Monthly Archives December 2012

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Lawsuit Filed over Hormone Replacement Therapy

A Texas family has filed a wrongful death lawsuit over hormone replacement therapy. The lawsuit alleges that the drug companies that manufacture the products used in this therapy downplayed or concealed the risks of the drugs and that they have little or no actual benefit to the patient. This type of therapy has been in use since the 1940s and is used to treat the symptoms of menopause.

What it Does

Hormone therapy aims to decrease the severity of menopausal symptoms. Those symptoms include the loss of bone density, hot flashes, irritability and many others. Some of the symptoms, such as the loss of bone density, have serious health implications and others, such as hot flashes, primarily affect the woman’s quality of life. According to the lawsuit, the therapies that employ hormone replacement offer little or no value to the patient and present real risks.

The Risks

The hormones used in these therapies include a mix of natural and synthetic hormones that are designed to replace those that the woman’s body no longer produces in adequate amounts. Some of the same hormones are used in birth control pills and have been linked to potential life-threatening conditions, such as deep venous thrombosis, where a blood clot forms in the deep veins in the legs and, when broken loose into the bloodstream, can lead to fatal conditions such as pulmonary embolisms, heart attacks and strokes. The drug manufacturers, for their part, hold that the medicines used in the treatment of menopause have always carried warning labels and that patients are given every opportunity to understand and decide whether or not they want to accept the associated risks.

Old Therapies and Lawsuits

Most of the time, when you hear about a claim over a dangerous drug, it will be over a drug that is relatively new on the market. This is not always the case, however. Accutane, for instance, was prescribed for many years before a slew of lawsuits and a black box warning changed the way it was used. It was established in many of these lawsuits that Accutane did present very real risks to the patient’s health and even their life, even though it had been in use for so long.

If a treatment has been around for a long time and you have been injured by it, that doesn’t mean that you cannot pursue a lawsuit for damages or wrongful death. You’ll need to speak with an attorney about the matter, of course, because they are the only professionals who can let you know whether or not it’s likely that you’ll have a chance of winning your claim. If they believe that you do, they may take you on as a client and help you to pursue compensation.

 

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Farmers Insurance Pays out $140 Million in Class Action

Farmers Insurance has agreed to a settlement for $140 million over the mishandling of claims related to car accidents. The lawsuit alleged that the insurance giant managed to get away with not paying anything at all or paying less than it should have on its medical payment claims and its personal injury protection claims for people harmed in car accidents.

These accidents and the claims that followed were filed between January 2001 and January 2009. The claimants will get 60 percent of the difference between the cost of their medical bills that they submitted to Farmers and the amount that Farmers actually paid them.

The settlement, according to the company, was agreed to because the company didn’t want to go through any more expenses related to litigation. It was possible that the jury award could have been very high if they had gone to trial, as well, a common reason that defendants sometimes offer a settlement in lieu of going to court.

If you believe that you should have been a part of this settlement, you can still fill out a form online to see if you qualify.

What Are Class Actions?

Sometimes, there are so many people who have such a similar claim against a defendant that it makes more sense to have all of their cases heard together than it does to have them all go through the court system separately. This is the reason behind a class action. The many different claimants in the case are referred to as a class and a small number of representative cases are tried to determine whether or not those plaintiffs, as a class, are entitled to the compensation that they’re seeking.

Insurance Companies and Lawyers

Lawyers can be of great assistance if you’re having a problem with your insurance company. Your insurance company does have very real obligations to you and, if they fail to live up to them, it may be worth your while to file a lawsuit to persuade them to give you what you deserve. The attorney you hire will, of course, be much better equipped to deal with a contract issue-which an insurance policy really is-than you are and that enables them to figure out where the insurance company may not be living up to its obligations fully.

Talking to an Attorney

A Houston personal injury attorney will usually be willing to sit down with you for free to discuss any claim you think you have. This gives them an opportunity to see if they can help you or not. If they cannot, they’ll just let you know; but, if they can, they may well want to help you get the compensation that you’re entitled to.

 

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Trucking Companies and Lawsuits

The investigation into the 100-car pileup over Thanksgiving south of Beaumont involves one couple who were killed by an 18-wheeler in the accident. Whether or not the trucking company, the trucker or anyone else was negligent in causing this accident remains to be determined. Investigators are still hard at work trying to figure out how the accident occurred at all. Where 18 wheelers are concerned, however, there are some particular hazards that people should be aware of and some options that they may have available to them if they lose a family member or are themselves injured in such an accident.

Drivers and Fatigue

A frightening number of drivers who make their living behind the wheels of semi trucks find themselves driving long after the point where they are exhausted, according to multiple reports. Studies have also demonstrated that driving drowsy is just as dangerous as driving drunk. When you combine the hazards that a massive vehicle such as a semi truck poses on its own with a drowsy driver, you have a recipe for disaster.

Sometimes, the drivers themselves are to blame for driving when they should be resting, and sometimes the companies they work for push those drivers far too hard. Either way, anyone who is hurt or the family of a person who is killed by a drowsy trucker should contact a personal injury attorney about the matter. There are labor standards that apply to how much rest time anyone driving a commercial vehicle must have and, if the company or the driver violates those standards, an attorney may be able to help.

Unmaintained Vehicles

One of the other major hazards posed to drivers on the highways by semis comes from 18-wheelers that are not properly maintained. Maintaining a semi truck requires qualified mechanics and requires that those mechanics adhere to a very strict schedule. These vehicles need to be inspected each and every time they go out on the road and they need to be fixed according to standards set forth by state and federal authorities when there is a problem.

There are cases where investigations will reveal that a truck was not properly maintained when it was sent out on the road. In such cases, a jury may very well find that the trucking company was negligent in not providing its driver with a safe vehicle and that the negligence directly contributed to injuries or deaths resulting from an accident.

Never take a settlement check from the trucking company without speaking to an attorney first. The attorney may be able to get you enough money via jury award or settlement to pay for your property damage, medical injuries or the loss of a loved one.

 

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