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Evansville Legal Issues Blog

Car accidents: awakening to sleep-deprived driving

A recent study showed that motorists are driving while sleep-deprived without even knowing it. This increases the risk of car accidents in Indiana and nationwide, and increases the need for a solution to a long-standing problem.

Researchers from Boston's Brigham and Women's Hospital concluded that two common problems cause nightly sleep deprivation. First, there is insufficient sleep duration where an adult did not have the recommended hours of sleep for the evening. The second cause is obstructive sleep apnea. This condition is difficulty with breathing, involving constant starting and stopping, that diminishes the length and quality of sleep.

Distracted drivers are threatening traffic safety

Indiana residents may be interested to hear that the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety issued its 10th annual report on traffic safety culture last month. Its survey of licensed drivers last fall was unsettling, because it showed the prevalence of unsafe behavior, such as distracted driving, and its potential to increase the risk of car accidents in Indiana and throughout this country.

Over one in five drivers reported that they were involved in a major car crash where someone went to the hospital. Additionally, 11.1 percent of these respondents were seriously injured in a car accident. Almost one in three motorists also said that they had a relative who was killed or seriously injured in a motor vehicle accident.

Indiana licensing law removes criminal record obstacle

A criminal record can have long-term consequences, such as blocking access to certain jobs. Although every citizen has the right to mount a strong criminal defense, 1.19 million people in Indiana or one in four adults in this state have an arrest or conviction record.

In 2015, Indiana released 16,074 people from prison. Obtaining family-sustaining jobs is important for returning these individuals to society after they served their sentences. The state General Assembly recently removed one obstacle to these citizens by restricting the impact of convictions for occupational licenses.

Securing quality employment after a conviction

Everyone makes mistakes, and for some people those mistakes can follow them throughout their lives. Particularly in cases where people commit criminal offenses, those actions can negatively impact them moving forward. 

Many people struggle with transition back into regular life after serving time. In efforts to secure quality employment after a conviction, there are a few things to consider.

Indiana's wrongful death law challenged

Families who suffer the loss of a loved one in Indiana cannot seek damages for the victim's pain and suffering. They cannot recover more than $300,000 from a negligent person for the loss of companionship and love from the deceased person. A recent nursing home neglect and wrongful death lawsuit seeks to overturn these limitations under the state's Adult Wrongful Death act.

The action was filed in Howard County against a Rochester nursing home facility after the death of patient who suffered a serious head injury. The victim's family names numerous corporations and individuals who were allegedly responsible for care at the facility. It is owned by a for-profit corporation based in Cleveland, Tennessee, which owns or manages over 220 skilled nursing homes across the country.

Diagnosing medical malpractice

Medical care is intended to alleviate sickness and suffering. However, negligent treatment can cause preventable death or injury and form the basis of a wrongful death lawsuit in Indiana and elsewhere. A recent report blames diagnostic errors as the biggest source of medical malpractice claims from 2013 to 2017.

According to the report, published by the malpractice service provider Coveys, patient diagnosis errors were related to 33 percent of these claims. Poor clinical decisions were involved with over half of those malpractice claims.

Shower death leads to wrongful death lawsuit

Fatal accidents caused by negligence can happen in the most unexpected places and even in locations that are supposed to be monitored and especially safe. In one case, the family of a nursing home resident filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the Kokomo facility after a resident died from injuries suffered in a fall in the shower room.

Child support calculations for military service members

Separation is difficult, especially when it involves children. There are certain procedures and regulations in place to help make sure that even though parents are splitting up, children maintain a level of stability.

If you are considering or undergoing separation or divorce, and you or your ex-partner serve in the military, there are a few rules that you should be aware of, particularly in regards to calculating child support.

Pedestrian auto accidents remain high last year

Following a dramatic rise in pedestrian fatalities in 2015 and 2016, preliminary figures indicate that there was a drop of only one half of 1 percent in pedestrian deaths in 2017. The Governor's Highway Safety Administration, which issued this recent report, estimated that 5,984 pedestrians were killed in car accidents last year based on its review of statistics for the first part of the year.

According to earlier reports, the number of pedestrian deaths rose by 27 percent from 2007 to 2016. However, all other traffic fatalities dropped by 14 percent. Pedestrians now make up a larger proportion of traffic deaths, 16 percent in 2016, than they had over the past 33 years. The nation has not experienced this level of fatal pedestrian injuries for over 25 years.

Motorcyclist files lawsuit over Harley brake problems

There may be many causes of accidents involving motorcycles, such as another reckless or inattentive driver. Defective equipment can also cause injuries.

Motorcyclists in Indiana may be interested in a personal lawsuit filed in Texas against Harley-Davidson concerning defective brakes. It followed, by a few days, the manufacturer's announced recall of motorcycles for brake problems.

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