DUI Accidents and Personal Injury and Insurance Claims

Just about every state in the US has their own laws regarding drunk driving, often known as DUI or DWI (driving while intoxicated). DUI is considered as one of the leading causes of deaths for road accidents, and the penalties are often very stiff and long-lasting. When you have been injured or involved in a car accident due to the other driver being under the influence of alcohol or illegal substance, it may be easier to get compensation after you have filed for a personal injury claim.

Filing for a personal injury claim against the offending party and their insurance company would be smoother. First thing to do in order to have compensation for all the damages and injuries you have suffered is to file a claim to the offending party’s insurance company. According to the website of Williams Kherker, before going to the court to file a personal injury lawsuit, it may be better to talk with the offending driver’s insurance company for a possible settlement. The law requires every driver to carry at least the minimum amount needed for car insurance. Informing the insurance company about your plan to talk about possibly reaching a settlement before going to court may even be a more fruitful decision, as many insurance companies would rather settlement a claim than have it brought up to court.

Filing a third-party claim would possibly yield even more compensation than going to court, especially if the offending driver is has a DUI conviction from the court. Drunk driving is heavily frowned upon, and most judge or jury often give harsher penalties or fines against the offending driver for their negligent actions that caused harm or danger to other motorists or pedestrians. Most often than not the verdict is in favor of the victim, and the offending driver and their insurance company would end up paying more. This is the main reason why many insurance companies prefer to have a settlement because they will not have to pay as much. This is also in your best interest, as going to court may cost money and time. In order to have fair settlement and to determine how much is the right compensation, it is advised to consult and even hire a personal injury lawyer to cover the laws that may affect your case.

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Get The Most From Your Experience With Your Lawyer

Engaging the services of a lawyer is something that many people seem to dread. The fact is, however, that there are many attorneys who are qualified, talented and able to provide very valuable services. By reading the information that follows below, you will have what it takes to identify those practitioners and develop terrific relationships that can save you lots of time, money and hassle over the course of your life.

Think about retaining an attorney before you ever need his services. By doing so, you avoid pressure and can search out a trustworthy lawyer who will suit your needs. Keep a good lawyer on retainer so you can get legal advice anytime you need.

According to the website of Pohl & Berk, you have a right to expect clear, consistent communication with your lawyer. He or she should be able to give you a general summery of what you can expect in terms of your case, as well as what potential issues might arise and what could be done to remedy these issues.

When choosing a lawyer, word of mouth is one of the best ways to find one. Ask friends or relatives for recommendations. They can give you honest feedback on their experience. They can tell you how well or poorly they did in their situation. This feedback can help you choose wisely.

You need to know what your legal budget is before you hire a lawyer. You have to include in this the time spent away from work, if you don’t get paid for it, to ensure you have enough to pay your bills. Include travel costs, phone bills and other expenses which might come along.

Lawyers tend to carry an unfortunate reputation in the minds of many. But, by taking some time to learn about various practice areas and what makes for a truly great attorney, it is possible to find someone with whom you are entirely comfortable and in whom you can place your full trust. The information found in the piece above is a terrific resource for doing just that.

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A Wrinkle-free Face through Botox

Recession or no recession, it seems that millions of American men and women are focused on and devoted to the same positive concern – looking and feeling their best all the time. Records from the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) clearly show this, through the steady rise in the number of cosmetic procedures internists and cosmetic surgeons perform annually.

Since 2010, the number of procedures performed has only continued to go further up 10 million, with Botulinum toxin type A (or simply Botox), being the number one minimally-invasive cosmetic procedure for the last 13 years (since the year 2000). In 2010, Botox procedures were recorded at 2,437,165; in 2012, the number jumped up to 4,125,179.

So much for the numbers, but what really makes Americans go nuts over Botox treatment? Well, basically, it’s the youthful skin that gives them a fresher and younger look which, in turn, make them feel good and more confident.

The use of injectable botulinum toxin type A or Botox was approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on April 12, 2002, to treat: crow’s feet or squint lines, which develop at the corner of the eyes; wrinkles on the forehead; platysmal muscle bands on the neck; and, the lines on the eyebrows. The solution, which can decrease muscle contraction or muscle activity, is injected into the targeted parts and where muscle activity is absent, it would mean greatly reduced chances of developing lines and/or wrinkles.

Botox comes from a poisonous bacterium called clostridium botulinum. This deadly bacterium is the known cause of botulism, a deadly type of infirmity. Though poisonous, physicians found a medical use for it, one of which is the now very famous Botox treatment.

The lines that Botox can treat are said to be limited, though, for it has no effect on nasolabial folds (also called smile/laugh lines), the creases of skin running from the corners of the nose down to the sides of the mouth. Another treatment that makes use of a different substance, Juvéderm, a gel-like dermal filler, particularly, takes care of these folds. And cosmetic/aesthetic surgeons believe that when Juvéderm treatment is combined with Botox, then the results can only be remarkably stunning.

Before a Botox procedure is performed, a patient or client should be made to understand what he/she can expect during and after the treatment. This is necessary as implied in an article posted in the website of Bergman Folkers Plastic Surgery; it will also pave the way for ultimate beautiful results that can even exceed client’s expectations.

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Supplemental Security Income Benefits for Children with Disabilities

Supplemental Security Insurance (SSI) benefits are not only aimed for adults: they can also be given to children whose parents earn a low income. SSI for children is available provided that your child is under the age of 18 and is either physically or mentally disabled and the disability have resulted to a significant level of functional limitations. The child should be either blind or disabled to be eligible for SSI benefits. It can either be in-born or developed and persisted before the child reached the age of 22.

SSI benefits are immediately given to applicants whose disabilities are serious enough to meet the necessary SSA disability standards. In the past 25 years, there has been an increase in the number of recipients, albeit because of the implementation changes on the program. The incomes as well as resources of the child and the parents (along with the other people in the household) are considered if an SSI benefits application is filed. Once the application has been reviewed as a possible candidate for SSI benefits, the Disability Determination Services will bring together necessary evidence that could help determine the disability benefits. Usually the DDS requires 12 months of medical history, along with function, in order to judge the claim.

It can be frustrating to process the SSI benefits, and most often parents find themselves almost at the brink of giving up. When this happens it would always help to consult and acquire the representation of a legal disability lawyer. It also helps to discuss the matter with the disability examiner. Another thing to remember is to always keep your appointments with the DDS. If a consultative exam is asked by the DDS, avoid being late to the exam and try to arrive 10-15 minutes earlier (since being late can forfeit your appointment with the provider).

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Workplace Injury

According to the website of the Woodson Law Firm, employers are responsible for maintaining functional and safe work environments for their employees. The importance of this responsibility multiplies exponentially when the work premises require the usage of specialized, potentially dangerous, machinery. Businesses that commonly deal with specialized machinery are construction companies, oil companies, and transportation companies. These industrial habitats require that employees display excellent knowledge of particular machinery and adhere to safety protocol when managing equipment.

The Occupational Safety Health Administration (OSHA), a division of the United States Department of Labor, advocates for workers health and safety. OSHA has passed some standards that protect workers who experience injury, like amputation or head and spinal cord trauma, while at the workplace. In addition to helping workers that experience injury, OSHA advises employers to safeguard the workplace. Upkeep of equipment, structural maintenance, and hazardous chemical storage are all precautions that employers must be sure to make in order to protect employees and the company. OSHA inspects industrial workplaces in order to determine amendments that employers need to make in order to create safer environments.

However, sometimes due to negligence or in attempts to save money, employers don’t maintain safe working conditions. This can leave the employee extremely vulnerable if they’re operating a defective machine or working in close proximity to volatile chemicals. When a Florida worker was trapped in a machine and lost his arm at the elbow, OSHA inspected the company grounds and administered 14 violations to the company, Prologix Distributions Services-East LLP. In the event of a catastrophic workplace injury, like an amputation, the victim is entitled to financial compensation from the employer. In addition to money lost from missing work and hospital costs, a serious injury compromises the quality of the injured workers job prospects.

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Trashed Kidney Leads to Suit Against UTMC

A part-time nurse from a university hospital threw away a kidney earmarked for transplant to a 24-year-old patient, prompting a medical malpractice suit against the hospital.

Donating a kidney to someone with end-stage renal disease is tantamount to giving the recipient a new lease in life, especially if it is a perfect match. This was what was supposed to happen to siblings Paul and Sarah Fudacz from Ohio. Sarah, 24 years old, was supposed to get a kidney from her brother to get her off the dialysis machine, but by some horrible oversight the newly-removed kidney was thrown out with the contents of a slush machine used during the extraction procedure at the University of Toledo Medical Center (UTMC). The nurse has since resigned.

The Fudacz family filed a medical malpractice lawsuit against UTMC, citing the pain and suffering the family had to go through from the wasted sacrifice and pain of Paul, the continued ill-health of Sarah, and the uncertainty of the family finding a suitable replacement kidney in time to save Sarah’s life. UTMC admits the error but maintains that the hospital did not have a substandard quality of medical care. There is some question whether the family has a legal basis for the claim under Ohio law.

UTMC has since stepped up the quality of health care and level of patient safety.

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The Most Dangerous Place to Work

You expect your workplace to be safe, especially since it’s where you spend most of your day. According to a recent study, healthcare is the most dangerous industry to work. This is especially sad considering these people spend their days serving others. Forty-five percent of workplace incidents occur in the healthcare industry, with more than 650,000 people falling ill or injured each year. Overexertion related to pulling, pushing, holding, carrying, and lifting remains the most common workplace injury, and is one of the top reasons that healthcare workers leave the industry. These workers often rank alongside manufacturers and laborers in terms of musculoskeletal injuries because of overexertion from handling patients. Weight, such as a 100 pound patient, would be lifted with mechanical support in other industries, but is often handled manually by healthcare professionals.

Manufacturing was commonly viewed as the most dangerous industry to work in, with risks of slip and falls, lifting injuries, and equipment malfunctions. However, the 152,000 manufacturing injuries each year are a small fraction of the yearly healthcare incidents. Despite this overwhelming majority, health care facilities received about 2,500 OSHA inspections while construction sites received around 52,000 in 2011.

No matter what industry you may work in, there is always a risk of injury or illness. However, it is third-party carelessness that can dramatically increase your chances of injury. All employers and individuals are responsible to uphold a certain duty of care not to put others at risk of injury or accident. According to the website of the Law Office of Bill Pelhan, duty of care can be breached in many ways including failure to safely maintain property or equipment, or selling a dangerous or defective product. If you were involved in a workplace accident because a third party has breached their duty of care, you can take legal action in order to receive compensation.

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Reckless Driving

Traffic laws are put in place to protect people on or near the road. Reckless driving, however minor it may seem, disregards these laws and puts drivers, pedestrians, and cyclists in danger. The most common reckless driving activities are speeding, tailgating, drunk, drowsy, or distracted driving, running red lights or stop signs, and failure to use a turn signal. Unfortunately, reckless driving is one of the top causes of accidents on the road, and these accidents are preventable.

Cell phone usage has caused distracted driving to become one of the leading causes of traffic accidents. Distracted driving has grown to include activities like texting, eating, using a navigation system, and adjusting the radio or music device. Texting is the most dangerous distraction because it requires manual, visual, and cognitive attention from the driver. The largest number of distracted driving accidents occurred among drivers younger than 20. Of these accidents, 21% were because of cell phone usage.

Drunk driving is widely considered the leading cause of traffic fatalities in the U.S., accounting for 31% of traffic related deaths in 2010. However, speeding is often overlooked as another leading cause of traffic fatalities, despite the fact that it is one of the most common reckless driving activities. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, there are about 10,500 speeding-related traffic fatalities each year. An article from the Law Offices of Vic Feazell website explains that the most common ways that speeding threatens others include:

  • Reduced control of your vehicle
  • Decreased ability to react to oncoming collisions or road conditions
  • Compromising the function of vehicular safety features
  • Increased probability of damage in the event of an accident

Speeding accidents are entirely preventable, and drivers who choose to ignore speed limits put themselves and others in unnecessary danger.

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The Difference Between Secured and Unsecured Debts

Bankruptcy is often considered a helpful solution for those who are buried in debt and need to save their finances. However, the court may treat you differently depending on the type of debt you owe your creditors. For example, a person with a large amount of secured debt could lose property in the event of bankruptcy. If you are facing the decision to file for bankruptcy, it is important to learn the difference between secured and unsecured debts.

Secured debts are considered collateral for the debt you owe a creditor, and the creditor has the right to seize the asset if you fall behind on payments. For example, a mortgage loan is secured by your home itself. An unsecured debt does not provide creditors with any collateral for your debt. Credit card debt is the most common unsecured debt. If you fall behind on payments, the creditor does not have the right to seize your assets, but they do have the right to take alternate action to encourage payment. These actions can include hiring a debt collector, suing to garnish your wages, or suing to put a lien on your assets.

According to an article from the law office of Ryan J. Ruehle, unsecured debt seems like a less immediate threat to financial stability, but it can still present a serious danger. This is because some unsecured debts, such as student loans, cannot be discharged during bankruptcy.

Bankruptcy may seem like the only option if you are facing more debt than you can handle, but it is important to consult a bankruptcy lawyer to help determine your legal options and decide which option is best for your situation.

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Dangerous Drug Interactions

Medications, whether they’re over-the-counter or prescription, can be lethal if combined incorrectly. Unfortunately, millions of Americans are at risk of death because they are unaware of the dangerous drug interactions they may be exposing themselves to. This is why it’s important not only for pharmacists to explain these dangers, but for patients to understand and avoid them.

The most common example of a deadly prescription interaction involves SSRI antidepressants and pain killers. Mixing SSRIs and prescription pain medicine can cause a reaction called serotonin syndrome. Its symptoms include euphoria, restlessness, delirium, shivering, and diarrhea. If serotonin syndrome goes undetected and untreated for too long, it is lethal. Considering around 27 million Americans take SSRIs, the chances that a deadly interaction could happen are extremely high if patients are not educated about their prescription.

According to the Medical Malpractice Payout Analysis, $144 million out of the $3.6 billion dollars in malpractice payouts in 2012 were medication related. Pharmacies and pharmacists are held to a certain duty of care to ensure that patients receive the correct prescription and information about how to use their medication. Despite this duty of care, an estimated 51 million prescription errors are made each year. The most common types of pharmaceutical error, as cited on the website of Scudder and Hendrick, involve:

  • Dispensing the incorrect medication strength or dosage
  • Dispensing the wrong drug
  • Confusing prescriptions between customers
  • Failing to give proper utilization instructions
  • Failing to warn against dangerous drug interactions

It is important to educate yourself about your prescription medication in order to avoid becoming a victim of malpractice. Always talk to your pharmacist about the side effects of a new medication, as well as what to avoid while taking that medication in order to ensure that you are not putting yourself at risk.

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