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Albany Law Blog

Car accident defense after DWI with injuries

Professional drivers are held to a much higher standard than those who work in other industries. Whether a driver works for a taxi company, bus line or limousine service, customers and employers rely on the individual's spotless driving records and careful attention behind the wheel. When misfortune strikes, the driver may seek car accident defense in the face of a lawsuit.

A recent accident in New York involved a 35-year-old off-duty limousine driver. At an unknown point on the Bronx River Parkway, the driver crossed onto the wrong side of the highway and was driving against traffic. His vehicle, registered to a local taxi and limousine service, struck another vehicle head on. The other vehicle contained a family of six, ages 15 to 50 years, who were traveling to New York to visit relatives.

Medical malpractice defense more difficult for cancer doctors

Cancer is one diagnosis most everyone fears. From the day one learns of the illness, it becomes a fight for life, including surgeries, medications and treatments that take their toll in an effort to heal. However, doctors in New York may now find it riskier to treat cancer patients following changes in the law that may increase the need for medical malpractice defense.

This is because state lawmakers just passed a bill changing the length of time during which cancer patients can sue a doctor if they feel the doctor misdiagnosed them. Prior to the recent amendment, patients had two and a half years from the date of the medical mistake. Now, patients may take the same amount of time, but the clock starts ticking from the moment the supposed mistake is discovered. Patients whose time expired in the past 10 months may get an additional six months to file.

What to do if you are feeling the bankruptcy blues

If you have recently gone through a Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you know that there is a whirlwind of emotions that comes with the process. You might feel a sense of relief that it is finally over, as well as hope for your financial future. However, you and other New Yorkers who have gone through financial struggles may be feeling mostly negative emotions.

It is not uncommon to feel shame, grief, sadness and anger both during and after the process of bankruptcy, states U.S. News & World Report. Chronic depression is overwhelmingly prevalent among those who have suffered for months or years with their financial troubles. The stress can also put a strain on your relationship, which might lead to frequent arguments over money or even divorce. Is it any surprise that you may be more depressed at this time than you usually feel?

Truck insurance groups want better safety devices on trucks

Highway safety is of primary concern to many New York truckers. Unfortunately, one of the deadliest types of accidents in which many tractor-trailers are involved is often out of their control. Nevertheless, truck insurance groups may soon be asking lawmakers to require truck manufacturers to take steps to minimize the severity of injuries in these accidents.

Under-ride crashes occur when smaller vehicles crash into the sides of tractor-trailers. The lower vehicles often slide under the high sides of the trailer, causing devastating injuries and death. Some data suggests that about half of fatalities in car-versus-truck crashes result from under-ride injuries. In fact, about 750 under-ride fatalities occurred in a single year.

Declaratory judgment actions may prevent needless lawsuits

When facing potential lawsuits in New York courts, one may hear unfamiliar terms and phrases. While it is helpful to have an attorney who can guide one through these circumstances, having a general understanding of such terminology may allow one to participate more fully in the process. One term that may be used when mounting an insurance defense is "declaratory judgment actions."

The benefit of the declaratory judgment is that it often prevents lawsuits from proceeding when there is little likelihood of success. In such a case, a judge is merely asked to determine whether the plaintiff's rights have been denied. No monetary awards or damages are decided. The court simply clarifies the obligations and rights of each party, giving the plaintiff an opportunity to decide whether it is worth it to proceed with a lawsuit.

Personal injury defense after fatal accident

Following a tragic accident in which a passenger dies, there are often many procedures a New York driver may undergo. These include medical, legal and, if the accident was the result of drunk driving, administrative. Each of these attempts strive to bring some positive or just resolution to the destruction the accident caused. Additionally, the driver may have to build a personal injury defense.

Recently, a 22-year-old man was indicted for his role in a fatal accident on the Manhattan Bridge. The man had left a holiday party with a 17-year-old friend, and the driver headed toward the city apparently in search of additional celebrations. Reaching speeds of 65 mph in a 35 zone, according to reports, the driver lost control of his vehicle while trying to avoid a red light. The car struck a fire hydrant and flipped, killing the passenger instantly.

Understanding laws that govern insurance company payouts

Understanding insurance law is not always easy, but consumers have an obligation to know what their policies contain and what they are required to carry. Additionally, each state has different ways of determining how an insurance company is required to pay damage losses. Without understanding these important elements, consumers often make crucial mistakes in filing claims.

New York, for example, is a no-fault state, and the law requires drivers to carry Personal Injury Protection insurance. In a no-fault state, there is no need to determine who caused an accident since each driver's own insurance covers his or her personal damages and medical costs. This often speeds up the process of filing and receiving a claim.

Insurance law bans non-driving discounts

In the past, consumers looking for a deal on car insurance could count on certain factors resulting in a discount on premiums. These factors were typically arrived at through studies correlating them to the likelihood of an accident. However, as insurance law changes, New York drivers may find themselves losing some of the discounts as lawmakers find them discriminatory.

A teacher, dentist or accountant is apparently a lower risk for the insurance industry, but it is not certain if that is because they have fewer accidents or because they use their own means to pay for accident damages. However, while insurance companies previously rewarded these professions with discounts, many states are banning the practice of lowering rates for non-driving factors. The reason is because such discounts often exclude drivers with less education and lower incomes.

How to bounce back from credit card debt after the holidays

The holidays are a time of year for fun and festivity, but it is also a time when Americans take on a lot of credit card debt when compared to other times of the year. The average American took on just over $1,000 of debt during the holidays in 2016, which was an increase from $986 on average in 2015. 

The first thing you need to do to start managing your credit card debt is to assess all your purchases. If you made all your holiday purchases on one card, then this will be relatively easy. However, if you spread your purchases on multiple cards, then you need to create a spreadsheet so you know which cards you need to pay off and how much interest each one carries. By doing this and following a few other key steps, you can get your finances back on track soon. 

Medical professionals face increase in birthing complications

It is not accident or illness that account for the largest percentage of trips to the hospital; it is childbirth. Each year, almost four million women visit U.S. hospitals to have their babies, and most of these births are uneventful. However, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and other health agencies are noticing that the number of women who suffer complications during and after childbirth is on the rise in New York and across the country. Medical professionals are in the crosshairs when these parents blame misdiagnoses and negligence as the causes of their complications.

According to CDC data, about 50,000 women a year suffer post-delivery complications, including infections, hemorrhages and organ failure. About 800 women die each year from illnesses apparently related to childbirth. Thousands others suffer life-altering consequences, such as hysterectomies, organ and tissue damage, heart disease and chronic pain. Some analysts believe that women are not given enough post-delivery care, and that signs of infection or other problems may be missed because the focus shifts to the baby's well-being.

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