Frankfort Kentucky Personal Injury Blog

Military law blocking malpractice wrongful death suits challenged

Since 1950, members of the military have not possessed the right, enjoyed by civilians in Kentucky and across the nation who receive care from doctors or hospitals, to file medical malpractice lawsuits against military doctors or hospitals. But Congress may remove part of this legal privilege blocking these lawsuits. This bill could lower the bar to the filing of lawsuits by military personnel or the filing of wrongful death lawsuits by their families.

Almost 70 years ago, the US Supreme Court ruled that active duty service members could not sue for medical malpractice. The ruling allowing this exception, generally known as the "Feres" doctrine, was based upon a law intended to prevent lawsuits against medics providing care in combat. However, this doctrine prevented lawsuits for malpractice committed outside combat situations.

Wayne Newton's monkey at issue in animal bite lawsuit

A dog bite injury usually comes to mind when hearing news about an animal bite lawsuit. But that there may be many types of animal bites underlying court actions in Kentucky and across the U.S. For example, a woman is suing Las Vegas entertainer Wayne Newton for injuries suffered by her daughter during an invited tour of Newton's mansion in 2017.

Her daughter, then 15 years-old, received emergency room treatment for a bite to her right wrist that was allegedly made by Newton's capuchin monkey named Boo. They claim that Boo attacked the girl without any provocation during a tour of Newton's extravagant estate, Casa de Shenandoah. The plaintiffs also charged that the monkey was not in a cage or on a leash during the tour.

Your rights when distracted drivers cause fatal wrecks

Distracted driving is more common than people realize. Recent research, for example, found that the average driver travels over three miles each day while distracted. Smartphones have created the ultimate temptation for people to take their eyes and minds off the road. It is difficult, if not impossible, for people to ignore the notifications that come pouring in from their phone.

Many people may glance down for a moment, but those seconds add up. Even those who check their devices at stop signs and traffic lights can remain mentally distracted for some time, after they look up from their phone.

Who is responsible when a dog attacks?

Most of personal injury law is concerned with the ways humans can hurt each other through carelessness. But what about when a dog causes the injury?

Kentucky law holds dog owners strictly liable for injuries caused by their dogs. Strict liability means the injured party doesn't have to prove that the owner knew the dog was dangerous before the attack, or did anything in particular that was wrong before the attack. As long as the owner's dog caused the injury, the owner can be held liable for the injured party's damages.

More Americans killed in car accidents than World Wars I, II

People in Kentucky may have become accustomed to seeing traffic accidents on a regular basis. They may not know, however, just how serious the scope of this problem is. According to recent research, more people in the United States have died in car accidents since 2000 than in both World Wars.

There were over 624,000 car crash fatalities over the last 19 years. By comparison, 535,000 service personnel died in World Wars I and II. Over 30 million people suffered injuries in crashes.

Kentucky state parks may be responsible for injuries

Legal liability for slip-and-fall and other accidents are not restricted to supermarkets or other commercial areas. State parks may also assume premises liability for accidents caused by negligence or hazardous conditions.

Park visitors may be injured in car accidents, drownings, slip and falls and electrocutions at Kentucky state parks, federal parks and parks in other states. Wildlife contact and tree branches can also lead to injuries that are more unique to these areas.

Easing trucking drive time rules could lead to truck accidents

Trucking regulations limit the number of hours that drivers of commercial vehicles can be on the road. These rules are meant to combat fatigue and they apply to truckers across the nation, including those right here in Kentucky. But the U.S. Department of Transportation may weaken the federal regulations restricting driving hours even though safety advocates claim that this will increase the risk of truck accidents.

In 2017, there were 4,657 fatal accidents involving a large truck. Sixty of the truckers involved in those accidents were classified as being asleep or fatigued. But the National Transportation Safety Board claims that this problem is probably underreported on police accident reports.

Hit by someone from out of state? Consider this

On I-75 and I-64 you've probably seen your fair share of crashes. Combined with so many people who drive through the area to get to Tennessee, Ohio, Louisville and other populated locations, it's no wonder that there are so many collisions. People from various states are trying to follow their own state rules, even though the only driving rules that matter are Kentucky's while in the state.

If you're coming in from out of town or were hit by someone who was, the truth is that everyone should have been following Kentucky's driving laws. Someone who causes an accident because they don't realize that U-turns are legal or who aren't familiar with bike lanes should be held accountable for those actions.

Ways to keep stores safe

Retailers have a duty to keep their customers and employees safe. They must be aware of the risks posed by their location, merchandise, and brands. Providing inadequate security and failing to implement reasonable procedures can be grounds for a premises liability lawsuit.

Employees should receive security awareness training. Store policies must require them to pay attention to the sales floor and should contain rules, such as no smartphone use when they are on their shift. Employees need to receive guidance on recognizing workplace violence and reporting and managing a potential safety problem. They should know how to use the store's security systems.

Bill would restrict truck speed

Limiting truck speeds to 65 mph would prevent between 63 and 214 deaths each year, according to a Department of Transportation regulation proposal. Because this proposal has been languishing for almost 10 years, two senators introduced a bill that would electronically restrict tractor-trailer speeds to 65 mph. The bill's proponents claim that it will prevent fatal truck accidents.

There are 1,115 deadly accidents involving heavy truck annually on roads with speed limits of 55 mph or higher, according to the bill's sponsors. Most trucks in this country are equipped with speed-limiting software. But, this device is not always used. Most other countries require this device to limit truck speeds.

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