At this time of year, especially with a shortened season between Thanksgiving and Christmas, it is easy to feel overwhelmed. Shopping, wrapping, addressing, baking and all the other things that need to be squeezed into our already busy schedules can become stressful. But it is important to take a step back, take a deep breath and realize that this type of overwhelmed is rooted in something joyful. We buy the presents, send the cards, bake the cookies, etc. because it is part of a season of joy and festivities. But, there is another type of overwhelmed. Continue reading
The New York Times published an article this week detailing how many hospitals, one of which is in Tennessee (LeBonheur Children’s Hospital in Memphis), have started suing their patients by the thousands for unpaid medical bills. Many of the patients had insurance and the hospitals were suing for deductibles and co-pays. According to the article, more than half of the reports to credit bureaus were a result of unpaid medical bills. Of course, in addition to the cost of litigation and the underlying medical bill, this affects people’s credit rating and overall financial health. Consider this from a study by the Commonwealth Fund:
43 percent had used up all their savings to pay their (medical) bills, 43 percent had received a lower credit rating as a result of their debt, 32 percent racked up debt on their credit cards, 18 percent said they had delayed education or career plans. People with lower incomes were particularly affected: 37 percent said they were unable to pay for basic necessities like food, heat or rent as a result of their (medical) bills.
Clearly, medical bills can be devastating to many families – even those with medical insurance. So how does this relate to a car accident or other injury-producing accident? Continue reading
In a recent blog post, Seth Godin wrote: “Accountability is done to you by the industrial system, by those that want to create blame. Responsibility is done by you. It’s voluntary. You can take as much of it as you want.” Seth Godin is a marketing guru and I enjoy his blog. As it relates to the legal field and the work of the lawyers at the Law Offices of John Day, I would change this post slightly: Accountability is done to you; when you do not take responsibility. Here is why I say that. Continue reading
Do you make New Year’s Resolutions? A lot of us do. The most common New Year’s resolutions are: (1) exercise more; (2) eat healthier; (3) save money. We all have such good intentions and then life gets in the way. In fact, by February, 80% of New Year’s resolutions are out the window. So if you have already messed up on your New Year’s resolutions, you are definitely not alone, and The Law Offices of John Day has some good news. We have some quick and easy resolutions that can protect you and your family and help you feel better about yourself for having a cheeseburger, fries and milkshake for lunch. We are calling them New Day’s resolutions because all four can easily be accomplished in one day. Continue reading
At The Law Offices of John Day, P.C., we have two intake specialists, Penny Whitaker and Lauren Bates. When people call into the offices for a free consultation, Lauren and Penny take the basic accident information for a free review by one of our award-winning attorneys. Let me say, Penny and Lauren do a great job; they understand that when people call our office they are often confused about their rights and options, scared about what the future may bring and looking for help. And, we desperately want to help. But all too often, we can’t and that is where the disappointment comes in. This is never truer than when someone did do something wrong and injuries or death resulted. Let me explain. Continue reading
Dog ownership can be terribly expensive. Our King Charles Cavalier, Lincoln, or President Lincoln if you are not on familiar terms, has a super-sensitive digestive system, so in addition to being regulars at our vet’s office, he eats prescription dog food and often needs a pill to calm his stomach. A friend of a friend just paid $4,000 to have her dog’s knee repaired after he tore his ACL.
Unfortunately, dogs are costing their owners and insurers even larger sums thanks to a nationwide increase in dog bite claims. Last year alone, dog bite claims accounted for a whopping one-third of all homeowners’ liability claims and totaled nearly $700 million dollars. In addition, the severity of dog bite injuries is increasing as too are the amount of the payouts (either via settlement or court judgments). So what should responsible dog owners do to protect their self and, just as importantly, others? Continue reading
Roughly 44% of all U.S. households have a dog. Ours has a tri-color King Charles Cavalier named Lincoln (pictured above). Lincoln and most other dogs are wonderful companions, protectors, and exercise buddies, but when they want to dogs can inflict a lot of damage primarily due to their bite pressure. So just how strong is a dog’s bite? Continue reading
As the New Year approaches, many start to think about improvements they want to make in their lives for 2017. At The Law Offices of John Day, P.C., our work involves helping people who have been injured in accidents and, since most accidents are preventable, we thought we would give you some New Year’s resolutions that can help protect you and others. The best part of these resolutions is, for the most part, they are easy and painless to implement (unlike that weight resolution most of us make). Here are our recommendations:
- Check your auto insurance and make sure you have uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage. I can’t tell you how often someone calls our office with significant injuries from a car accident who cannot recover any money because the driver who caused the accident did not have insurance and the client did not have uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage. We have written a number of posts about uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage and you can find them here, here, here and here. But, our number one piece of advice to protect yourself would be to purchase uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage with as high of limits as you can afford. You will truly be surprised at how cheap it is and it can mean the difference between receiving compensation for your medical bills, lost wages and injuries and receiving nothing.
- Wear your seatbelt. They save lives. Period.
Government regulations get a bad rap. To be sure, if you look long enough, you can find some that will make you shake your head and wonder, but for the most part regulations do a good job of providing protection to the public. And, they can also be a big boost in accident claims and injury lawsuits.
As proof that regulations are needed to protect the public, one need only look at the tragic hot air balloon crash in Texas that killed the pilot and 15 passengers earlier this year. Many believe this accident occurred because the Federal Aviation Administration does very little to exercise oversight of hot air balloon operators. In fact, regulations on hot air balloon operators are almost non-existent despite the fact that they often carry more passengers than small commuter planes and helicopters. Unlike conventional pilots, hot air balloon operators do not have to get regular medical exams and, while the form operators must complete asks about narcotic drug charges, it specifically excludes alcohol- related driving offenses. In the deadly Texas crash, the operator was taking at least 10 different drugs for various medical problems. Some of the drugs including oxycodone would have disqualified him from flying conventional aircraft because of their effect on decision-making and reaction times. Moreover, the operator had been convicted of drunk-driving on at least four occasions. Of course, regulations do not prevent every accident, but it is probably safe to say that if the Federal Aviation Administration had implemented tighter regulations over hot air balloon pilots that this particular pilot would not have been in the sky with passengers on that fateful day.
Regulations not only provide protection to the public but they also can help your accident claim or injury lawsuit. If you are injured in an accident and you want to recover money for your injuries, you must prove that someone else was negligent, that negligence caused your injuries and the extent of your injuries and damages. Let’s focus on negligence. In simplest terms, you should think of negligence as either doing something you should not have done or not doing something you should have done. Lawyers will often refer to it as a violation of the standard of care. Part of proving the other party was negligent involves proving the standard of care, but when there is a safety regulation the standard of care has already been established by the regulation itself. So then, all you must do is prove the defendant violated the regulation. In other words, the regulation can eliminate one step of what is normally a two-step process. So regulations can play a critical role in injury litigation.
Memorial Day is a day to remember and be grateful for those brave men and women who have died while serving our country in the military. It is also the unofficial start of summer. Beach trips, parades, lake outings, pool parties and barbecues are on a lot of folks’ agenda. Here are ten safety tips to help keep your weekend fun and injury-free: Continue reading