Adopting A Child In North Carolina

A married couple that is unable to have kids in their own might contemplate adopting a kid the best thing that is next. Nevertheless, it is not a simple or straightforward approach; it’s not like buying up a puppy in the pet store. You can find the delivery parents but also guidelines in place that are built to safeguard the rights, not just of the little one. But inside the laws and because there are numerous, it can get fairly easy to wander off while in the forest and fall into quicksand.

Within an excellent planet, a pregnant woman who is not able to look after the unborn kid can give it up for ownership so someone who has a better potential for giving a great life for that kid can do so. The kid may mature healthful and properly, and everybody goes home content.

Nonetheless, more regularly than not really a snag happens to clog the works up. The birth mother may adjust her intellect right after pregnancy or his custodial rights may be asserted by the birth dad simply prior to the grace period ends, or as it happens that the adoptive parents do not qualify under state adoption guidelines.

According to the website of a Raleigh family lawyer, in the state of North Carolina, this is embodied inside the North Carolina General Laws (Chapter 48) which endeavors to provide brief advice for your judicial method that’ll smoothen the way in which to get a clear, ultimate ownership. Under the law, like parents may be held accountable for a few expenditures of childbirth but only up to specified restriction, hence the birthmother can’t officially need more than that.

Hit and Run Accidents: What You Need to Know

Hit and run accidents are one of the most prevalent problems in roads and highways all over America. Car accidents where the party at fault escapes from the site of the crash are disturbingly rising in the last few years. According to the NHTSA, hit and run accidents have cause 1,449 fatalities in the year 2011 alone. In the previous year, there have been 1,393 fatalities caused by hit and run accidents.

Considering these numbers, there’s no way to skirt around the fact that hit and run accidents are a serious issue. Victims who do survive such a crash often end up suffering from severe injuries and other long-term consequences. Aside from undergoing a long and grueling period of recovery, these victims will also have to with any emotional and psychological effects caused by their trauma. On top of everything else, they will also have to make sense of financial difficulties caused by medical expenses and lost income opportunities.

Any individual involved in a car accident is left to deal with many devastating scenarios in the aftermath of the incident. The same is true for those who have been victimized by hit and run accidents, particularly because they are left to deal with the aftermath of the incident with no assistance from the other party involved in the crash. However, the real challenge for victims involved in such accidents is being able to hold the responsible party accountable for his or her actions. In most cases, they are robbed of a chance to receive closure and pursue justice for the suffering they’ve incurred due to another person’s negligent behavior.

Click here to for tips on what to do if you are involved in a hit and run accident.

How Employers Can Reduce the Risk of Toxic Exposure in the Workplace

Workers in industries like manufacturing, construction, and mining face plenty of risks compared to most employees. Among these risks include toxic exposure. Most of the time, jobs in these fields require workers to deal with hazardous chemicals and substances. Unfortunately, their constant and prolonged exposure to these dangerous materials could pose serious risks to their health. Without proper regulation, the toxic chemicals commonly used high-risk industries could cause a worker to suffer from a lifelong medical condition.

According to the website of Houston personal injury lawyers of Ali Mokaram, toxic chemical exposure could lead to some of the most devastating diseases such as cancer (particularly leukemia and mesothelioma), Hodgkin’s disease and aplastic anemia. The damning effects of toxic exposure will require a lot of medical attention that could bring huge financial burden. There’s also emotional trauma and other psychological effects to account for. Considering these consequences, it’s important that employers prioritize and ensure a safe working environment for their valued workers.

The following are just some of the few suggestions made by the Department of Labor, through Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OHSA), to help reduce the risk of toxic chemical exposure in workplaces across America.

The first, most simple solution for chemical hazards is the use of proper protective gear. However, OHSA also emphasizes that such requirements are not enough. They suggest that employers should aim to improve the processes in the workplace by updating administrative and work procedures. For example, imposing a rule on rotating tasks or adjusting work schedules can help make sure that no employee is exposed to a hazardous material for too long.

Another suggestion is making significant changes in engineering controls that could help contain toxic chemicals involved in the work process. An example OHSA offers is the isolation of the use of hazardous materials in a particular area in the venue. Still, they emphasize that the best recourse is to find alternative materials that are much safer to use.

Auto Accident: Hit & Run Accidents

For the past 10 years, continued increases in the yearly number of hit-and-run cases have been a major concern, especially for the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Based on NHTSA records, reports of hit-and-run cases from 2009 to 2011 have risen from 1,274 to 1,449, respectively.

Hit-and-run, also called skipping and fleeing an accident scene, leaving the scene or hit and skip, is a guilty driver’s act of speeding away from the scene of an accident without leaving any clues regarding his or her identification, so as to avoid responsibility over anyone he/she has injured or any property he/she has damaged.

Certain studies show that pedestrian accidents are usually the fault of the pedestrian and not the driver; however, leaving the scene without rendering aid to the injured and not accepting responsibility for the accident will render the fleeing driver guilty of crime, which can be as serious as felony hit-and-run.

In accidents where properties get damaged or individuals are injured or killed, state traffic laws require that the involved drivers stop and exchange identification and contact details (in the event that the accident is fatal then the other driver involved will need to contact authorities and wait for them to arrive at the scene).

Driving away from an accident scene can result in the following legal consequences:

  • Suspension or cancellation of driver’s license (the permanent cancellation of license is imposed in some states)
  • Imprisonment and costly fines
  • Voiding of the offender’s insurance policy (by his or her insurance provider)

Filing a tort lawsuit against the guilty driver (for the purpose of pursuing justice and, possibly, compensation), will definitely be hard due to the lack of identification of the guilty party. Besides, statute of limitation imposed by states in the filing of cases is usually two years (there have been cases, however, wherein the 2-year statute of limitation was overlooked due to the act of the guilty driver in hiding or disposing of any sign of evidence that will trace the accident to him/her).

Seeking the help of highly-skilled hit-and-run accident lawyers will definitely help the victim and his/her family in pursuing the case and fighting for the victim’s rights. Legal assistance can also help the victim seek the compensation needed from his/her insurance provider.

Auto Accident Due to Driving Errors

Two basic, yet very important, requirements when driving an automobile are complete focus on the road and observance of traffic rules. Though the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) identifies drunk-driving, overspeeding, reckless driving and cell phone use, while behind the wheel, as the top four causes of auto accidents, there is another continuously puts other drivers’ and pedestrians’ lives in danger: driver error.

A few kinds of errors that drivers usually commit include:

  • Failure to observe traffic signals
  • Failure to keep their vehicle in good driving condition
  • Failure to adjust their driving to inclement weather
  • Making turns at fast speeds.

There are also many other errors that drivers are guilty of committing, like taking sudden lane changes without first checking for incoming vehicles, failure to yield, right-of-way violations, improper overtaking, allowing themselves to be distracted, tailgating or driving too closely behind another vehicle (the effect of this can be worse if the vehicle a person would tailgate is an 18-wheeler truck), and so forth.

The consequences of a driving accident are damage to property and (sometimes) physical injuries, the severity of which depends on the sizes of the vehicles involved and their respective speeds prior to collision. A collision usually occurs at intersections and its causes are very often due to one driver trying to beat the red light or failing to use traffic signals, thus, misleading other motorists regarding the direction he/she intends to drive his/her vehicle to.

For driver error to be a cause of road accidents is quite surprising due to the fact that, prior to earning a driver’s license, applicant drivers are required to attend a driving school, given a driving manual and asked to know its contents and required to pass written tests and an actual driving test. Having gone through all these, a driver does not any excuse, therefore, in failing to observe road traffic safety. And, since errors usually happen due to negligence, the law requires liable parties to compensate innocent victims for the present and future damages these will suffer from

Racial Discrimination in the Workplace: How to File a Charge

Any form of discrimination in all aspects of employment, which include hiring and firing, promotion, transfer, recall back to work, wages, fringe benefits, job training, apprenticeship programs, etc., whether such is based on race, color, sex, religion, or national origin, is prohibited by Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

Discrimination in the workplace continues to be a major concern for both the federal and local governments, with non-whites being the major victims. This was made a fact after two different studies (on the chances of individuals with black-sounding names on finding employment) ended with the same results – that job applicants with white-sounding names (American names, specifically) had higher chances of getting employed compared to those with African-American-sounding names, often despite the obvious advantages of the latter in areas relating to educational qualification, job specification expertise and experience). The first study was conducted by the National Bureau of Economic Research in Cambridge, Massachusetts, while the other, which was made a few years later, was made by Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s (MIT’s) Sendhil Mullainathan and Economics Professor Marianne Bertrand from the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business.

The studies further revealed that, if ever African-Americans get invited for a job interview, diction, vocabulary and accent, especially, become major barriers to job entry. Obviously, accent creates bias among many employers or managers who suppose that pronunciation is enough to accurately determine an applicant’s educational qualification, level of intelligence, character, social status, etc. An English accent, however, is deemed as exuding intelligence, regardless of the content of what is said, thus, many try to adopt it.

Being a non-white may just be at the periphery of racial discrimination, though, for if the applicant or the employee happens to be such, as well as 40 or above years old, has a disability, a lesbian, homosexual, bisexual or transgender or, in the case of females, pregnant (or expecting to be pregnant soon), despite being definitely qualified for the job, then the chances of ever finding employment or of being treated fairly can be nil. This is why amendments to Title VII of the Civil Rights Act were made and additional laws were passed to recognize the competitive service non-whites are capable of providing. These amendments and laws include the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) of 1967, Title I and Title V of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, and the broadening of the scope of anti-sex discrimination, extending its protection to lesbians, gays and bisexuals (on July 1, 2011) and then to the transgender (on April 20, 2012). These amendments and laws also resulted to strict prohibition of job advertisements, use of company facilities, testing, disability leave and retirement plans which would imply discrimination.

Despite national and state laws, many companies remain guilty of discriminatory practices, probably either due to the subtle means through which they do it or because victims rather choose to remain silent for fear of getting into further trouble. Those who are determined to fight for their rights (or fight for another victim’s rights), though, are highly encouraged by the law; they can file their discrimination charge, personally or by mail, at the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) office nearest them (complainants are required by the law to file their charges with the EEOC first before filing a private lawsuit in court).

When filing a complaint, it is necessary to mention the specific discriminatory acts, the dates these have been committed, the complaining party’s and the respondent employer’s names, addresses, and contact numbers, and the identities of co-employees who have knowledge of the violations. Complainants are given up to 180 days, from the date of the alleged violation/s, to file their charges. If the violation committed is also covered by a local or state anti-discrimination law, then the statute of limitation (or filing period) is extended up to 300 days.

Filing a discrimination charge can be stressful to the victim, but so is remaining silent while being the target of unjust acts which others may also be suffering from or may also suffer from in the future. Finding the right legal advice and knowing what legal options victims have would be crucial during the period when they will need to evaluate what move to take.

Some information for this article was found on

Cocaine: A Schedule II Drug

Being convicted of a drug-related offense can affect a person’s professional goals and future as the damaging effects of a crime goes well beyond any courtroom and much longer than any jail term. A drug crime includes manufacture, sale, distribution, possession and use of banned drugs and drug paraphernalia, such as heroin, marijuana (cannabis), 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (ecstasy), lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD), methamphetamine, and cocaine. Cocaine, specifically, is the second most widely used illegal drug in the US (marijuana is the first). It has been classified by the US Controlled Substances Act (CSA) as a Schedule II drug, a drug that has a high potential for abuse, though doctors may administer it for certain medical reasons. (The CSA, which is Title II of the Comprehensive Drug Abuse Prevention and Control Act, was signed by the US Congress into law in 1970; this federal drug policy aims to regulate the importation, manufacture, possession, distribution and use of different substances.) The widespread use of cocaine in the US happened during the latter part of the 1800s, becoming a common use among factory, rail road and textile mill workers for continuous or increased productivity, especially despite extended hours of work. This highly addictive and powerful stimulant is still used by many high-earning employees today, earning for itself the name, “rich man’s drug.” However, even college students and young adults use it as a “party drug” to help them stay awake throughout any cheerful social gathering. Cocaine’s addictive effects only make users take it more frequently, the amount increasing on each use. Individuals charged with possession of this illegal drug are bound to suffer the heavy punishments stipulated in the United States Code (USC) of Controlled Substances Act, such as:

  • Maximum of 12 months imprisonment plus up to a $1,000 fine (for first time offenders);
  • Maximum of 24 months imprisonment plus up to a $2,500 fine (for second time offenders); or,
  • Maximum of 36 months imprisonment plus up to a $5,000 fine of, at least, $5,000 (for third time offenders).

Sellers and/or distributors of cocaine are made to pay higher fines and given longer jail terms, especially if the activity involving this drug is linked to an injury or death. Whether a person calls it coke, dust, toot, white dragon, uptown, or charlie, a cocaine-related crime remains a very serious offense that requires a really strong defense from an experienced and knowledgeable lawyer.

Being Hurt due to Poor Road Conditions

For the unwary driver, it may be complicated to determine who they can sue when poor road conditions causes their car accident. There are several factors that come into play when a car accident occurred because of poor road conditions. First, a plaintiff should be able to prove that the road condition was what caused the accident, and that the entity that is responsible for ensuring the safety of the road was negligent in their duty. Lastly, there are agencies that are immune from lawsuits, therefore the plaintiff must check whether the agency whose duty is to maintain the road conditions can be sued.

First, the plaintiff has to determine who is responsible for taking care of the roads, and if they can be sued in court. Roads are maintained by the county, state, and cities. If you have determined who was negligent in their duty to ensure road safety, consulting with a personal injury or car accident lawyer can help determine whether the liable party can be sued. Most government agencies have immunity when it comes to lawsuits, but they do make exemptions and permit themselves to be sued for specific conditions.

If the plaintiff is able to prove that the government agency responsible for the maintenance of the road has been “grossly negligent” in their duty, or if the municipality has an insurance coverage for that particular lawsuit, then the plaintiff can sue the government agency. It is important, however, to ensure that the lawsuit is field in accordance to the statute of limitations of the state, and these can vary from 6 months to 2 years, depending on the type of accident and the state where the accident occurred.

Another important factor to look into is the proof of negligence of the government agency involved. It is the plaintiff’s responsibility to prove in court that the government agency could have and should have maintained the safety of the roads but have chosen not to, which eventually leads to the plaintiff’s car accident and injuries.

Lastly, the plaintiff should provide substantial evidence to prove that the poor road conditions were what really caused the accident and the injuries. Plaintiff testimonials may not be enough to prove the gross negligence of the government agency involved. Police reports, witness testimonies, and other evidence that would prove how the damage and injuries occurred would help in ensuring that the car accident lawsuit will have a positive result.

Pain and Suffering Damages for Nursing Home Abuse

Pain and suffering is something that a resident who is a victim of nursing home abuse will certainly be entitled to. Nursing home residents are among the most vulnerable segments of society, and it isn’t right that they should be exposed to the cruelty or negligence of people who owe them a high duty of care. But damages for pain and suffering are not easily quantifiable, and can be difficult to prove.

As many personal injury lawyers would agree, proving negligence in court requires hard evidence that the plaintiff suffered significant harm because of the actions, or failure to act, of a third party. In nursing home abuse, the easiest cases would be that which leave a paper trail, such as medical records of injuries.

However, abuse it is not always physically manifested because the abuse may not be physical. As mentioned on the website of the law firm Karlin, Fleisher & Falkenberg, LLC, the harm that a resident suffers from verbal or psychological abuse can be as much or even more damaging to someone who may already be mentally fragile, and certainly warrants consideration for pain and suffering.

It is estimated that as many as one in three nursing homes have incidents of abuse or neglect. Some facilities cited for this negligence claim that staff shortages may have contributed to incidents of neglect where residents suffered injuries such as bed sores or falls. Texas, which was named as the worst state for nursing homes according to the 2013 report of the Families for Better Care, failed in 6 of 8 categories under federal quality statistical measures for nursing homes. A Wisconsin nursing home abuse lawyer would most likely cite one or more of these measures in a nursing home abuse case. Tennessee didn’t fare much better, ranking 13th as the worst nursing home state.

Unfortunately, many cases of nursing home abuse go unreported. If you suspect an elderly loved one to be suffering from nursing home abuse, take the necessary steps to secure their future well-being and compensation for past and ongoing abuse. Consult with a nursing home abuse lawyer to find out your legal options.

Pain and Suffering in Car Accidents

There are many phrases that make their way to common lexicon without most people understanding what they actually mean. One of these phrases is “pain and suffering” in reference to tort law, and most people consider it the gravy in a personal injury case. However, pain and suffering which is part and parcel of “non-economic” damages, are not always applicable, especially when there was no actual physical injury involved. A good example would be a lawsuit alleging emotional damages i.e. invasion of privacy, where an award for pain and suffering would not likely to be awarded unless the actor’s conduct was outrageously excessive.

A Dallas personal injury lawyer can certainly demand compensation for a client’s pain and suffering, and depending on the circumstances of the case, this can be quite considerable. However, when it comes to medical malpractice suits, there is a cap ranging from $250,000 to $500,000. Where a case falls will depend on several factors, which may have different weights for different states, but which generally include:

  • Degree of severity, resulting in permanent or long-term disability and/or pain
  • Plaintiff’s age, where younger victims tend to get larger awards for having to endure longer periods of debilitation than older subjects
  • Intensity of suffering at the time of the accident and subsequent recovery

Because non-economic damages cannot be quantified in a standard manner, a jury is typically tasked to come up with a reasonable award given the circumstances of the case. Most people involved in something like car accidents are more likely to sustain severe injuries that would warrant compensation for pain and suffering. A South Carolina car accident lawyer can seek the maximum $750,000 allowed under state law, or even $1M if the injury resulted in the amputation of a limb, traumatic head or spine injury, or severe burns. Unlike Texas, though, the cap on non-economic damages applies to most personal injury cases in Tennessee, not just medical malpractice cases.