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Involved In a Car Accident? Follow These 3 Important Steps

Published on Feb 6, 2017 at 7:11 pm in Blog.

car accidentBeing involved in a car accident can be one of the most terrifying experiences of a person’s life. Even if the crash is minor, there could always be serious problems resulting from the crash. It’s important that every driver on the road knows exactly what to do in the event of a car accident.

First: Make Sure Everyone (Including You) Is Safe
After any accident, you should immediately call an ambulance and have professional health workers inspect you and everyone else involved in the crash. Because motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of traumatic brain injury (TBI) deaths (especially for 20 to 24-year-olds where TBI-related death rates are the highest), the medical issues you or anyone else involved could be even more severe that you originally thought. Getting the necessary medical attention will ensure that you’re okay, and then you will be able to move onto the next step.

Second: Make Note and Take Pictures of Everything
The second thing you should do in the event of any car accident, is to document every second of the aftermath. Provided that you’re not in too much harm, you should take out a pad and pen or your phone and start writing down everything that’s happening. Make a note of when the crash happened, how fast you were going, your statement of what happened, what witnesses are around, when the ambulance arrived, and anything else that might help you in court should you eventually go to trial. You should also take pictures of everything so you have photographic evidence to show later on. Most importantly, take pictures of your vehicle and the other vehicles involved in the crash.

Third: Call Your Law Firm
The next thing you should do in the event of any accident is to contact your personal injury lawyer. You should provide your lawyer with every single detail of the situation you have (keeping notes will help with this process) and show them all the photos you have as well. Telling them exactly what happened is essential because they will need any and all necessary information in order to properly handle your case.

Although vehicle accidents can be terrifying, if you remain calm, make sure everyone is okay, document everything, and call your lawyer, you won’t have as much to worry about.

Things to Remember Before Hiring a Personal Injury Lawyer

Published on Feb 3, 2017 at 7:08 pm in Blog.

personal injury lawyerSelecting a personal injury lawyer can be easy, but if you want to ensure that you’re working with a high-quality law firm, you should do a little research before you make your final decision. Obviously, every situation is different, and you might need to speak with a personal injury lawyer immediately after something like a car accident, but at least knowing these important aspects can help.

It’s Best to Work With Lawyers Who Exclusively Work On Personal Injury Cases
Because personal injury is a wide sector of the law, personal injury cases are often complicated and involve specialized rules and practices that only an experienced personal injury lawyer can handle. Sure, attorneys can be good and have experience with other kinds of law, but you’re going to want to work with someone who knows the ins and outs of personal injury law.

Provide Necessary Information During Your Consultation
One thing you should remember before hiring a personal injury lawyer is that initial consultations are usually free of charge. During these consultations, however, you have to be upfront and transparent with all details surrounding your case because in order for the lawyer to do their job properly. If you aren’t providing your lawyer with all the details of your case, are embellishing or lying in any way, that’s only going to worsen your chance at having a successful outcome.

If you need legal assistance and want to speak to an experienced law firm that focuses on personal injury, contact Golden Law Office today.

Teacher’s Rights and the Law: Know When to Find an Education Attorney

Published on Dec 27, 2016 at 5:44 pm in Blog.

Where would our nation’s children and schools be without their teachers? Few careers are more important for encouraging a bright and better future than teaching, and yet few workers are taken for granted as much as our educators.

That’s part of the reason why teachers have so many legal rights to protect their jobs, ideas, and practices from undue interference. Here are some of the areas where having an education attorney might be useful when it comes to protecting and serving teachers’ rights.

Academic Freedom: In many ways, public school teachers often have to work with the material and curriculum they’re given. But within that, they also reserve the right to teach materials or promote discussions without any undue restrictions.

Freedom of Speech: Academic freedom also aligns closely with First Amendment rights to freedom of speech for all Americans. Though public school teachers are not supposed to promote any political, religious, or personal agenda in their lessons, they can freely speak up about important issues of the day — so long as it doesn’t interfere with curriculum or job duties. Generally, university professors have much more academic freedom — in theory.

Tenure and Dismissal: Unlike many jobs where employees can be fired at will, most states give tenure security to public school teachers. This means that the school must show just cause in the event of a termination or dismissal. If not, a teacher may file for a wrongful termination case on any of some 20-plus different legal bases. Between 50% to 70% of wrongful dismissal cases are won by the former employee.

Right to Organize: Teachers unions are some of the strongest and largest in the country, and with good reason. Teachers reserve the right to freely associate with labor unions and professional organizations in order to better negotiate with school boards and advocate for their terms of contract.

Unfortunately, teachers may routinely experience situations where their rights are being undermined, challenged, or outright violated. If you have a case of discrimination in the workplace, wrongful termination, union-breaking, or have had your freedoms of speech infringed upon, it may be time to talk with an education attorney about your legal rights and options.

Call our experienced team of Lexington attorneys at Golden Law Office to help you get started on the path to justice.

When and Why Parents Might Need a School Law Attorney

Published on Dec 23, 2016 at 5:43 pm in Blog.

We trust our school systems to provide our children with quality education, fair opportunities, and safe spaces for learning. But what happens when the system falls short?

School law attorneys can help you and your family when your child suffers mistreatment or injustice while at school. Although civil lawsuits are said to cost the U.S. economy $239 billion every year, in many cases those costs ensure that the rights of citizens everywhere remain well protected. Here are some of the most important times to consult a legal professional when it comes to your child’s education.

Discrimination

All children in the United States have the right to an education, no matter their race, gender, religion, or country of origin. If you are experiencing issues of discrimination from a school, you should contact a school law attorney to help you take the necessary actions to make the situation right.

Abuse

Physical, mental, or emotional abuse against a child is unthinkable for many, but it does unfortunately happen, sometimes even from teachers. Any use of corporal punishment, restrictions on freedom of speech, or cruel and unusual punishments should be dealt with immediately. Call the police if you suspect immediate danger, but consider hiring an education lawyer to help hold those responsible accountable.

Special Education and Disability

The Disabilities Education Act is a federal law that requires schools in all states to provide necessary accommodations for students with physical disabilities, learning disabilities, or other special needs care. Failure to address those needs could face serious consequences.

Standards of Education

While many people have their own opinions about the school standards and regulations from state to state, there are good reasons to have them in place. They help ensure that our schools adequately deliver the education our children need to learn, grow, and become citizens of the world. Denying a child the right to quality education is simply unacceptable.

Nearly everyone understands that there are few things more important in the life of a child than a proper education. If you feel that your family’s rights have been compromised, you may want to seek legal counsel with a professional school law attorney to learn what you can do. Not only will you be protecting your own children, but the children of the future as well.

Understanding Mild Traumatic Brain Injury: Symptoms and Diagnosis

Published on Dec 16, 2016 at 5:42 pm in Blog.

Rest assured, there’s nothing “mild” about a mild traumatic brain injury (MTBI), except by comparison. Around 1.7 million people every year will sustain some sort of traumatic brain injury, which will result in more than 1.36 million emergency room visits, 275,000 hospitalizations, and 52,000 deaths.

Anyone who suffers a head injury should seek help from a medical professional and, when necessary, a brain injury lawyer. But at the same time, knowing the signs and symptoms of MTBI can help you recognize the issue more quickly and ensure you get the treatment and recovery you need.

Brain injuries are unlike other physical injuries in that you can’t always see them, even if they’re there. MTBI may cause changes in memory or thinking habits that may alter a person’s life, despite looking the same on the outside. They usually occur as a result of trauma to the head: slips, fall accidents, or vehicle collisions that jostle the brain out of its normal functioning.

The initial onset of MBTI may resemble a concussion, with possible disorientation, temporary amnesia, or loss of consciousness. But the symptoms that remain after the initial injuries have been treated are what you need to look out for most of all.

Early-onset symptoms of MTBI include chronic dizziness or vertigo, headaches, nausea, and vomiting. Later symptoms may manifest as an intolerance toward loud noises or bright lights, tinnitus, chronic fatigue, and irritability or depression. Remember that even though these symptoms may not appear for weeks or months after the initial accident, they may still be directly related to the brain trauma suffered as a result of it. And because many other injuries and illnesses can cause similar symptoms, it’s important to seek medical treatment for an official diagnosis.

If you suspect that you or a loved one is experiencing MTBI after an injury or accident, seek professional help from a medical specialist and a brain injury lawyer. The recovery process can be long and difficult. Many patients require extended time off from work, therapy treatments, and at-home care, which means that getting the compensation you deserve from your accident is vital to help cover your costs and ease your transition.

Luckily, in most cases a mild traumatic brain injury isn’t a life sentence. Many people are able to make full recoveries, given the right tools, resources, and time.

7 Surprising Statistics About Large Truck Accidents

Published on Nov 20, 2016 at 5:40 pm in Blog.

Road safety is important. But no matter how careful you are as a driver, some factors on the highways are simply out of your control. Sharing the road with large semi-trucks and tractor-trailers can be dangerous for passenger vehicles, where you are left vulnerable because of your relative small size. While trucking transportation is an important part of our economy, these vehicles can cause serious accidents, especially when truck drivers are undertrained or overworked. Here are seven surprising statistics about large truck accidents to remind you to always stay alert on the road.

  1. Large trucks take much longer to brake than typical passenger vehicles. In fact, a fully loaded tractor-trailer truck will take 20% to 40% longer to come to a complete stop than a small car. These differences can become even more pronounced on slippery, wet roads or with poorly maintained brakes.
  2. Large truck accidents are more likely to result in fatal multiple-vehicle incidents than passenger vehicles. In 2012, 81% of fatal crashes involving trucks were multiple-vehicle, as opposed to just 58% of crashes caused by passenger vehicles.
  3. Approximately 500,000 large truck accidents happen every year. Of these, 5,000 will result in a fatality.
  4. One out of every eight car accident fatalities involves a truck.
  5. Driver fatigue is said to be responsible for 30% of all commercial truck accidents. Most commercial trucking companies allow drivers to operate up to 11 hours a day, 77 hours per week — but many drivers are under pressure to meet deadlines and work beyond those hours.
  6. Driver-related factors, such as speeding, distraction, and impairment, were cited as root causes in 34% of all fatal large truck accidents.
  7. The average cost of damages in an accident involving a commercial truck is $59,150.

Trucking accidents can cause serious injuries, damages, and even death. If you or a loved one has been involved in a trucking accident, you may wish to consult a personal injury lawyer with knowledge and experience in this field. Since the rules and regulations can vary from state to state, find an attorney in Lexington KY to help you recoup the compensation you need for damages, medical bills, and more.

Be Careful Out There: 5 Dangerous Driving Habits to Avoid

Published on Nov 11, 2016 at 5:07 pm in Blog.

lawyers in lexington kyWe may think we’re practicing safe habits while on the road, but even the most diligent of drivers makes a vital error every so often. However, you must not discount the importance of consistent road safety. Doing so could result in an accident or neck, extremity, or head injury. At worst, one of these mistakes could prove fatal. Although some accidents cannot be avoided, you can reduce your risk by not taking part in one of these five dangerous driving habits:

Driving under the influence
Unfortunately, driving under the influence of drugs and alcohol is all too common. In 2013 alone, 9.9 million people reported getting behind the wheel while under the influence of illicit drugs. Furthermore, the majority of traffic-related fatal accidents are due to drunk driving. You may think you can handle driving while under the influence of drugs and alcohol, but you most likely have a very unrealistic picture of your skills during this time. Avoiding a DUI/DWI or a terrible accident is easily avoidable. Use a designated driver or call a friend, family member, or taxi company. If you don’t, you may need a car accident attorney and may face a court battle.

Drowsy driving
You may think that sleepy driving isn’t anywhere near as dangerous as driving with substances in your system. Actually, it can be just as dangerous. Your reaction time will be slower, you’re apt to make poor decisions, and you have a high risk of falling asleep behind the wheel. Most drowsy drivers end up getting in crashes on highways or high traffic areas and can’t do anything to prevent the crash before it happens. If you find that you’re nodding off at the wheel, pull over in a safe location to get some sleep. It may put your plans off-course, but you’ll be glad you avoided a potentially fatal accident. Better you get your sleep for a little while than forever.

Distracted driving
With an increased use of electronic devices comes an increased amount of driving distractions. When you’re texting, eating, using a GPS, or talking to your car’s passengers, your driving skills will be impaired. No cell phone conversation can be important enough to put your life and the lives of others at risk. Keep the phone out of sight when driving and don’t engage in tasks while driving that ideally require even one hand to complete. One stupid decision could lead to a terrible accident that requires a lot of help from a legal professional.

Speeding and reckless behavior
Failing to obey posted speed limits and other important rules of the road is simply bad news. Speeding is the second-leading cause of accidents. The faster your speed, the more likely you’ll get in a crash. It should be noted that driving below the posted speed limit can also result in accidents. In addition, swerving, frequent lane changes, lack of signaling, tailgating, or not following proper passing laws will often result in a crash. If you choose to disobey the rules of the road, other drivers will often pay the price — and so may you, in court. If you don’t want to have to seek out the top lawyers in Lexington KY, use common sense and respect the regulations and other drivers.

Not accounting for weather
When you fail to adjust your driving in adverse weather conditions, you can easily sustain or inflict personal harm. Driving too fast in rain or snow can result in skidding or worse. Watch out for ice, travel at a safe distance from other cars, and give yourself extra time in bad weather. Having snow tires or all-wheel drive does not give you an excuse.

Be sure to follow these tips to help you practice safe driving. If you find yourself in need of car accident lawyers in Lexington KY, please contact us today.

10 Important Times to Consult a Legal Professional: Part 1

Published on Oct 20, 2016 at 8:53 pm in Blog.

mportant times to consult a legal professionalThere are countless attorneys throughout the country practicing law, and countless more individuals who require their help. Most of the time, lawyers are the people we hope to avoid, since most people turn to them only after something bad has happened. However, it’s highly likely that you will find yourself choosing a lawyer at some point or another throughout your life.

In this two-part series, we’ll cover the top 10 most common and important times to consult a legal professional for help. Here are the first five:

1. Car Accident
Car accidents can happen at any moment, any time of day, on any road in America. They may be caused by any number of factors, but one thing is for sure: distracted driving because of cell phone use is on the rise. At any given daylight hour, there are approximately 600,000 drivers on the road using their phones or other electronic devices. Each one is an accident waiting to happen.

2. Fall Injury
All landowners in Kentucky are required to maintain reasonably safe premises, whether for business or residential purposes. Fall accidents from hazardous environments can result in serious injuries and expensive medical bills requiring legal compensation.

3. Wrongful Death
The loss of a loved one from a fatal accident may be devastating, but it’s also one of the most important times to consult a legal professional. Seek justice for a wrongful death by hiring an experienced lawyer for your case.

4. Medical Malpractice
When the doctor’s orders turn out to do more harm than good, you may suffer physically and financially. Finding a legal team with medical experts on board can help you in your malpractice case.

5. Nursing Home Abuse or Neglect
We put a tremendous amount of trust in caregivers for our parents and elders. A violation of that trust through abuse or neglect may lead to serious injuries or death; when you seek legal action against the responsible parties, you can prevent that heartache from happening to another family.

These are five of the most common, and perhaps most obvious, times when it’s important to hire a good lawyer. In our next post, we’ll reveal five more vitally important times to consult a legal professional that you might not have thought of right away.

10 Important Times to Consult a Legal Professional: Part 2

Published on Oct 18, 2016 at 4:29 pm in Blog.

legal professionalThe law of the land provides more than just the right to sue someone after a traumatic accident or injury. Lawyers are also important for handling more subtle liability claims and mishaps. Continuing from the previous post, here are five more important times to consult a legal professional that may not be the most obvious ones.

6. Wrongful Termination
If you’ve been fired from a job because of discrimination or employer retaliation, you may have a case of wrongful termination on your hands. Consult with a lawyer to learn about your rights as a worker and the finer details of HR policy.

7. Liquor Liability
Establishments that are licensed to serve alcohol, such as bars and nightclubs, can also be held responsible for over-serving a guest who then later causes injury or damage to herself or to others. These cases can be incredibly complex and difficult to prove, so have a quality attorney on your side.

8. Defective Products
Poorly manufactured goods are not only dangerous, they can be quite expensive for the responsible party. Every year, civil lawsuits cost the U.S. economy a combined $239 billion. Cases of this kind often require testimony from multiple witnesses, legal professionals, and experts in the field, and might drag on for months at a time.

9. Insurance Bad Faith
If an insurance company denies your claim or provides less than what your coverage guarantees, you may argue that they have negotiated in “bad faith.” This may qualify not only as a case of civil wrongdoing, but a breach of contract as well.

10. Dog Bites
In Kentucky law, any dog owner whose animal causes damage to a person, livestock, or property can be held responsible for that damage, even if it is a first-time offense for the dog. As a dog bite victim, you are entitled to compensation for all of your medical bills, injuries, or other damages you may have sustained.

If there’s one thing we can reliably expect in life, it’s for the unexpected to happen at any time. When accidents, injuries, or other misfortunes fall into your lap, find a legal professional to help you right wrongs, seek justice, and get you back on your feet for whatever life may have in store for you next.

Choosing a Lawyer for Your Wrongful Termination Case

Published on Oct 14, 2016 at 2:55 pm in Blog.

choosing a lawyerGetting fired from a job is never easy, but it might be even worse if you feel that you were wrongfully dismissed. State and federal laws hold protections for employees maintaining that a person cannot be fired from their job for certain reasons, including discrimination, retaliation, or refusal to commit an illegal act. However, the strength of those odds largely stems from the fact that most wrongful termination attorneys will only take on cases that they think they can win.

Therefore, choosing a lawyer to represent your case is one of the most important decisions you’ll have to make. Here is some advice on how to choose an employment lawyer for your best chances of success.

Find someone who specializes in your situation
There are many different kinds of employment lawyers out there, and even those who specialize in wrongful termination cases. However, try choosing a lawyer with as much experience in the specifics of your case as possible: another discrimination case, for example, or another whistleblower case with past records of success. Ask for references when possible.

Discuss a payment arrangement upfront
Many lawyers offer free consultation sessions, during which time you should ask about fees and rates. If you’ve been wrongfully terminated, chances are money could be tight due to your lack of employment. Accordingly, many attorneys also work on a contingency basis, meaning they don’t get paid unless your case is settled.

Familiarize yourself with your own case 
The more details you can put together about the circumstances of your firing and the more you try to familiarize yourself with your rights as an employee, the better equipped you’ll be to build a case. Choosing a lawyer based on what you already know can be much easier than trying to start from scratch.

In the end, if you’re not sure whether you have a case, don’t hesitate to contact an employment lawyer to discuss the basics of your situation. While handling a job dismissal might be stressful, you don’t have to do it alone.

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