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Traveling Employees: 3 Legalities That You Need To Deal With

Posted by on Jan 10, 2017 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Traveling Employees: 3 Legalities That You Need To Deal With

If you are going to have your employees out on the road meeting your clients in person, then it is crucial that you understand the legalities of the situation. Here are three legal problems that you need to deal with when it comes to employees traveling for your business: Legal Issue #1: Compensating Your Employee for Hours Worked Regarding work-related travel, you must compensate your employees. However, you must be able to clearly define work-related and travel hours. As a general rule, if your employee is traveling between customer locations or work sites during regular working hours, you would need to compensate him or her. If your employee is traveling out of town in a car, then you should compensate them for their travels behind the wheel. Legal Issue #2: Insuring Your Employee and Your Business During Travel As you are probably well aware, your business can be held liable for any acts performed by an employee, which includes those employee acts outside of the business office. Therefore, if you have an employee traveling for work and is “clocked-in,” you may be held responsible for any intentional acts or accidents that occur and injure other individuals in the process. In order minimize your risk in this type of situation, it is important that your business is protected with a commercial insurance policy. There are several forms of insurance policies that you can choose from, but you want to make sure that you get coverage for everything – liability, workers’ compensation, auto, etc. – if your employees will be traveling frequently. Legal Issue #3: Tracking Expenses and Reporting Taxes of Work-Related Employee Travel As a business, you want to keep your costs to a bare minimum in order to maintain a profitable bottom line. Since traveling can be expensive, it makes sense that you would like to keep travel expenses as minimal as possible. You can put your employees through a small training program that will teach them how to bargain hunt. However, it is just as important for your business for them to also know how to keep track of their travel-related expenses. For one, you need to keep a meticulous record of expenses for accounting purposes. For another, many of those expenses will probably be eligible to be deducted from your taxes, which can help save your business money. As your business grows, running it will only get more complicated. Work-related travel doesn’t make things any easier. However, an employment attorney can help you deal with the legalities associated with employee travel as well as other legal issues that may crop up in the business world, so don’t hesitate to have one on your side as you navigate the complex world of business. For more information, contact local professionals like Mohajerian A Professional Law...

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A Picture Can Be Worth A Thousand Words – Especially Of An Auto Accident

Posted by on Dec 15, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on A Picture Can Be Worth A Thousand Words – Especially Of An Auto Accident

The most important part of assuring that your legal interests are protected in the event of an accident is to document everything at the scene. While the police investigation provides a complete written report, mistakes do happen. The best way to cover yourself is with pictures; as many pictures as you can take. Even the simplest mistakes in an accident report can prevent you from either being compensated, as you should, or sometimes even being compensated at all. Here are important details to take photographically register for yourself if you can. The License Plates Get a picture of the license plate number of all vehicles involved. While this may seem like common sense, it can present problems if there are any mistakes in the numbers. If more than one vehicle is involved, snap a picture of every one of them. Good suggestion is to make a written note of the order, if it was a multiple car accident; especially the vehicle you feel is responsible for the wreck. Photograph ALL the Damage. While the police report will log a written account of all the damage, get pictures of every bit of damage you think may have been a result of the accident. Assess the damage to your vehicle, but most importantly, check for the damage to the other vehicles. This can be extremely important if the other party or parties try to place the blame on you. Assume other people involved in an accident are inherently honest, but document all the damage incurred. People have been known to exaggerate the damage to their car after an accident in an unscrupulous attempt to get other problems paid for, either by you, or by the insurance company. The More the Better Take many pictures from many different angles. Shoot a photograph of all 4 sides of every car involved, multiple images if you can. When you get home, you can delete extra pictures that are not useful, but you will assure yourself that you will have at least one clear and concise picture of every aspect of your accident. Shoot the Scene Photograph the scene of the accident. Get street signs, stop signs, billboards, or other landmarks to designate the actual location that the accident occurred. Get a good shot of any debris in the road, weather conditions, stop signs, or anything else that may have contributed to the accident. Be extra attentive to any obscure road signs that may have helped cause the accident. Take nothing for granted. Best to err on the side of caution when taking pictures of the accident scene. Just like you want every side of all the cars involved, get a clear picture of every potential thing that might have caused the accident. Your lawyer can sort them out.  Save Your Photographs The next step is to immediately get them off your phone and onto a safe mechanism to insure they do not accidentally get erased before any claims or court proceedings are finalized. The best advice is to save all the usable pictures to both a disc and the cloud. Get a copy to your attorney the first time you meet with them. When it comes to automobile accidents, the old saying, “a picture is worth a thousand words,” can be really true. Many...

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5 Steps To Take After An Oil Rig Injury

Posted by on Nov 28, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 5 Steps To Take After An Oil Rig Injury

Working on an oil rig in an oil field is a very challenging job, and there are inherent risks of injury. Some safety precautions should be taken, such as wearing protective gear at all time, using respirators if around noxious gasses, and always staying connected to fall protection harnesses. However, accidents and injuries can still happen if  even if all safety precautions are taken. If you are injured in an oil rig accident, take the following steps: Notify Your Supervisor  Immediately following an injury on an oil rig, it is important to notify the supervisor of the incident. The accident and injury should be documented– make sure that you ask for a copy of the accident report to keep for your records. Seek Medical Care Oil rig injuries can be quite serious, so you should see a doctor as soon as possible for treatment. Depending on the severity of your injuries, you may need to take time off work while you recover. Follow your doctor’s directions carefully, and don’t return to work until you are cleared to do so.  Document Everything Gathering evidence can greatly help your case after an oil rig injury. If possible, use a camera to take photos of the accident site from several different angles. It is also a good idea to take pictures of your injuries immediately after the accident and during the healing process. Collect Witness Statements If your injury occurred during a normal shift when other employees were around, take the time to ask them for their account of what they saw when you were injured. In addition to asking for statements, also make sure that you have their full name and their contact information. Contact a Lawyer  When you are injured on an oil rig while on the clock, you are entitled to compensation. The best way to ensure that you receive the compensation that you deserve is by hiring a lawyer who is experienced in oil rig injury cases. Your lawyer will be able to use all of the evidence that you collected to build a case on your behalf. At the minimum, you should be entitled to a workers compensation insurance settlement that covers the cost of your medical care and lost wages. But if your injury occurred due to the negligence of the oil company, your lawyer may be able to secure you a much bigger settlement since the injuries were not your...

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What Exactly Are Patents And Which One Should You Get For Your Invention?

Posted by on Nov 4, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on What Exactly Are Patents And Which One Should You Get For Your Invention?

You have a great new idea for a product or perhaps an idea to improve an existing one. You don’t want anyone else to steal your idea before you have had the chance to research and design it and bring it to fruition. This is where a patent will come in handy. What exactly are patents and which one should you get for your invention? What Is a Patent? A patent is a grant given by the United States government to an inventor or company for the sole purpose of designing and researching new ideas in which to turn into products, machinery or even to develop new plants and flowers. This grant is a monopoly on the research and development period for a limited time only and this period will vary depending on what patent is given. The idea behind patents was to let the inventor or creator of the item get the benefits of the research and development of the item before any other company got involved and potentially improved upon the original idea. The Types of Patents Utility Patent: A utility patent is considered a catch-all type of patent by the government and this includes any and all completely new inventions, improvements on existing inventions or ideas, machinery, process, manufacture and novel ideas. Design Patent: A design patent is a new and original idea of either a product or how a product was manufactured, for example, a new bottle design or music player design. This is the most common of the patents among inventors. Plant Patent: A plant patent is actually the least used of the patents and is solely for the purpose of the design of new and different plants and flowers. This is typically by using different breeding procedures – both asexually and sexually that are new and novel. How Long Do Patents Last? Patents don’t last forever and in fact, have an expiration date. Depending on which patent you are getting, it will determine the length of time you have exclusivity to the idea. For example, if you have an idea for a new plant or need a utility patent, the period will expire in 20 years after the application date. For a design patent, you have a period of 14 years after you have received the patent. You can only obtain a patent if the invention or idea is a new one and not already patented by someone else, or has a patent in another country. For assistance, talk to a professional like Lingbeck Law...

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Take Charge At An Automobile Accident Scene Before The Authorities Arrive

Posted by on Oct 14, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Take Charge At An Automobile Accident Scene Before The Authorities Arrive

When you’re in an automobile accident, your first instincts might be to be upset or worry about the cost of repairs — and no one can blame you. However, it’s also important to keep a cool head and take charge of the situation. Some people who are in accidents are so absorbed with what has happened that they fail to identify and react to safety threats on the scene. While the arrival of the authorities will make the scene safer, it could be several minutes before a police cruiser pulls up. Until that occurs, take charge of the scene in these ways. Make The Scene More Visible Try to quickly assess the visibility of the scene. In low-light conditions, especially, other motorists might be unaware of the accident and the potentially haphazard placement of vehicles on the road. Likewise, motorists can fail to see an accident that has happened immediately around a blind corner. A top priority is to make the scene more visible, which you can do in a number of ways. If you have a roadside safety kit, remove the folding pylon and set it up on the road behind you; at night, use road flares in this capacity. You can also ask other drivers involved in the accident, or those who have stopped to act as witnesses, to provide any such devices that can be used. Identify Potential Hazards Some accident scenes can possess safety hazards that panicked motorists might not notice. Take charge by looking for such issues. For example, if a vehicle’s damaged condition has resulted in leaking gasoline or oil on the road, there could be a fire risk. Make sure people stand well back from the scene and ensure that no one lights a cigarette. Likewise, encourage anyone standing around to move into a safe area away from the road. Frazzled motorists might stand on the road itself to call or text their insurance company without considering the dangers of their location. Decide When Vehicles Can Be Moved In larger accidents, a vehicle might be immovable. However, in small accidents, local authorities encourage motorists to steer their vehicles to the side of the road or even a nearby parking area to minimize the disruption to traffic. If you and the other driver involved in the accident have initially left your vehicles in the roadway, talk calmly to decide whether you can move them into a safer area. If you both agree with the usefulness of doing so, take action in this manner. For more information, visit a site like...

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The Five People in Your Life You Need to Background Check

Posted by on Sep 27, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on The Five People in Your Life You Need to Background Check

Have you ever run a background check on someone? You might be surprised how easy it is to do and to know that you should be running background checks on people in your own life. Here are four people you should know more about.  Your Online Date You’ve been talking online or even on the telephone, and you’re really hitting it off. It’s time to do some checking to make sure that this person is legitimate. A background check will give you information like marital status, location, and criminal history. These are all things the other person could be lying about, and you need to make sure you’re talking to the person you think you are.  Your Real-Life Date Guess what? People who might hurt you aren’t always online. If you meet someone at the supermarket or in a bar, go ahead and run a background check before you go on that first date. At the least, doing so will give you peace of mind, but a background check could also save you from a potentially dangerous situation.  Your Kid’s Coach Think about who your children spend time with when they aren’t with you. Are they under the supervision of a youth group leader, a coach, or a club leader?  Anyone who spends time leading children should have a background check. Most organizations are required by law to do this, and some will even if it’s not mandatory. Ask to see the background checks run on adults who spend time with your kids. If the organization can’t produce one, run it yourself.  Be especially vigilant with volunteers. Most people volunteer because they enjoy working with kids and want to donate their time, but sometimes people who have bad intentions volunteer as an excuse to spend time with children.  Your Babysitter It might seem obvious to run a background check on a sitter, but many people don’t. If you hired your babysitter through an agency, background checks were run. But if your babysitter is a nice kid you met at the playground or someone recommended by a friend, you should run your own background check.  Your Handyman (or Woman) You should know the criminal history of anyone who works in your house. This includes people who come in to fix and maintain your property.  It might feel like you are being less than trusting, but you need to know who is spending time in your house with your kids and alone with you. Background checks are easy to run and give you a sense of security that is...

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4 Common Reasons Workers’ Compensation Is Denied

Posted by on Sep 7, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 4 Common Reasons Workers’ Compensation Is Denied

If you’re faced with an injury that happened on the job, you will want to be compensated for your financial losses. This can be a challenging time in your life, so being able to get back on your feet can be difficult. However, before you can receive this type of payment, you must first apply for it. There are some reasons you may be denied and knowing what these are can be helpful. Reason #1: Waiting too long It’s important to notify your employer of your accident as soon as it happens. This can make it more likely that you have a case that is taken seriously and is dealt with immediately. Waiting for days or weeks to let your supervisor know of your injury can discount the importance of your case and may disqualify you entirely for payment. Reason #2: Seeing the wrong doctor Before visiting any medical provider for treatment, you will want to talk to your employer. It’s common for most companies to have a list of doctors that you should see, and going outside of this network may prevent your reimbursement. Reason #3: Having a preexisting condition If your inability to complete your tasks at work is due to an ailment you’ve had for a long time, this won’t allow you to receive workers’ compensation. For instance, if you have a back injury that happened before working at your company and this prevents you from doing your job, you won’t qualify for this payment. Reason #4: Not seeking treatment Your medical provider will give you the best recommendations that can enable you to get better quickly. You may need to have surgery or enroll in physical therapy for a full recovery that will allow you to return to work. However, if you fail to get the treatment that your doctor has advised you to have, you may not be able to receive workers’ compensation. You will want to follow your physician’s advice precisely. The benefits of getting workers’ compensation are numerous. However, if you’ve been denied this coverage, you may want to seek legal action to help reverse the decision made by your employer. Be sure to talk to a workers’ compensation attorney in your area to enable you to get started on this process today. Doing so will allow you to know the steps you must take for legal success. To discover more about this topic, contact local professionals as soon as...

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Going To Your First IEP Meeting? Be Sure You Do These Things

Posted by on Aug 18, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Going To Your First IEP Meeting? Be Sure You Do These Things

Being the parent of a special needs child can present unique challenges that need to be met. If your child is just starting school and you’ve been scheduled for an Individualized Education Program (abbreviated as IEP) meeting to discuss what services they will need throughout the day in their classes, you might be nervous. At the meeting, there will be a team of school representatives there who might dispute your desire for particular services or accommodations you believe your child needs. Use these three suggestions to help you determine what you must do to get what your child needs. Get Documentation Before doing anything else, it’s important to be prepared. You must know what kinds of services you want for your child, and more importantly, you need to have documentation from a health care provider that bolsters your position. For example, if you want your child to have one-on-one attention, you may want to bring a letter from your child’s psychologist about why that is recommended. Talk to Other Parents One of the smartest things you can do to prepare for your own IEP meeting is to chat with parents of other special education children who have already had their own meetings. They can tell you more about their own experiences and offer you suggestions and ideas for your upcoming meeting. They can tell you what they had wished that they knew when they were in your position so that you know what mistakes you’ve got to avoid. After talking to parents who know what the meetings are like, you might feel more calm and informed about the entire situation. Write Notes When it is finally time for the IEP meeting, it is easy to feel somewhat intimidated as the school representatives tell you what they can and cannot do for your child. However, it’s important that you listen to everything being said and take notes accordingly. These notes will help you if you choose to take further action when the meeting is over. If they say they cannot allow your child to be in a mainstream reading class even if you believe they are capable of succeeding there, for instance, write down their rationale so you can follow up in an appeal or with an attorney. An IEP meeting can be stressful, but if you use the suggestions laid out here, you should be more prepared and confident about the outcome. Speak to a special education attorney like those found at the Law Office of Mark W Voigt, who can be your advocate and accompany you to these meetings, in order to ensure proper treatment of your...

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3 Rules Of Etiquette To Follow When Working With A Court Reporter

Posted by on Aug 1, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 3 Rules Of Etiquette To Follow When Working With A Court Reporter

Depositions play a key role in gathering evidence and establishing timelines for both civil and criminal cases. In order to ensure that the information gathered during a deposition can be reviewed in the future, a court reporter is often called upon to create a transcript of the deposition. Working with court reporters can be beneficial, but there are some rules of etiquette that must be followed to ensure the experience is a positive one for all parties involved. Here are three rules to remember as you work with court reporters to record your depositions in the future. 1. Speak at a moderate pace. When conducting a deposition, it’s imperative that you take the time to speak at a moderate pace. With the help of a stenography machine a court reporter can type up to 200 words per minute, so you may think that you don’t need to adjust your speech pattern to accommodate the needs of the reporter. Even with their incredible speed, court reporters can easily become overwhelmed when transcribing a conversation that takes place too quickly. By speaking at a moderate pace you ensure the reporter is able to accurately record all the information provided in a deposition, which can only help you more effectively establish your case in the future. 2. Always communicate verbally. One of the easiest ways to frustrate a court reporter is to make a habit of communicating using non-verbal cues. If you rely on hand gestures, facial expressions, or other non-verbal actions to get your message across, your court reporter may have difficulty recording your deposition accurately. The reporter can only record information that is transmitted verbally, so before you enter a deposition be sure that you are prepared to communicate using words to reinforce your message. 3. Provide a spelling cheat-sheet for case-specific terminology. Many legal cases involve matters that have their own terminology. While you might be familiar with the terms used to describe certain aspects of your case, the court reporter will likely be unfamiliar with industry-specific terms. Providing a cheat-sheet with the proper spelling for any case-specific terms you feel might be used during the deposition will help your court reporter do his or her job more effectively. Working in partnership with your court reporter to accurately record depositions can be a vital component in any successful case. Maintaining proper etiquette as you rely on a court reporter for assistance will increase the ease with which a reporter can capture vital information during your future depositions. To contact a court reporting service, check out a company like L & L Reporting Service,...

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Dealing With A Stolen Identity And Criminal Cases

Posted by on Jul 17, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Dealing With A Stolen Identity And Criminal Cases

Having your identity stolen typically equates to fraud of the financial kind. Some people steal identities and social security numbers in order to receive credit products or money that they would otherwise not be qualified for. However, there are some identity thieves who assume the actual identity of the person. If someone has stolen your identity and they have proceeded to commit crimes, you may be accused of these crimes. This may affect your criminal record, which can affect the rest of your life. If you are facing someone stealing your identity and committing crimes, here are some steps to take to prove this and clear your name.  Start your financial life over If your identity has been stolen, the first thing that you need to do is make a police report. The police report, however, does not mean that financial companies and credit reporting agencies will have to correct the information without proof that the specific charge is theft. To protect yourself, you can freeze your credit report so that it cannot be pulled to give to anyone. Get a new drivers licenses with a new number, and reopen bank accounts so that your numbers are new. Report all credit cards lost or stolen to receive completely new numbers.  Hire a criminal defense lawyer for charges If someone has stolen your identity and is going by your name, the police may be at your door or you may find a warrant for your arrest that you knew nothing about. If this happens, the person that you need to hire is a criminal law attorney. They will be able to help prove that the charges were committed by someone else by taking over the discovery process of the court case. Once the charges are dismissed, you may be able to file a civil case against the person who stole your identity or turn over the information to the police to pursue criminal charges. Keep in contact with the police Have the police investigate the person that stole your identity. The police can investigate and help to determine where the person came across your identity and their steps after taking your identity. This can lead you to information that helps you to clear up issues that you didn’t know the person created. Staying in touch with the officer who worked on your case can help you start over and cut any issues that may come...

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