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  • NEW YORK, NYKI Legal and client‚Äč – Koutsoudakis & Iakovou Law Group, PLLC (d/b/a “KI Legal”), represented by Co-Founders Andreas Koutsoudakis and Michael Iakovou, and Liakas Law P.C., represented by Senior Partner Nicholas Liakas and Supervising Partner Scott A. Steinberg, hosted a press conference on Monday, May 20, 2024, announcing the filing of a lawsuit on behalf of four firefighters from Ladder Company 84 and Engine Company 168 – Lieutenant Bill Doody, Firefighter Michael Guidera, Firefighter Kwabena Brentuo, and Firefighter John Sarnes – who nearly lost their lives in a blaze on February 17, 2023. The four-alarm fire began at a single-family home on Shotwell Ave but ultimately spread to neighboring homes due to heavy winds. The closest firehouse, Ladder Company 167, was closed for annual medical exams as per FDNY policy. This left the responding firefighters short-handed and delayed the response. This FDNY policy includes periodic closures of firehouses for medical exams and training, which contributed to the severity of the situation. All four injured firefighters are seeking $20 million in damages and a change in policy.

    “As a native Staten Islander, when this matter was first brought to my attention, I felt a strong need to step in immediately. This could’ve been my house, my family, my neighborhood that was impacted. This story is innately close to home, so to realize that the firefighters in my community, and across the City of New York, are rushing into raging blazes, and that this type of situation could be prevented, is what is motivating our taking on this case. Real-life heroes don’t wear capes; they wear 50 pounds of gear and run into burning buildings. While people run away from danger, our firefighters run towards it to protect the public.” said KI Legal Personal Injury Co-Founder Andreas Koutsoudakis. “The City of New York should be implementing common sense policies to ensure that our bravest are protected, not implementing nonsensical policies that put them in harm’s way. The policy of closing firehouses for required physicals without replacements is a dangerous policy that increases the likelihood that our firefighters will be placed in harm’s way. Our clients suffered life-altering injuries as a result of this policy. We look forward to fighting vigorously in Court on their behalf so that they can be compensated for their injuries and to ensure that the same does not occur to any other firefighters.”

    The lawsuits, on behalf of the plaintiffs, have been filed in Richmond County Supreme Court. For further reference, the index numbers are: 151001/2024; 151002/2024; 151003/2024; and 151004/2024.

    KI Legal and Liakas Law Announce Filing of Lawsuit Against the City of New York on Behalf of Staten Island Firefighters
    Firm News,  Personal Injury
  • Property and liability insurance are important and often required in various real estate transactions. In a lease, for example, a landlord will make sure that there is an insurance provision with coverage adequate to protect its property. In a purchase and sale of real estate, purchasers will often want to make sure that a seller maintains its insurance coverage so that, if there is any damage to the property before closing, the property can be restored to its original state at the time the contract to purchase the property was signed, and the sale can proceed as planned. Alternatively, a seller may require a purchaser to obtain insurance coverage before the purchaser enters onto the seller’s property for the purchaser to perform its due diligence to ensure that, in the event the purchaser damages the property in any way, the damage can be adequately repaired.

    Why are insurance policies important?

    Insurance policies allow the policy holder, the individual or entity being insured, to shift its financial risk onto a third-party insurance company. By paying an insurance company a small premium, the insured can use the money that may have otherwise been tied up as a safety net for certain scenarios for other investments. For example, if a purchaser wants to enter onto a seller’s property to perform due diligence, the purchaser would be doing so at his own risk. If something were to go wrong and the purchaser would damage the property, the purchaser would be required to repair the property or reimburse the seller for whatever damage was caused. To protect itself in such a situation, and if there were no insurance companies, it would be prudent for the purchaser to stash an adequate sum of money just in case something goes wrong. With an insurance policy in place, the purchase can take the sum of money he would’ve kept as a security blanket and use it to enter a new business deal.

    Why do lenders require insurance policies?

    Another real estate transaction that involves insurance policies is mortgage loans. One of the requirements that a borrower needs to satisfy to obtain a mortgage loan is insurance coverage. A lender will require a borrower to obtain property insurance in an amount sufficient to cover the worth of the property that the lender will be placing a mortgage on so that, if the property is destroyed, the insurance company can make the lender whole by paying the lender the worth of the property. For the lender to be entitled to receive an insurance payout, if necessary, the lender must be named as an “additional insured.” What is an additional insured? An additional insured is a third-party beneficiary to an insurance policy. In the case outlined above, the borrower of the loan will pay for the insurance policy and have the insurance company add the lender as an additional insured to ensure the lender would be entitled to receive any paid-out insurance proceeds.

    Insurance clauses in real estate contracts are often heavily negotiated and hard to navigate. It is therefore important to make sure you have proper representation when negotiating your real estate contracts. For more information, or for help on your next real estate deal, reach out to the knowledgeable real estate attorneys at KI Legal by calling (212) 404-8644 or emailing info@kilegal.com.

    KI Legal focuses on guiding companies and businesses throughout the entire legal spectrum. KI Legal’s services generally fall under three broad-based practice group areas: Transactions, Litigation and General Counsel. Its extensive client base is primarily made up of real estate developers, managers, owners and operators, lending institutions, restaurant and hospitality groups, construction companies, investment funds, and asset management firms. KI Legal’s unwavering reputation for diligent and thoughtful representation has been established and sustained by its strong team of reputable attorneys and staff. For the latest updates, follow KI Legal on LinkedIn, Facebook, and Instagram. For more information, visit kilegal.com.

    Property and Liability Insurance in Real Estate Transactions
    Insurance Defense,  Premises Liability ,  Real Estate and Finance
  • In personal injury cases, it is important that you are familiar with the Jury Instructions that will be used to determine the outcome of a particular trial. What are jury instructions? Jury instructions are the guidelines given to a jury that outline the law and explain what factors are required for them to deliberate. A lawyer with a strong understanding of the jury instructions can and must use this knowledge to their advantage.

    Once it is known which claims you will be bringing against the defendant, it is then possible to familiarize yourself with which set of jury instructions the judge will likely hand to the jury. Once those are known, every action that you will take in your case can be taken framed around the language and requirements of the instructions. The language used in your initial lawsuit can echo the terminology of the instructions, and the documents that you seek during discovery can be chosen with the jury instructions’ requirements in mind, and so on; for example, if the jury instructions require that the defendant have knowledge of a particular defect in their premises, you can request an image of the defect in question existing in an evident nature. Additionally, the language used in questions asked during depositions and of witnesses at trial should track the instructions, illuminating how the facts of your case align with the elements in their instructions for the jury.

    Having an attorney that can capitalize on the knowledge of what is contained in each cause of action’s jury instructions can go a long way towards making a strong case to a jury. For help navigating the complex world of personal injury claims, contact KI Legal Personal Injury so you can sit down for a free consultation with our team of experienced attorneys. Call (212) 404-8605 or email michael@kilegal.com today.

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    *ATTORNEY ADVERTISING*

    *PRIOR RESULTS DO NOT GUARANTEE A SIMILAR OUTCOME*

    This information is the most up to date news available as of the date posted. Please be advised that any information posted on the KI Legal Blog or Social Channels is being supplied for informational purposes only and is subject to change at any time. For more information, and clarity surrounding your individual organization or current situation, contact a member of the KI Legal team.

    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    KI Legal Personal Injury fights for victims of a wide array of personal injury claims, from Motor Vehicle Accidents to Scaffolding and Ladder Falls to Slip/Trip & Falls, amongst others. By leveraging its multidisciplinary foundation and, with the help of its experienced litigators, KI Legal Personal Injury can fight for the results and compensation that victims deserve without pushing for premature settlements due to financial reasons. This financial paradigm shift swings the pendulum in our favor when it comes to negotiating with insurance carriers, inherently leading to better results for clients. For the latest updates.

    Jury Instructions 101
    Personal Injury
  • If you are considering bringing a personal injury or wrongful death lawsuit, it is important to understand the two basic elements of the lawsuit. These elements are (1) the facts of the case and (2) the laws that will control the outcome. To develop an in-depth understanding of the facts of your case, it is important to gather documentation regarding the extent of your injuries and to be sure about the identities of those involved in the accident. With that being said, this discussion will focus more on the law, providing a general overview of the common legal issues that arise in most personal injury cases.

    Identifying liable parties is one of the most important things that you can do when considering the viability of your personal injury suit and should be one of the first steps that you take when determining whether you have a claim. A liable person can either be someone who did something to cause your injury, or failed to do something that could have prevented your injury. It is important to note that businesses can be held liable in personal injury cases, not only people.

    Considering liable parties goes hand in hand with considering whether the liable person has insurance coverage and determining which party you believe you will best be able to recover damages from. Insurance coverage and the liability of parties can be difficult to determine, which is why it is important that you are guided by an expert with experience in this process.

    Other common legal issues will be discussed in following articles, including include jury instructions, potential causes of action, jurisdiction and venue, the statute of limitations, conflicts-of-law, joint and several liability, comparative fault, and causation.

    Our personal injury attorneys at KI Legal Personal Injury can help you make calculated decisions on who may be liable and what strategy may be best for you in pursuing recovery. For help maximizing the value of your claim and navigating the complex world of personal injury claims, contact our team and sit down for a free consultation. Call (212) 404-8605 or email michael@kilegal.com today.

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    *ATTORNEY ADVERTISING*

    *PRIOR RESULTS DO NOT GUARANTEE A SIMILAR OUTCOME*

    This information is the most up to date news available as of the date posted. Please be advised that any information posted on the KI Legal Blog or Social Channels is being supplied for informational purposes only and is subject to change at any time. For more information, and clarity surrounding your individual organization or current situation, contact a member of the KI Legal team.

    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    KI Legal Personal Injury fights for victims of a wide array of personal injury claims, from Motor Vehicle Accidents to Scaffolding and Ladder Falls to Slip/Trip & Falls, amongst others. By leveraging its multidisciplinary foundation and, with the help of its experienced litigators, KI Legal Personal Injury can fight for the results and compensation that victims deserve without pushing for premature settlements due to financial reasons. This financial paradigm shift swings the pendulum in our favor when it comes to negotiating with insurance carriers, inherently leading to better results for clients. For the latest updates.

    Common Legal Issues in Personal Injury and Wrongful Death Cases
    Wrongful Death
  • Many large insurance companies use the Colossus software to determine how much they will offer to pay to settle a personal injury case. The software inputs a variety of factors that can either increase or decrease the value of a claim, with certain factors carrying an outsized influence on the calculations. One of the factors that are among the most significant upward drivers of value for a claim is a permanent impairment designation.

    Colossus utilizes the American Medical Association’s (AMA) Guides to the Evaluation of Permanent Impairment to evaluate claims of personal impairment. The AMA defines permanent impairment as an injury or illness resulting in long-term loss of a body part or reduction of body function. Once a patient has reached Maximum Medical Improvement, physicians use the AMA Guides to assess a patient’s impairment and document findings, according to the AMA. Under this system, there are certain injuries that, by themselves, automatically come with a permanency rating. For example, a fracture of the lumbar spine carries a permanency rating under the AMA guidelines, even if it may not require long-term treatment.

    Getting the impairment rating early is critical as insurers will use records reflecting a missing rating to reduce any later impairment rating. Many lawyers often also have medical specialists who are knowledgeable about the AMA guidelines that they will refer clients to for the purposes of completing the necessary evaluations.

    It is critical that you have an attorney who understands personal impairment and the ratings system at hand when looking to maximize settlement value on your personal injury claim. For help navigating the complex world of personal injury claims, contact KI Legal Personal Injury and sit down for a free consultation with our team of experienced attorneys. Call (212) 404-8605 or email michael@kilegal.com today.

    --

    *ATTORNEY ADVERTISING*

    *PRIOR RESULTS DO NOT GUARANTEE A SIMILAR OUTCOME*

    This information is the most up to date news available as of the date posted. Please be advised that any information posted on the KI Legal Blog or Social Channels is being supplied for informational purposes only and is subject to change at any time. For more information, and clarity surrounding your individual organization or current situation, contact a member of the KI Legal team.

    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    KI Legal Personal Injury fights for victims of a wide array of personal injury claims, from Motor Vehicle Accidents to Scaffolding and Ladder Falls to Slip/Trip & Falls, amongst others. By leveraging its multidisciplinary foundation and, with the help of its experienced litigators, KI Legal Personal Injury can fight for the results and compensation that victims deserve without pushing for premature settlements due to financial reasons. This financial paradigm shift swings the pendulum in our favor when it comes to negotiating with insurance carriers, inherently leading to better results for clients. For the latest updates.

    Claims Assessment Cases - Permanent Impairment
    Insurance Defense,  Personal Injury
  • In evaluating a claim for injuries sustained in a car accident or otherwise, it is crucial that the effects of all injuries or even potential injuries are reported before submitting a claim to an insurer. Why? Because it can be difficult to raise claims for later injuries that may have been discoverable earlier on. To determine the scope of loss of enjoyment of life for an injured person, treating physicians interview patients and document the areas that the injury is expected to impact them as a result of their injuries. The report or notes must document the loss of enjoyment of life claim, and anyone filing for a claim must also specifically claim for loss of enjoyment or an insurer might undervalue the total claim. Additionally, a loss of enjoyment of life claim can only be considered if there is a whole person permanent impairment rating of greater than three percent (3%). Nonetheless, it is still important to have any potential injuries or impairments accounted for.

    There are many different factors that insurers use when evaluating a claim for loss of enjoyment of life. Therefore, it is crucial to ensure that any claim for loss of enjoyment of life accounts for this type of injury as holistically as possible. For assistance filing a claim for loss of enjoyment of life, or any other personal injury related matters, contact the experienced personal injury attorneys at KI Legal Personal Injury by calling (212) 404-8605 or emailing michael@kilegal.com to set up a free consultation today.

    --

    *ATTORNEY ADVERTISING*

    *PRIOR RESULTS DO NOT GUARANTEE A SIMILAR OUTCOME*

    This information is the most up to date news available as of the date posted. Please be advised that any information posted on the KI Legal Blog or Social Channels is being supplied for informational purposes only and is subject to change at any time. For more information, and clarity surrounding your individual organization or current situation, contact a member of the KI Legal team.

    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    KI Legal Personal Injury fights for victims of a wide array of personal injury claims, from Motor Vehicle Accidents to Scaffolding and Ladder Falls to Slip/Trip & Falls, amongst others. By leveraging its multidisciplinary foundation and, with the help of its experienced litigators, KI Legal Personal Injury can fight for the results and compensation that victims deserve without pushing for premature settlements due to financial reasons. This financial paradigm shift swings the pendulum in our favor when it comes to negotiating with insurance carriers, inherently leading to better results for clients. For the latest updates.

    Claims Assessment Cases: Loss of Enjoyment of Life
    Insurance Defense,  Personal Injury
  • Many people who are injured in car crashes or other accidents unfortunately must continue performing some activities that still cause them pain out of necessity, such as work, household, and educational duties. These activities are labeled “duties under duress” in the personal injury world. Duties under duress are among the most valuable factors used by claims assessment software in determining the value of a potential claim for an insurance company. Therefore, it is extremely important that you understand what exactly constitutes a “duty under duress” and how they must be properly accounted for.

    To begin assessing a potential personal injury claim as a duty under duress, the duress must be recorded by a doctor. Duress may remain unaccounted for if a doctor does not note the pain in their chart note and narrative report. Both the chart note and narrative report provide detailed accountings of the injured person’s visit to the doctor. They are also used by the doctor to determine the chronological order of the events prior; this includes information about any injury-related time restrictions at work, or activities the injured person continues to do at home out of necessity. When meeting with a doctor post-accident, it is imperative that any details about duties under duress be mentioned by the injured person and subsequently reported (if applicable) by the injured person’s doctor.

    If a claim fails to include existing duties under duress, it can be substantially undervalued. That is why it is extremely important that you have an experienced personal injury attorney in your corner advocating for your case and making sure they're doing everything to get you the money you deserve. Our team here at KI Legal Personal Injury is here to help you, whether you want to learn more about duties under duress or get started on filing a lawsuit for an injury you, or someone you know, suffered. Reach out to us today for a free consultation by calling (212) 404-8605 or by emailing michael@kilegal.com.

    --

    *ATTORNEY ADVERTISING*

    *PRIOR RESULTS DO NOT GUARANTEE A SIMILAR OUTCOME*

    This information is the most up to date news available as of the date posted. Please be advised that any information posted on the KI Legal Blog or Social Channels is being supplied for informational purposes only and is subject to change at any time. For more information, and clarity surrounding your individual organization or current situation, contact a member of the KI Legal team.

    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    KI Legal Personal Injury fights for victims of a wide array of personal injury claims, from Motor Vehicle Accidents to Scaffolding and Ladder Falls to Slip/Trip & Falls, amongst others. By leveraging its multidisciplinary foundation and, with the help of its experienced litigators, KI Legal Personal Injury can fight for the results and compensation that victims deserve without pushing for premature settlements due to financial reasons. This financial paradigm shift swings the pendulum in our favor when it comes to negotiating with insurance carriers, inherently leading to better results for clients. For the latest updates.

    Claims Assessment Software: Duties Under Duress
    Personal Injury
  • Many large insurance corporations use the Colossus software to calculate how much they will payout for personal injury claims. This software considers certain factors related to treatment and utilizes these factors to either increase or decrease the value of a claim. Physical therapy – including massage therapy, pool therapy, and acupuncture – add value to a case as long as they are tracked and charted by a doctor. For special treatments, such as for spinal injuries, the doctor must specifically document the injury, treatment, and any aides employed for potential value to be determined. Aides here include the use of walkers, crutches, canes, soft collars, neck braces, and more; injections such as cortisone shots, epidurals, and nerve blocks must also be recorded by doctors. Why must everything be recorded? Because these treatments, aides, and medicines have varying values in the Colossus system.

    Imaging studies such as MRIs and CT scans add to the benefit of the injured party, but only one time, meaning that any supplemental studies conducted after the initial scan will not add value to your case. On the other hand, gaps and delays in treatment can lower the value of a personal injury claim. Delays here are attributed whenever the injured party hesitates to seek treatment while gaps are any stops in the course of receiving treatment, such as missing an appointment. In some companies’ Colossus systems, a 5-day gap can trigger a negative effect, while in other systems it can take a 7-day gap. The longer the delay, the larger the decrease in value – a drop to zero is entirely possible. As you can imagine, delays and gaps make or break personal injury cases, which is why it is so important to stay on top of your recovery.

    For help navigating the complex world of personal injury claims, contact KI Legal Personal Injury and sit down for a free consultation with our team of experienced attorneys. Call (212) 404-8605 or email michael@kilegal.com today.

    --

    *ATTORNEY ADVERTISING*

    *PRIOR RESULTS DO NOT GUARANTEE A SIMILAR OUTCOME*

    This information is the most up to date news available as of the date posted. Please be advised that any information posted on the KI Legal Blog or Social Channels is being supplied for informational purposes only and is subject to change at any time. For more information, and clarity surrounding your individual organization or current situation, contact a member of the KI Legal team.

    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    KI Legal Personal Injury fights for victims of a wide array of personal injury claims, from Motor Vehicle Accidents to Scaffolding and Ladder Falls to Slip/Trip & Falls, amongst others. By leveraging its multidisciplinary foundation and, with the help of its experienced litigators, KI Legal Personal Injury can fight for the results and compensation that victims deserve without pushing for premature settlements due to financial reasons. This financial paradigm shift swings the pendulum in our favor when it comes to negotiating with insurance carriers, inherently leading to better results for clients. For the latest updates.

    How Medical Treatment Affects Personal Injury Claims
    Personal Injury
  • If you are dealing with a claims assessment case, then there are certain factors the claim analysis software will consider. In most cases, the only documents that the insurance companies will use are the actual medical records and evidence that you submit, such as doctors' reports. Since this is the case, it is important that your doctor properly document all of the injuries that you may have sustained during your car accident that are relevant to your claim. If the doctor fails to diagnose or record an injury that was caused by your crash, it is highly unlikely that it will be included in the claim that is analyzed by the software.

    The specific factors of a claims assessment case will be discussed more in depth in following articles, but there are a few things to note before considering these factors. First, each factor in the system has an allocation of “severity points.” What are severity points? Severity points represent the severity of a personal injury, with higher points indicating a higher value of the claim; the monetary value that is assigned to these points varies on a company-by-company basis. Because this is the process that is used, it is crucial that you submit information regarding as many of the factors as possible so that 1) your case represents the true value of your claim and 2) it possibly leads to a higher settlement. Second, the claim assessment software uses more than 12,000 factors in determining the value of the claim. Some of the general categories of factors include:

    • Injuries,
    • Complaints,
    • Delays and gaps in treatment,
    • History of treatment,
    • Imaging,
    • Duties under duress,
    • Prognosis,
    • Permanent impairment, and
    • Loss of enjoyment of life.

    If you are concerned about whether your documents are sufficient to make a claim, or need help ensuring that your demand letter to the insurance company is properly formatted so that your claim is fully evaluated, it is extremely important that you find an experienced personal injury attorney to help you. Our personal injury attorneys at KI Legal Personal Injury are ready and able to handle this process for you. With a strong attention to detail and years of experience advocating for clients, our personal injury attorneys will do everything they can to help you succeed with your lawsuit. Contact KI Legal Personal Injury today at (212) 404-8605 or by emailing michael@kilegal.com to set up a free consultation and learn about the next steps available to you.

    --

    *ATTORNEY ADVERTISING*

    *PRIOR RESULTS DO NOT GUARANTEE A SIMILAR OUTCOME*

    This information is the most up to date news available as of the date posted. Please be advised that any information posted on the KI Legal Blog or Social Channels is being supplied for informational purposes only and is subject to change at any time. For more information, and clarity surrounding your individual organization or current situation, contact a member of the KI Legal team.

    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    KI Legal Personal Injury fights for victims of a wide array of personal injury claims, from Motor Vehicle Accidents to Scaffolding and Ladder Falls to Slip/Trip & Falls, amongst others. By leveraging its multidisciplinary foundation and, with the help of its experienced litigators, KI Legal Personal Injury can fight for the results and compensation that victims deserve without pushing for premature settlements due to financial reasons. This financial paradigm shift swings the pendulum in our favor when it comes to negotiating with insurance carriers, inherently leading to better results for clients. For the latest updates.

    What Factors Do Claim Analysis Software Consider?
    Personal Injury