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How To Sue For A Miscarriage

Posted by on 12:51 pm in Uncategorized | Comments Off on How To Sue For A Miscarriage

There is nothing that can take back the trauma you have experienced from losing your unborn child as a result of an accident. However, if the accident is found to have been directly responsible for you having experienced a miscarriage, you may still be able to seek damages.  What You Can Sue For The damages you can sue for after losing a child as a result of the accident include: Pain and suffering Loss of wages Medical expenses Also, the father may be able to sue for mental anguish based on the age of the fetus at the time of the accident. For instance, in Florida, a fetus that is 41 weeks old can be the subject of a successful lawsuit by a father over pain and suffering. Miscarriages And Worker’s Compensation If you have decided to continue working while pregnant and you suffer an injury at work that leads you to suffer a miscarriage, this is one factor that might contribute to your ability to obtain damages from a worker’s compensation claim. You may not only receive full compensation for medical care, but you may also receive death benefits. If you experienced post-traumatic stress disorder as a result of the accident and the loss of your child, this may also be used as justification to be awarded damages. Proving That The Defendant Caused Your Miscarriage To prove that the defendant was responsible for the accident, it must first be established that there was duty of care. In other words, the defendant must have a responsibility to create a safe environment that would have prevented you from experiencing a miscarriage. Then, the defendant must have breached this duty. One of the complications of a miscarriage is that it is sometimes difficult to establish that certain actions lead to the miscarriage. For example, certain actions may have startled you and created stress that was sufficient enough to create a miscarriage. Events that may seem trivial when not pregnant might have contributed to the loss of the fetus. Therefore, you will need assistance from a personal injury attorney who is experienced with handling these cases. A doctor will need to investigate the moment in which the miscarriage occurred and will also need to investigate what might have caused the miscarriage. Then, you will need to demonstrate, with medical evidence, that the miscarriage would not have occurred without the breach of duty of care.  For further assistance, contact a local personal injury lawyer, such as one from Elliott & MacLean...

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How The Settlement Process Works When You Make A Claim After An Auto Accident

Posted by on 10:12 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on How The Settlement Process Works When You Make A Claim After An Auto Accident

Many people are curious about how the settlement process works during a personal injury case. The truth is they don’t always work precisely the same way, but there are certainly a few things you can expect. If you’re in a car accident, you need to contact an auto accident attorney. From there, the process will begin. Before Requesting a Settlement Amount The first step is to gather information and figure out just how much to ask for as a settlement. At this point, you can help your attorney a great deal by providing him or her with everything they ask you for. In general, you and your lawyer will need to come up with the following: All bills you accrued related to the accident (medical and other expenses) All information from doctors and other professionals related to your condition Receipts for things you purchased since the accident The names and contact info for all witnesses you can think of The names and contact info for people you saw before, during, or right after the accident All job related correspondence All of these things will go towards figuring out your settlement amount. Do not procrastinate on getting any of this information to your attorney. You may also want to keep a journal or diary from the day of your accident. This can help establish or corroborate your mental state. It’s not necessary, but in some cases it can help with figuring out how much to ask for pain and suffering. Your initial settlement request should include all of the following: Medical expenses (and future medical expenses) Lost earnings (and potential lost earnings) Other economic loses (such as damaged property) Intangibles (pain and suffering) After you and your attorney figure it all out, your attorney will attempt to negotiate with the insurance company of the negligent party. The Negotiations In order to negotiate properly, your attorney will likely submit a settlement request for an amount higher than the one the two of you came up with. In an ideal situation, the insurance company will accept the settlement offer and you will receive the funds you asked for. If the insurance company doesn’t accept the initial settlement offer immediately, several things can occur. The insurance company can, Argue against your version of the story Ask that you see a doctor chosen by them Ask to see the evidence or ask for a deposition Make a counter offer This process can go on for some time, and it’s where many cases can become bogged down. This is especially true because the correspondence between your attorney and the insurance company will occur mainly through the mail with lengthy dates attached to when either party can respond by. If all of these things end with no settlement, then you must either drop the case, or take it to trial. The insurance company also has the option of skipping straight to trial as well. The trial is a whole other thing, but the settlement process can still occur during a trial. You Need Representation Notice that all of this involves an attorney. Attempting the settlement process on your own is not something you should ever consider. Remember the insurance company has lawyers, and all those lawyers do is deal with cases such as yours. You need...

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Top 10 Reasons To Have A Real Estate Lawyer For Home Purchases

Posted by on 4:26 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Top 10 Reasons To Have A Real Estate Lawyer For Home Purchases

If the dream of owning your own home is about to come true for you, before you put in that offer for purchase you might need to take a step back and consider hiring a real estate attorney. Having an expert in real estate law on your side could make the path to being a homeowner far smoother and stress-free, especially for first-time buyers. Read on to find out the top 10 reasons to hire a real estate attorney. 1.  The offer to purchase document (your offer to the current owners) is often simply a fill-in-the-blank type form, and may not address specific or unusual areas of concern about your home-to-be. An attorney will be able to review the document to ensure that it truly addresses all of your needs. 2.  Few pre-buying tasks are more important than a title search. Make sure you have a lawyer to oversee this job and to help ensure that your new home is free of encumbrances. 3.  A survey of your potential property will be required by the mortgage company, and a real estate attorney can help you to have a clear understanding of how easements give access to your property for private parties, utility companies, and municipalities. 4.  It’s important to have full comprehension of how your new home is being financed, and having a neutral party by your side to advise you can help ensure that you understand this long-term financial commitment. 5.  Closings can be complicated and confusing, so it’s vital to have an attorney present to protect your rights and advise you if a last-minute issue arises at this meeting. 6.  Real estate agents may not be reliable sources of information about issues like zoning. A real estate attorney from the local area can be an invaluable source of knowledge about zoning, such as the potential for that verdant forest in back of the home to be re-zoned into something much less desirable. Zoning can also come into play if you plan to add a addition or use your home as a business location. 7.  For-sale-by-owner homes can offer a wonderful bargain, but a legal professional with your best interests in mind will be needed to ensure that all documents are correct. 8.  Probated properties, foreclosures, and short-sales all present special circumstances that require a real estate attorney’s assistance. 9.  In the event that you want to drop the offer entirely, you will need an attorney to help you avoid losing your deposit or earnest money by locating and utilizing contingencies in the offer contract. 10.  On the other hand, you will need an attorney to help protect your rights if the owner changes their mind at the last minute and refuses to sell. Buying a house can be both a joyful and overwhelming process, so make sure you have a real estate attorney by your side to help pave the way toward your dream home. For professional legal help, contact a company such as Souders Law...

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3 Things That Can Cause Your Social Security Disability Claim To Be Denied

Posted by on 4:39 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 3 Things That Can Cause Your Social Security Disability Claim To Be Denied

One of the most difficult decisions a person can make is deciding they can no longer work because of an illness or physical impairment. The good news is you can apply for social security disability benefits to help you pay your bills and buy groceries. The bad news is most claims are denied when you first apply. Here are three things that can cause your disability claim to be denied. 1. Your income is too much. Not everyone can afford to cut back their hours at work while they wait for their disability claim to be approved. Instead, they try their best to suffer through working their full-time job so they can pay their bills and have food on the table. The only problem with this is there is a limit on how much you can make while receiving disability benefits. Many don’t realize that the income limit doesn’t take effect after their claim has been approved – it is actually in place at the time of your application. The current monthly income amount the Social Security Administration (SSA) deems to be “substantial gainful activity” (SGA) is $1,090 for those who aren’t blind, and $1,820 for those who are legally blind. What that means is, in order to get and keep your disability benefits, you must have a monthly income less than those amounts. So, having an income that is equal to or exceeds the SGA amount will cause your application for benefits to be denied. 2. You don’t send in enough recent medical documentation with your application. Another thing that often leads to denial of disability benefits is you don’t send in enough recent medical documentation. The SSA needs to be able to evaluate your application based on medical evidence. They can’t just take your word for it that you have a disability that prevents you from working regularly. They need to have proof from medical professionals to back up your claims. When it comes to sending in medical documentation for your disability application, there really is no such as thing as sending too much. If it is applicable to your condition, send it in. Keep in mind that you need to send in medical records from the past six months so the SSA will know your condition is recent. However, if your condition started years ago and only recently became so bad that you couldn’t work, be sure to send in the older medical records as well. This will help provide the SSA with a timeline of your condition. Also, be sure to tell your doctor(s) that you need them to provide statements for an application for disability benefits. Simply sending in x-rays and test results won’t provide a complete picture of your condition for the SSA. A statement from your doctor(s) can help clarify certain questions the SSA may have while looking at your medical records. 3. You failed to follow your doctor’s treatment plan, which could have improved your condition. If the SSA sees that your doctor prescribed a course of treatment that would have improved your condition enough to work full-time and you refused to go along with it, they will likely deny your application. The SSA looks more favorably on those who have tried to improve their condition through their doctor’s treatment plan(s)....

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The Dos and Don’ts of Being Involved in a Hit-and-Run

Posted by on 4:29 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on The Dos and Don’ts of Being Involved in a Hit-and-Run

Nobody ever plans on being the victim of a hit-and-run car accident; unfortunately, it can happen to anybody and for a number of reasons. Perhaps the responsible driver flees because he or she was driving under the influence or didn’t have insurance. Either way, there are a few important things you’ll want to keep in mind in the event that you ever find yourself involved as a victim of a hit-and-run.  DO Contact Authorities The best thing you can do after you’re involved in a hit-and-run (aside from obviously making sure you and anybody else at the accident scene is okay) is to contact your local authorities. If possible, give a description of the driver who fled the scene (type of vehicle, color of vehicle, direction of travel, and damage sustained to the vehicle are all helpful). If you’re unsure, ask witnesses for information on the suspect that may be helpful to the police in making an arrest. DON’T Chase the Driver The last thing you should do in the event of a hit-and-run is to chase after the driver. Leaving the scene of an accident is frowned upon by most police departments–even if your reason for leaving is to chase the responsible party who fled the scene. Not to mention, you could be putting yourself in danger by trying to confront the responsible driver. Instead, remain where you are and wait for assistance to arrive. DO Obtain a Police Report Obtaining a police report is important, especially in the case of a hit-and-run. With a detailed police report, you will have the best chances of being able to receive compensation from your insurance company for the accident. Unfortunately, many car insurance companies will not even entertain a hit-and-run claim without a copy of a police report on file. DON’T Assume You’re Out of Luck Last but not least, don’t assume that just because the driver fled the scene, you’re going to be unable to receive compensation for your accident. Even if the driver is never found or he or she is found to have been driving without insurance, there’s a chance that you’ll still be covered by your own insurance company. Look at your policy statement for “uninsured or underinsured motorist” coverage; if you have this, then you should still be able to receive at least some kind of compensation for your damages and medical bills related to the accident. For assistance, talk to an attorney like Law Office Of Daniel E...

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Spousal Abuse: Important Steps To Take During Divorce Proceedings

Posted by on 5:27 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Spousal Abuse: Important Steps To Take During Divorce Proceedings

Behind closed doors, 1 in 4 women will experience domestic abuse in their lifetime. If you’re married to your abuser, taking the steps below can be overwhelming, but it’s also vital to your physical, mental, and emotional well being. Get to a Place of Physical and Emotional Safety If you are currently going through divorce and your spouse gets abusive, you need to be safe. While it’s commonly said that you should never leave your home during divorce proceedings, the safety and well being of you and your children is of utmost importance. If you’re in immediate danger, it’s time to take action as quickly as possible, even if it means leaving behind your home and your belongings. This first step can be the most difficult, which is why physical and emotional support are important. Having a strong family support can help, but it’s possible to get out of a bad situation even without such supports in place. A local women’s shelter may be able to offer you the safety and security you need while figuring out your next steps. Only once you’ve gotten to a safe, secure space should you pursue legal action. Disclose the Abuse to Your Lawyer It’s vital that you find an attorney who you feel can best represent your case, which is why disclosing the abuse to your attorney is the first thing you should do. It’s natural to want to cover up the abuse, but doing so can lead to further harm. While disclosing to your attorney isn’t easy, it can be the most important thing you’ll ever do during the divorce proceedings. While many states won’t allow you to name an at-fault party during the divorce proceedings, a history of domestic abuse can still play a large role in the distribution of property and belongings, as well as when reaching a child custody agreement. When you disclose the abuse to your attorney, they’re better able to provide you with the services and protections you need, as well as provide you with the most relevant legal advice possible. Seek the Help of a Counselor While your attorney can provide you with all necessary legal counsel pertaining to your divorce, emotional counsel and support from a certified counselor is highly recommended. Leaving an abusive marriage is a huge, disorienting step. A mental health counselor who specializes in abusive relationships and divorce can help you through this difficult time and provide you with the support you need to keep going. Domestic violence can have long lasting and debilitating effects on its victims. If you’re struggling to overcome the abuse you’ve suffered, seeking professional help is not a sign of weakness. On the contrary, seeking help for the pain you’re going through is a sign of inner strength and a will to fight. If you’re being abused by your partner, it’s time to seek out the help you need. While legal representation before, during, and after divorce proceedings is important, your safety and that of your children’s must come first. To learn more about the services and resources available to you, call the national domestic abuse hotline at 1-800-799-7233.  For more information about divorce attorneys, contact a firm like the Law office of Kristine A. Michael,...

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5 Crucial Tips for Effective and Legal Agreements for Independent Contractors

Posted by on 6:46 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 5 Crucial Tips for Effective and Legal Agreements for Independent Contractors

Independent contractors are often hired when businesses need help with tasks. This may be due to an increased workload, multiple employees taking time off, or something else entirely. Whatever the case may be, you need to develop an independent contractor agreement for you and the contractor to sign. This agreement will outline the specifics of their role as a contractor to your company. Here are five tips for ensuring your agreement is as airtight and legal as possible: 1. Make Their Classification Clear. In the agreement, you must make sure that you make the classification of your workers as contractors very clear. This is not only for your benefit and your contractor’s benefit, but for tax purposes as well. Therefore, it is crucial that you classify workers as independent contractors in the agreement and even lay out a few ground rules in regard to the contractor relationship. This could include anything from scope of control to behavioral factors. 2. Clearly Define the Scope of Work. In an independent contractor agreement, you need to make sure that the scope of work that the contractor will be performing is clearly defined. This is to distinguish the person from a typical employee. The scope of work should describe in as much detail as possible the type of work and services that will be rendered to you by the independent contractor. Deadlines should also be included, if necessary. 3. Be Very Detailed Regarding Payment. In the agreement, you also need to make payment terms clear. With independent contractors, you usually don’t pay a set hourly, weekly, or monthly salary. Instead, you will pay a straight commission or by the project or job. If the project will be split into milestones with a payment provided at each milestone, make this clear in the agreement. If the payment will be made in full at the completion and approval of the job, make it clear. 4. Clearly Specify Who Is Paying for Expenses. With many jobs for which independent contractors are hired, there are expenses to be paid. Whether this is material or fuel costs, make sure that your agreement specifies who will pay for what. As a general rule, independent contractors will pay for their own supplies and any purchases that are necessary to complete the job. However, there are instances when you may be willing to pay for a certain percentage. Whatever the case may be, it needs to be outlined in the agreement so there are no disputes later. 5. Make It Clear There Are No Employee Benefits. Unlike regular employees, independent contractors are not eligible for benefits. This includes disability insurance, health insurance, workers’ compensation, and even unemployment compensation. However, it needs to be specified in the agreement. The line between an independent contactor and an employee can get a bit blurry. Therefore, a legally binding agreement is crucial to avoiding problems in the future and keeping contractors in line. For help drafting a proper agreement, contact a business lawyer in your local area, such as one from Robert L Lilley Co...

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2 Necessities To Include In Your Company’s Employee Handbook

Posted by on 6:22 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 2 Necessities To Include In Your Company’s Employee Handbook

If your company is getting ready to expand and add dozens of new jobs, now might be the time to create an employee handbook. Employee handbooks are a great way to guide, manage, and control your employees, but they are not easy to create. If you would like to make one of these, you may want to hire a business lawyer to help you. Here are two things a lawyer might suggest including in your new handbook. Employee job performance evaluations While there are numerous items that should be included in your employee handbook, one you may want to include relates to employee job performance evaluations. An employee job performance evaluation is something you may want to complete every few months, or even just once a year. The point of including this is to let your employees know: How often these will be completed The standards used to evaluate an employee’s job performance What can potentially come from these (for example, you may want to give raises for good evaluations, but you could also know that their jobs may be in danger from poor performance evaluations) Clearly stating this information will help your employees know what is expected of them as well as the consequences for poor performance. Warning system The second crucial element you should consider adding to your employee handbook relates to the way you warn and punish employees for bad or poor behavior. This is a system you will have to set up yourself, but your lawyer can make sure that your system is created in a way that is legal, fair, and ethical. This may include a tiered system, such as: Warning – If an employee does something wrong, the employee might get warned with a write-up letter. While there may be no consequences for this, you might only issue one written warning. Time off of work – If the same employee again does something wrong, this time you might punish the employee by giving him or her an unpaid week off of work. Firing – For the third offense, you may decide to fire the person. Having a system like this will help your employees fully understand how your company operates, but you will need to make sure you follow through with the system in place for every employee you have. If you would like to learn more about employee handbooks, hire a business attorney, like those at Abom & Kutulakis LLP, to help you create a good and effective one for your...

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Minimizing The Effect Of Lawsuits On Your Small Business

Posted by on 10:21 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Minimizing The Effect Of Lawsuits On Your Small Business

The American culture is a litigious one, and anyone running a business needs be proactive about possible lawsuits. Successful businesses are targets for those with valid complaints and for those looking to make a quick dollar. Before you fall victim to legal action, take a few sensible precautions.  Minimize Your Exposure Stay away from sole proprietorship. Structuring your company as an LLC or S-Corp will protect you individually from the financial strain of lawsuits and their awards but many small business owners choose sole proprietorship’s instead. They are popular because they are the easiest way to establish your business and often only require a permit and registration with your local government to get started. You can report your business profits through a personal tax return instead of filing a separate business form, and you have complete flexibility on your hours. You can also open or close a business very quickly and with little trouble. Basically, you and your business are the same entity. You get all the profits and pay all the bills. However, you are less vulnerable to lawsuits if you incorporate. Being an LLC or S-Corp means that a judgment against your business will not touch your personal assets. You and the business are not the same entity, so you have legal protection and will not lose your home and your savings if someone sues you and wins.  Find an Attorney Before you even open the doors of you business, interview attorneys. Having a good business law professional in the wings can save you much grief if you are sued, and you probably will be. On average, a small business earning one million dollars per year will spend $20,000 on lawsuits. If possible, hire a local attorney who is familiar with the area’s customs and most importantly, the local court system. Insiders know best how to work with the local legal system, which gives you a better chance at success. Also, your lawyer can advise you if settling the lawsuit out of court is to your advantage. If you have a successful business, you will likely be sued at some point. Protecting your assets by incorporating your business and by having excellent legal representation will do much to limit your personal exposure and to keep your business safe from crushing monetary judgments. Being prepared for lawsuits is a necessary part of running a small business these days, so take these precautions and then get to work making your business...

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Estate Planning For Same-Sex Couples

Posted by on 6:06 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Estate Planning For Same-Sex Couples

Engaging in the estate planning process is a great way to ensure that your loved ones will be provided for. While the law recognizes the legal rights of married couples when it comes to probate and inheritance, gaining legal standing can be more difficult for same-sex couples. If you live in a state where the law doesn’t recognize your same-sex marriage, here are three things you can do to avoid having your estate go to court. 1. Prepare a living trust. Since your partner won’t have legal standing to lay claim to your estate if your state government doesn’t recognize your marriage, creating a living trust prior to your passing can help you avoid potential inheritance problems. A living trust is a document that designates a living trustee to oversee your property while you are still living. You can appoint a successor trustee, and this individual will inherit the right to administer the property covered by the living trust after your death. By naming your partner as the successor trustee, you can ensure that he or she will legally gain access to your assets without having to fight in a court of law. 2. Move your financial assets into a payable-on-death bank account. If you have amassed significant financial holdings, you will likely want your partner to have access to this money in the event of your death. Keeping money out of probate is easy when you make the choice to store your financial assets in a payable-on-death bank account. Payable-on-death accounts are designed to give your designated beneficiary complete access to your accounts after you pass, without involving probate courts. All you need to do to complete this simple estate planning step is fill out a form naming your partner as your designated beneficiary. Forms are provided by your banking institution, just ask a teller for assistance. 3. Establish joint ownership of major assets. Real assets (like real estate, vehicles, or valuable artwork) should always be owned through joint tenancy if you and your partner want to avoid probate. When drafting the deed or title to any real assets you and your partner acquire, be sure that you are both listed as owners on the paperwork. Having both your names on the paperwork will ensure that, upon your death, the asset will legally pass into the sole ownership of your partner. Probate court hearings are not required for jointly-owned assets, since the death of one owner immediately transfers all rights to the surviving owner.  Since the law doesn’t favor the rights of same-sex couples when it comes to probate matters, it is important to engage in the proper estate planning steps to prevent issues after your death. Taking the time to create a living will, move financial assets to a payable-on-death bank account, and ensure that all real property is jointly owned you and your partner will be prepared to provide for one another after death without court interference. For more information, call a professional like George M Cappello,...

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