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March 13, 2009

CAN A GOOD SAMARITAN RECOVER AFTER HELPING ACCIDENT VICTIMS?

 

After a two car wreck in Lucedale, MS, a good samaritan who helped the accident victims died of a heart attack at the local hospital. A 1997 Pontiac crossed over Highway 98 causing the accident with a 2006 Ford F-350 truck. It was a broadside collision and both vehicles came to rest about 75 ft. away. The car had two passengers in it,neither of which were wearing a selt belt. The three year old had no child seat.

pic of car wreck.jpgWHO CAN SUE WHOM AND WHY? The driver of the truck can sue the driver of the car for pulling out in front of his vehicle. The passengers in the car can sue their driver for pulling out in front of the truck;also, someone was negligent for allowing the 3 yr. old baby to be riding in the car without a child safety seat. The good samaritan may be able to make a claim against the driver of the car if his family can prove that the accident and his helping out thereafter contributed to his heart attack and subsequent death.

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March 7, 2009

SHOULD YOU HIRE AN ATTORNEY OR SETTLE ON YOUR OWN?

 

Numerous clients over the years have asked me is it better for me to settle my case on my own or hire an attorney. The bottom line is the client is worried that after paying my attorney fee that they would have come out better by settling their case on their own.

Most of the time it is better to hire an attorney because the client usually gets more money in the settlement AFTER paying the attorney fee.

Let's take for example, the Trade Center Litigation. There were 5,560 claimants who chose to settle by themselves without hiring an attorney. They received $7,000,000,000.(that is seven billion).Just recently 92 families of victims of the WTC attack who were represented by lawyers settled for $500,000,000.  That may seem like alot of money to you, but lets take a closer look at the settlements. 500 million divided by 92 equals $5,434,782 average per family. These were families who were represented by attorneys. The families who chose not to hire an attorney received an average of $1,258,992. The families represented by attorneys received about 4.3 times more money than the families who represented themselves.

The cases were filed against three airline companies and other defendants.

jet.jpgThe insurance companies know this,the lawyers know this,but the clients usually do not know this. Of the 95 families who filed suit with an attorney, 92 settled before trial for the above amount;three families decided to go to trial. Who wants to guess how much money to jury will award in these three cases? Will it be more than $5,434,782 per family?

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March 6, 2009

Hit and Run Driver Kills Pedestrian In Panola County, MS

 

A Panola County, MS accident resulted in the death of Benny Hicks whose car had broken down. Benny was found dead alongside I-55 near the Como,MS exit. Apparently, he was hit by an 18 wheeler who keep going and left the scene of the accident. Parts of the red fender were found by the MS Highway Patrol. MPH later found the tractor trailer and driver that caused this accident. 18 wheeler.jpg

QUESTION: How can you run over someone,knock their body over 30',cause damage to your front end and not know you were involved in an accident? I'm sure the driver is going to claim that he never knew that he hit anything, but the physical facts should show otherwise. I wonder if the driver would be willing to take a lie detector test to determine if his story is true? If he passes the test, don't charge him criminally, if he flunks the test, indict the sucker. Either way, the family of Mr. Hicks has a claim against the 18 wheeler company for causing his death.

Under the wrongful death statute, any family member can make a claim against the insurance company of the truck driver for the accident. They can claim damages for loss of income, loss of love,society and affection, pain and suffering, funeral and other bills. Usually the tractor trailer companies carry at least $750,000 to $1,000,000 of insurance coverage.

The MS Legislature passed a law putting caps on damages in these type of cases so the most anyone can recover for non-economic damages is $1,000,000.

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March 5, 2009

Two Injured In Car Wreck On Natchez Trace In Jackson, MS

 

There was a one vehicle accident on the Natchez Trace in Jackson, MS when Richard Greene ran off the road and hit a tree. The passenger, Linda Milner, received enough injuries to stay hospitalized. They were both officers for the library system in Kosciusko,MS.

Who has a claim against whom and why? The passenger has a claim against the driver and his insurance company in additon to being able to make a claim against her own insurance company if the driver's insurance coverage was not enought to take care of her damages. Also, since they were coming back home from a required work related meeting,then workman's compensation may apply. I wonder what caused him to run off of the road at 6:30 pm?

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March 4, 2009

Cyclist Killed By Speeding Car In Jackson, Mississippi

 

The driver was going so fast that after he hit Bennie Moore that he drug the biker over 100 yards before hitting the curb. Charlie Taylor pled guilty to manslaughter for causing this accident. Mr. Moore was riding his bike in the turning lane when he was hit by a Lincoln driven by Taylor. After causing severe life threatening injuries and severing the biker's feet, Taylor does not stop to try to help his victim,but instead, leaves the scene of the accident and allows Mr. Moore to lay dying in the road.

Who has a claim against whom and why? The family of Mr. Moore has a claim against the driver of the Lincoln for causing the accident;but, the family may also have a claim against their own insurance company for underinsured motorist coverage and med pay coverage. One may be covered under this provision in your own insurance policy even though you were not in your car at the time the accident occured. In other words, it covers bikers and pedestrians.

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March 3, 2009

No Seatbelts Send Two Children To Jackson, MS Hospital

 

Two children were severely injured in a one car crash when the driver ran off the road and hit a tree in Amite County, MS. The impact caused one child to go through the windshield and the other child to be pinned in the back seat. The children were taken to UMC in Jackson, MS.

After working on injury and death cases for over 34 years, I have seen so many accidents come across my desk. Usually the ones who wear seatbelts live, and the ones who don't wear seatbelts, die; it's as simple as that. Accidents happen so fast that there is not enough time to react and then it is too late. My family buckles up as soon as the ignition is turned on;the car does not move unless everyone has their seatbelt on, no ifs ands or buts.

The warning light and the buzzer are a reminder of something that you already know.Please buckle up out there for you and anyone in your car. Thumbnail image for van.jpg

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March 2, 2009

Head-On Crash Kills Two People In Leake County, Mississippi

 

A truck and suv collided head-on in Leake County, MS which killed two people and injured three other people in the crash. The truck lost control while traveling in a curve and went into the wrong lane hitting the suv head-on. The driver of the truck and a passenger in the suv were killed. Passengers in both vehicles sustained personal injuries and ended up at UMC in Jackson, MS.

Who has a claim against whom and why? Lets assume that the people killed in the accident are from the Indian Reservation, and that the accident happened within Indian property. If that is true, then anyone who was injured or killed by an Indian, cannot sue in a Court of Law,but would have to go before the Indian Tribunal to seek relief. Go figure. Maybe, the driver had too much FIREWATER which may have caused the accident. So beware of traveling in and near Philadelphia, MS you just may end up dead with your family left out in the cold with no recourse.

It may be possible for the personal injury victims to file a claim against their own underinsured motorist coverage since they are unable to make a claim agaisnt the Indian Reservation driver.

If you know of someone who was injured or killed on the Reservation, call us now to discuss your case 601-969-1977 or 1-800-640-4478.

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March 1, 2009

MISSISSIPPI CAR WRECK CAUSED BY MORGAN FREEMAN

 

Actor Morgan Freeman is being sued in a Mississippi court for causing a one vehicle car wreck that happened in August, 2008, near Clarksdale,MS. The allegations are that Morgan was drinking before, during and after diner at a local country club and the alcohol contributed to the accident. Demaris Meyer filed the lawsuit seeking damages for pain and suffering, medical bills, lost wages and permanent disability as a result of the accident.

morgan freeman.jpgAny business that has a license to sell alcohol can be sued for serving alcohol to a customer who has become visibly intoxicated. So, in this case, if Morgan was showing signs of intoxication to the bartender at the country club, and they continued to serve/sell drinks to Morgan, then the country club could also be sued for contributing to the car crash and resulting injuries to Demaris. This is especially true if the blood alcohol content of Morgan was over .25% at the time of the accident. At that level, most drinkers show signs of intoxication. The time of the taking of the test is important because the body eliminates one drink per hour from your system. So if the BAC test was not done until about 5 hours after the accident and showed .15% at that time,then you can backtrack and prove that the BAC was .25% 5 hours earlier at the time of the accident. One drink is about the same as .02%, so 5 hours X .02%= .10% difference. Other factors have to be taken into consideration, such as the weight of the person, the ability of the person to build up a tolerance to alcohol,if you are a heavy drinker, and whether you have had anything to eat which slows down the absorption of the alcohol,but not the amount. There are also three phases of the alcohol in a person's system: the absorption phase when the person is drinking the alcohol, the leveling off phase when the person stops drinking alcohol, and the elimination phase when the alcohol begins to start getting out of your system.

There are numerous other factors involved in handling these liquor liability cases. We know one thing for sure,i.e., 40% of the accidents in MS involve alcohol. morgan freeman car.jpg

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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.  



 

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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.

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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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