Houston Personal Injury Claims

Truck, Car, or Motorcycle Accident: Do you know who to Call in Houston ?

With more vehicles in on the roads than ever before, it is no surprise that truck accidents are on the rise. The latest figures from the U.S. Department of Transportation tell us that there are around 500,000 incidents each year in America. Because cargo vehicles are much larger and heavier than regular passenger vehicles, the risk of a serious collision is much higher when these potentially lethal giants are involved.

Trucks are hugely important to the Houston economy. According to the American Trucking Associations (ATA), trucks transport nearly 70 percent of the nation’s freight tonnage. To move that amount of cargo, millions of trucks travel billions of miles on American roads every year. Accidents are an inevitable consequence of all that activity.

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With more than two million licensed truckers in America, accidents are bound to happen. Since the vehicles these truckers operate are much bigger and heavier than passenger vehicles, the chances of a minor fender bender are nearly nonexistent. As a result, occupants are almost always injured when an 18-wheeler is involved, greatly increasing the likelihood of a lawsuit.

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As complicated as car-crash cases can be, they don’t hold a candle to cases involving tractor-trailers. Because of the numerous rules and regulations as well as specific state laws that govern trucking, drivers should always contact an 18-wheeler accident attorney if they were involved in a crash. Even if you weren’t the one responsible for an incident, you should still seek legal advice. Why?

Does Size Matter?

When a regular passenger vehicle is involved in a crash, size and weight are rarely important. However, because of their enormous proportions, all tractor-trailers must comply with strict safety regulations and industry standards. There are also specific state laws that all operators must observe. In other words, you may be held responsible for a crash even if it wasn’t, strictly speaking, your fault.

Building A Defense

The average car collision case, which is relatively simple and straightforward, involves witness testimony and police reports. By comparison, a collision involving a tractor-trailer often requires accident reconstruction. To do so, a reputable 18-wheeler accident attorney must hire and work with specialists who can recreate the crash based on the evidence. Since most personal injury lawyers have little or no experience with this process, it is important to find an attorney that specializes in 18-wheeler cases.

Don’t Delay

As good as they are at collecting evidence at a crash scene, the police may miss information that is relevant to a court case. An experienced 18-wheeler accident attorney not only relies on information collected by the authorities, he also orders his own investigation. The results of these investigations are almost always more accurate and effective when they are launched soon after the crash occurs. As time passes, it may be impossible for their team to collect evidence that could strengthen your defense.

To ensure effective representation, it is imperative that you contact an Houston experienced attorney as soon as possible after the crash.

What Causes Chronic Bronchitis?

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Peritoneal mesothelioma is a disease that affects the lining of the abdomen, or peritoneum. Like the other types of mesothelioma, it is caused by exposure to asbestos, which has been widely used in many industrial products, such as cement, brake linings, roof shingles, flooring products, textiles, and insulation. The peritoneal form of mesothelioma is a relatively uncommon type of cancer that accounts for less than a quarter of all mesothelioma cases. Like other forms of the disease, it is inconspicuous until decades after asbestos exposure.

Typical symptoms of peritoneal mesothelioma include abdominal pains, weakness, weight loss, loss of appetite, nausea, and abdominal swelling. Because these symptoms are so common, and may be attributed to numerous ailments other than mesothelioma, diagnosis is often delayed until it is too late for treatment to do much more than help the patient feel more comfortable.

A Non-Contested Divorce: Do It Yourself?

Mediation is a dispute resolution process in which an impartial third party - the mediator - facilitates negotiations among the parties to help them reach a mutually acceptable settlement. The mediator does not make a decision about the outcome of the case. The parties work toward a solution with which they are comfortable.

Couples who seek divorce mediation in New Jersey need to be aware of the NJ mediation program, which was developed by the Supreme Court. Mediators participating in the program have been approved for inclusion on a roster by a subcommittee of the Committee on Complementary Dispute Resolution, after meeting training requirements set forth by the Court.

In order to file for a divorce in New Jersey, either spouse must have been a resident of the State for at least one year prior to the filing of the action. The only exception to the one-year residency requirement is when the grounds for divorce are for adultery. In cases of adultery the requirement is that at least one spouse must be a New Jersey resident. In New Jersey there are eight grounds or causes to file for divorce. The three most popular grounds are extreme cruelty, no-fault separation, and adultery. Remember, the grounds of extreme cruelty are just a "term of art" and it does not mean that your spouse was extremely cruel.

No-Fault Divorce Cause of Action

Separation is New Jersey's only no-fault ground for divorce. To qualify under this grounds, both the husband and wife must have lived separately, in different houses (not only different rooms) for a period of at least eighteen consecutive months. Moreover, in order to qualify for the no fault divorce, there must not be a reasonable expectation of reconciliation.

FAULT DIVORCE CAUSES OF ACTION

Extreme Cruelty

Extreme cruelty includes any physical or mental cruelty which makes it improper or unreasonable to expect that individual to cohabitate with their spouse. N.J.S.A. 2A:34-2(c). The courts are very liberal as to what type of conduct constitutes extreme cruelty.

Adultery

The courts have held that "adultery exists when one spouse rejects the other by entering into a personal intimate relationship with any other person, irrespective of the specific sexual acts performed; the rejection of the spouse coupled with out-of-marriage intimacy constitutes adultery." New Jersey Court Rule 5:4-2 requires that the plaintiff in an adultery divorce case, state the name of the person with whom the offending conduct was committed. This person is known as the correspondent. If the name is not known, the person who files must give as much information as possible tending to describe the adulterer.

Desertion

The willful and continuous desertion by one party for a period of twelve or more months, and satisfactory proof that the parties have ceased to cohabit as man and wife constitutes desertion under N.J.S.A. 2A:34-2(b). It is important to note that the parties may live in the same house. The crucial element here is "as man and wife." Thus, desertion may be claimed after twelve or more months of a lack of sexual relations.

The discovery part of a divorce case is in many cases the most important part of the divorce. The purpose of discovery is to enable the parties to ascertain what assets each party has, and what constitutes the marital estate.

New Jersey Court Rule 5:5-1 allows for discovery including interrogatories, depositions, production of documents, requests for admissions, and copies of documents. The time lines for conducting discovery are held at the Case Management Conference. Discovery can make a divorce very expensive. It is time consuming, and it can really create a lot of billable hours. If at all possible, the parties should try to reach a reasonable agreement, to avoid all of the expense of conducting discovery. However, this is easier said than done.

Request to Enter a Divorce by Default

If the defendant fails to file an answer or an appearance in a divorce case, then the divorce is defaulted. This means that the person has "blown" his chance to respond or contest the divorce. A request for a default against such a party is governed by R. 4:43. This rule requires the party requesting entry by default to make a formal written request for the entry of the default, supported by the attorney's affidavit. The affidavit shall explain the manner of service of the complaint upon the defendant, the date of service, and that all time periods in which the defendant may file a pleading have expired. The request to enter a default must be filed together within six months of the actual default. The notice to request a default must also be served on the defaulting spouse.

Please keep in mind, that if there is a default, this does not mean that the case is over. If a spouse is seeking equitable distribution, alimony, child support or any other relief, then a process known as "filing a request for equitable distribution" must be filed.

When equitable distribution, alimony, child support or any other relief is sought by the plaintiff, a notice of application for equitable distribution pursuant to R. 5:5-2 is required to be filed before the entry of default. This notice must be filed and served upon defendant twenty days prior to the hearing date and must include the following:

Notice of the trial date,

Statement of the value of each asset,The amount of each debt sought to be distributed,

A proposal for distribution,

A statement whether plaintiff is seeking alimony and/or child support and, if so, the amount, and

A statement of any other relief sought.

As a result, the moving party must still attend court in order to obtain a divorce by entry of a default. The spouse must also bring a certificate of nonmilitary service verifying that her soon to be ex-spouse is not in the military. The courts do not want spouses to be divorcing their ex spouse while they are in the military overseas, and possibly in combat somewhere.

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