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Something on the Happier Side of Personal Injury

Coming off a post where I discussed what angered me, today is something that just makes my job totally worth doing. I have a wonderful client who is a hard-working, single mom with a grown-son with significant mobility and functional disabilities. She was in a terrible car accident a year ago and has been suffering with both her injuries and her inability to take care of her son as she did before the accident. Yesterday, we were able to hand her a large check that will not only help her get continued medical care for herself but also help her get the assistance she needs to take care of her son. It sounds great, but it wasn’t easy. The insurance company did what an insurance company does, take their time in paying and tried to pay as little as they could. But the evidence was overwhelming in my client’s favor and it became clear to the insurance company that they did not want to try this case in court.

If you are having difficulties with dealing with the insurance company and find that they aren’t cooperating, get an attorney! We would be honored to assist you with your claim for damages or injuries. Just contact us at 615-844-4034 or go to our website, The Nashville Law Firm. We are here to help!

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The Part of My Job That Angers Me

Yesterday I received a call from a prospective client who informed me that both his daughter and granddaughter were injured in an automobile accident. You may be asking yourself, what’s unusual about that? This daughter and granddaughter were injured as the result of a drunk driver. The granddaughter is still in the hospital, after being there nearly a month. This drunk driver was going nearly 80 mph, in a 45 mph zone. He struck them head-on. It makes my skin boil! Even worse, this guys “buddies” claimed they tried to hide his keys from him. Nice job! A bunch of drunk guys hiding keys from another drunk. I’m guessing they held them in front of his face and told him that they were invisible now. Please, please, please don’t drive drunk – ever! There are services out there that will help you get home safe and let others get home safe too. If you’d like more information, please contact MADD (Mothers Against Drunk Driving) and if you have a problem with alcohol or a loved-one does, please contact Alcoholics Anonymous (AA). By the way, what puts this case over-the-top for me, this drunk driver didn’t have car insurance. So not only did he injure them physically, now they are injured financially. If you or anyone ever needs to speak with an attorney about insurance or an accident, please contact us, The Nashville Law Firm or at 615-844-4034.

Gov. Haslam Wants to Protect Businesses, Not Consumers

According to Richard Locker of The Commercial Appeal, Gov. Bill Haslam is proposing new restrictions to the Tennessee Consumer Protection Act, including a ban on class-action lawsuits, lower limits on noneconomic damage awards in personal injury cases and bans on punitive damages in certain situations.

The Tennessee Consumer Protection Act of 1977 was adopted “to protect consumers and legitimate business enterprises from those who engage in unfair or deceptive acts or practices in the conduct of any trade or commerce.”

State Rep. Mike Kernell, D-Memphis, disappointed with the Governor’s attempts to weaken the law stated that, “I have not heard of any complaints about it,” he said. “It’s not really been discussed so I don’t understand why it’s all of a sudden a problem. … It protects consumers and businesses from fly-by-night and fraudulent businesses.”

The governor’s legal counsel, Herbert Slatery, said the changes “fit within everything else: providing some clarity for business, including specified limits” on damage awards. “So many other states have done this and we want to be competitive,” he said.

Slatery said the new administration believes TCPA has been misused, a stance backed by the Tennessee Chamber of Commerce & Industry, which brought it to the governor’s attention.

What Mr. Slatery is forgetting are the Tennessee residents who the laws are set to protect. The Governor is more concerned with protecting big business than the consumer with this legislation. I encourage you to contact your local representative to tell him about your displeasure with this law.

Should you have any legal questions, contact The Nashville Law Firm, and we’d be happy to assist you.

Judge’s Ruling Overturned In Medical Malpractice Case

The Tennessee Court of Appeals has reversed Davidson County Circuit Judge Barbara Haynes for appearing biased in a medical malpractice case involving Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt.

Haynes is a voting member and former chairwoman of the hospital’s board of directors.

Smyrna mother Annette Olerud is elated with the decision. She sued a pediatric surgeon at the hospital and Vanderbilt University, of which the hospital is a part, after her 12-year-old daughter, Rachel, died of cancer in 2007.

Haynes dismissed the suit last year. Olerud later was shocked to discover Haynes’ affiliation with the hospital. The family filed a request for Haynes to reverse her dismissal and step down from the case. Haynes refused.

Olerud said that after turning to the judiciary for help after her daughter’s death, she instead ended up in a fight with the courts, as well.

“I can tell you that my confidence in the judicial system is being restored,” Olerud said of the Court of Appeals decision. “Today is a glorious day because someone has listened. It’s been four long years.”

In its opinion, the state Court of Appeals did not find that Haynes was biased or partial but said the appearance of a conflict was reason enough for the judge to step down.

“Applying an objective standard, we believe that the court’s impartiality might reasonably be questioned under the circumstances presented,” the opinion states.

The Court of Appeals ordered that Haynes be removed from the Olerud case, that all of her orders in it be reversed and that the Davidson County Circuit Court appoint a new judge to hear the case.

Reached at home Tuesday evening, Haynes said she had not read the opinion and wanted to do so before commenting.

In November, Haynes told The Tennessean that she didn’t believe her involvement with the hospital was a conflict of interest because the board is not the hospital’s governing body. That role falls to the Vanderbilt Board of Trust.

“Her relationship is a voluntary position on an advisory board for the hospital that does not oversee governance issues,” Vanderbilt spokesman John Howser wrote in an e-mail.

Olerud said a disciplinary case against Haynes is ongoing. She filed a complaint with the Tennessee Court of the Judiciary, which investigates allegations of misconduct by judges. The complaint has not been dismissed.

The Court of the Judiciary does not comment on its cases unless it decides to hand down some form of public discipline against a judge.

Source: Brandon Gee of The Tennessean

The Nashville Law Firm, PA

Tennessee Injury News Coming Soon.

The Nashville Law Firm will be adding its first blog in the upcoming days.  Stay tuned!  Check out our site in the mean time at The Nashville Law Firm.