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Lake Charles Personal Injury & Wrongful Death Law Blog

Help for victims of distracted drivers

Distracted driving accidents can be devastating for victims and their families, which is why they need to be aware of the legal protections available to them when harmed. A distracted driver may be held liable for the damages they inflict upon a car accident victim through a personal injury claim. When successful, a personal injury lawsuit can help victims of distracted driving-related accidents recover compensation for their physical, financial, and emotional damages.

Too many drivers are looking away from the roadway and not paying attention while driving. There are generally three categories of driver distraction including visual, manual, and cognitive. Visual distractions remove the driver's eyes from the roadways. Manual distraction remove the driver's hands from the steering wheel. Cognitive distractions remove the driver's attention and focus from the roadway.

What is a wrongful death claim and how can one help families?

A wrongful death claim for damages can come at a difficult time in the lives of surviving family members who have lost a loved one in a fatal accident. It can serve as a legal resource to help them recover compensation for some of the damages they have suffered, including financial and emotional damages.

Surviving family members who have had a loved one wrongfully killed in a car wreck or other type of accident should understand how wrongful death legal protections could help them. A wrongful death claim for damages is brought on behalf of the estate of the lost loved one for the benefit of surviving family members. Depending on where the wrongful death claim is brought, certain family members may have the right to bring the claim, but generally spouses and dependents can do so. A wrongful death claim is brought against the negligent party responsible for the accident.

Which Louisiana jobs are the most dangerous?

As in most states, the job market in Louisiana fluctuates. Perhaps, you're among the rare group of workers who have been with the same company for 20 years or more. More than likely, however, you might be part of the majority, which includes people who have worked two, three or more jobs in the past 10 years or so. Some jobs are obviously more dangerous than others are.

There is, of course, a certain amount of personal injury risk every time you report to work. However, if you happen to work in an industry that typically ranks on lists regarding most dangerous jobs in the state, you might be a bit more concerned about safety than those who work in less dangerous fields. No matter where you work, if you're in an on-the-job accident that results in injury, it's imperative that you understand how to navigate the workers' compensation claims process.

Who is covered by workers' compensation?

Most employees in Louisiana are covered by workers' compensation if they are injured during the course of their job duties. Coverage starts the day they start work.

However, there are certain categories of employees who are exempt from workers' compensation coverage. These include domestic employees, most real estate brokers and sellers, and unpaid officers and directors of nonprofit organizations. Certain kinds of employees are exempt because they are covered by other laws designed to protect workers. For example, dockworkers may be covered under the Longshoremen's and Harbor Workers' Compensation Act, maritime workers may be covered under the Jones Act, and railroad workers may be covered under the Federal Employer's Liability Act.

Ships' flags indicate what country's law applies

Anyone who has watched the ships sail in and out of Louisiana's port has noticed the many world flags that fly on these vessels. These flags have legal significance in admiralty and maritime law.

Because shipping takes vessels all over the world, admiralty law has elements of international law as well as domestic. Through various treaties and agreements over the years, shipping nations all over the world have slowly worked to standardize their admiralty laws. However, legal issues involving one vessel are, generally speaking, controlled by the country under whose flag the vessel sails. A U.S. ship sailing in the Mediterranean is subject to U.S. admiralty law, while a Chinese ship sailing in U.S. waters is subject to Chinese admiralty law.

It's not just alcohol that can make drivers unsafe

There is a lot of attention paid to the hazards of drunk driving, but it's important to remember that alcohol is not the only substance that can render a person too intoxicated to drive safely. Louisiana law takes this into consideration with its law against Driving While Intoxicated, or DWI.

In addition to alcohol, drivers can be intoxicated by illegal drugs, such as cannabis or opioids, or by legally acquired prescription medications. In some cases, drivers can be intoxicated from over-the-counter medications such as cough syrup or allergy pills.

Software evidence plays key role in medical malpractice case

Medical malpractice law allows injured patients or their families to hold medical care providers liable for the damages they cause when their care falls short of professional standards. But to do so, the plaintiff must show what the standard of care is, and how the care provider should have acted differently. Doing this requires some a very close look at the evidence.

In a recent medical malpractice lawsuit from another state, the result hinged on a somewhat unusual piece of evidence: the computer software used at the clinic in question.

What can I do if I was injured by a hit-and-run driver?

When we discuss motor vehicle accidents on this blog, we usually talk about personal injury lawsuits involving a negligent driver. The basic legal concept behind these cases holds that if a driver causes an accident through negligence, and someone else is hurt as a result, the injured party may hold the negligent driver liable for their damages. But what if you can't find the negligent driver? What if you were injured by a hit-and-run driver?

The first thing to note about hit-and-run accidents is that it, under Louisiana law, it is illegal for a driver to leave the scene of an accident in which someone was seriously injured or killed without at least providing their name, address and vehicle license number. These drivers must report the accident to the police. A person who leaves the scene of such an accident can be sentenced to up to 10 years in prison and fined up to $5,000. They can have their license suspended and face other penalties and charges as well.

1 worker killed, another injured while hanging Christmas lights

Although some lines of work are inherently more dangerous than others, accidents can happen to all kinds of workers, in all kinds of workplaces. Louisiana's workers' compensation system is designed to help injured workers and their families in many types of work and many types of workplaces.

In a recent tragic accident, one Louisiana worker was killed and another badly injured when they were electrocuted while hanging lights for the Christmas season. According to a news report, the two men involved were employees of the town of Springhill, Louisiana, and were operating a lift basket at the time of the accident. Police became aware of a problem when electric power failed at a nearby police station. A city employee then came running into the station to ask for help. One worker was declared dead at the scene. The other was sent to a hospital for treatment.

Study finds high rates of burnout among medical professionals

Generations of Louisiana parents have wished for their children to grow up to be doctors. Medicine is still a highly prestigious profession, and for many, a very well-paid one. However, according to a recent report, increasing numbers of doctors are unhappy with their work lives. They report feeling stressed out and burned out. Researchers worry that this situation is leading to increased risks to patients.

In a high-profile report, the National Academy of Medicine found about half of U.S. physicians and nurses showed significant symptoms of burnout, such as emotional exhaustion, cynicism and a low sense of satisfaction in their work. Among medical students and residents the rate is even higher: ranging from 45-60%.

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