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Lake Charles Legal Issues Blog

Seeking compensation after the death of a child

Wrongful death suits are among the most painful and difficult legal processes imaginable. But, when the loss of life has been suffered by a child, the case is both more heartbreaking and also more difficult. In wrongful death suits, the primary method of making the victim's family whole is through paying economic damages. However, when a child is wrongfully killed, they have usually not demonstrated any specific earning potential, which can complicate the settlement.

Of course, no one wants to think of a human life as having a dollar-value. Unfortunately, this is often the very thing that must be done in a wrongful death case, as difficult as it may be. So how does one go about determining the value of a child's life, when that child was robbed of an opportunity to find his or her gifts and pursue his or her passions?

Hits just keep on coming with car air bag recalls

Prior to about 2014, few people knew what a Takata air bag was. Today, nearly everyone probably does and the list of people affected by vehicle recalls because of defects in the car safety devices only continue to grow.

As we noted in a post last October, federal investigators in the United States confirmed at least 11 deaths in this country. Another five occurred in Asia. The latest U.S. fatality was a 50-year-old woman.

Hits just keep on coming with car air bag recalls

Prior to about 2014, few people knew what a Takata air bag was. Today, nearly everyone probably does and the list of people affected by vehicle recalls because of defects in the car safety devices only continue to grow.

As we noted in a post last October, federal investigators in the United States confirmed at least 11 deaths in this country. Another five occurred in Asia. The latest U.S. fatality was a 50-year-old woman.

Scarring and disfigurement suits

Any time that a person involved in an accident or undergoes a medical procedure that results in scarring or disfigurement, the real-life impact can be devastating. Regardless of the circumstances that lead to the disfigurement, it is difficult to simply wake up and feel grateful to be alive if you don't feel like you are yourself anymore. In many cases, it may be appropriate to consider an injury claim to pursue damages for the disfigurement. In many cases, if the disfigurement occurred because of another party's negligence, especially because of a medical procedure, then there may be a legitimate case to pursue.

If the disfigurement occurred subsequent to a medical procedure, then it is reasonable that a victim may be able to sue for the scarring or disfigurement, provided that he or she can reasonably assert that they did not anticipate the disfigurement as part of the outcome, or that the scar is particularly unsightly enough to meet the court's standards of disfigurement.

Shreveport motorcyclist seriously injured in crash

Motorcycle riders exemplify a harsh intersection of philosophy and practical reality. On the one hand, there are very few things as liberating and validating of our liberties as riding a motorcycle down an open road. There are also few things as likely to cause catastrophic injury or death as a motorcycle accident. Where other drivers may have some protections in an accident, a motorcyclist stands to suffer extreme injury in just about any collision.

A man from Shreveport recently suffered just such a tragedy when his motorcycle collided with a truck near Bossier City. According to reports, the truck pulled out in front of the motorcycle, leading to the catastrophic accident.

Malpractice suits require serious professional evaluation

When we seek medical care and are not healed or suffer further harm, it is easy to believe that something wrong has happened, and that someone must be responsible. In many cases, there were factors beyond the control of a medical provider that complicated treatment. However, in some cases, there has been a failure somewhere along the line of care, and it is reasonable to hold someone responsible for your injury through a medical malpractice claim. The trouble is, it is not always easy to know when medical malpractice has actually occurred.

If you suspect that you are the victim of medical malpractice, you owe it to yourself to follow thorough on that suspicion. Unfortunately, this is easier said than done. Medical care is a complex area, with many different providers interacting to give you the care you need. This means that an injury may have many potentially liable parties.

What if my disability claim is denied?

Applying for disability benefits after an accident can be a frustrating experience for those whose requests are denied. There is a possible silver lining, however — if your disability claim gets denied, you can appeal the decision and perhaps see the decision reversed.

Understanding the process for appealing your claim denial can help you determine how best to proceed. Denials include documentation detailing the reason the claim wasn't approved. When appealing your denial, familiarize yourself with all the factors listed in the denial. If possible, appeals should address each factor that's listed. Appeals must include evidence that those contributing factors deserve to be reconsidered in your favor.

Can I recover damages if I'm partially at fault in an accident?

One of the most common questions that arises after a commercial truck accident is whether compensation can be pursued if both drivers have been deemed at least partially at-fault. The good news is that being deemed partially at-fault in an accident does not automatically disqualify you from pursuing compensation, but you will almost certainly want to consult with a knowledgeable attorney to evaluate the specifics of your individual case.

In cases like this, the legal theory of comparative negligence comes into play. In brief, comparative negligence means that a victim's ability to recover damages after an accident may be reduced by a percentage that directly correlates to the amount of fault they are deemed to bear.

Birth defects and birth injuries

Some of the most common and heartbreaking kinds of injuries that can arise from medical malpractice are birth injuries. Understandably, birth injuries can be devastating for new parents, who face a whole new host of challenges to care for and raise a child who has been injured either temporarily or permanently by subpar medical care.

It is important for all parents ad concerned parties to understand the difference between a birth injury and a birth defect. A birth injury is generally some form of harm that is suffered by an infant because of a failure on the part of medical personnel to provide the correct care during childbirth. This may mean that a doctor was negligent in his or her procedures or failed to respond properly to complications in the delivery when they arose. In contrast, a birth defect refers to some issue that occurred before birth took place, somewhere in the course of the pregnancy.

How might a manufacturer defend against a liability claim?

A product liability claim is a very peculiar kind of liability case, which requires a great deal of preparation and investigation to mount properly. Unlike other types of liability claims, which are often relatively straightforward in establishing the responsibility of the defendant, product liability claims can be fought against in a number of ways by the manufacturer. If you are considering filing a product liability claim, it is useful to understand the ways that a manufacturer may deflect the charges.

The most common defense against a product liability claim is that the plaintiff is responsible for his or her injuries or losses due to misuse of the product. The manufacturer would then further claim that it took appropriate measures to protect against foreseeable dangers, but that the plaintiff used the product in a way that exceeded those foreseeable dangers. For instance, if a consumer were to use shampoo as a substitute for cooking oil, and then claim that the resulting dish made them sick, the company could easily claim that shampoo is not for consumption, and the sickness is therefore not their responsibility.