1 116 September 2011 The Lawyers Of Hill Boren T. Robert Hill Ricky L. Boren Jeffrey P. Boyd James R. Krenis Tamara L. Hill Mike Hartup Laura Bailey Featured In This Issue 1. Silence is Golden 2. Truck Violations Mount 3. Ride At Your Own Risk 4. Social Security Claims Process 5. In Memoriam 5. News & Notes 6. F-150 s Affected in Massive Recall 6. Weight Loss Gimmick Causes Harm 7. Recent Settlements 8. Dangerous Products Docket Silence is Golden As many of you know, when you are injured on the job, the employer or its insurance carrier will contact you to discuss the details of your case. They may also claim you are required to sign forms and complete paperwork. They may wrongly tell you that you MUST sign medical releases in order for your medical treatment to begin. Almost always, a company or insurance representative tricks the employee into making admissions or statements that lead to a denial of the claim. The less you say about your claim the better off you are until you have sought the advice of a lawyer. You are required to notify your employer that you have been injured, you are required to give the date the injury occurred (if you remember) and the circumstances. You do not need to remember the exact details 100% correctly. Describing your complaints and injuries in general terms is always better than trying to be specific. For example, if your injury developed over time, do not attempt to give a date that the injury occurred. Tell the employer that you do not know a specific date of your injury. If you are having numbness and tingling in your hands, tell the employer that your arm is bothering you such that the doctors will not be limited to examining only your hands. If your job requires many different movements, do not limit your injury to one specific task unless you are absolutely sure that is what caused your injury. Finally, and most importantly, ONCE YOU HIRE AN ATTORNEY DO NOT SPEAK WITH ANYONE FROM THE INSURANCE COMPANY, THE EMPLOYER, OR THE INSURANCE COMPANY LAWYERS WITHOUT YOUR ATTORNEY S KNOWLEDGE. Hill-Boren represents a significant number of former Goodyear employees regarding all types of cases including reconsideration of prior settlements, new injuries and hearing loss claims. In some cases, the employees are being called by the insurance company and told to appear at the offices of Goodyear s attorney s to give a recorded statement---even though the employee has an attorney. If you have a case and have talked to an attorney, do not fall into this trap. If you have a question about whether you should be talking to someone, the first call you need to make is to Hill-Boren, We re here to help, and we know how.
2 Semi Truck Violations Mount Big trucks cause serious harm to U.S. drivers and their passengers often due to the unsafe condition of the interstate trucks and lack of training of drivers. A recent national safety check show just how dangerous travel on U.S. roads are. In June 2011, the Commercial Motor Vehicle Safety Alliance (CMVSA) held its Roadcheck 2011 event. This event asks for all states to inspect trucks. Less than 1% of all trucks are inspected. By announcing the inspections 4 months in advance, the CMVSA gives drivers and trucking companies four months to prepare, for the possible inspection. Despite huge publicity of the inspections in the trucking industry, the 3 day inspection period in 2011 found almost 20% of the inspected vehicles and drivers failed a Level 1 inspection. The fact that truck drivers are on the road in an unsafe condition, knowing that this special inspection will be run, shows how drivers believe the chances of being inspected are so rare that they believe they won t be caught, or that they are so ill trained that they think they are safe. Nationwide data shows that in 2010, log book violations (logs are designed to keep tired drivers off the road) were the most common reasons for drivers being taken out-of-service. The most frequent out-of-service item for trucks was unsafe brakes, 25.5 percent of all vehicle violations were for bad brakes. The real danger is tired truckers driving trucks with bad brakes, a formula for disaster. At Hill-Boren, we know how to handle cases involving interstate trucking accidents that result in deaths and serious injuries. Can we help you with your case? Call us today
3 Ride at Your Own Risk We entrust them to take our children safely on field trips or to sports tournaments. We ride them on sightseeing tours or group outings. But, in recent months, charter buses have come under increasing scrutiny, due to a shocking number of fatal crashes. The causes are diverse, ranging from driver negligence and unsafe conditions, to vehicle malfunction. In many states, regulations for charter bus companies are more lax than those for mass transportation, like city buses. Bus Fatalities Understated Not only are these vehicles dangerous, but a USA Today reporter recently uncovered that the federal government has been miscounting the fatalities of bus crashes for years. According to the reports, nearly twenty percent of bus crash fatalities since 2003 have gone unreported. With the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) working with false data, it is no wonder so little has been done to prevent these devastating accidents. We urge you to be mindful and remain aware when riding a bus and to remember that, should you or someone you love be injured in a tour bus crash, you have an advocate at Hill-Boren. Call us. We know how to handle your case.
4 The Social Security Disability Claims Process Sadly, many people are finding themselves unemployed these days. Worse still, some may not be physically able to work even if a job was available. Thankfully, Social Security disability benefits may be an option to replace some of their lost income. While very few people are approved on their first application, most people who apply have to navigate the Social Security appeals process before they can receive benefits. Because many don t know what to expect when they apply, I thought I would give a brief description of the typical appeals process. The claim is initiated by filing an application for disability benefits online over the phone or at a local Social Security office. Then, the application will be sent to what is known as the Disability Determination Section, or DDS, where the claim is processed. DDS will attempt to gather your medical records, possibly send you to some doctors for evaluation, ask you to fill out several questionnaires, and review the physical and skill requirements of your past work. After a couple to several months, they will make a determination as to whether you meet the requirements for disability benefits. For most claimants, this results in a denial. You then have 60 days to file your first appeal, which is known as a Request for Reconsideration. At this stage, DDS again reviews the claim. It is no surprise that they rarely change their position on the first determination, and most people are once again denied. You must then file your second appeal within 60 days. This is a Request for a Hearing before an Administrative Law Judge. At this point, the claim is removed from DDS processing and a new determination is made by a Federal Administrative Law Judge or ALJ. The ALJ is not bound by the DDS prior determinations and will conduct a hearing using your medical records, your testimony and sometimes the testimonies of vocational or medical experts. The judge will then issue a decision as to whether you meet the requirements for disability. With the representation of a competent attorney, many claimants who were denied at the initial and reconsideration levels are awarded benefits at this level. While the process can be lengthy, if you are awarded at this stage, you are usually entitled to receive back-benefits, typically paid in a lump sum. If you are again denied at the ALJ level, you can file a third appeal to the Appeals Council, which will review that decision. Claimants are allowed to make written arguments in support of this appeal, and again it is advisable to have a competent attorney assist you. Claimants need to be prepared for what is typically a long wait for a resolution. However, the vast majority of cases that I handle are resolved favorably at the Administrative Law Judge level. Let Us Help You Unlock Your Social Security Benefits.
5 A Tribute to George Morrison The legal community in Jackson recently lost one of its true champions when George Morrison passed away. George spent his whole career representing injured people. George had taken over the law practice from his father, who started the practice many years before. He was a good friend and a credit to the legal system. I was honored to serve as one of the pallbearers at his funeral. All of us are sorry to see him go and wish his surviving wife and three daughters the best in the future. We have truly lost a champion of justice. In Loving Memory, Ricky Boren News & Notes Way To Go Emma!! T. Robert Hill s granddaughter, Emma, recently finished first in the Junior Overall Division race at the First Annual Kids Tower Triathlon in Paris, TN. Competitors from Tennessee, Kentucky, Mississippi and Arkansas swam 100 yds, biked 3 miles and ran 1/2 mile. Congratulations to this member of the Hill-Boren family! Wizard World Attorneys Robert and Tamara Hill recently spent four days at the Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Studios in Orlando, FL. Pictured with Robert (Dumbledore) are son, Chandler Kee (Harry) and granddaughter, Emma Hill (Ginny Weasley).
6 F-150 s Affected in Massive Recall More than one million trucks have been recalled by Ford Motor Company due to faulty fuel tank straps that may corrode and cause the gas tank to fall and potentially cause explosions. The recall covers F-150s from model years 1997 to 2004; F-250s from model years 1997 to 1999; and Lincoln Blackwoods from model years 2002 to After three fires and one injury, the popular vehicles came under investigation by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Earlier this year, a million F-150s were recalled for air-bag defects. Although no vehicles are affected by both recalls, we urge owners to be cautious and pursue any recall actions. If you or anyone you know has received injury from or damage to one of these vehicles, contact Hill-Boren for a free consultation. Note: While most of the recalls were in northern states where the trucks are exposed to road salt, you should check your F-150 just to be certain. Weight Loss Gimmick More Likely to Harm than Help The toning shoe weight loss fad has quickly swept across the nation, with lofty claims of increased fat burning and muscle toning while conducting your everyday routines. Toning shoes are sold under a number of different brand names, the most popular of which is the Sketchers Shape-Up. These shoes could help curb the increasing obesity epidemic and improve general health if they actually worked. However, they do not work and they also pose a risk of serious injury. Advertising for the popular shoes asserts that the design alters the wearer s walk, forcing the muscles to work harder to perform normal walking motions. The truth is that extended periods of walking on altered or uneven surfaces is well-established to cause serious falls and chronic injuries, including stress fractures, joint injuries, and tendon and ligament injuries. For some, the risk of injury still may not be enough to deter them from use. However, a study commissioned by the American Council on Exercise concluded that, There is simply no evidence to support the claims that these shoes will help wearers exercise more intensely, burn more calories or improve muscle strength and tone.
7 Recent SETTLEMENTS Jeff Boyd Jeff Boyd represented a West Tennessee county sheriff s deputy whose car was t-boned while accompanying a funeral procession. The deputy sustained a painful herniated disc in his neck and underwent a surgical fusion. This county does not have workers compensation coverage to assist with the $37,000 the deputy incurred in medical charges. Boyd settled the case for $105,000 at mediation. Hill-Boren attorney Jeffrey Boyd represented a Goodyear employee who sustained a back injury on the job. While worker s compensation covered treatment and medications, the injury aggravated a pre-existing anxiety and panic disorder. The employee will require medications for the remainder of his life. Jeff Boyd settled the case for $158,224 with lifetime medical benefits. An employee of a local shipping company sustained a herniated disk while attempting to close a gate that had frozen solid due to bad weather. His condition required surgery, but during his medical leave, he was laid off. The man was forced to take a much lower paying job that requires heavier physical labor. Hill-Boren lawyer Jeff Boyd took this case to trial, where a judgment was received for $75,200. with future medical benefits for life. James Krenis Hill-Boren attorney James Krenis recently represented a Dyersburg man who suffered from a devastating bone disease as a result of his work. When the plant he had worked at for twenty years closed, Krenis pushed the company for more compensation for the man s current and future medical bills. The case was settled for $75,000. James Krenis helped recover money for a woman who sustained a torn rotator cuff during an auto accident that occurred while she was traveling for her work. Krenis settled this worker s compensation case for $25,000, to help the victim cover the expenses she incurred from treatment, medication and lost time on the job. When a Dyer County man required four surgeries to correct injuries he incurred at the job he had held for twenty-three years, Hill- Boren lawyer James Krenis fought to get the man the compensation he needed. Although his employer was bought out by another company, Krenis secured a settlement of the maximum permanent partial disability award or $80,000 with future medical benefits left open for life. James Krenis recently represented an Obion County man, who sustained a painful injury to his leg at a water park in Southern Kentucky. The pool at the bottom of the slide was not deep enough to prevent the man from hitting the bottom and the water park was found negligent. Krenis, along with co-counsel, secured a $200,000 settlement to compensate for the man s injuries. When an injured Carroll County employee was offered only $24,000 in worker s compensation for her extensive shoulder, elbow and wrist injuries, attorney James Krenis decided to take her case to trial. With an arsenal of doctor testimonies, Krenis got the victim $60,000 in benefits for her temporary and permanent disabilities. James Krenis represented a Hardeman County woman in reopening two previously settled worker s compensation claims. Because she had returned to work after the original claims were filed, her benefits had been capped. The cases were reopened when the woman was laid off and she received more than two times the money she had received in the original claims. Attorney James Krenis represented three different State of Tennessee employees who were injured on the job and returned to work after treatment. Krenis fought to get them lifetime future medical treatment, permanent partial disability money and the right to reconsider each claim if they were laid off or became unable to work due to their injuries.
8 116 P.O. Box 3539 Jackson, TN June 08 September 2011 La primera consulta es totalmente gratuita. Le ofrecemos la máxima confidencialidad. Hablamos español. Return Service Requested visit us at Dangerous Product Docket Battat B FunKeys The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission and toymaker Battat, Inc. issued a product recall for B. FunKeys, a toy key set with remote. This recall affects an estimated 1,080,000 consumers in the U.S. and another 3,600 in Canada. Both the metal toy keys and the plastic key ring can break, posing a choking hazard. If your child has been injured by using Battat B. FunKeys or any other hazardous product, contact a Hill-Boren representative today. Circo Child Booster Seats Around 375,000 Circo Child Booster Seats were recalled in June 2011 due to a faulty restraint buckle, which can open unexpectedly, allowing a child to fall from the chair and be injured. These booster seats were sold at Target stores nationwide from 2005 to June If your child has been injured by a malfunction of this or any other product, Hill-Boren can help your family get the compensation it deserves. NAPA fire and FIREGEL In June, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, in conjunction with Napa Home & Garden, recalled nearly half a million bottles of NAPA fire and FIREGEL pourable gel fuel after reports of fire and burn hazards. The product was sold at numerous national home and garden stores between December 2009 and June According to reports, the fuel can ignite unexpectedly and splatter onto people and objects nearby, resulting in at least 23 burn injuries to date. If you or someone you know has been injured by use of this product, contact Hill-Boren.
107 June 2009 The Lawyers Of Hill Boren s Desk VOLUNTARY LAYOFFS, BUYOUTS, SEVERANCE PACKAGES, WOLVES IN SHEEP S CLOTHING? 1 1 2 2 3 5 5 T. Robert Hill Ricky L. Boren Christopher L. Taylor Jeffrey P. Boyd
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