Saturday, January 30, 2016

Maryland Wrongful Death Lawyers: Proving Fault in a Wrongful Death Claim

When a person in killed as a result of another person’s negligent act, the survivors of the victims may file a wrongful death claim as part of a civil lawsuit. State legislators created the wrongful death and survivor statutes in order to provide the family with financial support, help with funeral expenses, as well as other damages. Regardless of whether a plaintiff is seeking damages in a wrongful death case or a negligence case, he or she much prove the same factors, which include the following: Proving Duty A defendant is liable for negligence if the defendant owed the deceased a duty of “due care,” which essentially means the defendant had a duty to either keep the deceased safe and/or avoid any action that would be harmful to another person. In a wrongful death case, a judge will determine whether the defendant owed a duty of due care. A judge will consider the following factors in coming to a decision: Public policy consequences of finding a duty in all similar cases If t

Maryland Car Accident Lawyers: Dangerous Defect Prompts Nissan Recall

Nissan Motor Co has announced a major recall of its 2013-2015 Altima midsize cars to address potentially faulty hood latches. The problem can cause the hood to fly open unexpectedly while the car is in motion. The new recall covers 846,000 Altima vehicles manufactured in the United States between March 6, 2012 and December 31, 2014. An additional 24,895 cars in Canada are also being recalled for the same problem. The Altima is Nissan’s top selling vehicle, accounting for nearly 25% of Nissan’s sales last year. According to the company, improperly applied rust coating can flake off the secondary hood latch, exposing bare metal. Over time, the latch can rust and become stuck in the open position. If the main hood latch is inadvertently left open before the car is driven, the secondary latch can fail, causing the hood to suddenly and unexpectedly open. When this happens, the driver is unable to see the road ahead, greatly increasing the risk of a serious crash. This will be the third

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Baltimore Workers’ Compensation Lawyers Discuss Fine for Amazon

The U.S. Department of Labor recently issued a $7,000 fine to mega online retailer,, Inc. for failure to report 26 workplace injuries that occurred in their New Jersey warehouse in 2015. The fine comes after federal investigators from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) cited the online retailer with failing to report injuries sustained by workers in their Robbinsville fulfillment center. The 1.2 million foot warehouse employs almost 4,000 full-time, part-time and seasonal employees. In its July 2015 investigation, OSHA found Amazon not only endangered its workers at the facility by not reporting safety hazards, but was also providing medical services that were beyond what their medical team was qualified to perform. By failing to report these injuries, safety hazards and unsafe working conditions are not identified which puts workers at risk for continued injuries. OSHA requires injuries to be reported and hazard-alert letters sent out to ensure employ

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Maryland Truck Accident Lawyers: Operation Safe Driver Week

Crack Down on Reckless Driving Behaviors Recently, law enforcement officers throughout the United States inspected 19,480 commercial vehicles and drivers. This effort was part of the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance’s (CVSA) 2015 Operation Safe Driver Week that occurred last October. The total number of inspections was down from 2014’s Operation Safe Driver Week, where 24,184 inspections were completed. On January 5, 2016, CVSA announced the following results of 2015’s operation Safe Driver Week:

Monday, January 25, 2016

Maryland Medical Malpractice Lawyers: Medication Errors in Nursing Homes

Medication errors are a common and serious problem throughout the United States healthcare system. Inadequate training, complex or undefined procedures and poor communication between doctors and nurses can increase the chances of a medication mistake that results in an adverse drug event. Residents of nursing homes and other assisted living facilities are particularly vulnerable to suffering the harmful effects of a medication error due to their total reliance on nursing home staff to administer their medications. Families of those who have been harmed by a medication error caused by negligence may be able to recover compensation by filing a medical malpractice lawsuit against the nursing home facility or person responsible for their loved one’s care. In 2014, the Department of Health and Human Services released the results of a comprehensive study of adverse effects in skilled nursing facilities. According to the report, mistakes involving medication were the most common cause of h

Friday, January 22, 2016

Baltimore Workers’ Compensation Lawyers: Overexertion Tops Workplace Injury List

Liberty Mutual Research Institute for Safety has released their annual report ranking the top ten causes of serious nonfatal workplace injuries. The Liberty Mutual Workplace Safety Index is based on data compiled from Liberty Mutual, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and the National Academy of Social Insurance. Researchers analyze the data to determine which work injuries caused an employee to miss six or more days of work and then rank those events by total Workers’ Compensation costs. According to the index, Workers’ Compensation payouts for the most disabling workplace injuries amounted to nearly $62 billion in 2013, the most recent year studied. According to the index, overexertion involving external sources ranked first among the leading causes of disabling work-related injuries. In 2013, more than $15 billion in Workers’ Compensation was awarded to people who suffered an overexertion injury on the job, accounting for nearly one quarter of the national worker injury cost

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Maryland Truck Accident Lawyers: FMCSA to Require Electronic Log Books

Driver log books, also known as a driver’s record of duty status, can be a valuable source of evidence in any truck accident investigation. When accurate, they can reveal whether a driver has violated Hours of Service rules. These rules were put in place by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) to help prevent truck crashes caused by driver fatigue – a known problem in the trucking industry. Current standards allow trucking companies and their drivers to choose how they record their on- and off-duty hours, either electronically or by filling out paper log books. Unfortunately, the later method can make it easy for drivers who violate Hours of Service rules to falsify their records in effort to avoid liability in the event of a wreck. To combat this problem, the FMCSA has issued a new rule that will require drivers to replace paper log books with more reliable electronic logging devices (ELDs). The new rule is anticipated to affect approximately three million comm

Maryland Accident Lawyers: Busy Maryland Highway Set For Major Safety Improvements

State and local officials have announced plans to spend $152 million to fund needed improvements to a dangerous stretch of Maryland Route 32 that connects Carroll County and Howard County. The announcement comes after nearly a decade of requests by those who contend that a portion of the road is both a traffic and safety nightmare. There have been at least 76 car accidents reported in the area over the past few years, with 31 resulting in 40 injuries. The project will be completed in three phases and will cover more than 20 miles of the highway between Maryland Route 108 in Howard County and Maryland Route 26 in Carroll County. The first phase, expected to begin this summer, will focus on expanding the stretch between Route 108 and Linden Church Road from two-lanes to four lanes. Traffic in that area is projected to nearly double over the next 20 years. Phases II and III will also include the addition of lanes to portions of Route 32. Other improvements include plans to replace a stru

Monday, January 18, 2016

Maryland Car Accident Lawyers: Night Shift Workers More Likely to Drive Drowsy

A recent study undertaken by Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH) found that night shift workers are 37.5 percent more likely to crash while commuting home than they would be if they had not worked a night shift. The study, which was published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, compared driver performance after working a night shift to the performance of the same drivers, at the same time, but after a good night’s sleep. This study confirms that drowsy driving can be extremely dangerous for everyone on the road. For this study, 16 night shift workers completed two, two-hour driving sessions. Prior to the first session, the drivers slept about 7.6 hours the night before, with no night shift work. Prior to the second session, drivers were tested immediately following a night shift. Both sessions were tested at the same time of day. Researchers measured brief micro-sleep episodes with an EEG, and partial eyelid closure with slow eye movements, which indicate that a per

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Maryland Medical Malpractice Lawyers: Medical Errors in Outpatient Settings

Urgent care centers, physician offices and same day surgical centers offer a more convenient alternative to lengthy and uncomfortable hospital emergency room visits and inpatient facilities. The growth of outpatient procedures and express medical centers that treat a greater number of patients more quickly also comes with an increase of medical mistakes. The Journal of the American Medical Association reports nearly an equal amount of medical negligence claims between inpatient and outpatient facilities. The report studied over 10,000 medical malpractice claims in 2009 and found that 48 percent occurred in inpatient medical institutions and 43 percent of the claims were in outpatient settings. Common Medical Mistakes for Outpatients The cases reviewed by the Journal of the American Medical Association revealed that the most common cause of medical malpractice claims in outpatient settings was misdiagnosis or the failure to diagnose. Many symptoms and ailments are consistent with sever

Maryland Car Accident Lawyers: Early Data Indicates Rise in Car Accident Fatalities

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has released its official fatality statistics for 2014, indicating a small but overall decline in traffic deaths from the previous year. While this is good news, the agency followed up the report with a sobering outlook for 2015. Preliminary data reveals 16,225 lives were lost in car accidents during the first half of 2015 – an 8.1% increase over the same period the previous year. The report broke down the statistics regionally, with the section that includes Maryland showing a troubling 13% increase in motor vehicle deaths over the same period the previous year. Final Crash Data for 2014 An alarming 32,675 people were fatally injured and another 2.3 million incurred non-fatal injuries in motor vehicle accidents in the U.S. Nationwide, 4,884 pedestrians and 726 cyclists were struck by motor vehicles and killed Drunk driving fatalities accounted for 9,967 deaths (31% of all crash fatalities) Speed was a factor in crashes that

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Maryland Personal Injury Lawyers: Lawsuit Claims Popular Hair Care Product Causes Hair Loss

More than 200 consumers across 40 states have joined together to file a class action lawsuit against the maker of a popular hair care brand. They are claiming WEN Hair Care products caused them to suffer extreme hair loss and damage to their scalps. The products are designed, manufactured and sold by celebrity stylist, Chaz Dean, in partnership with infomercial powerhouse Guthy-Renker, also named in the suit. WEN’s cleansing conditioner is marketed as a gentle alternative to ordinary shampoo and conditioner. The company advertises that the product is safe for frequent use and is good for all hair types and textures. WEN products have been endorsed by high profile celebrities including Brooke Shields, Alyssa Milano and Angie Harmon. Infomercials feature women claiming the product improved the health and appearance of their hair after just one use. Hundreds of consumers, mostly women, have come forward to complain that the product failed to deliver on its promise to give them shiny, h

Baltimore Social Security Disability Lawyers Discuss Disability Benefits for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS), also known as chronic fatigue and immune dysfunction syndrome (CFIDS), is a serious and debilitating condition characterized by extreme fatigue that is not relieved by rest and may be worsened by physical or mental activity. Other symptoms that commonly accompany CFS include weakness, muscle pain, impaired memory, inability to concentrate, insomnia and post-exertion malaise that lasts 24 hours or more. If you are suffering from chronic fatigue syndrome, the symptoms can affect every aspect of your life, making it difficult for you to perform at the level of activity you did before you became ill. If your symptoms become so severe that you are unable to work, you may qualify to receive Social Security disability benefits through the Social Security Administration (SSA). How the Social Security Administration Evaluates Cases Involving Chronic Fatigue Syndrome In order to qualify for Social Security disability benefits for chronic fatigue syndrome, you mus

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Maryland Car Accident Lawyers: Driverless Cars Have Higher Crash Rates

Once considered a futuristic idea, self-driving cars are becoming increasingly mainstream. Experts predict that nearly 10 million cars with self-driving features will be on the road by 2020. The makers of these high-tech vehicles promise they will save thousands of lives each year by preventing car accidents caused by human error or negligence. But according to a recent study on current driverless car crash rates, more work needs to be done to make these vehicles safer to share the road with human drivers. Researchers at the University of Michigan’s Transportation Research Institute found self-driving cars have a crash rate twice as high as regular vehicles. The reason behind this surprising statistic has to do with the way other human drivers interact with the cars. Robot-driven cars are programmed to obey every traffic law – all the time. While this may sound like a good idea in theory, it does not always work in real-life road conditions, such as when the car tries to merge ont

Baltimore Workers’ Compensation Lawyers: Avoid These Mistakes When Reporting a Work-Related Injury

If you were hurt in a workplace accident or have recently been diagnosed with an occupational illness or injury, the actions you take during the first few days will set the tone for the rest of your claim. This can make or break your chances of recovering the compensation you need to provide for yourself and your family, so it is important to use this time wisely. At LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton, our Baltimore Workers’ Compensation lawyers have helped thousands of individuals who have been hurt on the job get the benefits they deserve. Below are some of the more common mistakes you should avoid when reporting a work-related injury or illness. Keeping it a Secret Many people feel reluctant to report a work-related injury to their supervisor. They may be embarrassed or worry that they will lose their job. They may think that the injury is not that serious and that they can work through the pain. However, failing to report the incident immediately can come back to haunt you later on if

Monday, January 4, 2016

Maryland Personal Injury Lawyers Discuss Safe Use of Space Heaters

As the cold of winter finally begins to settle in, many people are looking for low-cost heating methods for their home or office. When used properly, space heaters can be a great way to warm up cold or drafty areas without having to heat unused rooms, saving on energy costs. However, if a space heater is defective or used improperly, it can also be extremely dangerous. Common problems associated with the use of space heaters are: Fire Space heaters, whether portable or stationary, are the cause of roughly one-third of all winter house fires and 80% of home heating fire deaths. Burns – The coils inside space heaters become extremely hot, creating a risk of burn injury for anyone or anything that comes in contact with the unit, especially small children and pets. There is also a danger that the space heater will overheat and burn flooring or other nearby items such as bedding or drapery. Carbon monoxide poisoning – Some space heaters use fuel instead of electricity to operate. These

Sunday, January 3, 2016

Maryland Medical Malpractice Lawyers: Liability for Malpractice in Emergency Rooms

One of the most challenging positions in the medical profession is that of an emergency room physician. Despite the chaos and fast paced environment,  ER physicians have a duty to provide a standard of care to their patients. Those working in an emergency room can be held liable for harm that occurs because of their negligence. There are three basic elements that a plaintiff must prove in an emergency room-related medical malpractice lawsuit in order to be successful: A doctor-patient relationship was created and existed; That the treatment provided, or lack of treatment provided, was due to negligence; and That the patient was harmed by the negligence Doctor-Patient Relationship The doctor-patient relationship requirement is where each case begins because if a plaintiff cannot prove that a relationship was formed and existed, they will not be able to prove that negligence and harm occurred either. When a doctor examines a patient or provides them with treatment while the plaintiff i