The consequences of driverless cars

Oct 6, 2017 by

Technology has a way of revolutionizing our lives before we’re even aware of it. We all now live on our phones. When did that happen? Sometime after the iPhone first appeared and seemed like a cool gadget to have. At some point along the way, everything was available in the palm of our hands, and now it’s hard to imagine life any other way.

Can you imagine having to wait all day to check your email because you were away from your computer? Can you imagine not getting calls and texts instantaneously? What about only being able to listen to the music in the store or on the radio because you couldn’t carry it with you? And do you remember having to actually bring a camera when you wanted a photo?

Such basic questions show just how different life became very quickly with the smartphone. And not all of that is good. Remember when you used to read books when you were on the bus or train? Remember when you could hold your attention for more than five seconds? Remember when distracted driving wasn’t such a prevalent threat on the road?

Another technology is about to hit us just as hard as the smartphone, and it’s not clear how it will affect us going forward. That technology is the driverless car.

Already, driverless cars are on the road. If you live in certain locations (California or Detroit, for instance), you may have already shared the road with one and not even realized it. Several major companies (Tesla and Google to name just two) are working on cars completely able to drive themselves. Other companies are already introducing some amount of driverless technology into their vehicles. Remember the commercials for the car that stops itself if you start moving into another lane? That’s how it starts.

Exactly where this technology will take us is not clear yet. There could be many benefits. The number of car accidents would go down astronomically, and truck accidents, which are capable of real damage, would probably disappear entirely.

I say disappear entirely because it’s likely the entire career field of truck driving will dry up in the next couple decades. Yes, that quickly. And the results could be both wonderful (no more accidents) and rather tragic (thousands and thousands of more unemployed people).

Whether the driverless car will end up being a net good or a net bad, we can’t know yet. With the technology only just over the horizon, we can see it coming but not its impact. Will people rebel against it, or will it be normalized and become the standard almost overnight just like the iPhone?

One thing is for sure, once cars are driving themselves, there will be nothing to keep us off our phones while we’re on the road.

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Things to Know if You’ve Been in a Truck Accident!

Aug 14, 2017 by

Have you been injured in an accident that involved a truck or 18-wheeler? Truck accidents can differ greatly from regular automobile accidents for a few key reasons. In this article, we will explore some of the major differences between truck wrecks and regular car wrecks and what that means for you when considering legal action.

The main reason 18-wheeler wrecks are often more devastating than simple car crashes is that trucks are much larger than regular commuter vehicles. While the average car weighs around 1-2 tons, commercial trucks can legally weigh up to 80 tons! Trucking accidents can be caused by a variety of things. Williams Kherker law firm lists a few including excessive loads, use of wrong equipment or trailers, improper maintenance of vehicles, improperly balanced loads and expecting drivers to exceed legal speed limits or working hours. Since truck drivers are capable of more destruction in the event of an accident, they are required to have special training and licensing and are typically expected to drive more conservatively to prevent accidents. However, when these accidents do occur, it is important to know what your options are following the incident.

Another way in which truck wrecks differ is in the distribution of liability. In a regular commuter vehicle crash, there might only be two drivers and two insurance companies. However, truck drivers aren’t just individuals; following an accident, they are typically represented by their trucking company. So, in an 18-wheeler accident, for example, there might be two drivers, two insurance companies, the company that hired the trucker and other potentially liable parties. If you have been in a wreck with an 18-wheeler and have sustained any physical or financial damages, it is possible that you are eligible for compensation from any of these other potentially responsible parties. To be certain, you should contact a lawyer to determine your legal options.

Immediately following an accident, you should seek medical attention for any injuries that might have occurred, contact relevant police officials and get witnesses. It is important to get as much information as possible since any of it could be used in your case. While there might be an investigation that is usually undertaken by a relevant official present at the scene of the crash, you should nevertheless keep as much information as you can. There are many things to take care of after an automobile accident which are often very stressful and time-consuming. However, if you decide that you would like to pursue legal action, keep in mind that some claims are time-sensitive and you should act quickly to ensure that you don’t lose access to certain legal opportunities.

If you have been involved in an automobile accident with an 18-wheeler, you might be eligible for legal representation and compensation. Before accepting any settlements or offers by the trucking company and/or its insurance company, you should consider contacting a lawyer to determine if you have a case.

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Tips For Preventing Motorcycle Accidents

May 25, 2016 by

Many people opt for motorcycles because it gives them the enjoyment to ride in the open air as well as cut through traffic. Unfortunately, motorcycle riders are the most prone to accidents and crashes with other larger vehicles. Due to their size and weight, motorcycle accidents are one of the most tragic in history. According to the website of the Cazayoux Ewing Law Firm, catastrophic accidents involving motorcycles are a regular occurrence. To prevent yourself from being part of the statistics, practicing safety is your best bet. Here are some tips on safely riding a motorcycle.

1. Wear a helmet

According to statistics from the National Traffic Safety Administration, for every 100 motorcyclists killed in a crash without a helmet, 37 would have survived if they were wearing a helmet. In most states, it is illegal to ride without a helmet. When considering these safety accessories, make sure that it complies with Department of Transportation standards. Likewise, you should have a spare helmet for your passengers.

2. Drive slowly in intersections and corners

Intersections can be a dangerous area for motorcyclists so always be aware of incoming traffic coming from the side. Slow down when turning a corner so you can react better to the situation. It is wise to use headlamps, even during the day, to signify your intentions. Stay at a safe distance between you and the vehicle in front of you.

3. Stay away from the other driver’s blind spot

The blind zone refers to the area on either side of a vehicle that the driver cannot see even if they use the side or rear view mirrors. Make it a point to turn your head over the shoulder to see if the area is clean prior to switching lanes and turning. Also avoid riding too close to the car ahead of you.

4. Wear visible clothing so that other drivers can see you

Wear bright colored clothes so that you can be visible to other motorists. Wear protective goggles, jacket, full-fingered gloves, long pants, and boots. The clothing should be made from abrasion-resistant material and fit close to the body.

5. Enroll in a motorcycle safety training course

For beginning riders, this can be a good starting point to ensure your safety in the road. However, even if you have been riding the motorcycle for a while, you can always take a refresher course to re-learn the basics as well. The Department of Motor Vehicle provides courses at the start of each season.

When riding a motorcycle, make sure that you are always on the side of caution. With these 5 safety tips, you can rest assured that you will drive your motorcycle for as long as you want.

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Using Bankruptcy to Overcome Unmanageable Debt

Jan 20, 2016 by

Many people consider filing for bankruptcy as among the best choices to deal with debts, but it should be noted that in some types of bankruptcy you might end up losing a significant amount of your property. Aside from choosing which type of bankruptcy best suits your circumstances, marriage or divorce should also be considered and examined since they can greatly affect the outcome of the bankruptcy. In order to secure your joint finances, the website of the Fayetteville bankruptcy lawyers of the Bradford Law Offices, PLLC says that it is a important to get yourself acquainted with the necessary information to better equip yourself for the long and meticulous process ahead.

The first thing to understand marital bankruptcy is that the debts incurred bearing the names of both spouses are the only ones that will be considered in a joint bankruptcy case. There are a lot of misconceptions that make people think that both spouses are automatically liable for the debts they acquired. If you and your spouse have filed for bankruptcy, the only debts that the court will address are those that bear both of your signatures. Any debts that one spouse on their own before the marriage and even after marriage (provided that they alone are the signatory) are not legally shared and will be his or her own responsibility.

If one spouse, such as the husband, files for bankruptcy and the debt is jointly held by both spouses, only the husband’s debt will be discharged; the wife will still have the legal responsibility of paying off her part of the debt. The bottom line is – any debt you incur will be your own responsibility. If you file for a bankruptcy on a joint debt, you will end up turning over the responsibility of paying for the debt to your spouse. If one spouse files for bankruptcy, the other spouse’ personal assets and properties are beyond the bankruptcy trustee’s jurisdiction and will not become part of the bankruptcy estate of the spouse who file the case. This is the reason why it is better to file a joint bankruptcy case rather than on your own or separately.

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Car and Truck Accidents

Nov 17, 2015 by

Data in the United States Census Bureau shows that automobile accidents are an all-too-frequent issue in the USA. According to a report printed in 2012, an average of 10.6 million injuries was documented annually between the years 2005 and 2009. In another record, the CDC Injury-Prevention and Control report that vehicular accidents are among the best causes of injuries in America. As the Williams Kherkher website says, automobile accidents often lead to impacts that may be very difficult to take care of. Restricting these amounts should stay important.

Among the most serious injuries that occur in American highways and streets are crashes involving large trucks that are commercial. About 500,000 trucking accidents occur in the country every year. These mishaps are estimated to cause around and some fatalities 5,000 that were. 130,000 significant harms The most common form of injuries including large autos like semis, semi- tractor-trailers trucks, and 18-wheelers contain under-ride accidents, overloading, and no-zoom injuries.

While truck injuries cause notably more harmful accidents when compared with other automobiles, it is disingenuous to completely assume that injuries including other varieties like cars and motorbikes don’t lead to similarly disastrous outcomes. Crashes between passenger vehicles that are routine may lead to very severe injuries, especially if the driver at fault has been found to be below the influence of alcohol or a controlled substance. Meanwhile, bike accidents can cause back injuries, amputation, or brain injury. Pedestrians are also in danger of road conditions and dangerous driving practices.

All individuals must take specific precautions, to stop car mishaps. Drivers must not be unaware that the road is being shared by them with other people and any careless or negligent error can lead to a collision that might set their lives in harm’s way.

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Do We Need a Prenup? The Advantages of a Premarital Arrangement

May 5, 2015 by

Marriage is often considered a monumental step. After all, the decision to spend your life with another person is not something to be taken lightly. It’s extremely important to know whether you and your partner are on the same page about the most fundamental and essential things. As such, couples who are deciding to get married can’t do it in a heartbeat. There are several considerations to discuss and be made among each other. One way these considerations can be laid out and become legally binding is through a premarital arrangement.

A premarital arrangement, also popularly known as a ‘prenup’ or a ‘prenuptial arrangement’, refers to a legal document that serves as a contract between a couple who is about to be married. The contract details a list of each couple’s properties, assets, and debts, as well as specific agreements about financial decisions to be made in the event that the marriage will end (either by separation, divorce, or death of a spouse). These financial decisions include items on issues like property distribution and death benefits.

Creating a premarital arrangement is a necessary step during a couple’s engagement because of the many advantages it can bring. For one, signing a premarital contract ensures the financial stability of each couple. It can also protect any children the couple may have financially. Both parties can rest assured that neither of them nor their children will face any financial difficulties should a death occur or should they decide to walk away from their union. In the event of a divorce, having a premarital arrangement can also ease any tension or conflict that usually stems from such an emotionally stressful time.

According to the website of Arenson Law Group, PC, a prenuptial agreement is a legally binding contract, a premarital arrangement will be subject to the decision of the court. It will be up to a judge to decide if the clauses stipulated in the premarital contract is valid and reasonable. Because of this, drafting an arrangement on your own can be difficult and arduous and the hiring of a skilled lawyer is highly recommended.

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Zofran: Can It Cause Birth Defects?

Feb 1, 2015 by

Many claim it to be the miracle drug but there is new, current evidence that links Zofran to not be all it’s cracked up to be as it might have some very serious side effects.

Zofran, also known as ondansetron, is a popular anti-nausea drug that is known to work quickly and effectively. There are some complaints of migraines, fatigue, and constipation (to name a few) as some of the more common side effects but many will claim that this kind of pain is a small price to pay in order to get some relief from nausea. Cancer patients who are being treated via either chemotherapy or radiation often experience nausea as a side effect of the treatment. Pregnant women also suffer from severe morning sickness are also often prescribed this medication in order to alleviate them of nausea – and that is where it can get complicated.

Citing the website of Williams Kherkher, there has been new evidence that links Zofran, though approved by the FDA, as the primary cause of some birth defects such as congenital heart defect or cleft lip and palate, if a fetus is exposed to the aforementioned drug during the early stages of development. These are serious medical concerns that often require surgical correction – procedures of which most families are not always ready to shoulder financially, causing further strain and stress upon everyone involved.

If you or someone you know believes that a birth defect caused by Zofran is causing further problems, it is advisable that legal aid is acquired immediately. One of the leading reasons of death via birth defects is heart defects and so these must be exercised with a certain amount of urgency. In order for this case to be treated and represented efficiently, the attorneys you bring in to be involved with the case should already be knowledgeable in this branch of the law as well as confident with maneuvering in the field of medicine.

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The Various Chapters in the Bankruptcy Code

Oct 31, 2014 by

The 1.53 million Americans who filed personal bankruptcies in 2010 is a clear indication of the economic predicament suffered by many individuals and families in the US. Besides loss of job, which is a direct effect of poor economy, an accident or illness requiring medical treatment (which has also become too costly), divorce, and other events have contributed to diverting all funds to basic needs rather than to paying monthly bills. The downside of this, though, is accumulation of debts that later become quite impossible to settle.

To protect their interests, creditors usually refer bad debts (debts that have not been paid for at least three consecutive months) to collection firms which, in turn, employ harassing tactics to force the debtors to pay.

Suffering from overwhelming debts, however, is never the total ruin of an individual’s or a business’ financial future. The website of Ryan Ruehle imparts the very important fact that debtors can turn to the law to get out of a debt crisis and regain financial stability again. This can be through bankruptcy or debt negotiation.

The US Bankruptcy Code contains chapters designed to save debtors from debts that have become quite impossible to manage. Each chapter is meant to address debtors’ specific financial situation, and basically aimed at eradicating all forms of debts for the individual’s or business’ fresh financial start. The Code offers:

  • Chapter 7 Bankruptcy – a liquidation bankruptcy wherein a court-appointed trustee sells some of the “non-exempt” assets and properties surrendered by the debtor (there are exempt properties, like the home, which the debtor can keep and protect). The proceeds from the sale are distributed to the creditors and the remaining amount (if there is any) will be returned to the owner.

The debts to be paid in this chapter are the non-dischargeable debts (usually government-related debts). Debts from which the court can decide to free the debtor can include credit card bills, medical bills, past utility bills, personal loans, and so forth.

  • Chapter 11 or Business Bankruptcy – allows the business firm to either restructure its finances (repayment plan) for more affordable payments, or liquidate some of its properties to be able to pay creditors. Unlike in chapter 7, wherein a business will have to cease operations, chapter 11 allows a firm to stay in business.
  • Chapter 12 Bankruptcy – is designed for family farmers and family fishermen which should have a regular annual income to be considered eligible under this law. which own and operate the fishing or farming business; which own at least 50% of the farming/fishing business; and, which earns a regular annual income.
  • Chapter 13 Bankruptcy – which is reorganization or restructuring bankruptcy, requires debtors to design a debt payment scheme spanning to three years (can be five years if the court so allows). Under this chapter, all of the debtor’s properties are saved or never sold.

A realistic and objective assessment of a debtor’s financial condition is required regardless of the chapter of bankruptcy the debtor wishes to file. Making sure, therefore, that the lawyer, who will be hired to defend the rights and interests of debtors, is very significant.

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How To Successfully Find And Work With A Lawyer

Aug 25, 2014 by

Do you have to go to court? If so, then you should understand that being prepared is the key to success. This includes finding and working with the best lawyer for your needs. Read the below article for some helpful tips on locating great lawyers to ensure that you win your case.

When you are describing the situation that you are in to your lawyer, refrain from lying. You should be telling them the truth at all times, as this could backfire if you are questioned on the stand and your lawyer does not have all information available. Honesty is the best policy, especially in regards to legal issues.

Real estate lawyers are extremely helpful in legal situations involving real estate, such as buying or selling a home, renting, or lawsuits involving any of these subjects. This will help ensure that you get a favorable ruling each and every time. By the same token, a personal injury lawyer, such as those at Pohl & Berk, would be most helpful if you’re hurt in an accident.

Don’t assume that a specialist lawyer is more expensive than a general practitioner. While a specialist might indeed have a higher hourly rate, they might charge you for less overall hours. A specialist will not need to spend as much time learning and researching laws regarding a case that a general practitioner would.

If you have been in an accident, do not hire any lawyer that comes to you and tries to solicit your business. This is not only unethical, but it is against the law. You do not want to hire anyone to handle your legal case if you have to worry about their legal ethics.

As you can see, the importance of finding the right lawyer is crucial for your success in court. Do not settle for mediocrity, especially when it comes to court. Arm yourself with the best lawyer that you can. Now that you have read this article, you should be able to do this. Good luck!

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Consumer Facts on Vehicle Theft Prevention

Mar 15, 2014 by

The National Highway Traffic Safety Association (NHTSA) reports that one motor vehicle is stolen every 44 seconds. That figure adds up to more than 70,000 stolen vehicles per year, and only a little more than half are ever recovered. However, about half of vehicle thefts can be traced to the owners’ carelessness. Following a few simple guidelines about staying more alert about what you do with and leave in your car can help lower its risk of being stolen:

When you park, check to be sure the windows are rolled all the way up and lock the doors before you walk away. If it’s dark outside, try to park in an area that is well-lit or in plain view of a security camera. If you have a garage, make room in it for your car – that’s what it’s for!

Always keep your car keys with you. Leaving keys in the car or leaving the car running and then walking away to where you can’t see it invites trouble. Similarly, leaving valuable items such as GPS devices, phones, and purses where people can spot them in your car is unwise. If you need to leave items behind, then lock them in the glove compartment or trunk.

Finally, be sure that your vehicle is equipped with an anti-theft device. Insurance companies take the likelihood of your car being stolen when calculating premiums, and some will give you a discount if such a system is installed.

According to the website of the Law Offices of Mark T. Lassiter in Dallas, when an individual steals an automobile, the crime is called “grand theft auto.” This is a very serious crime that can carry real and harsh consequences if the car thief is captured and convicted. Oftentimes, car thieves manage to escape uncaught, meaning if your car is stolen, you may not ever see it again.

Take the necessary steps to prevent this type of crime, and don’t give car thieves a reason to make you a victim. Most insurance won’t cover your vehicle in the event of a theft, so it can be incredibly damaging to lose a car through someone else’s selfish actions.

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