Wrong-Way Driver, Narrow Miss

Wrong-Way Driver, Narrow Miss

​Fortunately, not all mishaps on the road result in serious accidents. Recently, a potentially tragic set of circumstances turned into a narrow miss in Mesa, Arizona, when a driver going the wrong way on US 60 was able to correct himself. Cause Uncertain In the early morning hours of April 9, 2017, ...

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Top Things to Consider Before You Make A Wrongful Death Claim

Top Things to Consider Before You Make A Wrongful Death Claim

It is very difficult to come to terms with the loss of a loved one. Families go through a terrible phase while coping with such a huge tragedy in their lives. When a person's life is lost to due to the careless and negligent action of others, it can become even more difficult to deal with the pain and loss. Even when families do come out of the grief, the sense of unfairness and injustice to their lost member prevails. But it doesn't have to be that way. With some legal help, one can expect to get relief to some extent by suing the responsible party. Read on to know more.

What is Wrongful Death?

When a person loses his/her life due to the negligent and wrongful actions of another person or entity (defendant), it is said to be a wrongful death. In such cases, the surviving family members of the deceased have the right to file a wrongful death lawsuit against those responsible for the death. This type of a lawsuit seeks to provide compensation to the survivors for their loss. The compensation could be in keeping with lost wages, funeral expenses and even lost companionship. This may vary from state to state as each state has its own wrongful death laws.

Who can file the Lawsuit?

The deceased person's surviving family members can sue for wrongful death. They would be called the "real parties in interest." The claim has to be filed by a representative of the real parties in interest. Again, the laws and exactly which members of the family can be included in the real parties of interest may differ from state to state. Some of those people could be:

● Immediate family members: The immediate family members could be the decedent's parents, spouse and children - biological or adopted. This is true for all states.

● Distant family members: In some states, the brothers, sisters and grandparents can file for the claim.

● All financial sufferers: In some states, all parties affected financially (for care and support) by the victim's wrongful death can sue the responsible person, even if they are not related by blood or marriage to the victim.

● Life partner/putative spouse: In some states, a life partner who was financially dependent on the decedent or a putative (generally considered or reputed to be) spouse can claim compensation.

● Parents of deceased fetus: In most cases, parents can claim wrongful death action only if the child was born alive and died later due to negligence. However, some states allow the death of a fetus to also become the foundation of a wrongful death claim.

Who can be sued?

A case of wrongful death can be claimed against a person responsible for the victim's death, a company responsible for the death, government agencies and employees responsible for the death. Depending from state to state, government agencies and employees can be given immunity against such cases. A wrongful death can occur due to various reasons - death due to medical malpractice, death due to criminal behavior, death due to occupational exposure to harmful conditions and substances, death due to an automobile or airplane mishap, and death during a supervised activity.

What are the types of damages that can be claimed?

There are three types of damages that can be claimed by the decedent's survivors:

● Economic damages: These refer to the value of the financial contributions that the victim could have made to the survivors had he/she been alive. Additionally, it also includes loss of victim's expected wages, loss of victim's pension and medical benefits, victim's funeral expenses, loss of an inheritance due to the victim's untimely death and value of goods and services the victim could have provided were he/she alive.

● Non-economic damages: These refer to the non-financial aspects like damages for survivor's pain and emotional turmoil, loss of care/support/protection/advice/guidance from the decedent, loss of love, society and companionship from the decedent and loss of consortium from the decedent.

● Punitive damages: Depending from state to state, these damages can be recovered by the defendant  who has displayed a bad conduct. In some cases, the victim's survivors can also get reimbursed for the costs they incurred for bringing in the claim. Some states also have a provision for the payment of interest on the damages to the survivors from the time it starts to the time it is collected.

The loss of a loved one can cause irreparable damage to a family. No amount of compensation or reimbursement can make up for the loss incurred. However, it is important to bring all those responsible for the loss to justice for the survivor's peace of mind. Bringing in wrongful death claims can also help in decreasing the number of the same kind of unfortunate incidents.

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What skills are required to become a lawyer?

Increasingly, law firms and chambers recruit applicants who have a portfolio of specific skills to equip them to succeed in legal practice. When talking to the graduate recruitment managers of leading law firms about what they look for in desirable candidates, there are qualities that come up time and time again. Law firms spend a phenomenal amount of time and money in searching for the most talented students; developing their trainees to become talented lawyers and future partners of the firm. This is why they have spent a great deal of time considering what attributes make the "brightest talent", and invariably seek to recruit only the very best and most able people. Law firms / chambers do not expect you to be the finished article, but are looking for "projected ability" and real potential. It would be naive to assume that every employer is looking for precisely the same attributes, but aspiring lawyers must be able to demonstrate certain discernible skills both to succeed as a solicitor / barrister and to operate effectively in the competitive professional and business world. These skills include:

*A stellar academic record: Law firms seek to recruit students who have achieved excellent academic grades consistently throughout their education. The work of a lawyer is intellectually rigorous, demanding and you must be able to show that you have the intelligence and ability to absorb, assimilate and analyse complex material very quickly. Recruiters will base your ability to cope with such demands, on the marks you have achieved at school and university; as they view your academic grades as one of the key indicators of intellect and a benchmark of your capability, which is why the reputable commercial law firms request the very best qualifications.
 
The minimum entrance requirement for securing a training contract at the leading commercial firms are typically a 2:1 degree, often accompanied by a further request of three A grades at A-level to further refine the academic criteria of their recruitment process. That's not to say that it is impossible to get a training contract with a 2:2, just that you either (i) have to be able to show that are capable of better, but due to mitigating factors (for example, illness or bereavement) you were unable to achieve your full potential, or (ii) have to do further research to find those firms for whom the 2:1 isn't a pre-requisite for employment.
 
However, law firms have become aware that strong academics alone will not make a successful lawyer and thus look for other skills. For example, achievement in sport, commercial experience, interesting hobbies, and language skills can provide you with a strong competitive edge in the legal recruitment market.

 
Our Top Tip:  Balance your academic studies with extra-curricular activities from other areas of your life, to illustrate you are a well-rounded person with lots to offer. This will almost certainly impress recruiters.
 

 

*Teamwork: One of the most important skills you'll need to be a successful solicitor is the ability to be a useful member of a team. When applying, ensure that you highlight examples that show you're are a good team player and leader during university and your past work experiences. At law firms you will need to be a good team player because teamwork is a very important to get-on in your legal career. 

 

Teamwork consists of working with others to form a consensus and reach the best possible outcome for all parties, whether in transactions, mediations or arbitrations. Negotiations are based around working with teams which often not only includes working with your colleagues in your department, but those from other groups to form multi-disciplinary teams, which also has input by the client and other professionals. The ability to work collaboratively and effectively with others is of fundamental importance to working successfully at a law firm.

 
*Interpersonal skills - Any lawyer must be able to communicate effectively with their client. Your ability to relate and interact with others in such a way as to engender confidence, form lasting relationships, and clearly explain complex situations in a clear manner is integral to the role of a solicitor. In addition, having good "people skills" will help you to interact with a wide variety of characters at your firm and fit into the culture of the firm.
 
At times, you will need to tap into the know-how of different people in order to get-on. For example, the librarians and secretaries play such a pivotal role in the daily function of a law firm. If you build up a good rapport with your secretary, your work may be placed on the top of the pile and your work turnaround quickly, which will impress your supervisor. 
 
The most successful lawyers tend to be personable and able to work effectively with people by cultivating, building, developing and maintaining relationships with clients and colleagues alike. As you progress through your career, your firm will expect you to build up a list of contacts and eventually win new business. Marketing opportunities are very important and you need to be able to show clients that as well as being a solid legal technician, you are also "good value" in a social context.

 
*Communication - Being able to communicate clearly and effectively on paper or face-to-face or over the telephone underpins the role of a solicitor. This is because the role of a solicitor largely involves being able to advise and negotiate effectively with their client and the other side to ensure a deal runs smoothly. The use of clear and succinct language will be valued by both your clients and colleagues. Client care is fundamental and possessing excellent communication skills will help you to communicate ideas and advice to your clients.

 
*Commercial acumen - Based on talking to recruiters up and down the country this is the single most desirable attribute employers look for in a future trainee, and is becoming more and more important for modern day legal practice. Trainee solicitors are expected to emerge not only as good lawyers, but as sound business advisors as well. Commercial awareness, simply put, is developing an understanding of the business environment in which law firms and their clients operate. Aspiring lawyers must be able to appreciate the role of a commercial lawyer and the commercial context in which they provide the legal advice.
 
The best way to demonstrate that you have what it takes to cut it as a commercial lawyer is to demonstrate your ability to think commercially, and from a client's perspective as early as possible. As a commercial lawyer you need to understand your clients' businesses in order to give them the best legal advice. Recruiters will look for candidates who have a keen understanding of the business world.
 
A commercial client will not care about the technical meaning of legal terminology, but she will be deeply interested in the impact that it may have on the transaction at hand. For City firms especially, legal advice always takes on a business element and every student needs to be commercially aware, so that you will be able to contextualise legal advice to the client. For more information - go to Demystifying commercial awareness.

 
* Commitment and dedication to a legal career - With intense competition for places, it is vital students can demonstrate a long-term commitment to a career in law, which can be shown through work experience. It is important that you acquire work experience in both a legal and commercial environment to evidence your interest, enthusiasm and motivation for pursuing a legal career.
 

*Attention to detail - When lawyers draft contracts, a single word in the wrong place can change the emphasis of a clause and possibly the outcome for your client. A lawyer is expected to have a thorough, accurate and meticulous approach to their work. Committing any glaring grammatical or punctuation mistakes on your application form is the easiest way to fast track your application to the rejection pile.
 

*Honesty and integrity - Clients expect lawyers to work to a high moral standard, total professional integrity and ethical code, because they will only instruct solicitors they trust. Solicitors' professional conduct rules are strict guidelines ensuring lawyers always act in their clients' best interests; client confidentiality and professionalism are paramount to safeguarding the reputation and standards of the legal profession.

 
* Pro-activity - Firms like applicants who display initiative and a get up and go. They are also impressed by candidates who value their skills and strengths. This can be demonstrated by the way in which you apply to the firm. For example, aspiring lawyers rarely seem to ask law firms for unpaid work experience; shadowing a solicitor is a really good way of gaining an insight into legal practice, and follows the proviso that, once you impress the solicitor and other professionals at the firm - they will offer you a job.

 
* Ambition - Many aspiring lawyers are extremely ambitious, determined and driven. In such a competitive business, you should have a clear and realistic plan of where you imagine your career heading in the next five to ten years, and whether it is your aspiration to become a partner at a law firm, or a senior counsel in-house at a global blue-chip company.

 
*Image is vital - Project a professional and businesslike personal brand. Your attitude and source of motivation for becoming a lawyer is really important; before a firm commits to employing you, they will want to be sure that their clients will see you in a positive way. First impressions always count for so much. Even when completing your application forms, so take your time over your applications and carefully consider the image you are conveying.
 
* Enthusiasm and Energy - Demonstrate a real interest for the firm you are applying to, and the type of work they do. Your passion will enable you to talk about the firm and the reasons for your application in a vibrant way. You will naturally come across as highly-motivated applicant that will fit in and do well at the firm.

* Individuality - Always be yourself and do not try to be someone that you think firms are looking for. Firms don't want order-following clones on the career treadmill! They want to see a variety of individual personalities with sparky characters.  At interviews, always give answers that are personal and unique to

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Blog Posts Vs Directory Submisison for Law Sites

After testing 3 months of link building power of blog commenting Vs. directory submission, and, spending same time spent on each methods (blog commenting and directory submission), the results are clear : Blog commenting for your law sites is more effective than directory submission.

Lets clear some facts; Directory submission is not a waste of time, but if you can't do both for your law site, you should focus on blog commenting because it produces better results for the same investment. For both methods we used the best tools available to maximize efficiency.

After 3 months PageRank 1 was achieved for the law site which had links built from directories and PageRank3 for the site linked from blog comments. Why was that?

Observation 1 : 30% approvals were received in directories vs. 80% in blogs.
Why ? Because most directories (the free ones) are dead and no longer updated. We got some better results in the new launched directories but those back links don't have too much weight because those directories are new.

Since, you can select active blogs, with approved comments in the last 48 hours, 80%+ of your comments produced back links.

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How To Use A Blog?

We hear of success stories on a daily basis regarding the use of a simple tool like blog, from micro businesses to large corporations. Yet, despite this, the majority of people running businesses still overlook the myriad ways that a blog can be used in their business.

The good news is that, when trying to find out how you can implement a blog as part of your business website, or as a standalone site, most of the time if you look long and hard enough, you will find a way a blog can fit in. After all, a blog is just another website with interesting features like automatic archiving, commenting, easy management and publishing. And what business doesn’t need those features?

To save you time, though, here are a list of common blog application ideas:

* Content management system (CMS) - Albeit far from a full blown CMS, a blog is more than enough for small to medium size businesses for managing content. Some blog software allow multiple authors, multiple blogs and static pages. This actually means more flexibility as a usable CMS.

* Company news and updates - Blog software sort blog entries chronologically: the most recent entry appears at the top of the page. Anyone who can write e-mail can post to a company blog, skipping the tedious workflow.

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