Litigation Requires a Steady Guiding Hand in order to be Conducted Successfully

Posted by on Jun 19, 2017 in Commercial Litigation | 0 comments

Wrongful termination, discharge or dismissal is one situation wherein termination of an employee from work violates not only the provisions of the employment law, but also the terms stipulated in an employment contract. All employees in the U.S. are protected by the Employee Rights against wrongful termination. These rights are based on:

  • Statutory Rights: these are mandated by the state or federal government and require an advance notice of the closure of or a facility or sizeable lay-offs (due to retrenchment), provision of unemployment insurance and protection through anti-retaliation and anti-discrimination laws;
  • Company Policy: states the provision of severance payment in case of company lay-offs; and,
  • Contract Rights: an employee’s individual contract with his/her employers which may be sheltered by a union/collective bargaining agreement.

If an employee sees foul play in losing his/her work, then the Wrongful Termination Law can be used to determine whether the termination was legal. The Wrongful Termination Law also provides possible remedies in cases of wrongful removal from work.

The usual reported causes of wrongful termination include discrimination, retaliation, refusal of employee to perform an illegal act (at the command of the employer), failure of employer to abide by the company’s policies on termination procedures and whistle blowing or complaining.

Besides wrongful termination, employers use two other means to terminate an employee or to make an employee resign voluntarily (to hide intent of illegal termination):

  • Constructive dismissal – a voluntary decision (by the employee) to quit from work arrived at due to the unbearable working conditions at the doings of the employer. These conditions may take the form of unconstructive changes in work and/or pay, harassment and/or discrimination. This voluntary resignation may be legally compared to wrongful discharge; the employee only needs to prove that he/she has quit work due to a breach of contract by the employer. The Employment Rights Act of 1996 states that any employee, who ends his/her employment contract due to the employer’s conduct, may be considered as illegally dismissed.
  • The “Employment at Will” Doctrine – simply means that any employee may be dismissed (even without notice) or can resign from work any time even without valid reason/s. There are circumstances, though, which will render this doctrine not applicable, such as if the employee is covered by a contract of employment, a company policy that provides termination procedure or a collective bargaining agreement.

According to Tucson commercial law attorneys of Russo, Russo & Slania, P.C., “The modern world of business can often be extraordinarily fast-paced, and success is frequently determined by who can respond quickest to changes in market conditions. Unfortunately, when a business or company becomes involved in litigation, it can quickly absorb the focus needed for business operations. Resolving these types of issues quickly and effectively is, therefore, of paramount importance.

Litigation requires a steady guiding hand in order to be conducted successfully, and the assistance of qualified legal counsel in these matters is essential. If you are involved in any form of litigation know that business or commercial litigation attorneys know how much the outcome matters to you and your business, thus, they will work tirelessly to achieve the results you deserve.

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What Constitutes a Viable Slip and Fall Case

Posted by on Jun 18, 2017 in Premises Liability | 0 comments

A slip and fall accident happens when a person slips and injuries himself. The owner of the property where the accident has occurred may be held accountable for the damages, such as for the victim’s medical expenses, lost wages for losing time at work, and other financial burdens.

This is because of a legal concept called premises liability, wherein property owners are required to make their premises safe. Any act of negligence that has resulted into an accident can turn into a lawsuit. But what makes a slip and fall case viable?

Property owner has caused the slip and fall hazard

For a slip and fall case to be legitimate and winnable, an important factor to have is that the property owner has directly caused the slip and fall hazard. These hazards can take on many forms, such as defective escalators and elevators, slippery materials applied or left on the floor, tripping dangers like extension cords, and even trash and debris.

These hazards can occur because of many reasons, such as those mentioned in the website of Hach & Rose: the failure to adhere to safety regulations and failure to remove or warn of materials or debris on walkways.

A reasonable time has elapsed for the hazard to be seen and fixed

Negligence on the side of the property owner is the most important aspect of a slip and fall case. This negligence mostly manifests in two ways. First is the creation of the slip and fall hazard, as said earlier. Second is the failure to see or the lack of initiative to fix the hazard.

This second manifestation can happen on many instances, like when the property owner has failed to maintain its facilities, resulting into defects, or has failed to see problems just because of the lack of supervision.

A person has been hurt because of the unseen or unfixed hazard

For a slip and fall case to be truly viable, someone has to be hurt, resulting into various damages that could have been prevented if the property owner has not caused a slip and fall hazard and has failed to see or fix the hazard.

The website of the Sampson Law Firm has expanded on these possible damages:

  • Medical and rehabilitative care to recover
  • Unearned income during recovery
  • Long-term diminishment in quality of life
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Most Common Forms of Employment Discrimination

Posted by on Mar 9, 2017 in Employee Discrimination | 0 comments

Employment discrimination occurs if a person has experienced unwarranted disadvantages because of his or her personal features, such as gender and race. Discrimination occurs both in the hiring process and in the work environment. The hiring process may be compromised because of discrimination, such as not wanting to hire an applicant because of personal features. The work environment can be compromised in the aspect of promotions, mistreatments, and terminations.

According to the website of Cary Kane, LLP, it is illegal for employers to engage in employment discrimination because of an employee’s race, color, gender, national origin, ethnic identity, and religion. This just proves that the law knows the negative effects of discrimination in society.

Retaliation
This is one of the most common forms of discrimination. This manifests itself as fear of getting fired, demoted, or receiving any kind of negative consequence for complaining against an employer. Employees have rights to complain, especially if they have ethical or moral concerns about the employers. In these cases, threats such as termination are therefore discriminatory.

Sex
This kind of discrimination occurs if an employer treats an employee differently just because of the employee’s sex and gender preference. This can also manifest in the hiring process, where employers may have the tendency to prefer one gender over the other. Issues concerning sexual harassment and pregnancy can also count as sex discrimination.

Race and Color
Employers should not consider race, color, national origin, ethnic identity, and other similar aspects of a person when it comes to hiring processes, compensation offers, scheduling of shifts, assigning of tasks, and other important factors in the work environment. Harassment that is focused on such aspects are also considered discriminatory.

Age
Employees must have equal benefits, despite their disparities in terms of age. In the hiring process, age preferences, age brackets for internships, and other age-related methods are also considered discriminatory. Age discrimination is not exclusive for the young, as even the old can face age discrimination, like when they are not hired because they may be too old even though they are fully qualified for the job.

Other Forms of Discrimination
Above are just some of the most common forms of discrimination in the workplace, but there are subtler forms, such as those that involve unequal pay despite equal efforts and accomplishments, preference toward more physically-abled employees, and bias against those who have disabilities or limitations.

In a moral perspective, employment should be based on qualification alone, and not on personal features, especially features that employees have no control over, like gender, race, and age.

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The Dangers of Distracted Driving

Posted by on Oct 14, 2016 in Distracted Driving | 0 comments

Car accidents happen with alarming frequency all over the United States. According to 2015 data released by the National Safety Council, the last year saw the highest percentage increase in fatal traffic accidents. The numbers show that over 38,000 people were killed in car accidents and about 4.4 million people sustained injuries that needed medical attention.

Plenty of factors contribute to making American roads more and more dangerous. Among these factors are distracted driving, which is considered as one of the most common causes for fatal crashes in recent years. As noted by both the U.S. Department of Transportation and National Highway Safety Administration, distracted driving caused more that 3,000 deaths in 2013. Most of these accidents were caused by drivers that were texting or otherwise using their smartphones.

The use of mobile phones can result in particularly devastating accidents because it typically takes up so much of a driver’s attention. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention points out that there are three different components to distracted driving: visual distraction, manual distraction, and cognitive distraction. The first refers to moments when a driver takes their eyes off the road, while the second refers to when a driver takes their hands off the wheel. The last type of distraction refers to when a driver becomes focuses their attention on something else other than the vehicle they’re operating. The use of smartphones while driving can lead to serious injuries because it encompasses all three components of distracted driving.

As with any car crashes, distracted driving accidents can to long-term consequences and serious injuries. In these situations, the car accident attorneys at Zavodnick, Zavodnick & Lasky, LLC emphasize the importance of seeking effective legal counsel. If you or someone you know have been hurt in a distracted driving incident, you should know that you have every right to seek just compensation for the trauma and suffering you’ve endured.

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How To File A Workplace Injury Claim

Posted by on Jun 24, 2016 in Workplace Injuries | 0 comments

Employees assume that the workplace is a safe environment. It is the responsibility of the employer to provide their workers with a safe and conducive working environment. When an employee gets injured at work, they have grounds for filing a workplace injury claim. The law provides employees with the right to file a claim for any injuries they will incur. Both employer and employee have the responsibility to ensure that the filing is facilitated smoothly. In this article, we shall take a look at the workplace injury claim process.

Employer

In the first place, it is the job of the employer to ensure the safety of employees by providing them with a safe place to work. In case of workplace injury, the employer must ensure that they complete a First Report of Injury and submit it to their workers’ compensation provider. In addition, they must ensure that they do not violate any laws or rights of the injured employee. They should let them get medical attention for serious injuries or leave work to consult their personal doctor.

The employer also has the responsibility to cooperate with their carrier during the investigation of the accident. This includes providing them with a copy of the employee’s personnel file, letting them talk to the supervisor or some co-workers to confirm the accident. Whatever the employer can do to facilitate the process, they should do so.

Employee

On the other hand, it is the job of the employee to ensure that they act responsibly while in the workplace. Reporting for work while intoxicated, committing a crime, or willingly violating a policy or code may disqualify the employee from whatever compensation they can claim.

A workplace injury should be reported right away or at the soonest time possible to your employer or immediate supervisor. Make sure that your employer files a report for your injury. Ensure the accuracy of such report and provide yourself with a copy for your own records. Not reporting right away may result to difficulty in getting benefits.

Cooperate with any requests that your insurance company will require from you. If they ask that you consult a physician for examination, go and have yourself checked. This will erase any doubts for your refusal not to be examined by a doctor.

Lastly, the employee should act responsibly after an injury. According to the website of the Law Offices of Yvonne M. Fraser, insurance companies will be keeping their eyes on you if you have sustained an injury already. They will know if you have faked an injury or exaggerated it.

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