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Chronic Pain and Workplace Performance

One of the main problems surrounding symptoms of chronic pain is how it influences every aspect of your life.  Chronic pain is often not a disorder that changes its symptoms or decreases across situations.  Due to this, chronic pain can lead to problems in other aspects of your life, such as socially, athletically, and in workplace performance.

An article by Human Resource Executive Online addressed this problem in one of their online articles.  According to the article, HR professionals have an obligation to look for the signs of chronic pain and approach employees about it when appropriate.  Additionally, these professionals should familiarize themselves with the laws and regulations surrounding disabilities (professionally diagnosed chronic pain is considered both a medical condition and a disability). Workers with chronic pain do have rights under the Americans With Disabilities Act.  The article also acknowledged that chronic pain can carry stigma for the suffer, so HR representatives should be sensitive when broaching the subject.  Many companies also have infrastructure in place to support people with disabilities, so HR representatives should work to try and get those services put in place for the sufferer of chronic pain.   Overall, it is prudent on the part of the employee and HR representative to work together to discuss the medical condition and come to grips with how that will affect their job performance.

Chronic pain is a tricky diagnosis in terms of finding the right medication combination that will work, but will not lead to overmedication.  Working with your physician and seeing what is right for you is the only way to find an effective, realistic pain management treatment.  If you would like more information about chronic pain as it relates to your personal injury claim, contact our Altoona, Pennsylvania, law firm by calling 814-946-4100.

Attorney Doug Stoehr is a personal injury lawyer practicing in the western and central Pennsylvania region.  For more information on his firm, please call his office at 814-946-4100.

Facebook Undermines PA Woman's Personal Injury Lawsuit

Sometimes, what you post on social media can really influence the validity of your legal claim.  Recently, a Pennsylvania woman discovered this fact when she went to pursue a lawsuit against doctors whom she felt misdiagnosed her.  According to the report, published by, the Pennsylvania Superior Court recently ruled that the woman failed to sue doctors within the two-year statute of limitations for such cases.  The woman's original argument was that physicians misdiagnosed her Lyme disease as multiple sclerosis. 

  According to the article, the woman "had argued she didn't know about her Lyme disease until she tested positive for it in 2010, nine years after she first developed symptoms. She argued the statute of limitations didn't start until her diagnosis." However, Facebook evidence brought into the case showed that the woman had been telling people for many years that she thought she had Lyme disease, which the court felt lent less credence to her case. 

If you are pursuing a personal injury claim, you should be careful about what you choose to post on social media sites.  Even if you are significantly injured, defense attorneys might try to twist what you write or update to compile a case against you. One picture or post, taken out of context, may cost you a significant amount of money in a personal injury case.  Attorney Doug Stoehr is a personal injury attorney serving western and central Pennsylvania. Please call his office for your free initial consultation at 814-946-4100.

Holiday Driving Can Be Dangerous!

We're not out of the danger zone for holiday accidents yet! Please be safe, responsible, and alert when traveling between Christmas and New Year's Eve.

Remember that our law office is available to take your calls at 814-946-4100 to provide legal guidance involving any car accident concerns you may have! Our law office is skilled in handling car, bicycle, truck, and pedestrian accidents. This is also true for those people who have suffered injuries from a car accident due to other's distracted or fatigued driving.

To read more about holiday accidents and statistics, please click this article:

Protect Yourself From Defective Products

Defective products are unfortunately a common source of lawsuits in Pennsylvania and across the rest of the United States. This phenomenon is especially important to keep in mind as the holiday seasons approaches and you are purchasing gifts for friends, family, and other loved ones.  

As consumers, we must always be on alert for defective products. Here are some tips to prevent you and your loved ones from falling victim to product liability:

  • Research products before you buy them
  • Beware of low-cost products - you get what you pay for
  • Purchase products from companies with an established reputation
  • Know your product's warranty and guarantees 

Attorney Doug Stoehr is a personal injury lawyer serving Blair and the seven surrounding counties in central Pennsylvania.  He takes cases for product liability.  For more information on his Altoona, PA area firm, please call his office at 814-946-4100 or browse his website at

Understanding Traumatic Brain Injuries

How much do you really know about traumatic brain injuries?  Although this injury has made many headlines in the news in the past few years, the cause, symptoms, and treatments remain a mystery to many.  Many websites have compiled information about traumatic brain injuries to help educate the general public.  Of these websites is the Model Systems Knowledge Translation Center (MSKTC), which has myriad information relating to traumatic brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, and burn injuries. For those who may want to educate themselves more on the causes, signs, and treatment of traumatic brain injuries, their website may be a good place to begin.  Click here for the direct link to their TBI page.

If you have recently been in a car crash, it is important to closely monitor your body's response to injury.  This is especially true if you suspect that you have sustained a significant head injury.  If your car accident was due to the fault of another, it may also be time to seek legal action.   If you or a loved one has recently been in a car accident due to the fault of another, please contact Altoona, PA area personal injury attorney Doug Stoehr to set up an initial, free consultation.  His law office can be reached by calling his firm at 814-946-4100.

Dog Bites in PA

Recently, pit bulls have been receiving a lot of negative attention due to the perceived danger of the breed.  Whether you agree or disagree with this danger, the truth of the matter is that any type of dog breed can be harmful under the wrong circumstances. 

If you or a loved one have been attacked or bitten by a dog, you as a victim have rights. Many people do not know their rights and therefore fail to go after the compensation they deserve.  Dog bite laws can be confusing and may vary from state to state. Here is what you need to know about dog bite laws in Pennsylvania:

  • Legal liability must be proven in order to receive compensation from an attack.  This means that a victim must prove that the dog owner was being negligent in order for the owner to be held responsible for the attack.
  • Landlords may be held liable for injuries by a dog their tenant owns/takes care of if he/she is aware that the dog is a danger and fails to take action to remove the pet from the premise.
  • If a dog is deemed "dangerous" different laws and penalties may apply. A dangerous dog is one that has a previous record of attack or has attacked without provocation or both. 

Attorney Doug Stoehr is a personal injury lawyer serving Blair and the seven surrounding counties in central Pennsylvania.  He takes cases for victims of dog bites and other types of animal attacks. For more information on his Altoona, PA area firm, please call his office at 814-946-4100.

Ways to Lighten the Financial Load For Elderly Relatives

A recent article by spoke about ways to keep loved ones out of nursing homes. Many families who would like to receive help for their relatives are financially strained and cannot afford a nursing home.  For these families, the care of a loved one can cause undue stress and tension. addressed this issue by offering many tips on creative financial ways to help take care of elderly relatives or friends. According to the article, some of the tips include:

  • Moving in with someone else who can take care of your relative
  • Split caregiving between family and a paid neighbor
  • Moving to an area with a cheaper cost-of-living to be able to hire a caregiver
  • Consider utilizing adult daycare or companion care
  • Use community resources that provide in-home care, such as responsible students or church groups
  • Look into potential programs that your relative might be eligible for, such as various Veteran's Affairs benefits
  • Research assisted living facilities as well
  • Look into Medicaid or PACE benefits

Attorney Doug Stoehr is a personal injury lawyer serving western and central Pennsylvania.  He takes cases for older Pennsylvanians who have been abused or neglected.  For more information on his Altoona, PA area practice, please call his office at 814-946-4100.  Attorney Stoehr takes cases in Blair and the seven surrounding counties.

Winter Sports Injuries

Being from Western Pennsylvania, it's hard not to enjoy the fall, but with the changing of the seasons we know that winter is now upon us.  For many of us, this winter will include a trip to one of the three ski resorts that serve our area.  Ski resorts can be a great place to cut loose with family and friends, but unfortunately sometimes those fun times end prematurely when you or a family member is injured.  At the law firm of Attorney Douglas V.Stoehr, we have experience in handling injuries related to skiing, snowboarding, and snow tubing accidents.  Sometimes these injuries can be very serious and life-altering.  If you have been injured in a winter sport activity please contact us to discuss the possibility of a personal injury claim. 

The most common causes of skiing and snowboarding injuries include:

  • Collisions with other skiers or snowboarders
  • Falls or collision with objects such as trees, fences, barriers or signs
  • Chair lift or tow line accidents
  • Accidents due to inadequate instruction from a skiing or snowboarding instructor,
  • Accidents due to skiing or snowboarding equipment failure. 

Your personal injury lawsuit will be based on the legal theory of negligence, and can be quite complex.  Furthermore, there is a Pennsylvania Statute that generally affords a defense to these types of claims.  Therefore, if you get hurt a ski resort, contact us.  We will investigate the facts and analyze the law, and will give you an opinion as to whether you have a claim.  Contact Attorney Stoehr at (814) 946-4100 for more information! 

Girl Livestreams On Facebook While Driving, Crashes Car

Unfortunately, our state just received another sobering reminder of what can happen if you engage in distracted driving.  According to news reports, a teenager was live-streaming herself on Facebook while driving. Right after she started streaming, she was hit by a tractor-trailer that killed both her and her passenger.  The video was taken off the victim's  Facebook page and will be used in the state police investigation. 

We cannot stress to you enough how important it is to remain safe and alert while driving, especially during periods of increased motor activity like Christmas. Motor vehicle accidents, bicycle accidents, and pedestrian accidents can be easily prevented with a few simple, common-sense tips, such as not driving while fatigued or distracted, along with wearing your seatbelt. Attorney Douglas V. Stoehr works with clients who have been injured in motor vehicle, pedestrian, and bicycle accidents. If you feel that you have been wrongly hurt in an accident, please contact our office for a free consultation. Safe driving!

Taking Care On Winter Sidewalks

In preparation for the winter season and in an effort to keep homeowners and business owners safe, OSHA recently posted an article about how to reduce your risk for premises liability, both home and workplace, this winter season.  Here are some of their tips:

  • Check for water leaks inside and outside your home and/or office building (if you are a business owner).  Water leads to ice, which can lead to increased slip-and-fall accidents.  
  • Buy "caution" signs to remind others to be alert when traveling on walkways and entrances/exits to your buildings.  Rugs and carpets that can catch outside debris will also likely reduce your changes of someone falling on your floors.    
  • Clean up promptly when people bring in ice and snow into your home or building.  Ice and snow melt, which causes pools of water that may lead people to slip as well.  
  • Obviously, remember to clean up all snow and ice outside of your building and home promptly and thoroughly.  

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.

Thanks to OSHA for the original news bulletin! Their article can be found here:

Do you know Pennsylvania's snowmobiling laws?

If you are interested in using a snowmobile in Pennsylvania this summer, there are some rules and regulations that you need to know before you begin! 

For example, did you know that it is illegal to operate or be a passenger a snowmobile without wearing a properly fitted helmet? Also, no children aged 10-16 can operate a snowmobile except on family land.  This case is only changed if the child has taken a state-approved safety course and has received a certificate.

Also, many people may not realize that all snowmobiles that require general registration all need liability insurance coverage.  Proof of this coverage needs to be carried by the snowmobile operator.  If you fail to register your snowmobile and/or fail to obtain liability coverage, you may be fined up to $300.  There are also very specific regulations in Pennsylvania regarding brake systems, mufflers, sound levels, and visibility equipment.  So, the bottom line is: enjoy your snowmobile, but make sure to follow the state laws!

As fun and enjoyable as snowmobiling can be, all-terrain and off-road vehicles such as ATVs, dirt bikes, and snowmobiles are a leading cause of serious injury among Pennsylvanians, especially among our state's youth.   Attorney Doug Stoehr of Altoona, PA handles cases involving injury as a result of accidents involving off-road vehicles.  For more information about Attorney Doug Stoehr and his Blair county area practice, please call his law firm at 814-946-4100.

For more information about Pennsylvania's snowmobiling laws, please visit the original PDF handout here:

Holiday Home Safety

Are you keeping safe as your decorate your home this Christmas?  Follow a few of these simple tips, courtesy of to keep your family and visitors safe during this holiday season!

  • Always remember to turn off your holiday lights when you're leaving your house or going to bed! You don't want to start a fire or an electrical shortage.  Outdoor timers work great for this! 
  • Make sure to buy a freshly cut tree, since they are less likely to catch fire.  Keep it well watered and away from candles.  
  • Don't connect multiple extension cords together, and make sure you're using plastic clips or tape when hanging exterior lights.  
  • Don't use your gas fireplace if the glass panel isn't complete and in place.  Otherwise, you could put yourself at serious risk for a gas leak. 

In talking about holidays and parties, it is also important to think about home safety in the context of premises liability.   It is important to remember that, as hosts, you are responsible for what your guests ingest at your party as well as the safety and security of your home.  If a guest injures his or herself at your home due to unsafe conditions, you could be held liable. This includes areas such as maintaining your sidewalks in good working order, keeping your home and exterior well lit so people can see where they're walking, and making sure your guests don't drink too much alcohol and drive home. You could face very serious legal ramifications later on if accident, injury, or police involvement occurs.  Be smart when both hosting and attending a party.

Attorney Doug Stoehr is a personal injury lawyer serving western and central Pennsylvania.  For more information on his firm or to talk about your potential legal claim, please call his office at 814-946-4100.