I will sometimes find myself in situations where I realize I should know how to cope with the situation, but I don’t. For example, when I need to jump someone else’s car battery or when I need to put a spare tire on my car. It’s not a coincidence that both of the above examples are car-related. Following that same theme, I realized I also didn’t know what to do should I ever get in a car accident, so I decided to look into it a bit should that ever happen.

Call the Police

First, you will need to reach out to the police, especially if your accident is serious. An officer will evaluate the scene of your accident, record data, and create a police report. You’ll need the police report later. This report is important for the insurance companies, as well as your lawyer if you choose to seek legal representation.

A copy of the police report for your accident will be available for you to pick up. There is often a small fee associated with collecting a police report, and the location of your accident will dictate where the report is available. For example, they are typically available at DMVs and police stations, but you will need to double-check for your specific case.

Take Notes and Pictures

If you are in a medical condition that permits you to do so, take pictures of the damage to your car as well as the other cars involved. This concrete proof will be helpful for any legal or insurance disputes moving forward.

Go to The Hospital

If you have any symptoms or issues following the accident it is important to seek medical attention as soon as you can. Not only will this allow you to have your injuries addressed, but it can also be important later if you sue the other driver for your injuries. When you are at the hospital, be honest about how your injuries came to pass.

Call Your Insurance Company

Notify your car insurance company about the accident. They will likely be hearing from the insurers of the other people involved in the accident, but it is best if you give them a heads up of what has occurred.

Seek Legal Representation

If you have been injured in an accident, with the help of an attorney, you stand to receive a more favorable settlement than you may without one. Insurance companies tend to offer lower settlements to accident victims who represent themselves. Information found on the website of Myrtle Beach Attorney, William J. Luse mentions that many injury lawyers work on a contingency basis, which means that you don’t pay them unless they win.

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Its a cliche to say it, but people make mistakes. Sometimes, they make multiple mistakes. In those cases, its generally felt that people deserve another chance. Perhaps they have to suffer some amount of punishment, but we dont want to make them live with a mistake their whole lives. It was, after all, a mistake, something we all make from time to time.

We all believe that on some level, repeating the same cliche, and yet its incredibly rare to see people actually advocate for second chances when it comes to criminal justice.

This is a little bizarre in that this is the area that most requires that need. Plenty of people make mistakes in their youth or out of desperation that require some amount of punishment, but that should be limited enough that the person can then find a way to return to normal life.

Consider the case of burglary. That can be a fairly serious mistake, and yet, it is often enough just that – a mistake in judgment, an act done on impulse, or a moment of desperation. For all that, the penalties can be extremely tough, even if the person only did this one time!

According to the Bruno Law Offices in Champaign, Illinois, the law can be incredibly tough on first time offenders here. Depending on what location was burgled, the penalty can be anywhere from two to five years (for the lowest level punishment) to up to fifteen years and up to $25,000 in fines. That level of punishment, for those who have made a mistake, is simply not reasonable.

This is all the more true when it isnt always clear how guilty the person being punished is. As the Bruno Law Offices point out elsewhere, the person accused has to be proved to be on the property without permission (often a little hazy), in a state of mind to know what they were doing (also questionable in many cases), and finally attempting to steal from that property.

Imagine a case of someone who was intoxicated and on the property of someone that they knew vaguely. Sometimes, that person might be picked up for burglary and have their lives ruined when they were in fact making no attempt to commit the crime they were accused of. As bad as it is not to grant second chances to those who are guilty, the fact that a relatively innocent person could face such strict punishments without the help of a good lawyer is even worse.

Im of the mind that we have to always treat crime and mistakes with as much compassion as possible, always trying to see the damage it will do to the guilty (or the one suspected of guilt) as much as what has already been done to others.

We live in a country built on the idea of second chances. Thats why we need to do more to make sure our system allows for those second chances for everyone, even those who make big mistakes.

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Oil rig job

I’ve made a new friend recently, which wouldn’t be news normally, but this friend happens to have a job opportunity, which I find both tempting and intimidating.

The job is working on an oil rig.

Now, I’ve got no experience in this area—it’s not something I’ve ever considered doing before, not even close—but this new friend assures me that’s not important. His uncle runs a rig somewhere out in the ocean (he pointed in the direction, but that didn’t help much), and he (my friend) is going out to start work next month. And he (my friend still) wants company.

That’s how the job came about. We hit it off and since he enjoys hanging out, he offered me a place as well.

The offer has kind of blindsided me, to be honest. I always imagined I’d get a big job somehow, but I didn’t see it in this field. I had intended to go back to school, get into accounting or put them money down finally and become a lawyer. But school is so expensive these days, and I’m just not motivated enough. I like the idea of the money and prestige of big, fancy jobs, but I don’t actually care about the professions. I’d rather watch lawyers on TV than be one.

So, if this is my big job, the obvious choice would be to take it, right?

There are plenty of positives to consider. The money is excellent. It’s far more than I’d make anywhere on shore with the kind of work experience I have. And the scheduling is interesting. I’d work 14 12-hour days in a row and then have 21 days off. That’s a lot of time to get out in the world and spend my money. With money and a lot of time on my hands, I could save up and travel. Or I could save up for a house. Or maybe, I could just save up for that law degree or something similar.

But there are negatives as well. I’m not so excited about 14 days without sight of land, on a big metal island floating above the Atlantic. I’m not super excited about 12-hour days doing work I don’t understand either (though my friend says I’ll start with the easy stuff and get training).

And then, it’s not the safest job. I’ve seen Deepwater Horizon. It’d be one thing if that were an exception, but it seems to me, based on my research, that working an oil rig is always dangerous, every day, even when Mark Wahlberg isn’t around.

I just don’t know what to do, when it comes down to it. The idea is exciting and terrifying all at once. But, I think, when I really force myself to think over, that I just don’t have what it takes to do it.

I think I’ll pass. I just hope there’s another big job waiting for me out there.

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Bankruptcy is the legal solution that can help individuals or businesses with overwhelming debts regain control of their finances. An article posted in the website of the United States Courts says that a chapter 7 case begins with the debtor filing a petition with the bankruptcy court serving the area where the individual lives or where the business debtor is organized or has its principal place of business or principal assets. In addition to the petition, the debtor must also file with the court:

  • Schedules of assets and liabilities;
  • A schedule of current income and expenditures;
  • A statement of financial affairs; and
  • A schedule of executory contracts and unexpired leases.

Courts charge a $245 case filing fee, a $75 miscellaneous administrative fee, and a $15 trustee surcharge. Normally, the fees must be paid to the clerk of the court upon filing, however, with the court’s permission, individual debtors may pay in installments.

Filing bankruptcy will mean immediate cessation of whatever form of harassment (in the form of e-mails, phone calls, letters, text messages, lawsuits and others) law firms and debt collectors use to force debtors to make payments.

There are different options in the bankruptcy law, each intended to address a person’s or a business’ specific financial situation. Assessing your situation well is necessary so that you will know which bankruptcy chapter to file and whether you qualify under such chapter’s protection.

Chapter 7 bankruptcy, for instance, is a liquidation bankruptcy.  This is best for people or businesses that have properties, but whose income does not go above the stipulated limit set under the chapter. As the definition suggests, this law will require the liquidation of a few of your properties (you can choose specific properties, though, that should not be sold). The selling is to be done by a court-appointed trustee who will also use the amount earned to pay your creditors. Debts to be paid are only those categorized as non-dischargeable, such as court fines, alimony and student loans. Medical bills, business and personal loans, debts due to use of credit cards are called dischargeable debts, meaning, the court may free you from the obligation of still paying these.

One requirement this law has is the means test, which applicants need to pass. The means test is a way to determine if your income is low enough to qualify you to seek the protection of this chapter.

The Bradford Law Offices, PLLC, says that Chapter 7 is one of the most commonly sought forms of bankruptcy because it provides individuals with a way to discharge, or completely eliminate, many of their existing debts.  If you are suffering under the weight of unmanageable debt, Chapter 7 bankruptcy may be able to provide you with much-needed relief.


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Ensuring the Health of Workers through Clean Air and Proper Ventilation in the Workplace

Buildings constructed before 1980 usually used materials and equipment that contained asbestos, a highly elastic substance that is electricity, chemical, fire and heat resistant. Asbestos had earned the name “miracle substance” due to its superb characteristics, abundance, usefulness and cheapness. This special substance became widely used during the mid of the 20th century; it was usually mixed with other substances to make cement, generators, turbines, boilers, steam pipes, brakes and clutches, insulators, gaskets, hot water piping, furniture, appliances, construction materials and a hundred other different things.

Although totally useful, asbestos has ill-effects: Asbestosis, Lung Cancer and Mesothelioma.

Asbestos-containing materials (ACM) can release sharp, tiny fibers into the environment due to wear and tear or when they are disturbed. If inhaled, these fibers can be imbedded in the lungs, remain there and cause lethal damage.

With regard to the three known effects of inhaled asbestos:

  • Asbestosis. This is characterized by scarred lung tissues resulting to difficulty to inhale.
  • Lung Cancer. The risk of lung cancer increases due to further exposure to Asbestos and it can worsen due to exposure to tobacco smoke.
  • Mesothelioma, a form of chronic cancer that can affect the membrane linings of the abdominal organs and lungs, or the sacs surrounding the heart and the testis. It is considered rare, yet deadly.

One characteristic of mesothelioma that puts those diagnosed with it totally at the losing end is its extremely long latency period, which is 40 years or more (there are instances wherein the symptoms appear much faster, especially if the amount of asbestos one is exposed to and the amount of fibers inhaled are too great). Thus, by the time this deadly, chronic cancer becomes diagnosable, it would already have developed to a stage wherein no type of treatment is no longer possible.

According to the mesothelioma lawsuit attorneys of Williams Kherkher, “Anyone who worked with or around asbestos could develop one of the harmful forms of mesothelioma cancer, however, the following workers are more likely to have encountered asbestos in their careers:
construction workers, contract workers, factory employees, military personnel, and railroad workers.

To protect workers from the deadly effects of asbestos, the firm Robovent “Air quality is a critical issue for manufacturers. Fumes and particulates created by welding and other industrial manufacturing processes aren’t just unpleasant — they have real health and safety consequences.” Ensuring the safety of any type of work environment is necessary as the health of workers can be compromised in one where toxic materials, like asbestos, is present.

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