The Most Tragic Accidents of the Road

Posted by on Oct 22, 2016 in Truck Accidents | 0 comments

In April of 2015, five nursing students headed to St. Joseph’s Hospital in Savannah for their final clinical rotation of the school year all died after a tractor-trailer failed to slow down and crashed their car; two other students (in another vehicle) were also injured in the fatal accident that involved seven vehicles. The cause of the fatal crash was never known as the driver of the tractor-trailer fled after the accident; weather, according to police authorities, was definitely not a factor though.

Another accident, which happened in May of 2016, but which also involved a 18-wheeler, killed a 52-year old man while he was in his hotel room (at the first floor of the Studio 6 Hotel in El Paso, Texas). The 18-wheeler, which was hauling steel railroad tracks, drove through several parking lots before crashing into the hotel.

Thousands of other fatal truck accidents have been told in the news and posted in the Internet; some are just too scary and emotional to recount, especially for the families the victims left behind. If trucks are so dangerous, then why are these allowed to remain on the road and continue to be threats to other vehicles, especially smaller ones.

In 2013 alone, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) said that fatal accidents involving trucks numbered to 3,964, while those that caused injuries were 95,000. These accidents and injuries were caused by 73,000 of the 2 million semi-trucks that operated on US roads and highways.

Trucks transport close to 70% of all goods in the U.S., from manufacturing plants to distribution centers; these goods, which include finished products and raw materials, are part of what keeps the U.S. economy alive and growing. This is the main reason why trucks, despite the threat these pose on the road, will never be denied their operation.

Truck accidents, according to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) are mostly due to truck driver errors, errors, some of which include: driver fatigue; driving too fast for road conditions; impairment due to prescription or over-the-counter-drugs; unfamiliarity with the road; inattention; driving distractions; improper way of attaching the trailer; failure of the driver to double-check blind spots; and, failure to ensure that the brakes are in good working condition before hitting the road.

The size of trucks alone, according to the Chris Mayo Law Firm, strictly require truck drivers and trucking companies to exercise the strictest caution and control in the operation of these vehicles. Unfortunately, not all take these responsibilities seriously.

As explained by the Houston injury lawyers with Williams Kherkher, while all motorists have the duty to safely and properly operate their vehicles in a manner that will not cause harm to others on the road, truck drivers have an even greater responsibility due to the devastating amount of damage their vehicle can cause in accidents. Not all truck drivers, however, fulfill this important duty, sometimes making reckless decisions that endanger the lives and well-being of innocent drivers on the road.

A Rhinelander injury attorney explains how getting injured in a truck accident can create immense financial stress. Besides the physical and emotional trauma cause by the injuries, there will be the problem of paying for medical bills and the issue of lost wages.

For all the damages and losses a victim may suffer due to the injuries sustained in a truck accident, any law firm or personal injury lawyer will never think twice advising a victim to immediately seek the services of a seasoned personal injury lawyer or truck accident lawyer who can help determine if the (victim’s) case is worth pursuing legally.

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Overtime Work: Who are Eligible to Render It?

Posted by on Oct 21, 2016 in Overtime Pay | 0 comments

Overtime pay is payment given to employees for the extra hours that they render in excess of their required work shift, which is usually eight hours a day or 40 hours per week. Overtime pay is hard-earned money for many rank-and-file employees whose regular pay is sometimes just enough or barely sufficient to sustain their daily needs. Not all employees are entitled to render overtime work, though; thus, those who are eligible to render it, known as “nonexempt” employees, take advantage of it as often as they can.

“Exempt” employees, or those not eligible to render overtime, include, but are not limited to: those occupying administrative or executive positions; professional employees paid on a salary basis; volunteer workers; independent contractors; salespeople whose work is outside the office; those employed in recreational or seasonal amusement businesses, and employees in conference centers or organized camps which operate less than seven months in a year; some switchboard operators; seamen; newspaper deliverers; and, criminal investigators.

Employees in firms that are covered by a state’s overtime law, also called the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 (FLSA) or Wages and Hours Bill, are automatically non-exempt employees. The FLSA, which the US Congress passed in 1938, directs businesses and sets the regulations regarding child labor, record-keeping, overtime pay and minimum wage; it was enacted to benefit every employee, full-time or part-time, whether in a private or public firm. In connection to this overtime law or FLSA, the Portal-to-Portal Act was also executed (in 1947). This Act states that any work performed on behalf of the employer is work that ought to be compensated.

Besides ensuring that employees are never taken advantage of by their employers, the FLSA stipulates the eight-hour workday and the 40-hour work week to allow employees to work productively, while giving them enough time with their families, as well as enough time for proper rest. Increasing an employee’s work hours can mean denying him or her enough time with his or her family, as well as enough time for the needed rest and relaxation that keep him or her sane and renewed every time he or she goes back to work duties.

While protecting the rights of employees, the FLSA is also meant to benefit businesses too rather than undermine their interest and profitability. Thus, any attempt of an employer to violate the rights of non-exempt employees to overtime work and pay should be dealt with legally to give to employees what they rightfully deserve and to end such unjust practice in the workplace.

As explained in the website of the law firm Cary Kane LLP, employees, like those in New York City, are protected by both federal and state laws mandating that people be fairly compensated. Under these laws, people are guaranteed at least a minimum wage for work they do and, in certain cases, for one and a half times their hourly wage for work performed in excess of 40 hours during a week. Unfortunately, wage theft – paying people less than the law requires – is rampant.

Employees who feel that they are being cheated in their wage or are being denied to render overtime or are not compensated for their overtime work will only have everything to gain if they decide to consult with a seasoned Unpaid Overtime or Wages Lawyer to end the unfair labor practice that is being committed against them. This will also help ensure that the same unlawful practice is never committed on anyone else.

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How to Have a Criminal Charge Dismissed or Reduced In Severity

Posted by on Oct 20, 2016 in Criminal Defense | 0 comments

In 2010, an estimated $528 billion was spent by the government for Medicare, according to the U.S. Congressional Budget Office. Medicare is a Federal health insurance program created for the benefit of the elderly (at least 65 years old), certain younger Americans with disabilities, and those suffering from End-Stage Renal Disease (ERSD), a permanent kidney failure that requires dialysis or a transplant. The U.S. Government’s Office of Management and Budget, however, believes that about $47.9 billion of the total amount spent had been paid to fraudulent claims – both a correct and erroneous belief, though, since while it is true that there has been fraudulent claims, the amount is not as big as $47.9 billion.

Medicaid and Medicare are two programs of the government that are designed to provide medical and health-related services to particular groups of people in the U.S. Though each program differs with regard to their beneficiaries, both fall under the management of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, a branch of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

The billions of dollars that the government loses due to fraudulent Medicare claims has spurred authorities to intensify the fight against Medicare fraud, to the point, however, of suspecting fraud where there is actually none.

Suspicion of fraud can easily be reported to the Office of the Inspector General. The problem with this procedure is that anyone can be complained about, with those getting reported, despite actually not being guilty, can suffer loss of patient trust and professional credibility.

A Medicare fraud allegation is a very serious matter since, worse than facing imprisonment and heavy fines, a mere charge can stick with you and destroy your present and future life. Due to this, a Baton Rouge criminal defense attorney wisely advises any alleged individual to seek the help of a seasoned Medicare fraud defense attorney who is capable of delivering a comprehensive defense that can save a person from getting convicted. The Law Offices of Mark T. Lassiter likewise explains that, with the help of an experienced criminal defense attorney, any criminal charge may either be dismissed or reduced in severity.

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No Matter What an Employer Thinks, If an Employee’s Injury is Work-related, then He/She has Rights to Workers’ Compensation Benefits

Posted by on Oct 19, 2016 in Workers' Compensation | 0 comments

Records from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries (CFOI) show that in 2013 and 2014, fatal work-related accidents numbered to 4,585 and 4,679, respectively.

In 1970, the Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSH Act) was approved by the U.S. Congress with the primary aim of ensuring the creation of a safe and healthy environment for all types of employees. This task is being enforced by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), which was established in 1971 as an off-shoot of OSH Act. Thus, under OSHA rules, employers all across the U.S. are mandated to make sure that their employees are provided with a safe and healthy working environment. Violation of this mandate, whether intentionally or due to negligence, can mean legal problems for concerned employers.

Accidents in the workplace, which cause injuries or death, do occur. Back during the beginning of the 20th century, accidents almost always left injured workers, especially those in the industrial firms, in financial difficulties since they received no financial assistance from their employers. Without pay, due to inability to work, plus cost of medicine and medical treatment, workers had no other choice but to file a lawsuit against their employers for the mere purpose of seeking financial assistance since their injury was job-related – a lawsuit which, sadly, so many lost.

The passing into law of the Workers’ Compensation Insurance Program changed workers’ plight because under this law, if their injury or illness is work-related, then they are entitled to claim cash benefits that will cover medical treatment, lost wages, rehabilitation, disability and even funeral expenses in case of death (it may also include payment of benefits to survivors of workers killed on the job).

Workers’ Compensation is mandated and administered by the state. States require that employers make Workers’ Compensation coverage a part of employee benefits to make sure that injured employees have a source of cash if ever they are harmed in a workplace accident.

Often, however, employers and insurance providers make it so hard for injured workers to claim the benefits they are legally entitled to. The reason, clearly, is higher cost on the part of employers, meaning, the more workers getting injured or the higher the amount of benefits being claimed by an injured worker, the higher the insurance premiums the employer will have to pay.

As explained by the Champaign/Urbana workers’ compensation attorneys of Spiros Law, P.C., without workers’ compensation benefits, men and women who get injured due to work will find it incredibly difficult just to get by with their daily needs. This is why the law firm Hach & Rose emphasizes that injuries that occur on the job render a worker eligible for financial assistance to help them cope with these injuries’ consequences.

Employees who sustain work-related injuries or illnesses have all the right to file a claim with the Workers’ Comp for the benefits that will help protect them financially. It can be to their benefit if they would seek help from a highly-qualified Workers’ Compensation lawyer who will be able to help them get the approval they need for the application for benefits.

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Car Defects Can Destroy not Only Properties but People’s Lives Too

Posted by on Oct 18, 2016 in Vehicle Defects | 0 comments

General Motors (GM) has already recalled more than 15 million cars this year, because of a problem with ignition switches that has resulted in at least 19 deaths. During the last quarter of the same year, another problem was reported involving GM’s 2013-2015 Cadillac XTS and 2014-2015 Chevrolet Impala. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), these two GM vehicle models has brake-indicator lights that fail to illuminate when the brake is not retracted completely. Brake pads which remain partially engaged with the rotors, as explained by the NHTSA, can cause excessive brake heat that may result in a fire. This problem has prompted GM to recall another 221,558 of its vehicles.

Problems with ignition switches and brakes are just two of the hundreds of reasons that have led to the recall of millions of vehicles in the past. A handful of other car or car part defects include defective tires, poor steering & suspension, steering components that break suddenly causing partial or complete loss of vehicle control, wheels that crack or break, windshield wiper assemblies that fail to operate properly, tires with tread that separated from the steel belt, and defective safety belts, buckles, or components child safety seats.

The biggest recall in the history of the car industry, however, involves exploding driver-side airbags that has already been linked to seven deaths and more than 100 injuries. These defective airbags has resulted to the recall of more than 53 million vehicles worldwide; about 34 million of the

vehicles recalled were in the U.S.

As emphasized in the website of the law firm Wilson & McQueen, PLLC, manufacturers are required by law to design and engineer cars that meet a minimum safety standard. While advancements are being made every day to improve the safety and efficiency of automobiles on the road, problems with the design and functionality of the cars themselves remain to be one of the top causes of car accidents on the road. Car or car parts manufacturers should be held liable for injuries sustained in accidents that are due to car defects or mechanical failures.

According to the Houston personal injury attorneys from Williams Kherkher, injuries can cause extensive medical bills, lost wages from work, long-term disability, and major lifestyle and family-life changes. Though victims are often left shouldering accident-related expenses on their own, this should never be the case, especially if the cause of the accident was not due to their fault. If may benefit an accident victim to seek help from a seasoned personal injury lawyer (immediately after an accident) for help in evaluating his or her your case and in determining if he or she has grounds to pursue legal action against the party responsible for the accident.

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