of the public that come on their property including patrons, employees, venders and others.  Slip and fall accidents are the most common type of grocery store accident.  These accidents frequently result from spills of liquid products or a failure to keep the bathroom floor dry by implementing proper maintenance and cleaning procedures.

The Grocery Store Claim Process

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that in excess of a million people per year are injured in slip and fall accidents.  Slip and fall accidents can be particularly dangerous for the elderly who may face a slow recovery time and require surgery and/or the  insertion of medical devices such as a hip replacement medical device.  While many people presume that slip, trip and fall accidents only result in minor injuries, they often result in serious head injuries as well as other debilitating injuries.  The CDC also reports that approximately 17,000 people per year die in slip and fall accidents.

Our grocery store accident attorneys zealously represent those injured in a grocery store whether it is a big chain supermarket or small mom and pop grocery store including Ralphs, Albertsons, Safeway, Stater Bros, Safeway, Vons, Costco, Food 4 Less, Sam’s Club, Raley’s, Save Mart or WinCo Foods or any other Mississippi grocery store.  Large grocery store chains are accustomed to facing premises liability lawsuits and have substantial litigation resources to defend against such claims.  The insurance company for the grocery store chain may contact you and ask you for a recorded statement so that they can “process your claim.”  It is important not to be fooled by this tactic.  The insurance company’s sole motivation is to minimize your recovery.  Before speaking with an attorney for the Mississippi grocery store where you were injured, you should speak with an experienced Mississippi grocery store accident attorney at Barrett Law so that we can help you avoid compromising your Mississippi grocery store accident lawsuit.

Our Mississippi grocery store accident lawyers understand that those who suffer injuries in trip and fall accidents or accidents involving merchandise falling off of shelves may face enormous challenges dealing with their physical injuries and escalating financial obligations.  Barrett Law offers thorough investigation, persuasive legal analysis and effective advocacy.  At Barrett Law, our experienced Mississippi personal injury lawyers represent injury victims throughout Mississippi.  Our law firm has roots that reach back 75 years so contact us today for your free initial consultation at (662) 834-2376 to see how we can help.

Injured at a Resort or Hotel While on Vacation: Now What Do I Do?

Tuesday, June 19th, 2012

Many people descend on Mississippi each year to enjoy all that our state has to offer for vacationing tourists.  When you are injured while traveling, it can be particularly stressful because you are in an unfamiliar location, which makes dealing with medical treatment, insurance issues and legal claims even more challenging.  Whether you are injured while vacationing in Mississippi or at a resort elsewhere in the United States, a serious injury can ruin your vacation and more importantly result in long-term disabling injuries.

Our experienced resort and travel accident attorneys have represented clients injured while traveling on vacation or business in Mississippi or elsewhere in the United States as well as destinations around the world.  Because we have worked with many injury victims who have been injured while on vacation, we understand the unique challenges a person faces when he or she suffers serious injury in an unfamiliar place.  If you are injured while traveling outside the United States, you may face challenges of dealing with uncooperative foreign officials or questions of choice of law and jurisdiction issues.  The experienced travel accident attorneys at Barrett Law can help you navigate these complex legal issues to ensure that you receive the financial compensation you need to rebuild your life and move past your resort accident.

Generally, the owner of a resort or hotel has an obligation to maintain the premises in reasonably safe condition to prevent injury to guests at the resort.  The law in Mississippi and much of the United States places an even higher obligation on resorts and hotels to take care to protect their guest because of their unique and exclusive control over the premises.  Hotels and resorts have an obligation to warn patrons of unsafe conditions that are not immediately obvious.  Many large resorts are massive and have a wide range of potential dangers and hazards that can cause injury to guests.

Most Common Types of Travel Accidents

Our Mississippi travel accident lawyers have the experience and ability to represent you if you are injured by a wide range of hazards and accidents including:

  • Bus or van accidents
  • Negligent security
  • Ski boat, pontoon boat and watercraft accidents
  • Accidents involving mopeds or scooters
  • Personal watercraft accidents (Jet Ski, Wave Runner, Sea-Doo)
  • Slip and falls on wet surfaces
  • Food poisoning
  • Car accidents or other motor vehicle collisions
  • Trip and fall accidents
  • Drowning accidents
  • Failure to warn of hazardous conditions

Legal Complexities in Travel Injury Litigation

Although corporations that run resorts, hotels and other recreational vacation facilities are held to a higher duty of care to protect visitors than other property owners, sometimes even a 5 star luxury resort is not diligent about inspecting the premises for potential hazards, providing adequate training to personnel or responding promptly and effectively when a potential hazardous condition exists.  If you are injured in an accident in a resort, hotel or other lodging facility while traveling, you may face unique legal challenges that are not present in other types of cases including:

  • Evaluating the country/state that has jurisdiction to adjudicate the travel accident lawsuit?
  • Determining which state or country’s laws will apply to your resort or hotel legal claim?
  • Applicability of discovery procedures to obtain critical evidence including witness testimony, document production, and other essential forms of fact gathering
  • Differences in substantive tort (personal injury law), court rules, evidentiary rules and civil procedure

These are just a few of the unique legal and factual challenges that you may face if you are injured in a Mississippi travel accident or a similar accident throughout the United States or a foreign country.  Our experienced and committed resort accident lawyers have over a century of collective experience handling serious injury claims on behalf of accident victims, including serious injuries that occur while families are traveling for vacation or business.  We can provide an analysis of your travel accident so that we can offer legal advice regarding your best options and potential recovery.

If you have suffered a serious injury while on vacation caused by a hazard at a resort, spa or hotel, the experienced Mississippi personal injury attorneys at Barrett Law provide careful investigation of your case, diligent legal research, and persuasive courtroom advocacy.  At Barrett Law, our experienced Mississippi personal injury lawyers represent injury victims throughout Mississippi.  Our law firm has roots that reach back 75 years so contact us today for your free initial consultation at (662) 834-2376 to see how we can help.

Surgical Errors and Hospital Errors Can Have Life-Changing Consequences

Monday, June 18th, 2012

Many people throughout Mississippi place their faith in surgical teams and hospitals on a daily basis.  Surgical patients presume that their surgeon and the rest of their medical team will exercise a high level of skill and expertise.  However, surgical mistakes and infections are much more common than most surgical patients realize.  Although there have  been focused efforts to reduce  the number of surgical errors in recent years, surgical mistakes and infections in and out of the operating room remain a serious problem.  According to the Archives of Surgery, there are 5 to 10 surgical errors throughout the United States every day.

When you or someone you love is the victim of a surgical error or surgical infection, the surgical mistake can have a devastating impact on the quality of your life.  Serious medical errors can result in permanent debilitating injuries or even wrongful death.  At Barrett Law, our experienced Mississippi medical malpractice attorneys understand the potentially devastating impact of suffering a serious injury caused by surgical errors and provide innovative litigation strategies and persuasive courtroom advocacy on behalf of the victims of negligent surgical procedures.  If the surgeon or other member of the surgical team causes your injury because of medical negligence, you may have a right to seek compensation for your injuries.

Because there are usually multiple members of the surgical team, there are many types of negligent conduct that may be the basis for medical malpractice claims during a surgical procedure. Some of the most common types of surgical mistakes include the following:

  • Anesthesia Mistakes: Most surgical procedures require some form of anesthesia.  When general anesthesia is used, the process of administering anesthesia can be the most dangerous aspect of a surgical procedure.  An anesthesiologist is charged with carefully monitoring a patient to ensure that the patient is not given too much or insufficient anesthesia.
  • Wrong Site/Patient Surgery: This occurs when surgery is performed on the wrong part of the body or the wrong patient.  This type of error is not nearly as rare as many might presume with recent industry data indicating that this type of error accounts for 13 percent of all medical mistakes.
  • Improper Delegation: When a surgeon assigns or delegates a portion of the surgery to another member of the medical team, the surgeon remains responsible for any surgical errors or mistakes.
  • Unnecessary Surgical Procedures: These involve billing and performing surgeries for which there is no legitimate medical basis.  An example might include a surgical removal of the colon when there has been no diagnostic result justifying such a procedure.
  • Lack of Prompt Recognition of Errors: Although any surgical mistake poses potential dangers to the patient, sometimes promptly addresses the mistake can prevent or mitigate any serious damage.  When the surgeon fails to promptly identify and correct the mistake, this failure can result in even more serious injuries.
  • Substandard Medical Techniques: This may involve inadvertently severing an artery or leaving behind a sponge when closing up a surgical incision.
  • Surgical Infection: When a sponge or other items is left in the body following a surgical procedure or a surgical incision site is not treated properly, it can result in potentially fatal infection.
  • Failure to Perform Surgery: Surgery often is essential to treat a particular medical condition but attending nurses will fail to let the surgeon know about critical changes in a patient’s condition, or the surgeon is unavailable when summoned to perform the surgery.

When you need a surgical procedure, you must rely on the professional skill and expertise of your surgeon and surgical team.  Sometimes surgical mistakes are a product of the failure of members of the surgical team to communicate effectively in the operating room.  The surgeon sets the tone for communication in an operating room and is responsible for promoting open communication that reduces the likelihood of surgical mistakes.  When a surgical team makes a critical mistake like amputating the wrong limb or subjecting you to an unnecessary surgery, it can mean excruciating unnecessary pain, revisionary surgery, disability from employment and impairment of a patient’s enjoyment of life along with other potential costs.

If you or your loved one suffers serious injury or a close family member dies because of a surgical errors, you may be entitled to the compensation necessary to move past your injuries.  At Barrett Law, our experienced Mississippi personal injury lawyers represent injury victims throughout Mississippi.  Our law firm has roots that reach back 75 years so contact us today for your free initial consultation at (662) 834-2376 to see how we can help.

The Danger of Suffering Serious Injury in a Fall on a Mississippi Construction Site

Friday, June 15th, 2012

There are a substantial number of serious injuries and even fatalities on construction sites every year that make construction a dangerous occupation.  There are almost 150,000 construction accidents resulting in injuries with many of the injuries being the results of falls in slip and fall and trip and fall accidents.  There are an enormous number of fall hazards on construction sites including equipment, uneven terrain, trenches, debris and many other tripping hazards.  The experienced trip and fall construction accident attorneys at the Mississippi law firm of Barrett Law understand that construction projects are confusing places with lots of moving parts and a wide variety of entities that can make the investigation of a construction project accident complicated.  We have successfully represented clients throughout Mississippi injured in falls on construction sites.

Litigation of a slip, trip and fall accident on a construction site is much different than a similar fall accident in a store or business.  Construction projects are a whirlwind of activity with a variety of sub-contractors, trades and heavy machinery as well as tools, cables and wires on the ground.  Because of the enormous number of slip, trip and fall risks on construction sites, construction workers and visitors are often injured in slip, trip and fall accidents.  A construction accident involving a slip and fall caused by the failure to properly use warnings or barriers to prevent injury or make the hazard safe may be the basis for a personal injury lawsuit.  However, construction project slip and fall accidents generally may only be the basis of a personal lawsuit if it is brought against an at-fault party other than your employer.  The Mississippi workers’ compensation system is the exclusive remedy against an employer for injuries on a construction site.

Falls on construction sites are a much more common cause of injury than many people realize.  They constitute the most common cause of fatal construction accidents.  Falls on construction sites also account for a third of all construction site related fatalities.  There are a broad range of hazards that may cause slip, trip and falls including the following:

  • Falls from scaffoldings
  • Slipping and falling of ladders
  • Broken pavement on sidewalks
  • Falls from stairs or ramps
  • Trenches or holes that are not marked
  • Spilled liquids like tar, water or grease that puddle

Passageways on construction sites provide an illustration of the variety of hazards that may cause slip, trip and fall accidents.  Dirt and debris may build or other obstructions may cause a construction worker or visitor to trip.  Sharp objects may also protrude into the passageway causing one to fall.

Our experienced Mississippi construction accident slip, trip and fall accident lawyers utilize construction industry experts and conduct a thorough investigation of construction accidents.  We also engage in meticulous discovery to obtain evidence of OSHA violations or other safety regulations.  We often identify multiple potential third party defendants for a personal injury lawsuit to supplement a workers’ compensation claim against an employer.  At Barrett Law, our experienced Mississippi personal injury lawyers represent injury victims throughout Mississippi.  Our law firm has roots that reach back 75 years so contact us today for your free initial consultation at (662) 834-2376 to see how we can help.