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West Palm Beach Legal Blog

If your employer misclassifies you as an independent contractor

Contract jobs—also called consultancies—are permeating the job market. More than ever before, job seekers are finding that contract work is the norm—while finding work as an employee is increasingly difficult.

One reason employers often prefer to hire independent contractors over employees is the cost savings to the company. Employers do not have to pay for independent contractors’ benefits—including health coverage, paid time off, overtime pay and workers’ compensation.

How the U.S. Social Security Administration defines “disability”

People who suffer from an injury or disability so severe that it prevents them from working may wonder whether they are eligible for Social Security benefits from the U.S. Social Security Administration. Reserved for Americans with the most serious, debilitating conditions, Social Security benefits are monthly payments meant to help people provide for themselves.

Whether you will obtain Social Security benefits on account of your disability, however, depends on certain factors tied to your situation. The primary determining factor in whether you gain access to these benefits is whether you meet the administration’s definition of “disability.”

Car accidents: The devastating impact of spinal cord injuries

Everyone knows how dangerous cars cans be, yet careless drivers cause collisions every day. Car accidents are a significant cause of spinal cord trauma in the West Palm Beach area. Most drivers follow the law and courtesies of the road and assume that other motorists will too. Unfortunately, some vehicle operators seem to have no regard for how their actions can affect them and others. Distractions, inebriation, unruly passengers and fatigue are several of the many factors that lead to motor vehicle collisions and spinal cord injuries

The truth is, no matter how safe and responsibly you drive, you cannot control what other motorists do. Take some time to learn how spinal cord injuries can alter your life in ways you may not conceive. It is essential for you to know what is at stake in a motor vehicle collision that injures your spine. 

The do’s and don’ts of using a car seat

Having a baby brings with it many new questions that you’ve never before considered. What’s the trick to making your little one sleep through the night? What’s the right age to start potty training? What kind of car seat should you get, and what’s the proper way to use it?

On the latter point, it’s worth noting that the standard guidelines to optimize car seat safety have recently been revised. In today’s post, we outline these core changes.

How do you prove a driver was distracted?

Distracted driving is one of the deadliest hazards you can encounter on the road. Most drivers are well-aware of the danger that texting and driving presents. There are endless other forms of distraction, too, which can be equally detrimental to your ability to drive safely. If you have been a victim of an accident caused by such a driver, you may wonder how you can prove distraction to establish liability in court.

If your accident case escalates to litigation, a few ways exist that legally prove a driver's distraction. The following are three examples of potential methods of establishing that a driver was distracted.

OSHA imposes fines in wake of deadly Miami bridge collapse

The federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration, or OSHA, recently announced a fine of over $85,000 against several contractors who, collectively, were responsible for work on an infamous Florida pedestrian bridge.

This fine only pertained to OSHA's findings that these contractors had violated several of the agency's rules that were designed to protect workers from injuries. Other penalties are possible, although sources indicate criminal charges are unlikely.

Can I still get Social Security if I file suit?

There are actually multiple ways to get compensation after a serious motor vehicle accident. If the accident was work-related, then workers' compensation may pay for some or even most of the victim's injuries.

As this blog has discussed on many occasions, the victim of a West Palm Beach car accident can also sue the other driver involved if that driver caused or contributed to the accident. A lawsuit can help a victim recover expenses, including non-economic losses, that workers' compensation might not provide.

A follow-up to the most dangerous highway in America

We recently discussed the road safety rankings of several noteworthy Florida highways. Of course, car accidents can happen anywhere from quiet suburban streets to the busiest highways. All drivers need to remain vigilant no matter where they are. The majority of accidents do not occur on highways and freeways, but there is still good reason to stay cognizant of which stretches of road have the worst safety record.

In light of further information concerning Florida's I-4, here is a description of the sections you particularly need to watch out for: 

If a trucker broke federal rules, can I recover damages?

Oftentimes, when a truck accident happens in the West Palm Beach area, it is because the truck driver or trucking company broke one or more of the many state and federal regulations that truckers must follow.

There are special rules about how long a trucker can be on the road, what safety features the truck must have and the like that are designed to keep both truckers and other motorists safe, and it is no surprise that when these rules are broken, serious truck accidents are the end result.

Do you need a lawyer if a crash only led to car damage?

Car accidents can seem more significant than they actually are because the media tends to focus on the most extreme cases. Take a recent news story in Florida about a crash on Interstate 75 that led to two fatalities. Reports like this might lead one to believe that every collision ends in serious injury or death.

The truth of the matter is that most auto accidents lead to few, if any, injuries and minimal damage. You may feel fine after a collision and only see damage to the car. While most people will assume that they do not need an attorney in this instance, it may still work to your advantage to hire a lawyer. 

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