Wills vs. Living Trusts

Lyft Accident Lawyer San Antonio, TXWhen preparing for the disposition of their property after they pass on, many people often find themselves questioning what wills and living trusts are and which document would better suit their needs. Wills are legal documents that a person prepares prior to their death, which specify how the rest of the family should distribute their property and handle the other affairs. Living trusts are legal devices that allow a person of the creator’s choosing, the trustee, to handle the disposition of their property. While everyone’s situation comes with unique considerations, a probate lawyer knows that living trusts may provide various advantages over wills.

Living trusts can help your family avoid dealing with long, drawn-out probate proceedings.

Courts use probate proceedings to tie up a person’s loose ends, distribute their property, and generally enact their will. If you use a living trust, rather than moving through the court system, the trustee can distribute the property in accordance with the trust. This means that your family will not need to bring themselves to the courthouse and deal with the fees and hassle that come along with probate proceedings.

Living trusts also provide more privacy than wills do.

While both wills and living trusts remain private throughout your life, the probate court will look at the will after you pass on, even if there are no formal probate proceedings. That means that the will becomes a matter of public record. On the other hand, your relatives will not need to file the trust with the court, so it can stay between them.

Living trusts also stand a better chance of surviving a legal challenge after your death.

This makes it more likely that your final plans will be enacted to your specifications. The extra strength of a living trust comes from your ability to keep an active eye on it during your life. Because you would stay involved with the trust’s management during your life, relatives would find it harder to prove that you were not of sound mind when making the plan.

Living trusts make leaving property to minor children simpler.

Because minors cannot own most property, the trustee whom you choose can manage it for them, whereas a court appointee would likely handle the management if you chose to pass the property on with a will.

Living trusts have further benefits in the event that you become incapacitated while alive. Ordinarily, such circumstances would require relatives to petition the court for control of your affairs, and then the court would appoint a person to manage them. With a living trust, you can appoint a successor trustee to take over management in the event that you become incapacitated.

 Contact an Estate Planning Law Firm Today

Planning for what will happen to your property and assets is important for you and your loved ones. If you would like more information or help in forming a living trust, make sure you speak with a lawyer who is skilled and knowledgeable in estate law. Call an experienced attorney, like a probate lawyer from a law firm like W. B. Moore Law LLC.


When To Hire A Personal Injury Lawyer

Oklahoma City Personal Injury Lawyer

If you are thinking “do I need a personal injury lawyer?” or know someone who has been injured due to negligence, an accident, or by a form of misconduct, then it is time to seek legal counsel. Below are some frequently asked questions and answers about personal injuries from the personal injury lawyer.

When Should You File a Personal Injury Claim?
Unfortunately, there are strict deadlines for the amount of time an individual has to file a personal injury lawsuit. Every state has a law around the statute of limitations for various areas of practice which can range from 1 to 6 years, making it crucial for individuals to file their claims within the legal time frame. 

How Do I Know If My Case is Past the Statute of Limitations?
Depending on your type of personal injury case, the countdown typically begins the day the event occurred. The consequences of filing a lawsuit after the applicable deadline increases your chances of the court dismissing your case and losing any chance of getting compensated for your injury or loss.

A majority of personal injury lawyers do not charge for consultations, so there is little to no investment in seeing if you are within the statute of limitations for the type of case and state laws. Even if your deadline to file has passed, there are extenuating circumstances that can extend the amount of time you have.

How to File a Personal Injury Claim?
To prepare for your lawsuit, you will need to be able to explain the basis for your case to file a formal complaint, often called a “petition”. A lawyer will help draft the official complaint with the information in the caption on the plaintiff (the individual filing), the defendant (the individual(s) being filed against), and the court involved; along with the necessary signatures. 

How Much Does a Personal Injury Lawyer Cost?
Personal injury lawyers typically don’t charge you anything unless you win so that the client’s financial risk in hiring an attorney to represent them is minimized. If you win the settlement, the attorney will take a contingency fee which is a percentage of the recovered compensation. 

However there can be a few additional expenses to keep in mind outside of legal representation. Depending on the state you are filing in, they could require you to file a summons. A document notifying and explaining to the defendant why they are being sued as an official summons from the court, which can cost an average of $100 to $500. 

Associated costs are influenced by the court fees and area of practice for your case. Your legal counsel may be able to estimate the additional expenses that may occur. This price can vary based on the complexity, size, and type of case your personal injury lawsuit falls under.

If you or someone you love has been the victim of a personal injury, contact a good personal injury lawyer today.

Causes of Wrongful Death 

Wrongful Death

Wrongful death is a term for when a death was caused by a careless, negligent, or wrongful act by someone else. A lawsuit or case may be brought against the guilty party for wrongful death. Death is never a pleasant thing to think about especially when it was caused unexpectedly by someone’s failure to follow safety protocol, standard procedures, guidelines, or just a complete lapse of judgment or negligent act. If you would like to learn more about the different causes of a wrongful death or would like to know more information or details then keep reading.

Causes of Wrongful Death 

Wrongful death can be caused by a variety of different sources and circumstances. This type of unfortunate event can happen in many different working industries too or from many different activities. However, many of these scenarios are from automobile accidents but they also come from other sources like:

Medical malpractice – When a surgeon makes a critical error or botches a surgery that results in death this may be a wrongful death case from medical malpractice. Other things could occur under this term too that could lead to death like being prescribed the wrong type of medicine or dosage of medicine or even being misdiagnosed

Product defects – When a manufacturer incorrectly labels a product or manufactures it incorrectly it could lead to safety defects. These types of defects have been severe enough to cause death in some cases.

Motorcycle accidents – Motorcycle riders have very little protection against other vehicles on the road when they get in an accident. These accidents could be severe enough to cause a fatality and bring about a wrongful death case.

Pedestrian and bicycle accidents – These accidents generally involve being struck by a vehicle with injuries that could result in a fatality. 

Workplace accidents – Some industries are more dangerous to work in than others especially when heavy machinery or chemicals are involved. Accidents at these places of business have been known to lead to fatalities. 

Construction accidents – Again, operating machinery or working at heights at a construction site can be dangerous. Wrongful death could occur here from a lack of safety protocol or other issues.

These are just some of the main circumstances or scenarios that may lead to a wrongful death. Contact a wrongful death lawyer people trust who works in the realm of law to understand more to find out if your or someone you know’s circumstance may constitute a wrongful death case. 

Legal assistance 

Legal assistance is available for these types of cases. Lawyers have ample experience in dealing with these types of cases. These types of cases can be difficult to prove in some instances which is why it is important to have an experienced and skilled professional who can navigate through a case. Dealing with other lawyers and insurance companies can be difficult. That is why many people turn to professionals for assistance with these types of unfortunate circumstances. 

Liability For Accidents On The Golf Course

Personal Injury Attorney

Millions of people across the country enjoy playing golf. Yet, the sport is not without its legal liabilities. Errant golf ball strikes are a common hazard that can result in damage to nearby property, harm to other players, and even death in some more serious circumstances. Additionally, many golf games involve the players drinking during the game or at the clubhouse afterward. While the players themselves should always monitor their own intake and drink responsibly, the golf course may also be responsible for damage caused by their drinking if it sells them the alcohol. A personal injury attorney can determine what type of compensation a victim may be entitled to.

Errant Golf Balls

The question of liability for errant golf balls hinges on whether the person or property that was damaged was actually on the course or simply nearby.  One of the most common types of accidents on the course occurs when one player injures another. The occasional poorly aimed shot can go awry and hit another player at another hole or standing off the course. Ordinarily, landowners, like the golf course, do not have a duty to protect people on their land from obvious dangers, like errant shots on a golf course, but such a duty does arise when the owner can reasonably anticipate the danger. Consequently, if there is an area, such as a clubhouse deck, where missed shots land with some frequency, the course may be liable to the injured player.

Importantly, this protection does not necessarily extend to people who have purchased homes near the golf course. Errant shots do occasionally hit those homes or the people in them, and when that happens courts have found it to be the homeowner’s responsibility. There have been cases where courts have refused to award damages based on the legal doctrine of “assumption of risk,” which means that homeowners who buy houses near a course are aware that shots may occasionally land on their property and they accept that risk when they buy the house.

Alcohol on the Course

That golf courses tend to sell alcohol also implicates something known as “dram shop laws.” These are laws that make alcohol distributors liable for the damage caused by drunken patrons in certain circumstances. These laws allow people who have suffered injury or property damage because of a drunken person to sue the business that furnished the liquor, provided that the business sold enough alcohol to be responsible for the person’s drunkenness and that the drunkenness was the cause of the damage.

Contact a Personal Injury Law Firm Today

If you have been injured in a golf accident because of someone’s negligence, you may be entitled to financial compensation for your losses. If you would like more information or help pursuing an injury case, make sure you speak with a lawyer who is skilled and knowledgeable in injury law. Call an experienced attorney, like a personal injury attorney from a law firm like Yearin Law Office.

Slip and Falls are More Dangerous than You Think

Premises Liability

Slip and falls in the workplace are the second leading cause of accidental death, after auto accidents. In just one year in the United States of America, around 540,000 cases of slips and falls are reported, representing injuries that require hospitalizations and with long-term effects.

As work injury lawyers like our friends at Rispoli & Borneo, P.C. can explain, even a minor accident can cause long term injury – and you shouldn’t pay a single cent out of your own pocket if you experienced a slip and fall on the job. Read on to learn more about slip and fall injuries, and see how the right legal team can make all the difference.

What are the Consequences of a Slip and Fall?

It is a common misconception that slips and falls are minor incidents that are not harmful to health, but that is not the case. These types of accidents can cause serious permanent injuries. Some of the consequences of a slip or fall are:

  • Broken bones
  • Back or spinal injuries that could cause paralysis.
  • Muscle sprains
  • Torn ligaments
  • And even death

Why Do these Accidents Happen?

Slip and falls occur due to different reasons. Sometimes they’re caused by negligence and carelessness. Other times, they’re caused by dangerous conditions such as torn carpets, uneven floors, a lack of lighting, narrow stairs, or wet floors. These simple environmental factors can lead to serious injuries that may even require long term care and rehabilitation.

Depending on how and where the accident occurred, it could be difficult to determine who is responsible. Fortunately, qualified work injury lawyers can help. The right lawyer should have years of experience in slip and fall accidents, and can help you navigate your claim.

Why don’t People Report their Slip and Falls?

Sometimes workers may take an accident at work lightly for fear of being judged, or because they feel intimidated by their work environment. Employees may also downplay their injuries because they were related to an apparently non-catastrophic accident. It may seem silly at the time (or even like an overreaction) but every injury should be reported, no matter how minor.

It’s important to consider the long-term consequences of your injuries, and not take an accident lightly.

What are the Monetary Consequences of Suffering a Slip and Fall?

One of the main issues with getting injured in an accident is that even the slightest injury can cause serious financial problems for yourself. The bills that result from being injured can be astronomical, especially if you don’t have health insurance or good health insurance coverage.

Fortunately, a slip and fall lawyer can help you ensure that these bills are covered by the party or parties responsible for your accident.

In addition to medical bills, another common problem people face after getting injured in an accident is lost wages at work. This can be a major issue because it limits your ability to pay your medical bills and other expenses related to the accident.

If you have suffered a slip or fall, it is important that you contact a Washington DC law firm. we will determine who is responsible for compensating you for your injuries.

What does a Work Injury Lawyer Do?

A work injury lawyer is a legal professional who specializes in various types of accidents caused by a coworker or company to another person. If you slipped, tripped, fell or otherwise injured yourself while working on someone else’s property, it is best to consult with lawyers who are specialists in the field.

The right work injury lawyer can guide you through your case and help you decide whether or not you should take legal action. It is crucial to contact those who will represent your interests. Don’t hesitate: Get in touch with an experienced work injury lawyer today.

Can You Fight A Traffic Ticket?

Have you recently been pulled over for speeding? Or running a stop sign? Or driving without a license? Regardless of the kind of traffic ticket that you have recently been cited, it is important to speak with an experienced traffic ticket attorney about whether it is worth mounting a defense to your alleged infraction. Depending on the unique circumstances that you’re facing, fighting your traffic ticket may be a good investment of your time and energy.

What Exactly Is a Traffic Ticket?

As an experienced traffic lawyer – including those who practice at The Law Offices of Mark T. Hurt – can explain in greater detail, a traffic ticket is a citation handed out by law enforcement to motorists who have allegedly violated traffic laws. Traffic tickets can be written for relatively minor infractions (such as failing to signal before changing lanes), serious infractions (such as reckless driving), and all kinds of “gray area” infractions on the spectrum of traffic laws enforced in each state.

Sometimes, it isn’t worth a motorist’s time and energy to fight a very minor traffic ticket. However, failure to fight a significant traffic ticket could result in significant consequences.

The Pros and Cons of Fighting Traffic Tickets

The primary drawbacks to fighting a traffic ticket are fairly obvious. First, there is no guarantee that you’ll win. In the event of a loss, you will have spent your valuable time, energy, and effort only to thwart those investments. Second, if you invest in an attorney’s assistance and you lose, you’ll need to pay some modest legal fees even though your case didn’t turn out in the way that you had hoped it would.

Yet, the potential benefits of fighting a traffic ticket can be truly significant and worth the risk that you may invest some of your resources into this effort without a guarantee of outcome. First, your insurance premiums might go up as a result of your ticket. If this happens, it may seem like you would be saving money on legal fees by simply paying the cost of the ticket, but it may turn out that you’ll pay more to insurers over time than you would to a lawyer who could potentially get your ticket dismissed. Second, many traffic ticket infractions will cost you points on your license. If you incur too many points in too short a period of time, your license could be suspended. Safeguarding your points now could, therefore, ultimately benefit you later.

It is also worth noting that some traffic tickets may be tied to offenses that could be charged criminally or that someone could hold you liable for in civil court if your infraction caused them to get injured. In these instances, you’ll need to speak with a lawyer about your situation anyway, so fighting your traffic ticket may serve as a natural extension of the representation you’ll need to wage your other legal battle(s) anyway.

Pursuing Personal Injury Compensation - Decorative Scales of Justice in the Courtroom

Pursuing Personal Injury Compensation

Personal Injury Lawyer

Victims of personal injury in the United States can obtain compensation for their losses through the process of filing a personal injury claim. In most claims in or near Des Moines, victims employ the assistance of a personal injury lawyer Des Moines IA residents recommend, from Des Moines Injury Law. The attorney will work with the victim to establish the facts of their case, and determine if there is a valid claim. If the victim does indeed have a potentially valid claim, they can develop a claim, and set goals for compensation the victim will require to cover expenses. Victims of personal injury are often faced with a long and challenging path to recovery, and financial compensation takes some of the worry out of the process. Victims find comfort in knowing that they will be able to pay for loss of property, and pay for current and future medical expenses.

What can I be compensated for following a personal injury?

Obtaining compensation is a central goal of most personal injury cases. Damages can be pursued in any claim where there was damage to personal property or injury, regardless of the level of seriousness, as long as another party can be proved as liable. It is essential to take action as soon as possible following the injury if the victim wishes to pursue damages for their losses.

What does financial compensation usually include?

Compensation includes what you have been billed for already, as well as future expenses that are anticipated as being a direct result of the injury or condition post accident. For example, anticipated future medical issues that are a direct result of the accident. If an injury is sustained during an accident and consequently, physical therapy is required as a part of your recovery program, compensation can be collected from the responsible party to assist with associated PT expenses. 

In the case of personal injury cases, compensation is collected in the form of what are commonly referred to as economic or noneconomic damages. The compensatory damages are said to be economic when they are physical that can be quantified with a dollar amount. The value of economic damages does not change depending on opinions of those evaluating them.

Economic damages:

  • Past and future medical expenses
  • Past and future lost wages
  • Household services
  • Vocational rehabilitation
  • Property damages
  • Out-of-pocket expenses
  • Lost earning capacity
  • Medical expenses may also be included under economic damages. These damages are bills that arise out of the injuries that are caused by the accident.

Other medical expenses that compensation can be collected for:

  • Chronic physical health issues
  • Chronic mental health issues
  • Surgeries
  • Future treatments

Noneconomic damages:

  • Pain
  • Emotional anguish
  • Humiliation
  • Reputation damage
  • Loss of enjoyment of activities
  • Worsening of prior injuries

Common types of personal injury cases

  • Motor vehicle accidents
  • Medical malpractice
  • Wrongful death
  • Workplace accidents
  • Premises liability 
  • Product liability
  • Nursing home abuse
  • Brain injury
  • Dog bites
  • Spinal cord injury

Those who were injured due to the negligence of another party may be eligible to receive compensation for their losses. Victims are encouraged to contact an attorney who specializes in personal injury cases in the area or region where the injury occurred.

Determining Fault For An Auto Accident

Suppose you’ve been injured in a car accident. In that case, the cause of your accident and the fault for your accident must be determined before you can accurately assess whether it is in your best interests to file legal action against others who may be responsible for the harm you’ve suffered. There is one notable exception to this general rule, which applies only in work-related car accident scenarios.

Work-Related Accidents

When work-related accidents cause injury, workers have different compensation opportunities available to them, depending upon whether they are eligible for workers’ comp benefits and depending upon the circumstances of their accident.

Suppose a worker is eligible for workers’ comp benefits (usually when a worker is classified as a part-time or full-time employee). In that case, they are generally entitled to a benefits award if they are injured while engaging in work-related activities. This eligibility applies on a no-fault basis, which means that benefits are awarded even in accident scenarios wherein the injured worker was at fault for the crash. The only exceptions to this rule apply when the worker in question was drunk or otherwise impaired at the time of the crash, the road rage of the worker caused the crash, or the worker was fraudulently trying to get hurt to benefit from a compensation award.

All Other Accident Types

An experienced car accident lawyer can confirm that personal injury lawsuits are fault-based, which means that in order to file a personal injury lawsuit, an injury victim cannot have been totally at fault for their injurious circumstances. For a personal injury lawsuit to be successful, it must be proven that someone other than the injury victim was partially or totally at-fault for the circumstances that caused the victim’s injuries.

This is one of the reasons why it is so important for injury victims (workers and non-workers) to speak with an attorney in the wake of sustaining injury. A lawyer can conduct a thorough and objective investigation into the circumstances of a crash to better ensure that the cause(s) of a crash are accurately assessed and the fault for the accident is properly evaluated. In the event that someone else’s negligence, recklessness, or intentionally harmful conduct caused a victim’s injuries, that victim should be entitled to a personal injury damages award in their favor.

Hostile Work Environments

Hostile Work Environments

It is a sad fact of life that people tend to mistreat others with alarming regularity. Not all mistreatment is malicious, but it doesn’t need to be malicious to be hurtful and consequential in profound ways. In the workplace, individuals are protected from certain kinds of discrimination and harassment as a matter of law. Federal law, for example, protects against discrimination and harassment based on race, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, pregnancy, disability, age, and genetics. State laws often extend well beyond the protections afforded by federal law. Yet, not all instances of discrimination and harassment give rise to a cause of legal action.

When Are Discrimination and Harassment in the Workplace Actionable?

Because people tend to mistreat each other—in ways large and small—so very often and in ways that cannot always be objectively classified as mistreatment, instances of discrimination and harassment must meet certain criteria in order to be considered legally actionable. Without these standards, the sheer volume of mistreatment that occurs in the workplace would overwhelm the courts and the economy.

Generally speaking, actionable workplace discrimination occurs when someone (an applicant or current worker) is treated unfavorably due to their inclusion in one of the protected classes noted above. By contrast, harassment occurs when someone is subjected to unwelcome verbal or physical conduct by virtue of their inclusion in a protected class. As an experienced sex discrimination lawyer – including those who practice at the law firm of Barry P. Goldberg – can explain in greater detail, harassment usually becomes actionable when the nature of the conduct involved is either so egregious or happens so often that it creates a hostile work environment. Various kinds of discriminatory conduct can also result in the establishment of a hostile work environment.

When Does a Hostile Work Environment Exist?

A hostile work environment is created when the discriminatory or harassing mistreatment that someone is experiencing is either so outrageous or pervasive that an objective person would perceive their work environment as intimidating, abusive, or hostile.

It isn’t always easy to know if the situation that a worker finds themselves in could be properly classified as an actionable hostile work environment or not. This is why it is a good idea to speak with an employment lawyer if you are being mistreated. They will be able to clarify your rights and options for you so that you can make decisions about your situation in a truly informed way.

Can Bankruptcy Halt Foreclosure?

Can Bankruptcy Halt Foreclosure?

The question of whether filing for bankruptcy can halt a foreclosure risk is a complex query. The answer to this question largely depends upon which kind of bankruptcy is being filed and how far along a homeowner has progressed along the path to foreclosure. For some homeowners, filing for bankruptcy is an effective way to halt the foreclosure process and to catch up on their outstanding payments. For others, filing for bankruptcy can provide many benefits but halting the foreclosure process isn’t one of them. It is for this reason that it is important to speak with an attorney about your rights and options before making any assumptions about whether filing for bankruptcy will help you to save your home.

The Automatic Stay

When someone files for bankruptcy, they immediately benefit from protections afforded by the automatic stay. As a foreclosure lawyer  – including those who practice at The Law Offices of Ronald I. Chorches – can explain in greater detail, the automatic stay halts almost all collection actions pending against the filer and keeps creditors from filing new collection actions for the duration of a bankruptcy case. As a result, filing for bankruptcy can, in almost all situations, keep a lender who has yet to formally foreclose against a homeowner from initiating such action while the filer’s bankruptcy case remains pending. The automatic stay protections apply regardless of whether filers opt for Chapter 7 bankruptcy relief or Chapter 13 bankruptcy relief.

Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

Due to the advantages of the automatic stay, filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy can delay the foreclosure process by a few weeks or a few months until a filer’s case is resolved. For those who just need a little bit of time to come into money that will allow them to catch up on their overdue payments, filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy may be an effective safeguard against foreclosure. However, for most others, filing for this Chapter of bankruptcy only delays a lender’s foreclosure action and provides virtually no way to directly halt such actions outright moving forward.

Chapter 13 Bankruptcy

Filing for Chapter 13 bankruptcy can provide an effective tool to halt a foreclosure. As the repayment plan for a Chapter 13 bankruptcy petition is 3-5 years, as long as a filer makes good on their repayment schedule, the benefits of the automatic stay will remain in place for the duration of that repayment. The length of repayment for Chapter 13 cases offers homeowners ample time to catch up on overdue payments.