How Business Litigation can quickly become personal

In modern business, litigation becomes an issue for the overwhelming majority of people. Whether the other party is an ex-employee or a supplier, you may have a longstanding relationship with them. You may try to keep your emotions out of the litigation, but that can be difficult when dealing with your livelihood. According to the litigation lawyers at Slater Pugh, enlisting the support of a qualified legal representative when facing these and other breaches of trust can give you the best chance at protecting your company.

One common type of business litigation is between a business and ex-employee. When an employee is trying to prove wrongful termination or discrimination, motive is everything. To establish motive, lawyers will review specific conversations and interactions that took place during the employee’s tenure. The nature of this reminiscing is frequently extremely emotional. Questions of context and meaning arise, and misunderstandings can be upsetting to all parties involved. A classic way of determining discrimination is by proving other employees engaged in the same behavior but were not fired. This situation brings more employees into the litigation and only serves to deepen the emotional toll.

Another common type of business litigation is between two business partners and involves intellectual property. Intellectual property is defined as “a work or invention that is the result of creativity, such as a manuscript or a design, to which one has rights and for which one may apply for a patent, copyright, trademark”. This may seem straightforward, but what if the partners took a collaborative approach. Suddenly you are disputing the individual credit and fighting for your ideas. These situations can quickly become emotional, especially if money and friends are involved. In these situations specifically it is essential to have a litigation lawyer taking care of the details.

Dockworkers are Engaged in one of the Most Dangerous Jobs in the United States

On November 4, 2016, just before the end of his shift, which ran from 6 pm to 3 am, Bert Tufele, a Samoan longshore worker at the Stevedore Services of America (SSA) drove his utility tractor (UTR) close to the vessel, from which he was moving cargo containers, that was docked at Pier A of the Marine Terminal in Long Beach. His UTR, however, accidentally clipped the bombcart of another UTR that was in front of him. Upon impact, Tufele was thrown out from his UTR; the vehicle’s tires run over him, causing in him fatal injuries.

There had been other longshore worker deaths on this Long Beach dock in the past, most being workers who performed duties in other job classifications. The death of Tufele, however, is believed to be the first death that involved a UTR driver and the accident not linked to a faulty equipment or to another individual. This is why UTR drivers, prior to the start of their shift, are required to inspect their vehicles; during operation, they should maintain safe speed and always wear a seatbelt. Most UTRs, however, have no speedometers and have mechanical defects, such as missing or malfunctioning seatbelt.

In its website, the law firm Ritter & Associates talks about the importance of dockworkers in the shipping industry. Their task of loading and unloading cargo ships promptly and efficiently necessitates two things: the need to be physically fit and the need to go through extensive training so they can learn to load and unload properly.

Their job, however, is also one of the most dangerous jobs in the United States and, like any labor-intensive job, they are at risk of work-related injury, especially when machinery malfunctions or when other people act negligently.

Filing a maritime lawsuit against the manufacturer of a defective product or against the party whose negligent actions contributed to the accident may be necessary for the injured to claim additional financial compensation that will help pay for his/her medical bills, lost wages, and other damages.

Types of Escalator Accidents Revealed

Escalators provide individuals with a quicker way to move up floors. But despite the convenience they offer, there has been a spate of escalator accidents reported over the years. Since it was patented in 1892, the design of escalators has not seen much change. As the website of Ali Mokaram reveals, escalators require proper inspections and repairs to ensure their safety. Its dangerous nature has caused people to be alarmed when riding them.

Around 12,500 to 15,000 escalator accidents happen in the United States on a yearly basis. The accidents may include clothing or body parts getting stuck. Due to the growing safety concern of escalators, may manufacturers have now added safety features to their escalators. Let us take a look at some of the common escalator accidents:

Falling Accidents

Falls associated with stopped handrails can be difficult to defend because components that power these rails require regular maintenance. Aside from that, there are many available devices that can help provide warning to the public of a stalled handrail.

Side of Step Entrapments

This happens when clothing or body parts gets stuck between the moving step and stationary adjacent skirt panel. Defending these accidents can also be equally challenging due to the problem of maintaining the allowable gap between moving stair and skirt panel.

Comb Plate Entrapments

This accident involves a body part getting entrapped between the moving stair and the stationary comb plate located at the egress point of all escalators. This is equally challenging to defend as well since the plaintiff would have to prove that the combs were set too high and does not penetrate the grooves in the steps or if the step is too slow.

Handrail Entrapments

This accident happens when clothes or body parts get stuck between the moving handrail and its guide or at the handrail brush on the newel.
Broken or Missing Steps

Accidents due to broken or missing steps usually result to serious injuries when both step yokes, the main support on each side of a step to which the rollers are attached give way.

Distribution Systems Applied Courts When Dividing Properties, Assets and Debts

There are times when the only remaining way to get out of a trouble-filled marriage is through divorce. Divorce, no doubt, is a painful process, especially if the process through which all issues related to it are settled in the courtroom (this refers to contested divorce, which is also known as traditional courtroom divorce), where spouses, through their respective attorneys, discredit one another, bring to the open each other’s weaknesses and wrongdoings, and recite before an audience made up of strangers, all their assets, properties and debts. The final decision regarding the issues that need to be settled, however, will not be made by them, but by a judge presiding over their case. The issues that may need settlement are child custody, child support, visitation rights, spousal support or alimony, and division of properties, assets and debts. The more issues there are that need to be settled, the longer the divorce case goes and, the longer the divorce case drags, the more expensive things become due to court fees, attorneys’ fees, and fees paid to experts, like accountants and property evaluators.

Besides child custody and alimony, another issue that is often hotly argued about in a divorce case is division of properties,assets and debts.

Dividing properties, assets and debts can be a source of too much stress for divorcing couples. But while some individuals think that everything can be divided, the law says otherwise, meaning, not everything may be up for division. This is because only marital assets and properties can be divided; thus, before a judge can decide “who gets what,” he or she will first need to identify which assets and properties are considered marital and which are not.

Personal or non-marital assets and properties include: all properties mentioned in a pre-marital or prenuptial agreement; inheritance or gift to a spouse at the time of marriage; profits earned by a spouse from properties which he or she already owned before the marriage; and, properties bought by a spouse using the money that he or she earned before marriage.

In dividing properties and assets, the courts may apply equitable distribution or community property. Community property distribution is based on equality. Under this system, all the properties and assets earned and acquired during marriage, even if only one of the spouses worked, will be distributed equally since the spouses are considered equal owners of. This is also applied to debts, thus, rendering both spouses equally liable for unpaid balances on all debts, such as car loan, home mortgage, credit cards, and so forth.

Equitable distribution, on the other hand, divides all marital properties and assets between spouses in a fair and reasonable manner. It is the court which determines what will constitute fair and reasonable distribution: it can be a 50/50 division or one spouse may be awarded a greater percentage of the marital properties and assets. To determine what is fair and reasonable, the court considers the following factors:

  • The age and health condition of each spouse
  • The earning potential and financial condition of each spouse
  • The properties and assets mentioned in a premarital or prenuptial agreement
  • The amount of the properties if liquidated
  • Future liabilities and financial needs of each spouse
  • The degree of contribution made by each spouse in the acquisition of all marital properties
  • The value of of each spouse’s personal property, like business, retirement plans, stocks, bonds, 401(k) plans, financial incentives
  • Amount of child support paid and alimony obligations.

It is legally allowed for divorcing couples to negotiate a property settlement by themselves; however, as mentioned in the website of The Maynard Law Firm, PLLC, failure to reach an agreement will require a court to make the decisions for them. Wisconsin, Washington, Texas, New Mexico, Nevada, Louisiana, Idaho, California and Arizona are the states where the community property distribution system is observed; all other states observe the equitable distribution system. In whatever state a couple may be living in, when it comes to division of property, assets and debts, it is always advisable to settle or go to court assisted by a skilled attorney.

Understanding No-fault Car Liability Insurance

On account of the more than five million vehicle accidents that occur in the United States every year, all states, with the exception only of New Hampshire, has mandated that all drivers carry insurance liability coverage. This liability coverage is intended to protect health-related cost for bodily harm or repair of damage to home (such as another car of a fixture on the highway) where the insured motorist is held to be the trigger; it can also be required to ensure safety additional people as well as their properties.

With DWI, dangerous driving and over-speeding as among the very best causes of car accidents on U.S. roadways and routes, ensuring the protection of conceivable harmless accident victims, whose security on the road is undermined, is merely just and proper.

It’s also true, nevertheless, that many times even the driver that is careless or negligent endures serious injuries and his/her automobile, incurring wreck that is leading. Because of this, the no-fault auto liability insurance was released, a type of protection where the wounded driver’s insurance provider will cover all his/her injury-related losses, also if the injury was absolutely the problem of a motorist that is stated.

Insured under the no-fault insurance are lost wages because of the cost of health treatment, missed business days and expense of harm to the house; payment to these is called PIP or personal injury protection. This will need to be done by way of a court case, although the casualty has the possibility to still pursue further payment to home for damages.

One other amazing factor about no-problem auto liability insurance is its rates prices lower compared to at-fault insurance rates because there’s really no longer any need for the court proceeding, which is merely meant to ascertain who the responsible party is in the injury.
Drivers with numerous traffic infractions in just one year, who’ve been charged with DUI/DUI or who don’t have any insurance liability coverage (in states where this really is needed), apart from getting their state-mandated insurance, will also need to get and fill out an SR-22, a document that demonstrates the control of an automobile liability insurance.

Based on an article posted on the website of Madison, Wisconsin car accident attorneys, an SR-22 is really a type submitted by underwriters to some state’s Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV) office, for the purpose of having the suspension to the driver license lifted; it is just through the raising of the suspension can the motorist love his/her driving privileges again.

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