Common Causes of Maritime Accidents

Working on ships, ferries, and other sea vessels can be a dangerous job. Accidents casn cause injuries, property damage, and even deaths. In 2008, the US Coast Guard responded to more than 27,000 offshore incidents that caused around 800 deaths and more than $121 million in property damage. In order to reduce the risk of maritime accidents, it is important to ensure that a shipping vessel is “seaworthy” through proper maintenance and equipment.

According to the website of Williams Kherker, most maritime accidents are caused by negligence on the part of management or ship owner. Seafarers are protected by the Merchant Marine Act of 1920 otherwise known as the Jones Act, which allows them to collect damages if they can prove negligence on the part of their employers. In addition, the Jones Act entitles families of deceased maritime employees to collect death benefits for the death of their loved ones who were killed in a maritime accident.

Most maritime accidents were caused by human error which could have been prevented. Some of the errors that they make were due to being overworked, lack of sleep, or lack of proper training. A slight mistake by the crew can lead to serious injuries for the other workers. Human errors account for roughly 7 out of 10 maritime accidents. With a simple mistake, the boat could capsize, collide with another vessel, explode from a fire, or sink due to overboarding.

Maritime accidents can be preventable with proper care and maintenance. Likewise, keeping equipment up-to-date can also prevent accidents due to equipment failure. Aside from that, cargo must be properly loaded as it could result to head injuries, crush accidents, to name just a few. These are negligent acts which could make the person-in-charge liable under the Jones Act.

When reporting an injury or death, it should be accompanied by an accident report which contains the following:

  • the date and the location of the accident
  • The extent of damage
  • An expert evaluation of the most likely causes of the accident

Medical Wrong Diagnosis

The 225,000 yearly deaths due to medical negligence that are documented by the Journal of the American Medical Association can potentially but there are many more incidences of death-creating mistakes, in accordance with the same source, are never divulged to regulators, using the victims’ families, furthermore, never filing law suits against the liable party.

Medical malpractice is a reality that is blunt and it’s currently held as among the leading causes of death in the USA. It’s usually the consequence of acts of negligence and/or recklessness (and sometimes the selfish desire of getting larger earnings, consequently misjudging patients’ health disorders), leading to over-worked doctors and medical personnel, poor communication between physicians and nurses, and, the most ordinary origin of a chain of several other mistakes – erroneous analysis, that might mean skipped, delayed or over analysis.

According to the website of Williams Kherkher Law, a wrong identification may result in an individual being made to experience unnecessary lab tests, offered a wrong medical prescription, or subjected to a surgery or other kinds of therapy that aren’t desired. Meanwhile, the true illness may possibly aggravate (as it is not provided the correct therapy). The progression may be even caused by the unnecessary health care bills in the patient of a health condition that is severe that is new.

While physicians, unquestionably, would wish to give you individuals with the best treatment, they frequently fall into the error of limiting consultation period to a quarter hour in order to possess as many patients as you can. During this moment-constrained doctor-patient interaction span, several physicians still apply what many medical practitioners call as the “18-second rule.” This practice is distinguished by means of a doctor instantly distinguishing the patient’s complaints as a specific sort of sickness simply due to the symptoms’ likenesses with such sickness that was named.

There is a threat of acute injury or illness caused by wrong diagnosis (and other sorts of medical malpractice). To protect individuals and uphold their privileges whenever they fall casualty to medical suppliers’ negligent actions, medical malpractice regulations are passed to hold responsible the party/parties patient that were causing harm not unaccountable. Providing those who have fallen victim to it’s a pleasant step in the direction that is best, although how significantly these regulations have reduced the prevalence of medical negligence might be controversial.

Are Amusement Parks Really Dangerous?

There is something about the thrills of an amusement park that entices both excitement and fear.

From the taste of metal in your mouth while you can’t help but scream as the rollercoaster you’re on speeds on and loops and rises only all too slowly and only for all of it to drop faster than Greece’s GDP to the mixed calm and adrenaline from being so high up in a ferris wheel but how soothing the gentle mechanical movement of it all is. From the lights and music that inspires something sweet and nostalgic from the carousels to the unending amusement that bumper cars have to offer. In a place designed for fun, happy memories, and excitement – it is hard to think that anything bad can happen in a place like this.

Unfortunately, thanks to the negligence of some people, incidents like this are more than just possible. They have happened before, even.

Amusement parks are held to a certain standard of care due to the potential threat that their rides and attractions can cause if not properly maintained or manned. It is not, after all, your responsibility to ensure that the premises that you enter is safe for you. The park’s management and administration should be held accountable for any injuries caused by malfunctions or negligence while you are on the grounds of the park. The branch of the law that covers your case in this, according to definitions stated by the website of the people with Williams and Kherkher, is the one of personal injury.

Technically speaking, “personal injury” is defined as any injury (physical, emotional, and/or mental) that is caused to a person due to the negligence of another party. The intent is irrelevant as the party that caused the injury will still be held accountable no matter the variables of intention.

Wrongful Death in Kentucky

When someone dies because of another person’s action, it can be murder (with intent to kill) or wrongful death (accidental). It may seem like splitting hairs; it still means that someone is dead. However, there is a big difference in terms of the punishment. When there was intent to kill that person, it is a criminal act, and that person will go to jail. On the other hand, if there was no intent to kill and the death came about by accident or a s a result of an assault, it is not a crime. However, the person or entity responsible for the death will still be civilly liable if there was negligence involved. Louisville KY personal injury lawyers call this wrongful death.

All states have laws regarding wrongful death. In Kentucky, wrongful death is “the death of a person (that) results from an injury inflicted by the negligence or wrongful act of another.” (Kentucky Statutes § 411.130) The act may have been intentional, such as beating up a person with a bat, but it does not necessarily mean that the desired end was the death of the victim. A good example is road rage. It is easy for two people to act recklessly in the heat of the moment, and if one of them dies as a result, that would be wrongful death, not murder.

A clearer example would be product liability. If a drug company sells a product they know could have serious side effects on some patients, but intentionally withholds this information from the public, they become civilly liable for anyone who dies from taking the drug. While the drug company did not assault or even know the victim, the fact that they violated their duty of care towards their customers by withholding vital information means they are directly responsible for that death.

As the victim is dead, other people may file a wrongful death suit. Kentucky law only allows the personal representative of the deceased’s estate to file. The probate court names the personal representative. Any awards from the lawsuit will accrue to the estate and be distributed to the legal beneficiaries of the estate, if any, once all administrative expenses, including funeral and burial expenses, are deducted.

The spouse and children are the primary beneficiaries, but in the absence of both, the parents of the deceased will receive the award. If there are no surviving parents, the estate is distributed as dictated by the deceased’s will, or in the absence of a will, any other legal heirs. A wrongful death lawsuit can be filed even as a criminal case is ongoing; Kentucky law only allows one year from the victim’s death for a wrongful death lawsuit to be filed.

What to Put in Storage

Choosing the right storage unit is an important part of your move. With this comes choosing what to put in a storage unit and what to put in your new home. Although this varies with how much extra space you have in your new home, here are some common items one should keep in storage.

Childhood memorabilia is great to look at when you are feeling nostalgic, but it is not typically often people are inspired to relive their younger years. These items will most likely take up space that needs to be filled by objects of the present, so keeping them away from your living space without actually throwing them out is your best bet. The nostalgic feeling will only increase after having it away in storage for so long.

If you still want to keep all of your old furniture but are downsizing, do not stress about being able to fit all of it in your new living space. It’s tough to be happy when you feel crowded in. However, you never know when you may need the furniture again, whether it is to give to a friend, sell for extra cash, or need for future homes. Your best bet is to keep your excess furniture in storage.

Keeping accessory vehicles such as four-wheelers, boats, or extra cars at your home takes up space you can use for things you will need at momentary notice. They also hinder your ability to entertain your friends at home due to the mass amounts of space taken up in your garage or on your sidewalk or street. These vehicles are usually used for planned excursions anyway, so keeping them in a relatively close storage space will not be an inconvenience.

Storage space may cost you a little extra money, but the pros of it easily outweigh the cons, especially if you have too many things and not enough room.

Modification of Court-Ordered Child Support

Divorce courts in the US generally has the final say in issues regarding the terms of the divorce decree, and are usually embodied in binding court orders. However, there are circumstances when there is a need for modification of court orders such as when major changes impact on a person’s ability to comply with those orders. One of these is when a supporting parent is no longer able to provide the amount of court-ordered child support. Child support is one of the more sensitive issues in divorce, and failure to pay child support is carries severe sanctions in the US.

Each county in Arizona has its own child support modification process, mainly differentiated by the type of forms used and the order in which they are given. A petitioner in Maricopa County, for instance, is required to file a Petition to Modify Child Support with the Superior Court. The court then issues an Order to Appear for a conference before a judicial officer at the Family Court Conference Center. If there are no challenges to the petition, the officer will then issue and sign a document recording of the stipulation regarding the modification. At this point, the concerned parties can then leave. However, if there is a dispute, an evidentiary hearing will be held at which time the officer will issue a decision regarding the petition based on the facts brought before him or her.

A lawyer, such as one of the divorce attorneys of Marshall & Taylor PLLC, would be an important person during the evidentiary hearing because it is then that any legal barriers to the modification can be brought up or broken down, depending on the desires of the client. Without experienced legal representation, it will be very hard to identify, provide and present evidence to present before the judicial officer which will bring about the desired outcome.

If you are involved in a petition for modification of court-ordered child support, it is important that you know what the legal ramifications will be. Consult with a lawyer in your appropriate county about your case to ensure that your rights are protected throughout the entire process.

The Advantages of a Fuel Card

Truckers live on fuel, and it makes infinite sense for them to carry a fuel card for a plethora of reasons. This is why full-service freight factoring companies such as TBS Factoring offer it as part of their packages.

Fuel cards are just as good as cash. Many of the better known fuel card service providers such as Comdata and FLT are accepted in major gas stations and truck stops in all parts of the US for a small transaction fee. Moreover, a fuel card is not as negotiable as cash; if you lose a fuel card, you can instantly have it cancelled. If you lose cash, that’s the end of the story.

Fuel cards usually come with rebates and discounts. Using the card to make fuel and other purchases translates to considerable savings that increase with use that just doesn’t come when using cash or credit cards. The more popular fuel cards are accepted in thousands of establishments with attractive incentives.

Fuel cards come with fuel management tools. Internet-based fuel cards provide access to real-time money-saving information such as the best truck stop and gas stations with the lowest prices. It also allows fleet owners to manage fuel use, expenses, invoicing, reports, and many accounting applications.

Fuel cards make it convenient to get money fast. Most fuel cards allow users to make a check or cash advance for a minimal fee. This can come in handy in an emergency, such as purchasing a tire or having repairs made.

Fuel cards are a good way to get factoring payments. Factoring companies with a tie-up with fuel cards can provide the option of making payments for the loads they factor into the cards for their clients. This typically translates to smaller remittance fees.

Cash may be the king of the road, but is it infinitely better (and safer) to bring around a single card than wads of cash while on the road. Whether you are a fleet manager or a truck owner-operator, you will find many reasons to prefer fuel cards in your business.

Settling a Motorcycle Accident Case

Settling an injury lawsuit or an insurance claim can be tricky because there are various factors that can affect how much the case would amount to. It is important to understand what factors could affect or at least forecast the possible outcome of the case in money figures in order for you to be able to put a value on your motorcycle accident case.

First, check the availability and the amount of insurance the defendant has. A settlement may not be successful if the defendant has very few other assets, and you may have to accept a settlement that would be equal to the insurance coverage limits of the defendant, even though it may be lower than the actual amount of damages made. Next, see how both you and the defendant put “value” to the case – this typically means having an assumption on how much the jury would award you (the plaintiff), along with the amount of compensation the defendant can possibly pay. Putting value to the case is generally affected by the extent of damages suffered by the plaintiff and how the jury would see the liability of the defendant in the accident.

Regarding the likelihood of the defendant to be liable for the accident, it is your (as the plaintiff’s) responsibility to prove, with evidence, of the defendant’s negligence that eventually caused the accident. Proving the defendant’s fault plays the key role in ensuring that the settlement or compensation granted by the court will be equal to the damages that the accident caused. Lastly, according to Habush Habush & Rottier S.C. ®, concrete costs such as medical bills and damages can be easy to put value to, less concrete ones such as emotional trauma and pain and suffering can be hard to compute. Since every motorcycle case can differ, it is greatly suggested to consult and have a motorcycle accident lawyer to guide you through the whole process. An experienced and knowledgeable lawyer may have an idea on how much the plaintiff’s damages would be worth and how much settlement is acceptable and fair.

Patent Procurement in the US

The protection that a government provides to inventors and research and development companies for their creations is a major driving force in the economy. Without this protection, creators would be reluctant to publish because they have no guarantees that they will benefit exclusively from its use. Intellectual property law in the US does precisely that, albeit for a limited period only, after which the invention becomes public property.

In order to claim protection under these laws, the inventor must go through the patent procurement process. However, as explained on the website of Gagnon, Peacock & Vereeke, P.C., there are some things that have to be considered prior to patent procurement, including making a patentability and freedom-to-operate search as well as the eligibility of an invention to obtain a patent. Once these are satisfied, a patent may then be applied for.

In the US, there are two phases to patent procurement: preparation and prosecution. Preparation pertains to the drafting of the patent application itself, which is in two major parts:

  • Specification
    • Summary in non-legal language
    • Detailed description of the invention and its applications
  • Claims – defines the scope of the invention including devices, processes, and compositions

In the application process, the specification must match the claims, otherwise the application becomes invalid. An inventor may choose to file a provisional application as opposed to a full utility application to establish a priority date, but must file a full utility application within a year of the provisional application. It is usually advisable to have an intellectual property lawyer prepare the draft and file the application as well as negotiate with the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), also known as prosecution.

In general, patent procurement in the US takes about three years, although the time frame varies widely depending on each case. One factor may be the backlogs in the USPTO, which can significantly delay the process.

Internet Fraud

With the convenience and easy accessibility of the internet, many people have been accused of internet crimes such as using information and private details used in this world-wide web. Among them, identity theft is a common occurrence, since many private and personal details are shared online. Identity theft is a crime where a person’s private details are stolen and used without their consent. The victim can either be alive or dead, and being a victim can carry financial issues, among others.

In general, identity theft is a crime where another person’s identity is illegally stolen in order to acquire goods or services using deceit. It is very common in today’s times because of the use of internet in daily life, since it is easy to get anyone’s information or personal details. Taking another person’s personal details does not constitute identity fraud, rather, using it to for your own benefit is. Some of the places where these cyber criminals can get personal details are:

  • Bank account left open
  • Credit cards, state loans, and loans
  • Taking over existing accounts
  • Getting important documents (such as Social Security, passports, or driver’s license)
  • Hacking

It may be hard to take action once you have been a victim of identity theft. Reporting the crime is the first step, then make sure to organize and have a record about all the conversations you have regarding the reports. Leave a paper trail, and document everything. Make sure you report the problem as soon as you have become aware of it, and give yourself a deadline regarding any updates on your personal accounts.

Being vigilant about where and to whom you are giving your personal details, particularly during online transactions, and checking your bills are just some things that you can do to protect yourself. Make sure keep important details in a safe place, and if you are throwing away documents that have important personal information, make sure that you have shredded them. Be aware that anyone can get your information and use it for their own benefit, thus look after yourself.