Silvi, Fedele & Honschke Attorneys at Law, L.L.C.
Phone 732-504-3841 Toll Free 877-251-5491

Ocean County Workers' Compensation Law Blog

Does Workers' Comp pay death benefits?

When someone you love dies due to the fault of another, it may seem monstrous at first to think in terms of compensation for that loss, especially if that loss occurs in your immediate family. Shock and grief are overpowering emotions that can blot out everything else. Unfortunately, New Jersey has a two-year statute of limitations to consider when filing a wrongful death lawsuit, which may sound like a long time at first, but really is not in the legal field. As you juggle your personal life to absorb the impact of loss—including the very real financial loss— there are many legal steps that need to be taken as well.

If the death occurred on the job, dependents may qualify to receive weekly benefits in the amount of 70 percent of the decedent’s weekly pay, according to the state government’s Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development. The benefit amount is divided among all dependents as decided by a judge; this allows consideration for children of a previous spouse who did not live with the deceased but are still dependents, as well as any current spouses and children who were not living with the deceased at the time of his or her death. Children remain dependent until they turn 18 or, if attending school full-time, 23 years of age.

Why estate planning is not just for rich people

When it comes to the topic of estate planning, many people dismiss the idea without even having any information about it. The word "estate" often conjures up ideas of vast sums of wealth and assets, and people who do not have a high net worth think that estate planning is not for them.

This could not be further from the truth, however. Estate planning is for everyone because it gives the tools to ensure a smooth transition of assets and legal matters following death. It is never too early to begin thinking about estate planning, regardless of your income level.

Dental malpractice can be deadly

New Jersey residents, like other news followers, have likely heard the horror stories of doctors removing the wrong organ, amputating the wrong limb, or leaving surgical tools inside of patients. You may not realize that dentists make errors, too, and some of them can be deadly, especially those that involve infections after tooth extractions, oral surgery and other procedures.

Dental malpractice is a growing concern. Dentaltown advises dentists to expect to be confronted with such claims at some point in their careers and lists the most known types of dental malpractice as:

  • Lack of informed consent from the patient
  • Dentist fails to refer the patient to a specialist
  • Failing to correctly treat complications resulting from dental work, such as infection
  • Failure to correctly carry out prosthodontic work such as crowns and bridgework
  • Failing to diagnose conditions, including gum disease, cancer and infections

Airbag recall biggest in U.S. history

Ocean County drivers must realize the risks of the road, which are often increased by other drivers who are inexperienced or careless. Texting, speeding and DUI drivers endanger thousands of lives every year, and so do defective products. Add bad products to dangerous driving conditions and the risk potential only increases.

According to the United States’ National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, airbags manufactured by Japanese manufacturer Takata are a factor in more than 23 deaths and 300 injuries worldwide. A massive recall of the airbags has grown in numbers from several thousand in 2008 to top more than 50 million by 2018. The airbags are installed in car and truck models from 19 world-leading automakers, including Ford, Nissan, Honda and Chrysler, and affect 37 million vehicles.

Wrongful death lawsuit filed against defunct flight school

Anyone that has ever participated in an activity in Ocean County that could be viewed as dangerous may likely have been presented with a liability waiver prior to doing so. Things like flying, sky diving, scuba diving or parasailing carry with them certain risks, so it may be understandable why the companies that sponsor such activities may want to limit their liability. That limitation typically comes from participants recognizing that what they are doing is potentially dangerous and thus assuming responsibility for any outcomes that may result. Do liability waivers and agreements, however, protect companies in instances where they may have been negligent? 

A recent mid-air collision that occurred in Florida may serve as a good example of such a scenario. The accident involved two students from a flight school. Their aircrafts collided nearly head-on, killing both them and their instructors. This occurred despite conditions being favorable and visibility high. Following the accident, it was revealed that the plane carrying one of the student-instructor pairs was allowed to take off without first being warned that the other pair was already in the air and would be flying in the same general location and at the same altitude. Subsequent investigations into the flight school that owned the planes and employed the instructors showed that it had experienced numerous incidents prior to this latest tragedy. The school has since closed. 

What Is Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy?

Chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) is a  serious medical condition that can occur after a person sustains repeated head injuries. This condition can cause lifelong effects and has even been associated with an increased risk of depression and suicidal thoughts. The Mayo Clinic offers insight into CTE and the impact it can have on people, including risk factors and associated symptoms.

Causes of CTE

What are the responsibilities of an injured employee?

Any kind of injury has the potential to traumatize a victim. Getting hurt is not just physically painful—it is often emotionally taxing and financially straining as well. The impact of an injury might be even worse when it happens at work. You were simply trying to do your job, but instead, you suffered an injury that might make you unable to work for a while. What do you do, and what are your responsibilities? 

Your employer has several obligations that must be fulfilled, but you also have a few responsibilities that you must keep in mind following an injury at work. Following are three examples of the responsibilities that you must act on after you have been injured on the job—no matter how big or small the injury. 

How do you revoke a will in New Jersey?

Those who see to their estate planning early on in their lives in Ocean County are to be commended. Yet circumstances can change over time, and the wishes and desires of a testator may evolve with them to the point of him or her wanting to completely change his or her earlier will. Yet often times it may not be enough for your family member or friend to simply amend his or her old will; rather, the entire document may need to be completely revoked. The question then becomes how does one do that. 

You can find the exact guidelines on how to revoke a will in Section 3B:3-13 New Jersey's state statutes. If your loved one has a flair for the dramatic, he or she can choose to revoke a will through a "revocatory act." This may include: 

  • Burning a will
  • Tearing it up 
  • Otherwise completely obliterating it

Reviewing New Jersey's dram shop laws

Given the danger that drunk drivers pose to other motorists in Ocean County, you might question how is that such people are allowed to driver after drinking. You might expect one's friend or acquaintance to not allow him or her to get behind the wheel after having had one too many, yet what about those establishments that serve alcohol to patrons? Should they share in the liability if those patrons then drive and subsequently cause accidents? Such is the question that many have brought to us here at Silvi, Fedele & Honschke Attorneys at Law. 

Almost every state has adopted statutes referred to as "dram shop laws." These laws assign vicarious liability to businesses that serve alcohol to drivers who then cause car accidents. The term "dram shop" itself hearkens back to the time period where liquor and other alcoholic beverages were sold by a units known as "drams." Today it specifies those unique situations where you might be able to go after whomever assisted the driver that hit you in getting drunk. 

What are damages per quod?

Many often question why one would file a wrongful death lawsuit in Ocean County given that no monetary reward can bring his or her loved one back. While that assumption overlooks the fact that you and others who suffer through the unexpected loss of a loved one often require compensation to help deal with costs of your family member or friend's death (along with the financial void he or she leaves behind), it is true that amount of money may assuage your grief. More important than the financial assistance that your loved one provided may have been the companionship you enjoyed with him or her. Can you be compensated for that loss, as well? 

Per the Civil Jury Charges issued by the New Jersey State Judiciary, a jury can reward you for being the following benefits your relationship with your loved one provided: 

  • Companionship
  • Comfort
  • Consortium (marital relations)
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