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Personal Injury Lawyers

It is important to know your rights if you have been hurt in an accident. The Smith Law Center is a personal injury firm dedicated to helping those who have been harmed due to the negligent acts of another. We understand how serious injuries impact your life.

Accident victims can incur financial hardships, relationships may be strained, and painful recoveries are often taxing emotionally and physically. If an injury victim sustains catastrophic damage, like losing a limb or becoming permanently paralyzed, coping with a substantial life change can be overwhelming.

If you or a loved one have been hurt in an accident because of someone’s careless act, our personal injury lawyers are here to help. We will work tirelessly to secure the compensation you deserve. Contact the Smith Law Center today and schedule a free evaluation of your case by clicking here or calling (757) 244-7000.


9 Steps in a Personal Injury Lawsuit

Download a copy of the “9 Steps In a Personal Injury Lawsuit” checklist here.

What is Personal Injury Law?

Under personal injury law, or tort law, a person who has suffered bodily damage has the right to file a civil suit against the party responsible for monetary compensation. In some cases, multiple parties may be held liable.

According to the Code of Virginia, a “personal action for injury to person or property” may be filed against a person or entity for negligence or intentional acts.

What is a Personal Injury Lawyer?

A personal injury lawyer protects the rights of those hurt by negligence. A civil action is filed to recover damages for the plaintiff, or injured party. Damages are financial compensation.

An experienced attorney can help you recover damages if you are injured in a situation involving:

  • Accidents: An accident refers to a set of circumstances where an individual, group, or company causes harm to another person by acting in a careless manner. Accidents typically involve rear-end accidents, truck driver fatigue accidents, school bus accidents, medical malpractice errors, and other incidents.
  • Defective products: Manufacturers are responsible for producing safe products for consumers. Products can cause injuries when they are defective, faulty, or otherwise unreasonably dangerous. Defective product civil actions are referred to as product liability. Product liability covers a wide range of issues, including injuries from faulty tires, 3M earplugs, household products, talcum powder, Takata airbags, and weed killers and pesticides.
  • Intentional acts: Intentional acts cover incidents of deliberate harm. Violent crimes are prosecuted in criminal state or federal court. However, victims or family members of victims can pursue civil action in cases involving sexual assault, murder, assault and battery, and other acts.

A man with a cast on his leg sits on the couch researching on a laptop

What Damages Can a Personal Injury Attorney Help Me Recover?

One of the most frequently asked questions during an initial consultation is, “What damages can I recover?” Damages consist of tangible and intangible harm resulting from negligent or intentional acts. Tangible Damages Tangible damages are relatively easy to quantify and typically include:

  • Compensation for medical expenses: Depending on the severity of your injuries, the medical bills and future medical costs can add up to substantial amounts. A personal injury attorney may be able to recover:
    • The cost of the ambulance ride
    • Surgery expenses
    • Hospital stay
    • Physical and occupational therapy
    • Home health care
    • Future medical needs, like continuing treatment for permanent injuries
  • Lost income when you are unable to work: When you suffer extensive injuries and cannot return to work for an extended amount of time, the financial strain can be overwhelming. According to the study, Financial Hardship After Traumatic Injury, 1 in 8 households with a seriously injured family member will experience catastrophic medical expenses resulting in an excessive financial burden.
  • Property damage: In many cases, especially motor vehicle collisions, property is damaged. A personal injury lawyer may recover damage to your car, bicycle, house, or any other property damaged during the accident.

Intangible Damages

However, intangible damages are much more difficult to translate into a monetary number. How can a reasonably healthy person understand chronic pain after a serious car accident or PTSD after a catastrophic trucking accident?

The success of your personal injury claim rests on the ability of your attorney to present your pain, suffering, and emotional distress in a manner that an otherwise healthy person can understand.

Intangible damages include:

  • Pain and suffering damages: Serious injuries take a significant amount of time to heal. Often, the road to recovery is filled with painful medical treatments and therapies. When placing a monetary value on pain and suffering, a personal injury lawyer will consider:
    • The physical pain caused by the accident itself
    • The physical pain and discomfort experienced while recuperating, including physical and occupational therapy, the removal of screws and staples, and any difficulty participating in day-to-day activities
    • Mental anguish, anxiety, sleeplessness, and other psychological effects often cause an accident victim to suffer. The mental anguish under pain and suffering damages differs from the damage of emotional distress in its severity.
  • Emotional distress: Emotional distress is marked by its debilitating mental anguish. Emotional pain is difficult to prove and usually requires a clinical diagnosis of depression, anxiety disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, or other severe mental consequences.
  • Loss of enjoyment of life: Loss of enjoyment of life damages refers to the diminished ability of an injured person to participate in the activities and pleasures they formerly enjoyed. For example, suppose an athlete becomes paralyzed from the waist down. The athlete’s inability to compete in sports they did before would be considered when calculating the loss of enjoyment of life.
  • Loss of companionship or consortium: The loss of companionship or consortium is a delicate subject with profound long-term effects. When a person is injured in such a way that they can no longer provide the same companionship to their spouse or partner as before, it is considered a loss of consortium. Typically, this damage is used in cases of paraplegia or permanent brain damage.
  • Possible punitive damages: Punitive damages are awarded as a way to punish a negligent party. They are not calculated by the injuries suffered by the plaintiff but act as a deterrent for others to act in a similar way. In cases of drunk drivers, punitive damages are often awarded as a deterrent for others to drink and drive.

Construction worker sits on the ground clutching ankle in pain after an accident

What Types of Personal Injury Claims Do We Handle?

At Smith Law Center, our personal injury lawyers have been helping Virginia’s injured for over 70 years. In our vast experience, we have provided superior representation in cases involving:

Smith Law Center’s personal injury lawyers are not limited to the above list. If you or someone you know has suffered any harm from the negligent or intentional acts of another, call our personal injury attorneys today. In some cases, an accident victim may tragically succumb to their injuries. If you have lost a loved one, our compassionate firm can help file a wrongful death lawsuit. There is no amount of monetary compensation that can ease your grief. However, filing a wrongful death claim can help give you closure by holding negligent parties responsible and give you the financial means to cover unforeseen expenses.

If you or someone you love has been injured due to the neglectful acts of another, you deserve justice. As Virginia’s largest personal injury firm, we have the skills and resources to fight for your rights.

What Are the Most Common Types of Personal Injuries?

When accident victims seek justice for the pain they experience, their bodily damage can range from serious injuries to catastrophic and life-altering injuries. Our personal injury attorneys have helped those suffering from:

Elderly woman in a neck brace gets a checkup at the doctor

How Can a Personal Injury Lawyer Prove Liability in My Case?

Proving liability in Virginia can be complex. While most states follow comparative negligence policy, where parties may share responsibility in an accident, Virginia is a contributory negligence state.

Contributory negligence does not allow for shared fault. Instead, if a person is even partially responsible for the accident, they are unable to recover any monetary compensation.

For instance, suppose you are riding a bike and come to a four-way stop. A negligent driver speeds through the stop sign and crashes into you. If you failed to come to a complete stop and simply slowed down or “rolled” through the stop sign, you would be found partially responsible and unable to seek any damages. In Virginia, bicyclists are not permitted to yield and must come to a complete halt at all stop signs. However, if you follow all the rules of the road and the other driver is found to be 100% responsible, you may pursue civil action.

Your personal injury attorney must establish four elements to prove that negligence:

  • A duty of care was owed
  • That duty was breached, or broken
  • A causal link between the breach of duty and your injuries
  • That damages have been incurred

Our personal injury lawyers will fight to recover all damages in your accident. Call the Smith Law Center today and discuss your case with one of our knowledgeable attorneys.

Why Should I Choose Smith Law Center for My Personal Injury Case?

When you need a personal injury lawyer, turn to Smith Law Center. Founded in 1949, our dedicated staff has extensive experience helping injury victims. We have a long track record of success and have recovered over a billion dollars in settlements and verdicts for our clients. Our personal injury lawyers provide clients with:

  • Aggressive advocacy
  • Caring and compassionate representation
  • Responsive communication

If you or someone you love has been injured due to the neglectful acts of another, you deserve justice. As Virginia’s largest personal injury firm, we have the skills and resources to fight for your rights. Contact the Smith Law Center today and recover the damages you need to move on today. Schedule a free consultation of your case by clicking here or calling (757) 244-7000.

Personal Injury Law FAQs

What is the filing deadline for a personal injury lawsuit?

An accident victim generally has two years to file a personal injury claim against a negligent party. According to Virginia’s statute of limitations, the two-year window begins on the date of the accident. It is imperative to seek the counsel of an experienced personal injury lawyer as soon as possible to discuss your options.

What are common personal injury law issues?

Some of the most common personal injury law issues involve liability and quantifying nonphysical damages. Liability can be challenging under Virginia’s contributory negligence laws. In order to recover financial compensation, you cannot bear any fault in your accident.

Quantifying nonphysical, or intangible, damages like pain and suffering is also difficult. Often, personal injury lawyers must rely heavily on their persuasive skills to present a victim’s pain in a relatable way.

What is a personal injury settlement?

A personal injury settlement refers to the compensation recovered outside of trial. In most cases, at-fault parties have insurance companies to cover accidents. For example, doctors have medical malpractice insurance, and motorists carry car insurance. An insurance company will typically settle a personal injury claim to keep costs low.

What do personal injury lawyers do?

A personal injury lawyer will:

  • Investigate your claim
  • Gather critical evidence
  • Negotiate with the insurance company on your behalf
  • Send demand letters, if necessary
  • Prepare pleadings, filings, and all other paperwork
  • Represent clients at trial if unable to settle for fair compensation

Personal injury attorneys fight for the rights of injured parties to secure financial compensation.

Call the Smith Law Center today and schedule a free evaluation of your case by clicking here or calling (757) 244-7000.

Client Testimonials

Read what our former clients are saying about their experience with us and the quality of our services:

“Everyone I came into contact with at Smith Law Center was not only friendly , but also professional. Mr. Gill is an AMAZING attorney, and very professional. He made sure I understood everything that was happening during the entire process. He is patient, kind, and easy to talk to. I would highly recommend the Smith Law Center.”
-L. Harmon

 

“David Holt did an excellent job dealing with a largely uncooperative insurance adjuster. He explored all avenues of recovery, their fees were fair and, once settled, payment was prompt. Five stars all the way.”

-M. Sim

 

“The attorneys and staff are great to work with. They care not only about a successful recovery, but ensuring their clients know what options are available for protecting the recovery long-term.”
-A. Hook

NOTEWORTHY CASES

At the Smith Law Center, we take pride in the outstanding results we achieve for our clients. Here are a few notable examples of the results we’ve obtained:


Awarded: $12,264,302.00 – Largest Slip & Fall Verdict in VA history

Summary: Our team obtained a record verdict in a case for mild traumatic brain injury from a slip and fall. This was the largest slip and fall verdict in Virginia history at the time.


Awarded: $60,264,823.00 Verdict in Mild Head Injury

Summary: We obtained a jury award for over $60 million on behalf of a Williamsburg man who was injured when a Norfolk Southern train derailed and sent two cars careening into the RaceTrac service center he managed.


Awarded: $10,000,000.00 for a Man’s Mild Traumatic Brain Injury From a Building Crash

Summary: A company paid our client $10 million for a mild traumatic brain injury he sustained as a result of a building crash.

NOTEWORTHY CASES

At the Smith Law Center, we take pride in the outstanding results we achieve for our clients. Here are a few notable examples of the results we’ve obtained:


Awarded: $12,264,302.00 – Largest Slip & Fall Verdict in VA history

Summary: Our team obtained a record verdict in a case for mild traumatic brain injury from a slip and fall. This was the largest slip and fall verdict in Virginia history at the time.


Awarded: $60,264,823.00 Verdict in Mild Head Injury

Summary: We obtained a jury award for over $60 million on behalf of a Williamsburg man who was injured when a Norfolk Southern train derailed and sent two cars careening into the RaceTrac service center he managed.


Awarded: $10,000,000.00 for a Man’s Mild Traumatic Brain Injury From a Building Crash

Summary: A company paid our client $10 million for a mild traumatic brain injury he sustained as a result of a building crash.

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Best Law firms
Best lawyers
American Board of Trial Advocates
Brain Injury Association
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DELIVERING RESULTS SINCE 1949

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There are absolutely no out-of-pocket fees for filing a claim.

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SPEAK TO US NOW FOR FREE

Your legal questions answered, completely free of charge.

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IF WE DON’T WIN, YOU DON’T PAY

There are absolutely no out-of-pocket fees for filing a claim.

If you or a relative had a severe reaction to military housing mold, it might be time to talk with a toxic mold lawyer. Mold is everywhere, and can be dangerous. Researchers have linked mold to serious respiratory illnesses in some individuals.

Smith Law Center may be able to help if a property owner failed to keep you safe from mold in your military housing. We are one of Virginia’s oldest and most successful firms. We know how to hold negligent property owners responsible, especially when the military is involved.

Call us at (757) 244-700 or contact us online to set up a free consultation. There’s no fee for learning more about Virginia mold laws, your rights, and your legal options.

Mold in Military Housing

Black mold in military housing became widely known when Reuters published an investigation in 2018. Since then, the Department of Defense and the housing providers were supposed to take steps to improve the situation.

Unfortunately, a 2020 audit by the DoD Office of Inspector General found many issues, including the need for mold remediation, still persist.

Monetary Awards in Military Housing Toxic Mold Cases

If the property owner lets toxic mold run wild and continue to cause you harm, talk with our toxic mold attorneys about filing a lawsuit.

You may receive financial compensation for:

Service members and their families do not receive different types of damages than civilians. These are civil lawsuits in traditional courts of law.

Military Housing Mold Toxicity Symptoms

The Institute of Medicine discovered there was evidence connecting exposure to indoor mold with:

  • Upper respiratory tract symptoms;
  • Coughing;
  • Wheezing;
  • Asthma symptoms in individuals with asthma; and
  • Hypersensitivity pneumonitis in individuals with weak immune systems.

There is also limited evidence that mold causes respiratory illnesses in healthy children or causes people to develop asthma.

Understanding Exposure to Toxic Mold in Military Housing

The topic of toxic mold is complicated. This Is in part because the term “toxic mold” isn’t accurate. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) explains mold isn’t toxic or poisonous. However, some molds are toxigenic, which means they produce toxins called mycotoxins.

Mold is common in military housing because it’ll grow anywhere there’s moisture. That includes on and inside walls, carpet, upholstery, wallpaper, and heating and air conditioning systems. This is especially pronounced in humid conditions such as those present in Virginia.

Some people have no difficulties around mold, even large infestations in their homes. Other individuals are sensitive to molds, including those that produce mycotoxins. Someone can have a severe reaction when exposed to a large amount of mold indoors.

People may be more likely to experience mold toxicity symptoms if they have:

  • Allergies,
  • An underlying lung disease,
  • Immune suppression,
  • Chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder,
  • Asthma, or
  • Another chronic respiratory disease.

Common Types of Military Housing Mold

When you’re trying to learn more from the CDC and other resources, you’ll see the word “fungus” a lot. Mold is a type of fungus, which is something that exists all around us. Fungi are living organisms different from animals, plants, and bacteria. There are over 200,000 types of fungi and over 100,000 types of molds.

If you discovered mold in your military housing, it could be Cladosporium, Penicillium, Stachybotrys chartarum, Aspergillus, or many other types. Stachybotrys is what everyone knows as black mold. Aspergillus is a common indoor fungus, which releases mycotoxins and can cause illness. Your symptoms may resemble common allergy or asthma symptoms.

Who is Liable for Military Housing Mold?

Since 1996, most military housing has come under the management of private companies:

  • Belfour Beatty Communities: Fort Eustis and Fort Story/li>
  • Lincoln Military Housing: Dahlgren, Little Creek, Naval Station Norfolk, Northwest Annex, Oceana, Portsmouth, Quantico, and Yorktown/li>
  • Hunt Military Communities: Fort Lee and Langley AFB

Outside of Virginia, Lendlease and Corvias Military Living are two more housing providers. Together, these five companies formed the Military Housing Association.

Military families living in on-base housing must take their complaints to their private management company — not the military. The company is responsible for providing habitable conditions and making repairs, including mold remediation.

If you’re unsure about your rights, review your state law and local ordinances about mold. In general, it’s the landlord’s responsibility to provide a habitable unit, which means it has to be safe to live in. A unit isn’t safe if it’s causing a tenant health issues due to mold.

The Virginia Residential Landlord and Tenant Act requires landlords to disclose if there’s mold in the written report of the move-in inspection. If a tenant discovers visible mold in the unit, then the Act requires the landlord to remove the mold and relocate the tenant until it’s gone at no additional cost to the tenant.

Unfortunately, many families find their housing providers aren’t receptive to complaints. Attorney Stephen M. Smith has handled many mold lawsuits against military housing providers who fail to abide by their lease terms and the law when it comes to mold remediation and other hazards.

Other Hazards in Military Housing

Many service members and their families deal with uncomfortable, if not hazardous, conditions in privatized military housing, including:

Lead Paint: Lead-based paint can cause headaches, nausea, fatigue, irritability, behavioral problems, learning disabilities, seizures, organ damage, and in extreme cases, death.

Asbestos: Exposure to asbestos harms a person’s lungs, and can lead to lung fibrosis (scarring), lung cancer, and mesothelioma.

Radon: Radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer after smoking. It naturally forms underground, however cracks and gaps in buildings lead to over-exposure indoors.

Poor Water Quality: Dozens of military sites have water with detectable levels of harmful chemicals.

Other issues involve rodent or insect infestations, pesticides, and faulty electrical wiring.

What Happens When a Lot of People Get Sick?

Sometimes mold exposure impacts a single individual or family. However, when the mold spreads throughout military housing, it can impact hundreds or thousands of people.

Occasionally, a large enough group of people are injured to allow for a class action or mass tort lawsuit. A class action lawsuit is one where a class representative acts as the plaintiff on behalf of the group of hurt individuals. Not every victim participates in the lawsuit. There are rules about when a group is big and similar enough to create a class action.

Mass tort lawsuits are different. When there are fewer plaintiffs who have their own set of circumstances, each person files a lawsuit. For efficiency’s sake, one or a couple of law firms may represent most plaintiffs, and the lawsuits are consolidated in a federal court.

Call the Military Housing Mold Lawyers at Smith Law Center for Help Right Away

Mold cases come about in a few ways. You or a loved one may start getting sick, and after weeks or months of struggling to find answers, you finally realize your military housing has a mold infestation. In other cases, you struggle with visible mold and then become ill.

Once you connect the illness with the mold, it’s time to talk with a toxic mold lawyer. Reaching out to an attorney early helps you build a strong compensation claim. We know how to collect evidence, identify who is liable, and craft a successful argument for a settlement or court award.

Attorney Stephen M. Smith has decades of experience handling injury claims and has been internationally recognized for his work. He has litigated cases involving catastrophic injuries and complex legal and scientific issues. In 2019, he was inducted into the Virginia Lawyers Hall of Fame.

You’re in good hands when you come to Smith Law Center for help. Reach out online or call (757) 244-7000 to schedule your 100% free consultation.

Military Housing Mold Lawsuits: FAQs

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DELIVERING RESULTS SINCE 1949

We are one of Virginia’s largest and most successful law firms.

WE WANT TO HEAR FROM YOU - Tablet View

WE WANT TO HEAR FROM YOU


Use the simple form below to send a message directly to our lawyers. We will respond within 1 hour or less during business hours.
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