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Posted by on Oct 18, 2016 in Divorce | 0 comments

How Criminal History Affects Divorce Proceedings

No one can deny the fact that going through a divorce can be an extremely difficult and emotionally challenging time. Aside from the emotional pain that comes with the dissolution of a marriage, divorcing couples will also have to contend with important legal details such as property division and child custody agreements. Couples that fail to come to an amicable agreement regarding these details will usually have to bring their dispute to court, where decisions will be left to a judge.

In a contested divorce, a judge is expected to make a ruling that will be fair and beneficial for both parties involved. A judge is expected to take into account the arguments made by each spouse in favor of one decision, as well as the point of view of any children that might be involved in the proceedings. However, a number of different factors might cause these expectations to bend in a different direction. Such decisions are mostly applicable for divorce proceedings where one of the parties involved has a notable criminal history.

When one of the spouses has a criminal offense on their record, their chances of being granted a favorable ruling during a divorce can become seriously impeded. For example, as noted by Marshall & Taylor, P.C., a parent might not be granted visitation rights if he or she is proven to have a history of alcohol or drug abuse, as well as a history of domestic violence. Meanwhile, criminal offenses related to white-collar crimes such as identity theft and fraud might also influence a judge’s decision regarding the division of a couple’s property and assets.

Because divorces involve high-stake decisions, it’s no surprise that having any criminal offense on one’s record can have a great effect on how proceedings will turn out. If you need help sorting out the legalities involved in divorce, do not hesitate to seek out legal counsel in order to learn more about your options.

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Posted by on Jul 10, 2016 in Motorcycle Accidents | 0 comments

Motorcycle Accidents: Results of Carelessness or Negligence

A motorcycle is an excellent means of transportation. Besides being fuel-efficient with regard to gas expenses, it can also enable the rider to easily drive through tight spots and past heavy traffic. The only major worry for motorcyclists is their vulnerability to possible severe injuries due to the lack of protective gears other than the helmet. Thus, to help protect riders from serious harm, the American Motorcycle Association (AMA), the largest motorcycling organization around the globe, enjoins its members and encourages all other motorcycle riders to always wear additional protective gears, such as gloves, a jacket, and the appropriate pants and footwear, whenever they will ride. All these, of course, should be worn with a helmet that complies with the standard of safety that the US Department of Transportation requires.

The 2012 record of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) on motorcycle accident shows 112,000 motorcycle mishaps; of this, 93,000 caused riders serious injuries, while 4,957 claimed riders’ lives. This only means that while it is true that motorcycles provide lots of conveniences, these also cause great risks. Majority of motorcycle accidents, according to The Benton Law Firm may be blamed on drivers of cars and trucks who do never anticipate a motorcycle on the highway, changing lanes immediately if they do not see a larger vehicle in the lane.

While head-on collision is a major cause of fatality among motorcyclists, there are many other forms of mishaps that can severely injure and leave them with an amputated limb or permanent disability. It is a sad fact, however, that so many of these accidents are actually due to negligence or carelessness of the riders themselves, by the driver of the other motor vehicle involved or by someone who never really did his/her job (like a city or local government personnel in charge of keeping roads safe from accidents). These acts of negligence or carelessness are followed by many different kinds of wrong results: poor riding skills; drunk riding; collision with fixed objects (such as a lamp post or railings); overspeeding; lane splitting (an occasion wherein a motorcycle rider passes between two slow-moving or stopped vehicles, like during heavy traffic flows); a driver (of another vehicle) failing to notice an approaching motorcycle while making a left-hand turn; other vehicles denying motorcyclists their right of way; another vehicle tailgating a motorcycle; poor vehicle visibility and/or stability during inclement weathers; defective roads; roads not cleared of hazards; and so forth.

Since negligence can be dispelled through simple acts of diligence, a negligent or careless act resulting to an accident is, therefore, very much preventable. However, being someone else’s fault, the victim has the right to pursue legal action against the liable party for whatever present and future damages his or her injuries may result to. Seeking the assistance of a highly-qualified personal injury lawyer or motorcycle accident lawyer may help the victim know and understand his or her legal rights and options.

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Posted by on Mar 18, 2016 in Car Insurance | 0 comments

How to Find the Best Car Insurance Policy that Suits your Budget and Specific Coverage Needs

New Hampshire and Virginia are the only two states that allow their drivers to show financial responsibility through state-allowed means in lieu of having car insurance. In New Hampshire, it is enough that drivers deposit cash or post a bond with the state to be able to comply with the state’s Motor Vehicle Financial Responsibility requirements; in Virginia, on the other hand, drivers may simply pay the uninsured motor vehicle fee to their state’s Department of Motor Vehicles.

Financial responsibility refers to a driver’s capability to pay for damages in the case of an at-fault accident. In the US, the most common way to prove this capability is by purchasing car liability insurance.

The type of auto liability insurance required of drivers depends on what is mandated by their state. There are, however, two major types of insurance policies: the tort insurance coverage and the “no-fault” insurance coverage. Tort insurance coverage, which is mandated in the 38 tort states, allows victims of accident to bring legal charges against the at-fault driver. The purpose of these legal charges is to seek compensation which will cover cost of medical treatment, loss of income, and pain and suffering. Compensation is to be paid by the at-fault driver’s insurance provider.

In no-fault states, however, compensation is paid by the respective insurance providers of the drivers involved in the accident, regardless of whose fault the accident is. Without the need to seek compensation from the at-fault driver, no lawsuit, therefore, needs to be filed by the victim. There are nine states where the no-fault coverage is required: Florida, Hawaii, Kansas, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, New York, North Dakota and Utah. The remaining three states of Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Kentucky also recognize the no-fault coverage; however, these states allow their drivers to purchase the tort policy if they rather choose to.

According to the Insurance Research Council, millions of drivers rather choose to discontinue paying their insurance premiums after they have renewed their driver’s license and car registration. This is more costly and risky. If drivers really need to have coverage but do not want to pay for an expensive policy, then they can ask any independent car insurance firm for insurance quotes. These quotes are intended to help drivers find the rate that best suits their budget and individual coverage needs. Besides being truly helpful and effective, these quotes are also free.

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Posted by on Oct 9, 2015 in Driving Hazards | 0 comments

Hours of Service Violations by Trucking Companies

Drivers of 18-wheelers have a large responsibility when they are on roadways. According to this West Palm Beach personal injury attorneys website, due to their immense size and weight, accidents that may be a simple fender-bender with two regular size vehicles can become serious when a semi-truck is involved. One of the most common causes of truck accidents is truck driver error caused by fatigue. While there are laws in place to regulate the amount of hours a truck driver can work, many employers blatantly ignore them and overwork their truck drivers, leading to severe exhaustion that can cause unsafe driving behavior.

The federal laws that are in place to set the rules for truck driver hours are known as hours of service rules. These rules indicate that a truck driver can only drive 14 hours a day, with no more than 11 of those hours being consecutive. An hours of service violation occurs when a truck driver goes over the hourly limit or does not allow enough time in between shifts. Innocent drivers of the road can be put in danger when these laws are violated. Common risky driving behaviors caused by an overly tired truck driver include swerving on the road, not stopping in time for stop signs or stop lights, or failing to check blind spots before changing lanes. One of the most severe consequences that can occur is a truck driver falling asleep behind the wheel. When these actions are committed by a truck driver, the accidents that occur can be catastrophic. A collision between a regular vehicle and an 18-wheeler can cause serious injuries and even death.

While driving alongside 18-wheelers is a common occurrence, accidents involving them should not be. Thousands of people are put in danger when truck drivers take the wheel overly fatigued. Even worse, the accidents that occur as a result are often preventable if the company had simply followed the law.

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Posted by on May 12, 2015 in Dangerous Consumer Products, Injury | 0 comments

When Doctors and Pharmaceutical Companies Go Wrong

When a serious illness puts a person’s life on the line the only source of salvation that may come to that person’s mind may be a doctor. A doctor, who is well trained and deeply knowledgeable about the human body and health, and who can have access to so many of the technological advances in the field of medicine, would only naturally be thought of as definitely capable of providing the needed effective treatment for any type of illness. Reality, however, clearly shows that this is not the case; and rather than just a big number of doctors causing new health problems than providing medical solutions, it is obvious that there is another source of problem, something bigger than doctors that the government and the medical community need to be aware of – the pharmaceutical firms.

More than 750,000 deaths due to poor medical care are recorded in the US every year. These include millions of: unnecessary prescriptions; people being subjected to surgical procedures which are actually not needed; and, people being confined in hospitals despite the lack of absence or need for it.

Though such are clearly doctor errors, there are more cases recorded, which involve adverse effects of prescription drugs or medical devices. These are usually due to drugs that have not been fully tested, yet are claimed safe and effective by their manufacturers.

One specific device, which is manufactured by the American company Intuitive Surgical Inc. and approved by the US Food and Drug Administration in the year 2000, is the da Vinci Surgical System, a multi-armed robotic surgical equipment designed to help surgeons perform minimally-invasive surgical procedures easily, fast and accurately.

This robotic surgical equipment gained immediate success not only in the US but in Europe and Asia as well and the only thing holding back many other hospitals from acquiring it is the unit’s more than $1 million cost.

The da Vinci Surgical device requires very small (multiple) incisions, about 1-2 cm, compared to the 5 – 7 inches long or even 12 inches long (depending on the type of surgery to be performed) incision that an open surgery requires. And with very tiny openings, this could only mean fast-healing wounds, much shorter recovery time, very little loss of blood, and much lesser pain.

Not very long after the device’s use, however, reports of injuries and deaths began to be linked to it. These reports also made mention of device malfunction, internal scarring, injury to tissues or organs, doctors’ lack of experience in properly operating the device, and so forth.

Many lawsuits have already been filed against the da Vinci’s manufacturer, including those by families of patients who have already died even some years after the device was used on them. There are injuries and deaths that may have possible links to the da Vinci surgical device, considering that it has been used in thousands of procedures on prostate removal and hysterectomies alone.

The da Vinci Surgical System is not the only problem that authorities should worry about, though, for millions more also get injured or die every year due to the use of prescription drugs. According to the website of law firm Williams Kherkher, three of these drugs, which are the basis of many lawsuits in various US courts, are Actos, Depakote, and Risperdal.

Actos (also called Pioglitazone), is an oral drug for Type 2 diabetes patients. It helps increase patients’ sensitivity to insulin as well as helps them control their blood sugar level. Within 10 years after it acquired the FDA’s approval in 1999, the drug became one of the most prescribed medications in the US, simultaneously gaining recognition in France and Germany. But studies and actual cases revealed Actos’ real effects, which included risk of heart failure, liver failure, tract infection, upper respiratory infection, macular edema, lactic acidosis, diarrhea, muscle pain and death.

Depakote and Risperdal, on the other hand, were approved for the treatment of bipolar disorder. While Depakote was formulated to lessen or totally prevent severe epileptic seizures, to treat manic episodes linked to bipolar disorder and to prevent attacks of migraine, Risperdal was prepared as effective treatment for the symptoms of autism, schizophrenia and bipolar disorder.

Though both drugs seemed totally safe for some time, both, like Actos, also began to be linked to serious side-effects. For Depakote, the reported side-effects included pancreatitis, liver toxicity, confusion, unusual bruising or bleeding, and the risk of delivering a dead child or a child with a birth defect. For Risperdal, the effects were: stroke or stroke-like occurrences; Tardive Dyskinesia, a disorder in the central nervous system that results to uncontrolled movements of the limbs and twitching of the tongue and face; Neuroleptic Malignant Syndrome (NMS), a potentially deadly disorder that is characterized by irregularity in one’s pulse and blood pressure; and, death.

The right of patients (or their families) to file a personal injury lawsuit for the possible compensation that they may be legally entitled to receive. Both law firms also recommend the hiring of a seasoned lawyer, who will help the victim receive no less than the full amount of compensation that he or she is legally entitled to.

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