The Importance of Workers’ Compensation to Businesses

Employers are legally obligated to ensure the safety of their workplace, whether that workplace is inherently dangerous, like construction sites, or not, like offices. But workplace accidents do happen. Employees can sustain an injury or acquire a terrible illness, making them less efficient, and worse, they may even lose time at work.

Workers’ compensation exists so these employees can get financial help. According to the website of Scudder & Hedrick, PLLC, filing for a workers’ compensation claim can be a long process. But this may be necessary so employees can get their employers to pay their hospital bills, lost wages after missing time at work, and rehabilitation.

This may look like extra costs for employers, but it cannot be denied that having a workers’ compensation policy is very important. It is required by law, but different jurisdictions have different guidelines about the insurance. There may be jurisdictions that require businesses to have at least three or four employees to be eligible for workers’ compensation, and there may be jurisdictions that require only one.

Looking at it in the most direct way make you realize that it is extra cost, but when you consider it deeper, the extra cost is worth it. Having a good workers’ compensation can attract competitive employees, and better, these employees may even stay with you for a long time. Workers’ compensation can be attractive to workers in dangerous environments, such as factories.

The insurance plan can cost more if your business is more prone to accidents, so it is understandable that you still have your doubts. But this also means that you are more willing to enforce a more effective safety program to avoid accidents, injuries, and workers’ compensation claims. It can even trigger a ripple effect and reduce the cost of your premiums. You make your workplace safer and you pay less to your insurance. It’s a win-win situation.

Putting your employees on workers’ compensation also defends you from greater financial costs. If your employee does not have workers’ compensation, he may sue your company, especially if the accident that has caused the injury or illness is negligence on your side. Employees who have workers’ compensation waive their right to sue you, protecting you from the hassles of courts and high settlements.

Cerebral Palsy as a Birth Injury

Cerebral palsy refers to disorders that affect the brain, which particularly results into partial or complete paralysis of muscles. It affects brain and body coordination and generally has three types: ataxic cerebral palsy, athetoid cerebral palsy, and spastic cerebral palsy.

The medical condition can happen because of a variety of reasons, like medical malpractice. According to the website mazininjurylawyers.com, cerebral palsy can be a birth injury that could have been preventable. So if your child has sustained a cerebral palsy and you have a reasonable ground to suspect that it is because of a medical malpractice, you might be looking at a personal injury lawsuit in the making.

Ataxic cerebral palsy

Ataxic cerebral palsy is a kind of cerebral palsy that affects coordination and balance. It is caused by damage to the motor control center of the child’s brain. The child may experience problems in walking, holding objects, speaking, and moving their eyes.

Athetoid cerebral palsy

This is a kind of cerebral palsy that is often characterized by involuntary movements and abnormal muscle tone. Symptoms of athetoid cerebral palsy include abrupt movements, drooling, poor posture, slurred speech, and twisting or writhing movements.

Spastic cerebral palsy

This is the most common kind of cerebral palsy. It is characterized by stiff and jerky movements, as a result of damages in bundles of neurons in the brain. It may affect arms, legs, and even one full side of the body. One of its worst forms, the spastic quadriplegia, affects all four limbs, the torso, and the face.

Cerebral palsy as a birth injury often occurs because of the lack of oxygen in the brain or in the body, if the baby has been pulled out too forcefully by medical instruments like forceps, or if the baby has experienced too much pressure in the brain during the delivery process.

Whiplash Injury

There are different types of injuries that those who figure in car accidents may sustain: lacerations, bone fracture, paralysis, brain damage, spinal cord injury, other forms of life-altering physical trauma, and wrongful death are among these. However, according to the American Chiropractic Association (ACA), whiplash, which numbers to about 120,000 annually, may be the most common type of injury sustained by car accident victims. Whiplash is actually a sudden, violent blow that causes the head to jolt to one direction (and then back), damaging neck ligaments, muscles, tendons and other soft tissues, in the process. It may occur as a result of a fall, an assault or a sports injury; its most common cause, though, is vehicular accident, such as when a car is hit from behind (rear-ended) or at the side.

A whiplash is not an easily preventable injury; it is not immediately obvious too until after some hours, or even a day, following the accident. A person who has sustained this injury will experience muscle spasms, headaches and pain in the arms or shoulder. It can also cause back pain, swelling, nausea, lethargy or lack of energy, dizziness or sense of pins and needles in the arms.

As motor vehicle accidents are usually due to drunk-driving, over speeding, driving too slow or reckless driving, it simply means that any road accident can easily be prevented, if only drivers would choose to observe road traffic rules and refrain from being distracted while behind the wheel.

Road courtesy and responsibility are two virtues that many drivers obviously lack, especially young drivers who, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, are the ones most prone to vehicular accidents. Many young drivers, despite having been informed of the necessity of behaving properly on the road, by observing traffic safety rules and yielding to others on the road when necessary, still end up guilty of driving while intoxicated, driving beyond the maximum speed limit or texting while driving. Much to their regret when an accident occurs, but whatever injury their irresponsible act results to, it is something that can no longer be undone.

As explained in the website of Pohl & Berk, LLP, whiplash injuries are often accompanied by numerous expenses, which include: emergency transport; hospital visits; x-rays / ct-scans; pain medication costs; and, physical therapy. To all these, an at-fault driver can be held legally liable.

Settlement Value of A Shoulder Replacement Lawsuit

Getting involved in a shoulder replacement lawsuit can be stressful for both the parties involved. It will not only take more of their time but will also prove costly. For this reason, the defendant may want to settle the case outside of court. According to the website of Williams Kherkher, correcting the damage caused by a poorly designed shoulder replacement device entails huge expenses on the part of the patient.

When the parties involved in a shoulder replacement lawsuit agree to a settlement, there are various factors that the court will look at in awarding an amount to the plaintiff. Any dollar amount will depend on the unique factors of each case. One of the factors that the court will look at is the type of shoulder injury. Depending on the degree of severity, the value of the settlement amount will depend on the location such as in the tendons, muscles, or ligaments. There are two medical categories that will affect the dollar value of the case. The first one is instability which brings pain when raising the arm or a feeling of the shoulder slipping out of place.

The second medical category is impingement which is caused by repetitive overhead arm movements. The case will also depend on how each party value the case if ever the case goes to trial. The court will also look at how each party might be willing to agree upon in order to settle the case prior to trial. Coming up with an accurate settlement amount may also prove to be difficult. Damages such as medical bills and lost wages are easier to value because they are concrete. In the case of pain and suffering, predicting the value is best at an educated guess which could be based on similar shoulder injury cases in the past. The effect of the injury on the plaintiff is also key to determining the settlement amount.

Are Joint Replacement Surgeries Safe?

Patients diagnosed with diseases that cause severe joint pain and damage lead lives heavily impacted by their condition. Any type of severe joint dysfunction can cause extreme pain and very limited mobility. This is why, in such cases, many doctors encourage their patients to undergo joint replacement surgery. By replacing the damaged joint with an artificial implant, a patient suffering from joint dysfunction is expected to recover proper range of movement after a short period of recovery.

Unfortunately, joint replacement surgeries aren’t always foolproof. While all surgical procedure involves some amount of risk, joint replacement surgeries can become especially dangerous due to use of implants that are later found to be defective. Implants manufactured by top pharmaceutical companies have been found to cause serious side-effects like metal toxicity, as well as additional bone and tissue damage. A defective implant can also easily become dislodged or dislocated, and having such errors fixed requires a patient to undergo another risky surgery.

Patients that have suffered damaged due to defective joint implants have the option to pursue legal action against the manufacturers of the pharmaceutical product in question. In fact, just a year ago, several plaintiffs have been awarded with multi-million verdicts in individual cases filed in several different states. If you have suffered from the severe side-effects caused by defective joint implants, you might have the option to contribute to these class action suits and get the justice you deserve.

If you believe that your joint dysfunction has gotten significantly worse after undergoing a joint replacement surgery, visit your physician to get a confirmation of the damage and receive treatment right away. After you’ve recovered, you might then want to pursue legal action against the pharmaceutical company responsible for the defective implant used during your surgery. Consult with a shoulder replacement lawyer to learn more about your available options.

Liability or Comprehensive Coverage: Which One Is Right For You?

Having car insurance is a requirement in all states. Shopping for coverage can be a daunting task given the variety of options to choose from. Two types of coverage that you can choose from include liability and comprehensive coverage. But which one is right for you? According to the website of Zavodnick, Zavodnick & Lasky, LLC, you need to choose the one you’d rather have and suits your individual or family needs.

Before determining the right one for you, let us look at what each type of insurance covers. Liability coverage does not shoulder damages to your own vehicle in case of an accident. It pays for damages done to other vehicles that you are legally required to cover. If you got involved in a traffic accident where you were deemed at fault and caused damaged the other car, you can use liability insurance. However, it does not have a deductible so you will not have any out-of-the-pocket expenses.

On the other hand, comprehensive coverage shoulders damages done to other vehicles. It also shoulders damages to your own vehicle, not just from traffic accidents but from natural sources as well. With comprehensive insurance, you will have to choose a deductible so you have to shoulder some of the damage from your own pocket. Bear in mind that liability coverage may be included in comprehensive coverage.

As to the question of which coverage is better? It will all boil down to what you need and your budget. The monthly cost for liability coverage will surely be less than that of comprehensive coverage. So you have to look at the additional benefits of comprehensive coverage.

If your car was completely totaled, could you handle the remaining debt and pay from your own pocket and buy a new car to replace the old one? If you have an old car that has already been completely settled, your best choice is liability coverage.

If you have paid for any car and have a huge need for emergency money, liability coverage is also better. With huge savings, you would be able to handle the cost of a replacement vehicle. This way, you would not have to choose the comprehensive insurance. Another advantage of liability insurance is that if you rarely use your car and can afford not to have it, you can do away with the comprehensive insurance.

In most instances, comprehensive is probably the better option.

Ways To Possibly Avoid Motorcycle Injuries

Over 80 percent of reported motorcycle accidents according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) translate into an injury or death to motorcycle riders. Motorcyclists and their families, according to the lawyers of Mazin & Associates law firm, often experience difficulty in the recovery process after being involved in catastrophic accidents.  Motorcyclists therefore should exercise extra care on the road.

Aside from wearing protection gears like helmets, visibility accessories, eye protections and leather clothing, motorcyclists may also avoid accidents by being educated especially those individuals who are starting to ride motorcycles. The NHTSA requires motorcyclists to undergo training courses for them to become equipped with skills and for them to become more extra careful while on the road. Motorcyclists should note that their protections are limited compared to individuals driving or riding automobiles. Motorcyclists are advised to be more careful when riding on slippery roads or when there are obstacles or debris on the road. Drive on a certain speed that you think you can react to road conditions. A motorcyclist driving with excessive speed may possibly crash if he or she does not notice road potholes, sand, oil spillage, or any road debris.

Motorcyclists should make sure that other vehicles clearly sees them on the road. While wearing reflectorized clothing is highly advised, motorcyclists should also prevent going to a vehicle’s blind spot or the vehicle’s side where a driver might fail to see the motorcycle. For example an automobile making a left turn on an intersection may possibly fail to notice a motorcycle from behind. Like automobile drivers, motorcyclists are also prevented to drive when they are under the influence of intoxicants. The NHTSA estimated that half of lone motorcycle accidents were caused by alcohol intoxication. Unlike automobile drivers, motorcyclists need full presence of mind and effort to balance motorcycle. It is a plus factor for motorcyclists if they learn how to anticipate any unfolding situations while on the road.

COPD: What it is and how you can prevent it

Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, or COPD, is a condition that occurs when there is a chronic inflammation in the lungs that causes your airflow to be obstructed. It is oftentimes a result of chronic bronchitis (persistent inflammation of the bronchial tubes that deliver air to the lungs), or emphysema (destruction of the air sacs or alveoli).

People with COPD may experience one or more of these signs and symptoms:

  • Chronic and productive cough
  • Tightness in the chest
  • Wheezing
  • Cyanosis (bluish lips and fingernails due to lack of oxygen)
  • Unintended weight loss
  • Lethargy
  • Other respiratory illnesses, such as lung infections
  • Throat obstructed with sputum, especially when waking up in the morning

People with emphysema and chronic bronchitis, those who smoke, and those with asthma who smoke are at highest risk of COPD. Furthermore, older age, genetic predisposition, and exposure to second hand smoke and workplace fume may all contribute to the disease.

In areas where air quality is low, people may also be exposed to irritants that may cause COPD-causing lung diseases. Car pollution is considered among the primary culprit for this disease. Unfortunately, many car makers ignore their responsibility in creating healthier and more lung-friendly cars. In fact, many people are now filing a Volkswagen emissions fraud lawsuit after learning that the German car company installed software in some of its newer cars to deceive standard emissions tests.

If you are experiencing these symptoms, speak with your doctor right away for an accurate COPD diagnosis. When left undiagnosed and untreated, this condition may lead to even more serious lung complications, such as lung cancer, lung infections, heart disorders, depression and pulmonary hypertension (high blood pressure in the blood vessels of the lungs).

Even though COPD sounds like a very serious disease, this lung condition is completely manageable. Medications such as steroids, antibiotics, and bronchodilators are usually recommended to relieve its symptoms. Lung therapies, such as lung exercises and oxygen therapy, can also be used to improve breathing and quality of life.

Car Recalls and Defects

Many times a year, car manufacturers release recalls on defective parts to vehicles for the safety of the driver. These are common, however, sometimes the defects can be particularly serious and even dangerous to the driver.

As of late, several brands have released recalls on parts of their cars, many of which could lead to serious injuries, if left untreated.

Although not everyone is fortunate enough to drive a Ferrari, those who do should be aware that a recall was issued on the LaFerrari model’s tire pressure monitoring system. The system offers a false readout on tire pressure, which alerts the driver of low tire pressure, but still advises a max speed of 50 mph. However, this readout is incorrect, and driving with this defect could lead to crashes.

Another tire pressure recall comes from Toyota. Southeast Toyota distributors are recalling some 2015 Toyota Tundras for incorrect tire pressure information. Some tires on these Tundras are equipped with incorrect information on how much to inflate tires, which can result in under-inflated tires and can increase the risk of crashing.

Fiat Chrysler has recently announced a recall on about 164,000 2014-2015 Jeep Grand Cherokees. Parts of these SUVs may become exposed to water and cause short-circuiting, therefore creating a fire hazard. This is just one of several recalls on this model, including recalls due to unexpected airbag deployment and issues with rear shocks becoming detached.

In the midst of controversy over an ignition switch recall, GM is also recalling 2015 Cadillac ATS and CTS models due to break pedal issues that lead to an increased risk of crashes.

Visit the following informative website to view more about car defects and malfunctions, and the liability of automobile manufacturers.

Is Monsanto Responsible for the Effect of PCBs?

Polychlorinated Biphenyls (PCBs) are, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), a man-made synthetic compound used in electrical equipment, mostly, due to its insulating properties. The Monsanto Company was responsible for the manufacturing of the substance as 99% of all PCB presence can be attributed to their company and they had been in operation of the pollutant since 1930 until the United States Congress issued a ban on their production in 1979 due to hazardous effects to the environment and the people who live in it.

An internal memo discovered from within Monsanto claims that the company had been aware of the potential toxicity of the substance as early as the 1960s.

EPA conducted a study, then, in order to observe the health effects that exposure to PCBs has had on people over the years. Due to its synthetic nature, PCBs do not naturally decay with the environment and cause harm just by existing. Improper disposal of the chemical also led to the poisoning of the bodies of water that it touched, unsettling marine life as well as contaminating fish for consumption.

Toxic Monsanto PCBs were then used to test the direct effect of exposure on humans. One such study involved exposure to the compound with a Rhesus monkey – a species that is 93% compatible with the human genome – and found that exposure caused significant change in the creatures’ thymus glands. The thymus gland in people is at its most active before puberty and is responsible for the development of necessary hormones that fight infection, as it is directly linked with the body’s immune system.

There have been claims of people who have filed for legal action against Monsanto, claiming that it was exposure to PCBs that have caused non-Hodgkin lymphoma in their system – a cancer that starts from the lymphocytes, a part of the body’s immune system. The link cannot, therefore, be ignored as after blood tests – the victims were found to have had high levels of PCBs in their blood.

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