When Can You Sue a Negligent Driver in a No-Fault State?

Posted by on May 21, 2016 in Personal Injury | 0 comments

If you are planning to purchase a car in the near future, then one very important thing you first must know is that, in America, carrying automobile liability insurance is mandated by law. The only question is which state you live in, because some states differ from others when it comes to car insurance requirements.

There are different types of automobile liability insurance coverage; three of these are the full tort, the limited tort and the no-fault or personal injury protection (PIP) car insurance. The no-fault car insurance is currently mandated in nine states, namely: Florida, Hawaii, Kansas, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, New York, North Dakota, and Utah. The states of Kentucky, New Jersey and Pennsylvania, meanwhile, give drivers the option to choose between no-fault car insurance and full tort coverage, which is the same type of liability insurance required in all other states.

No-fault insurance is a type of insurance coverage wherein an insurance provider pays its own policy holder (referred to as the first party) in the event of an accident, regardless of whose fault the accident may be. But while this type of coverage restricts the victim’s right to sue (the person who is at fault in the accident), some people find it more advantageous as it is able to:

  • Eliminate the need for the victim to go after the other person’s insurance company for the compensation he or she may be legally entitled to receive, as well as the need to file a lawsuit just for the purpose of determining who is at fault, or more at fault, in the accident
  • Lower the cost of insurance premium since there are no more court and court-related legal fees to be paid by the insurance provider.

No-fault insurance actually covers bodily injuries (your own injuries), medical bills, and other losses, like lost wages due to inability to report to work (payment of lost wages, however, depends on the state where no-fault coverage is mandated, thus, it is not an automatic guarantee); these losses or damages are legally called “economic damages.”

In full tort and limited tort car liability insurance packages (which are more expensive than no-fault coverage), both parties involved in the accident have the right to sue each other, mainly for the purposes of proving fault and seeking compensation (for damages) from the liable party. Full tort coverage, however, allows for compensation for pain and suffering, which is not allowed in limited tort.

It should be understood that restriction to sue the “at-fault” or negligent driver in no-fault states does not mean absolute elimination of the victim’s right to sue; this restriction is simply meant to discourage every victim from filing a lawsuit, which may be based on non-economic damages, such as loss of consortium (loss of spouse’s companionship), pain and suffering, and severe injuries. Thus, according to the website of Crowe & Mulvey, LLP, for the negligent driver to be sued, there are thresholds or limits that need to be observed:

  • Monetary Threshold – which refers to the cost of medical treatment paid by, or billed to, the patient.
  • Injury Threshold – the severity of the injury suffered by the victim, such as “significant” disfigurement, bone fracture, loss of a body part or organ, loss of a body function or permanent disability, or death.

Knowing your state’s specific no-fault insurance laws will help you decide correctly on what to base your non-economic damages lawsuit.

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Types of Medical Malpractice

Posted by on Dec 6, 2015 in Personal Injury | 0 comments

Medical practitioners, including physicians, nurses, surgeons, pharmacists, and others, have legal responsibilities to make sure that their patients are not put in dangerous situations and getting treatment that may benefit them. Those who get medical treatment give their profit to these types of professionals, therefore careful focus on health and safety is vitally important to these employees. Regrettably, sometimes this trust is misplaced in a professional who is harmful or irresponsible. Serious medical negligence incidents can lead to physical and fiscal damages for casualties, a number of whom cannot pay the results. According to the National Practitioner Data Bank, there was a total of 154,621 cases of medical malpractice payments in the United States from 2004-2014.

Some are far more common than many others, although medical malpractice may encompass numerous specific behaviors. Because of the complicated nature of the medical field generally, it could be hard to learn what really constitutes medical malpractice; yet a medical practitioner fails to follow the criteria of their field and provide care that is reasonable, the victims may have reasons for authorized recourse.

5 Types
You can find particular kinds that are seen more commonly than others while dozens of types of negligence exist. These typical forms of medical malpractice are the following:

  • Surgical Errors
  • Prescription Blunders
  • Treatment that is delayed
  • Poor Treatment
  • Misdiagnosis

For instance, mistakes that are surgical commonly need another surgery to fix whatever was wrong the very first time. It could mean the patient has to undergo more tests, which may be incredibly costly when a misdiagnosis is detected. These kinds of things are very expensive because of the number of individuals competing to get a doctor. There are just so many hours in a day and only a few processes could be done, inducing equipment and time of medical practitioners to be a valuable commodity.

As said on the website of Habush Habush & Rottier, these types of medical malpractice compose a large number of medical negligence cases over America and often leave sufferers with severe bodily impacts, along with significant fiscal outcomes too. Treating the effects of medical malpractice could be very difficult, particularly for someone who currently fights with payments for health-related costs.

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Premises Liability: Escalator Accidents and Injuries

Posted by on Aug 20, 2015 in Personal Injury | 0 comments

News of a recent escalator accident in China has caught the eye of international media. Last July 27, The Guardian wrote of a 30 year-old woman who died in a shopping mall after falling into an escalator’s mechanism after metal panel connecting the machine with the floor gave way as she stepped off.

This tragic accident is among the millions of escalator-related injuries and fatalities constantly reported all over the world. Doctors from the Department of Emergency Medicine in the University of Bern noted that roughly around 10,000 escalator accidents occur all over the United States. They pointed out that while these accidents rarely result in fatalities, they do cause serious injuries that require immediate medical attention. Unfortunately, they also found that children are among the most common victims.

Continued report of escalator accidents show that these incidents are a great cause for concern, proving that prevention should be prioritized. To do this, property owners should be reminded of their responsibility in ensuring such incidents won’t take places. Owners of malls, hotels, and other similar establishments that make use of escalators should ensure that the machines in their premises are well-maintained and are able to the safety standards mandated by law.

It’s also crucial that both property owners and the public are informed of the different causes of escalator accidents. Among the most common factors contributing to such an incident is when a piece of clothing gets stuck between the steps or the sides of the machine. As with the recent accident in China, loose flooring panels are one of the most deadly causes of escalator accidents. These common factors and causes can be mitigated by proper maintenance and outfitting escalators with proper safety features such as an accessible stop button.

According to www.jeffsampsonlaw.com, escalator accidents are among the many types of premises liability cases. As with the other types of incidents that can be pursued following a state’s premises liability laws, an escalator accident is understood to be the responsibility of a property owner’s lack of appropriate action to ensure that his or her patrons are safe from any negligent accident.

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Just How Safe are Children’s Toys?

Posted by on Apr 12, 2015 in Personal Injury | 0 comments

A report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) identifies falls, drowning, burns, poisoning and motor vehicle accidents (which top the list) as the leading causes of unintentional injuries and deaths among children in the US. Every year, more than 12,000 children (aged between 0 and 19) die and at least 9.2 million more are injured due to these causes.

Equally dangerous as these causes are the many different products that people stuff in their homes. And it cannot be denied that so many of the different things that Americans purchase can be sources of severe injuries, even death, too; the thousands of injuries and deaths caused by these products can be verified through the records of the US Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC). These products include home furniture and décor, tools, children’s outdoor activity equipment, sports equipment, inflatable amusements, nursery products and children’s toys.

Between 2007 and 2010, millions of toys were recalled by the CPSC due to the dangers that these presented, like sharp edges that could cause lacerations, small parts that were considered as choking hazards, toxic substances and chemical contents that exceeded federal limits. The CPSC is charged with enforcing toy safety standards laws, which set the guidelines on: the required sizes of children’s toys; the inaccessibility of the toys’ batteries and magnets to small children; noise and toxicity limits; and, the display of labels containing the possible risks of choking hazards.

One major issue with toy safety is that toy labels do not include ingredients like food items and many manufacturers, both local and foreign, do not put on the labels information regarding any possible harmful elements. Consumers, therefore, are left without any clue about the actual safety of the products that they buy (everyone, of course, assumes that all products made available in stores are totally safe).

An article on the website of the Law Offices of Vic Feazell, P.C., outlines the responsibility of all individuals to act in ways that will never recklessly endanger another. Yet, in spite of the necessity to act responsibly and the existence of laws that should keep everyone, especially children, from getting injured either through accidents or through the use of consumer products, injurious accidents and products still continue to harm children.

The family of a child, who has been injured in an accident or due to the use of a toy or any other product that is proven harmful, has the legal right to file a lawsuit against the responsible party. In so many cases accidents occur and defective products continue to be manufactured and sold due to the grave negligence of some individuals. It would be wise to seek the help of a seasoned personal injury lawyer who will see to it that all the documents required in the lawsuit and that the child’s and his/her family’s rights and interests are strongly defended.

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How to Keep Your Storage Unit Damage-Free

Posted by on Feb 25, 2015 in Storage Units | 0 comments

Even the most secure storage units can be susceptible to humidity and pests. Nothing damages valuable art or comic book collections quite like humidity and mildew. Likewise, pests can eat through clothing and wires to electronics, damaging them irreparably. Luckily, there are several precautions that can be taken to avoid these problems.

Moths, rodents, ants, termites, and even birds can find sneaky ways to infiltrate your storage unit. They can eat at belongings, defecate around the unit, and may even die within the space to create an unpleasant and unsanitary environment. Pest control sprays may offer a quick fix to the problem; however there are extra securities you can take.

Placing dryer sheets in the corners of boxes and the unit will serve the dual purpose of deterring pests and making the storage space smell fresh. Canvas drop clothes can also be laid down prior to moving boxes into the storage space. This provides an extra layer through which the pests must exceed in order to gain access to your belongings. Also, if storing a vacuum cleaner, ensure the bag is removed or emptied before placing in the storage unit. Leftover food or crumbs in the bag will attract pests. Small details like these can save you many hassles in the future.

A climate controlled unit is best for avoiding humidity damage. If you do not have this luxury, it is wise to avoid cardboard boxes that may retain and fold under the presence of humidity. Instead, plastic bins with air-tight lids offer plenty of protection to your belongings. Otherwise, the internet site of Mopac Self Storage urges individuals to avoid plastic inside of storage units as it is more likely to lock in moisture. The age old trick of charcoal in a saucepan will also help to remove humidity in the air and keep it from damaging your possessions. Ventilation is also vital to keeping humidity from forming. Placing boxes on wooden pallets allows air to move and filter through the unit.

While not all problems are foreseeable, reasonable precautions against common storage unit problems should be taken when possible. If your possessions are worth being stored, they are worth being protected.

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Commutations in Oklahoma

Posted by on Jan 8, 2015 in Workplace Injury | 0 comments

Injury in the workplace can occur, especially in inherently hazardous industries such as construction and oil, but even those not in the field can be a victim. In general, they can get financial assistance without having to prove fault for work-related injuries with their workers’ compensation insurance.

There are seven benefits that an employee is generally entitled to under workers’ compensation in Oklahoma. These are:

  • Medical treatment
  • Temporary total disability
  • Temporary partial disability
  • Permanent total disability
  • Mileage reimbursement
  • Scarring and disfigurement
  • Permanent impairment

Funds will be forthcoming for an injured worker from one or several of these sources. In most cases, the funds are release on a periodic basis as the benefits accrue (“pay as you go”). For example, mileage reimbursement benefits of 40 cents are given for every mile that an injured worker travels for doctor visits, so a claimant needs to log the mileage and submit it for payment.

On the other hand, there are benefits that are paid out in one go, such as for scarring and disfigurement and permanent impairment. This is usually after all the hullaballoo has died down and the injured worker has attained “maximum medical improvement.”

However, the insurer may offer or the claimant or the employer can choose to settle a claim in full or in part in one lump sum rather than as an ongoing monthly payment. This is referred to as commutation and may apply for disability benefits for lost wages or medical expense benefits. The claimant may apply for or be offered Full Commutation or Partial Commutation.

The biggest advantage of commutation is the worker gets a large amount at one time. The tricky part is not getting short-changed in the process. As pointed out on the website of Oklahoma commutation law firm Abel Law Firm, the size of the settlement may seem attractive but considering that it means giving up any rights to future payments, the claimant could be at the losing end in the long run if the injury is more serious or lasts longer than anticipated, or there is an unforeseen development.

Before committing to a commutation, consultations with the doctor and an experienced commutations lawyer are in order. The doctor will be able to advise the patient about the probable outcome of the injury, while the lawyer will evaluate whether the settlement offer is fair given the circumstances. After consulting with a doctor make sure to immediately follow up by speaking with a lawyer specializing in commutations injuries.

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Benefits of Freight Factoring

Posted by on Sep 24, 2014 in Financial Concerns | 0 comments

Freight factoring is often regarded as a last resort to scare up funds a small trucking business with cash flow problems needs to keep its head above water. This definitely the most common scenario for many freight factoring clients but a bail out is not the only thing that it provides.


When you get your cash from selling your invoice to a freight factoring company, you can do whatever you want with it: pay debts, buy new equipment, invest in marketing, expand the business, etc.


As long as you have an invoice from a qualified client (meaning good credit rating or included in the pre-approved list) you can get your money within 24 to 48 hours after submitting it to the factoring company. Most factoring companies will even accommodate you on weekends and the best ones will provide you with a free fuel card in which the funds can be loaded, as described on the TBS Factoring website.


Most factoring companies will charge reasonable rates for the service and the risks they take on. Some will charge as little as 1.5% to as much as 5%, but you have to be careful that there are no hidden costs. A reputable factoring company will provide a list of additional fees over and above the factoring fee so that you know where you’re at. In most cases, the total amount you will get is between 90% and 95% of the face value of the invoice.


When you don’t have to worry about cash flow and other administrative headaches, you can concentrate more on running the trucking side of your business. Freight factoring can help you afford good people to handle various aspects of your business so that you become more efficient which in turn makes you more profitable.

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Personal Injury in All Its Forms

Posted by on Jun 1, 2014 in Personal Injury | 0 comments

It is important to remember that personal injury is not necessarily just physical damage. There are many people who are so emotionally or mentally traumatized by an event that they are unable to function normally even after their physical injuries have long healed.

It is easy for people to dismiss the impact of “emotional distress” or “pain and suffering” resulting from a tortious (wrongful) act by a third party on a victim’s life because they have never experienced it. Some may even suspect that it is merely an attempt to increase compensation in civil litigation, and that these non-physical effects are mostly imaginary.  The fact is emotional and psychological damage are much more difficult to treat and overcome than physical injuries.

According to Hach & Rose, LLP, those who suffer injury from the negligent acts of others have a right to sue for compensation for lost wages, medical bills, as well as other losses consequent to a traumatic event. A broken arm from a car accident heals much faster than overcoming the fear of getting into a car, or loss of sleep from recurrent nightmares about the event. Some people suffer deep depression from the loss of a loved one as a result of an accident, and are unable to function normally for a long period of time.

The debilitating effects of mental and emotional distress often translate to loss of livelihood for both injury victims and survivors of wrongful death. As the website of Habush Habush & Rottier S.C. points out, sudden traumatic events have long-term effects on the victims and their families that will only be overcome with time, and often requires financial support in the meantime. This is on top of any physical incapacity that may also result, so hospital, medical, and related costs must also be considered.

Personal injury is characterized by trauma. Victims are left feeling helpless because the event was brought on by the negligent or careless actions of a third party which they are powerless to prevent. There is nothing more traumatic than the loss of control. If you or a close family member has suffered injury or death because of negligence, it is time to take back control. Consult with a personal injury lawyer in the area to protect the legal rights of the victims and to get full compensation for all the damage, physical or otherwise, that has been done.

Being a victim of personal injury is a traumatic event. For more information on your personal injury case, contact the McDonough personal injury lawyers at this link: http://ausbandlawfirm.com/mcdonough/.

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Protecting Yourself against Online Predators

Posted by on Jan 16, 2014 in Online Safety | 0 comments

The Internet is a world-wide medium: an easy way to communicate and meet new friends, but despite its accessibility and convenience it has been a den for online predators looking for their victims online. Because of the anonymity that the Internet provides, it can be hard to determine who the person you or your children are talking to, and could potentially be taking advantage of you.

The dangers of internet sex crimes affect anyone of any economic, age, ethnic, religious, or social group. Anyone can be a predator or a victim: it can be very hard to determine people when they are offline. Social networking sites are the mainly the go-to sites for sex offenders and online predators if they want to know more information about a person, therefore online safety is something that should be seriously considered. It may be difficult to determine precisely who an online predator is, but here are some things that could raise alarms:

  • They fake their identity to lure victims into believing they share same interests.
  • Generally internet-savvy and knows the internet lingo to appear friendly.
  • Try to appear trusting at the beginning, often searching for those who are emotionally sensitive.
  • When the victim seems more trusting, they can start to become more provocative

Although recent studies show that online predators are steering away from the conventional ways of provoking victims: it may take just about two minutes for the conversations to become sexualized, according to a study from the European Online Grooming Project. There is a strong presence of young people online, and many of them do not consider the real danger of the internet. Protecting yourself against such predators could mean proper information and education about such dangers, and how to properly set your computer with the highest privacy settings possible.

It is also vitally important for individuals to be aware of these laws in the event that they are falsely accused of internet sex crimes. With the popularity television programs designed to shame and ambush internet predators, some police may become overzealous in their attempts to capture potential sex offenders and instead arrest the innocent. Being careful in online chats can help protect you from unfairly facing these serious charges.

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The Importance of Getting the Money You Are Owed from an Insurance Claim

Posted by on Jan 15, 2014 in Financial Concerns | 0 comments

Insurance is supposed to provide one with a safety net in case of a natural calamity such as hurricanes, floods, fire, or for an adverse event such as theft. These are things that are almost impossible to plan for, and property damage or loss usually ensues.

Much of the damage that a property sustains requires extensive repairs and costs that a typical home or business owner will not be able to pay without serious consequences to their financial situation. The same applies for theft, where a business may need to replace lost inventory or simple to repair damaged equipment and property. This can lead to dire financial straits, perhaps even bankruptcy, especially for business owners. It is therefore important to get the full sum of money as stipulated in the insurance policy to avoid these financial difficulties. In order to do that, an insurance claim must be made properly and in a timely manner in accordance with established procedures.

Insurance companies do not make it easy to make a claim, whether it is for residential or commercial property for flood, storm, fire or theft. Their purpose is not to help policy holders but to make money from the premiums they are paid, so insurers would like to keep claim payouts to a minimum.

An article on the website of Smith Kendall PLLC, the skilled claim preparation attorneys point out that insurance claims have to be prepared and filed in a timely manner in order to prevent disputes, denials, or underpayments. Policy holders who have no idea what they need to do can easily be discouraged by the claims procedure, and often settle for less than what they are entitled to just to get it over with. Others are at a loss when their claims are denied, and many are not aware that they can and should appeal a denial of a legitimate claim.

When making a theft or property damage insurance claim, it often pays dividends to have a claims preparation professional do the job. It will save time, and ensures that the claim is paid in full as stipulated under the terms of the policy.

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