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smithfield workers compensation lawyerWorkers’ compensation is an invaluable resource for those who get injured at work. However, many workers have preexisting conditions that can be aggravated by work or which are made unbearable by injuries that happen at the workplace. Unfortunately, workers’ compensation insurance companies often try to avoid paying out fair settlements to injured workers, especially those with preexisting conditions. Preexisting medical conditions can give insurance companies an excuse to point to other causes than work. 

You may still be able to receive workers’ compensation after you suffer from a workplace accident if you had a preexisting condition, but it may be an uphill battle. If you were hurt in a work-related incident, make sure to work with an experienced North Carolina workers’ compensation attorney who can help you fight for your rights. 

How Do Preexisting Conditions Affect Workers’ Compensation Payments? 

Generally speaking, employers in North Carolina should not ask you about your medical history and should not have access to it. However, if you were injured at work and need to file a workers’ compensation claim, you are responsible for disclosing a preexisting condition. Workers’ compensation payments are not required to cover a preexisting condition per se, but they can certainly be required to cover a preexisting condition that has been aggravated by a workplace incident. 

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Charlotte car crash injury lawyer Getting in any kind of serious car accident can be a traumatic experience, to say nothing of the physical danger and potentially long-term health implications of such a crash. But suffering in a car crash because somebody decided to drive drunk can be one of the worst kinds of crashes to endure; not only will you have to deal with the painful and expensive healing and recovery process of a typical car accident, but you know that if not for the irresponsible driver’s actions, the accident would likely never have happened in the first place. If you or someone you love has been injured in a drunk driving car crash in North Carolina, you may be considering taking legal action against them. Having a personal injury attorney in your corner will help.

Is a Drunk Driver Responsible Always for a Car Accident? 

Although the driver of the vehicle you crashed into may have been drunk, that does not necessarily mean that he or she will be found responsible for the accident. In fact, if you contributed to the car crash at all, you likely will not be able to recover any compensation for the damage the accident caused. North Carolina personal injury claims fall under “pure” contributory negligence laws, so any contribution on behalf of the plaintiff bars recovery. It is important to talk to an attorney to determine whether you likely share fault for the accident, because shared fault can also result in an insurance company that is going to fight giving you fair compensation. 

How Much Time Do I Have to File a Lawsuit? 

Every state has a statute of limitations for bringing lawsuits in personal injury cases, and North Carolina is no exception. Generally, the statute of limitations for car accident lawsuits is three years from the date of the crash. However, if someone died in the accident, and a loved one wants to bring a wrongful death claim, they have only two years from the date the person died. 

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raleigh expungement lawyerEven with the best criminal defense attorney, it is not always possible to avoid convictions for crimes. An unfortunate feature of our criminal justice system is that a criminal record often makes someone continue to pay for their crimes, sometimes long after that person has paid back their debt to society. Worse, even being arrested for or charged with a crime without being convicted can have the same effect. If you have a criminal record and are wondering whether you can get it wiped clean, speak with a North Carolina criminal defense attorney with experience in record expungement

How Can I Get My Criminal Record Expunged? 

It is important to note that North Carolina law uses the term “expunction” rather than “expungement,” but that these terms mean exactly the same thing and can be used interchangeably. An expunction is the erasure of a criminal record by order of a judge. After a criminal record has been expunged, the person for whom it was expunged can honestly say that they have not committed that crime (with exceptions for certain immigration purposes). 

The criminal records that can generally be expunged in North Carolina include, but are not limited to: 

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Wake County personal injury lawyerGetting seriously injured in a car accident can upend your life. You may be unable to work, get around comfortably, or enjoy any of the things you used to be able to do. Even if your injuries are not life-threatening or severe, a car accident can have a major impact on your life, causing major disruptions that take time, effort, expensive medical treatment, and personal therapy to overcome. 

When these kinds of injuries happen because of someone else’s negligent or intentionally dangerous driving, you deserve to recover compensation. The other driver’s insurance company knows this - but they are also trying to stay in business and make money. This may lead to an insurance company lowballing you in an offer for compensation, hoping that you will not have a personal injury attorney who knows their tricks and who will fight for your rights. Here are five reasons a North Carolina insurance company does not want you to hire a personal injury lawyer after a car accident. 

Personal Injury Attorneys Know How to Prove Fault

Investigations are an important part of personal injury claims, especially when there is confusion or disagreement about why an accident happened and who is ultimately responsible. Personal injury attorneys know how to conduct thorough accident investigations, including collecting video evidence, witness testimony, and accident reconstruction evidence to prove liability on the part of the other driver. 

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Wake County personal injury lawyerAccidents with public transit vehicles tend to result in serious injuries - after all, buses, trains, trams, and other forms of public transit are usually much larger than passenger vehicles, and collisions commonly cause catastrophic injuries or death. But public transportation agencies owe a duty of care to prevent avoidable injuries, and when the driver, operator, or a mechanical defect is responsible for an accident, the transportation agency could be held liable. If you or someone you love has been injured or killed in an accident with a North Carolina public transit vehicle, read on to learn how a personal injury attorney can help. 

Why Do I Need a Lawyer in a Public Transit Accident Case? 

If a government agency’s liability in an accident is clear, the agency may want to work quickly with victims to settle a claim brought by the victim or his or her family. However, this settlement offer may not reflect the full extent of the harm done by the accident - for example, by not covering the full value of a victim’s lost wages, medical expenses, or a family’s long-term grief from the loss of a parent or child. 

An attorney can guide you throughout the claim process, handling complex paperwork and legal matters so you can focus on recovering. An attorney will complete a full investigation, determine who was responsible for the accident, and negotiate on your behalf to make sure the city compensates you for the full value of your claim. 

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Abogado de Inmigración de Raleigh

Si un inmigrante a los Estados Unidos recibe una visa para venir a los EE. UU. para casarse o permanecer en los EE. UU. debido al matrimonio, puede pedir permiso al gobierno para traer a sus hijos al pais. Este es un servicio esencial que ayuda a unir y mantener unidas a las familias, a menudo después de muchos años de dolorosa separación. Desafortunadamente, el proceso de visa familiar puede ser largo y complicado, y a menudo requiere la ayuda de un abogado de inmigración con experiencia en Carolina del Norte. En Vasquez Law Firm, PLLC, estamos aquí para ofrecerle esa ayuda, para que pueda optimizar el proceso de solicitud y darle a su familia la mejor oportunidad de reunirse con usted aquí en los Estados Unidos.

Opciones para Visas de Inmigración Familiar

Las familias de todo el mundo se encuentran en muchas situaciones diferentes y la visa que se adapta a una familia no es necesariamente adecuada para lo siguiente. Antes de que un cónyuge no ciudadano pueda presentar una solicitud para traer a sus hijos a los EE. UU., primero se le debe aprobar una visa propia. Las posibles opciones de visa para cónyuges e hijos de cónyuges no ciudadanos, y las circunstancias en las que pueden estar disponibles, incluyen:

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Abogado del Condado de Wake

Lesionarse en el trabajo es una de las cosas más frustrantes y desalentadoras que le pueden pasar a un empleado. Después de todo, cuando pasas casi la mitad de tu vida trabajando para una empresa, sufrir una lesión grave puede parecer una mala recompensa. Cuando una empresa decide investigar un reclamo de compensación laboral basado en su incidente en el lugar de trabajo, esto puede agregar insulto a la lesión. Puede sentir que su empresa no confía en usted o que es injusto que lo sometan a una revisión después de todo lo que ha pasado.

 

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 Abogado de lesiones por accidente automovilístico del condado de Wake

Los conductores en los Estados Unidos pagan un promedio de alrededor de $ 150 por mes por el seguro del automóvil. Mientras que para algunas personas esto no parece mucho dinero, para otras parece demasiado para pagar. Independientemente de las finanzas personales de uno, Carolina del Norte requiere que los conductores tengan al menos un seguro de responsabilidad civil para que, si causan un accidente automovilístico, la persona a la que golpean no sufra. Sin embargo, las estimaciones de conductores sin seguro aún rondan el 10 por ciento.

 

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raleigh workers compensation lawyerGetting injured on the job is one of the most frustrating and discouraging things that can happen to an employee. After all, when you spend nearly half of your life working for a company, it can feel like poor payback to be seriously injured. When a company decides to investigate a claim for workers’ compensation based on your workplace incident, this can add insult to injury. You may feel as though your company does not trust you or that it is unfair that you should be subjected to a review after everything you have been through. 

However, because workers’ compensation is paid out by insurance companies that have a financial obligation to protect their company’s well-being, they can investigate claims to ensure there are no fraudulent cases. While being subject to an investigation may make you feel uncomfortable, if you have a legitimate workers’ compensation claim and a great attorney by your side, you have nothing to worry about. 

What Do Insurance Companies Investigate? 

Insurance companies paying workers’ compensation want to see employees get to work and stop collecting workers’ compensation payments as soon as possible. When claims are filed for significant or permanent injuries, insurance companies may be especially motivated to make sure they are not making enormous payouts based on fraudulent claims. 

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Wake County car crash injury lawyer Drivers in the United States pay an average of about $150 per month for car insurance. While for some people, this does not seem like a lot of money, to others, it seems like too much to pay. Regardless of one’s personal finances, North Carolina requires drivers to have at least liability insurance so that if they cause a car accident, the person they hit does not suffer. Yet, estimates of uninsured drivers still hover around 10 percent.  

If you do get into a car accident that was caused by someone without car insurance, you may naturally feel distraught. After all, why should you pay for damages that you did not cause? With the help of a Raleigh personal injury attorney, you may be able to recover compensation for your injury and property damage, even if the other driver does not have car insurance.

What Steps Should I Take After Getting in a Car Crash with an Uninsured Driver? 

Taking the proper steps immediately following an accident can protect your options when it is time to pursue compensation. If you are hit by an uninsured driver, be sure to do the following if it is safe: 

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hombre robandose mercancía de una tienda escondiendola bajo su sudadera

Según la ley de Carolina del Norte, cualquier cargo por robo, sin importar el valor, se considera "robo". Los cargos de hurto, que caen bajo el paraguas de delitos penales de delitos contra la propiedad, pueden variar desde delitos menores hasta delitos graves. Las condenas pueden dar lugar a penas severas, como servicio comunitario, tiempo en la cárcel y multas elevadas. Sin embargo, una de las consecuencias más preocupantes de una condena son los antecedentes penales posteriores, que pueden empañar la reputación y dificultar la obtención de un empleo.

Afortunadamente, podría haber circunstancias atenuantes en su caso de hurto que reduzcan sus posibilidades de condena. Un abogado defensor penal puede explicar los cargos y las posibles sanciones y ayudar a construir una defensa eficaz.

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Wake County shoplifting defense lawyerUnder North Carolina law, any theft charge, no matter the value, is considered “larceny.” Charges of larceny, which fall under the criminal offense umbrella of property crimes, can range from misdemeanors to felonies. Convictions can result in stiff penalties such as community service, jail time, and hefty fines. One of the most troubling consequences of a conviction, however, is the subsequent criminal record, which can tarnish reputations and make securing employment difficult. 

Fortunately, there could be mitigating circumstances in your larceny case that reduce your chances of conviction. A criminal defense attorney can explain charges and possible penalties and help build an effective defense.

Two Types of Misdemeanor Larceny

Under the law of North Carolina, shoplifting or stealing merchandise from a retail store is divided into the following two categories. 

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Raleigh work injury lawyerIn 2020, over 80,000 North Carolinian, private-industry employees sustained injuries or illnesses at the workplace. That same year, there were 189 workplace fatalities. These alarming statistics do not include injuries incurred in the public sector. The North Carolina Workers' Compensation Act mandates that all private companies provide workers' compensation to employees. This coverage is akin to no-fault insurance, meaning an injured employee does not have to prove fault to recieve benefits.

Sometimes, however, employers and insurance companies contest what is rightfully due to the injured or ill employee. A workers' compensation attorney can help negotiate compensation for injured or permanently disabled parties. 

Four Benefits Included Workers’ Compensation

If evidence of the injury, illness, or death proves to be work-related, the compensation could include the following.

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north carolina boat crash lawyerNorth Carolina's expansive waterways of lakes, rivers, and the Atlantic Ocean, are a recreational epicenter for boating. With 390,305 registered boats that navigate North Carolina's waterways, locals and tourists alike enjoy this popular water activity. In 2020, there were 187 boating accidents with 24 fatalities, making North Carolina one of the nation's leading states in watercraft accidents.

A personal injury lawyer adept in state maritime rules and regulations may be able to secure monetary compensation for injuries, or a fatality, on behalf of the victim or the victim’s family. The statute of limitations for filing a personal injury lawsuit in North Carolina is three years from when the boating accident occurred. However, a wrongful death lawsuit is limited to two years from the accident.

Eleven Common Boating Accident Injuries and Fatalities

Boating accident injuries can be traumatic and devastating. Although most injuries suffered in boating accidents are minor, some are so severe that the victims are not fortunate enough to recover fully. Recovery can take an emotional and financial toll on the victim and the victim’s family. Severe injuries can cause life-altering repercussions, like paralysis or brain injury. Tragically, some catastrophic boating accidents result in the loss of life. A personal injury lawyer will help pursue compensation for boating accident injuries, like the following.

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What Is a Presentence Report?

Posted on in Criminal Defense

Raleigh criminal defense lawyerIn some cases, a criminal cases, conviction is unavoidable no matter how good your attorney is. Pleading guilty is sometimes the best move, and trials are always a risk because juries can be wildly unpredictable. After you are convicted or plead guilty, your case moves into what is called the sentencing phase. During this time period, the court will consider a large amount of information to determine what the appropriate sentence might be.  

In some felony or high-level misdemeanor cases, the judge may order a probation officer to conduct what is called a presentence investigation. A lawyer can help you during this period by emphasizing the good facts and circumstances that might lead to a lighter sentence and contextualizing or explaining any issues that could lead to a harsher sentence. Preparing for this phase requires strong criminal defense skills. 

What Information Does a Presentence Investigation Cover?

The goal of a presentence investigation is to put your offense into context so that the court has all the information it needs to determine an appropriate sentence. When these investigations are ordered, they can be extremely important. A good presentence report can mean the difference between prison and probation for some people. Information about you that may be gathered during a presentence investigation includes your: 

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Raleigh hit and run accident lawyerWhile all car accidents have the potential to be dramatic scenarios, nothing compares to the feeling of being involved in a hit-and-run accident. Hit-and-runs occur when a driver strikes another person, vehicle, or property and drives away. According to North Carolina law, if a car accident causes any injury or property damage of at least $1,000, the individuals involved must stop and exchange contact information. If you were injured due to a hit-and-run accident, you may be eligible for financial compensation.

Always Seek Medical Attention After Being Hurt in a Car Crash

If you are hurt in an accident—either as a motorist or pedestrian—it is imperative that you go to the hospital immediately. Although you may think your injuries are minor at the time of the accident, the actual pain of your injuries may be masked by adrenaline. When this “fight or flight” hormone is no longer in your bloodstream, you may realize you are injured far worse than you realize. Delaying medical treatment may aggravate your injuries and reduce your chances of receiving compensation for lost wages or medical bills.

Collect as Much Information as Possible and Speak with Witnesses

Every hit-and-run is different. Sometimes you might not even see who or what hit you, let alone a license plate number. If you do see the vehicle that caused the accident, try to make a note of the model, make, or color of the vehicle. If you can, snap a picture of the vehicle or take note of the license plate number. Even a partial license plate number can help police figure out the perpetrator. Furthermore, get names and contact information of anyone who saw the accident. They may become valuable witnesses in the future. It is vital that individuals involved in a car accident write this information down as soon as they are able. The emotional nature of an accident can make recalling information by memory very difficult.

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Raleigh immigration and criminal defense lawyerThe short answer is maybe. In some cases, a criminal conviction can lead to deportation. In other cases, you may be allowed to serve any sentence you are given and remain in the country. The end result depends on several factors, including which crime you are convicted of. If you are not a U.S. citizen at the moment and get charged with a crime, it is very important that you contact an attorney who understands both criminal defense and immigration law. There is too much at stake for you to take any chances with your future in this country. Once you are convicted, the immigration court is likely to take that conviction at face value even if you later have grounds for getting it expunged or otherwise done away with. 

Which Crimes Can Lead to Deportation?

Minor misdemeanors usually do not trigger deportation proceedings, but some more serious misdemeanors can. The line between a deportable offense and a non-deportable offense is not the line between misdemeanors and felonies. Instead, the standard is that “crimes of moral turpitude” can get you deported even if you are here legally. This is not always a very well-defined standard, but it typically encompasses crimes that include some element of dishonesty or suggest that you are a danger to others. Additionally, some aggravated felonies will automatically trigger deportation.

Crimes that can lead to deportation include, but are certainly not limited to: 

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Raleigh criminal defense attorneyWhile everyone would like their criminal charges to be dismissed completely, or to be found not guilty, this is not always a realistic outcome. In some cases, there is overwhelming evidence, like when a crime is clearly captured by security cameras. In other cases, the risk of going to trial and being found guilty is intolerable to the defendant. In cases like these, the best course of action may be to accept a plea bargain. A plea bargain is essentially a deal worked out between a defendant, his lawyer, and the prosecutor. In exchange for a guilty plea, the prosecutor may offer reduced charges or reduced sentencing. Always consult an experienced criminal defense attorney who can evaluate the situation before agreeing to a plea bargain. 

How Does the Plea-Bargaining Process Work?

Typically, the prosecutor makes the first offer to your attorney. This begins the negotiating process. If you have a victim, their opinion may be taken into consideration. You and your attorney will discuss each offer the prosecution makes. This is where having an experienced criminal defense lawyer really helps - they will have a better understanding of how fair or reasonable a given offer is. Eventually, your lawyer and the prosecutor will arrive at a “final offer.” Your options then are to take the final offer or go to trial. 

What Are Some Benefits of a Plea Bargain?

The advantage of trial is that there is always a chance - however slim - that you could be found not guilty, in which case you are free to go with no consequences and no record. The risk is that you could be found guilty even if you are not, in which case you could face harsh sentencing. 

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Raleigh car crash lawyerAfter a car accident, you may be in a state of shock, especially when you or someone you care about has been injured. It can be hard to think clearly. When the driver who caused the crash whips out their wallet and approaches you with an offer, it may be tempting to take it for a number of reasons. It seems easy. You have their plate number. You do not want to deal with an insurance company or a court if you do not have to. However, before you take any kind of “handshake deal” on the side of the road, you may want to know why some drivers may do this—and why taking such a deal is almost never a good idea. Your best bet is to refuse, file a police report, and call a lawyer. 

Reasons At-Fault Drivers Might Have for Offering a Verbal Settlement

A driver who has caused an accident would not make an offer on the side of the road if he did not think it would ultimately benefit him in some way. Often, these drivers are trying to hide something or escape complete liability in some fashion. 

Reasons the driver who caused your crash might be trying to settle on the scene include: 

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Wake County domestic violence charges attorneyThere is often much more than meets the eye in domestic violence cases. The classic narrative of an abusive man hitting his wife or girlfriend and going to jail for it simply does not reflect the reality in most contemporary domestic violence cases. Domestic violence most frequently occurs in the home, away from the prying eyes of potential neutral witnesses. Police often arrive to find a chaotic scene and very upset individuals. In the absence of obvious injuries, it can be quite difficult to figure out exactly what happened and who is primarily responsible for any violence that may or may not have occurred. If you are facing domestic violence charges, there are a few facts and considerations surrounding this charge that you should be aware of. 

What Should I Consider if I Have Been Accused of Domestic Violence?

Whether you are guilty or not, being charged with domestic violence has the potential to be a life-altering offense. Due to the not-always-accurate assumptions surrounding these cases, your career or educational opportunities could be affected. If you are up against this charge, you should be aware of these concerns: 

  • Self-defense - It is strikingly common for the victim of intimate partner abuse to be arrested while attempting to defend themselves. Abusers can be shockingly convincing when the police arrive. 
  • Family matters - The definition of domestic violence in North Carolina is not limited to violence between those who are currently in a romantic relationship. Violence between other close family or household members as well as former romantic partners can lead to domestic violence, rather than simple assault, being charged. 
  • False allegations - Allegations of domestic violence are often made during a contentious divorce or even a serious argument. These allegations are sometimes false, and made for the purpose of gaining the upper hand in divorce or child custody proceedings. 
  • Protection orders - After a domestic violence arrest, you may be served with a protection order, at or even in advance of your arraignment. This order will likely instruct you not to return to the premises where the alleged assault occurred or to contact the victim. In most cases, this means you cannot go home. It is very important that you obey this order - you do not want to be arrested a second time for violating it. Return to the premises only accompanied by the police to gather your personal items as the order instructs. 
  • Difficulty of dismissal - Even if the alleged victim wants to drop the charges, they may not have that choice. Prosecutors are very reluctant to dismiss domestic violence cases and may continue to prosecute these cases even over the victim’s objections. 

True domestic abuse is a very real problem in our society, across every socioeconomic level. However, domestic violation allegations do not always reflect the reality of your situation. If you have been charged with domestic violence, it is important to secure strong legal representation. 

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