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How Third Parties Can Be Liable for Construction Worker FallsFalls cause more deaths at construction sites than any other work-related accidents. Construction workers are sometimes positioned high in the air, making any fall a life-threatening event. Even falls with little or no elevation can be dangerous if the worker falls onto a piece of equipment or hard surface. When seeking compensation for their injuries, many construction workers must file a workers’ compensation claim because their injuries occurred as a result of performing their job duties or negligence by their employer. However, there are situations where a third party was responsible for the fall and is liable in a personal injury lawsuit.

Faulty Equipment

Construction workers use equipment from third-party manufacturers to reach high places and protect themselves while up there. You could file a personal injury lawsuit against the manufacturer or seller of the equipment if its failure caused your injuries, such as a ladder that collapses or a safety harness that fails to secure you. To hold a third party liable for a faulty product, you must prove that:

  • There was a flaw in the product’s design;
  • The materials used to build the product were substandard;
  • The manufacturer was negligent in constructing the product; or
  • The seller knew of the product’s flaws when you or your employer purchased it.

Unsafe Conditions

You and your employer may lack control over the conditions of the work site if you are working with a subcontractor or other third party. Leaving equipment strewn across the ground or spilling a slick substance may cause you to fall from tripping or slipping. Because this is a third party claim, you must prove that:

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Five Keys to a Peaceful Divorce ResolutionThe decision to divorce is often born from a conflict between two people, but the actual process does not need to be tenuous. It is advantageous for you and your spouse to have an amicable divorce because the process will be quicker and you are more likely to be happy with the resulting agreement. The reason for your divorce and each of your personalities can determine whether the process will be peaceful. Infidelity or abuse may make you bitter and defensive towards your spouse. However, you can decide to behave in a way that encourages an amicable divorce:

  1. Be Respectful: You should enter each negotiation session with a spirit of civility and respect. If you are struggling to respect your spouse, you can at least respect the negotiation process. Set the tone for the negotiations by being calm and non-combative, and do not respond if your spouse tries to incite an argument.
  2. Do Not Dwell on Past Mistakes: Talking about the problems in your marriage that led to divorce is a waste of time and can derail your negotiations. You have already decided to divorce. The purpose of your negotiations is to determine how you will separate your lives. Continuing to argue about who was to blame for your divorce is distracting you from your goal.
  3. Choose Your Arguments: There are parts of your divorce that you should be able to quickly agree on, such as who will keep certain properties. However, some divorcees turn every detail of divorce into an argument, which needlessly lengthens the process. Save your arguments for issues that are important to you.
  4. Be Amenable: You will sometimes disagree with your spouse during an amicable divorce but should try to remain reasonable. Understand the give-and-take nature of a negotiation. Giving up one thing in a divorce may allow you to keep another thing that you value more.
  5. Know When to Take a Break: If you find yourself becoming emotional and irrational, suggest pausing the negotiations and returning after you have calmed down. Allowing your emotions to escalate may cause a larger argument that leads to a breakdown in negotiations.

Contact a Barrington Divorce Attorney

A high-conflict divorce can be expensive and leave you with emotional scars after the process is over. An amicable divorce is possible if both sides agree to be civil and willing to cooperate towards a common goal. A Barrington, Illinois, divorce lawyer at Joseph M. Lucas & Associates, LLC, can advise you on the best tactics for having a peaceful divorce. To schedule a consultation, call 847-381-8700.

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Recovering Missed Pay in Personal Injury LawsuitBeing injured in an accident can cost you more than what you must pay for medical treatment. Suffering a debilitating injury may require you to miss time from work while you recover. When you return to work, you may be limited in the tasks you can perform or the hours you can work. Your employer has no obligation to compensate you if your injury occurred outside of your work. You will need to include your compensation for lost wages as part of your personal injury lawsuit.

Time Off

A person who is recuperating from a serious injury may miss weeks or months worth of work days. The time off may include:

  • The initial medical treatment and recovery period;
  • Time in physical therapy to regain strength; and
  • Follow-up appointments with doctors and physical therapists after the patient returns to work.

Depending on your employee benefits, you may not be paid or may receive reduced pay for the days that you miss. Contract workers have no means of recovering the money they lost for time off. Your personal injury compensation can include the pay you did not receive because you were unable to work. Even if vacation or sick days covered some of your time off, you are still entitled to the value of that time off in your lawsuit. Illinois courts will not allow a liable party in a personal injury case to get away with paying less because the plaintiff has insurance and employee benefits.

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Split or Sell: What to Do With Luxury Items in DivorceGetting a divorce means accounting for every marital property of value and figuring out what you want to do with them. In a high-asset divorce, you may have numerous valuable properties to divide that you would classify as luxury items instead of necessities. They may be:

  • Recreational vehicles;
  • Collector’s items;
  • Fine art;
  • Club memberships; and
  • Vacation homes.

You must decide together who will keep each luxury item and whether you want to sell any of the items.

Valuation

Whether you divide your luxury items or sell them, you first need to know what you have and how much each item is worth. You should hire your own assessor to value the luxury items based on their condition and what someone would likely pay for them. Some collector’s items may require an assessor that specializes in evaluating that type of item. Do not assume that your spouse will tell you an accurate value because he or she has an incentive to understate the value a property that he or she wants to keep.

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How Pedestrians Can Protect Themselves During the WinterThere are typically fewer pedestrians during the winter months, but winter conditions can make walking near streets more hazardous for those who brave the weather. Drivers bear most of the responsibility for preventing accidents involving pedestrians. As a pedestrian, you can take extra precautions to protect yourself and help drivers:

  1. Visibility: Daylight hours are shorter during the winter, and the snow can make it harder for drivers to see you. Wear bright colors during the day and reflective clothing at night. Walk in well-lit areas. Your own vision may also be diminished by the conditions and your need to bundle up. Make sure you are able to see around you in order to avoid potential hazards.
  2. Eye Contact: If you are at an intersection with a stopped vehicle, make eye contact with the driver before you cross. Do not assume that the driver notices you and knows that you plan to walk in front of the vehicle. By making eye contact, you are acknowledging that you see each other and understand who has the right-of-way.
  3. Footwear: Have on boots or shoes that are appropriate for the conditions you will be walking through. Your footwear should protect your feet from being numbed by the cold and give you enough traction to walk on slick surfaces. Slipping in or near an intersection puts you at greater risk of being hit by a vehicle.
  4. Stopping Time: Suddenly walking into an intersection forces a driver to react quickly. Vehicles need more time to stop in slick conditions, and slamming on the brakes may cause the driver to lose control. Be more cautious about when you enter an intersection because you know the driver may have difficulty stopping for you.
  5. Staying Out of the Road: You may be tempted to walk in the street if you reach an area of sidewalk that has not been cleared of snow. However, walking in a driving lane puts you at much greater risk of being hit because drivers are not expecting pedestrians in the road. If the pedestrian walkway is impassable, you should find an alternate route that does not involve walking in the street.

Contact a Barrington Personal Injury Lawyer

Being cautious may not prevent a pedestrian injury in all cases, but it eliminates needless risks. Behaving recklessly may also mean that you share responsibility for the accident, which can lessen your award in a personal injury case. A Barrington, Illinois, personal injury attorney at Joseph M. Lucas & Associates, LLC, can help you receive compensation when you have been injured in a pedestrian accident. Schedule a consultation by calling 847-381-8700.

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