What Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Can Do for Debtors

After the Great Recession of 2008-09, many Americans found themselves in financial crisis – the nationwide effect of mass lay-offs, reduction in income, underemployment and prolonged unemployment. Adding to these were other factors which contributed to the worsening of an individual’s financial situation, such as hospitalization, injuries due to an accident, natural calamity and divorce. All these factors can result to successive failures in paying monthly bills, including mortgage, personal loans, car loan, child support, alimony or spousal support and credit card bills. Due to lapses in payment debts only keep on getting bigger so that settling everything becomes an impossible task.

The pay of millions of wage earners in the U.S. is just enough to cover their basic needs and afford them a simple life style. Loss of job or reduction in pay, even for just a month, can very well be the start of a crushing debt crisis for them. This debt crisis, however, will not be the only source of pressure and stress which they will suffer. After only about three months of continuous lapses in payment of their loans, banks would already consider their loans as bad debts; a major reason for their account to be referred to a collection agency which never shy away from using hounding tactics just to make them pay. This means people calling any time of the day, especially during the late hours, receiving calls even at work and informing other workers about their debt, receiving emails, text messages, and/or letters/notices from law firms. Some collection agencies even go to the extent of requesting the court for garnishment of a debtor’s monetary compensation (until the entire debt is paid) or for a bank levy, which is the freezing of a debtor’s bank account.

Having debts, however, regardless of how big it is, does not need to be a cause of worry to debtors due to the Bankruptcy law, the government’s way of helping people find ways to pay their debts and, so, regain control of their financial situation. This Bankruptcy law or Bankruptcy Code was passed by the U.S. Congress in 1978; it replaces the Nelson Act or the Bankruptcy Act of 1898. There are various chapters under the Bankruptcy Code, one of these is chapter 7, also called Liquidation bankruptcy.

Chapter 7 bankruptcy, the bankruptcy chapter most commonly applied for, is specifically designed for individuals who have properties, but whose income falls within the limit set by the chapter. Under this chapter, a debtor will need to surrender his or her “non-exempt” properties for liquidation. If the surrendered property is a business firm, he or she will also have to cease operation of such firm. Included in the list of non-exempt properties are a vacation home or a second house, bonds, stocks, cash, and other forms of investment. Properties that may not be surrendered (“exempt” properties) include a house, clothing, necessary household appliances, a vehicle or vehicles but only up to a certain value, personal injury compensation, tools, including expensive musical instruments, that are necessary to the debtor’s trade or profession, and jewelry (up to a certain value).

All properties to be liquidated are to be under the charge of a court-appointed trustee. After the trustee has paid all the debts that need to be paid (these are called “non-dischargeable” debts), such as spousal support, child support, government-imposed penalties, court fees, student loan, debts resulting from wrongful death or personal injury, and taxes that are not more than 3 years old since they first became due, the remaining amount (if there is any) will have to be returned to the debtor. Creditors, on their part, will have to accept whatever legally determined amount they are paid, even if this amount falls short of what is actually owed them. This means that they will have to forgive the debtor of any remaining balance and waive their right to make any more collection or payment or suffer severe penalties under federal law.

As mentioned in a website named Ryan J. Ruehle Attorney at Law, LLC, “Chapter 7 bankruptcy offers the near-total liquidation of all debts that an individual may hold, giving those who pursue this option the ability to start their financial life anew.” Many people, however, find Chapter 7 quite complex due to all the legal issues it contains. A bankruptcy lawyer, in this situation, may be the best person who can help debtors understand all these legal issues, and analyze if this is the specific bankruptcy chapter which will best address their financial crisis.

Is There Someone to Blame for My Child’s Erb’s Palsy?

In the height of Greece’s power in the Ancient times, the Spartans and Peloponnese regarded that a woman dying by child-birth was as honorable and difficult as a soldier heading off to war. There is, of course, precedence for this. Child-birth can be difficult and bloody and one wrong move could have devastating effects.

This brings up the topic of Erb’s palsy which is a paralysis caused by injury during child-birth. Oftentimes, this is due to carelessness or negligence during the delivery. Perhaps the baby was delivered too quickly or too much force was exerted in the attempt to pull the baby out of the womb and a nerve was damaged. This can sometimes be corrected over the course of several months through surgery and physical therapy. If left untreated, the paralysis in the child’s arm could become stunted and some cases even state that the entire arm could be entirely and permanently paralyzed throughout the person’s life.

In this kind of situation, if there is someone who is responsible for the newborn’s paralysis, that person should then be held accountable for the consequences that have been thrust upon the child. Medical practitioners are expected to practice a certain standard of care with every patient in order to avoid causing unnecessary and completely avoidable side-effects such as this. When they fail to render safe services to the point that they actually cause more harm than good, it can be said that they’ve behaved negligently. While doctors have difficult, stressful jobs, negligence that has lifelong negative consequences should not be tolerated.

Burn Injuries

Injuries that involve burns and scalds are often very painful injuries that can lead to permanent physical damages. According to the website of the Cazayoux Ewing Law Firm, these injuries can be caused by a number of things: electric shock, chemicals, extreme heat and sometimes even extreme cold. Burns and scalds are common injuries in workplace accidents, particularly in places where the workers are exposed to chemicals, extreme heat, and electrical equipment or machinery. Those who work with these are always at risk of burn and scald injuries and should be fully aware of the risks involved in their job. Nevertheless, it is still the employers’ responsibilities to ensure that the workers are properly trained and have the right safety equipment to guarantee their protection.

It is the employers’ responsibility to evaluate the natural risks that come with the job, and failing to provide such safety procedures and safety gears can make them liable not only for workers’ compensation but also for personal injury claims. Burns and scalds are not only painful injuries, they can cost a lot of medical expenses because of the length of treatment depending on the severity of the injury. Aside from financial problems, these injuries can also cause emotional and physical problems. With serious physical disfigurement, those who have burns, scalds and scarring can suffer from depression and even physical limitations due to their injuries. When the effects of the burns and scalds resulted in serious damages to the victim, filing personal injury claim is a real option, especially when the accident was caused by negligent or reckless actions (or inaction) of another person.

Although financial compensation may not be enough to undo the damage caused by the burns, scalds or scarring, it can be beneficial to help cover for the expenses of long-term treatment, medications, lost days at work, rehabilitation, and even counseling and cosmetic surgery. The amount of compensation will depend on the severity and impact of the injuries, and the “burden of proof” will depend on the evidence that you can present to the court.

What to Do After a Car Accident

According to data gathered by the United States Bureau, an average of 10.6 million motor vehicle accidents occurred each year between 2004 and 2009. Such a significant number proves how common car crashes and road accidents are in America. Considering the statistics, it won’t come as a surprise when you suddenly find yourself in the same situation. The website of McCutchen Buckley – The Law Firm suggests taking the following steps should you ever find yourself in a minor collision.

When you become involved in a car crash, the first thing you will need to do is gather as much information about the incident as you possibly can. Note down the date and exact time of the accident. If the weather was bad, take note of the weather conditions as well. It’s important that you exchange information with the other driver involved in crash. Get their name, address, license number and expiration date, as well as their insurance details. You should also try to learn more about the car they were driving by asking for the vehicle registration. If they had passengers, try to get to know them as well. In turn, you should offer the other driver the same information.

It is also crucial to gather information about individuals who have witnessed your accident. Ask them if they can recount what had happened from what they saw, and ask for their names, addresses, and telephone numbers. If you can, you should also take pictures of the scene. When the police arrive, you should note down the name and badge number of the office you are speaking with and ask when you will be able to have a copy of the accident’s report.

Even minor collisions can result to injury so make sure you seek out medical treatment right away. If a physician finds that you have been injured by the accident and you would like to receive compensation to help cover treatment costs, the next step is to consult with an experienced personal injury lawyer. They will be the ones to advise you on the next steps you should take.

Possible Hardships of Selling Your Mineral Rights

Selling can be incredibly difficult, especially if you are not aware how to make heads or tails of how to sell mineral rights in the first place. There are a lot of buyers who might take advantage of that. If you are not careful with these rights, you might be pressured into selling what is rightfully yours for a price that is quite significantly cheaper than what it is actually worth. If you are looking to sell, it would be much better to contact an expert in order to get a better quote for how much your mineral rights are worth and to get a buyer that is respectable and trustworthy.

There are some buyers who might not have the right kind of credit history, thereby cheating you out of not just your rights but also your time as there could be legal disputes on the table should a deal go awry. Another option that is available to you, with regard to your mineral rights, is to lease them out. However, this is more advisable to those who have a history with the industry. Leasing out your rights can be complicated, if this is not your primary concern. Selling, though complicated, usually involves just the one handout and direct payment, allowing you then to be completely cleared of responsibilities that tie you in with this market.

It is also difficult to have to deal with mineral rights as they entail many legal circumstances and arduous procedures, often leading to stressful deadline complications or problems with documentations. The market also fluctuates, regarding how much these rights can be worth when sold, and that is something that needs to be accounted for when selling.

If you or someone you know is looking towards selling their mineral rights, it is of the utmost importance that you place your trust into reputable, expert helping hands, in order to receive the best deal, with as little delay and stress as possible.

When the Clot Hits the Fan

Yet another wonder drug by big drug companies is about to be brought to its knees for allegations of misrepresentation and failure to warn. This time, oral anticoagulant Xarelto of the direct Factor Xa (10-a) inhibitor class is taking center stage.

A woman in Kentucky named Virginia Stuntebeck filed a lawsuit suit against Xarelto US distributor Johnson & Johnson and manufacturer Bayer AG in federal court on February 18, 2014. In June, the federal judge remanded the case to Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas.

Xarelto (rivaroxaban) was approved in July 2011 by the Food and Drug Administration for the prevention of blood clotting in patients with atrial fibrillation (irregular heartbeat), a condition in which the blood can pool in the heart and form clots which may cause pulmonary embolism or stroke. A further approval for treatment of deep vein thrombosis (DVT) was granted in November 2011. However, the FDA has refused multiple times to approve its use as a treatment for acute coronary syndrome, perhaps in response to the growing number of complaints being reported.

The main allegation in the Stuntebeck case was that the drug was too dangerous to be sold. It was filed directly after the Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruled that drug companies can be held liable for marketing pharmaceuticals that were inherently too risky to use. Stuntebeck was prescribed with Xarelto in June 2012 to manage her atrial fibrillation, and had to be rushed to the hospital for uncontrollable gastrointestinal bleeding in February 2013.

According to the website of xarelto lawsuit lawyers Williams Kherkher, 72 Xarelto-related deaths have been reported by Bayer for the first half of 2013 alone, compared to the 58 reported for 2012. If you suspect that serious injuries you have sustained may have been due to Xarelto, do not hesitate to contact a defective drugs lawyer in your area to find out if you are eligible for compensation.

A Harmful Way of Treating POP and SUI

Failure of a female’s pelvic muscles to support her bladder and urethra usually results to stress urinary incontinence (SUI) and then to unrestrained outflow of bowel or urine. (The bladder is a sac where urine is stored, while the urethra is the tube where the urine flows and released out of the body.

Stress urinary incontinence (SUI) is usually treated by having tissues sewn to provide support to the collapsed organ; these tissues are taken from the patients themselves. This procedure, though, usually requires another surgery, called hysterectomy which, in the past, has shown a high rate of failure.

The introduction of the Transvaginal/Vaginal Mesh in 1996, after the US Food and Drug Administration approved it for treating SUI cases, may have been a timely solution to doctor’s and patients’ need at the time. It was, then, manufactured by Boston Scientific and named ProteGen vaginal cling. This medical device is intended to provide added support to damaged or weakened tissue and most of those available for use are either manufactured from animal tissue or synthetic material.

The synthetic material used to produce the mesh can either be made from knitted or non-knitted sheet forms ; it may also be absorbable or non-absorbable (sometimes, both absorbable and non-absorbable materials are combined to produce one type of mesh).

In October of 2008 and then again in July of 2011, warnings were released by the FDA concerning the product’s safety. In a span of only three years, from January 1, 2008 to Dec. 31, 2010, as many as 2,874 complication cases involving vaginal mesh implants were reported to the FDA. 1,503 of these reports were about pelvic organ prolapsed complications; the remaining 1371 was about stress urinary incontinence treatment or repair.

Vaginal mesh implants are introduced as low-risk surgeries. Manufacturers of the mesh products, though, will not be able to deny the clear evidences of complications that have resulted due to the use of the product. A few of these complications are organ bleeding and perforation, vaginal scarring and shrinkage, infections, and mesh erosion. Because of these factors, many injured women have filed vaginal mesh lawsuits in order to seek compensation for the complications associated with their failed mesh implants.

If you have suffered because of a vaginal mesh implant, make sure to contact a personal injury lawyer today. An attorney will be able to help you through your case, guiding you through this difficult time.

How to Feel Good and Stay Feeling Good

Everyday, as soon as you wake up and turn on the TV, you get bombarded with negative news – this is how majority of Americans begin their day. Unless you have the ability to never allow these negative messages to linger in your sub-consciousness and ruin your day, then your day will definitely be ruined.

Barbara L. Fredrickson, Ph.D., one of the best academicians in the fields of positive psychology, affective science, and social psychology says that positive emotions can change one’s perspective on life, improve decision making, boost one’s performance and productivity and attain greater success during negotiations.

In her book titled “Positivity,” she offers some really valuable information on how one can have and maintain positive emotions. These include practicing gratitude, being kind, connecting well with others, spending time to appreciate nature, and learning how to savor even the smallest good things in life.

Songwriting—Know Your Style!

It is inevitable that all songwriters will experience the dreaded writers block at some point in their creative career. However, it is important to distinguish writers block from just knowing when to take a step back.

Different artists work best under different circumstances. You may be the type to sit down and crank out a song in one sitting, or you may be the type who needs inspiration to flow to you in due time. It is important that you know which style you are so that you are able to produce your best material.

If you try to force the music, then you won’t get the results you truly want. At the same time, if you are the kind who waits for the inspiration to hit you at random times, then be prepared for that. Always carry a notebook with you so that you don’t forget a great thought.

This quote from Albert Einstein is great in understanding why your individual writing style/talent is truly important for your success:

“Everybody is a genius. But, if you judge a fish on its ability to climb a tree, it’ll spend its whole life believing that it is stupid.”

Brain Injury: A Serious Personal Harm that Definitely Deserves Compensation

One of the most serious types of personal injury is that which is inflicted to the brain as this can lead to disability, unconsciousness, comatose, amnesia, or death. Personal injury is harm committed against a person due to another individual’s negligent or careless behavior. Though it is usually physical, it nevertheless affects the victim mentally and emotionally. A personal injury may also be accidental or intentional in nature.

The causes of personal injury range from simple accidents, like a slip and fall, to severe motor vehicular accidents (on land, air or at sea); it can also result from medical errors, defective products or exposure to hazardous materials while at work. While some personal injuries can be severe, resulting to the victim’s prolonged disability which, in turn, results to financial loses and costly medical treatment, others can lead to the victim’s untimely death. Under the law, victims of personal injury have the right to receive compensation from the liable party (whether this be an individual, a business firm or a governmental entity) to cover their present and future damages.

Brain injury, otherwise known as intracranial or traumatic brain injury (TBI), is a very serious personal injury caused by a strong jolt or very violent blow to one’s head. This usually occurs during a car accident, fall, violence, explosive blast or sporting accident. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), more than 1 million Americans are treated for brain injuries every year – about 50,000 of them die.

The website of the San Diego maritime lawyers of Ritter & Associates, gives the same statistics and further adds diving and swimming accidents, criminal acts and amusement park ride accidents to the list of causes of brain injury.

Car accident, however, is the major cause of this type of injury. Despite the safety features of a car and the careful observance of traffic rules by some drivers, the negligence of some manufacturers, which result to a car’s poor design and materials, or the recklessness of some drivers, can render futile all observance for safety and cause an accident that can severely injure or kill others – an alarming fact written in an article posted in the website of Habush Habush & Rottier S.C. ®.

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