Looking for Legal Assistance after an Accident

A great majority of personal injuries are the result of car crashes. Despite the security that auto insurance can provide, hiring an Oklahoma personal injury lawyer may still be necessary. The need to hire a lawyer to help with the legal proceedings stems from the fact that there is a lot at stake following a car crash that resulted in injuries. Having a lawyer would make it easier to present your case and negotiate a fair settlement.

It is the responsibility of the injured party to prove the extent of the injury. This can mean providing the lawyer with documents such as medical records and police reports. It is likewise important to present the medical bills, wage stubs (to prove the loss of wages due to the injury), photos of the scene, information on the other driver (name, address, insurance company, and phone numbers), and even photos of the injuries sustained. These will be presented in court and will be the basis on the amount of compensation that will be awarded. Despite appearing to be uninjured after an accident, it is still important to go to a doctor to ensure that there is no physical damage, since not all injuries exhibit themselves immediately. Whiplash is one such injury.

Many personal injury lawyers offer free consultation, and would only get paid after the case has been settled. Consulting with a lawyer would help you determine the extent of the compensation as well as help in the negotiation to arrive in a fair settlement agreement. If the injuries are serious and you are required to stay in the hospital, the lawyer will be the one who will gather the necessary evidence and present your case in court as your legal representation. It is important to not immediately sign or accept any settlement unless your lawyer have properly evaluated the extent of the injuries and damages.

Read More

In Need Of Legal Advice? Read On For Useful Tips Regarding Personal Injury Law

If you’re like most people, you are not that familiar with lawsuits. You may ask yourself what you need to do in order to go through with one, and not have the information you need to go forward. That’s why this article is here, to help you figure out what must be done. Keep reading for some great tips.

Before you commit to a personal injury lawyer, sit down for an initial consultation with them and have them break down what they will do for you. Many law firms will do this for free, much like the attorneys at the Disparti Law Group. The object when choosing a personal injury lawyer is for you to feel comfortable with them, especially since you are probably dealing with a sensitive matter.

At your first meeting with your personal injury lawyer, bring anything that you think is relevant to your case. For example, if the police were involved, bring a copy of their report. If you have spoken with your insurance company, bring any notes that detail what happened with them. All of this information will help your attorney start piecing together your case.

Many lawyers use flashy advertisements to mask their inability to win cases. Not only do they have poor reputations, how can you know who they truly are? Always have a face to face meeting before hiring a lawyer.

Never move your vehicle if you were involved in an accident, unless instructed to by a police officer. This may result in damages worsening and could make the other person less liable for the state of your vehicle. The exception should only be happening amid a busy street.

Going through a lawsuit is not always easy, but that’s why you need to be vigilant about the steps you can take along the way. Hopefully the tips in this article are going to help you do all you need so that you are successful with your case. Keep this article with you so you can refer to it often.

Read More

Health Effects of Hard Water

Water in the US is generally hard, meaning that it contains significant amounts of metal ions such as calcium and magnesium. States with the “hardest” water with more than 1,000 ppm (parts per million) include Texas, Kansas, and California. That’s all well and good, but what does it really mean when one has hard water in the home? Is it a health hazard?

The minerals that are in water are (usually) natural occurring, and sometimes an area may have particularly rich deposits of these minerals, which gets into the water and thus into homes. Extensive studies into the health effects of hard water per se shows no indications that it is harmful to the human body, and there is evidence that reasonably hard water may actually have health benefits.

Health effects notwithstanding, hard water has a peculiar taste and smell that most people find distasteful, and can alter the taste of food and drinks. In areas where the water has excessive amounts of calcium and magnesium, this is can be too much of a good thing.

Hard water can also be actively harmful in other ways, specifically in depositing residue on clothes and glass surfaces as well as clogging water pipes. As illustrated on the website of American Water, this can have serious financial consequences, especially when clogged water pipes lead to damage to appliances such as the water heater. Even if no appliances ate damaged, the pipes themselves gradually become useless and will eventually have to be replaced.

Homes in areas such as Austin in Texas know firsthand how bad it can get, and yet a surprising number of people have never considered the obvious solution to this problem: water softeners. It can treat the hard water before it gets into the pipes, thus preventing the cumulative effects in the first place. Contact a reputable water treatment company in your area to get a free water test and a quote for what your home needs to be hard water-free.

Read More

Tax Consequences for Mental Anguish in Personal Injury Litigation

Paying taxes often results in mental anguish, but when mental anguish is the reason for additional taxes, that is just too ironical for words.

The awards given in a personal injury lawsuit are in several categories. All personal injury cases sue for economic damages such as actual expenses for medical care, property damage, loss of income, or anything else that are measurable in financial terms. Some states limit personal injury awards to these damages, while others allow non-economic awards also known as punitive damages, typically imposed on the defendant as punishment for the wrongful act. These include pain and suffering, and mental anguish, although some impose a cap on the amounts. These are psychological components that usually accompany physical trauma, although even without physical trauma there can be mental anguish i.e. defamation.

When claiming for mental anguish, it is important to note that there is a tax consequence for mental anguish that is independent of or separate from physical injury. For example, if false statements affected an individual’s reputation that affected personal relationships on top of a decline in professional standing that had a financial consequence, the mental anguish from the loss of friendship or affection may be considered compensable. However, such compensation would be taxable under federal law.

However, if the mental anguish is tied in with a physical injury such as the loss of a limb, then it would not be taxable. Awards for physical injuries are generally tax-exempt, while mental injuries are not unless it is proven to be inextricable linked or inseparable to the physical harm sustained. When seeking to claim punitive damages for mental anguish or other mental injuries, it is important to insist to the lawyer that this be tied in with a physical injury if it is at all possible. An experienced personal injury lawyer would know how this can be done.

Read More

Defining Criminal Assault

Most people believe that assault is actual physical harm inflicted on someone, but in general just the threat of harm can be considered criminal assault. It is one of the few criminal offenses for which a person can be charged with little or no evidence. By definition, anyone can state that they had been threatened with bodily harm, and this could be grounds for an arrest of the accused. Criminal assault can be a misdemeanor or felony depending on the circumstances of the incident. For example, simple assault such as swinging a bat but not making actual contact is a misdemeanor while aggravated assault, where actual physical harm occurs usually with a deadly weapon, is a felony.

State law dictates what constitutes criminal assault within its jurisdiction, so what may be criminal assault in one state may not be in another state. It is important when being accused of criminal assault that you retain a lawyer who has an in-depth knowledge of state law as well as an active practice in the jurisdiction. Criminal defense lawyers and state prosecutors in the same jurisdiction tend to know each other as well as other officers of the court, which can make your defense go more smoothly than if you bring in an outsider, no matter how experienced or knowledgeable.

The usual companion of assault is battery, which is the attempted or actual intentional or negligent infliction of bodily harm. In general, it follows that a charge of battery also includes assault, but a charge of assault does not necessarily include battery. Battery may also be classified as a misdemeanor or felony.

Because little evidence is required for a charge of assault, a conviction or dismissal boils down to how good the defense lawyer is in handling the case. It may not even get to a trial if the defense can provide a good reason for the case to be dismissed i.e. an alibi that proves the defendant could not possibly have been present at the time of the alleged incident to do the assault.

Read More

Penalties for a DWI conviction

driving

Driving under the influence (DUI) is the term generally used for drunk driving charges, but in some states that is a term reserved for underage defendants i.e. below the age of 21. For adult defendants who are impaired while driving, the term used is driving while intoxicated (DWI). A DWI is considered a serious offense and carries escalating penalties that are currently the toughest in the state’s history. This can be quite a scary experience, especially for first timers.

Typically, a first-time drunk driving charge is a misdemeanor, which typically can be labeled a Class B misdemeanor. This can mean 180 days in prison, suspension of driving privileges for a year, and a possible fine of up to $2,000, plus an annual surcharge of $1,000 for the next three years. If the blood alcohol content (BAC) level is 0.16 or more, which is at least double the legal limit, the surcharge becomes $2,000.

Repeat offenders start racking up points where a second DWI charge within 10 years of the first offense is a Class A misdemeanor (up to 1 year in jail, 2 years licenses suspension, $4,000 in fines, $1,500 to $2,000 annual surcharge) and a third instances is a felony. A felony DWI is already in the big leagues right up there with sexual and felony theft offenses. It is not unusual for a conviction to mean 10 years in prison. For drivers who are charged with a DWI with a minor goes straight to felony territory, and those driving a commercial vehicle carriers with a BAC of .04 or over will get their drivers license suspended for a minimum of a year, depending on what they are carrying.

Perhaps more importantly, especially for first time offenders, is that a DWI conviction means a criminal record that they will carry with them like a ball and chain for the rest of their lives. This should be avoided as much as possible. Contact a DWI lawyer in the area immediately after being charged and say nothing until you have had a chance to consult with one another. This will prevent you from saying anything that may incriminate you or otherwise damage your case.

Read More

Hurricane Sandy Insurance Claims

The devastation of Hurricane Sandy is still fresh in many people’s minds, especially for those who have lost their homes. In order to move forward and start anew, many victims of Hurricane Sandy has filed for homeowner’s insurance claims hoping to receive some financial support, however many of these insurance claims have been denied. Being denied of a homeowner’s insurance can cause a big complication in your life, and the sad part of it is since insurance companies are also a business, they could have a varied reason for denying your claim. In order to ensure that your homeowner’s insurance claim will not be denied, here are some things that you should check:

  • There are insurance plans that does not cover for damages caused by damages, therefore make sure that your insurance plan has this policy. In cases of hurricanes, the insurance company can deny your claim by arguing floods, tidal threats, and waves as reasons.
  • Insurance companies can use the excuse of “unsafe conditions” as argument in denying your homeowner’s insurance claim. They can state that your home’s location is already in a high-risk area, therefore you either pay for a higher insurance premium or your house may not be covered by the insurance despite being damaged by the hurricane.
  • Unpaid premiums can also be used by insurance companies as reason to deny a claim. Make sure you are up to date with your insurance premium payments, otherwise they can use it as a threat to deny your insurance claims despite having paid properly in the past years.

The website of Williams Kherkher says that individuals should not easily accept a denied claim from their insurance companies without question. You could request for a reason for the denial, recheck your insurance policy if the reason is applicable, or get legal counsel. If you think the insurance claim is significant enough, it would be better to go to court in order to receive your insurance claim.

Read More

Child Support Modifications

With the ups and downs that are going on with the economy, many parents have suffered having to have legal issues regarding child support, or taking care of their child with the existing child support. Paying or receiving child support payments can become a burden to some, and there may be a time where modifications for child support are needed. Fortunately, parents are given options for modifications of child support.

The first thing to do in order to have child support modifications is to check if both you and the other parent agree on changing the child support agreement. Having a judge approve of the changes can make these changes more legal, and majority of the time the court would agree provided that the amount does not deviate from the one required by the State guidelines; otherwise a proper explanation should be provided on why and how the amount will be enough for child support.

Another option, according to the website of the Law Offices of Baden V. Mansfield in Manhattan Beach, is to go to court directly to ask for a child support modification, particularly if the other parent does not agree with the changes. The court can become the mediator that can listen to both your sides and decide on an appropriate settlement. A temporary or permanent child support modification can be granted by the court depending on the circumstances presented in court. Permanent child support modification will last until the support is no longer needed, or if the child support is again modified at a later date due to other changes in circumstances.

What parents should know is that if they are considering any changes on child support, they should address it immediately. Missing child support payments can lead to criminal charges, therefore circumstances such as job or income loss should be reported immediately. Filing for bankruptcy will not clear child support debts, therefore if you are having trouble paying for child support, then it would be better to ask the other parent of file for a motion in court.

Read More

Customizing Your Fishing Yacht

For many people, fishing is not just a mere sport; it is a passion that needs to be pursued. This is the reason why it would be better to have a custom fishing yacht, making it a more reliable offshore vehicle that is laden with creative features meant for fishing and ready to go wherever you wish to go.

In order to get the best of your custom fishing yacht, there are some things that need to be thought about. First, you should know what type of fishing type you wish to have. Fishing yachts should have a big deck space in order to store game or fishes caught. However, this feature should not be compromising the other features of a fishing yacht. Custom-made fishing yachts can have cabins meant for guests who wish to stay overnight during extended fishing trips and even add more features such as an entertainment room or bar.

Another thing to consider is the size of your fishing yacht – bigger yacht means more features that can be added. It also means a more complicated system for operating or handling, and could cost more. You should know your options, especially your budget, if you want to have a customized fishing yacht. Having a custom-made fishing yacht will not only give you the features you want on your boat (and suit your personal style), but it can also add more reselling value since it will be treated as a unique yacht. Insurance is also something that should be well thought of, especially since your fishing yacht can become a second home to you. There are other legal matters to take of, as well, such as registering your fishing yacht or documenting it as a United States Flag vessel.

Having a custom fishing yacht that provides that things that you wanted on a boat can make fishing an easier and enjoyable pursuit, and because a fishing yacht is one of the biggest investment you can have, it just makes sense to consider the many options that you have. Make sure you know what you really want and have the budget for it.

Read More

What to Expect from a Car Insurance Company after an Accident

It can be difficult to fully determine how a car accident insurance investigation works, since there are many options and factors that can affect the auto accident and insurance claims. These factors include the nature as well as the severity of the car accident, along with the car insurance company that’s involved. Because there are differences in auto claims (such as covering for medical bills or just for property damage), it would be best to understand how the investigation process of the car insurance companies generally proceed.

Immediately after the car accident, an insurance claim should be filed to your auto insurance company. This will inform the insurance company and immediately have someone who will contact you (usually by phone) to inquire more details regarding the accident. This person in usually the insurance adjuster, and will be the one who will investigate the claim in behalf of the insurance company. They will generally clear up or elucidate on the information that you have given and investigate further to better understand how the events occurred. The insurance claims adjuster will be the one who will analyze the policy you have and determine the claims that can be covered, and check if any possible expenses are over your coverage limit.

It is only after the insurance claims adjuster’s investigation will the settlement offer be given.  After evaluation of all the necessary details, you will be informed by the insurance claims adjuster whether you have a valid car insurance claim of not. There are cases where the insurance company will pay for the repair of the damaged vehicle (if it is only property damage). On some cases, a settlement offer will be given, which explains the breakdown of all the covered expenses that the insurance company is willing to pay. There are instances where the insurance company covers the full amount of expenses, otherwise a negotiation can be done between you and the auto insurance company.

It is very easy to get confused and overwhelmed with auto insurance claims following car accidents, which is why it is good to ask questions. Do not hesitate to ask about your rights for compensation or to file for personal injury claims from a lawyer. According to the website of the Chris Mayo Law Firm in San Antonio, this is particularly true when dealing with your own auto insurance company, since they are the ones who will be covering for the damages.

Read More