The Answers You Need for the Questions You’re Forced to Ask

One of the worst aspects of pursuing a case—whether you’re fighting for injury compensation or trying to settle a divorce—is not knowing what to expect. Before you get yourself knee deep in the details of your case allow us to answer some of your questions first. We’ll help you be more fully prepared and more confident as you move forward.

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  • How is my crash case different if I was hit by a commercial truck?

    While an accident with any commercial vehicle can complicate your case, a commercial semi truck crash can involve multiple at-fault parties, violations of government regulations, and teams of insurance attorneys working to devalue your case. If you were hurt in a semi crash, it is important to speak with an experienced truck accident attorney about your personal injury case. Rhode Island Truck Accident Lawyer Kirshenbaum & Kirshenbaum

    Definition of a Commercial Truck

    The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) defines a Commercial Motor Vehicle (CMV) as any vehicle or combination of vehicles used to transport goods or passengers for business purposes. This can include tractor trailers, freight trucks, buses, tanker trucks, and delivery vehicles.

    Federal laws sets forth certain requirements and safety regulations for operators of commercial trucks. The truck involved in your accident will likely be subject to these laws if it:

    • Has a gross vehicle weight rating of 26,001 or more pounds, OR
    • Has a gross combination weight rating of 26,001 or more pounds (including a towed unit with a gross vehicle weight rating of over 10,000 pounds), OR
    • Is used for the purpose of (or is designed to) transport 16 or more passengers including a driver, OR
    • Is used to carry materials that qualify as hazardous under the Hazardous Materials Transportation Act

    An Attorney Can Fight for Your Rights After a Truck Accident

    Vehicles that are operated by large-scale companies are required to have considerable insurance coverage under a commercial policy. Commercial auto insurance policies usually have much higher coverage limits than insurance for passenger vehicles. However, even when a trucking company realizes it is at fault and has the ability to pay for injuries, the company often chooses to fight the claim instead of pay out.

    When trucking companies and their agents fight to avoid liability for accidents, the attorneys Kirshenbaum & Kirshenbaum can bring them to justice. We work to get you maximum compensation for your injuries, and we do not charge for our services until your claim is resolved. 

    Have You Been Involved In A Rhode Island Truck Accident?

    If you've been hurt in a truck accident you need to speak to an experienced truck accident lawyer as soon as possible. Please contact us online or call our Cranston office directly at 401.946.3200 to schedule your free consultation. We help truck accident victims in Providence, Warwick and all areas of Rhode Island.

     

  • What is a commercial vehicle?

    While the term “commercial vehicle” is most commonly associated with semi trucks, it can apply to any vehicle that is being used for commercial purposes. An accident with a commercial vehicle can be much more complicated than a crash with a passenger car, so it is vital that you contact an experienced truck accident attorney to handle these kinds of personal injury cases. Commercial Vehicle Accident Lawyer Rhode Island Kirshenbaum & Kirshenbaum

    How an Accident With a Commercial Vehicle Affects Your Injury Claim

    The biggest difference between regular crash cases and a commercial vehicle accident is the amount of insurance available to cover your costs. Vehicles that are owned by a business or used for business purposes are typically covered under a commercial liability insurance policy, which has much higher limits than passenger vehicle policies.

    When an accident involves a commercial vehicle, you may need to pursue a claim against:

    The driver’s employer.

    Operators of semi trucks, school buses, and certain passenger vehicles are required to maintain a commercial driver’s license (CDL). If the employer did not ensure that its employee had proper licensing or its driver did not follow regulations, the trucking company’s insurance carrier could be liable for your injury costs.

    The loading company.

    In many cases, the driver of a tractor-trailer and the company that loads cargo into the truck are two separate entities. If the accident was caused by improper loading (such as carrying too much cargo or failure to secure the load), the loading company’s insurer may be liable for injuries.

    The manufacturer of the vehicle.

    Delivery vans and box trucks that are manufactured improperly can cause severe injuries on the road. The manufacturer of the vehicle or the company that made defective auto components may be held accountable when their negligence causes harm.

    The at-fault driver’s insurance company.

    People who drive a company car (such as a pickup truck for construction) or make extra money using their cars for passenger transport may not need a CDL to operate their vehicles. However, they may be required to carry extra insurance coverage in case they are involved in an accident.

    Trucking companies and their agents fight tenaciously to avoid liability for accidents, but the attorneys Kirshenbaum & Kirshenbaum can bring them to justice. We work to get you maximum compensation for your injuries, and we do not charge for our services until your claim is resolved. Contact us today via our online form to schedule your initial consultation with a lawyer.

    Have You Been Involved In A Rhode Island Truck Accident?

    If you've been hurt in a truck accident you need to speak to an experienced truck accident lawyer as soon as possible. Please contact us online or call our Cranston office directly at 401.946.3200 to schedule your free consultation. We help truck accident victims in Providence, Warwick and all areas of Rhode Island.

     

  • Why are young drivers likely to cause crashes?

    Any parent who has ever tried to purchase car insurance for a newly licensed child knows that teenagers have one of the highest crash rates of all drivers. As one of the most at-risk groups in the nation, teen drivers face a wide range of hazards that can cause road accidents—both inside and outside their vehicles. Cranston Rhode Island Car Accident Lawyers Kirshenbaum and Kirshenbaum

    Top 4 Reasons Teen Drivers Cause Car Accidents

    A federal study conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported some of the specific reasons why teen drivers continue to cause car accidents in Rhode Island and across the U.S.:

    Distractions.

    Cell phone use is by far the biggest threat to teen driver safety. Over half of high school students surveyed admitted to texting and driving at least once in the previous month, even in states where texting and driving is illegal.

    Underage drinking.

    Nearly 25% of teenagers in the study admitted to riding in a car with a driver who was drunk, while 8% of teens admitted to drinking and driving.

    Inexperience.

    Newly licensed teens lack the “drive time” of older drivers, making them less adept at handling common road hazards. A new driver may not know how to adjust speed during stop-and-go traffic, travel in bad weather, or take precautions for nighttime driving, increasing the risk of a crash.

    Peer pressure.

    Teenagers are naturally less able to understand and process personal risk, so it’s no surprise that 8% of teens claimed they rarely (or never) wear a seat belt. This failure to follow the rules may continue when it comes to other safety regulations such as carrying too many passengers in one car, speeding, or disobeying traffic laws in order to impress others.

    Have You Been Injured In A Car Accident?

    If you've been hurt in a car accident you need to speak to an experienced car accident lawyer as soon as possible. Please contact us online or call our Cranston office directly at 401.946.3200 to schedule your free consultation. We help accident victims in Providence, Warwick and all areas of Rhode Island.

     

  • Can I Lose My Job if I File a Workers’ Compensation Claim?

    It is against the law for an employer to fire an employee because that employee filed a claim for workers’ compensation benefits. It would be considered a retaliatory discharge if that were to happen. Unfortunately. the reality is that it would be difficult to prove that the termination was based upon retaliation.

    Fortunately, under RI laws, an employee who has sustained a compensable injury will have job protection for a period of one (1) year after the date of injury.To state is another way, an employee has a right to be reinstated to his or her former position if the employee is capable of returning to work within 1 year of the date he or she was injured. However, the criteria is that the employee must not be disabled in any way from performing his or her job duties.  In addition, the employee’s former position must still exit and be available. The employee must make a written demand for reinstatement. If the employee remains out of work for over 1 year, the employee no longer has a right to reinstatement. This does not always mean that the employee does not have a job to go back to; instead, it is up to the employer whether or not they want to take back the employee.

    Have You Been Injured On The Job In  Rhode Island?

    If you've been hurt at work you need to speak with an experienced workers' compensation lawyer as soon as possible. Please contact us online or call our Cranston office directly at 401.946.3200 to schedule your free consultation. We help work injury victims in Providence, Warwick and all areas of Rhode Island.

  • Should I file a wrongful death claim if a criminal case is pending?

    It is usually best to file a civil wrongful death claim even when the outcome of the criminal case has not yet been decided. There is only a limited window of time for survivors to file a lawsuit, and the sooner family members speak with a Rhode Island wrongful death attorney, the better their chances of recovering compensation. Wrongful death civil and criminal cases Kirshenbaum & Kirshenbaum

    Differences Between a Wrongful Death Claim and a Criminal Case

    A wrongful death is a special circumstance that can result in two separate legal actions: a claim in civil court and a case in criminal court. Criminal charges are brought by a government prosecutor and can result in imprisonment, fines, and other penalties. Civil claims, on the other hand, are filed by survivors whose lives have been affected by someone’s misconduct. If a civil claim is successful, the only reward for the survivors is financial compensation.

    There are some important differences in your civil case and a criminal case, including:

    Negligence is enough 

    While criminal actions need conclusive proof of intentional or reckless acts, a civil lawsuit only requires proof that an at-fault party’s negligent actions caused the death.

    Lower burden of proof 

    Federal law requires attorneys in a criminal case to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. However, the burden of proof in a civil case is much lower. In a wrongful death claim, you only need enough evidence to show that the at-fault party’s actions are the most probable cause of your loved one’s death.

    Potential for punitive damages

    In addition to economic damages in a wrongful death case, survivors may be able to collect punitive damages to punish the at-fault party.

    Has Your Loved One Died To The Negligence Of Others?

    If your loved one died to due the negligence of others you need to speak with an experienced wrongful death attorney as soon as possible. Please contact us online or call our Cranston office directly at 401.946.3200 to schedule your free consultation. We help families in Providence, Warwick and all areas of Rhode Island. 

     

  • Are there any advantages to a legal separation rather than divorce?

    A separation may be a good option for married couples who are considering divorce or who have problems that could potentially lead to divorce. In fact, couples who separate before beginning divorce proceedings often save time and money and increase their chances of an amicable divorceThe benefits of a legal separation Kirshenbaum & Kirshenbaum

    Benefits of a Legal Separation Before Divorce

    In general, a legal separation is a married couple’s conscious choice to live apart. Much like a divorce, legal separations require court petitions and can be granted on fault or no-fault grounds. However, separations are not permanent and only last a few months or a few years.

    Separation may be beneficial in many cases, including:

    Potential for reconciliation

    If you believe there is chance for reconciliation, you can use your time apart to think about what you want from your marriage and what you and your spouse can do to avoid a divorce in the future.

    Pre-divorce preparation

    A separation period can give you a preview of life after marriage and give you time to open new bank accounts and health insurance policies.

    Child benefits

    Divorce proceedings can be stressful for kids. A separation period can avoid undue stress on children or allow them to finish out the school year before the divorce process begins.

    Financial concerns 

    In Rhode Island, spouses are prohibited from selling, transferring, or concealing any individual property or marital assets during a separation. In addition to preventing retaliatory spending, a separation can give an unemployed spouse time to find a job and offer a real-time look at each spouse’s finances going forward.

    Religious concerns

    A separation can allow you to live apart from your spouse if your religion prevents you from getting a divorce.

    Do You Need To Speak To A Rhode Island Divorce Attorney?

    If you are considering a divorce you need to speak with an experienced Rhode Island divorce attorney as soon as possible. Please contact us online or call our Cranston office directly at 401.946.3200 to schedule your free consultation. We help divorce clients in Providence, Warwick and all areas of Rhode Island.

     

  • What Can I do If My Ex Is Not Following Our Custody Order?

    Often times you may find yourself in a position where you have gone to court and have successfully achieved a custody and or visitation order but that after Court your ex refuses to comply with the terms of the order. If that is the case, it is inadvisable to take the law in your own hands. Some parties feel that when the other side is violating the order that in response they can withhold child support, withhold visitation rights or take other self-made remedies. Do not retaliate and kind!

    If you find that your ex is not following a custody order, the best response would be to speak with your attorney, who will likely file a motion to adjudge the other parent in contempt or to seek other relief. If found in contempt, the court can issue new orders with various forms of relief, including modifications to the custody or visitation order that is being violated.

    Do You Need To Speak To A Rhode Island Family Law Attorney?

    If  you need to speak with an experienced Rhode Island divorce family law attorney  please contact us online or call our Cranston office directly at 401.946.3200 to schedule your free consultation. We help divorce clients in Providence, Warwick and all areas of Rhode Island.

  • At What Age Can My Children Decide Not To Follow Our Visitation Schedule?

    In Rhode Island, the preference of a child to visit with a parent is only one factor that the Court will consider when establishing a visitation schedule.  There is no set age when a child can decide not to visit with the other parent; when determining visitation, the Court will ultimately have to decide what is in the best interest of the child.

    While there is no set age for a child to decide not to visit with one parent or to change a visitation schedule, the Court may consider the child’ s preference.  In doing so the Court will consider the child’s age, maturity and reasons provided for wanting or not wanting to visit with a particular parent.

    Do You Need To Speak To A Rhode Island Family Law Attorney?

    If  you need to speak with an experienced Rhode Island divorce family law attorney  please contact us online or call our Cranston office directly at 401.946.3200 to schedule your free consultation. We help divorce clients in Providence, Warwick and all areas of Rhode Island.

  • Is there a good way to tell my spouse I want a divorce?

    If you’ve decided to end your marriage, it may seem that there’s never a right time to break the news to your spouse. You know the discussion will be fraught with emotion, and approaching it the wrong way could affect your future relationship with your spouse and children. While there may not be a perfect way to ask for a divorce, there are some things you can do to make the conversation go more smoothly. Rhode Island Divorce Attorney Kirshenbaum & Kirshenbaum

    How to Prepare for a Conversation About Divorce

    The best way to ask for a divorce will depend on the person you are asking. You know how your spouse will likely react to bad news, how they process information, and whether they would prefer a long or short conversation. Acknowledging their feelings and being respectful will set the tone for the separation and increase your chances of an amicable divorce

    Before you make a request for divorce, you should:

    Make a script.

    It is best to write down your thoughts before meeting with your spouse. The right language can help you avoid hurting your spouse without giving them control over the conversation.

    Pick an appropriate time and place.

    Do not ambush your spouse by asking for a divorce when they don’t have time to respond. Plan the conversation for when you both have plenty of time to speak and ask questions, and do it in a place where you and your spouse feel comfortable. Try to let your spouse know ahead of time that you need to talk with them.

    Prepare for an emotional reaction.

    It may have taken you many months of deliberation before you reached the conclusion to separate, so expecting your spouse to process their emotions in a few moments is unrealistic.

    Have a counter-argument ready.

    When faced with the prospect of divorce, some spouses will ask about counseling or separation in an attempt to work on the marriage. It is best to have reasons at the ready for why these options don’t work for you.

    Address expectations for the future.

    You may want to discuss a few logistical details such as who will live in the house and who will have physical custody of the children. While you should listen to your spouse’s opinions and agree to work together to find a solution, it is best not to make any promises about custody or property until you speak to an attorney.

    Do You Need To Speak To A Rhode Island Divorce Attorney?

    If you are considering a divorce you need to speak with an experienced Rhode Island divorce attorney as soon as possible. Please contact us online or call our Cranston office directly at 401.946.3200 to schedule your free consultation. We help divorce clients in Providence, Warwick and all areas of Rhode Island.

     

  • Will being intoxicated when I got hurt at work impact my workers’ comp claim?

    In most cases, a worker who is impaired by alcohol or a controlled substance at the time of injury will not be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits. However, there may be cases where claims involving alcohol or medication use can be unfairly denied. Workers' Comp Lawyer Rhode Island

    How Intoxication Affects a Workers’ Compensation Claim

    Rhode Island workers’ compensation law states, “No compensation shall be allowed for the injury or death of an employee… where it is proved that his or her injury or death resulted from his or her intoxication or unlawful use of controlled substances.” While it makes sense that employers would not want to cover the costs of an injury that was the employee’s fault, there are circumstances where impairment may be used to unfairly deny the claim.

    Your work injury may be covered depending on:

    The amount of alcohol in your system.

    Even if alcohol was detected in your system, it does not mean that you were impaired—or that the impairment led to your injury.

    Whether the employer provided the alcohol.

    If intoxication occurred with the permission or direction of the employer, such as at a mandatory work event, the injury may be covered.

    Whether you were impaired by prescription medications.

    If you were suffering from drowsiness, dizziness, or other side effects of a medication that you were legally prescribed, you likely still qualify for injury benefits.

    The type of injury you sustained.

    Intoxication may be a factor in sudden accidents but is less relevant in cases of occupational illness. For example, your alcohol habits have little bearing on whether you develop work-related breathing problems or a repetitive stress injury.

    Have You Been Injured On The Job In  Rhode Island?

    If you've been hurt at work you need to speak with an experienced workers' compensation lawyer as soon as possible. Please contact us online or call our Cranston office directly at 401.946.3200 to schedule your free consultation. We help work injury victims in Providence, Warwick and all areas of Rhode Island.