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Negligence Lawyer Delray Beach, FL

Negligence Lawyer Delray Beach, FL

Negligence-Lawyer-Delray-Beach-FLEvery client deserves to have an attorney that they can trust to guide them through their case, the way a qualified negligence lawyer in the Delray Beach, FL community is capable of doing. However, there are times when lawyers have acted negligently with their case. If you have found that your lawyer has committed legal malpractice, it may be advisable to consult a legal malpractice lawyer about your options. The trusted Law Office of Eric H. Luckman, P.A. understands that this can be a difficult decision to make, so our team is committed to getting your existing case on the right path. 

Negligence lawyer Delray Beach, FL

It can be hard to decide what the best course of action is when you’re faced with the challenge of your lawyer acting negligently. Clients trust their lawyers to support them during an already stressful and exhausting time. It’s a unique situation that no client wants to find themselves, but fortunately there are ways to overcome the hurdle and prevent any threats to the success of an impacted case. 

What is Legal Malpractice? 

Legal malpractice occurs when your current lawyer fails to adhere to their legal responsibilities, or fails to conduct themselves in a manner that another lawyer would do in similar circumstances. This can lead to preventable economic damages and negatively affect the trajectory of a client’s case, introducing unnecessary complications. To prove malpractice, a skilled negligence lawyer trusted by the Delray Beach, Florida community will have the competence to show critical evidence of what a case’s outcome could have been if it was handled correctly initially.  

Signs of Legal Malpractice

Lawyers can commit a number of acts that would be classified under legal malpractice. To file a legal malpractice claim, know some of the rule violations below:

  • Ignorance of laws
  • Poor planning
  • Improper evidence evaluation 
  • Conflict of interest
  • Failure to follow instructions
  • Clerical errors
  • Failure to attend appointments, meetings, and hearings
  • Libel or slander
  • Loss of files and inaccurate documentation

Your channel of communication with your lawyer should be open throughout the duration of your case. They should not withhold information from you that you have a right to know. Another violation is when a lawyer delegates work to another employee or person who shouldn’t have access to your case details.

Building a Strong Case for Your Legal Malpractice Claim

It’s best to meet with a negligence lawyer with your compiled evidence as early as you can. There are several ways an attorney can show elements of legal malpractice, such as proving that your lawyer had the duty of providing you with legal representation, violated that duty by committing specific negligent actions, and as a result of their actions caused emotional harm and economic damages. 

Consult an Experienced Negligence Lawyer 

Though proving legal malpractice claims can be challenging, having a qualified and competent lawyer you can trust by your side can ease the pain from the experience. If you want to start building your case, begin your free consultation with a reputable negligence lawyer in the Delray Beach, Florida area now.

How Non Payment of Child Support May Result in Criminal Charges

If your child’s other parent is delinquent in their payment of child support to you, no doubt you are experiencing frustration and a mix of other emotions. A priority concern may be how you will provide your child with what they need if the child support payments are not made in full and on time. If you have made attempts in the past to rectify the situation with the other parent to no avail, you may be at wit’s end. Because a child support agreement is a legally binding contract, you may be best served by hiring a family lawyer, like from Scroggins Law Group, PLLC. Having a legal advocate on your side may result in the other parent coming forward with the child support payments that they owe you. If they do not do this then your lawyer can assist you in petitioning the court to force the other parent to comply. That could result in them being charged with a criminal offense and possibly going to jail if they do not conform to the child support agreement that is in place.

Potential Penalties for Non Payment of Child Support

As mentioned, a child support agreement is a legally binding contract. As such, the failure by either party to adhere to the agreement may result in serious consequences, particularly for the parent who is not making their required child support payments. Should the issue be presented to the family law court judge, they may rule that the parent who is not making their payments on time and in full may face any or all of the following consequences:

  • Garnishment of their wages. Every time they are to be paid, a court authorized amount of money will be withdrawn from their wages before they receive their paycheck.
  • Withholding of funds from their income tax refund. The amount of money owed to the other parent may be withheld in part or in full from the refund.
  • The loss of driving privileges. They may lose their driver’s license indefinitely or permanently as decided by the judge.
  • The requirement to pay one or more fines.
  • Incarceration.

The Possibility of Criminal Charges

As a legally binding contract, the non-conformance to a child support agreement could result in jail time if the judge deems it is appropriate. Non-conformance of the agreement automatically puts the parent in contempt of court. Criminal charges must be instigated by the court; they cannot be brought by the custodial parent or their child support lawyer.

Turn to a Child Support Lawyer that Families Trust

A child support lawyer can assist you through this difficult time. They can guide you through the legal process, inform you of your rights and legal options, and help you to obtain the best possible outcome. If court action is necessary, they can assist you with this as well and provide you with the experience and insight that you need. Consider contacting a child support lawyer to help you and your child protect your best interests.

How To Handle a Divorce in Different States

Divorce Attorney

Not everyone is still living in the same household when they decide to get divorced. Some couples don’t even live in the same state anymore! If that’s the situation you’re in, you might wonder how to handle the divorce being in different states. As a divorce attorney in Collin County, TX, from a law firm like Scroggins Law Group can explain, there are some complications to consider, so you should speak with a lawyer about the specifics.

Residency Requirements

Getting a divorce when you and your spouse live in different states will require a look at the residency requirements for the state of at least the spouse who is filing the paperwork. Residency requirements are different by state, but they must be met in order to file. For example, if you live in a state with a six month requirement, it means you have to live in that state for at least six months before you can file for divorce. If you and your spouse both moved out of your home state and are both living in new states, it may take a little longer to get divorced.

Jurisdiction Over the Case

Generally, the state where a spouse files for divorce has jurisdiction over the case. If you end up going to court, you will go to court in the state where the divorce was filed. Keep this in mind if you and your spouse are trying to decide who will file. If your spouse files in another state, you’ll either have to hire a lawyer in that state, or you’ll have to hire a lawyer near you and pay for him or her to travel for legal proceedings. You will also have to pay for your own travel. For these reasons, it might be better to file in your own state.

State Laws

Because the state where the divorce is filed will have jurisdiction over the case, you have to realize those state laws will apply to your divorce. You may want to look at the differences between the two states and how they handle divorce. For example, some states divide property with a 50/50 mindset. Everything is split evenly. In other states, property is divided with a standard of “equitable distribution.” The circumstances of the couple, how they acquired the property and other issues would be considered.

Child custody is also handled differently between states. You should understand how both yours and your spouse’s states handle this situation, as it may be the most important aspect of your divorce.

Contact Your Divorce Lawyer Today

Getting a divorce when you and your spouse live in different states doesn’t have to be difficult, but you should be smart about it. Contact a divorce lawyer today to learn more about it.

How to Prepare Your Children for Divorce

Getting a divorce is never easy, but for some couples, this may be the best option they have. Separating from a spouse is already difficult enough on its own as it is, and when children are factored into the equation, things can often go south quickly. However, there are ways to prepare your children for the separation so things can run as smoothly as possible, not only during the separation but afterward as well. For each child’s sake, it’s imperative to keep the peace between you and your spouse, talk to your children honestly, and make a plan for the aftermath.

First in foremost, keeping the peace with your current spouse is extremely important. No matter what might be the reason for the divorce when children are involved you must remember your spouse is still the other parent. Arguments and fights will only stress the children out, which could result in them blaming themselves for the split. During the divorce process, it is important to ensure that things between you and your spouse remain calm. There are some steps you can take that can beneficial to both you and your child during this hectic time.

These steps include respecting your spouse, being open and honest about the situation, and not arguing in front of the child. Although initially, it may not seem like it, the way you act towards your spouse in front of your children will and does have a direct correlation with the child’s relationship to that specific parent and you as well. It is never wise to put the children in a situation where they feel that they must choose sides between their two parents. Another reason you should be honest with your children is that they will most likely have questions and they will probably be confused. Keeping an open mind and listening to how your children feel and what they have to say can make all the difference. And don’t forget to take into account that children seeing arguments will impact how they feel about the situation in a negative way. 

Moreover, not arguing in front of any children should be a priority. You should talk to your children honestly about the divorce but fighting with your spouse will only do more damage than good. You and your spouse are still the adults in the situation so you must act as such. Before talking to your kids about anything talk to your spouse first. Make sure the two of you are on the same page so when you talk with your children about the situation, they won’t feel the need to pick a side since you and your spouse are already in agreement. By no means does this mean you and your spouse have to agree on everything, but when it comes to discussing matters with your children you must do your best to work together. 

Another factor to take into consideration is the age of your child or children. If they are younger (4-9 years old), then the explanation process will be different than if you had a 10-13-year-old, or a 14-17-year-old. When explaining the divorce to younger children try and keep things in simple terms. The reason why the divorce is taking place may not be a pivotal talking point during the conversation if the children are younger. On the other hand, if the children are already in their teens then the reason why may be more of a talking point. However, no matter the age of the children, you should make sure to tell them it is in no way their fault and that you will still be there to love and support them no matter the circumstance.  

Furthermore, working with your spouse even when the divorce is over is an absolute must. It won’t be easy but when children are involved you cannot simply take your children and leave. Even in the most extreme situations (unless physical harm to you or the children is a possibility). An effort must be made to keep the children in contact with both parents. Kids need to have a relationship with both of their parents, and if one of those relationships suddenly gets severed because of a parental argument during the split the damage done to the children will always be apparent. Things such as trust or abandonment issues can occur, so taking things slow and steady without making rash decisions has to be done. Making a plan with your spouse about meet up times, living situations, and shared visitation are all essential when deciding how things will go on after the divorce. Not only for you and your spouse but again for your children as well. Meeting with a divorce attorney from a law firm like Brandy Austin Law Firm, PLLC could help you and your spouse put these types of arrangements and schedules into place to ensure your child or children have a sense of stability.

Despite any reasons for getting a divorce your children’s happiness and well-being should be your top priority. If done properly children can make it through a parental divorce without being hurt. But this is all up to the parents and the decisions they make. Whether they decide to fight or to work together for the betterment of their children. This is why parents must keep the peace, talk honestly with their children, and make a plan when deciding to split.

How To Receive Pain and Suffering Compensation After a Workplace Injury

Construction Accident Lawyer

When you are injured at work, you are typically entitled to workers’ compensation as workers compensation lawyers, like from Hickey & Turim, SC, can explain. While there are some exceptions, most workers in the United States have this benefit. If you are an independent contractor, maritime worker, domestic worker or agricultural worker, you may not have coverage. You also may not have coverage if you are your employer’s only employee, as businesses with a certain minimum of employees are not required to purchase workers’ compensation.

When one receives workers’ compensation, there are certain benefits he or she is entitled to. This includes coverage for medical costs, lost wages, ongoing care, illnesses and other similar expenses. It does not cover pain and suffering, however, so how can you receive this compensation if you feel you deserve it?

Suing Your Employer

In most cases, when you receive workers’ compensation, you lose the opportunity to sue your employer. There are some instances in which this does not apply. For example, if your employer was breaking a workplace rule, and that resulted in your injury, you might be able to receive workers’ compensation and sue the employer. You might also be able to sue the employer if he or she allowed the horseplay that caused your injury, or if the employer intentionally hurt you.

Suing a Coworker

You might have a chance to sue a coworker for your injury. If the individual was upset with you and decided to attack you, resulting in injury, you might be able to receive workers’ compensation and sue the individual as well. If he or she intentionally broke a rule at work, and that’s what resulted in your injury, you might have a chance to sue him or her for that.

Suing a Third Party

If a third party was somehow involved in your accident, you might be able to sue him or her for pain and suffering. For example, perhaps your injury included a piece of equipment that malfunctioned while you were performing your work duties correctly. You might discover the equipment manufacturer knew about the malfunction, but failed to inform your employer. You could sue that manufacturer for pain and suffering, as well as other damages.

Calling a Lawyer

You may not know where to turn when you are injured on the job, but a workers’ compensation lawyer can help you find some avenues where you can seek compensation. Call a workers’ compensation lawyer today to learn more and to get started with your case.

The Cost of Divorce: What You Need to Know

Personal Injury Lawyer

Divorces have the potential to wreak emotional havoc on a couple, but they can also cause problems financially. Many people on the verge of getting a divorce wonder how much it will cost them by the time the divorce is finalized. The answer is usually never straightforward at the beginning, and every divorce contains different aspects that will affect the final cost. Here are things to carefully look at to better understand how much your divorce may cost.

Time

Depending on the amicability between the two spouses, some divorces can be wrapped up rather quickly and without fuss. Others can take a very long time to settle, and the more complications involved, the longer the case will be dragged out. Of course, time equals money, and the longer you need to hire a lawyer to reach a settlement, the more you’ll pay in the end.

Property and Investments

You may end up paying more to split up shared property and investments between you and your spouse. You may also have to settle debt owed between the two of you, and these matters need to be settled fairly and equally. Sorting this out can take time and cost more.

Trial Versus No Trial

The numbers for the average cost of overall divorce expenses can become skewed by the small few who pay above-average amounts for their divorces. Oftentimes, cases that settle out of court cost less than those that need to go to trial, which is why it is always encouraged to try to find a compromising ground without a court’s intervention. Those who go to court may pay twice as much as those who settle out of court. To give you an idea of overall cost, the median average of a divorce case can fall between $5,000 and $7,000, though some people pay over $10,000 and others less than $5,000 depending on their situation.

Lawyers

The cost for lawyers can vary widely depending on where you live and the experience of your lawyer. On average, many people pay between $200 and $300 per hour for a divorce lawyer. However, in some regions, such as metropolitan areas, the cost can be as high as $400. A more experienced lawyer generally costs more than a less experienced one.

In the end, the cost of your divorce comes down to individual factors. Discussing your case with an attorney can help you estimate how much your divorce may cost and if you should hire legal help.  Contact a local divorce lawyer in New York, NY, like the Kleyman Law Firm to schedule a consultation and discuss your best path forward.

Medical Records – Proving Authenticity and Reasonableness

 

There are typically four distinct elements that a claimant must satisfy for the court to properly admit medical bills into evidence. First, the plaintiff must prove that the offered bills are authentic; second, the plaintiff must prove that the claimed charges are reasonable; and third, the plaintiff must prove that the services reflected on the bills were medically necessary to diagnose and/or treat the claimed injuries, and fourth, the plaintiff must prove that the claimed injuries were caused by the negligent act. See, e.g., McMunn v. Tatum, 237 Va. 558, 568 (1989).   This article will deal with the first two of these requirements.  

 

  1. Authenticity

 

The requirement of authentication or identification as a condition precedent to

admissibility is satisfied by evidence sufficient to support a finding that the thing in

question is what its proponent claims.   “Authentication is merely the process of showing that a document is genuine and that it is what its proponent claims it to be.” Owens v. Commonwealth, 10 Va. App. 309, 311 (1990). “The amount of evidence sufficient to establish authenticity will vary according to the type of writing, and the circumstances attending its admission, but

generally proof of any circumstances which will support a finding that the writing is

genuine will suffice.” Williams v. Commonwealth, 35 Va. App. 545, 556–57 (2001).

 

Generally, “authentication does not set a high barrier to admissibility, and is generally satisfied by any form of proof that supports a finding that it is what it purports to be.”  see  Charles E. Friend & Kent Sinclair, The Law of Evidence in Virginia § 17-1, at 1164 (7th ed. 2012).  Barring unusual circumstances, lay testimony is sufficient to establish authenticity.  

 

  1. Reasonableness of Charges

 

The McMunn Court defined “reasonable charges” in this context as medical billing 

“…not excessive in amount, considering the prevailing costs of such services”. McMunn v. Tatum, 237 Va. 558, 568 (1989).   Whether the claimed bills are reasonable is a question of fact for the jury or the judge in a bench trial. Walters v. Littleton, 223 Va. 446, 452 (1982)

the bills, but only to the fact that he had received them as a consequence of

the accident.

 

In McMunn v. Tatum, the Court made clear that, while not strictly necessary, proof of 

the reasonableness of medical bills proffered into evidence will typically require expert testimony if contested at trial.  The Court held that “where the defendant objects to the introduction of

medical bills, indicating that the defendant’s evidence will raise a substantial contest as to either the question of medical necessity or the question of causal relationship, the court may admit the

challenged medical bills only with foundation expert testimony tending to establish medical necessity or causal relationship, or both, as appropriate.  Id. at 569.  

 

As courts have subsequently made clear, a plaintiff may typically offer medical bills through the plaintiff’s testimony alone if he lays a foundation showing (1) that the bills are regular on their face, and (2) that they appear to relate to treatment, the nature and details of which the plaintiff has explained. If the defendant challenges the authenticity of the bills, they will be insufficient in themselves to create a jury issue, and independent proof of authenticity will be necessary.  This independent proof will most frequently require expert testimony as a medical malpractice lawyer in Arlington, VA, like those at The Law Offices of Ryan Quinn, PLLC can explain.  

 

What a Wrongful Death Lawyer Can Do for You

Wrongful death lawsuits are among the most emotionally draining and difficult lawsuits to file. You’re already dealing with the loss of a loved one, on top of filing a claim. Having a lawyer to rely on can make the process more convenient and allow you more time to heal. Here are three reasons you should hire a wrongful death lawyer.

You Won’t Be Short on Time or Money

Wrongful death lawsuits are time-consuming. Not only do you have to build your defense, but you have to stay up to date on every deadline. You may have to make regular court appearances, you have to file documents with the court, and conduct legal research. If you have a lawyer, you can rely on him or her to do all of that. It frees up time for you to live your life. You can focus on work, family, and on healing without compromising your case. Additionally, it can save you money in the long run. Generally, you do not have upfront costs. A lawyer will typically take a contingency fee at the end.

You’ll Have an Advocate That Understands the Legal Process

If you don’t work in the legal field, you might not have a lot of experience with the legal process, but you don’t have to navigate the complexities on your own. A lawyer’s expertise is invaluable. He or she will know the ins and outs of wrongful death law and the elements that you need to bring to the table to win your case. Also, he or she can keep you on top of all of the deadlines.

You’ll Have Access to Support

Going through the death of a loved one is already a difficult enough time. Even if you know that you deserve to win your case, the context may start to become overwhelming. It’s easy to fall victim to emotion. After all, you’re fighting for someone that you lost. Your lawyer is an objective person who can think clearly and build your case without becoming too emotional. He or she relieves you of the tedious aspects of the case. You can grieve and heal while the lawyer handles your case.

There are several reasons why you should hire a lawyer, like a wrongful death lawyer in Maricopa County, AZ from Saavedra Law Firm, to handle your lawsuit. He or she is there to help guide you through the process, to build your defense and to advocate for you. Find out more by setting up an appointment with a wrongful death lawyer.

As a Whistleblower, Am I Protected?

Employees may not come forward to report something unlawful that their employer has done, out of fear of retaliation or being fired. An employee may think that if the company is willing to knowingly break a law, they may have no problem wrongfully terminating an employee who filed a complaint. In some instances, an employee coming forward is necessary for the health and safety of all who work for the company. Any employee who informs another entity about the illicit activity of a person or organization is called a whistleblower. 

Sadly, some employers may become vengeful and fire whistleblowers for reporting the company or individual. It is important for a worker to know they have rights which can protect them from becoming the victim of employer retaliation, though. 

How are whistleblowers protected?

The majority of states and the federal government have established laws which protect whistleblowers from employer punishment for bringing the incident to light. The purpose of these protection laws is to enable employees to testify, report, or stop an employer that is committing unhealthy, illegal, or other negative actions that violate public policies. 

Are all whistleblower actions covered under state and federal laws?

A commonly debated topic within whistleblower protection laws is what constitutes as a whistleblower activity. Those who have experienced employer retaliation for whistleblowing may want to meet with an attorney as soon as possible to see if you are safeguarded under your state laws. Each state may be different in how they define whistleblower actions. 

Can an employee receive compensation for the retaliation or wrongful termination?

An employee who was a whistleblower and then was wrongfully terminated or retaliated against may have a strong foundation for a lawsuit. Factors of the lawsuit may include statute of limitations, types of recoverable damages, and evidence. An employee may be entitled to financial compensation for employer revenge. 

What are the basic elements of a whistleblower lawsuit? 

An employee who has been impacted by employer retaliation after making a report can meet with an attorney for advice on how to proceed. If the employee decides to take legal action, there are basic components of a whistleblower protection claim. Examples of these factors include, but may not be limited to the following: 

  • The employee participated in or initiated a protected whistleblower activity
  • The employer was aware the employee engaged in such actions
  • The employer was motivated to retaliate, at least in part, by the employee’s whistleblower activity
  • The employee was let go or discriminated against by the employer, in regards to his or her employment conditions, privileges, compensation, or terms
  • The employee can bring forward evidence that he or she would not have suffered such treatment from the employer if the whistleblower conduct did not occur 

Why should an employee seek help from an attorney? 

An attorney can consult with an employee and help him or her complete the necessary paperwork for a lawsuit, in addition to offering representation. It is recommended that any worker who feels they were retaliated against because of whistleblowing reaches out to a lawyer, like a whistleblower retaliation claim lawyer in Washington, DC from Eric Siegel Law, right away for guidance.

Can I recover for mental anguish or psychological harm?

 

It is well settled in that compensation for mental suffering and mental distress may be recovered in a tort action if such suffering is a “natural and probable result” of the tortious act.  Sanford v. Ware, 191 Va. 43, 49 (Va. 1950);  See also Bruce v. Madden, 208 Va. 636, 640 (Va. 1968)  (finding error where a trial court refused to instruct the jury that it may consider mental anguish as an element of damages in a personal injury case).    However, case law makes clear that mental suffering and mental distress are generally recoverable only when Plaintiff also makes a claim for physical injury arising from the tortious act.  

However, case law distinguishes between “hybrid” cases in which mental anguish arises from tortious conduct causing personal injuries and “pure” mental anguish claims where injury arises from a non-physical invasion.  As a general rule, mental anguish is recoverable only when in “hybrid” cases where a physical injury is also present, and is not permissible as a standalone source of recovery.  See, e.g., Fairfax Hospital Sys. v. McCarty, 244 Va. 28, 37 (1992) (mother’s mental anguish from a defective birth not recoverable absent physical injury to mother);  Bowers v. Westvaco Corp., 244 Va. 139, 149 (1992)  (no recover for mental anguish caused by nuisance); Carstensen v. Chrisland Corp., 247 Va. 433, 446,) (“in the absence of physical harm or wanton and willful conduct, emotional distress damages are not recoverable.”).   However, the associated physical injury need not be a significant element of the claim for damages, and need only be a distinct source of Plaintiff’s harm.   Indeed, the Virginia Supreme Court recently reaffirmed the principle that mental anguish forms a proper basis for damages in a tort action even in a case with comparatively minor injuries. See Kondaurov v. Kerdasha, 271 Va. 646, 656 (Va. 2006) (“In the present case, the plaintiff suffered physical injury, albeit remarkably slight under the circumstances, as a proximate result of the defendants’ negligence. Thus, mental anguish could be inferred by the jury and would constitute an element of damages.”).  

Consequently, when asserting a claim for mental anguish and other mental injuries, it is essential to allege associated physical injury as a part of your claim for damages.  Mental injuries can form a substantial aspect of a properly pleaded claim for damages; in fact, in many cases compensable harm from mental injuries far exceeds the harm associated with physical injuries, as an attorney, like a personal injury lawyer in Arlington, VA from The Law Offices of Ryan Quinn, PLLC can explain.