Drunk Driving Accident/Texas Dram Shop Law/Social Host Accidents

November 13, 2019
Are you suffering from the loss of a loved one and/or did you or a family member get hurt by a drunk driver?  These situations can and should have been avoided, however, the fact remains that they do occur, and it is extremely important that you talk to a qualified attorney to immediately discuss the possibility of pursuing a  personal injury lawsuit or Texas Dram Shop case.  WHAT IS THE TEXAS DRAM SHOP LAW? Dram shop is a legal term in the United States referring to a bar, tavern or the like where alcoholic beverages are sold. Traditionally, it referred to a shop where spirits were sold by the dram, a small unit of liquid.  Dram shop liability laws hold alcohol servers responsible for harm that intoxicated of age patrons or underage patrons caused to other people (or, in some cases, to themselves). The statutory duty not to sell or deliver alcoholic beverages to intoxicated persons applies to and is intended to protect, among others, the intoxicated patron. In Texas, Dram Shop Laws exist to protect the rights of Texans to live a safe and healthy life. The laws may protect you and your loved one’s ability to recover when harmed. Typically, a dram shop statute is only applied when it is proven that an establishment continued to serve alcohol when they knew that a person was visibly or obviously intoxicated.  Talk to your legal counsel if you believe that you may have a Dram Shop case.  LEGAL ALCOHOL LIMITS IN TEXAS Liability of the Drinking Establishment The legal blood alcohol content (“BAC”) limit in Texas is .08%. A person exceeding this limit statistically has a much higher chance of causing an accident. At the same time, alcohol-fueled accidents tend to be more serious than those which don’t involve alcohol. Alcohol depresses the central nervous system which in turn slows down a person’s reflexes, making it harder to react and avoid an accident. What’s the alcohol limit in a bar? The limit is “obvious intoxication.” Many signs of intoxication are clear and obvious. Things such as slurred speech, droopy or red eyes, cloudy judgment, lack of inhibitions, aggressiveness and poor balance all point to the fact that a person is obviously intoxicated. The number of drinks served to a customer can also be an indicator of whether or not the individual is obviously drunk. Drinking establishments are NOT ALLOWED to serve alcohol to anyone who is already obviously intoxicated. If a bar employee notices that they’ve over-served a patron, they may opt to call a cab for the drunken individual in order to ensure that no one is harmed in a DWI accident. However, being responsible from the get-go by not serving an individual past the point of obvious intoxication should always be their first course of action. SOCIAL HOST LIABILITY LAWS In addition to dram shop laws, Texas also has a social host liability law. This law allows injured parties to seek damages from hosts aged 21 and older who served alcohol to minors who then caused injuries to another person because of their intoxication, if under § 2.02 […] Read more

AVIATION and HELICOPTER Related Injuries

November 4, 2019
If you have lost a loved one or have suffered injuries, damages, or death as a result of an aircraft-related injury (ie. planes, helicopters, passengers of an airline), you may want to speak with a lawyer. “Every day, the FAA’s Air Traffic Organization (ATO) provides service to more than 44,000 flights and 2.7 million airline passengers across more than 29 million square miles of airspace.” https://www.faa.gov/air_traffic/by_the_numbers/ Airplane and helicopter travel has become normal within the business community, as well as, the means of transportation for hundreds of thousands of people on a daily basis. The number of these aerospace travelers will only begin to increase as ride-sharing companies begin to use drones and other unmanned vehicles.  There are many different factors that can cause or contribute to the cause of an airline accident. Some of the most known factors at issue in aviation accidents include: Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) regulation violations; Defective Design and/or materials; In-flight Instrument or Avionics Failure; Negligent Maintenance or repair (faulty equipment); Pilot error; In-flight icing; Fueling errors; Problems in the design of the aircraft; Bird Strikes; Flight servicing employee negligence; Negligent behavior of a third party; FAA air traffic controller negligence; HELICOPTER ACCIDENTS Helicopters are widely used in a number of areas for travel including the military, private transportation, oil industry, news industry, air ambulance, offshore transportation, and tourist attractions. Many helicopter related accidents have revealed that helicopters can be very difficult to maneuver, especially for a novice pilot.  An added factor to difficult maneuvering is the fact that helicopters are non-fixed wing aircraft, making them able to land in various locations which are closer to on-ground dangers such as radio control towers, utility wires, mountains, or tall buildings. As a result of the powerful impact forces involved in a helicopter crash, the likelihood of those occupants sustaining severe and disabling injuries and fatalities is great. Due to the severity of helicopter crashes, there are obviously many different situations that can lead to a crash or flight complications.  Some of these factors include: Pilot error; Mechanical malfunction;  Electrical malfunction; Product design; Maintenance deficiencies; Poor helipad designs; Improper flight inspections; While there can be one or numerous reasons for airplane and helicopter crashes, the urgency to retain a competent attorney is of the utmost importance.  When retained, counsel will start an immediate investigation into the causation of the incident that includes but is not limited to: Retaining experts; Searching the NTSB database; Searching the FAA records; Investigating the pilot’s experience and qualifications; Obtaining information retrieved from the black box; Obtaining the daily weather report; Obtaining air traffic control records; Locating witnesses and obtaining statements; Obtaining the airplane or helicopter maintenance records; etc. These events are highly complex cases and require an in-depth knowledge of aviation law. The Caquias Law Group, PLLC obtains the services of aviation experts from throughout the country to prove difficult personal injury cases on behalf of our clients. The Caquias Law Group, PLLC has the human and financial resources and experience to use top aviation experts to obtain justice for victims of helicopter crashes, commercial airline crashes, or personal aircraft crashes. If […] Read more

What Types Of Car Insurance Coverage Are There?

October 2, 2019
Hindsight is 20/20. As a personal injury law firm, you can imagine that many people ask what kind of car insurance they should carry. Sadly, many people only begin to question the type of insurance, if their insurance company has quality customer service and the injured party’s best interest, and if they (the “insured”) has enough insurance coverage if they are involved in a wreck until after they or a loved one have been injured in car crash.  Well, at this point you may be asking yourself, “what does my insurance premium really include?” You may be thinking that you have “full coverage” and so you are completely covered for all of your losses and that you can get back to work and on the road without any hassle. Many times, that is not the case. Many times, injured people have to fight to get the at-fault driver’s insurance to pay the damages. Even more aggravating, many times the injured party not at fault has to fight their own insurance to cover their damages or excess damages not covered by the 3rd party insurance.  Here is a list of various insurance coverages you available: Liability Insurance.  The coverage that is likely required by the State.  This will cover claims filed against you when you are at fault. Texas limits are 30/60 for “bodily injury” and $25k for property damage.  Which means that it will pay $30,000.00 for one person and up to $60,000.00 for other passengers. Higher limits are available; however, they will only be paid to people involved in an accident in which you are at fault. Personal Injury Protection (PIP).  The limits available are $2,500.00, $5,000.00 and $10,000.00.  This coverage is for protection to you and anyone who is with you at the time of the accident.  This coverage can be used for your medical bills and up to 80% of your lost wages. It does not matter if you are at fault or not;  Uninsured/Underinsured Coverage (UM/UIM).  This coverage is to protect you if you are hit by a person who is not insured or if the person who hits you has a minimal insurance policy and your injuries and damages are higher than their policy limit.  This coverage is for you and your passengers who are injured. In order to file a claim against Uninsured Motorist Coverage, you cannot be at fault. The Texas limits start at 30/60 and can be as high as you want to insure yourself and your passengers. Be sure to ask your insurance person to verify and explain all of your types of coverage; Full Coverage.  This coverage will only contain Liability (for the people in the other vehicle), comprehension and collision.  This coverage is required by your lienholder as it will only assure that your vehicle is repaired. This coverage will not pay for any medical bills incurred if you or your passengers are injured.   Medical Payments (Med Pay).  This coverage is also for you and your passengers, however, if you are able to recover from the at-fault party, you must reimburse the insurance carrier for any money paid.  Many […] Read more

Oil Field Injury Accidents

September 29, 2019
While the oil industry is booming and striving in Texas, the fact remains that the job sites are inherently dangerous for the employees.   Oil rig workers can and do get killed and/or seriously injured as a result of preventable accidents.  Investigations into these accidents often reveal that the employers are violating state and federal safety regulations by failing to implement comprehensive safety and training programs placing their profits in front of the workers’ safety. These findings are alarming because accidents are occurring on a daily basis.  Some of the most common accidents can stem from the following: Oil truck accident; Falls and rigs collapsing; Crane failures; Derrick accidents; Fires and explosions;  Electrocution; Defective machinery; Toxic fumes exposure; Compressor stations; Pump jacks; Work jacks; Blowouts; Job Site Deaths A Year – Across Industries  According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (“OSHA”), 5,147 workers died on the job in 2017 [https://www.bls.gov/news.release/cfoi.nr0.htm] (3.5 per 100,000 full-time equivalent workers) — on average, more than 99 people die from work-related / job site accidents per week.  In the United States, MORE THAN 14 PEOPLE DIE FROM JOB-RELATED DEATHS A DAY. https://www.osha.gov/oshstats/commonstats.html  COMMON CAUSES OF OILFIELD ACCIDENTS Without understanding the underlying causes of oilfield accidents, employers can and should take steps to reduce risk on a job site. Some of the most common contributing factors for oilfield accidents include: Inadequate training; Inadequate safety measures; Inadequate supervision of employees; Carelessness; Faulty equipment; Unanticipated environmental hazards; Human error; OIL FIELD DEATH AND INJURIES Unfortunately, these types of accidents are often so significant that either the employee loses his/her life or sustains serious and permanent injuries.  Common Oil and Gas Rig Injuries: Traumatic brain injury;  Amputation of limbs;  Crushing Injury Burns;  Loss of vision; Loss of hearing; Respiratory illness from chemical inhalation and exposure; Nerve damage; Spinal injuries; Internal injuries; Fractures; Disabling injuries; and Permanent disfigurement If you lost a loved one or if you were injured while working at the rig site, you may be entitled to compensation for your losses.      Here at the Caquias Law Group, we have our engineers and other experts that will investigate the facts surrounding your injury to confirm what safety rules were violated, to determine if it was caused by faulty equipment and determine who caused or contributed to your accident.   Call 210-996-2237 today to schedule your free oil rig injury or death consultation. We are here to help and serve clients injured on the oil field nationwide. Read more

Construction Related Death Or Serious Injury Claims

September 18, 2019
Hundreds if not thousands of construction workers are seriously injured or killed each year as a result of dangerous conditions or hazards that exists at a construction site. In fact, work injuries are so common that the Occupational Safety and Health Administration has published a “Construction’s ‘Fatal Four.’” (continue reading for figures) In 2017, 4,674 workers died on the job site while working for a private company, 971 or 20.7% of those workplace deaths were in construction — that is, one in five worker deaths last year were in construction.  “The leading causes of private sector worker deaths (excluding highway collisions) in the construction industry were falls, followed by struck by objects, electrocution, and caught-in/between. These “Fatal Four” were responsible for more than half (59.9%) of the construction worker deaths in 2017, BLS reports. Eliminating the Fatal Four would save 582 workers’ lives in America every year.”  Falls – 381 out of 971 total deaths in construction in CY 2017 (39.2%) Struck by Object – 80 (8.2%) Electrocutions – 71 (7.3%) Caught-in/between* – 50 (5.1%) (*This category includes construction workers killed when caught-in or compressed by equipment or objects, and struck, caught or crushed in collapsing structure, equipment, or material) See More Stats: https://www.osha.gov/oshstats/commonstats.html COMMON QUESTIONS: What about the injured workers that have immigration issues? Can I file a claim for a work injury or wrongful death if I am not a United States citizen? Will filing a claim in court affect my immigration status? Many injured workers may feel intimidated by their employers and the risk of losing their jobs if they file a claim, others may be scared to get a lawyer for the fear of being deported because of their immigration status. Because of these fears and assumptions, injured workers don’t get the help that they need to recover and so they continue to work through their suffering. Don’t be that injured worker, seek counsel. Caquias Law Group has helped many injured people in this situation. Call today for your free injured worker consultation. YOUR IMMIGRATION STATUS DOES NOT AFFECT YOUR RIGHT TO FILE A CLAIM. Don’t let your immigration status be a factor in not standing up for your legal right to recover for injuries and damages sustained while in the course and scope of your employment.  Some of the most common situations that lead to these types of claims include: Defective products; Defective construction equipment; Premises liability and dangerous conditions; Defective building materials; Dangerous condition deadly falls; Defective product electrocution; Misuse of cranes; Falling objects;  Dangerous generators; Asbestos products; Defective tires; Defective Cranes; Defective forklifts; Hidden holes,  Lack of proper lighting; Improper design of stairs; Improper security; Negligent use of construction equipment; Hazardous and/or hidden traps; Electrical problems; Dangerous defects; Negligence and careless actions; Negligent co-workers; Negligent construction companies; Negligent subcontractors; Other dangerous conditions; Toxic Exposure Claims- includes Dangerous chemicals; Chemical solvents; Explosive agents; Toxic waste;  Blackwater sewage; Insecticides; Mercury; Asbestos products; and  Petrochemicals When a family member is killed or seriously injured as a result of a hazardous work environment, hazardous work equipment, hazardous work-related activity or the negligence of a person or persons […] Read more