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At the Law Offices of John Day, we deal with insurance policies and insurance companies every single day. Unfortunately, all too often we see clients who declined uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage or bought too low a limits for their circumstances simply because the right questions were not asked of their agent.  So start the New Year off right by taking a few minutes to talk to your agent about your coverage so that you get the best premium possible and so you are adequately protected in the event of an accident.  Below are some of the questions you should ask:

  1. What optional coverage is available? At the Law Offices of John Day, we believe the most important optional coverage is uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage. (If you are unfamiliar with this type of coverage and how it works, go to the side bar on the right and just type in uninsured motorist in the Search function. You will be taken to a number of articles on the subject). From our experience with our clients, most people decline this coverage because they think it will be too expensive. Talk to your agent. We think you will find it is inexpensive especially when you consider 1 in 5 drivers in Tennessee are uninsured. This coverage could mean all the difference if you are involved in an accident with one of those drivers.
  2. How will an accident affect my policy? Now some insurance companies are offering “accident forgiveness” and other similar benefits for their insureds. Discuss how an accident may affect your premium and/or even cancellation of the policy. This is especially important if you have teen drivers who tend to have more fender benders.

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For most folks, the holidays are a happy time filled with laughter, family, friends and fun.  But for those who are injured or who have lost a loved one, the holidays can be an especially painful time.  Their present situation contrasted with the version of how things used to be can make the holidays nearly unbearable.  If you know of someone who is injured or who is grieving the loss of a loved one, here are some suggestions on how to help.

  1. Acknowledge their loss whether it is in the form of an injury or a death.  Simply having the supportive presence of friends and family can make a huge difference.
  2. Take them a meal.  This is a gesture that promotes physical and emotional well-being. It does not have to be anything fancy.  In fact, comfort food is king in these situations and will let that person and their family know they are thought of and loved.

The Tennessean reports that the it is not the City of Chattanooga, the school district, or Hamilton County that owns the bus involved in the Chattanooga crash but rather a private company out of Illinois.

It that is correct, the cap on damages applicable to governmental entities discussed in my previous post  will not apply and general Tennessee damages law will be applicable.

There are artificial limits on damages that may be awarded by a judge or jury in personal injury and wrongful death cases but they are not by any means as limiting as those against governmental entities.

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This really is the big question, isn’t it? On Avvo, you see it asked a lot by folks who are trying to handle their case without a lawyer. And at the Law Offices of John Day, we get asked this question, or some variation of it, almost every single day by clients who call in for a free initial consultation.  And, believe it or not, other lawyers often ask us this question when they are trying to handle an injury or death case even though that is not their normal area of the law. So what is the answer? Continue reading

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Remember the old song? Escape by Rupert Holmes. The guy is lounging in bed with his significant other and reading the personal columns. He notices one that catches his eye and, because he is in a rut in his relationship, he responds. A meeting is set up, and when he shows up at the appointed time, it turns out that it was his girlfriend who he intended to cheat on had actually placed the ad. She appears at the rendezvous not knowing it was her lover who had responded and is equally, but happily, surprised: “they laugh for a moment and I said I never knew that you like Pina coladas and getting caught in the rain . . .” A happy ending; all is well.

Today, most folks looking to cheat in their relationship apparently don’t use the personal columns but instead 32 million of them turned to Ashley Madison. And after the hack of the company’s website, spouses around the globe are checking to see if their spouse was a user of the site. Doubtful there will be any happy endings. In fact, divorce lawyers are seeing an uptick in business. Continue reading

School bus photo

School is officially underway. In Williamson County, today was the first full day for kindergarteners. In surrounding area schools, it is the first day of school for students. Time to be on the lookout for the littles as they wait at the bus stop, enter and exit the bus and walk to and from school. Here are a few things you can do to help keep children safe this school year. Continue reading

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Last week, my wife and daughter were driving home from school when they noticed a goat in the road.  Fearful the goat was going to get run over or cause an accident on the narrow little road, my wife decided to try and find its owner.  Two farms were nearby so my wife pulled into first farm and went to the front door to alert the owner about the escaped goat. The homeowner advised my wife the goat in question belonged to the farm on the other side of the street.  The woman also reported she herself had put the goat up on several occasions.   Armed with this information, my wife drove to the farm across the street to alert them their goat was loose.

When my wife and daughter exited the car, the goat was still at the road.  They knocked on the door and waited a few moments but no one was home.  As they turned to walk back to the truck, they noticed the goat was approaching.  Before they could get back to their vehicle, the goat became aggressive, and this goat had horns.  Continue reading