February 2009 Archives

February 28, 2009

Mississippi Investors Defrauded Out Of Hard-Earned Money

 

Stanford Financial Group and its owners have been charged with running a huge Ponzi scheme. Millions of dollars are still hidden by the company. The main guy, Allen Stanford, borrowed $ 1,600,000,000 of the company's assets, but $6,000,000,000 is still missing. The Securities and Exchange Commision accused them of misappropriating billions of dollars of investor's money and then lying about financial statements to cover up their actions. The SEC also alleged that Stanford lied about its bank's certificate of deposits promising unbelievable rates of return. This is the second high-profile Ponzi scheme which is similiar to the Madoff scheme which involved over $50 billion.

Investors in Mississippi have over $391,000,000 under Stanford's control, but their accounts have been frozen.

If a company's executives intentionally hide profits, losses, debts, or other financial transactions, shareholder fraud occurs. Shareholders do not buy stock in companies with suspicious activity. The executives may try to cover up shady deals in order to get or keep investors. They may offer interest rates that are double or triple the going rate so that shareholders think they are getting a great deal when in actuality, they are just being mislead. One of the most recent examples of shareholder fraud is the case of the financial giant Enron, which defrauded investors out of billions of dollars. Many have lost everything, including their life savings or retirements. If you are a victim of shareholder fraud, you have a right to file suit against the company that deceived you. Please call us today if you have been victimized by shareholder fraud.

 When a brokerage firm has cash and securities that are missing from customer accounts, a receiver is usually appointed to liquidate the firm and protect its customers.  Sometimes SIPC deals directly with customers.  Stocks, bonds, cash and other securities at a troubled brokerage firm are protected by SIPC. If sufficient funds are not available, the reserve funds of SIPC are used up to a ceiling of $500,000 per customer, including a maximum of $100,000 for cash claims. Additional funds may be available to satisfy the remainder of customer claims after the cost of liquidating the brokerage firm is taken into account. The financial worth of a customer's account is calculated as of the "filing date." Stocks and other securities owned by a customer are returned. 

The Law Offices of Paul Snow has experience in handling investor fraud claims. The SIPC often objects to claims, and the claims process is handled in court. Therefore, it is important that you hire an attorney to file your SIPC claims. Paul Snow works on a contingency fee basis which means that no fees are paid unless there is a recovery for you. Call Paul Snow, a MS attorney 1-800-640-4478 for your free consultation today. 

american flag.jpgFor filing a claim against Madoff go to www.madofftrustee.com, deadline is March 4,2009, for customer claims and July 2,2009 for all other claims.  



 

Continue reading "Mississippi Investors Defrauded Out Of Hard-Earned Money" »

February 27, 2009

Drunk Driver Given 15 Years For Accident In Jackson,MS

 

Courtney Savoie was sentenced to serve 15 years for killing Lyndon Bowlin from Missouri in a head-on collision in Jackson, MS. She was driving the wrong way against traffic without her lights on when the car crash occured. Her blood alcohol content was .25% which is three times the legal limit.

WHO CAN MAKE A CLAIM AGAINST WHOM AND WHY? The family of the deceased has a claim against the drunk driver and agaisnt the alcohol provider for selling alcohol to a visibly intoxicated driver. Someone who registers a .25% BAC is just about falling down drunk.

A bartender should know not to serve alcohol to someone who is that drunk. The alcohol industry has a slogan that says "Drink Responsibly", I have a slogan that says "Serve Responsibly". Who is the trained expert here? the bartender who has training and experience and has not been drinking or the customer whose judgment has been impaired by the alcohol? The bartenders are trained not to serve alcohol to customers who are drunk. When they do, the bar is liable for contributing to the accident just as much,if not more than the driver of the car. Remember, the accident would not have happened, but for the alcohol. van.jpg

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February 26, 2009

TEENAGER PARALYZED FROM TOYOTA ROLLOVER ACCIDENT NEAR LAUREL,MS

 

Will Greaves sustained a spinal cord injury in a one vehicle rollover accident on 12-31-08 on Hwy. 84 near Laurel, MS. The New Year's Eve car wreck left him paralyzed from the waist down. Will has been receiving treatment in Jackson, MS hospitals since the accident.Will was driving a Toyota 4 Runner when it rolled over and flipped several times.

In May, 2005, Toyota recalled about 880,000 sport utility vehicles (SUVs) and pickup trucks worldwide because of a defect that could affect steering. In the United States, 774,856 Toyota SUVs and pickup trucks have been recalled, including the 2001-2004 model years of the Tacoma, and the 2001-2002 versions of the 4Runner.

Understanding the risks involved in driving a sport utility vehicle may help prevent unnecessary SUV rollover accidents:

· Center of Gravity
A high center of gravity is one of the most important factors in determining a potential SUV rollover. Since SUVs have a higher center of gravity than other vehicles on the road it makes them more likely to rollover. A corrective action puts an SUV in a rollover position.
· Added Weight
Added weight does not add stability.On the other hand, more weight increases the chances of a rollover. 
· Roll Protections
An SUV without roll protection is what makes an SUV rollover accident so serious.Because roll bars were not installed on the SUV's, when a rollover occurs, there is no protection for the occupants. The roof usually collapses and crushes the driver and any passenger. The removal of the roll bars combined with the high clearance and high center of gravity make rollover accidents that much more dangerous.

SUV WARNING LABEL

As with other vehicles of this type, if you make sharp turns or abrupt maneuvers, the vehicle may roll over or may go out of control and crash. You should read driving guidelines and instructions in the Owner's Manual, and wear your seat belt at all times.

-Manufacturers are required to place this warning label in each sport utility by the driver.

SUV Stability Formula 

The addition of passengers, cargo and a full tank of gas all occurs above the center of gravity , increasing the chance of a rollover accident. This extra weight would definitely lower the ratio to unsafe levels if an accident were to occur at normal highway speeds.

SUV's have the highest rate of deaths occurring in rollovers. Vehicles such as the Ford Explorer, Toyota 4 Runner, Isuzu Rodeo, and Honda Passport have been involved in SUV rollovers that have ended up in serious injuries and death. SUV rollovers are almost three times more likely to occur than the average passenger car, and government tests indicate the most stable SUV is still more unstable than the most unstable car. turned over suv.jpg


 

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February 24, 2009

Brandon,MS Girl Paralyzed By Drunk Driver

 

A wreck between a car and a Ford F-350 pickup truck caused a 4 yr. old Brandon ,MS girl to become paralyzed. The driver of the truck, Tonya Gann, crossed over the centerline hitting the car head-on resulting in Graceyn Thrailkill's spinal cord injury from the waist down. The negligent driver was charged with DUI in the accident. Mrs. Thrailkill was also injured in the accident and had to use a wheelchair for a long time after the accident.

pickup truck.jpgWho has a claim against whom and why? The mom and daughter have a claim against the drunk driver for crossing over the centerline and hitting them head-on. They also have a claim against the bar or package liquor store or grocery store if alcohol were sold to the drunk driver at a time when the driver was visibly intoxicated. They also have a claim against their own insurance company if the drunk driver did not have enough car insurance to cover all of the damages. Mr. Thrailkill has a claim for loss of consortium because of the injuries to his wife.

There may be other avenues of recovery if more facts are known, for example, if someone else owned the truck and let the drunk driver drive the truck knowing that she was drunk, then the owner could be liable for negligent entrustment. Both the owner and driver's car insurance policy should apply to the accident even if the driver was not drunk. Because of the severity of the injuries and the lifetime medical care and costs that is going to be required, one should look very hard at all areas of recovery. A MS Accident Lawyer should be consulted to review this case in detail.

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February 23, 2009

DEFECTIVE PRODUCT: BABY CRIBS RECALLED

 

Stork Craft ahs recalled over 500,000 of baby cribs because of a defect in the mattress support brackets could break which may result in a suffocation. The cribs were sold at Kmart, Wal-Mart, J.C. Penney and other retail stores across the country. Also, sales were made online from Costco,Babiesrus, and Amazon.The relevent times of the sales were from may 2000 until jan 2009. For details go to storckcraft.com or cpsc.gov.

Who can make a claim agisnst whom and why? If someone's infant died or was injured as a result of a defective product,then the infant's family has a claim against the manufacturer of the product. In this case the claim would be against Stork Craft for making a defective bracket which allowed the mattress to separate from the bed frame which could cause suffocation. Baby cribs should be made so that an infant cannot get trapped inbetween the mattress and the frame otherwise it is an unsafe product. A MS Accident Lawyer should be consulted to discuss this matter. To see a list of unsafe and/or recalled products you can go to the Consumer Product Safety Commission web site and see a detailed list. www.cpsc.gov.

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February 22, 2009

LUCEDALE,MISSISSIPPI CAR CRASH KILLS BILOXI MAN

 

Three people were killed in a car/truck accident which happened on Hwy. 57 in George County,MS.  Robert Myrick of Lucedale, the driver of the work truck, and a passenger were killed in the car wreck. Two other passengers received personal injuries and were taken to the local hospital.  Myrick's truck collided with a Hummer SUV driven by Terrance Moore of Biloxi,MS who died at the scene.

Who has a claim against whom and why? If the truck came over into the SUV's lane of travel and caused the accident, then the driver of the SUV has a claim against the driver of the truck. Since this was a County truck, then the County will also be liable for their driver's actions. The passengers in the truck would also have a claim against their driver and the County for their driver's actions in causing the wreck. To take it one step further, suppose the County only had $25,000 of car insurance; could the driver of the SUV collect more than $25,000? The answer is yes, if he had underinsured motorist coverage which is greater than the County's insurance coverage. For example, if the SUV had $100,000 of UM coverage,then his family could collect the $25,000 from the County's insurance and $75,000 from his own UM coverage.($100,000-$25,000=$75,000). The family of the SUV driver could also make a claim against their own insurance company for funeral benefits under the medical pay provisions of the policy.

What if the tire blew out on the truck which contributed to the accident? Then anyone injured or killed would have a claim against the tire mfg. for a defective product under the product liability law of MS.

Continue reading "LUCEDALE,MISSISSIPPI CAR CRASH KILLS BILOXI MAN " »

February 21, 2009

Rankin County Woman Killed In Car Wreck

 

A 63 year old Pelahatchie, MS woman was killed in a car crash and others received personal injuries in accident that happened on Hwy. 43 in Rankin County, MS. The accident was caused by the driver of a car pulling out in front of the pickup truck who had the right-of-way.

Thumbnail image for pickup truck.jpgA vehicle who is traveling on a highway has the right-of-way over a vehicle who is entering the highway from a side street according to MS law.

Apparently, the driver who was pulling out onto the highway was not paying attention or failed to see what he should have seen,i.e., a pickup truck that was so close as to constitute an immediate hazard.

 

Who can make a claim in this accident and why? The passenger in the pickup truck can make a claim against the other driver for pulling out in front of the pickup truck;also, if the driver of the pickup truck were speeding, or not paying attention, then a claim can also be made against the driver of the pickup truck;the driver of the pickup truck can make a claim against the driver of the other car;the passengers in the other car can make a claim against their driver and against the driver of the pickup truck if he were speeding or not paying attention. There also may be a claim for underinsured motorist benefits if there were not enough insurance coverage to pay for all of the damages of the injured or killed victims.

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February 20, 2009

Mississippi Traffic Cameras: Good Or Bad

 

Jackson and Tupelo already have traffic cameras in place; Columbus, Natchez and Southaven are in the process of starting to have cameras installed in their cities in MS. The cameras cannot be put on state owned highways without the permission of MDOT. MDOT denied permission because of liability,legal and security reasons.

Car wrecks in Jackson,MS have greatly decreased since the installation of the cameras at eight different intersections. More than half of the money goes out of state to the company that owns the cameras.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, states that 106,000 crashes, 89,000 injuries, and 1,036 deaths nationally were attributed to running red lights in 2000.

This author has received one of these tickets. I never run red lights. I do make airplane stops sometimes. I looked real close at the closeup picture of my license plate and guess what, you can see that my brake lights are in fact on. I guess my stop was not good enough for the camera. What I found amusing was the video of the camera. You can download a short clip and watch it after you download the software. It appeared to me that the video of the scene was a lot faster than the actual stop at the intersection. I wonder how and why that happened.

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February 19, 2009

Southaven,MS Accident Kills Two Teenage Brothers And Injures Mother

 

In Hernando,MS a Horn Lake man was convicted of DUI causing permanent injury and two counts of manslaughter after he caused an accident in Southaven,MS. A bench trial was held in DeSoto County, MS.

The defendant faces up to 60 years in jail for the 2007 car wreck.

A MS Injury Lawyer should be consulted to ascertain what avenues of recovery are available to the family of the victims. No amount of money will bring back the brothers,but the responsible parties should not be allowed to get away with this without paying money damages.

Sometimes, a bar or package liquor store or grocery store is also liable to pay damages for contributing to an accident. This is called liquor liability in the legal community. Whoever is responsible for causing or contributing to an accident may have to pay money damages for their part in the accident. If any amount of alcohol is sold to a minor which contributed to an accident, then the alcohol seller may be liable along with the minor for causing the wreck.If the driver is an adult, then the proof has to show that the adult driver was visibly intoxicated and the alcohol provider sold one additional drink to the adult driver in order to prove a case.

Not all lawyers who claim to be experts in the field of accident/injury law realize that there may be a claim against the alcohol seller. If alcohol was involved in your accident, ask your attorney if there is someone else that ya'll can sue to recover damages. We work with other law firms in making claims against businesses who sell alcohol to a driver when they should not. We also teach other law firms how to handle these type of cases at legal seminars where we are speakers.

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February 18, 2009

Vicksburg,MS Woman Killed In Head-On Accident

 

A Texas couple were sent to the hospital and a Vicksburg resident was killed in an accident on I-20 Friday night near the Bovina exit. The couple were taken to the local hospital with injuries as a result of the accident which was caused when the driver of the other car crossed over the median.

It is not know why the woman driver lost control of her vehicle and hit the other car head-on.

Its always wise to keep a look out for other people driving on the highways. You never know what is going to happen. You must keep a constant lookout for anything and everything to happen. Just when you take your eyes off of the road for a few seconds and BAM you are in a wreck.

I remember one time I was riding as a passenger in a car on Hwy. 49 coming home to Jackson, MS when I noticed a truck coming towards us in our lane of travel. There were two lanes going North and two lanes going South. This truck was going against traffic coming right at us at a high rate of speed. I assumed that my driver would see the truck and pull over into our right lane to avoid a head-on collision. Much to my surprise, my driver was like in a trance and was day-dreaming and not paying attention. When I realized that she didnt see the truck and was not going to move over, I grabbed the steering wheel at the last second and saved our lives. My Guardian Angel must have been in the car with me that day because I just happened to be paying attention at that particular time and location.

A MS Personal Injury Attorney may help you if you have any questions about your accident case. van.jpg

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February 17, 2009

FIVE YEAR OLD MS BOY DIES IN CAR WRECK

 

An 5-year-old boy, from Miss., was one of three passengers in a car that left the roadway and hit a culvert in Louisiana.

Murphy Babin was driving a  Mitsubishi  southbound on Hwy. 315 when he turned the vehicle across the center line and exited the northbound travel lane,then went into a ditch, where his vehicle struck a culvert.

Front seat passenger, Tiffany Champange, the mother of the deceased child, received severe injuries; and rear passenger, an 11-year-old girl, also of Ruth, received severe injures and was taken to Chabert Medical Center.

The boy, also seated in the rear of the car, was pronounced dead on the scene. Babin is suspected of using alcohol and blood analysis results are pending from the the Louisiana State Police Crime Lab in Baton Rouge.

Don't drink and drive! How many times have you heard that phrase.Alcohol probably played some part in contributing to this accident and the death of the 5 yr. old boy.What if Babin does not have any car insurance? How can the family of the dead boy make a claim? The answer is UNINSURED MOTORIST COVERAGE. Each policy of car insurance in MS requires that you have uninsured motorist coverage for cases like this one where the driver who caused the accident may not have any car insurance.

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February 16, 2009

GREENWOOD,MS WOMAN AWARDED $3M IN POOL LAWSUIT

 

Demetrica Quenta Scott was awarded $3,000,000 in a trial in Hot Springs, Ark. in a lawsuit over permanent injuries that she received in a near-drowning accident in the hotel swimming pool.The allegations of the complaint were that the hotel was negligent for improperly maintaining its pool. Demetrica dove in and couldn't find her way to the surface because the pool water was too cloudy.

Several people tried to rescue her but were unsuccessful because the water was so murky.She was underwater for over 5-6 minutes and it took the paramedics about 15 minutes to get a vital sign.

The victim suffered severe brain damage via lack of oxygen and now has to be taken care of in a nursing home and cannot communicate with her family.

Brain injuries are the most serious kind of injury because it cost so much to take care of the patient in the future. It is not unusual for the future medical bills and care to run more than $10,000,000.  The last brain injury case that my law firm handled settled for payments adding up to over $16,500,000 guaranteed. The case involved a truck accident where the victim ran into the back of a laundry truck which was on the shoulder of the road.

Not every attorney has the skill,knowledge and experience to obtain the full amount of damages for the brain injured victim. An attorney who specializes in brain injury accidents is required. The MS Accident Lawyer must have a track record of obtaining multi-million settlements. 

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February 15, 2009

MDWFP offers free boating safety class

 

Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks is offering a free boater safety course this spring.



sunken sailboat.jpgThe Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks will offer boater safety courses this spring, with specific dates to be announced. Pre-registration is required, and more information is available by contacting the MDWFP Boater Education Division at 1-800-354-5033.



"Even if you're just going to be riding in a boat with someone these are good classes to have, "Believe me when I say it could save your life."
 The site also has links to qualifying boater safety courses that can be taken online anytime.

Boating accidents can be caused by a number of different reasons,inattention,speed too fast for conditions,untrained driver,driver distraction, driver drinking,and boat defects.

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February 14, 2009

Jackson, MS Accident Kills Two Doctors In Pickup Truck

 

A unnecessary head-on collision between a Mercedes and a pickup truck caused the truck to burst into flames burning the occupants beyond recognition. An eyewitness saw the driver of the Mercedes cross over the centerline and hit the truck head on. He also said that the Mercedes was speeding.

The heat from the explosion was so hot that it melted the tires on the truck. The impact was so severe that it knocked one of the tires way down the street. Remember that two vehicles going 60 mph that hit head-on is like someone going 120 mph and hitting a tree. One person stated that "horrific" was too light of a word to describe this accident. Local residents heard loud explosions.

Some witnesses reported that the Mercedes was speeding and a Jackson Police cruiser had been following her with its blue lights on. Shortly thereafter, the accident happened.

Was the driver trying to get away from the cops because she had been drinking? Only time will tell after the investigation is completed.If the driver had been drinking and was visibly intoxicated, then the families of the Doctors in the truck may have a claim against the alcohol seller for contributing to the accident. This is what is know as a Dramshop case.

In order to recover in a Dramshop case, the family of the victims must prove that the other driver was visibly intoxicated and that the alcohol provider sold at least one more drink to the other driver who was the one who caused the car wreck. Alcohol is involved in about 40% of the car crashes in MS. Irby car wreck.jpg Irby car wreck1.jpg

 

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February 13, 2009

OIL SPILL IN NEW ORLEANS, LA.

 

Employees of the company involved in the oil spill on the Mississippi River testified that their employer often allowed low-level mariners to work for higher-ranking crew.

1124448_ship.jpg On July 23, a towboat piloted by an inexperienced mate turned the barge into the path of an oncoming ship, casuing  280,000 gallons of fuel to be dumped into the  Mississippi river in New Orleans,LA.

 The pilot assigned to the Mel Oliver towboat, left the vessel days before the accident, leaving an apprentice mate at the helm, but his license prohibited him from steering a towboat without the supervision of a licensed pilot.  Officials at DRD Towing asked apprentice mates to substitute  because the company was short-staffed.   Daigle  warned the owners of DRD Towing that allowing apprentice mates to work unsupervised could cause problems for the company. "If something happens, we're going to get in trouble," he recalled telling DRD Towing executives.  

DRD Towing shut down its operations shortly after the oil spill.  

The Coast Guard will incorporate their testimony into a report meant to determine the cause of the accident and recommend possible sanctions against any of the guilty parties.

When companies try to cut corners like this one,then something usually goes wrong. Luckily, no one was injured or killed in the accident.The company was putting the dollar over safety like many of them do.

Oil Spill Hearings, The Times-Picayune 

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February 12, 2009

Bruce, MS Accident Injures Three

 

Three Bruce, MS residents were seriously injured in a two vehicle accident at the intersection of Hwy. 32 and 341. A passenger was airlifted to a hospital in Tupelo, MS. The accident caused the GMC to overturn when it was hit by a truck driven by Jack Pastis,Jr.

turned over suv.jpgLooks like speed or failure to keep a proper lookout was the cause of this accident.

 

Bruce Citizens Injured In Wreck, Calhoun County Journal

 

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February 11, 2009

Jackson, MS Accident Involves Logging Truck

 

The driver of an 18 wheeler log truck turned over on I-55 in Jackson, MS causing traffic to stop for hours.This accident happened during rush hour, so why was this truckdriver going so fast that he could not control his big rig in rush hour traffic.

log truck turnover.jpgThe Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations require that all 18 wheeler truckdrivers must reduce their speed and take special precautions where certain hazards exist. I guess this truckdriver was speeding in order to deliver his load so he could make another run because these guys get paid by the amount of runs they make in a day.

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February 10, 2009

Meridian,MS 18 Wheeler Accident Injures New Hampshire Man

 

Two 18 wheelers were driving side-by-side when one of them rear-ended a man driving a horse-drawn homemade vehicle on Highway 45 near Meridian,MS. It is legal to drive a horse-drawn vehicle on a MS highway. It appears that both 18 wheeler drivers were at fault for causing this accident: either they were going too fast under the circumstances or failed to control their big rig before the accident.

This accident could have been avoided if the big truck in the left lane would have slowed down and let the other truckdriver get over to avoid the collision.

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February 9, 2009

Petal,MS Man Killed In One Vehicle Accident

 

A Petal,MS man was killed in a one vehicle accident when his car crashed into a pole and then rolled over several times causing him to be ejected along with his passenger. The accident happened at 2:45 a.m. which means to me that he may have been fatigued or may have been drinking.

75579_drunk_driving.jpgThe passenger not only has a claim against the driver for running off of the road,but also has a claim against the alcohol provider if the driver were visibly intoxicated when the alcohol was sold.Cases like this are called "Dram Shop" cases under old English law concerning a dram of beer.

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February 8, 2009

Mississippi Has Primary Seat Belt Law

 

 

 26 states including Alabama, Alaska, California, Connecticut, Delaware, Washington D.C., Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Michigan, Mississippi, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Oregon, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, the Virgin Islands, Washington, the District of Columbia, American Samoa, Guam, the Northern Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands have primary seat belt laws on the books in their states.

 22 states including Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Florida, Idaho, Kansas, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming have secondary laws on the books in their states.

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February 7, 2009

Logging Truck Rear-Ends Car Knocking Car Into School Bus In New Augusta,MS

 

A logging truck was unable to stop in time causing an accident in New Augusta,MS on Tuesday. These truck drivers are paid by the load,so they drive as fast as they can to deliver their load so they can go pick up another load. The more trips they make in one day,the more money they make.

logging truck.jpgThis logging company may be liable for punitive damages for speeding in an area where children were getting on a school bus. Everyone knows that you should not speed where children are present and especially if you are driving a heavily loaded truck which takes extra time to stop.

Continue reading "Logging Truck Rear-Ends Car Knocking Car Into School Bus In New Augusta,MS" »

February 4, 2009

Hinds County,MS Jury Awards Multimillion Dollar Verdict

 

A Jackson,MS jury awarded a  contractor a large verdict against Trustmark Bank in a bad faith breach of contract case. The bank gave the contractor's money to the State of Mississippi claiming that the contractor was in default in numerous projects on college campuses throughout MS.

We handled a case similiar to this one against the bonding company for a developer of a subdivision. The jury returned a million dollar verdict;thereafter,the trial judge awarded interest of $90,000.The jury found that the actions of the insurance company constituted "bad faith" and awarded actual and punitive damages.

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February 3, 2009

Starkville,MS Man Gets 35 Years For Killing His Passenger While Driving Drunk

 

Charlesy Collins was killed by a drunk driver on April 26th,2008 in Starkville,MS. Alcohol is usually involved in about 40% of all car accidents in MS. Most authorities who investigate these accidents do not discover who sold the alcohol to the drunk driver. Under MS law,if someone sells alcohol to a minor or an intoxicated adult,then they can be held liable for contributing to the accident along with the drunk driver.

75579_drunk_driving.jpgSometimes lawyers handling accident cases do not even think about suing the bar,package liquor store, or grocery store that sold the alcohol to the drunk driver. This is exactly what happened in one of my cases. The lawyer who was contacted by the family told the family that the only amount of money the family could collect was from the drunk driver's car insurance company. The victims was seriously injured and the car insurance was not nearly enough to cover the medical bills.

When my lawfirm reviewed the case, we realized that a minor was the one who caused the accident and accocding to the accident report,had been drinking. We discovered that the minor bought beer from Kroger and Super D drugstore before the accident. We settled the case for $4,500,000 in a structured settlement with guaranteed payments for life to the injured victims.

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February 2, 2009

Tank Explosion in Gulfport,Mississippi

 

A 40,000 gallon asphalt tank ignited and exploded at Blacklidge Emulsions on Friday.The explosion was so severe that it rattled homes in the Gulfport area for miles. The industrial fire was glowing red and 19 different units were sent out to contain the damage. Investigators from the State FIre Marshall,Gulfport Fire Department, and Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality are trying to figure out what caused the tank to explode.

Usually these kind of explosions are caused by some fumes being ignited by a spark or heat source. My lawfirm was lead counsel for an explosion that happened at Partridge-Raleigh in Raleigh,Mississippi. We worked on the case for over a year,hired the best experts in the country,took numerous depositions,and finally settled the case about a week before trial. Three workers were killed and a welder was injured. The fumes from one tank caused the initial explosion which caused a second explosion. The proof showed that the owner/operator of the oilfield put oil in one of the tanks and failed to notify the workers that oil was in the adjacent tank. When the welder lit his torch,the fumes from the tank ignited causing the explosions. The U.S. Chemical Safety Board invested this accident. See videotape at their site www.chemsafety.gov.  

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February 1, 2009

Mississippi Uninsured Motorist Coverage

 
The insurance research council found that one in six drivers have no insurance. It is expected that those numbers will get worse from 13% in 2007 to 16% in 2010. Mississippi has 28% of uninsured motorists,one of the highest in the country. What does that mean to you?  It means that if you are in an accident in MS, you have a high chance that the other driver probably will not have any insurance. The bottom line is that the only insurance you will be able to make a claim against is your own insurance company. Your claim and the damages amount will be directly affected by the amount of uninsured motorist coverage that you buy from your own insurance company.  All insurance companies know that in MS there will be alot of uninsured claims,so the insurance companies ask their insurance agents to sell the lowest amount of coverage available. This is not fair to you and your family. You should tell your insurance agent that you want your uninsured motorist limits to be equal to your liability limits. For example,if you have $100,000 of liability limits,then you should ask your agent to give you $100,000 of uninsured limits. It usually only costs a small amount to increase your uninsured limits. Look at it this way,it is a cheap way to buy life insurance if you or a loved one is killed in an accident. A bonus,if you have more than one vehicle on your policy,you may stack your uninsured coverage,i.e., if you have $100,000 of um limits and have three cars on your policy,then you can stack limits for a total coverage of $300,000.

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