Month: September 2016

Don’t Let Halloween Hazards Turn into Premises Liability

Here comes Halloween!  As a parent, you take steps to protect your children and keep them safe. You recognize the importance of being proactive during this holiday that comes with the potential for injury.

Don't let Halloween hazzards turn into premises liability

If your household participates in neighborhood festivities by welcoming trick-or-treaters or hosting a party, continue your vigilance and protect yourself.  Premises liability means that , as a homeowner, you have a legal responsibility to keep your property safe and free from any hazard that might cause harm . Perform a safety check-up for your premises. Failure to remedy problems may result in legal action. Remember, you are liable for damages if you knew about the problem, should have realized the potential danger, or actually caused the incident. Protect yourself.

  • Light up the home as much as possible. If your house has  excessively dark areas, consider adding flood lights or solar lamps
  • Keep walkways in good repair. Broken pavement or loose bricks are accidents waiting to happen
  • Keep pets inside
  • Repair any broken steps and fix any loose porch railings
  • Remove potential hazards such as electrical wires, hoses, toys and lawn decorations
  • Use battery-powered votive lights instead of candles
  • Patch and/or fill in any divots in the lawn

Conversely, if you , or a loved one, is injured while trick-or-treating remember:

  • Seek medical attention, get a medical report
  • Take pictures of the area and get the names of any witnesses
  • Notify the property owner of your injury, but do not make any statements or comments about your condition

Whether you have been hurt, or someone was injured on your property, contact us for advice as soon a possible. In most cases, the timing could be critical.

Are You A Fearful Driver Facing Hit and Run Charges?

Hit and runs continue to capture big headlines, especially in the southern half of the United States. According to well-published statistics, more than 50,000 occurred within the last five years. That averages out to in excess of 10,000 accidents annually. And the southern half of our nation is not alone. Hit and run accidents have the potential to happen anywhere. Of course, many people have also begun to question why they’re happening with such frequency. Is it connected to our nation’s motor vehicle laws?

Are You A Fearful Driver Facing Hit and Run Charges?

In the summer of 2015, researchers asked that very same question. Afterward, they published an academic paper detailing their answer. Their work strongly indicated that today’s laws often have an impact on drivers’ behaviors. As such, they may play a role in a hit and run drivers’ legal defense options. Where does the driver’s state of mind fit in? It traces back to the differences between civil and criminal defense cases.

Licensed drivers know that they are required to report. However, many do not understand the reporting process. Plus, they may not even realize what they’ve done. Consequently, they could inadvertently flee the scene or report much later than required. In addition, they could be aware of what happened, panic and act inappropriately. Depending on those cognitive issues, charges filed against hit and run drivers may vary.

For example, some accidents may end with misdemeanor charges being filed against participants and others could result in felonies. Thus, people accused of hit and run crimes should consult with criminal defense attorneys as quickly as possible as it may be possible to avoid more serious charges. Furthermore, criminal defense attorneys may be able to get rid of the hit and run charge altogether. Again, outcomes are contingent on several factors that must be explored at great length. To work with a criminal defense attorney on a hit and run cases in Texas, please contact us.

Victims of Railroad Accidents and Their Legal Rights

Railroad accidents can be devastating, and it is imperative for victims of railroad accidents to be aware of their legal rights so they can get the compensation they deserve. There can often be multiple parties at fault in a railroad accident. Generally speaking, there are two main types of railroad accidents: collisions between trains and vehicles at railway crossings and accidents caused by train malfunctions or derailments.

Victims of Railroad Accidents and Their Legal Rights

Intersection Collisions

Crashes between trains and motor vehicles at railway crossings occur all-too-frequently. In some cases, these crashes are caused by the negligence of the vehicle driver. In other cases, there was not an adequate warning to drivers that a train was approaching. And, sometimes a train was going too fast. There can be a number of reasons these accidents occur. Determining fault requires a thorough investigation of the facts surrounding the accident.

Equipment Malfunctions and Derailments

These types of cases are usually extremely complex. Equipment malfunctions, conductor error, negligent maintenance, and train track damage can all be causes of an accident. Often, several of these factors play a part. It can, therefore, be a difficult task to sort through the facts and determine who is to blame. An experienced railroad accident attorney will be able to investigate these types of cases thoroughly and figure out the best case for accident victims to make.

The Federal Employers’ Liability Act

The Federal Employers’ Liability Act (FELA) provides compensation for railroad workers who are injured during the course and scope of their employment. The FELA establishes certain safety standards that railroad companies must adhere to. When railroad companies violate these provisions, they can be liable to injured workers.

Victims of Railroad Accidents Need Experienced Legal Counsel

Railroad accident cases can be complex. There may be both state and federal laws implicated in a railroad accident claim, and an in-depth factual investigation may be necessary. If you or a loved one has been the victim of a railroad accident, an experienced railroad accident attorney can help.

Clay Hinds, Attorney at Law, is an Ellis County firm dedicated to getting clients the compensation they deserve. Clay has experience with railroad accident cases. If you would like to discuss your case, contact us for a free consultation.