Long-term Payment Plans for Personal Injury Claims

A majority of personal injury claim often choose to have out-of-court settlement for a number of reasons. Settling out-of-court can save both parties from unnecessary expenses and valuable time that long court proceedings often demand. When negotiation occurs for injury claims, it is often understood that the payment would be given in a lump sum. What not many people know is that payment for the compensation can also come in long-term payment plans. Rather than a lump sum payment, some plaintiffs choose to have a structured payment plan that can span over a certain period of time.

Structured payments are a settlement payment plan that both the claimant and the defendant has agreed upon. Some of the settlement will be given in a lump sum, while the rest of the compensation will be a structured payment over an agreed amount of time. When both parties have agreed to the terms of the structured payment, the defendant (or their insurance company) will be responsible of transferring parts of the structured settlement to a separate insurer, typically a life insurance company who practices structured settlement payments.

A number of things can be negotiated and included in a structured settlement, such as the amount of payment to be received and the schedule of payment, the length of the payment plan, whether the lump sum is given at the end or if the payments will end after death or handed over to next of kin. These, and many other factors, can be arranged between the plaintiff and defendant, but it is important for the plaintiff to ensure that the company that will provide the payment is reputable and highly rated. This minimizes the risk of the company going bankrupt or fail, prompting the structured payments to stop. Just as with any negotiation and settlement, there are risks involved when choosing structured payment. Talking with a personal injury lawyer about the possibility of structured payment can help in lowering these risks and work out the best payment plan for the case.

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Aortic Stenosis with Depakote Use

Medical terms always make the essentially simple sound incredibly complex. Take for example congenital aortic stenosis, which may or may not be caused by the mother taking Depakote during the first trimester of pregnancy. Aortic stenosis simply means the valve is narrow on one end, causing some of the blood that should be going out into the aorta (the main blood vessel hat distributes blood and oxygen to the body) goes back into the heart (backflow). Some babies are born with one, two, or four tissue flaps called leaflets that prevent backflow instead of the normal three, and this can make the aortic valve less efficient in keeping the blood from going back in. So in simple terms, the heart has a leaky valve.

Congenital aortic stenosis will not always make life difficult for the baby at once, unless it is really severe. In such cases, the baby may die within two years from congestive heart failure. In many cases, the complications associated with having blood leak back into the heart may not manifest until adulthood, and the only way to fix it is to replace the valve. Symptoms of aortic stenosis include fainting spells, shortness of breath when physically active, and chest pains. Aortic stenosis is detectable in asymptomatic patients during a routine physical examination.

The link between maternal ingestion of Depakote and congenital aortic stenosis has not been established in any study. According to the website of Williams Kherkher, Depakote is associated with many birth defects. Depakote (valproate) is known to interfere with the development of the fetus by blocking some actions of the fetal DNA. It has been more closely associated with anencephaly, where the fetus is born with an underdeveloped skull and brain. In some cases, it is speculated that its effects may extend beyond the first trimester, as in hydranencephaly, where the developed cerebral hemispheres of the brain are deprived of oxygen. This results in cell death and eventual resorption. It does not take much to imagine that such systemic interference may lead to cardiac malformations as well.

If you or your child was born with aortic stenosis, and Depakote is in the picture, you may have a case against the drug’s manufacturer.

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Types of Battery

In Wisconsin, there are different types of battery with ranging punishments. Substantial battery and aggravated battery are two levels that can be committed, and factors of each unique situation will determine what the penalty is. Actions can be categorized as a misdemeanor or felony, and convictions alter one’s life thereafter.

Substantial battery is the lesser degree of battery. This can occur in various ways, however all actions result in substantial bodily harm to the victim. Injuries that indicate substantial battery include lacerations that require serious medical attention, broken bones, loss of teeth, burns, ruptured blood vessels, or concussions. This type of battery is considered a Class I felony, and the repercussions are up to three and a half years of prison, and a fine up to $10,000.

The second level of battery is aggravated battery. This type is more serious, and occurs when great bodily harm is evident as the result of the violence. Aggravated battery happens when a person intentionally causes great bodily harm, intentionally or unintentionally, or when a person does something that puts another at risk to receive great bodily harm. Such examples are cases in which the victim is left with permanent loss of a body part, death, or is put at the risk of death. These types of crimes are considered Class E or Class H felonies, depending on the severity of the situation. Class E felonies are punishable by up to 15 years in prison and a maximum fine of $50,000. Class H felonies entail lesser consequences, and are punishable by up to six years in prison and a maximum fine of $10,000.

A Waukesha Criminal Defense Attorney should acknowledge battery convictions can damage one’s reputation and career. Often, the penalty can be as drastic as to permanently alter one’s life. With legal representation, it is possible to minimize the consequences of a battery conviction, and diminish the negative effects of the situation.

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Surgical Errors

When stepping into a hospital, a patient expects to be treated by experienced professionals that are diligent in helping them with their ailments. Yet it is not uncommon to leave these facilities in worse shape than a person entered because of the negligent actions of staff or physicians. Every year, roughly 4,000 surgical errors occur that lead to severe consequences and even death. These medical malpractices cost around $1.3 billion dollars every year in lawsuit and damages.

Surgeons are required discuss common complications of surgery but do not warn patients about risks that a negligent staff could cause. Surgeons refer to surgical errors as “never events.” They are so called because these events should never happen. The years of training and practice that surgeons are required to accumulate are required to eliminate the possibility of these sometimes fatal mistakes occurring. Out of the thousands of surgical errors made annually, 59 percent result in injuries or complications, 33 percent result in permanent injury to the patient, and 6.6 percent result in death.

Common medical malpractice incidents in the operating occur when a surgeon or nursing staff leaves a foreign object within the body cavity, the wrong procedure is performed, or the wrong site was operated upon. Some incidents occur out of negligence by staffs who disregard safety precautions set in place to protect patients from these exact events.

“Time outs” to match medical records are frequently implemented to double or triple check that the correct patient is being operated on. Most operating rooms practice counting sponges and other medical utensils before, during, and after procedures to reduce the rate of foreign objects being left in the body. And generally surgical checklists are in place to keep the doctors and their attending staff accountable for their actions. The consequences for these surgical errors can be dire, affecting the life of a patient and their family permanently. Consult an attorney in your area if you believe you or a loved one is a victim of a surgical error caused by a negligent surgical staff.

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The Aftermath of Burn Injuries

There is a principle in the first law of thermodynamics that says that energy can neither be created nor destroyed. Wood, when consumed by flame, simply turns to ash and smoke and rubble. It is not destroyed – rather, it is irreversibly changed. This is the fate that awaits victims of burn accidents. Though, in the very worst of cases, the victims of burn accidents do not live to see light again, there are some things that are more difficult to handle.

Such is the case of those who must now live on and survive after going through a burn accident. You know better than to treat potentially hazardous things with anything but care – the same cannot be said for everyone, though. And some people, through their negligence of how their actions could affect other people, could cause some serious injury.

Accidents happen, yes, but if it could have been avoided but wasn’t due to simple negligence or carelessness? Choices can be made freely, yes, but the consequences of these choices are not always quite as kind. The victims of burn injuries have more than just physical injuries to care for as there are loads of financial constraints that must now be accounted for.

Sometimes, all it takes is a few careless seconds to cause irreparable damage to someone and nothing is quite as painful as surviving through degrees of burn injuries. The World Health Organization estimates that there are over 200,000 deaths due to household fires each year, most of which occur in low to middle income families. If you are an innocent victim who has now been made to suffer burn injuries that have irreversibly changed your physical state, as well as loss of precious and hard-earned possessions, due to simple negligence, it is your right and responsibility to seek legal aid in order to claim the costs of reparations owed to you.

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How a DWI can Affect Your Life

The blood alcohol concentration (BAC) limit set by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is 0.08%. This is observed in all US states and enforced on all drivers aged at least 21 years old (for truck drivers and all other commercial vehicle drivers, the limit is 0.04% and for those under 21 years in age, it is zero tolerance). Thus, anyone who will be caught with a BAC level above the stipulated limits can be charged with DWI, which means driving while intoxicated – a serious traffic violation to which heavy penalties are imposed.

DWI or DUI (driving under the influence, the term used in some states) has been identified by the NHTSA as among the top causes of car accidents, which go beyond five million every year (other major causes of accidents are reckless driving, overspeeding, driver error and driving distraction, which is particularly topped by texting or use of a cellphone while driving).

Anyone convicted of a DWI offense can suffer costly fines, time in jail, suspension or revocation of license, mandatory attendance in a DUI/DWI school and community service. In cases wherein the violation involves injuries to, or death of, an innocent victim, or if the violation has been committed repeatedly, the court can require the driver to acquire an SR-22 form, otherwise known as Certificate of Financial Responsibility (CFR) form. The SR-22 last for three years and requires higher auto liability insurance premiums. The court can also require that an Ignition Interlock (also known as Breath Alcohol Ignition Interlock Device or BAIID) be installed in the violator’s vehicle. This device, which has a pre-determined limit of 0.02%, is particularly designed to detect the presence of alcohol in the driver’s breath. If alcohol is detected, then the device will prevent the vehicle from starting.

DWI is a serious offense that no driver will want to be convicted of (considering the fact that even a charge can affect a person’s future even long after the offense has been committed). Thus, it is absolutely important that, if ever charged with this type of offense, the driver should contact only a highly-competent lawyer for the strong defense that may save him/her from a possible conviction or maximum penalties.

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Overdiagnosis May be Considered Medical Malpractice

Quite a number of medical malpractice lawsuits are based on claims that the healthcare professional or provider made a medical error resulting in any number of serious gaffes; failure to diagnose, misdiagnosis, medication errors, wrong site surgery, retained surgical instrument, and so on. All of these are based on the allegation that somehow a mistake was made as pointed out on the website of Milwaukee personal injury lawyers at Habush Habush & Rottier S.C. ®. Overdiagnosis is slightly different.

For one thing, overdiagnosis is not an error per se. Many medical conditions are diagnosed based on a test or series of tests that have a certain rate of false positives. In other words, the tests may be carried out correctly and interpreted correctly, but positive indications of a medical condition may be wrong. This is normal, so it could be argued that because the tests were not infallible that the physician who makes an overdiagnosis is not at fault.

Physicians and other healthcare providers are trained to assess the condition of patients based on a number of factors, one of which is laboratory tests. However, they have the discretion to question test results, knowing that false positives are possible, given a set of circumstances that appear to negate a positive result, or to temper a diagnosis because the results show incipient disease but at a level that is negligible or a natural sign of aging.

The most commonly overdiagnosed conditions include cancer, chronic kidney disease, low testosterone, and pre-dementia. Most people have the risk factors indicative of these and other medical conditions but many remain asymptomatic, or die of causes unrelated to these diseases before it has time to develop. Some do develop early signs of disease but which spontaneously regress with reasonable care.

There are many ways that person is harmed by negligence. The danger of overdiagnosis is the effect on quality of life. People are so scared of becoming sick that even when there is every indication of good health, they undergo unnecessary treatments that are not only expensive but may have unanticipated consequences that have an adverse effect on health worse than the feared condition. A healthcare provider that knowingly overdiagnoses may be considered negligent when it leads to injury or harm to the patient.

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How to Maintain your Sport Fishing Yacht

A sport fishing yacht is not just something you jump into when the whim hits you. There are certain things you need to do to maintain it so that it will last you a long time. Aside from the obvious such as washing our your deck, repairing holes and any other structural damage, getting it custom fitted, and keeping your engine in good running condition, there are two things you may not think about.

Checking the Prop

You should make it a habit of checking the prop shaft to check if there is any wayward fishing lines entangled down there. Fishing lines can cause a lot of damage if it gets wound up in the prop shaft. It melts and can compromise the seal, letting salt water into the prop and corroding the metal parts. Replacing the prop can be very expensive, so if you notice a brownish fluid trailing you from under the propeller, it is a sign that the prop shaft seal may have been breached. Have it checked and replaced as soon as possible.

Use Out-Rodders

If you want spread out your lures or extend your rod, but don’t have outriggers, you can use a device called out-rodders to help you out. Made of anodize aluminum or stainless steel, a pair of these out-rodders are vertical tubes designed to attach to gunwale rod holders.

The purpose of an out-rodder is to widen your trolling spread on both sides of your sport fishing yacht; others used them to keep the rods at a lower angle when drifting. When using out-rodders, you have to attach safety lines in case the going gets rough.

These are just a couple of shout-outs for those who are seriously into sport fishing, but many modifications can be installed before you hit the water. Get a custom luxury yacht outfitter to help you out.

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What it means to Have Hurricane Damage

At least 16 states were directly affected when Hurricane Sandy swept through the east coast of the US as well as the parts of the Caribbean, first making landfall in Jamaica in October 2012. According to the website of law firm Williams Kherkher it devastated the northeastern part of the US from Maine to Virginia. It was the storm that gave birth to the term “Frankenstorm,” coined by Jim Cisco of the Hydrometeorological Prediction Center to denote a hurricane that merges with a cold front.

The final toll for hurricane damages in the US was estimated at $65 billion, making it one of the costliest hurricanes in US history second only to Hurricane Katrina that devastated Louisiana and 5 others states to the tune of $108 billion. But how does that all that hurricane damage translate to individuals?

Hurricane Damages

The term “hurricane” is culled from the Spanish huracán which in turn is derived from the Taino name for the god of storms Juracán. It is said that when Juracán was upset, he would send wind and rain down upon the people.

Hurricane damage usually results from massive amounts of rainfall and high sustained winds. The rain often causes floods, going to double digits in height when it falls, especially when it pushes a storm suge inland causing considerable property damage as well threatening the lives of people. In Katrina a more than 1,800 died in the US and 135 went missing in flood waters, while at least 286 were killed in Sandy.

High winds are responsible for doing considerable structural damage to commercial and residential buildings wherever they are. Being on high ground may offer some protection from floods but not winds. Hurricane Sandy, for example, was a Category 3 hurricane at its peak with wind speeds of up to 1115 mph. The real damage though was because it was sustained over a wide area, over 1,000 miles in diameter.

The costs were high, and those with windstorm coverage did not fare much better as insurance companies hedged about paying claims. If your homeowners’ or any other insurance claim is in dispute, you need to request assistance from experienced insurance lawyers to protect your rights.

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The Problem of Claiming Social Security Disability Benefits in the US

Disability benefit payments in the US reached a record-breaking high in March 2013 at $8.85 million; roughly 21% more than what it was in 2007 when the economic recession first started to bite hard. In 2010, the Social Security Administration (SSA) paid out about $128 billion in disability benefits, compared to the $18 billion (adjusted for 2010) in 1970. This upsurge in disability claims has the SSA scrambling to fund the payouts, and at the present rate the program will be unable to pay out full benefits across the board by 2016 due to insolvency. In other words, the SSA is running out of money.

Analysts state that this sharp increase in disability benefits cannot be explained by a corresponding downturn of the average working American’s health or worsening impairment. Because this trend began appearing when the economy took a plunge in 2007, the belief is that the Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits to sustain unemployment rather than to support workers who are no longer able to work because of health problems. According to the website of the law firm LaMarca Law Group, P.C., this is somewhat alleviated when a worker qualifies for workers’ compensation, but it doesn’t address the basic problem of long-term unemployment.

The SSA as a consequence has become much more circumspect about processing SSDI claims to weed out those that are not qualified to receive benefits under the program’s mandate. The SSDI routinely denies 70% of all claims, and the appeals process is even more stringent as well as tedious. Making it difficult to make a claim aims to weed out those who are unable or unwilling to find work but are not really disabled. This is a big problem for those who are genuinely in need of help because of their health impairments.

If you are permanently disabled and unable to work, you may qualify for SSDI benefits. Enlist the help of an experienced SSDI lawyer to process your claim.

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