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Shelbyville Law Blog

Improve safety with these distracted driving tips

You may be a safe and cautious driver. That doesn't mean all other drivers who share Kentucky roadways with you are the same. In fact, some are outright menaces to all who share their travel space. Distracted driving is one of the biggest causes of personal injury and fatal motor vehicle collisions. Have you ever been distracted at the wheel? If you answered, "Yes," you are definitely not the only one. Distraction occurs much easier than many people realize.

For instance, if your child wants to show you something from the back seat while you're driving and you turn around to look at it, you are distracted for however long it takes until you refocus your eyes and attention back on the road. Prevention is the best means for safety when it comes to distracted driving dangers. It's also a good idea to know where to seek support if your safe driving plan is interrupted by a distracted driver who causes a collision, resulting in your injury.

Credit card debt on the rise

Many people in Kentucky are currently living with some amount of credit card debt. This isn't unusual as many households throughout the U.S. use credit cards to manage their personal finances. However, when credit card debt becomes unmanageable, people may need to seek debt relief options.

In fact, a recent study shows that America's credit card debt levels are at what they were in 2007 before the Great Recession. While credit card default rates remain significantly lower than they were during the Recession era, defaults have been creeping up, possibly in response to credit card companies' loosening standards.

The many symptoms of soft tissue injuries

Car accident victims in Kentucky may be suffering from soft tissue injuries without knowing it. Injuries to soft tissue, which includes the muscles, ligaments and tendons, cannot be detected by X-ray. Therefore, a correct diagnosis can sometimes be difficult. Since symptoms often appear days after the incident, many victims choose to delay treatment.

These injuries occur when the impact of a collision causes the soft tissue to stretch, which causes strain, spraining or tears. Symptoms include chronic pain and inflammation as well as bleeding and loss or diminishment of motor and sensory functions. In whiplash, one of the most well-known forms of soft tissue injury, a victim may experience shooting pains and a burning, tingling sensation in their neck.

Being sued for medical debt? Consider filing bankruptcy

Like most Kentucky residents, you know how expensive medical care can be these days, and having insurance doesn't always make it better. Rising premiums and high deductibles make most people avoid going to the doctor for what they consider minor health issues and injuries.

Then, you experienced a sudden and serious injury or illness. You probably had no choice but to seek medical attention. By the time you left the hospital, you already owed thousands of dollars -- even with insurance. Any follow up care you required only added to the ever-growing pile of medical bills in your mailbox. Unable to pay them, you ended up being sued for payment.

How bankruptcy impacts vehicle ownership

An individual going through bankruptcy in Kentucky doesn't necessarily have to give up their vehicle during the proceedings. This may be true even if the lender was otherwise inclined to repossess the car. When a person files for bankruptcy, they receive an automatic stay of repossession or other creditor collection actions. Generally speaking, if the debtor agrees to make payments during the three or five year repayment plan, they can remain in possession of the car.

In some cases, it's possible to buy a vehicle during an open Chapter 13 case. Doing so requires approval from the bankruptcy trustee as well as a bankruptcy judge. A lender will include relevant loan information such as the monthly payment, interest rate and down payment on a sample statement.

Depression, stress increase women's risk for work injuries

Researchers have just concluded a study that points out striking differences between the injury rates among men and women workers. Though the results will require further research to better understand, employees and employers in Kentucky may want to take the findings into account.

By collaborating with the insurer Pinnacol Assurance, the Colorado SPH's Center for Health, Work & Environment was able to analyze the workers' compensation claims of 314 businesses. Close to 17,000 employees, ranging from laborers to executives, were represented in this study. Researchers found that nearly 60 percent of the women who filed a claim reported that they were suffering from a mental or behavioral health condition before getting injured. By contrast, 33 percent of men said they were affected by such a condition.

Learning more about credit card debt balances

Americans had a collective credit card debt balance of more than $1 trillion in 2017. This was according to data from the Federal Reserve. However, that debt isn't necessarily spread evenly throughout the country. A survey looked to see which cities had the most debt as well as which cities had the highest debt burden. The survey listed the top 25 most populous cities in order of their average debt balance per resident. The data did not include Kentucky.

It found that the District of Columbia. had the highest average debt balance per resident. It also found that its residents had one of the lowest debt burdens amount cities included in the survey. This was because those living there had the highest median income of cities surveyed at $46,536. It would take someone ithere 14 months and cost $613 in interest to repay an average balance of $7,442.

Chapter 13 bankruptcy may help you get your repayments on track

Whether you have struggled with your finances for years or recently experienced a sudden event, such as a medical emergency or job loss that led to financial difficulties, you know that these issues can affect most areas of your life. You may find yourself unable to pay for necessities or other items without the nagging feeling that you owe a considerable amount of money to creditors. Often, the stress that comes along with substantial debt can leave you feeling overwhelmed.

If you feel that the time has come to fully address your debt issues, you may consider bankruptcy. Though many people speak of this option in hushed tones as if it is a negative last resort, bankruptcy can actually offer many benefits to individuals needing financial relief. For some individuals like you, Chapter 13 bankruptcy may be worth a closer look.

Possible changes to mortgage modification rule

A growing trend in Chapter 13 bankruptcy cases has affected the way residential mortgages are treated in bankruptcy court. A series of decisions from bankruptcy courts has expanded the application of so-called "cram down" mortgage modifications. Should this trend spread to Kentucky bankruptcy courts, it may have a major effect on debtors who own property.

In Chapter 13 bankruptcies, current law allows the modification of mortgage agreements in some circumstances. A cram down modification is a tool used by some debtors with underwater mortgages. The modification bifurcates the mortgage claim and reclassifies any mortgage debt above the value of the property as unsecured debt. This is important because any unsecured amounts will be discharged once the bankruptcy is completed. The net result of a cram down modification is that the mortgage is no longer underwater. However, current bankruptcy rules do not allow cram down modifications for a debtor's primary residence if the debtor was living in the residence at the time the bankruptcy was filed

How to keep workers safe in a warehouse

When a warehouse employee in Kentucky or anywhere else suffers an injury at work, the employer often comes under fire. However, there are steps that companies can take to keep workers safe. First, employers should make sure that employees are following protocols at all times. By not taking shortcuts, workers cab significantly reduce their odds of getting hurt on the job.

Furthermore, employees should be properly trained on how to use equipment and in any other roles that they may perform. In some cases, it may be the machine that is the problem rather than human error. Ideally, companies will invest in machines that can both maximize safety while helping to improve productivity at the same time. Lift assist technology has shown to reduce injury rates by making it easier to move heavy items.

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