Posts made in March, 2015

Fighting a Wrongful Foreclosure in Dallas

It has unfortunately become an all too common scenario in the US, including Dallas: homeowners receive a notice of foreclosure because they have defaulted on their payments. However, this does not mean that all hope is lost.

Foreclosures usually follow a set of strict rules and regulations, depending on whether the state uses a judicial or non-judicial system. The failure of the lender to follow any of these rules is a common basis for a claim of wrongful foreclosure. While this may not necessarily stop foreclosure, it may at least buy the homeowner some time to find a more permanent solution.

There are also instances when the lender has no proof of standing in the foreclosure. Banks, in particular, have had some trouble with producing documentation that proves they have to right to foreclose, mostly because the loan has been passed around so much during the securitization process. According to the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, the debtor has a right to demand documentary proof that the lender has the right to foreclose within 30 days of getting a notice of foreclosure.

The laws governing wrongful foreclosure claims differ from state to state. As any reputable Fort Worth real estate litigation lawyer probably knows, a plaintiff under Texas law has to show that there as something wrong with the foreclosure sale, the property sold for a grossly inadequate amount, and that the low selling price was caused by the defect in the sale. This makes it more challenging for the foreclosure defense lawyer in making a case, but it can be done with the right lawyer.

If you are facing foreclosure in Texas, you have your work cut out for you. Consult with a foreclosure defense lawyer in your state to find out if you have grounds to make a wrongful foreclosure claim. There may be laws that can provide you with temporary relief until you can figure something else out.

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Divorce Facts You Should Think About

Are you thinking of getting married but afraid it may not last? You are not alone, as it is common knowledge that about half of all marriages in the US end up in divorce. However, this doesn’t meant that yours will, at least not for 8 years. That is the average number of years a couple in their first or second marriage will stay married.

However, if both you and your spouse’s parents stayed married, you have a better chance of making it past your 10th year anniversary than those whose parents are divorced or separated. Overall, that is 67% of the total number of married people in the US, with about 35% making it past their silver wedding anniversary. A rather impressive 6% still make it to 50 years, considering that in all probability one spouse will predecease the other before that milestone is reached.

Speaking of which, about 15% of people chose to separate rather than divorce for financial reasons. Divorce can be expensive, which would account for the drop in divorce filings in 2008 when the economic crisis first began to bite into earnings. According to the website of the BB Law Group PLLC, this is often because, this doesn’t mean that during more affluent times, people got divorced more. It only means that it was not always practical to go through the process, especially as it can adversely affect the living standards not only of the divorcing couple but also their children. About 28% of children of divorced parents live below the poverty level.

In Texas, the picture is not so bleak. The Lone Star state is only one of 9 states where the community property laws are in place in a divorce. This means that whatever wealth has accumulated in the marriage will be divided between the spouses. Compare this to the equitable share laws that are in effect in the majority of states, where the higher earning spouse gets to keep a higher percentage of the assets. This is because the property belongs to the spouse that purchased it as deemed “fair and equitable.”

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Get Shot or Get Hit? Not much of a choice

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that more people in the US will die from gunshot wounds than injuries from car accidents in 2015. This is considered a positive thing by the Center for American Progress because while the number of young (15 to 24) Americans dying from car accidents has steadily declined in previous years, the number of people in the same age range killed by guns has stayed the same.

It is good to know that more young people are responding to government efforts to address the causes of car accidents and the issue of drinking while intoxicated from drugs or alcohol. Carmakers are also being more strictly regulated when it comes to safety features and design problems.

However, as any Massachusetts car accident lawyer is likely to point out, it still means that 5,864 young people will probably die from car accidents. That is not so good. The fact that 6,040 gunshot fatalities is projected for the same group is no source of consolation for surviving family members of either type of victim. That is simply too many people dying from what easily preventable causes in most cases. More responsible driving and restricted gun ownership could further reduce these numbers considerably.

Cars are far safer today because of technological innovations than they were a decade ago, which would account for the decrease in accidents. Some cars continue to have serious defects that expose car occupants to unnecessary dangers. Recent recalls on some types of cars that tended to rollover and those fitted with defective airbags are indicative of these risks.

According to the website of the Sampson Law Offices, people involved in car accidents often sustain serious injuries even if they don’t die in the incident. This means considerable pain and suffering as well as extensive medical expenses. If you have been seriously injured in a negligent car accident, you can at least make a financial recovery. Consult with a car accident lawyer in your area to find out how.

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Liability for Construction Accidents and Injuries in New York

We all know that the construction industry is, by the very nature of the work, a hazardous occupation. New York construction workers are aware of this as well, which is why they are well compensated for the high risks they take. However, as the website of lawyers Hach Rose points out, this does not absolve the responsible parties of liability for preventable construction accidents or injuries that the workers sustain due to negligence.

Deciding on who may be held liable for such accidents or injuries will depend largely on the circumstances. It is not always the construction owner, manager or foreperson, although in most cases they typically have control over the workplace. A NY construction accident lawyer can determine the proximate cause of the injury and pinpoint all the parties involved, especially when it concerns a large construction project. Possible defendants for a workplace injury lawsuit include:

  • Construction site owner
  • General contractors – they are often delegated the control over the whole of a project by the construction site owner, and may be held responsible for unsafe working conditions for that particular project
  • “Prime” contractors – these are special contractors delegated to specific tasks i.e. electrical work over which they have sole control and may be held responsible for the safety of their workers and subcontractors they may hire
  • Architects and engineers – these professionals may be held responsible if the design and engineering plans and material specifications they provide the construction crew prove to be defective, resulting in injuries to the workers. They are also expected to check on compliance, the failure to do so may result in an unsafe worksite
  • Manufacturers of construction machinery or equipment – a construction site frequently makes use of high-powered and industrial grade equipment that can result in serious injury or death if it malfunctions or if they fail because they have been incorrectly rated for a particular task or load

If you have been seriously injured in a preventable construction accident, you have a right to be compensated. Consult with a construction accident lawyer in your state to find out who you can hold responsible.

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Defective Hip Implants Settlement Program is just the Beginning

The makers of defective hip implants that catastrophically failed and increased the risk of metallosis in patients announced established a settlement program to address civil complaints against the defective products.

It is estimated that Stryker and Howmedica Osteonics will be paying about $1.4 billion to patients who qualify under the program. The base compensation for each patient is $300,000, which may be higher depending on the extent of the damage and the consequences to the patient and other family members. The announcement was made on November 4, 2014. The deadline for registration to participate in the program was set for December 14, 2014.

The defective products in this landmark settlement program are the Stryker Rejuvenate and ABG II hip replacement devices. The initial recall was made in the first half of 2012 when numerous reports of adverse events started pouring in from patients that required revision or replacement surgery, or suffered significant pain and problems caused by the implants. The manufacturers are under the hammer for defect in design and failing to carry out adequate testing to ensure the safety of their patients.

According to the website of law firm Williams Kherkher, it may be too late to participate in the settlement program, but patients implanted with either device may still be eligible to file a defective medical device lawsuit against the manufacturers. Patients react differently under the same circumstances, and some may have a delayed reaction to the devices. Those that have begun exhibiting the following symptoms of metallosis after the deadline for registration has passed may still make a claim:

  • Breathlessness
  • Headaches
  • Loss of concentration
  • Loss of hearing
  • Pain in the groin area
  • Poor memory
  • Rashes

You should act on this right away before you develop complications. Have your doctor check on you, and consult with a defective hip implant lawyer in your state for assistance. Your journey is just beginning.

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