This is a two part blog series regarding Taxes and Divorce. This first blog will address several tax related issues to keep in mind while your divorce is pending.
There isn't always a correlation in an automobile accident, between the severity of the crash and the extent of the injuries received. Some minor collisions bring about major damage and sometimes a person walks away unscathed in a terrible accident. Some of the factors in the severity of the injuries include wearing a seat belt, speed, was the driver sitting face forward, was the car hit from the side, front or behind and did the car have airbags. The most important thing, however, is to seek immediate medical attention. Sometimes, due to trauma and shock, injuries do not start to manifest themselves until after some time has passed and the imminent danger is no longer a threat. You also want to hire an Ohio attorney to negotiate with the insurance adjuster or a claim in court. Ohio is a comparative fault state and you cannot recover if you were more than 50% at fault in the accident.
Negligence and Injury
Whether it be an automobile accident, slip and fall claim, medical malpractice, product or premise liability or a myriad of other instances that have resulted in an injury, the common thread for placing liability is negligence. It is the concept of one person or entity not causing harm to another. To prove negligence, the injured party must show the other person had a "duty of care" towards him, breached that duty of care, the breach caused the injuries, and you were harmed as the result of their actions. The basic principle of negligence is to act in a desirable and prudent manner so as not to bring harm to others and a failure to act in the way a responsible person would in a like circumstance.
Wrongful Death Actions in Kentucky
In Kentucky, a Wrongful Death action is governed by the KRS 411.130. This, in effect, states that if the death of a person is the result of an injury inflicted by the wrongful act or negligence of another, damages may be recovered from that person, or their agent or servant. Punitive damages may also be recovered if the act was wilful or the negligence was gross. The lawsuit must be brought by the personal representative of the deceased. A wrongful death claim is a personal injury claim in which the injured party is no longer able to file a claim for compensation but is, instead, represented by family members.
Medical Evidence and Your Personal Injury Case
If you have been injured in Kentucky by an accident due to the negligence of another person or entity, you are entitled to compensation and should file a personal injury case. A certified personal injury lawyer can help you get compensation for your medical bills and lost wages along with pain and suffering. Your medical records, along with your willingness to follow your doctor's orders on getting well, go a long way toward winning your case and convincing a jury of the severity of your injuries. The records show your course of treatment, the type of injury, and the over-all prognosis as to the length of time you may still need to be fully recovered. If you do not have complete medical records to present in your case, you generally don't have a case. Personal injury cases can be the result of an automobile accident, slip and fall, medical malpractice, premise liability or because of a defective product to name a few. Kentucky is a Pure Comparative Law State which means your damages would be in direct proportion to your percentage of blame in the incident.
Liability and "Pregnancy Brain"
What is Pregnancy Brain
Studies show that in the event of an automobile accident, men have always been and continue to be the leading culprits in distracted or dangerous driving habits, however, a recent study shows that "pregnancy brain", a phenomenon associated with forgetfulness and mental distraction affect many areas of behavior, including driving ability in women. From a legal standpoint, can a woman be held responsible for an automobile accident by claiming "pregnancy brain?" In most cases, traffic accidents are negligence claims and the same rules would apply. Negligence would be the failure to act reasonably and react as a reasonable person would. The case would probably be handled the same as any other one that is based on the driver's mental condition. If a pregnant woman is having a problem with "pregnancy brain," is it reasonable for her to get behind the wheel? In this case, if an accident occurs, she could be determined negligent and thus be liable for damages. On the other hand, if she is unaware that she suffers from "pregnancy brain," and would be danger to herself or others because of it, she couldn't be held liable. As in all negligence cases, you should contact an attorney in your state that knows the law regarding these claims. The law would be different, let's say, in Kentucky versus Ohio and would depend on the statutes in their state.
The Preservation of Evidence After a car Accident
After a car accident there are many things going on and general chaos. You are in a state of shock and may have suffered injuries as a result of the accident, you are dealing with the other people involved, police reports, paramedics, bystanders that may have witnessed the collision and the damages to your vehicle. No wonder you feel like you're going crazy! The last thing on your mind is "preserving evidence," but this is the time you must do just that. Without evidence, your Ohio lawyer cannot file a claim for you. Ohio follows the "fault" or "tort" system which makes the person at fault for the accident liable for the damages, and you must present viable evidence of their fault. Your case needs a strong foundation, and that foundation is any evidence you can preserve and present in court. You need to establish fault and prove the extent of the damages suffered by you or your loved ones.
Suffering a physical or emotional injury by accident or mistake is usually grounds for a personal injury claim in Cincinnati. They occur unexpectedly and leave a person with lost wages, large bills and a disrupted living situation. The other party's insurance company will be quick to offer you a settlement if their client is found to be totally at fault, and a lesser amount if you share blame in your injury. This amount is going to be far less than if you hire a reputable attorney to represent you!
Ohio became the 35th state in 1980 to enact a comparative negligence law. Negligence, in the case of this law, is defined as the failure to exercise the good judgment expected of a reasonable and prudent person and it results in damage or injury to another. The amount of damages that can be recovered is in direct relation to the percentage of the action that was their own fault. The law in Ohio states that if the injured party is more than 50% at fault, there is no recovery. Prior to 1980, Ohio law was based on contributory negligence and if the injured person was found to be at fault in anyway, no matter how minor, no recovery could be affected.
If you have been injured in Kentucky, you need to know what laws apply to your claim or lawsuit, and what actions constitute a personal injury. Some of the potential scenarios are medical malpractice, dog bite, slip and fall, auto accidents, wrongful death, product liability and premises liability. The action has to be the result of negligence, breach of warranty, or reckless and intentional misconduct by another person or entity. It is a breach of duty to exercise reasonable care and results in injury and damages. If your claim falls under this criteria, you have a case for a personal injury claim and need to consult a reputable attorney who is familiar to cases of this nature and has dealt with your particular injury successfully in the State of Kentucky.
If you have been injured in a slip and fall accident, there are certain elements that have to be in place to determine whether you need to hire a Cincinnati attorney to represent you. These cases always entail some hazardous condition that caused the accident, and your attorney must act to file your claim within two years for you to be eligible to seek damages. Ohio relies on negligence law to determine the outcome of your claim. You must show that the opposing party had a responsibility to not cause you injury, and neglected this duty which in turn caused your injury; and prove the extent of the damages. This might include lost wages, medical expenses, pain and suffering. Under the comparative negligence aspect of the law, if your carelessness contributed more to the injury than the opposing party, you are not entitled to compensation, or the amount you can recover will be a percentage of the degree of your culpability. Having a knowledgeable, competent Cincinnati attorney to represent you will ensure you reasonable compensation.
When thinking of recoverable damages in a lawsuit, it normally applies to personal injury, medical bills, lost wages and economic damages. In the past, the law has generally not considered compensation for emotional distress, but is now gaining an increasing acceptance. While you may recover damages resulting from personal injury or harm, some courts are now allowing compensation for emotional harm as well. Emotional distress is suffering caused by some extreme circumstance, and can be caused accidentally or intentionally. It is usually easier to win when accompanied by physical harm that generates the emotional distress, but lawsuits under these circumstances generally encompass intentional infliction of emotional distress when presenting their case.
One of the largest industries in the world is the insurance industry, serving millions of people around the world from all walks of life. It is a wide and competitive market ranging from car insurance to life insurance and all the markets in between. Public perception is often their enemy as consumers complain about claims not being paid or ignored. With the advent of the internet and particularly of social media the customer of a particular agency can vent their pent-up emotions online and, instead of talking to their insurance agent as they did in the past, they can post their aggravations and thus hurt the reputation of the company. That also works in reverse if they have had a good outcome in a particular situation and draw new clients in for the agency. While online presence can cause some issues, it also presents a plethora of information for the insurance companies and presents the opportunity of creating a strong public image and allows direct dealings with the public.
A Loss of Consortium claim is filed in a personal injury or wrongful death situation by the affected family member(s) for the loss of a spouse, partner (in most states), child or parent. The Loss of Consortium claim is to compensate the spouse or family member of the person who was injured or killed as the result of a negligent or criminal act by the defendant. The key element in the case is that the wrongful act has had a debilitating effect on the person filing the claim such as loss of love, companionship, affection or sexual relations. A claim of this nature is a type of harm which falls under the category of General damages meaning they are losses of which money is a rough substitute. Since the monetary award is difficult to assess, it is usually left to the judge or jury to specify the amount.
While Loss of Consortiums are generally believed to refer to lack of or diminished sexual activity between spouses, it actually carries a much broader definition when thinking of filing a claim. It also pertains to the relationship between parents and a child, siblings and the loss or diminished capacity of a parent. The claim can stem from severe disability, loss of companionship, loss of affection, severe strain on a relationship or wrongful death. The claim is filed as part of a personal injury or death caused by negligence, medical malpractice or the intentional act of another and is intended to compensate the party that is not injured for non-economic losses such as loss of services, loss of support or loss of marital relations. These are losses that do not come with a bill or invoice but impact your everyday routine; household chores, lack of companionship or lack of marital relations.
When a car accident occurs, caused by the negligence of another, you are entitled to just compensation. The accident may have impacted your well-being and ability to work or in some cases the death of a loved one. Compensation for your physical injuries or property damage comes from the "at fault" driver's insurance company. If you are capable of functioning after an accident, there are several key things for you to do. Even in the midst of chaos, document the accident, with anyone needing medical attention the first priority. Talk to witnesses and get contact numbers for them. Call the police if you are injured or your car is damaged-don't skip this step trying to be a nice guy. A police report goes a long way towards documenting your claim in a court of law. Take pictures; if you don't have a phone or camera, ask witnesses if they would take pictures for you-sometimes a picture is worth a thousand words!
Lawyers are advocates for people and organizations, knowing in depth laws and regulations that they have spent years learning and practicing in order to serve you best. Divorce, personal injury, DUI, immigration, arbitration and civil rights are just some of the problems that they tackle. If you have a problem, your lawyer can advise you as to whether it is a matter for the courts, and if so, will accompany you and speak for you. They negotiate with the opposing party on your behalf to protect your best interest and get you a settlement if it applies to your case.
A lawyer, according to the Model Rules of Professional Conduct, as a member of the legal profession is a representative of clients, an officer of the legal system and a public citizen having special responsibility for the quality of justice. It does not differentiate on the type of law that is practiced or prioritize the roles which brings the conclusion that all lawyers must act as an officer of the court, is a participant of a system that puts justice as a core value and will respect the need for truth and truth seeking.
Your person, property, rights or reputation are all things that can be wronged or damaged and thus become liable for a Personal Injury claim. But to be a viable claim they must have occurred because of a negligent or unreasonably safe act by another. Examples include your employer in a workplace accident, your landlord in a slip and fall, your doctor in a medical procedure that left you worse off than before, a manufacturer that produced a faulty product that injures you or a drunk, reckless or negligent driver that causes an automobile accident. There are many more incidents that would apply, of course, but one thing they all have in common is that different laws apply to each one and different things must be done in each case to make it apply to a Personal Injury claim. As laymen, we are not equipped to make a sensible and logical decision as to whether we have a valid claim in a Cincinnati court of law. This is best discussed with a licensed, credible attorney who is well versed in the particular type of injury claim we are pursuing.
When you are involved in a Personal Injury case in Kentucky, you want to get the maximum amount you feel you are entitled too. You need to factor in a lot of expenses such as medical bills; present and future, loss of wages, and hiring household help. Depending on what type of injury you incurred, such as an auto accident, you have car repairs or possibly replacement. In a medical malpractice claim you could be paralyzed, housebound or any number of ailments that have to be dealt with, possibly on a long-term or lifetime basis. You will need the help of a reputable Kentucky attorney who specializes in your particular type of personal injury to help you determine what you need and what amount you can ask for. Getting more than one opinion is always the smart thing to do. No lawyer should be able to give you an exact amount, but should have an estimate from previous like cases as to what to expect. They also should tell you what their fee is, what it will cost to settle before trial and the fee for if it goes to trial. In other words, a general idea of what they are going to ask for and what it means to you after the incurred costs as far as the money in your bank account.