Archives for : July2014

Testing For Prostate Cancer – Why You Should Get A Second Opinion

“Cancer can take away all of my physical abilities.
It cannot touch my mind.
It cannot touch my heart.
It cannot touch my soul.”
Jim Valvano

You felt fine when you went in for your prostate exam. In fact, you were proud of yourself for taking such a preventative measure. Everyone says it’s important to get checked and so you did. You were not expecting that the doctor would actually find anything wrong. However, she did, and now you’re scared and confused, and maybe a little bit suspicious.

Not only are those feelings natural and totally understandable, you should do something about them. First, tell a trusted confidant how you feel. Then immediately schedule a second opinion.

Get A Second Opinion

The Hippocratic Oath implores physicians to leverage their knowledge and experience to “do no harm” and very few ever intentionally break that oath. However, even the most seasoned medical professional makes mistakes from time to time.

If you have a nagging “what if they’re wrong?” suspicion, that’s your first clue it’s time to get a second opinion. Even if a second opinion confirms the first, there is value in not having to wonder. Getting multiple opinions allows you to get a breadth of oncology expertise for your situation.

What if I just don’t like my first doctor? That happens and it’s important to have a good relationship with your doctor should this prostate cancer diagnosis turn out to be accurate. Most doctors expect you’ll get a second opinion so don’t worry about hurting their feelings, if that’s an issue for you. Many insurance companies actually require a second opinion, but check to see if yours covers the costs. A misdiagnosis can negatively impact you and your family for many years.

Contact Teal & Montgomery to Discuss Your Case

If you have experienced the affects of a misdiagnosis of prostate cancer, take a moment to speak with the attorneys of Team & Montgomery. Our experienced counsel is available to help build the strongest possible case on your behalf. Our depth of understanding allows us to avoid common pitfalls in dealing with the adversarial insurance companies.

If you have lost a loved one because of a doctor’s failure to diagnose prostate cancer, or if your own diagnosis was delayed due to doctor error, talk to us today. We will not charge attorney’s fees unless we recover damages for your injuries. Contact us today!

Insurance Denied My Disability Claim – Now What?

Over the last several years, disability insurance companies have seen a significant increase in the number of disability claims filed. Concomitantly, there has been a dramatic increase in the number of claim denials, many of which are inappropriate and unwarranted denials. Claims that at one time would have been somewhat perfunctory are now denied.

This increase in denials is likely due to a number of contributing behaviors and causes including:

  • Customer’s contractual misunderstandings
  • Avaricious insurance industry trends
  • Customers’ general lack of knowledge
  • Unfair tactics to deny valid claims
  • “Bad faith” conduct from your insurance provider
  • Veritable breech of contract or insurance fraud

Victims of these causes and behaviors may have the right to take significant legal action against their “bad faith” insurance company. In this blog we hope to increase our clients’ knowledge of the process so that they can make well-informed choices in the wake of a claim denial.

Reasons Given For Claim Denial

When you purchased your disabilities insurance, you did so in good faith that the insurance provider would be there for you when you need them the most. Denial of a claim can be frustrating and disheartening. Here are a couple of the common reasons you may have been given as to why your claim was denied or declared “invalid”:

  • Elimination period not being satisfied, either due to the inadequate number of days or days not being consecutive
  • Total disability definitions, terms and conditions “were not satisfied”
  • Residual disability definitions, terms and conditions “were not satisfied”

Claim Denial Is Not The Final Word

If you or a loved one have experienced a disability that is in accordance with the terms of the disability income policy, your insurance carrier has a legal obligation to pay your claim. A long-term disability insurance denial may be a breach of contract.

One of the tactics that insurance companies use in bad form is to simply delay processing your claim. If your claim for long-term disability benefits has been delayed or denied don’t hesitate to speak with one of The Teal Group’s Santa Rosa disabilities claims attorneys. We can talk with you about the multiplicity of options you have to continue to pursue full compensation from your legitimate claim.

Before a lawsuit is in order, there are several steps we can help you take, including the possibility of filing an “appeal” or “review” of your denied claim. In fact, your current plan may have outlined these options as a buffer before a lawsuit occurs. Let’s discuss the appeal process and help you articulate a well-informed strategy to receive the benefits that may be awarded to you in this claim.

Having an experienced and knowledgeable attorney will greatly increase the chance that your insurance company will rectify their issues. If they don’t, we are poised to represent you in court to force action from your provider to honor their contract. Contact us today!


Defensive Driving Techniques To Keep You Safe This Summer

“Have you ever noticed that anyone driving slower than you is an idiot,
and anyone going faster than you is a maniac?”
George Carlin

George Carlin was onto something – everyone thinks they are the good drivers, and that’s a problem. Studies show that somewhere between 30,000 and 40,000 Americans are killed in auto accidents each year. As this summer is winding down, you may still have a road trip left on the calendar. With that, here are a few tips to help you prepare for a safer trip.

Before You Embark:

Before you load up your vehicle and take off, be sure to perform routine maintenance and check-up.

  • Rotate your tires
  • Fluids checked
  • Change the oil
  • Check your battery
  • Have your breaks tested
  • Check your headlights and break lights

Load Up & Lock Down:

Here are a few questions to ask before you put your vehicle in drive.

  • Are we all buckled up?
  • Do I need to adjust my mirrors?
  • Is everything in the cab secure?
  • Can I improve my visibility?
  • Is my hitch totally secure?
  • Is my camper secure?
  • Is everything on the boat secure?
  • Are trailer lights fully functional?

On The Road Again:

And…you’re off! Now here are a few safe driving tips to keep in mind when you’re on the move. Pedestrians, cyclists, and motorcyclists are the most vulnerable travellers on the roads. Be on the look out for any and all of them.

  • Cars stopped in traffic may be letting pedestrians pass. Beware before you zoom by in the passing lane.
  • Crosswalks in some parts of the country are more frequently used than in others. Heads up!
  • School’s out, but kids and teachers may still be around those school zones this time of year. Proceed with caution.
  • Most motorcycle collisions occur with vehicles making turns. Double check for motorcycles before you turn.

Beware of Hazards:

In addition to vulnerable travelers, being cognizant of hazards can help you stay safe on the roads this summer.

  • Summer can do a number on your tires. Think through what to do in case of tire blowouts.
  • Lots of construction typically happens during the summer months. Construction work zones have a raised number for accidents. Slow down and stay aware of construction vehicles.
  • Since school is out, more teenagers will be on the road throughout the day. Not assuming drivers are prepared to do what they are supposed to do is a safety measure we recommend.

Have You Been In An Accident?

If you’ve already suffered an auto accident this summer, or in recent months, let’s talk about whether or not you have a case to pursue compensation for potentially liable parties. Often multiple entities should share the burden of responsibility for the damages caused in an auto accident.

Our Santa Rosa auto accident lawyers can visit you in your home or hospital if necessary. We welcome you to contact us to schedule a free initial consultation at your convenience after a rear end collision or other type of car or truck crash.

Most Common Construction Accidents

Year after year, construction jobs are listed among the “10 Most Dangerous Jobs” lists in California and across the United States. This is partly due to frenetic work environments typical of many construction sites. In addition, with hazards including heavy machinery in abundance, it is no wonder construction jobs have led to a high number of fatalities over the years.

Most Common Causes Of Fatal Injuries

Here are the four most common construction-related causes of fatal accidents year after year in California:

  • Objects striking workers
  • Caught in or between objects
  • Falls
  • Electrocutions

Common Construction Site Hazards

Injuries are unintended consequences of construction work. Every job site and each project presents a different set of challenges. However, there are some common hazards that construction workers should be cognizant of when on the job site. Due to the high fatality rate of injury accidents related to these hazards, adhering to OSHA regulations can be a life or death matter.

  • Open trenches (Falls)
  • Unfinished floors (Falls)
  • Ladders & scaffolding (Falls)
  • Exposed electrical wires (Electrocution)
  • Overhead power lines (Electrocution)
  • Dump trucks (Caught in/between)
  • Cranes (Struck by or caught in/between)
  • Large Blade Saws (Caught in/between)
  • Heavy machinery (Struck by)
  • Loose bricks & wood planks (Struck by)
  • Moving trucks and vehicles (Struck by)

Your Rights In The Wake Of A Construction Injury

The state of California has defined the rights of employees, contractors, and their families in the aftermath of a severe or lethal injury accident. There may be multiple liable parties and only a thorough investigation of the facts will uncover who may be responsible for appropriate compensation for damages.

Leverage The Experience Of Teal Law Group In Your Construction Accident Suit

The Santa Rosa law offices of Teal & Montgomery are uniquely prepared to represent you in your construction injury or wrongful death suit. Enlist the advocacy of our construction accident attorneys with our 35+ years relevant experience. Contact us today.

Could The Car Manufacturer Be Held Liable For Your Accident?

Was a defective part potentially a cause of your car accident and subsequent injuries?  From time to time automotive parts makers can be held liable for allowing faulty parts and components into the marketplace and, therefore, into the automobiles we depend on. When bad brakes, poorly designed tires, faulty accelerator pads, and defective transmission systems make it into the vehicles we drive, dangerous and even fatal consequences could result.

The unfortunate truth is, when manufacturers allow defects to get through, consumers are at risk. In such cases, the manufacturer should clearly be responsible for full compensation of damages that result from the accidents caused.

Who Should We Sue?

If you were severely harmed or had a loved one fatally injured in an auto accident and you suspect a defective automobile part may have been partially or fully to blame, whom should you name in your suit? Fortunately you don’t have to work this out on your own.  When you enlist the advocacy of The Teal Law Group, our team of seasoned defective products attorneys can walk you through all the possibilities. Meanwhile, here are some of the parties that may be a part of the discussion.

  • Your vehicle manufacturer
  • The “at fault” driver’s vehicle manufacturer
  • The manufacturer of the faulty parts that contributed to the accident
  • Quality control engineers
  • Anyone directly involved in the design, misleading marketing of the product
  • Mechanics
  • Retailers responsible for selling you the vehicle (esp. if it can be proven the existing problem was known) 

Experienced Santa Rosa Defective Products Attorney

If you or someone in your family was seriously injured while using any type of manufactured product in Santa Rosa or beyond, you are encouraged to talk to one of our attorneys at Teal & Montgomery. We have the experience that it takes to pursue the compensation you need after a serious injury caused by any type of auto manufacturer’s product.

We welcome you to contact us to schedule a free initial consultation at your convenience. A Santa Rosa product liability attorney can visit you in your home or hospital if necessary.

Common Mistakes Dentists Make & The Serious Damage They Can Cause

“I thrill when I drill a bicuspid
It’s swell though they tell me I’m mal-ad-just-ed.”
Steve Martin as Dentist, Orin Scrivello in Little Shop Of Horrors  (1986)

For dentophobes (people with a fear of dentists), a sadistic, out of control dentist may be one of the most unnerving ideas for a movie character ever. The embodiment of those fears was realized with Steve Martin’s character in the dark, musical comedy Little Shop of Horrors. The truth is, whether you suffer from or it or not, if you or someone you love has endured dental malpractice, you know the pain and suffering that results are no laughing matter.

Just two years ago, a celebrity dentist in Newport Beach was ordered to pay $641,542 to a patient who had been riddled with the pain of a mouth full of poorly applied crowns. Dental malpractice does occur and when it does, negligent dentist should be held accountable.

With all the advances in the dental care industry in the last several years, here are a few of the more common dental treatment errors:

  • Misuse of formaldehyde-based root canal filling material
  • Failure to diagnose – particularly dangerous when dentists fail to diagnose an infection or periodontal disease
  • Failure to give a treatment plan – dentists are required
  • Inserting a dental implant in the wrong direction, causing nerve damage
  • Mercury lodged and left in patient’s gums from fillings
  • Misreading x-ray followed by wrong procedure
  • Wrongful administration of anesthesia
  • Unnecessary delay in treatment
  • Infections caused by unsterilized equipment
  • Wrong tooth – some dentists have been caught carelessly pulling the wrong tooth or pulling a tooth that did not need to be pulled

Dental malpractice happens when dentists diverge from the dental standard of care they have sworn to uphold and thereby cause injury, undue discomfort and harm to a patient.  “Standard of care” is defined as “the degree of care that a reasonable and prudent dentist would exercise under the same or similar circumstances.”  When dentists step outside those boundaries, trusting patients can be harmed and pursuit of compensation is appropriate.

Contact Our Sacramento Dental Malpractice Attorneys

Our Sacramento lawyers are particularly equipped to represent you or your loved one in your dental malpractice case. Leverage our experience and depth of understanding of California malpractice law to determine whether or not your case has merit after dental experience has gone wrong.

While our many successful outcomes don’t guarantee future results, you can trust that our team is poised to pursue the best possible outcome for you and your family. Contact us today.



Cerebral Palsy – The Long Term Effects

Cerebral Palsy (CP) is a disorder that affects a person for the duration of their life. Here are a few facts about Cerebral Palsy.


  • Changes the way muscles develop and tone.
  • Affects the way movement happens
  • Motor skills are usually slowed and difficult
  • Non-degenerative condition
  • Can cause a minor to major limp
  • Can cause paralysis of the hands
  • Can cause paralysis of the legs
  • Often impairs speech to varying degrees
  • Sometimes mental retardation is a part of CP
  • There is currently no cure


Cerebral Palsy is caused by brain damage before, or during a child’s birth, as well as in its developmental years. Still, through appropriate therapy and special care many young people that grow up with Cerebral Palsy go on to live full and happy lives.


My Hand Trembles, My Heart Does Not.

Take Stephen Hopkins. Mr. Hopkins’s CP affected him to the degree he could not sign his name without his hand trembling. His limited control of his hands did not stop those who loved and believed in him from working through enduring challenges.  In 1755, Mr. Hopkins became governor of Rhode Island. After a lifetime of successful service to his country, Stephen Hopkins was one of the few historic figures privileged to sign the Declaration of Independence in 1776. As Mr. Hopkins gave his signature, it has been documented that he said, “my hand trembles, my heart does not.”


Birth Injury/Cerebral Palsy Attorneys

If your child received a birth injury that lead to brain damage and Cerebral Palsy, there is hope for your child. It is appropriate to pursue compensation for damages, which could include long-term medical care and physical therapy.


We want to hear your story – What happened during prenatal care? What are the details of your labor and delivery?  We’re poised to launch a detailed investigation into these facts for your benefit. It very well may be that your healthcare provider was negligent and their carelessness led to what caused cerebral palsy.  Our Santa Rosa birth injury attorneys offer the breadth of experience and depth of knowledge you need to tackle such a pursuit on behalf of your child.


To contact a Teal Law Group birth injury attorney call 707-525-1212 to schedule a free initial consultation at your convenience. A Santa Rosa or Sacramento cerebral palsy attorney can visit you in your home or hospital if necessary.

Medical Malpractice Suit – Pros And Cons of Accepting Settlement

If you or a loved one has been a victim of medical malpractice, a lawsuit is the appropriate measure to pursue the compensation for suffering that you are entitled. Since medical malpractice can permanently alter the course of your life, you have no choice but to approach litigation by leveraging the very best to do it right. Unfortunately, many who have gone before you have seen the regret of how missteps can cost you.

A medical malpractice lawsuit may be a necessary first move. As you embark on this endeavor with a well-qualified and experienced malpractice attorney, you will likely be offered a settlement. That settlement may, in fact, sound like a substantial amount of money. However, unless you know the depth of damages at stake, you may be tempted to take a settlement that’s insufficient to take care of the needs of your family in the wake of your injury.

Is A Settlement Offer Coming?

Part of our job as your representatives in a medical malpractice case is to find out early on in the process if the defense is even interested in a possible settlement, and if so, then to what degree? If an offer does not seem to be imminent, chances are either the physician or hospital will not consent to settlement or the insurance company prefers their chances at trial.

The Risk of Trial

When an offer is presented, you should work with us to thoroughly consider it among your options. The risk of going to trial, of course, is that there is no guarantee that a jury will be in your favor. Not only will a loss mean not receiving compensation, but it could also mean an exorbitant judgment is do at the end.

Should You Or Shouldn’t You Take The Settlement?

So how can you know whether or not it’s prudent to accept the settlement offer? Should you and your attorney keep pushing towards trial? Unfortunately, there’s not a magic formula to help us decide. The decision you and your attorney work through should be based out of medical malpractice litigation experience. With the right counsel, the choice will feel more like a well-informed strategy, rather than a blind “hope for the best” decision.

Counsel Weighing The Pros & Cons

Medical malpractice settlement is a time-consuming and nuanced process. Do not accept an insurance company’s offer before engaging a medical malpractice lawyer in Santa Rosa. Leverage the experience of Teal & Montgomery for the benefit of your case. With one of our attorneys fighting for you and your family, you can be rest assured that the best possible outcome can be achieved.

Teal & Montgomery lawyers know how to prove medical practitioner negligence. Using our network of subject matter experts, we can establish the standard of care that should have been exercised in your case. If you or a loved one has been injured through medical negligence, contact us today to discuss a Santa Rosa or a Sacramento medical malpractice suit.