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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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January 31, 2009

Large Truck Carrying Butane Overturns Near Forest,MS

 

A large truck overtuned on Thursday,Jan.29th,2009, which was carrying butane;about 15 homes and businesses were evacuated when officials found a leak.Butane is a highly explosive substance and has to be regulated by the U.S. Government.

I handled a case one time in Central Mississippi when a faulty leak of butane caused an explosion at a Dairy Queen restaurant.One of the workers' face was almost burned off.We sued the manufacturer of the valve that caused the leak.After five days of trial, the defendants settled the case for a large amount.

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January 30, 2009

Pedestrian Killed By Truck In Natchez,Mississippi

 

On Jan.26th,2009, Johnny Calcote of Natchez,MS was struck and killed by a truck driven by Antonio Thomas.Bertha Young,Johnny's sister, said her brother was walking home from visiting his two children.She said that Johnny always had a smile on his face for everyone.

When victims are killed by someone else's negligence,then the family may collect damages for loss of income and loss of their loved one,pain and suffering and other damages allowed by law under the wrongful death statute.

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January 29, 2009

Costly Mistakes To Avoid When Selecting An Accident Lawyer

 

How you choose your attorney is extremely important.I hear too often complaints from clients who hired the wrong attorney to handle their accident/injury case. Once the case is over,it is too late. Usually the client does not know any better until the case is over and then he/she finds out that the attorney did not do such a good job. To try to avoid this problem, I have come up with a list of "8 costly mistakes to avoid when selecting an accident lawyer". Here they are:

1)Choosing a lawyer who does not have enough trial experience; 2)Choosing a lawyer only because you like his/her advertising; 3)Choosing the lawyer who promises you the most money; 4)Choosing a lawyer because he/she expects to settle your case; 5)Choosing an attorney because of a referral from a friend; 6)Choosing an attorney because he/she appears successful; 7)Choosing a lawyer because of the location of his/her office; 8)Not reviewing the lawyer's track record for successful trials,for example, how many verdicts has the attorney obtained over one million dollars?

paul snow.jpgFor answers to these questions, please call Paul Snow for a FREE copy of our report.

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January 28, 2009

18 Wheeler Kills Teen in Olive Branch,Mississippi

 

18 wheeler.jpgA 16 yr. old teenager was killed in Olive Branch,MS Tuesday morning about 7 a.m. on Jan. 27th,2009. Randy Jones was killed when the semi-truck turned left in front of Jones' GMC SUV causing the accident.Robert Newman from Arkansas was driving the 18-wheeler tractor-trailer.

These accidents are avoidable if the truckdriver were paying attention. Alot of times the truckdriver is fatigued and has poor judgment.A Mississippi accident lawyer would be able to tell how many hours the driver was on duty by checking the driver log books.

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January 27, 2009

Greenville,MS Man Killed In Hit-And-Run Accident

 

On December 19th,2008, Elmer Weatherword was hit and killed by a hit-and-run driver in Greenville,MS.The Washington County Sheriff's office has made no arrests.They have looked in Arkansas,North Mississippi,and even Tupelo and surrounding areas.

The family of hit-and-run victims are able to collect benefits from their own insurance company when certain conditions exist.One must prove that the deceased was hit by a vehicle,the accident must be reported to the authorities,an accident report must be made,the family must have an insurance policy on at least one vehicle in the household,and the deceased must be related to the owner of the policy.

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January 20, 2009

Trucker Killed In Overturn Accident Near Brandon, Mississippi

 

A truckdriver was killed in an one vehilce accident on I-20 near Brandon,MS when his 18 wheeler overturned about 7 a.m.on Jan. 20th.The trailer was carrying 8,500 gallons of gasoline which required both lanes of I-20 to be closed down for over 12 hrs.

Sometimes the trailers that carry these large amounts of liquid are not manufactered with the proper seperator devices which prevent the liquid from moving around during transport.The trailers should be equipped with bafflers to divide the sections of the trailer.This prevents the trailer from loosing control if and when the liquid starts to move around inside of the trailer.

My office worked on a case against a trailer mfg. for an accident similiar to this one. 18 wheeler.jpg

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January 3, 2009

15 Secrets For Getting A Fair Settlement For Your MS Auto Accident Injuries

 

 In my accident lawyer practice, I often meet with clients who have questions about their accident. Sometimes,they have traumatic brain injuries,spinal cord injuries, or neck and back injuries. Most of my clients are from Mississippi,but sometimes I represent clients from Louisiana and other states. Below is a list of some suggestions that should help you in getting the money you deserve for your accident case:

  • Conduct a complete investigation;
  • Get photos of all important elements of your case;
  • Don't release your medical records to the other party's insurance company;
  • Get the insurance company to set up a high reserve account;
  • Keep the adjuster informed about the seriousness of your injuries;
  • Dont let the insurance adjuster pressure you into settling your case;
  • Keep a day-by-day diary of your injuries;
  • Know all your damages;
  • Keep all bills and receipts related to your accident;
  • Know all your injuries;
  • Know your sources for insurance coverage;
  • Stay under your doctors care until your doctor releases you;
  • File your lawsuit right away;
  • Ask a qualified trial lawyer to evaluate your case;
  • If you decide to hire a lawyer,choose a trial lawyer who isn't afraid to go to court.
Please call me now and I will send you a FREE copy for more detailed info.

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January 2, 2009

Mississippi Consumer's Guide For Injured Victims

 

In my Consumers Guide For Injured Victims, you will discover: 15 Secrets for getting a fair settlement for your injuries* How to build the strongest possible case*16 Tough questions to ask before you hire a lawyer* 8 Costly mistakes to avoid when selecting an accident lawyer* When you need an attorney ,and when you don't* 7 Misconceptions about injury cases* The most powerful weapon you can use against an insurance company* 11 Types of damages you may be able to collect for your injuries.

paul snow.jpgFor your own protection, don't be in a rush to settle your Mississippi injury claim. Make sure your doctor is satisfied that you won't have future complications caused by the accident. The money you recover for your injuries won't mean much if you continue to have pain and medical problems for the rest of your life.

*  Please contact me for a FREE copy of my Consumers Guide For Injured Victims.

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January 1, 2009

WHY I BECAME A TRIAL LAWYER

 

paul snow.jpgWHY I BECAME A TRIAL LAWYER

 

I was in the eighth grade and approximately 13 years old when I decided that I either wanted to become a golf pro or a lawyer. After graduating from high school, I was one of the best golfers in the State of Mississippi and received a golf scholarship to the University of Mississippi (Ole Miss). My freshman year, I became a pledge in one of the fraternities on the Ole Miss Campus among 50 other pledges. After the first semester, only 10 of the 50 pledges made passing grades. 40 of the pledges flunked out of college. Of the 10 pledges that made their grades the first semester, three of us became lawyers, two of us became doctors, and one of us became a flight instructor in the Navy. I knew then that I must have some common sense and hard-working ability to succeed in school. I married my high school sweetheart and went to a local community college for my sophomore year. My junior year, I returned to Ole Miss and graduated with a business degree in May of 1972. Two weeks later, I entered the University of Mississippi School of Law. Because I was paying my own way through law school, my goal was to finish the three year curriculum course in two years and three months. I worked extra jobs during college and knew that I would have to work extra jobs during law school, in addition to obtaining student loans. I took extra courses during the summertime in order to complete law school early. At that time, my income was below the average poverty level for the country. I was married and at that time, had one child, and just did the best I could.

Midway through my law school career, my father became paralyzed and I had to miss one summer of law school to help take care of my father. While I was taking care of my father, I worked for a local law firm as a law clerk and learned valuable experience in how a law firm operated. When I returned to law school, I had a new-found knowledge that assisted me in my classes. Also, while I was in law school, I was the President of the legal fraternity, President of the Lamar Society of International Law, and I drafted legislation which was passed by the Mississippi lawmakers. I graduated law school in December of 1974, which took two years and six months instead of two years and three months. Of the 360 students who started law school when I did, only 80 graduated.

After graduating from law school, I started working for the law firm of Barnett, Montgomery, McClintock & Cunningham. Ross Barnett was an ex-governor of Mississippi. These lawyers were trial lawyers and I received valuable experience learning how to try cases while working for this firm. I tried 10 jury trials by myself my first year out of law school. After a year and a half of working at the law firm, I went out on my own and have been on my own ever since, for the past 34 years. I was the youngest President of the Hinds County Trial Lawyers Association and joined numerous organizations during my career.

I have devoted my career to representing individuals who have been injured or killed in accidents or wronged by big corporations and insurance companies. I represent the little guy against the large businesses and corporations who try to take advantage of the less fortunate. There is nothing more satisfying than taking on one of the biggest corporations in the world and making them answer for the problems they have caused numerous victims. I am proud to be a trial lawyer who represents individuals against corporate America.

When those who have been injured or killed have nowhere else to turn, they turn to me. I believe one of my goals and duties as a human being is to help others. I am always in favor of the underdog. When we walk into the courtroom, there is no other place on this planet where an individual can stand on equal footing with a huge corporate defendant. This is the war that I fight. It is waged at a battlefield on which I gladly stand. My strength is derived from the belief that my God-given talents are given to me for a reason. My goal is to make myself available to those who have been wronged by others' misconduct. It is not a glamorous calling and there is no guaranteed income. My goal is to achieve justice for my clients, working to right wrongs, not hide them, working against the wrongdoers, not for them. At the end of the day, I know that I have given someone without hope a fighting chance.

I have litigated and settled just about any type of accident or injury case that you can think of. I have spoken at seminars and taught other lawyers how to handle accident and injury cases across the country. I have written numerous articles, also teaching other lawyers how to handle these type of cases. A lot of lawyers hire my law firm in order to represent their clients in working-up serious injury and death cases.

If someone asked me what kind of lawyer I am, I say I am a trial lawyer. I believe in America, our form of government, individual freedom, and our American legal system. I represent and help people to protect, enforce and preserve those precious rights and individual freedoms which were so wisely granted by the founding fathers of our great nation. The spark that was ignited in me in 1964 has kept me satisfied for over 34 years of trial practice. I am proud to be an American and I am especially proud to be a trial lawyer.

One day, we will all be judged for our actions. As far as my actions go as a plaintiff attorney, I look forward to placing them before the ultimate judge. I represent plaintiffs and I would not change that for all the world.

He who shuts his ear to the cry of the poor will also cry himself and not be answered. Proverbs 21:13.