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December 4th, 2013
December 4, 2013
In recent years, Louisiana has reported a decrease in the number of on-the-job accidents that result in workers’ compensation claims. The Louisiana Workers Compensation Lawyers with Dudley DeBosier Injury Lawyers point out that this decrease has led to the National Council on Compensation Insurance (NCCI) to call for insurance rates in Louisiana to be lowered next year.
An article released by Business Insurance states the NCCI found that in 2011, the frequency of claims for workers compensation based on time lost from the job fell by 5.8 percent when compared to the previous year’s total. These numbers have prompted the organization to call for insurers to decrease rates by 5.1 percent. The number was determined as an average of cuts from several different industries.
The calls for a rate decrease came in spite of data that indicated the severity of the average medical claim had risen “modestly” over the past year and insurer ratios remaining high.
If the Louisiana Department of Insurance accepts the recommendations that were made by the NCCI, the changes would take effect on May 1st of next year.
Dudley DeBosier’s team of Louisiana Personal Injury Lawyers recognize how complex the processes and regulations overseeing workers compensation can be. That is why the firm is here to help anyone who has been injured while on-the-job at no fault of their own.
November 27th, 2013
November 27, 2013
Employees in the oil and chemical production industries face serious dangers every time they show up for work. A recent study found that the 17 refineries and two associated chemical plants in the state experience an accident almost every day of the week.
The Louisiana Plant Explosion Lawyers point out researchers found these particular facilities experienced a total of 327 accidents over the course of a one-year period, meaning the state saw an accident rate of 6.3 incidents per week. More disturbing though, is the fact that most experts contend this number is underreported.
According to an article from Grist, the accident numbers used in the study were culminated from accident reports that were filed by the refineries and chemical plants after an incident occurred. However, researchers believe accidents at the facilities are often covered up to prevent punishment and improve safety ratings.
An example of such a cover up is when a facility reported initially at least 10 pounds of benzene had been released into the atmosphere following an error, when in fact, as much as 31,000 pounds of the chemical was released.
These numbers leave many workers questioning what they can do to protect themselves from being injured in an on-the-job accident. Dudley DeBosier’s team of Louisiana Personal Injury Lawyers workers must demand more effective safety standards be adopted by the facilities. This can be achieved by contacting a qualified attorney if you suspect unsafe practices are occurring at the place where you work.
November 20th, 2013
November 20, 2013
Zoloft® is a prescription medication used in the treatment of patients suffering from depression and other mental health disorders. However, studies have shown the drug is linked to children of users being born with serious Zoloft® Birth Defects.
These injuries have led to numerous civil lawsuits being filed against the manufacturer of the drug, Pfizer, in state and federal court. An article from PharmaLive explains one of the latest lawsuits to be filed against the company was submitted from the Louisiana Attorney General’s Office.
Court documents show the suit alleges Pfizer engaged in illegal activities in order to suppress the dangers of the drug from doctors, government officials, and the public. These practices included masking the inefficiency of the drug and a massive placebo effect that was discovered during research on the drug. The company attempted to hide these findings by selectively releasing data that was collected during the study.
Pfizer is also accused of bribing doctors with expensive dinners in order bolster their support and endorsement of the medication.
Pfizer has stringently denied all of the claims that have been made against the company regarding business practices surrounding the distribution of Zoloft®.
The Louisiana Drug Injury Lawyers with Dudley DeBosier Injury Lawyers applaud the efforts being made to hold drug companies accountable for the injuries their products cause. The firm is hopeful to see more such efforts being made in the future.
November 13th, 2013
November 13, 2013
While the oil refineries and chemical plants in Louisiana are a critical staple to the nation’s energy needs, the accidents that occur at these facilities may be putting the health and safety of both workers and local residents at risk.
Records indicate the 17 refineries and two chemical plants in the state averaged six accidents per week last year. The Louisiana Plant Explosion Lawyers with Dudley DeBosier Injury Lawyers explain that besides the hundreds of immediate injuries these incidents resulted in, the 2.3 million pounds of pollution they released into the environment could have long-lasting negative effects on the health of local residents and workers.
According to an article from The Times-Picayune, the data was gathered by a host of agencies despite refineries and their associated facilities not submitting documentation in roughly 10 percent of accidents that occurred. The largest release of pollutants happened on May 8th, 2012, at Motiva Enterprises in Norco when 648,733 pounds of carbon monoxide was released into the atmosphere.
Experts agree that the findings show the need for officials, companies, and their workers to find more efficient ways for accidents to be reported to the proper authorities so that the damages they cause can be minimized.
Dudley DeBosier and their team of Louisiana Personal Injury Lawyers would also urge anyone who has been harmed as the result of an industrial accident to discuss their legal rights and options with an attorney as soon as possible.
November 11th, 2013
Veterans Day is a day to recognize the soldiers that have fallen, fought, or that are still fighting for our country, a day to reach out to our fellow veterans and say “We appreciate you.” The New Orleans personal injury attorneys at Dudley DeBosier also want to recognize what an important and empowering day today is, and would like to say thank you. Thank you for fighting for our freedom!
Veterans Day officially began on November 11, 1918 once the fighting of World War I – known at the time as “The Great War” was ceased. “The Great War” was fought between the Allies and the Central Powers that lasted from July 28, 1914- November 11, 1918 resulting in an Allied victory.
According to the U.S Department of Veterans Affairs:
The United States Congress officially recognized the end of World War I when it passed a concurrent resolution on June 4, 1926, with these words:
Whereas the 11th of November 1918, marked the cessation of the most destructive, sanguinary, and far reaching war in human annals and the resumption by the people of the United States of peaceful relations with other nations, which we hope may never again be severed, and
Whereas it is fitting that the recurring anniversary of this date should be commemorated with thanksgiving and prayer and exercises designed to perpetuate peace through good will and mutual understanding between nations; and
Whereas the legislatures of twenty-seven of our States have already declared November 11 to be a legal holiday: Therefore be it Resolved by the Senate (the House of Representatives concurring), that the President of the United States is requested to issue a proclamation calling upon the officials to display the flag of the United States on all Government buildings on November 11 and inviting the people of the United States to observe the day in schools and churches, or other suitable places, with appropriate ceremonies of friendly relations with all other peoples.
With offices throughout the state, the New Orleans personal injury lawyers at Dudley DeBosier are here to help. If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident through no fault of your own, please give us a call at 444-4444 to schedule a free consultation. Also, visit our website at www.dudleydebosier.com and check out our free apps Droid/ IPhone.
November 7th, 2013
Many clients are lost when it comes to handling their property damage claim (the damage done to your vehicle), especially those who have never been in an accident before. The first thing you should do is take your own pictures and make a list of all things you believe were damaged as a result of the accident. The object of this is to record the damages sustained in the accident for your own records, don’t simply rely on someone else to take pictures and/or tell you what was damaged. You are the one who drives this car every day and you will be most familiar with things that have changed or been damaged from the accident. Once you have taken pictures and made your list, I usually advise the client to go get at least 2 independent estimates from the repair facilities they may want to perform the repairs to their vehicle. You can choose the repair facility you are most comfortable with or that is most convenient for you, you are not obligated to use any specific shop. The importance of getting multiple estimates is two-fold; first, you’ll need to know approximately how much it will cost to actually repair your vehicle, don’t just rely on what the other party’s insurance company tells you it should cost, remember, their job is to save that insurance company money if possible. By obtaining your own estimates you’ll be educated on the actual cost of repair from the facility(ies) of your own choosing rather than the insurance appraisal that is often times too low. But why obtain multiple estimates? The reason for obtaining multiple estimates is to create a range within which the offer from the insurance company must fall. Since not all estimates will be exactly the same, you will have created a high and a low value for the cost of repairs. For example, if your first estimate says it will cost $1,200.00 and your second estimate says it will cost $1,600.00, not only will you have a general idea of how much the offer will need to be, you will know that the offer must be at least $1,200.00 but could cost as much as $1600 in order to correctly repair your vehicle. Another important thing to be aware of is what is called “supplemental repairs” or “supplemental damage”. This refers to damage that was not included in the original estimate or appraisal because it could not be observed until the repair work had begun. Well, how does this come up? Imagine you are rear-ended, the damage to the exterior of the bumper will be obvious but there may be damage down underneath the bumper that is not visible to anyone until the bumper is removed. When this happens, there may be supplemental repairs that need to be done. Usually the repair facility will be able to help you by contacting the insurance company and explaining the additional damage(s) for you. Normally the insurance company agrees to pay these as it is fairly common to have damage that was not easily observable upon the initial inspection and they will simply send a supplemental payment to the shop to cover the additional cost. But how will you get around while your car is under repair? The at-fault party’s insurance company must provide you with transportation and will normally put you in a rental vehicle while your car is in the shop. This will be done for a specified number of days, usually in direct correlation to the estimated time of repair in days. But as we’ve discussed, if there are supplemental repairs that need to be done, this may extend the time in which your car is in the shop. When this happens, the insurance company can always extend your rental vehicle for the additional amount of time as long as it’s within reason. Once the repair facility notifies you that repairs have been completed and your vehicle is ready to be picked up, you should make every effort to go get your vehicle and return the rental car as soon as possible so that you don’t get charged for any additional days in the rental car. Rental car companies won’t always notify you when your rental expires, they are sometimes content to keep you in their car as long as someone pays their daily rental rate and they don’t care if it’s you or the insurance company so make sure you return the rental expediently. Once all of this has transpired, hopefully your vehicle has been repaired to your satisfaction and you can then focus on your bodily injury claim if you were injured.
With offices throughout the state the Baton Rouge personal injury attorneys at Dudley DeBosier are here to help. If you or a loved one have been involved in an accident through no fault of your own give us a call at 444-4444 to schedule a free consultation. Also, visit our website at www.dudleydebosier.com and check out our free apps Droid/ IPhone.
November 4th, 2013
It is said that happiness has a major impact on our health, and according to www.good.is, happiness can have a greater impact on our health than smoking. If this was to be proven without a doubt, would you have a different outlook on your life? Our New Orleans personal injury lawyers know that when involved in an accident, it is easy to become negative and depressed due to loss of work or pain, but we are here to help turn that around because if our clients are not happy, neither are we!
Social scientist Sonja Lyubomirsky explains in her book that happiness affects nearly every aspect of our health: physical and mental well-being, energy levels, immune function, relationships with others, and even our life-spans. Indeed, a growing body of evidence suggests that being happier can actually make you live longer. Also, a study performed at Duke University has shown that regular exercise may be as effective as medicine when dealing with depression. Because of this, doctors have been prescribing more yoga and fewer prescriptions.
Angel Chernoff writes a post on 10 ways to make the rest of your day amazing:
1. Loosen your grip.
Trying to micromanage every little thing every moment is stressful. Life should be touched, not strangled. Sometimes you’ve got to relax and let life happen without incessant worry and micromanagement.
Starting now, let go before you squeeze too tight. Take a deep breath. When the dust settles and you can once again see the forest for the trees, take the next step forward. You don’t have to know exactly where you’re going every single second to be headed somewhere great. Everything in life is in perfect order whether you understand it yet or not. It just takes some time to connect all the dots.
2. Focus forward.
You can’t go back to how things were, or how you thought they were supposed to be. All you really have is now. The smartest thing you can control in life is your reaction to what’s beyond your control. Dwelling on negativity from the past simply contributes to its power. So stop focusing on what happened and start focusing on what’s going to move you forward.
Everyone’s life has positive and negative aspects – whether you’re happy and successful or not depends greatly on which aspects you focus on. The best thing you can do now is to let go of what you can’t control, and invest your energy in the things you can.
3. Check one lingering task off your to-do list.
Putting something off instantly makes it harder and scarier. What you don’t start today won’t be finished by tomorrow; and there’s nothing more stressful than the perpetual lingering of an unfinished task.
You know that thing you’ve been meaning to do, but you keep putting it off and it keeps nagging at you from the back of your mind. Stop the nagging by taking action now! (Read Getting Things Done.)
4. Spend an hour working on something that moves you.
When you strike that fine balance between the challenge of an activity and your skill at performing it, when the rhythm of your work feels in sync with your purpose, when you know that what you’re doing makes a difference, you become absorbed in the task at hand to the point where time ceases to exist. This is what true passion and happiness feels like.
So is there anything you do on a regular basis that makes you forget what time it is?
On your average day, flow experiences like these are those flashes of intense living when you’re engrossed in a meaningful task that makes you feel more alive. These optimal experiences can happen when you’re engaged in work, paid or unpaid, that move you. Work like this is something you should be pursuing for at least an hour on a daily basis.
5. Try something totally new.
Step out of your comfort zone and try something totally new. What have you wondered about doing, but haven’t had the courage or time to try? Aim for something small that you can accomplish in an hour or less. It can be a whole new activity or just a small experience, such as talking to a stranger.
Variety truly is the spice of life. You can see or do something a million times, but you can only see or do it for the first time once. As a result, first time experiences often lift our spirits and our consciousness.
So what’s new to YOU?
6. Help someone smile.
There is no exercise better for the improvement of our world than reaching down on a daily basis to lift someone up. Don’t wait for people to smile. Show them how. Do something nice for someone who has no way of paying you back. Do it because you can, and because it makes the world a happier place.
When you make a positive impact in someone else’s life, you also make a positive impact in your own life. Do something that’s greater than you – something that helps someone else to be happy or to suffer less. I promise, it will be an extremely rewarding experience. And your small gesture just might touch a wound that only kindness can heal. (Read The Happiness Project.)
7. Spend time with a friend who improves you.
You can go through life and make new friends every year – every month practically – but there is no substitute for the few who truly improve you. These aren’t the people who are simply nice to you; they’re the ones who help you uncover the things that are holding you back. In subtle ways, they bring ideas to your attention that change your life. These friends don’t just sit beside you unknowingly; they shake your world up, reveal your obstacles and weaknesses, and remain a part of your life because they care.
Friends like this are the most important people you will ever meet because they tear down the invisible walls you have built in your mind. In other words, they come into your life and reveal new, valuable layers of yourself that you would never have discovered without them.
Spend some time chatting with one of these people today.
8. Muse on life’s goodness.
You deserve some time every day in which worries don’t get in the way of your happiness. Moments when, even if some people are insensitive or unkind around you, you’re not going to mind because you realize that the blessings you have received are far greater than the burdens you are dealing with. You can create time like this for yourself today. There is power in positivity.
Think about the goodness. Be grateful for all the blessings you already have. We often take for granted the very things that most deserve our gratitude. What if you gave someone a gift and they neglected to thank you for it? Would you be likely to give them another one? The daily events in your life respond the same way. In order to attract more of the blessings that life has to offer, you must be grateful for what you already have.
9. Give yourself some “me time.”
Yes, you have battles out in the world to fight, insecurities to overcome, loved ones to contend with, and goals to achieve, but a break from it all is necessary. It’s perfectly healthy to pause and let the world spin without you for a while.
Go ahead and set aside some “me time” to be alone with your own thoughts today. Enjoy the space between the commotions. Say nothing, think quietly, just be and breathe. Give yourself an opportunity to discover who you really are, and to figure out why you truly are always alone… and why that’s perfectly OK. (Marc and I discuss this in more detail in the “Self-Love” and “Happiness” chapters of “1,000 Little Things Happy, Successful People Do Differently.”)
10. Be right here, right now.
I purposely left this point for last because it perfectly encompasses all the previous points. Be present. It’s being here now that’s important. Don’t let your life slip by. Pay attention to what’s happening in and around you; don’t just hurry through to the next thing.
You can’t stop the future. You can’t rewind the past. The only way to live is to press play. So instead of dwelling on what happened earlier today, or worrying about what might happen later on, just practice being and living in this moment. This moment, after all, is the only time guaranteed to you. Right now is all there ever truly is. Right now is life. Open your eyes so you don’t miss it.
With offices throughout the state, our New Orleans personal injury attorneys would like to see everyone happy, including our clients; that is why we stand by our No Fee Guarantee. If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident through no fault of your own, give us a call at 444-4444 to schedule a free consultation. Also, visit our website at www.dudleydebosier.com and check out our free app for DROID/IPhone.
October 23rd, 2013
October 23, 2013
The manufacturers of the medical devices we use in the United States have a responsibility to ensure the safety of their products. The Louisiana Defective Product Lawyers with Dudley DeBosier Injury Lawyers explain that any failure to do so could result in the maker of the product being held liable.
One such case has resulted in Massachusetts-based company, Boston Scientific Corp., and its subsidiary, Guidant, agreeing to a multi-million dollar settlement regarding claims the company made and distributed defective heart devices. According to an article from the Sun Herald, the company’s implantable defibrillators were found to not function properly, resulting in patients suffering from cardiac arrest caused by irregular heartbeats.
The products were distributed and used between 2002 and 2005; however, the company recalled and fixed the devices after receiving reports of problems. The Justice Department found the company continued to sell the defective products to consumers despite knowing of the problems. Furthermore, the company attempted to hide the problems from doctors, patients, and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
In response to the claims, the companies have agreed to pay $ 30 million in punitive damages in order to lay the matter to rest.
Dudley DeBosier’s Louisiana Personal Injury Lawyers are aware of the dangers using a defective medical device can pose and encourage anyone who has been harmed by such a product to discuss their legal rights with an attorney as soon as possible.
October 22nd, 2013
Having a baby is a time of joy and happiness, but the stress of labor can sometimes trigger a variety of powerful emotions including depression, known as postpartum depression. Unlike the “baby blues,” postpartum depression is a more severe, long-lasting form of depression. The New Orleans personal injury lawyers at Dudley DeBosier encourage anyone who feels they may be falling victim to postpartum depression to seek medical attention.
According to the Mayo Clinic, there is not one specific factor that causes postpartum depression, but there are several different aspects that may play a part in it including physical changes, emotional factors, and lifestyle changes.
Physical changes may contribute to postpartum depression. After childbirth, a dramatic drop in hormones (estrogen and progesterone) occurs in your body. Other hormones produced by your thyroid gland also may drop sharply. This can leave you feeling tired, sluggish, and depressed. Changes in your blood volume, blood pressure, immune system, and metabolism can contribute to fatigue and mood swings.
Emotional factors also may play a part. When you’re sleep deprived and overwhelmed, you may have trouble handling even minor problems. You may be anxious about your ability to care for a newborn. You may feel less attractive or struggle with your sense of identity. You may feel that you’ve lost control over your life. Any of these factors can contribute to postpartum depression. Lifestyle influences may contribute to postpartum depression, as well. Many lifestyle factors can lead to this including a demanding baby or older siblings, difficulty breast-feeding, financial problems, and lack of support from your partner or other loved ones.
Postpartum depression does not mean you are weak or a bad mother. The stress you put on your body during pregnancy and labor takes its toll both physically and emotionally, increasing chance of depression. Depression of any kind has the ability to rub off on those around you including your spouse and new baby. If you feel as though you may be falling victim to postpartum depression, do not be afraid to speak up for help. Depression is a medical concern that needs to be treated by a physician and is often treated with counseling or antidepressants.
With offices throughout the state, the experienced New Orleans personal injury attorneys at Dudley DeBosier are here to help. If you or someone you love has been involved in an accident please give us a call at 444-4444 to schedule a free consultation. Also, visit our website at www.dudleydebosier.com and check out our free apps for DROID/ IPhone.
October 17th, 2013
South Louisiana is often referred to as “Sportsman’s Paradise” and for good reason. From November to January, locals and tourists enjoy hunting season all over the state. Hunting is a fun recreational activity for many but can pose a threat if proper safety precautions aren’t taken. Whether hunting with a bow or firearm, there are many ways to properly prepare for safe hunting. Our experienced New Orleans personal injury attorneys here at Dudley DeBosier encourage everyone to educate themselves and their loved ones on possible dangers during this season.
Obtaining the correct permits and knowing regulations are important steps to take before hunting. Never go hunting without telling someone where you are going and when you expect to return. Common causes of hunting accidents include failure to properly identity the target, carelessness when handling a firearm, or harming someone out of sight. Simple carelessness and failure to positively identify game can result in injury or death. Here are some ways to help you prevent a hunting accident:
- Assume every gun is loaded.
- Keep your finger off the trigger until you are ready to shoot.
- Be sure of your target.
- Wear hunter orange. This helps prevent other hunters mistaking a person for an animal or shooting in your direction.
If using a tree stand:
- Use a safety belt for climbing.
- Always use a rope to raise and lower bows and guns.
- Use a harness or some type of safety strap.
- Use a sturdy portable stand.
Staying safe in the woods is usually one of a hunter’s top priorities; however, one safety measure that is often overlooked is ear protection. Sudden loud sounds, such as the shot from a hunting rifle, can cause permanent injury to the ear. Having proper ear protection offers defense against damaging noise during the gunshot but can hinder useful sound when seeking out prey. However, there are two types of ear protection specifically designed for sudden, intense noise. Electronic hearing protective devices and nonlinear hearing protection devices are designed to work against the damaging effects of impulse noise when the user is in quiet environments.
With offices throughout the state, Dudley DeBosier Injury Lawyers represent individuals in New Orleans and throughout Louisiana who have been injured. If you or a loved one has been involved in a hunting accident anywhere in Louisiana, contact the attorneys at Dudley DeBosier for a free consultation at 444-4444 or online at www.dudleydebosier.com. Download our free app for IPHONE / DROID here.