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California car crash injury attorneyAccording to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, some 2.5 million Americans experienced an auto accident injury that required emergency medical treatment during 2012 (the most recent year for which statistics are available). Overall, that same care is expected to cost victims some $18 billion throughout the course of their lives. Those accidents also cost victims about $33 billion in lifetime employment earnings.

While not all accidents can be prevented, there are ways that victims can mitigate their risks. This is especially true when it comes to reducing the risk of serious injury - and all starts with choosing the right vehicle for you and/or your family.

Using Safety Ratings to Choose Your Vehicle

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Fremont business law attorneyFew small business owners are raking in the cash. In fact, many have only a month or so of reserve in place, should an emergency closure happen. It is this lack of financial security that can place small businesses at serious financial risk during a lawsuit. California state recognizes that risk and has taken proactive steps to protect small business owners from lawsuits under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Learn more about this protection, and why it is important, with help from the following.

Understanding the Americans with Disabilities Act

The ADA was put in place to protect those with disabilities. It explicitly prohibits the discrimination against any individual with disabilities in the workplace, public accommodation, government activities, transportation, and communication. All this essentially means that employers, businesses, transportation providers, and even government agencies must accommodate disabled persons according to the law.

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Fremont personal injury lawyerAmerica is full of busy people. There are workers rushing to their jobs, and parents shuffling their children off to school and soccer practice. Then there are those who are running late to a doctor’s appointment, or in a hurry to get to the airport. Unfortunately, all that hustle and bustle means that some drivers are going faster than they should. That can increase their risk of causing an accident, and may also lead to more serious injuries for victims. If one has happened to you or someone you love, know your rights - including your right to pursue full and fair compensation.

Respect for Speed Limits is Deteriorating

While most people do recognize that speed limits are the law - not a suggestion - researchers suggest there is an erosion of respect for those laws. In fact, a 2002 study found that one-third of drivers admitted to regularly driving at least 10 miles an hour faster than other road users. These were all self-reported incidents, which suggests the numbers could be much higher.

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Fremont estate planning lawyerWhen children grow up and start their own families, grandparents may want to consider a reevaluation of their current estate plan to ensure they have made provisions for their grandchildren. This may be especially critical if there are any special circumstances, concerns, or issues within your family. Learn more about leaving an inheritance for grandchildren with help from the following information.

Making Provisions for Minor Grandchildren

Leaving behind a gift or inheritance to a minor child (those under the age of 18) is a fairly complex matter. You cannot simply leave them the assets and hope it all works out. Instead, you must appoint a guardian to manage and oversee the assets until the child becomes of age, or until they are able to manage the money on their own.

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Fremont personal injury lawyerTraumatic brain injury can happen to anyone, and at any age. When it does, the end result can be catastrophic. This is especially true in cases involving serious injury and excessive brain swelling. Unfortunately, there are no medications to treat the swelling at this time - only drugs that help to improve the end outcome of patients who manage to survive. Thankfully, recent studies suggest an answer may be on the horizon, but with one major catalyst: it may only work in adults.

Antibiotics and TBI Swelling in Children and Adults

The potentially deadly implications of TBI do not typically come from the injury itself. Instead, it is generally caused by the post-injury swelling of the brain. Previous studies have suggested that genetics may play a role in the severity of this swelling, but no one really knows why some are more prone than others to rapid and life-threatening swelling.

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California business law attorneyAlthough federal law does not require that employers give their employees rest breaks, state law does. As such, employers within the state of California must comply. More than that, employers must understand that there are no exceptions. A recent California Supreme Court ruling confirms this. The following information explains the California’s rest break law, ensuring you have the information you need to protect your business and avoid litigation.

Minimum Work Hours for Rest Breaks

As outlined by the Industrial Welfare Commission Wage Order, employers must offer all employees a rest period that is within the middle of any work period that amounts to three and one-half hours or more. So, for example, any employee that works a four hours shift should take their rest break two hours into their shift - or at least as close to that time as practical. For example, an employer may stagger the rest periods of employees who started work at the same time to avoid a workflow interruption. Any employee that works less than three and one-half hours is not entitled to a rest break under the California state law’s guidelines.

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Fremont wrongful death accident lawyerApproximately 30,000 fatal auto accidents occur each year. In those crashes, there are victims – loved ones that were taken from their families. Grief, anger, resentment, financial loss, and immeasurable emotional devastation are in the aftermath of that loss. Some immediately search for justice. For others, the thought of pursuing a claim seems like an insurmountable challenge – one best avoided until after the grief and pain have subsided. Unfortunately, by then, it may be too late. If you have lost someone you love in a car crash, understand why you should pursue a wrongful death claim, and how an attorney can help to ease your burden in the difficult journey ahead.

Compensation is Not Meant to Replace Your Loved One

Often, the families of victims are put off by the idea of a lawsuit because they feel it is pointless. Money will not bring back what was taken from them, and the grief of drudging it all up seems hardly worth it. They look at it as punishing someone else when, in reality, the compensation is about easing the burden they bear, and may continue to experience, as the months and years pass.

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Fremont estate planning lawyerWhen married persons create an estate plan, both parties are generally involved. What can you do, though, if you want to get serious about planning your estate and your spouse is still reluctant to get on board? Nagging certainly will not do the trick, nor will threatening or begging. Still, there are some ways that you may be able to ensure your heirs do not miss out. The following information explains further, and it provides some strategies for dealing with a spouse who seems reluctant to get on board.

Do What You Can On Your Own

While it is often best to have your spouse's support before creating an estate plan, you may not ever be able to persuade them to get on board. This does not mean you cannot create an estate plan on your own. Assets that are yours - solely yours - can be drafted into an estate plan, regardless of whether or not your spouse participates in the process. Further, you can ensure you have named your power or attorney for health or financial decisions, should you become incapacitated.

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Fremont auto accident injury lawyerCell phone use behind the wheel has always garnered a lot of attention. After all, texting and driving is thought to be responsible for some 1.2 million accidents per year. However, it is getting a lot of media attention during the trial of a woman who crashed her car on a highway in 2013. Three girls – the woman’s daughter and her two nieces – were killed in that crash and, according to the prosecution, a Facebook message was posted just moments before.

Details of the Case

Though acquitted on her charges, the woman was charged with negligent murder for allegedly using Facebook while driving down a dangerous section of Wisconsin Highway 35. The roads, which were slick that night, caused her to lose control of her vehicle. Moments later, a semi-truck hit the SUV. The three girls did not survive the crash, and the woman who had been charged with their deaths, was ejected from the vehicle and suffered a traumatic brain injury that has impaired her memory.

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Fremont business law attorneyAnother year has nearly ended, and a new one will soon begin. With that welcoming of the new year, business owners will need to make some changes to ensure they are compliant with the business law changes for 2017. Is your company ready? Find out with help from the following overview of the upcoming changes to come, and learn where you can get assistance with any last minute preparations.

Minimum Wage Increase in California

Over the next several years, the minimum wage in California will increase to $15 an hour. January 1, 2017 marks the date of the increase. As a result, employers with 26 or more employees will be obligated to pay no less than $10.50 an hour in the coming year. Small businesses with 25 or fewer employees are being given until 2018 to adhere to the increase, but they should begin planning now to ensure they are able to transition with less difficulty.

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Fremont personal injury lawyersTransport vehicle crashes (school busses, city buses, intrastate and interstate buses, etc.) can be caused by a variety of factors, including those related to the driver, other road users, and weather conditions. Some are unpreventable. Others contain an element of negligence. Failure to perform maintenance on a transit vehicle is one prime example, and it happens far too often. Learn more about this concerning form of negligence, and what your rights are if you or someone you love has been injured or killed in a transport vehicle accident.

Vehicle Maintenance and Negligence

Like all vehicles, transport vehicles need regular maintenance to ensure the safety of the driver, passengers, and other road users. Yet, because they are considered commercial vehicles, they have a much greater responsibility to the public. As such, they are held to higher standards and must adhere to certain regulations. Failure to do so – in any way, shape, or form, including vehicle maintenance – is considered negligence. They can be held liable for this negligence if innocent victims are injured or killed in a crash. This includes not just passengers of the vehicle itself, but also pedestrians, bicyclists, motorcyclists, and other motorists.

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Fremont estate planning attorneysThinking about the end of your life is not an easy task – especially if you are still fairly young or currently in the prime of your life. Yet failing to do so can have serious consequences for you and those you love the most. Of course, you are not alone. In fact, statistics suggest that only about half of all Americans have a valid will. Do not continue leaving your family unprotected. Learn how creating a will can improve the future of your family, and how you can create one that protects everyone’s best interests.

How Creating a Will Can Protect You

People do not generally consider how a will can help them, yet there are some clear benefits to having one. If, for example, you become incapacitated, a will can help ensure your wishes are followed. Further, you can name someone you trust to make any medical decisions you have not already considered. It is also possible to assign someone to watch over your financial affairs. In short, a will can protect and preserve your interests in the face of the unthinkable.

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Fremont personal injury lawyerCorporations, insurance companies, and other businesses are notorious for trying to find ways to cut costs. Sadly, those cuts sometimes have a negative effect on low income, disadvantaged, or otherwise vulnerable people. Undocumented immigrants pursuing a personal injury claim were once a prime example. However, California passed a law earlier this year that now protects them. The following helps to explain why that protection is important, and how it can help secure a future for injured immigrants.

The Old Law Gave Defendants a Money-Saving Loophole

Prior to the new law, defendants could use a loophole that saved them a tremendous amount of money on personal injury lawsuits with illegal immigrants. They could legally investigate and bring up the illegal status of the plaintiff in court, which would result in the losses for income to be calculated based upon the immigrant’s home country. In many cases, this amount was significantly lower than the compensation would have been for a U.S. citizen.

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California business law attorneyNo matter how hard you work to hire quality employees, there will likely come a time that you must terminate one. It could be a matter of performance. It could be a matter of attendance. Or it could be related to theft or breach of contract. Whatever the situation, it is critical that you, as an employer, know how to protect yourself from wrongful termination lawsuits and discrimination lawsuits. The following information explains further and provides you with some key tips on legally terminating an employee in the state of California.

Understanding Employment at Will

Like most states, California lets business owners employ “at will.” This means that you can terminate an employee for almost any reason, or even no reason at all, as long as employment contracts and other documentation do not contradict your right to employ at will. (If you have questions about this, you should contact an experienced business attorney for sound legal advice.)

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Fremont personal injury lawyersMotor vehicle accidents do not just harm adults. In fact, statistics from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) indicate that car crashes are the leading cause of death among children in the United States. Many more are severely or permanently injured. If you are a parent and facing such a situation, the following can help you understand your options for pursuing compensation.

Injuries Commonly Sustained by Children in Car Crashes

Because of their smaller size and developing bodies, children are often more prone to severe injury than adults. Even more concerning is that serious injuries may not always be immediately evident in young children. This is especially true for traumatic brain injury (TBI), which just so happens to be the injury most commonly sustained by children in a crash. Other common injuries include those to the thoracic area and spinal area. However, children can also experience fractures, soft tissue injuries, and lacerations, much like adults can.

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Fremont estate planning attorneysPeople often assume that estate planning is for the rich, or for those nearing the end of their life. Is this really true, though? Does everyone need to create an estate plan, or is it just for certain people? Is there a correct time to start?  Or are these just common misconceptions that get in the way of planning for the future? The following can help you better understand the purpose, intent, and timing of estate planning, and why you should consider creating one, regardless of your income level.

Not Just or the Rich

Despite the misconception surrounding estate planning, the process is not just for those that have a lot of money, property, or assets to leave behind. In fact, even those with little to no assets can benefit from estate planning. There may be family heirlooms or trinkets that your children or other heirs may want. You may have final expenses, and someone you trust may need to close out your bank account, social media accounts, or other personal accounts. Further, if you have children, it is important that you name a guardian for them to ensure they are raised by someone you trust.

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Fremont personal injury lawyerUber, one of the fastest-growing rideshare companies, just released a fleet of self-driving cars in Pittsburgh. That, in and of itself, might not be problematic (at least not at first glance). However, autonomous cars are still very much in the developmental phase. When you add this to Uber’s sordid history, and the alleged requirement that riders sign liability waivers before riding in one of the self-driving cars, it appears that Uber could be trying to find even more ways to avoid liability for negligence in automobile accidents.

Want a Ride? Sign a Waiver

As reported by The Guardian, rideshare users in the Pittsburgh area were required to sign waivers that released Uber from all liability, should an injury or death happen in one of their autonomous vehicles. In return, they let users ride, free of charge. The company recently released a statement saying that users no longer have to sign the waiver, but the implications are clear.

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Fremont business law attorneyEarlier this month, California Governor Jerry Brown signed the California Secure Choice Retirement Plan into law. With that single act, more than 7.5 million workers in the state were given the right to receive access to a retirement savings plan through their employer. What will all this mean for your small business come next year? The following explains.

Why the Law Was Enacted

Statistics from the National Institute on Retirement Security estimate that some 45 percent of private-sector employees do not have access to a retirement account. They do have the option to create their own individualized plan, yet most do not. In fact, AARP estimates that just five percent of all workers who do not have direct access to an employer-based retirement account actually contribute to an individual plan. Considering the current strain on social security, and the lack of saving for most Americans, the numbers are concerning to legislators across the entire country. California took action by signing the Secure Choice Retirement Plan into law. Now other states are considering it as well.

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Fremont CA defective products attorneyThe United States Department of Transportation recently issued an emergency ban on all Samsung Galaxy Note7 devices on airplanes. That means, if you have one, you must either leave it at home or relinquish it during your security check if you hope to board. Why is this happening, and what is the real risk here? Further, do individuals that may have suffered some ill effects from the defective devices have any sort of recourse? It all depends. The following information explains further.

Why the Recall and Ban?

According to information on Samsung’s recall page, the Galaxy Note7 is at risk for overheating. What they do not tell you is that more than 100 of these devices have spontaneously burst into flames. The initial recall was issued after 35 incidents, but it has recently issued yet another to try and get users to turn in their devices. They are reportedly even offering an incentive to those who hand over their defective phones in exchange for either another Samsung phone, or even a phone from one of their competitors. Further, the company has completely stopped making the defective devices after attempts to fix the defect proved to be unsuccessful.

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Fremont wills and trusts attorneyYou spent most of your life working, have planned carefully for your retirement, and have probably even made efforts to ensure there will be something left over for your children or loved ones. Unfortunately, you may have overlooked one crucial detail – your will. A single oversight in this document can drastically cut into any provisions you may have set aside for those who survive you, and it may even lead to family conflict. The following information on the most common estate planning mistakes can help you avoid such issues.

No Will? You Are Not Alone

Statistics indicate that some 64 percent of Americans have not yet drafted a will. About half of those people say they just do not need one, or they simply have not gotten around to doing it yet. Unfortunately, this is the most critical mistake you can make in your estate plan. It leaves everything up to probate, which can take months (or years) to sort out and often leads to a significant depletion of your assets. Any and all heirs can come forward (including those that you might not have otherwise provided for). Further, any special needs of loved ones that you might have been concerned about (i.e. special needs children, etc.) may not be addressed.

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Willett Law Firm

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Fremont, CA 94538

Phone: 510-791-2244

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