Posts tagged with "lawyer"

Kaelen Felix Land Rover

Does Car Insurance Cover Hail Damage to My Car?

On average, the cost of repair for hail damage to a car is about $2,500

If you recently had a bad storm that damaged your car, you might not have the money to repair the car, especially if you weren’t expecting that extra cost. 

However, in some cases, you could turn to your insurance to help you out. But when does that work? We’ll break down everything you need to know, so make sure you keep reading!

Your Coverage

Before you can submit a claim for the insurance company to cover your hail damage, you’ll need to check your insurance policy first to figure out if you have a hail damage claim.

If you only have liability coverage, then you’re not covered for hail damage. Liability coverage will only protect you if you cause damage to someone else’s vehicle in an accident. 

However, if you have comprehensive coverage, you might be able to submit a claim. This will let you submit a claim to have any damage to your car paid for. This includes things like an animal damaging your car, a tree falling on it, glass shattering, or hail damage. 

If you know that there is a big storm coming, you may not be able to automatically sign up for comprehensive insurance. Insurance companies normally put a hold on when you can sign up so that you don’t do it just for catastrophic events. This is why you should have insurance at all times. 

The Deductible

If you have comprehensive insurance, you’ll likely also have a deductible. This is the amount you’ll have to pay out of your own pocket before the insurance steps in and covers some of it. 

If you have a higher deductible, you might also have a lower premium, so consider that if you’re new to signing up for comprehensive insurance. 

However, if you live in an area where hail storms happen often, you’ll have to figure out whether you can afford the out-of-pocket deductible if you need to submit a claim. 

In some instances, the insurance company might waive the deductible if it affects the glass of your car. 

Your Premium

Whenever you make a claim, it gets added to your insurance record. Every time you submit a claim, it could end up affecting what you pay for car insurance, but that’s only if you submit a lot of claims over a short period of time.

Deciding to file a claim will depend on how much damage you have. If the damage isn’t that bad, it might save you money, in the long run, to just pay for it yourself. However, if your car is going to have thousands of dollars in hail damage and you don’t have the money to pay for it, it might be better to risk the higher premium later on.

How to File a Claim

If you decide that you do want to file a claim for hail damage to car, you should do it as soon as possible. 

You’ll do it the same way that you’ve filed other claims for your car before. Contact the insurance company either on the phone or online. You should do it as soon as the storm is gone.

If it’s a large storm, your neighbors in the area will likely be doing the same thing, so you want to make sure you try and get in as soon as possible to avoid waiting for hours to reach someone. 

Once you actually get to file the claim, the insurance company will send a claims adjuster to look at the damage and figure out how much they will pay you to fix the hail damage. 

How to Fix the Damage

Whether the insurance company decides to help you or not, you’ll still need to then fix the damages. 

If your car is already paid for and the damage isn’t too bad, you could decide to just leave the dents. But if you still have a loan on the car, you’ll need to find someone to repair it. 

For those who did file a claim, the claim adjuster will help you find an auto body shop and get an estimate for the repair. For those who didn’t have the insurance to cover it, you can find your own auto body shop and get quotes on your own.

If you’re going to do that, make sure you shop around so that you can find the best deal possible. 

How to Protect it in the Future

To avoid all of this in the future, you’ll also have to figure out how to protect your car from future hail storms.

If you live somewhere that constantly has hail storms, you should look into preventative measures. Some of them include just buying a car cover to prevent hail damage that you can keep in the back of your trunk. If a hail storm pops up, you can easily pull over and cover your car to help reduce the impact from the hail.

Weather apps can also be useful and send you alerts when a storm is about to pop up. If you have enough time, you should try and find a garage or a covered area to help stop the hail from damaging your car. 

Learn More About Hail Damage to a Car

These are only a few things to know about hail damage to a car, but there are many more tips on how to get it fixed.

We know that dealing with car problems of any kind are a nuisance and can be stressful, especially if you don’t know how to solve it. That’s why we’re here to help you!

If you enjoyed this article, make sure that you explore our website to find more articles just like this one!

Kaelen Felix illustrates divorce story for 360 magazine

What Do I Need to Bring to a Divorce Attorney Consultation?

Divorce is a rocky road, but it’s better to take the bumpy off-ramp to safety than keeping pedal to the metal on a burning highway of a marriage. If you’ve decided to lawyer up for your divorce, you need to be prepared to maximize your time with the attorney by getting your documents in order, asking the right questions, and getting sound legal advice about what you can expect from your case.

Goals for your divorce

Have somewhat of a game plan going into the consultation process. If it helps to write it down so you can get your thoughts in order. Think it over and draft out some ideas in your mind of what you think the best outcome would be. What do you want at the end of this?

Some goals to think about may be maintaining certain assets. Write down what financial outcome you have in mind. Think about shared items and what you want. Who gets the car? What about the dog? 

If you have kids, they are probably at the forefront of your mind right now. Think about how you envision a custody arrangement working out, and then decide what would be best for the children and also as good as possible for you. 

Your lawyer is your confidant, and they will stick with you through the divorce (provided you continue to pay them!). But even though your attorney will advise you, head into the consultation with the mindset and attitude you want to be seen with if your divorce goes to court. With a good mindset and clear head, approach this meeting as a moment to clearly state what you want and how they can help you make it work. 

Questions you should ask

Naturally, you might have many questions before meeting with your attorney. You should write them down ahead of time so you don’t forget to get the answers you need. Don’t be embarrassed about looking at notes while you meet with an attorney. The clearer you are and the more information you provide, the better equipped your attorney will be to help you through this divorce. 

Some of the things you will want to find out from an attorney during your consultation are what you can expect the process to look like and what your attorney is like in the courtroom. Are they an aggressive defender or a calm and steady advocate in the courtroom? 

It’s also important to know what your attorney’s communication style is like. How frequently will they communicate with you throughout the legal process? How often can you contact them and how will they bill you? Find out the costs involved.

In addition to asking questions, you want to bring your honesty to the meeting. Be frank and forthcoming with your attorney about your strengths and weaknesses and ask them how they view your case, your situation, and your likely outcomes. 

Documents, records (evidence!)

When it comes to bringing relevant and important documentation to show your divorce attorney, the more the better. There are a lot of documents that are important to show your attorney and that can be used as evidence on your behalf down the line

Financial records are important, particularly in joint accounts. Remember, you are still responsible for your divorce. This means that while your attorney will help you search for discrepancies in your joint accounts, things that would indicate suspicious withdrawals or payments or transfers, you should also scour these records yourself. 

Any documented agreements with your spouse need to be at the top of this pile too. If you have a prenuptial agreement (prenup), bring it with you as that is a paramount legal document during a divorce. 

Evidence of problems is also important. If your divorce is taking place under particularly messy circumstances, you need to be ready, and your lawyer does too. Threatening messages, abusive voicemails, crazy screenshots, photographs showing illegal or dangerous actions by your spouse, evidence of destructive or violent behavior, all of that needs to be seen by your lawyer so they can provide you with vital counsel. 

Here are all the basics you want to have covered for your consultation:

  • Goals and questions written down
  • Prenuptial arrangements or other written agreements
  • Joint tax returns or income information
  • Bank account records
  • Physical or photographic evidence of wrongdoing, cheating, harm, or abuse

Why you should speak to a lawyer following a personal injury 

Personal injury claims may relate to any injury where the person or company responsible for your physical or mental suffering could have reasonably done more to prevent the injury. There are many different ways this can come about, whether it be a slip in the workplace or a car accident that wasn’t your fault (find a car accident lawyer in the city of Chicago if you have been affected). Let’s look at why you should speak to a lawyer following a personal injury. 

The legal system is complicated

Beginning a claim for personal injury compensation is not as straightforward as you might think. The process is, in fact, multifaceted. For example, the outcome of any claim will be based on evidence – where there is little or no evidence, the courts may not see fit to reward compensation. This means that starting any case begins with gathering relevant evidence. Next, the case must be filed in the appropriate way with the courts, and the other side must be informed of your intention to prosecute. If you don’t have an in-depth understanding of the legal system, speak to a lawyer for more information about beginning a claim for personal injury compensation.

Claims move faster when there is structure

All too often, people believe that their claim for personal injury compensation will, sort of, just, take care of itself, as long as they make their situation known to the person or company responsible for having caused the injury. Unfortunately, you may find that the person or company responsible for having caused your injury is slow to progress your grievance towards a mutually agreeable solution. In essence, you could find that following an initial interest in your well-being, their interest begins to wane, and you could face unanswered emails and unreturned calls. By speaking to a personal injury lawyer, you will be in a position to understand the structure of the claims process, meaning you will be able to stop relying on the other side to do the right thing and you will instead be able to put in motion a meaningful progression towards the outcome you desire.

Challenge the other side’s valuation of your claim

Some people may not realise that when an offer is made by the other side, the quoted settlement figure is not necessarily the final figure that must be accepted. The whole point in the offer is to bring the case to a close, thus avoiding court and therefore keeping costs down (the majority of personal injury compensation claims do not progress to court for this reason). By speaking to a personal injury lawyer who has experience in your type of claim, you stand to learn more about what kind of settlement offer represents a fair valuation of your claim and what kind of settlement offers fall short of bringing your claim to a close.

Lawyers have a greater understanding of what to include in your claim

Your personal injury compensation claim is not limited to claiming for obvious things such as lost earnings and damage to personal property. By speaking to a lawyer, you could learn that, depending on your circumstances, your claim could include factors such as ongoing and future medical bills. Always speak to a lawyer for more information if you are unsure.    

Employee Employment Rights in California

As an employer and employee, there are certain rights and laws that you should familiarize yourself with since these laws impact current, former, and future employees of a company. A lot of lawsuits that companies find themselves wrapped up in involve simple disputes that could have been avoided had everyone known and followed the laws. Both sides need to know the laws when it comes to employee rights and they are constantly changing and evolving to make it better for everyone involved. When employee rights are intentionally violated, one should seek out an employment lawyer

What Are Some of the Biggest Employee Employment Rights in California?

One of the biggest sections of the employee employment rights in the state of California has to do with discrimination. While discrimination is illegal at both the state and federal level, there’s still discrimination happening all over. Even though the Civil Rights Act of 1964 made discrimination illegal, it’s still a huge problem for companies as the rights evolve for certain groups.

  • It’s illegal for a company to discriminate against someone due to their gender or sex. A job applicant cannot be treated unfairly due to their gender identity. In California, this includes the transgender community. Both men and women also should be paid equally for equal work which was mandated in the Equal Pay Act.
  • You cannot be discriminated against for your nationality, race, and religion due to laws established by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. The Civil Rights Act of 1965 makes it federally illegal for an employer to discriminate against anyone for these characteristics. An employer cannot hire, fire, discipline, demote, harass, or refuse to hire someone based on race, religion, color, or national origin.
  • An employee also has rights when it comes to disabilities and the Americans with Disabilities Act protects employees with those issues. Employers cannot discriminate against someone with a disability, which includes hiring, not hiring, firing, demoting, or reassigning someone. Reasonable accommodations are expected to be given by the employer, such as more breaks if the person is diabetic and needs medication or needs food. If the person is in a wheelchair, proper parking spaces and accommodations must be made free of charge to that employee.
  • It’s also illegal for an employer to discriminate based on age due to the Age Discrimination in Employment Act. An employer cannot fire or refuse to hire someone due to them being over the age of 40. It’s illegal for any company to fire older employees just to bring in younger ones at much lower pay.

California Wage & Hour Employee Rights

It’s important to note that in California, the wage and hour laws are only applicable to those that are non-exempt. Meaning, if you’re not a full-time employee or you’re an independent contractor, the overtime and meal break laws will not apply. Exempt employees often include those in administrative, professional, and executive roles.

  • Employers are required to pay an employee the minimum wage which changes quite often. By the year 2022, California will make it required that companies provide a $15 an hour minimum wage.
  • You also have the right to receive overtime pay if you work more than 40 hours in one week or more than 8 hours in one day. An employer cannot try to get around these rules by demanding an employee work off the clock. If there are more than 12 hours of work in a day, then the employer has to pay double time.
  • Meal breaks must be given if an employee works for more than five hours in one day and the meal break must be 30 minutes or more. If an employee works over 10 hours in one day, then they will also get an additional meal break of 30 minutes. Rest periods are a right for all employees as well. It’s a right that those within the non-exempt category get at least one 10-minute break every four hours.

Termination & At-Will Laws

California law is that most employees work in an “at-will” category, meaning that an employee can fire you at any time for any reason. The employer doesn’t have to justify the firing but it cannot be termination based on retaliation or discrimination. An example of this would be if someone was fired after they filed a sexual harassment complaint against a co-worker. Being fired for filing that complaint would be illegal. If there was discrimination or retaliation at play in the firing, a wrongful termination lawsuit would be justified. For overtime and unpaid wages, consult with an unpaid and overtime lawyer.

Ruth Bader Ginsburg illustration by Kaelen Felix for 360 MAGAZINE.

Ruth Bader Ginsburg

By Cassandra Yany

Ruth Bader Ginsburg died Friday after her long battle with cancer. The 87-year-old Supreme Court justice was a trailblazer who continuously worked to end gender discrimination and preserve our civil liberties. 

The Supreme Court announced Friday that Ginsburg passed away at her Washington D.C. home due to complications from metastatic pancreatic cancer. She had previously overcome lung, liver and colon cancer. In July, she revealed that the cancer had returned, but that she would continue to serve on the Supreme Court.

Ginsburg’s revolutionary career started when she graduated at the top of her class from Cornell University, earning a Bachelor’s degree in government. Two years later, she attended Harvard Law School with her husband, Martin Ginsburg. There, she was one of only nine women in her class of over 500 students, according to NPR.

During their time at Harvard, Martin was diagnosed with testicular cancer, so Ruth would take notes for the two of them and help him with his work, all while trying to juggle being a new mom. When Martin landed a job at a firm in New York, the family packed up and Ruth finished her education at Columbia University. 

Once Ginsburg finished school, she began to experience the discrimination that came with being a female lawyer. According to TIME, she was unable to secure a position at a premier law firm or one of the Supreme Court clerkships, regardless of the fact that she had been the first students to serve on both the Harvard and Columbia Law reviews, and graduated at the top of her class. These jobs were instead easily given to males who had ranked lower than her in school. This led her to work a lower court clerkship and teach at the Rutgers Law Newark campus.

At Rutgers, she co-founded the Women’s Rights Law Reporter. While she was there, she learned that she wasn’t earning the same wage as one of her male counterparts. The dean attributed this pay disparity to the fact that the male professor had a family to support, while Ginsburg’s husband already had a good-paying job. This type of discrimination caused her to hide her second pregnancy.

After her son was born, Ginsburg began teaching at Columbia, becoming the university’s first tenured female professor. There, she also co-authored the first case book on discrimination law. She later went on to co-found the Women’s Rights Project of the American Civil Liberties Union in 1972.

During her work as a lawyer, Ginsburg established that equal protection under the law, as stated in the 14th Amendment, should extend to gender. She won five out of the six cases that she argued before the Supreme Court on gender discrimination. She often chose to find this prejudice in cases where males were the plaintiffs being discriminated against, as seen in the 2018 film On the Basis of Sex. 

In 1980, Jimmy Carter appointed Ginsburg as a judge in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia. She became the second woman on the Supreme Court, and the first Jewish justice since 1969 when she was appointed by Bill Clinton in 1993. During her time, she eliminated almost 200 laws that discriminated against women. 

Ginsburg also fought for the rights of immigrants, the mentally ill, and members of the LGBTQ+ community. She approved gay marriage in the case of Obergefell v. Hodges, stating that if you can’t deny a 70-year-old couple the right to marriage due to their inability to procreate, you can’t deny a gay couple of that right either.

Ginsburg supported women’s reproductive rights, fighting for the coverage of contraceptives despite anyone’s religious beliefs. At the time of Roe v. Wade, she litigated a case where a pregnant Air Force captain was told she would have to have an abortion in order to return to her job. She noted the hypocrisy present in this case— that the U.S. government was encouraging abortion – and found that it served as a clear example of why women should have the right to make their own life decisions.

Ginsburg’s passing gives Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and President Trump the ability to appoint a new justice, despite her dying wish to not be replaced until after a new president is elected. This opportunity could make the Supreme Court more right-leaning and jeopardize cases like Roe v. Wade that are at the forefront of equal rights movements. 

This comes four years after McConnell’s 11-month Republican blockade of President Obama’s nominee for the court, where he argued “that a president shouldn’t be able to seat a new justice in the final year of their term.” Obama noted this in a statement released early Saturday, where he said “A basic principle of law— and of everyday fairness— is that we apply rules with consistency, and not based on what’s convenient or advantageous in the moment.”

After the news broke Friday night of Ginsburg’s death, hundreds of people gathered outside the Supreme Court to pay tribute and create a memorial on the building’s steps. Many signs have since been left outside of the court honoring her legacy.

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Saturday morning that there will be a statue built in Ginsburg’s hometown of Brooklyn to “serve as a physical reminder of her many contributions to the America we know today…”

Trump issued a proclamation Saturday ordering flags to be flown at half-staff until sunset on the day of interment “As a mark of respect for Ruth Bader Ginsburg…”

RBG will be dearly missed by Americans on both sides of the aisle. We have lost a longtime champion of equal rights, but her legacy will never be forgotten.

Juvenile Law Center – Board of Directors

By Cassandra Yany

Juvenile Law Center announced Wednesday the appointment of four new members to the Board of Directors. Khaliah Ali, Daniel Okonkwo, Robert Parker and Eli Segal will join the governing body of the national organization, based in Philadelphia. The center is the country’s first nonprofit public interest law firm for children’s rights.

Meet the new members:

Khaliah Ali

Khaliah Ali, the daughter of boxing legend and social justice activist Muhummad Ali, is a fashion designer, author and humanitarian. She first connected with Juvenile Law Center after she read about the child abuse crisis at Glen Mills Schools in Delaware County, PA where she resides. This led her to begin speaking and writing in support of the organization’s fight for children in juvenile facilities.

“I am so honored to serve on Juvenile Law Center’s board,” Ali said. “Additionally as the daughter of the late boxer Muhammad Ali, I am honored to help curate my father‘s legacy through such a laudable cause.”

R. Daniel Okonkwo, Esq.

R. Daniel Okonkwo, Esq. is an attorney and public policy expert with significant experience in the policy, advocacy and nonprofit sectors. Okonkwo is the Vice President (Relationship Manager) in the Office of Nonprofit Engagement at JPMorgan Chase and Co., where he is responsible for building relationships with key stakeholders and grantmaking in the Mid-Atlantic region. He also manages a national grant portfolio that focuses on nonprofit capacity building and civil rights organizations.

“I am thrilled and honored to join Juvenile Law Center’s Board of Directors,” said Okonkwo. “The organization has been at the forefront of the work to ensure that young people are protected from unjust treatment in the various systems that impact their lives. Juvenile Law Center is an organization that I have admired for a long time and I look forward to supporting their work on behalf of young people across the country.”

Robert P. Parker

Robert P. Parker spent 14 years as a partner in the Litigation Department of Paul, Weiss before joining a D.C.-based technology/litigation focused firm in 2013. His practice centers on complex civil matters involving technology, regulatory and commercial issues. Parker represents some of the world’s most established companies, as well as start-up enterprises in a variety of commercial and litigation matters. He is ranked among Washington D.C.’s Super Lawyers in the area of IP litigation and has previously served as the chairman for the National Council of Adoption’s Board of Directors.

“Too often, children and teens become lost in the juvenile justice system – civil and criminal. The impact on their lives, their families, and society at large is beyond calculation,” said Parker. “I am delighted to join Juvenile Law Center’s efforts to ensure that no more juveniles get lost in our courts or in their placements.”

Eli Segal

Eli Segal is a partner at the law firm of Troutman Pepper, where he focuses on representing journalists in First Amendment matters, colleges and universities in their unique legal issues, and other businesses and individuals within the spectrum of commercial litigation. He is the co-chair of Troutman Pepper’s First Amendment and Newsroom practice.

“I volunteered at Juvenile Law Center years ago during college and law school and am thrilled to have the opportunity to contribute again to the organization’s vitally important work,” said Segal.

Juvenile Law Center says it is proud to welcome these distinguished individuals to its Board of Directors. “Our Board of Directors is an integral part of Juvenile Law Center and it is a joy and privilege to work with them,” said Sue Mangold, the Chief Executive Officer. “We are thrilled to welcome Khaliah Ali, Daniel Okonkwo, Robert Parker and Eli Segal. Each is already engaged in our work and brings valuable expertise and experience to our board.”

About Juvenile Law Center

Juvenile Law Center advocates for rights, dignity, equity and opportunity for youth in the foster care and justice systems.

Founded in 1975, Juvenile Law Center is the first non-profit, public interest law firm for children in the country. We fight for youth through litigation, appellate advocacy and submission of amicus (friend-of-the-court) briefs, policy reform, public education, training, consulting, and strategic communications. Widely published and internationally recognized as leaders in the field, Juvenile Law Center has substantially shaped the development of law and policy on behalf of youth. We strive to ensure that laws, policies, and practices affecting youth advance racial and economic equity and are rooted in research, consistent with children’s unique developmental characteristics, and reflective of international human rights values. For more information about Juvenile Law Center’s work, visit www.JLC.org.

Sara Sandman, 360 MAGAZINE, illustration

Who’s Liable When an Uber Driver is Involved in an Accident?

Whether you’re a driver or a passenger, the last thing you’d want to imagine is being involved in a car crash. A car accident is often a deadening experience that, in addition to causing physical and emotional pain, can wreak havoc to the victim’s financial health. But accidents do happen from time to time, and they don’t come knocking at anyone’s door.

Since its founding in 2009, Uber has grown to become inarguably the most popular cab service not only in the US but in many other countries around the world. When you’re new in the city and want to navigate from one point to the other, you just call an Uber and you’re good to go. You get into a club, take several shots and you feel you’re not confident enough to drive yourself home, you can simply leave your vehicle, call an Uber and come pick your vehicle the next day when you’re not intoxicated. They’re an affordable and highly convenient means of transport.

However, this is not to say that an Uber driver cannot get into a car crash, which may arise from his negligence or the negligence of another driver. If you’ve been hurt in an Uber crash or another ridesharing service, the folks at http://www.brookslawgroup.com/car-accident-lawyer/uber-lyft-accidents/ say that finding an accident lawyer should be one of the first things to do. This is because car accident issues can sometimes be complicated, lengthy, and emotionally draining if you approach it alone. With a good car accident lawyer, the process of seeking compensation for your injuries and losses becomes smooth and less stressful, giving you enough time and peace of mind to heal and get back to your normal life. 
The big question, however, is, who’s liable for the damages in case this happens?

Car Insurance

In essence, all drivers are required to carry car insurance to be on the road. Remember, most cars under the Uber umbrella are actually owned by third parties or the drivers themselves. But since Uber is a large, well-reputed brand, many cab drivers choose to operate under Uber instead of conducting business as individuals or under other smaller ridesharing services. The good thing is that before Uber accepts a driver, they have to carry car insurance, which is meant to protect them from liability in case they were at fault in n auto accident.

Who’s Held Liable?

Now, if you or a loved one has been injured in an uber crash, liability lies in the driver who caused the accident. In other words, there are various scenarios to it. You could be a passenger in the Uber or a passenger/driver in the other vehicle. Either way, the driver who is found at fault for the crash (or their insurance company) should be the one to cover the resulting damages, including medical costs and compensation for your losses, pain, and suffering. But sometimes accident compensation matters can be highly complex and difficult to navigate, which is why is important to work with an accident attorney from the word go.

Supplemental Uber Insurance

The other good thing about Uber is that they also provide supplemental insurance to their drivers. This is specifically meant to help passengers who may get hurt in an Uber car crash. The accident policy, in the US, for instance, covers a liability of up to $1 million, which may be enough to compensate you for your losses, pay your medical bills, and other out of pocket expenses the persons involved in the accident might have incurred after the car crash. The ridesharing service also provides coverage of up to $50,000 per person and $100,000 per accident, along with $25,000 coverage for property damage caused by the accident. However, the caveat to this is that for the insurance to become available, the Uber driver has to have had the Uber app on during the ride. This makes it important that as a passenger, you always ensure that your driver has the Uber app on as soon as you board the vehicle.
 
After an Uber driver is involved in a car accident, the liability lies in the person at fault. They, the other driver, or their insurance company could be held liable. In a rideshare accident, some common types of compensation available include medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and loss of companionship, among others. Whether you’re the driver or the passenger in the accident and you’re injured, it is important to seek medical attention, talk with an accident attorney, file a police report, and get insurance information as soon as possible. This helps ensure that whoever is to blame for the accident is brought to justice and that you receive your compensation where due.
 

Lexus Performance Driving School, 360 MAGAZINE, Lexus, Toyota, WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca

What to Include in the Police Accident Report

Accidents can happen anywhere, anytime, to anyone, and without a warning or time to prepare. According to a report, more than 37,000 people lose their lives to road accidents each year in the US, around 2.35 million people are subject to injuries or disabilities due to accidents, and these accidents amount to $230.6 billion in costs (around $820 per person). No matter how many precautions you take while driving, you still might get into an accident with no fault of yours, as many times you just happen to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. While what you do before the accident might not have such a big impact on the situation, what you do after an accident is very important, and is under your control.

In an unfortunate instance of an accident, the first thing you need to do is keep your calm and make sure that you are alright and check to see if any injuries have been incurred by you or other people involved in the accident. If there are any injuries, you should immediately call for emergency services and inform the police.

It is very important to make a police accident report after an accident, even if it is a minor one. The Texas law requires the individual to report the accident to the police if the damages exceed $1,000, or there is an injury or death. If you do not report the accident despite the conditions mentioned earlier, you might face a fine of $5,000. Even if the police do not come to the scene due to whatever reason, you still might have to file an accident report with the Texas Department of Transportation.

The essential things that must be included in the police accident report are:

Witness accounts

Whether you think what they have to say is of any importance or not, the statements of any witnesses present on the scene must be included in the police accident report, as these statements might help you out in any future legal actions. The statements are usually taken by the police but in case no police are present, you can record these on your mobile phone.

Details

Complete details need to be included in the report including the place, time, date of the accident, the people involved in the accident, details of the vehicles involved in the accident, and how and why the accident took place. The details should be as rich as possible as you never know what information might be useful in the future if there are any lawsuits or insurance claims. The details of the conditions in which the accident took place also need to be mentioned in the report including the weather, road and lighting conditions at the time and place of the accident.

Injuries and damage

The report should include the injuries incurred by the people involved in the accident and the damage incurred by the cars involved in the accident.

360 MAGAZINE, Vaughn Lowery, medicine

How Can Medical Malpractice Affect You?

Unfortunately, sometimes in life accidents happen and mistakes are made. The medical industry is no different, and although the vast majority of times you go into hospital, you will receive top rate care, there are times when medical practitioners make mistakes. 

In 2013, over $3 billion was spent settling medical malpractice suits in the US. This is a staggering amount of money, but it reflects the huge impact medical negligence can have on a person’s life. 

So, what is medical malpractice, and how can it affect you?

What is Medical Malpractice?

Medical malpractice is when a healthcare provider fails to meet established healthcare standards. This can be through negligence, poor communication, or diagnostic errors, but all can lead to increased suffering for a patient. 

In the medical industry, small errors can have big consequences, and any mistakes can severely impact the quality of life of the patient. As a result, there can often be high levels of compensation for medical malpractice suits, leading to the figure of $3 billion being spent on medical malpractice suits in 2013. 

What Types of Medical Malpractice are There?

Medical malpractice can lead to a variety of different injuries and illnesses. If poor treatment led to you sustaining a new injury or illness, or for your illness or injury to become worse, then you may have suffered from medical malpractice. 
Some common malpractice scenarios are:

Inability to diagnose in a timely manner – this can happen in a wide variety of illnesses such as cancer, heart problems, and strokes, among other conditions. 

Errors during anaesthesia.

Surgical errors.

Receiving the wrong medicine.

Injuries sustained during labor.

These errors, and many others can have a big impact on your life, or the life of a loved one, and the law is there to make sure you don’t suffer any more than you have to. 

What Does a Malpractice Claim Cover?

Medical malpractice can impact your life in many different ways. Not only do you face medical costs, and potentially the cost of future care, but if you’re away from work for a period of time, then you will also lose income. 

You shouldn’t have to suffer these costs if you’ve been in an accident that wasn’t your fault, and therefore a medical malpractice claim can cover you for:

Expenses as part of your daily living, such as getting to appointments, equipment to help you with your debility. 

Lost earnings during the time you have been unable to work.

Cost of surgeries and medical procedures.

Adaptations to your home.

Cost of future care.

Future earnings you might lose because you are not able to work. 

Do I Need a Lawyer?

An experienced lawyer can help put your mind at ease that you have a professional looking after your case. Filing a successful medical malpractice case isn’t straight forward and your chances of being successful are much greater if you have a lawyer on your side. 
With an attorney looking after the legal side of things for you, you can concentrate on your recovery and getting better. 

Lexus ES, Vaughn Lowery, 360 MAGAZINE, NYC, rooftop

Important Financial Steps Before Starting Your Own Business

If you had a dollar for every time another business failed due to missteps in their business finances, you’d probably be able to fund your entire operation without worrying.

You don’t want to be one of those business owners with a company that slowly (or sometimes quickly) sinks because they lack a firm grip on their finances. And if you intertwine your business and personal finances, even more trouble can arise.

Here are some important financial steps you should consider and map out before starting your own business.

Before you plan your startup business make sure you have a very well set financial planning strategy. Accounting software such as Hosted QuickBooks Cloud can be useful for managing your finance audits and payrolls. Learn more about other useful business tools such as Office 365 and Office 365 migration guidelines with Apps4Rent.

Choose Your Business Entity Type

Choosing your business entity type sets the stage for all of your financial decisions moving forward. This is step number one, and it’s a big deal. You need to decide whether you want to form a Limited Liability Company (LLC), S Corporation (S Corp), C Corporation (C Corp), or Nonprofit.

This will determine the type of financial protection you may have, as well as taxation details and associated filing fees. Keep in mind that you can choose an initial structure and then reevaluate at a later time if the needs of your business change.

Decide How You Want to Manage Your Finances

As an entrepreneur, you may already be a wizard with finances and might want to manage your accounting on your own, which is totally your prerogative. But if you’re not a numbers wizard, then recognize that you should employ a financial expert or hire a financial consultant and/or accountant.

When you decide whether to manage it yourself or hire an expert, you will then decide on an accounting system that works for your business. After that, decide whether your business should use cash or accrual accounting.

Open Business Banking Accounts

You should open both a business checking account and a business savings account; having an entirely separate business banking system is important. You should also consider opening a business credit card. This will help you manage all of your business-related expenses, which you can use as deductions when filing for your taxes.

Don’t Forget to Pay Yourself

Last but not least, you need to establish guidelines on how you pay yourself as a small business owner. You are doing the hard work as the brain and heart of the organization, so you deserve a slice of the pie — and not a small one. You need to pay yourself enough so you’re not eating cereal every night for dinner, but not too much that your business checking account doesn’t have enough to cover that client coffee date. It’s a fine balance.

This article was originally published on the Incfile Blog. 

Lisa Crocco is a marketer for an international food manufacturer by day and a freelance writer/marketer for startups & small businesses by night. She’s She’s written for outlets like USAToday College, Career Contessa, Cloudpeeps, and Fairygodboss.