Articles Tagged with Massachusetts

Dog bites can cause serious personal injuries, infections, disfigurement, permanent scarring, emotional trauma and death.

In the thirteen year period of 2005 through 2017, Dogbites.org reported that canines killed 433 Americans.  Many more suffer serious personal injuries or property damage.  It is the responsibility of a dog owner to ensure their dog does not hurt or injure anyone.

Victims of severe dog attacks who suffer these significant injuries, infections, disfigurement and scarring will need specialized medical care, and often reconstructive surgery is required to diminish the appearance of scars.  These medical procedures can be painful, costly and take years to complete.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, motorcycles make up only 3 percent of all registered vehicles in the United States.  Despite those low numbers, the NHTSA reports there is an increase in motorcyclists killed each year in Massachusetts.  Motorcycle fatalities occurred 28 more times frequently that automobile fatalities.   Some of the common characteristics that contribute to motorcycle injuries and fatalities are other vehicles, speed, alcohol impairment, weather, lighting, and roadway conditions.

According to the Massachusetts State Police, a motorcyclist traveling on an uneven roadway in Kingston, Massachusetts crashed and died after losing control on the uneven pavement and was struck by another vehicle.

Pot holes, uneven pavement, construction or other roadway inconsistencies are flaws more dangerous to the operator of a motorcycle than a car.  If roads are not properly maintained, motorcyclists can crash.  If it was the negligence of the city or town to keep roadways safe, or whether it was the negligence of another driver, we can help.

workers compAchieving a successful result in your initial workers’ compensation benefits hearing is very important. If you succeed and your employer appeals, there are limited ways the employer can win. An appeal that essentially asks the Reviewing Board to reweigh the evidence very likely won’t succeed. The workers’ compensation judge is the trier of fact and has the authority to make decisions regarding witnesses’ credibility and the weight that various pieces of evidence should receive. As long as there was a reasonable basis for what the judge decided, your award of benefits will generally be upheld. Before you take on the workers’ compensation process, be sure you have representation from a skilled Massachusetts workers’ compensation attorney.

C.D. was a worker who was able to achieve that successful result in his hearing. C.D. drove, loaded and unloaded a truck for his employer. One day, at the end of his shift, the driver fell out of his truck, hitting his elbows, shoulder and head. C.D. later filed a claim for workers’ compensation benefits. A hearing was held and, at that hearing, both the driver and a doctor gave credible testimony that the injuries resulting from the accident had left the driver temporarily totally disabled. The judge ruled in favor of the driver and ordered that he receive what’s known as “Section 34” benefits, which means temporary total disability benefits.

The doctor who gave the testimony was an independent medical provider who examined C.D. under the auspices of Section 11A(2) of the workers’ compensation law. In any workers’ compensation case, one of the most important things you’ll have to prove is causation. If you have a history of medical problems prior to your workplace accident, your employer (or employer’s insurer) may try to argue that your injuries are actually tied to those pre-existing conditions, not your workplace accident. Success, then, may be closely tied to having very credible and persuasive testimony that proves this connection with regard to causation.

nursesWhen you entrust a loved one to the care of a nursing home, you understand that there are certain risks and that certain bad things can happen. The chances are, though, that you don’t expect that those things include having your loved one brutally killed by their roommate in an unprovoked attack. Depending on the circumstances of the attack and the events leading up to the attack, the nursing home may have some responsibility for creating the conditions that led to the death. If that happens, your family might have certain legal rights against the nursing home. A knowledgeable Massachusetts nursing home negligence attorney can advise you about your options.

One of the most recent fatal roommate-on-roommate nursing home attack cases, reported by the Boston Globe, occurred at a nursing home in Randolph. The 86-year-old James was lying in bed when his roommate, the 58-year-old Walter, attacked him with a heavy ceramic flower pot. The next day, the injured man died from severe head trauma.

James’ death is not the first of its kind in Massachusetts. A few years ago, a family pursued a wrongful death action on behalf of their 100-year-old loved one. Elizabeth died after her 98-year-old nursing home roommate, Laura, beat her and then strangled and suffocated her with a plastic bag. Elizabeth’s family was unable to win their wrongful death lawsuit against the nursing home because they simply didn’t have the evidence they needed to show that the nursing home knew or should have known that Laura was at risk of murdering her roommate.

Legal News GavelThe Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court recently issued an important new ruling regarding who qualifies as an employee and who is an independent contractor when it comes to workers’ compensation benefits. While court did not adopt the rule for which the injured worker advocated and the ruling ultimately was an unsuccessful outcome for this particular worker, that does not mean that you should give up and fail to pursue your case for benefits, even if your employer asserts that you are an independent contractor. Each case is different and the factors that Massachusetts uses may yield a more favorable result for your case. Be sure never to assume and, instead, talk to an experienced Massachusetts workers’ compensation attorney.

The worker in the case was a woman who delivered papers. She fell on a ramp while working and hurt her right knee and hand. A few months later, she fell on ice and injured her right leg. The injuries eventually caused the worker to undergo two surgeries, one on her knee and one on her hand.

The woman brought a claim for workers’ compensation benefits. The employer asserted that the woman was an independent contractor and, as a result, not eligible for benefits. The woman, in opposition to that argument, contended that the definition of an “employee” contained in the independent contractor statute established that she was an employee.

Legal News GavelThere are many different types of wrinkles one may encounter in an effort to obtain compensation for the harm you suffered in an auto accident. On the surface, your case might seem straightforward: prove that the person you sued was, in fact, at fault, prove that the accident injured you, and prove that those injuries caused you to suffer damages. Seems simple, right? But what happens when the person who hit you has all his assets held by an irrevocable trust? Questions like these are a reminder of the importance of retaining experienced Massachusetts injury counsel, so that you are prepared for whatever twists, turns and surprises your case may throw at you.

Recently, such a “twists and turns” case was the Massachusetts lawsuit brought by S.C. The backstory underlying S.C.’s injury accident dated back several years. In 2001, B.M. was injured in an auto accident. He suffered a severe traumatic brain injury. In 2007, an irrevocable “spendthrift” trust was established for the benefit of B.M. The trust held more than $4.1 million in assets, including $3.5 million in stocks and bonds, a house in Plymouth worth $538,000 and $120,000 of other assets.

Fast forward to 2014, and B.M. and S.C. were involved in a head-on collision. Allegedly, B.M. was traveling 76 mph in a 35 zone, crossed the center line to pass and slammed head-on into S.C.

medical researchThere can many traps awaiting the unwary claimant in a workers’ compensation case. Your employer, or its insurer, likely will be armed with knowledgeable attorneys who are well-versed both in the facts of the case and the law. They may recite Latin words and phrases you don’t know, or legal terms with which you are unfamiliar. To make sure you avoid those traps, make certain you are as well-equipped as your opponent by retaining the services of an experienced Massachusetts workers’ compensation attorney.

If you have pursued both a civil lawsuit and a claim for workers’ compensation benefits, the former has the potential to impact the latter. An example of this was the case of L.Y., who worked as a clinical researcher at a biotechnology company, testing new medications. According to the researcher, his supervisor engaged improper methodology on some tests, which the researcher refused to follow. After the supervisor’s results were discarded, the researcher was allegedly reduced to “meaningless” work, ridiculed by co-workers and eventually fired. All of this, according to L.Y., caused him to suffer a psychological injury.

The researcher did not seek psychiatric care for nearly three years. His doctor diagnosed him as having experienced a “severe, single episode depression.” An impartial physician who examined L.Y. concluded that the researcher had schizoaffective disorder that, while not caused by the negative events at work, had been made worse by them. The independent doctor concluded that L.Y. was totally disabled and that “significantly improved functional capacity is unlikely.”

Legal News GavelWhen you are injured due to someone else’s negligence, such as in a slip-and-fall or trip-and-fall accident, you may be entitled to compensation for the amount of damages that you’ve suffered. In certain circumstances, though, your ability to recover payment for the full extent of the harm you suffered may be limited, even if you have proof of negligence and of the harm you suffered. One such scenario involves cases where the entity who allegedly harmed you is entitled to immunity. Obtaining full success, then, is making sure that you are able to persuade the court that no form of immunity should apply to protect that person or entity. When it comes to these and other litigation strategies, make sure you have a knowledgeable Massachusetts injury attorney to represent you.

Today, what is a “public” entity versus a private one can be less than perfectly clear, given the increasing prevalence of public-private partnerships. Take, for example, public housing. A public housing program may be operated by a public housing authority (a governmental entity,) but the individual properties may be owned and/or managed by private entities. That was the situation facing a man injured in a recent slip-and-fall case.

J. allegedly slipped and fell while going down the stairs at his public housing apartment building. The resident suffered significant injuries, so he sued several entities for the harm he incurred. The entities he included in his lawsuit were the local housing authority, the owner of the building and the owner’s managing agent.

Legal News GavelWhen you experience the loss of a loved one due to an accident, it is always devastating. If that accident occurred because someone else was negligent, the issues you may be facing multiply. In addition to your family issues, that negligence may create legal issues. The loss of your loved one undoubtedly did major damage to your emotional happiness, and it may also have done major damage to the financial stability of your family. For all of these processes, it is important to retain a skilled Massachusetts wrongful death attorney to represent you and ensure that your legal rights are protected.

Developing and presenting a persuasive case in a wrongful death action involves many types of evidence. A recent example was the case of a man named Albert, who sued a convenience store chain for the wrongful death of his wife, Kimmy. When the couple stopped at the store’s location in Chicopee, Kimmy went inside for coffee while Albert parked the vehicle. As the woman began to enter the store, an 81-year-old man, who may have had a stroke, raced his Ford Explorer through the parking lot and into the façade of the store at more than 55 mph. A store worker was hurt, and Kimmy was killed.

Albert sued the convenience store chain for Kimmy’s wrongful death. In a wrongful death case like this, you can pursue your case under a premises liability theory. This means that, much as with a trip-and-fall or slip-and-fall accident that causes injuries, you can establish the property owner’s liability by showing that there was a dangerous condition present on the property, that the property owner knew or reasonably should have known about the hazard, that the property owner failed to fix the problem, and that this unresolved hazard caused the victim’s injuries.

It’s five o’ clock on a Friday and you’re heading home after an exhausting week of work. You’re practically on auto-pilot with the thought of the impending weekend being the only fuel guiding you home, and then BAM-it happens. You find yourself in a car accident. Everyone understands when you get behind the wheel you run the risk of finding yourself in a surprise collision, yet we never think about the odds of it actually happening to us, and even worse we don’t know the steps to take to protect ourselves in the event of an automobile accident adapted from the Massachusetts DMV site.

Car Accidet

EMS Clearing A Car Accident

  1. First and foremost, you must never leave the scene of an accident. It seems obvious and trite, but flight is a guttural reaction to stimuli. You must remain as calm and reposed as you can, given the circumstance. Find a safe place to pull over your car, staying as reasonably close to the vehicle, or property you collided with without obstructing traffic. Be aware of your surroundings and any other potential dangers, such as fire, or a downed electrical wire.