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CA Brothers Receive $50M Verdict in Semi-Truck Crash

Recently, two brothers in California were awarded $53.7 million dollars in a lawsuit against a semi-truck driver who hit them head-on.  According to reports, the two brothers were driving to begin their annual fishing trip when a semi-truck driver crossed into their lane and hit them head on.  Both brothers suffered traumatic brain injuries and damage to their backs and arms.

Tour bus and commercial truck drivers are a significant cause of motor vehicle accidents onAmerica's roads and highways. Often, these commercial drivers are fatigued and are driving above the mandated allotment of hours. Additionally, many of them are driving large vehicles that are not up to federal and state safety standards. As a result, other vehicles and motorcycle riders often bear the brunt of their illegal activity and are often seriously injured or die from a collision with the tour bus or commercial truck. If you have been injured or a loved one has died as a result of a commercial vehicle accident, please contact our law office for a consultation at no cost to you at the Law Offices of Attorney Doug Stoehr at 814-946-4100.

Original report here.

Insurance Companies Are Not Always Working For You

Insurance agencies can be incredibly difficult to deal with when you have been in an accident. Insurance companies are often in the news for overcharging and raising the rates for its consumers, especially when it comes to auto and homeowners insurance.  State and federal courts are working to hear many cases against people who feel that have been treated unfairly and illegally by these companies.  In some cases, certain insurance companies have been found to have been overcharging motorists about 200,000 separate times over a ten year span.  

Attorney Stoehr is uniquely qualified to handle your car accident claim against your insurance company, because he used to be an insurance agent before he became a personal injury lawyer.  Therefore, he can see the larger perspective of a potential insurance claim, especially when it involves a personal injury that you've suffered in a car accident!  Attorney Stoehr works hard for his clients to get them their appropriate compensation for any injuries they've suffered as a result of an accident due to the fault of another. 

Attorney Doug Stoehr is an Altoona based personal injury lawyer who takes claims for many clients who have been injured in automobile accidents.  He also takes cases for victims of distracted driving accidents in Altoona, Blair County, and the seven surrounding counties in Pennsylvania. For more information on his central Pennsylvania practice, please call his office at 814-946-4100 or visit his website at http://www.stoehrlaw.com

Hit and Run Pedestrian Accidents

Recently, a driver in Chambersburg was accused of hitting a teenager, then driving away.  This hit and run incident resulted in a broken leg.  Other people who were walking with the victim made multiple attempts to stop and alert the driver to what had happened, but the driver did not stop.  A person who was driving directly behind the car also attempted to get the driver to pull over, but was unsuccessful.  State police interviewed the man when he returned to the accident scene about 10 minutes later.

It is extremely unfortunate that things like this continue to happen in our community.  It is your responsibility as a licensed driver in the state of Pennsylvania to not only drive your care with care and caution, but also be aware of other hazards on the road.  Drivers frequently share the road with bicyclists, motorcycle drivers, and pedestrians, especially in more residential areas.
It is your duty as a member of your community to drive your car safely, responsibly, and with regard for the well-being and safety of others.  This is especially true to remember in cases where you've been drinking! Call a designated driver and save the life of not only yourself, but other innocent bystanders.  Also play it safe and do not engage in distracted driving, such as talking on your cell phone or texting.

Attorney Doug Stoehr is a central PA area attorney who takes cases where people have been injured or passed away due to the fault of another person, such as through car, pedestrian, bike, motorcycle, and truck accidents. For more information regarding his practice or to set up an initial consultation, please call his office at 814-946-4100.


For more on the accident, please click here:
https://www.publicopiniononline.com/story/news/crime/2018/02/16/chambersburg-motorist-accused-hitting-teen-then-driving-away/342503002/

What Documentation Do I Need For My Personal Injury Claim?

What kind of documentation do I need for a personal injury case?  This is a question that many of my clients ask.  Although documentation can vary based on your individual case, here are some good guidelines to consider (courtesy of PersonalInjury.com):


  • Document the actual accident, including writing down any details and keeping any photographs you have. Don't just rely on your memory!  Taking pictures at the scene of your accident is especially important.  
  • Keep a detailed record of your injuries, including pictures. 
  • Try and gather the contact information of the other party involved in your accident.  
  • Obtain a copy of the police report from your accident. This is your legal right, so don't be shy about asking for it!


Car accidents are a very real danger when driving, no matter on the highway or on a secluded country road.  These dangers are compounded when you are confronted by a drunk or distracted driver.  The physical and psychological damage caused by car accidents can be extensive and result in years of medical and professional care.  If you or a loved one has been injured in a car crash that was the fault of another, Attorney Doug Stoehr would be willing to set up a free consultation to discuss a possible legal claim involving your accident.  Attorney Stoehr has experience litigating personal injury claims relating to car crashes, and if you would like to meet with him, please contact our law office at 814-946-4100.


Original article may be found here

Independent Medical Exams and Your Legal Claim

When our law office sues on behalf of our clients for workers' compensation claims, these clients are sometimes asked to complete an independent medical exam on behalf of the insurance companies or employers. Unfortunately, these independent medical exams often appear unreliable and paint an incomplete and/or inaccurate picture of a client's true medical difficulties. 


This difficulty with independent exams is occurring across the country.  In Wisconsin, reporters have investigated this phenomenon (link at bottom of blog post).  According to their investigative report, many judges are becoming frustrated with the low quality of these exams as well.  Across cases, these medical experts tend to give the same opinion, noting that the injuries were not work related and "all in the patient's head".   One judge was reported as saying "A few of the experts' opinions were so predictable that it's almost a waste of time to read the report because you know what it's going to say."  


These independent examiners (IMEs) are hired by employers or insurance companies who wish to dispute various workers' compensation claims.  IMEs are sometimes hired long-term by insurance companies and travel across the country completing very short exams (in some cases, 3-5 minutes), and then write up the corresponding medical reports for their employers.  However, some states are beginning to investigate these dubious reports more frequently and are sometimes barring certain IMEs from testifying in court.  Overall, many IME reports tend to be biased, not comprehensive, and are sometimes grossly inaccurate.  Unfortunately, these IME reports can have a significant impact on a valid workers' compensation claim and lead to a delayed outcome and frustration on behalf of the injured worker. 

If you have a workers' compensation claim and are being treated unfairly in the process, it may be time to seek legal representation. Our law office is skilled in handling these types of claims.  For more information on our firm or to set up your free initial consultation, please call our Altoona, PA area office at 814-946-4100.


Please find the link to the original article here. 

Insurance Bad Faith Claims

Insurance "bad faith" legal claims may be more common than you think!  In our office, we unfortunately see many instances where insurance companies do not act "in good faith".  What this simply means is that insurance companies can't try and find ways to get out of paying or investigating a claim for you.  If they do this, they are acting "in bad faith".  There are many ways in which an insurance company can be acting in bad faith, but some of the more common ways include:

  • Denying you coverage
  • Not investigating your claim
  • Offering much less money than the claim is actually worth
  • Not communicating important information to you
  • Failing to pay a claim without investigating it first

Our law office is skilled in handling these types of bad faith claims. In fact, Attorney Doug Stoehr used to work for insurance companies before he became an attorney.  As such, he has a set of skills and knowledge of the insurance world that is well suited to handling these types of claims.  For more information or to set up your free initial consultation, please call his Altoona, PA law office at 814-946-4100.

National Large Truck/Bus Facts

Did you ever wonder if and how data on trucking accidents is tracked from year to year? Well, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) keeps data every year on statistics surrounding large truck and bus crashes.  Their most recent report is from the year 2015, and some of their statistics are startling! Take a look below:

  • From 2014-2015, the number of large trucks involved in fatal crashes increased by 8 percent
  • In that time time span, the number of buses involved in fatal crashes increased by 11 percent
  • Large trucks increased their miles traveled by 0.3 percent, and buses increased by 1.4 percent
  • Of the over 400,000 police-reported crashes that had large truck involvement, 1% were fatal crashes and 20% involved documented injuries 
  • Of those fatal crashes, 20% were single-vehicle, while 64% involved two or more vehicles
  • About 60% of those fatal crashes with large trucks were on more rural roads, while 25% were on interstate highways

Tour bus and commercial truck drivers are a significant cause of motor vehicle accidents onAmerica's roads and highways. Often, these commercial drivers are fatigued and are driving above the mandated allotment of hours. Additionally, many of them are driving large vehicles that are not up to federal and state safety standards. As a result, other vehicles and motorcycle riders often bear the brunt of their illegal activity and are often seriously injured or die from a collision with the tour bus or commercial truck. If you have been injured or a loved one has died as a result of a commercial vehicle accident, please contact our law office for a consultation at no cost to you at the Law Offices of Attorney Doug Stoehr at 814-946-4100.

For the official report, please click here

National Group to Study Trucking Habits

Earlier this month, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) announced they they are planning to survey tractor-trailer drivers to see how long their commute is to their trucking jobs, especially if their commute is greater than 2.5 hours.  This survey is part of a larger study that is examining commuting time as it relates to driver fatigue and safety.  FMCSA plans to get feedback not only on commuting time, but also work history, schedules, annual miles they drive, and their break and rest periods.  


Unfortunately, commercial truck drivers are a common cause of motor vehicle accidents on our roads and highways. Many times, these commercial drivers are fatigued and are driving above the mandated allotment of hours. Sometimes, they are also driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol.  Additionally, many of them are driving large vehicles that are not up to federal and state safety standards. As a result, other vehicles and motorcycle riders often bear the brunt of their illegal activity and are often seriously injured or die from a collision with the tour bus or commercial truck. If you have been injured or a loved one has died as a result of a commercial vehicle accident, please contact our law office for a consultation at no cost to you at the Law Offices of Attorney Doug Stoehr at 814-946-4100.

Original article can be found here:
https://www.ccjdigital.com/fmcsa-to-study-truck-drivers-commuting-habits-safety-impacts/undefined

Tractor-Trailer Goes Off Highway Near Pittsburgh

In the Pittsburgh area this week, a section of I-70 was closed due to a large tractor-trailer accident.  According to accident reports, the truck went off the road and got stuck between the guard rail and the highway.  The driver was trapped inside the car and received treatment at an area hospital for his injuries. At the time of the article, there was no mention of other cars being involved in the accident. 

Commercial truck drivers are a significant cause of motor vehicle accidents . Often, these commercial drivers are fatigued and are driving above the mandated allotment of hours. Additionally, many of them are driving large vehicles that are not up to federal and state safety standards. As a result, passengers and other vehicles often bear the brunt of their illegal activity and are often seriously injured or die from a resulting collision. If you have been injured or a loved one has died as a result of a commercial vehicle accident, please contact our law office for a consultation at no cost to you at the Law Offices of Attorney Doug Stoehr at 814-946-4100.

Ice and Snow May Mean "Slow!"

Are you up-to-date on winter safety practices? During this season, people have to take extra precautions due to the weather.  This is especially true when you are out walking.  According to our own regional UPMC website, there are many preventative measures you can take to prevent winter accidents.  Some of their suggestions include:

  • Make sure that you're consistently wearing boots or other slip-resistant shoes
  • Take extra precautions when entering and exiting your car
  • Watch for slippery floors at entrance points of homes and other buildings
  • Try to avoid carrying items, or walking with your hands in your pockets. This allows you to keep your hands and arms free for balance. 
  • As always, be careful of black ice.
  • Tap your feet on the ground to test for slippery areas, and walk flat footed if that area is icy.

If you have slipped and fell on the property of another, you may be entitled to compensation for medical bills and potential pain and suffering.  This may include cases where sidewalks were improperly maintained due to the winter weather, such as failure to remove snow and ice.   Attorney Doug Stoehr takes cases for clients who have sustained slip-and-fall injuries due to the fault or negligence of another.  For more information on his Altoona, PA area practice, please call his firm at 814-946-4100.

To read more from the UPMC article, please click here

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