Published on:

Matthew R. Arnold of Arnold & Smith, PLLC answers the question “What should I do if I have been injured by another party but I can’t afford a lawyer?”

 

A woman who is married to an American National Football League player has sued the investment firm that terminated her employment, alleging that her dismissal was based on racism and sexism.

Lawrence Okoye Charlotte Injury Lawyer Plaza Midwood Accident AttorneyThe woman—twenty-seven-year-old Philippa Okoye—said that a coworker at financial consulting firm deVere Group said he thought it was “disgusting when white women go out with black guys.” At the time, Okoye was dating Lawrence Okoye, a British Olympic discus thrower who now plays defensive end for the NFL’s San Francisco 49ers. Lawrence and Philippa Okoye have since married.

Before they married, however, another coworker told Okoye not to adopt her husband’s surname, saying that people would “think [she] was black.” Okoye alleges that her boss—Benjamin Alderson—agreed with the coworker, saying a “black-sounding” name would not be good for business, according to the Daily Mail.

Alderson is a senior area manager at deVere, according to Okoye’s lawsuit, filed Monday in federal court in Manhattan. deVere has offices around the world, with three located in the United States—in New York, San Francisco and Miami. According to Okoye’s lawsuit, Alderson said he wanted to pattern his office after offices shown in feature films Wolf of Wall Street and Boiler Room.

Those films depict rampant workplace drug and alcohol abuse as well as office parties with strippers and prostitutes.

In her lawsuit, Okoye alleges that when she began working at deVere, she was the only woman employed in the office, and that Alderson encouraged her to put up with the “banter” and to not be “sensitive.” She alleges that coworkers played a game in which they rated each woman who came to the office based on how “f***able” they were, according to the New York Post.

Alderson suggested that Okoye’s husband—who was working across the country at the time—was cheating on her, asking her to name “how many cheerleaders” her husband had slept with in a given day, “among many other vulgar, racist insults,” according to the Post.

When Okoye complained about the abuse, she said, she was demoted, and Alderson began mocking her Christian faith, calling her a “Bible basher” and singing Christian hymns whenever he walked past her desk.

Ultimately Okoye was transferred to California, where she worked for a spell before being terminated. According to her lawsuit, Okoye was told that she was terminated for performance-related reasons. Okoye alleges, however, that she was terminated because she complained about being sexually harassed by Alderson and others at deVere.

Okoye, who is British, said her work visa has been placed in jeopardy as a result of the termination. She also alleges that she has suffered severe anxiety as a result of the harassment.

Neither Alderson nor deVere had responded to the lawsuit or commented as of Tuesday morning.

If you or someone you know has any questions regarding potential personal injury claims, feel free to contact the experienced personal injury attorneys at Arnold & Smith, PLLC in Charlotte, North Carolina for a free consultation. Call toll free at (955) 370-2828 or click here for additional resources.

 

 

About the Author

ARNOLD & SMITH LAW Matthew Arnold is a Managing Member of Arnold & Smith, PLLC, where he focuses on the areas of family law, divorce, child custody, child support, alimony and equitable distribution.

Mr. Arnold was born and raised in Charlotte, where he graduated from Providence Senior High School. He attended Belmont Abbey College, where he graduated cum laude, before attending law school at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill on a full academic scholarship.

A board-certified specialist in the practice of Family Law, Mr. Arnold is admitted to practice in all state courts in North Carolina, in the United States Federal Court for the Western District of North Carolina, in the North Carolina Court of Appeals and Supreme Court, and in the Fourth Circuit United States Court of Appeals in Richmond, Virginia.

In his free time, Mr. Arnold enjoys golfing and spending time with his wife and three children.

 

 

Sources:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3087697/White-wife-says-harassed-marriage-black-NFL-player.html

https://www.devere-group.com/globalpresence/globalpresence.aspx

http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/nfler-wife-sues-ex-boss-manhattan-firm-harassment-article-1.2227336

 

 

Image Credit

http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Lawrence_Okoye_portrait.jpg

 

 

See Our Related Video from our YouTube channel:

https://www.youtube.com/user/ArnoldSmithPLLC/videos

 

 

See Our Related Blog Posts:

From online Tinder to offline DA’s office: Workplace sexual harassment is real

Company’s treatment of breastfeeding employee a case of what not to do

Published on:

Charlotte Personal Injury Attorney Matthew R. Arnold of Arnold & Smith, PLLC answers the question “Should I trust the insurance adjuster?”

 

Damages are the dirty little secret in personal injury lawsuits—at least the typical insurance adjuster wants you to feel that way. Sure, the adjuster tells you, the driver who hit you was at fault and his insurance policy covered the accident, but what did you really lose?

Wrecked car Charlotte Injury Lawyer North Carolina Car Accident AttorneyYou lost a few hours of work, you hurt your back but the X-rays came back negative. You are as good as new—except you might need a few pain meds and an injection here and there when the pain flares up. Anyone can expect that—a little pain here and there is a part of life, and juries know that. A jury will not give you much for pain.

This is a game that insurance companies play on a massive scale to try to avoid and limit paying out claims. Cullman, Alabama attorney Johnny Berry said insurers have been playing that game for far too long in Cullman, which “has a reputation among insurance companies as a conservative place when it comes to juries ruling in personal injury cases,” according to the Cullman Times.

Berry’s client in a recent case—Joshua Culwell—was driving north on Alabama Highway 69 on February 10, 2012 when his vehicle was struck from behind by a vehicle driven by Thomas Clay Benson, III, according to the Times.

Benson was underinsured, which means the upper limits of his own insurance policy were not sufficient to cover the injuries and damage in the accident with Culwell. In those instances, if a person injured or damaged in an accident has purchased a policy of insurance that includes “uninsured or underinsured coverage,” the injured or damaged driver can file a claim against one’s own insurance policy to cover the difference between the policy limits of the at-fault driver and the amount of damage or injury to the injured driver.

Culwell made a claim against his own insurer, Progressive. At the time of the accident, the thirty-one-year old Culwell was disabled as a result of service in the Iraq War. His work at a local manufacturing firm is limited to eight-hours-per-day as a result of the low-back injury sustained in the February 10, 2012 accident. In addition, Culwell has to take pain medication and undergo four epidural steroid injections per year to treat residual low-back pain, according to the Times.

If Culwell’s case progressed in the manner in which other injury cases progress, the insurer—Progressive—had numerous opportunities to settle the claim. So often, however, insurers choose to pay a defense attorney to roll the dice in court instead of using the same money to pay an injured customer, hoping that in the long run a tough stance against injured parties will result in lower overall claims costs.

In Culwell’s case, that strategy backfired, as a jury in the otherwise “conservative” Cullman awarded Culwell $1 million.

Berry told the Times that he hopes the Culwell case is a game-changer in Cullman that leads to more reasonable pretrial settlements. Attorneys for Progressive, meanwhile, moved to set aside the jury’s verdict and reduce the judgment to the $75,000 limit on Culwell’s uninsured and underinsured coverage.

If you or someone you know has any questions regarding potential personal injury claims, feel free to contact the experienced personal injury attorneys at Arnold & Smith, PLLC in Charlotte, North Carolina for a free consultation. Call toll free at (955) 370-2828 or click here for additional resources.

 

 

About the Author

ARNOLD & SMITH LAW Matthew Arnold is a Managing Member of Arnold & Smith, PLLC, where he focuses on the areas of family law, divorce, child custody, child support, alimony and equitable distribution.

Mr. Arnold was born and raised in Charlotte, where he graduated from Providence Senior High School. He attended Belmont Abbey College, where he graduated cum laude, before attending law school at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill on a full academic scholarship.

A board-certified specialist in the practice of Family Law, Mr. Arnold is admitted to practice in all state courts in North Carolina, in the United States Federal Court for the Western District of North Carolina, in the North Carolina Court of Appeals and Supreme Court, and in the Fourth Circuit United States Court of Appeals in Richmond, Virginia.

In his free time, Mr. Arnold enjoys golfing and spending time with his wife and three children.

 

 

Sources:

http://www.cullmantimes.com/news/cullman-jury-returns-m-verdict-in-personal-injury-case/article_d7a32ada-f607-11e4-99cf-07464883bc48.html

 

 

Image Credit

http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Tan_Accord.JPG

 

 

See Our Related Video from our YouTube channel:

https://www.youtube.com/user/ArnoldSmithPLLC/videos

 

 

See Our Related Blog Posts:

Jury rejects cop’s claim for damages over spilled cup of free coffee

Jury awards $2.6 million to latest victim of “popcorn lung”

Published on:

Charlotte Personal Injury Attorney Matthew R. Arnold of Arnold & Smith, PLLC answers the question “Do I have to sign a release allowing the insurance company to get my medical records?”

 

After Sgt. Matthew Kohr bought a venti-sized cup of his favorite coffee blend—called “Something Special”—from his favorite barista at his preferred Starbucks location in Raleigh, North Carolina, he received something unexpected and—he alleged in a lawsuit against the coffee chain—life changing.

Starbucks Charlotte Injury Lawyer North Carolina Trial AttorneyKohr, a Raleigh police officer, sought $750,000 from Starbucks after he was served coffee in a cup with no sleeve and an improperly secured lid. Kohr said the lid popped off the coffee and the cup collapsed. The hot coffee spilled on Kohr’s lap, burning his inner thigh and the tip of his penis, according to the Los Angeles Times. The burn caused such severe stress that it activated Kohr’s Crohn’s disease, “which required surgery to remove part of his intestine,” according to ABC 11.

Kohr was sitting in the Starbucks store when he sustained the burns. “I wanted to beat my chest and scream,” he testified last week during a jury trial in the Tar Heel State’s capital. The store was filled with customers, however, Kohr, said, so he ran to the bathroom, where his partner poured cold water on his leg. A burn and blisters had already formed.

The third-degree burns left Kohr “clinically depressed, anxious, sleep-deprived and unable to enjoy every day life,” his lawsuit alleged. The injury also affected his relationship with his wife to the point that she lost consortium—or her legal right to the “company, affection and assistance” of her spouse.

Starbucks’ lawyer blamed Sgt. Kohr for spilling the coffee. “How does someone who knows their coffee is hot, who has had fifty cups of free coffee in the last two months, how does that person spill their coffee?” the lawyer asked the jury. She also pointed out that Kohr drove from the Starbucks to a police lot, then drove his truck home, where his wife photographed his injury. Significantly, the lawyer said, Kohr waited over two hours before seeking medical attention.

Starbucks also pointed out that while it serves more than four billion cups of coffee per year, less than sixty damages claims have been filed against the company. The company argued that Kohr’s depression was caused by steroids he took to treat his Crohn’s disease, and that his Crohn’s disease was not related to the coffee spill.

Following a week of testimony, a jury deliberated for approximately four hours, returning with a ten-to-two verdict in favor of Starbucks. The verdict means that Kohr gets nothing.

Kohr’s lawsuit sparked comparison to the famous 1994 Liebeck v. McDonald’s, a case in which a New Mexico jury awarded a 79-year-old customer $2.86 million after spilling hot coffee in her lap. That case became “the poster child of excessive lawsuits,” according to the Raleigh News & Observer.

If you or someone you know has any questions regarding potential personal injury claims, feel free to contact the experienced personal injury attorneys at Arnold & Smith, PLLC in Charlotte, North Carolina for a free consultation. Call toll free at (955) 370-2828 or click here for additional resources.

 

 

About the Author

ARNOLD & SMITH LAW Matthew Arnold is a Managing Member of Arnold & Smith, PLLC, where he focuses on the areas of family law, divorce, child custody, child support, alimony and equitable distribution.

Mr. Arnold was born and raised in Charlotte, where he graduated from Providence Senior High School. He attended Belmont Abbey College, where he graduated cum laude, before attending law school at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill on a full academic scholarship.

A board-certified specialist in the practice of Family Law, Mr. Arnold is admitted to practice in all state courts in North Carolina, in the United States Federal Court for the Western District of North Carolina, in the North Carolina Court of Appeals and Supreme Court, and in the Fourth Circuit United States Court of Appeals in Richmond, Virginia.

In his free time, Mr. Arnold enjoys golfing and spending time with his wife and three children.

 

 

Sources:

http://abc11.com/news/starbucks-not-liable-for-raleigh-police-officers-burns/713613/

http://www.latimes.com/nation/la-na-starbucks-lawsuit-20150512-story.html

http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/consortium

http://www.newsobserver.com/news/local/counties/wake-county/article20665194.html

 

 

Image Credit

“Starbucks in WashingtonDC”. Licensed under CC BY 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons – http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Starbucks_in_WashingtonDC.jpg#/media/File:Starbucks_in_WashingtonDC.jpg

 

 

See Our Related Video from our YouTube channel:

https://www.youtube.com/user/ArnoldSmithPLLC/videos

 

 

See Our Related Blog Posts:

Grocery chain responsible for boy’s food-allergy death, lawsuit claims

North Carolina Man Charged After Crash Kills Off Duty Officer

Published on:

Charlotte Personal Injury Attorney Matthew R. Arnold of Arnold & Smith, PLLC answers the question “Should I trust the insurance adjuster?”

 

Legislation culled from so-called “bill-mill” American Legislative Exchange Council’s library of plaintiff-unfriendly proposals has become the law of the land in the State of Arizona, and personal injury attorneys are crying foul. They say the bill Gov. Doug Ducey signed into law last Thursday will prevent victims of asbestos exposure from recovering the damages they are owed.

Hazmat Suit Charlotte Injury Lawyer Mecklenburg Accident AttorneyGov. Ducey said that while victims are entitled to compensation, the bill would “increase transparency and fairness in asbestos litigation.” The bill, sponsored by Rep. Sonny Borrelli, R-Lake Havasu City, will require claimants in asbestos-exposure lawsuits to “provide a sworn statement of every asbestos-related claim they’ve made or plan to make.” This will discourage or prevent what Gov. Ducey called “double recoveries.”

Asbestos exposure can cause a deadly lung disease called mesothelioma. Many individuals who have contracted mesothelioma have attributed the disease to workplace exposure to asbestos. The naturally occurring mineral is used principally for building and electrical insulation.

Companies that produce asbestos-related products have faced so many law suits in the past two decades that they have set up asbestos-injury trusts to compensate those who contract mesothelioma as a result of workplace-asbestos exposure. Some companies have alleged that claimants—often with the assistance of crooked personal-injury attorneys—have sued for damages for asbestos exposure in one or more courts of law, received a settlement or verdict in their favor, and then turned around and made a claim for compensation from one or more of the asbestos-injury trusts, or vice versa.

That’s a practice Gov. Ducey wants to end in Arizona. The Arizona Trial Lawyers Association says, however, that the bill he signed into law will make claims more expensive and will delay justice for victims of asbestos exposure. Janice Goldstein, executive director of the association, told the Claims Journal that the goal of the bill is to “make sure no victim survives his or her asbestosis or mesothelioma long enough to testify in court.”

The Claims Journal noted that the “conservative pro-business group known as the American Legislative Exchange Council has been pushing similar legislation in states around the country.” That group generates model bills that editors at Mesothelioma.com say are beneficial to corporate donors, who pay annual dues of between $7,000 and $25,000.

Senator Thom Tills, R-North Carolina, was the Council’s “Lawmaker of the Year” in 2011. That same year, the North Carolina legislature passed a law capping noneconomic damages in medical malpractice cases. Capping noneconomic damages in certain tort cases has been one of the Council’s principal initiatives in recent years, as detailed in its publication, The State Legislator’s Guide: Tort Reform Boot Camp. Jason Saine, R-Lincoln, a member of the North Carolina House of Representatives, was named the Council’s “Lawmaker of the Year” last year.

If you or someone you know has any questions regarding potential personal injury claims, feel free to contact the experienced personal injury attorneys at Arnold & Smith, PLLC in Charlotte, North Carolina for a free consultation. Call toll free at (955) 370-2828 or click here for additional resources.

 

 

About the Author

ARNOLD & SMITH LAWMatthew Arnold is a Managing Member of Arnold & Smith, PLLC, where he focuses on the areas of family law, divorce, child custody, child support, alimony and equitable distribution.

Mr. Arnold was born and raised in Charlotte, where he graduated from Providence Senior High School. He attended Belmont Abbey College, where he graduated cum laude, before attending law school at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill on a full academic scholarship.

A board-certified specialist in the practice of Family Law, Mr. Arnold is admitted to practice in all state courts in North Carolina, in the United States Federal Court for the Western District of North Carolina, in the North Carolina Court of Appeals and Supreme Court, and in the Fourth Circuit United States Court of Appeals in Richmond, Virginia.

In his free time, Mr. Arnold enjoys golfing and spending time with his wife and three children.

 

 

Sources:

http://www.claimsjournal.com/news/west/2015/04/13/262768.htm

http://www.alec.org/initiatives/federal-relations/senate/

http://www.mesothelioma.com/blog/authors/staff/beware-of-alec.htm

http://www.wral.com/nc-lawmaker-wins-top-alec-award-/13858212/

http://www.starnewsonline.com/article/20110803/articles/110809870

http://www.alec.org/wp-content/uploads/TortReformBootCampGuideFinal.pdf

 

 

Image Credit

“DASA 01″ by Krd – Own work. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons – http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:DASA_01.jpg#/media/File:DASA_01.jpg

 

 

See Our Related Video from our YouTube channel:

https://www.youtube.com/user/ArnoldSmithPLLC/videos

 

 

See Our Related Blog Posts:

State senator uses nonprofit’s complaint about legal bills to try to impose cap on damages

Jury awards $2.6 million to latest victim of “popcorn lung”

Published on:

Charlotte Personal Injury Attorney Matthew R. Arnold of Arnold & Smith, PLLC answers the question ” If an incident report was filled out, do I have a right to receive a copy?”

 

Gamblers and boxing fans are crying foul after what has been billed as boxing’s richest bout, held last weekend in Las Vegas, Nevada. Undefeated boxing champion Floyd Mayweather, Jr. defeated Manny Pacquiao in a twelve-round decision.

Tom Brady Charlotte Injury Lawyer North Carolina Civil AttorneyAfter the fight, fans learned that Pacquiao revealed—just prior to the bout—that he had suffered a shoulder injury. According to Time, Pacquiao is expected to undergo surgery to repair a torn rotator cuff, which is likely to keep him out of the boxing ring for as long as a year.

The revelations about Pacquiao’s injury caused Francisco Aguilar, the chairman of the Nevada Athletic Commission, to question why Pacquiao failed to publically disclose the injury before the match. Pacquiao’s adviser, Michael Koncz, took the blame for checking “no” on a pre-bout form that asked whether the fighter was injured, calling it “an inadvertent mistake.”

That explanation did not suit plaintiffs Staphane Vanel and Kami Rahbaran. They sued Pacquiao, Top Rank, Inc., Koncz, promoter Robert Arum and a number of other defendants in federal court on Monday, claiming they should be reimbursed for sums they paid either for tickets or for pay-per-view packages used to view the bout. The suit seeks class-action status on behalf of all individuals who purchased tickets or pay-per-view packages or who placed wagers on the bout, claiming that Pacquiao’s injury was fraudulently concealed.

If Vanel’s and Rahbaran’s lawsuit holds up, fans of the National Football League’s New England Patriots and quarterback Tom Brady may be in for a rocky summer. After complaints registered by the Indianapolis Colts following their loss to the Patriots in last season’s American Football Conference Championship game, league officials launched an investigation into whether game footballs were intentionally deflated.

In the media whirlwind that followed the Colts’ allegation, audio surfaced from a 2011 interview in which Brady said he liked throwing deflated balls. Media outlets called the incident “deflategate” after the famous scandal involving Washington D.C.’s Watergate office complex that torpedoed Richard Nixon’s presidency in the mid-1970s.

After a nearly four-month investigation, league officials concluded that at least two Patriots equipment managers were involved in deflating footballs before the game against the Colts. Text messages exchanged between the equipment managers appeared to show that Brady was aware of efforts to deflate balls.

If Brady and at least two members of the Patriots staff were involved in a conspiracy to deflate footballs for the purpose of gaining a competitive advantage, then it follows—based on the suit against Pacquiao, et al.—that football fans and gamblers were swindled not only by the delating action but also by the fraudulent concealment of the deflating of balls. They too might argue that they are entitled to reimbursement for sums expended on a game whose outcome was artificially affected by the actions of Brady and others in the Patriots organization.

If you or someone you know has any questions regarding potential personal injury claims, feel free to contact the experienced personal injury attorneys at Arnold & Smith, PLLC in Charlotte, North Carolina for a free consultation. Call toll free at (955) 370-2828 or click here for additional resources.

 

 

About the Author

ARNOLD & SMITH LAW Matthew Arnold is a Managing Member of Arnold & Smith, PLLC, where he focuses on the areas of family law, divorce, child custody, child support, alimony and equitable distribution.

Mr. Arnold was born and raised in Charlotte, where he graduated from Providence Senior High School. He attended Belmont Abbey College, where he graduated cum laude, before attending law school at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill on a full academic scholarship.

A board-certified specialist in the practice of Family Law, Mr. Arnold is admitted to practice in all state courts in North Carolina, in the United States Federal Court for the Western District of North Carolina, in the North Carolina Court of Appeals and Supreme Court, and in the Fourth Circuit United States Court of Appeals in Richmond, Virginia.

In his free time, Mr. Arnold enjoys golfing and spending time with his wife and three children.

 

 

Sources:

http://time.com/3848142/manny-pacquiao-floyd-mayweather-lawsuit-shoulder-injury/

http://www3.8newsnow.com/2015/uploads/server/php/files/manny.pdf

http://www.boston.com/sports/football/patriots/2015/05/06/read-the-texts-that-suggest-tom-brady-knew-about-deflategate/RvOL44sKCsjUnG6IlSrLGJ/story.html

http://www.cbssports.com/nfl/eye-on-football/24980832/tom-brady-in-2011-i-like-deflated-footballs

 

 

Image Credit

“Tom Brady 2014″ by Jeffrey Beall – Flickr. Licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons – http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Tom_Brady_2014.jpg#/media/File:Tom_Brady_2014.jpg

 

 

See Our Related Video from our YouTube channel:

https://www.youtube.com/user/ArnoldSmithPLLC/videos

 

 

See Our Related Blog Posts:

Couple not happy their engagement photo was used for N.F.L. star’s erotica novel

Pop Warner youth-football-concussion law suit first of many, lawyer says

Published on:

Charlotte Personal Injury Attorney Matthew R. Arnold of Arnold & Smith, PLLC answers the question “What exactly is a wrongful death claim?”

 

Police are looking for someone who decapitated a thirteen-year-old deaf-and-dumb service dog.

Injured dog Charlotte Injury Attorney Mecklenburg Accident LawyerShirley and Dennis Morrow—the dog’s owners—said a family friend who was helping them search for the dog located the animal’s body—sans its head—last Thursday. The Morrows allege that someone entered their fenced-in yard in Kings Mountain, North Carolina and stole an ax, a sledgehammer, a shovel and a propane tank.

Sadly, they say, whoever stole the items likely stole the head off their beloved pooch—named Libby. Investigators say the dog’s head has not yet been found. Cleveland County Animal Control officers found the animal’s collar while searching the Morrows’ yard on Friday.

The Tri-County Animal Shelter is offering a $5,000 reward for information that leads to the arrest of the person responsible for the killing. Meanwhile, officials with the Kings Mountain Police Department say they have few leads as to the identity of the killer. The Morrows say they are keeping a watchful eye on their other dogs.

“You don’t think something like [this] would happen in a small town,” Dennis Morrow told the Charlotte Observer. The Morrows live in a residential area of Kings Mountain not far from the city’s downtown area. Kings Mountain is a small suburb of nearby Charlotte, North Carolina.

The perpetrator—if found—faces charges of burglary, larceny and animal cruelty. Prosecutors would likely charge the perpetrator with Felonious Cruelty to an Animal—nicknamed “Susie’s Law”—a relatively new law that strengthened criminal penalties for individuals who inflict particularly heinous acts of cruelty upon animals.

Civil actions brought by aggrieved pet owners against those who kill their pets by negligent or intentional conduct are available in North Carolina. Some states—California and Illinois—allow aggrieved pet owners to recover damages for the “peculiar value” of a lost pet, comparing pets to “other unique and irreplaceable items.” Courts in California, Hawaii, Florida, New York and Oregon have upheld damages awarded for emotional distress inflicted upon a pet owner as a result of a pet’s killing.

Unfortunately, courts in North Carolina have not recognized the “unique and irreplaceable” value of pets as justifying an award of damages beyond their market value. The market value of a dog is, in most cases, quite modest—at most a few hundred dollars. North Carolina courts have also not, to date, recognized an emotional distress claim arising from the killing of a pet, although some legal scholars believe a 1913 case—Beasley v. Byrum—authorizes emotional-distress damages in intentional-pet-killing cases.

Since the perpetrator in the Morrow case, by all accounts, intended to kill “Libby,” the Morrows could seek punitive damages in a suit against the perpetrator. Punitive damages can be awarded in cases in which a perpetrator evinces “willful, wanton or malicious” conduct. A judge or jury could set a punitive damages amount sufficient, in the view of the judge or jury, to punish the perpetrator for his or her wrongdoing.

If you or someone you know has any questions regarding potential personal injury claims, feel free to contact the experienced personal injury attorneys at Arnold & Smith, PLLC in Charlotte, North Carolina for a free consultation. Call toll free at (955) 370-2828 or click here for additional resources.

 

 

About the Author

ARNOLD & SMITH LAWMatthew Arnold is a Managing Member of Arnold & Smith, PLLC, where he focuses on the areas of family law, divorce, child custody, child support, alimony and equitable distribution.

Mr. Arnold was born and raised in Charlotte, where he graduated from Providence Senior High School. He attended Belmont Abbey College, where he graduated cum laude, before attending law school at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill on a full academic scholarship.

A board-certified specialist in the practice of Family Law, Mr. Arnold is admitted to practice in all state courts in North Carolina, in the United States Federal Court for the Western District of North Carolina, in the North Carolina Court of Appeals and Supreme Court, and in the Fourth Circuit United States Court of Appeals in Richmond, Virginia.

In his free time, Mr. Arnold enjoys golfing and spending time with his wife and three children.

 

 

Sources:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3067342/Family-finds-blind-13-year-old-rescue-dog-decapitated-yard.html

http://www.charlotteobserver.com/news/local/community/news-alliance/wbtv-news/article20165181.html

https://www.google.com/maps/place/S+Gaston+St,+Kings+Mountain,+NC+28086/@35.2433862,-81.3303487,15z/data=!4m2!3m1!1s0x8856e7e1e76252f3:0x5530caec347ce9de

http://www.wcnc.com/story/news/crime/2015/01/26/police-nc-man-shot-killed-dog-that-wouldnt-stop-barking/22367003/

http://www.nolo.com/legal-encyclopedia/free-books/dog-book/chapter9-6.html

http://scholarship.law.duke.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=2368&context=faculty_scholarship

https://casetext.com/case/beasley-v-byrum

 

 

Image Credit

http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Microphthalmia_in_half_blind_dog.jpg

 

 

See Our Related Video from our YouTube channel:

https://www.youtube.com/user/ArnoldSmithPLLC/videos

 

 

See Our Related Blog Posts:

Pet killings leave pet owners with a lot of grief, little to recover in damages

“Mom of the year” settles lawsuit with neighbor she impersonated for rape solicitation

Published on:

Charlotte Personal Injury Attorney Matthew R. Arnold of Arnold & Smith, PLLC answers the question “What can you sue for in a personal injury case?”

 

Physicians, politicians and law-enforcement officials across the United States are lining up to issue calls to ban Palcohol, a powdered version of vodka, rum and three cocktails.

Red powder Charlotte Injury Lawyer North Carolina Wrongful Death AttorneyThe company that makes Palcohol—Lipsmark—says it designed the powdered alcohol product to make it easier for people on the go to “enjoy a refreshing adult beverage” without having to lug around heavy bottles of beer, liquor or wine.

The Baltimore Sun asked its readers to imagine children snorting the powder, eating it like Pixy Stix, adding it to their food, or sneaking it into schools or stadiums. The Sun called the product “essentially alcoholic Kool-Aid.”

The Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau approved the product for sale in the United States, but even before the product’s approval by federal bureaucrats, state officials made a rush to ban the product in their jurisdictions. According to the Sun, Alaska, Louisiana, South Carolina, Vermont and Virginia all banned Palcohol before its approval, “and at least 23 other states are considering legislative bans.”

Politicians in Michigan recently unveiled a bill that would ban the sale and possession of powdered alcohol in Michigan. That bill enjoys bipartisan support. Allegan County Sheriff Blaine Koops, who supports a ban, said “This is probably the most reckless and dangerous product that I’ve seen introduced in my tenure as a public safety officer. There’s no redeeming quality for this product.”

Lipsmark has dismissed those claims, responding that liquid alcohol is “easier to conceal, easier” to use to spike drinks, easier to use to binge drink and less expensive. Furthermore, given the relative alcohol content in Palcohol, a binge-drinker would find liquid alcohol to be a much more economical choice—and one that packs a more powerful punch.

As for snorting Palcohol, kids as well as adults could snort just about anything. The real question is, why would someone want to snort Palcohol? To get drunk, no doubt, but that game has been tested, and snorting the product appears to lead to nothing more (or less) than a bloody nose and a headache.

Nevertheless, writing in the Sun, Drs. Richard Bruno and Leana S. Wen acknowledge some criticism of a ban on powdered alcohol “as limiting personal choice,” but they argue that since governments have already made a track record of banning “alcoholic energy drinks and candy-flavored cigarettes,” a Palcohol ban should be prescribed “in every state in order to ensure that our children are not recklessly exposed to dangerous products.”

The head of North Carolina’s Alcoholic Beverage Control Commission has asked lawmakers to ban Palcohol in the Tar Heel State, citing—of course—the children, etc. Mark Phillips, president of the Arizona-based Lipsmark, told WRAL that “no one wants a nanny state telling its citizens what they can and cannot drink.”

Writing in the Sun last month, Phillips responded to criticism of his company’s product by alleging that the push to ban Palcohol is more “about the liquor companies protecting their market share and profits” than about public-safety concerns.

If you or someone you know has any questions regarding potential personal injury claims, feel free to contact the experienced personal injury attorneys at Arnold & Smith, PLLC in Charlotte, North Carolina for a free consultation. Call toll free at (955) 370-2828 or click here for additional resources.

 

 

About the Author

ARNOLD & SMITH LAW Matthew Arnold is a Managing Member of Arnold & Smith, PLLC, where he focuses on the areas of family law, divorce, child custody, child support, alimony and equitable distribution.

Mr. Arnold was born and raised in Charlotte, where he graduated from Providence Senior High School. He attended Belmont Abbey College, where he graduated cum laude, before attending law school at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill on a full academic scholarship.

A board-certified specialist in the practice of Family Law, Mr. Arnold is admitted to practice in all state courts in North Carolina, in the United States Federal Court for the Western District of North Carolina, in the North Carolina Court of Appeals and Supreme Court, and in the Fourth Circuit United States Court of Appeals in Richmond, Virginia.

In his free time, Mr. Arnold enjoys golfing and spending time with his wife and three children.

 

 

Sources:

http://farmingtonhills.legalexaminer.com/defective-dangerous-products/a-stirring-controversy/

http://www.mlive.com/lansing-news/index.ssf/2015/04/doctors_sheriffs_unite_against.html

http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/opinion/oped/bs-ed-palcohol-con-20150408-story.html

http://www.palcohol.com/f.a.q..html

http://www.thewire.com/business/2014/05/of-course-someone-already-tried-to-snort-powdered-alcohol/371400/

http://www.wral.com/nc-officials-moving-to-ban-powdered-alcohol/14568068/

http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/opinion/oped/bs-ed-palcohol-pro-20150408-story.html

 

 

Image Credit

“20100901-06a PR 207″ by Hard core rave man – Own work. Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons – http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:20100901-06a_PR_207.JPG#/media/File:20100901-06a_PR_207.JPG

 

 

See Our Related Video from our YouTube channel:

https://www.youtube.com/user/ArnoldSmithPLLC/videos

 

 

See Our Related Blog Posts:

Neighbors of the nude of Cardinal Glen could sue to abate his “privates” nuisance

Concussion injuries spark concerns well beyond the NFL playing field

Published on:

Matthew R. Arnold of Arnold & Smith, PLLC answers the question ” I have been injured on another person’s property. What should I do now?”

 

Legal bills have made the business of “Punkin Chunkin” uncertain, but Punkin Chunkin president Ricky Nietubicz said he is committed to holding the annual pumpkin-flinging event at Dover Motorsports, Inc. in the State of Delaware’s capital.

Pumpkin Flying Charlotte Injury Law Firm Mecklenburg Wrongful Death AttorneysState lawmakers in the Diamond State are worried a 2013 lawsuit brought against Punkin Chunkin and Wheatley Farms—the pumpkin-chucking fest’s old venue—will force chucking organizers across state lines.

The annual chucking—three-decades old—is just what the name portends. Participants chuck pumpkins as far as they can. Wolfman Joe Thomas’s Punkin Chunkin winning shot last year traveled more than 3,000 feet.

After pumpkins are chucked by participants, spotters ride all-terrain vehicles into the fields where the pumpkins land to measure the distance of the chucks. Daniel Fair worked as a spotter at the old Punkin Chunkin venue at Wheatley Farms in Delaware.

As Fair was riding out to measure a chuck, the all-terrain vehicle he was riding hit a hole in the ground, causing a crash that he alleged caused injuries to his spinal cord that make it difficult for him to walk and caused him to lose his job as a tug-boat worker, according to DelawareOnline.com.

Fair sued Punkin Chunkin and Wheatley Farms in October 2013, seeking at least $4.5 million in damages. Punkin Chunkin and Wheatley Farms denied that they were liable for Fair’s injuries.

Punkin Chunkin’s president and others complained publically about the mounting legal bills in Fair’s suit. State Sen. Brian Pettyjohn, R-Georgetown, seized on Punkin Chunkin’s complaints about the legal bills and filed in the state legislature what he dubbed the “Punkin Chunkin bill.”

The bill would cap pain-and-suffering damages at $1 million in personal injury lawsuits that are brought against nonprofit entities that sponsor annual special events. The legislation would have no effect on Fair’s suit, but Sen. Pettyjohn said he wanted to protect nonprofits like Punkin Chunkin from future claims brought by injured parties.

The bill was jettisoned after Michael Malkiewicz, a Dover lawyer and a member of the legislative committee of the Delaware Trial Lawyers Association, testified before the state’s Senate Executive Committee. Malkiewicz defended uncapped damages claims in the appropriate cases, and said “fair” and “conservative” Delaware juries are capable of determining appropriate damage awards.

Sen. Pettyjohn said the Trial Lawyers Association was a powerful lobbying group and had lobbied hard to push back against the proposed legislation. The jettisoning of the bill came along party lines, with four Democrats in the Senate Executive Committee voting to table the measure and two Republicans voting in the measure’s favor.

If you or someone you know has any questions regarding potential personal injury claims, feel free to contact the experienced personal injury attorneys at Arnold & Smith, PLLC in Charlotte, North Carolina for a free consultation. Call toll free at (955) 370-2828 or click here for additional resources.

 

 

About the Author

ARNOLD & SMITH LAWMatthew Arnold is a Managing Member of Arnold & Smith, PLLC, where he focuses on the areas of family law, divorce, child custody, child support, alimony and equitable distribution.

Mr. Arnold was born and raised in Charlotte, where he graduated from Providence Senior High School. He attended Belmont Abbey College, where he graduated cum laude, before attending law school at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill on a full academic scholarship.

A board-certified specialist in the practice of Family Law, Mr. Arnold is admitted to practice in all state courts in North Carolina, in the United States Federal Court for the Western District of North Carolina, in the North Carolina Court of Appeals and Supreme Court, and in the Fourth Circuit United States Court of Appeals in Richmond, Virginia.

In his free time, Mr. Arnold enjoys golfing and spending time with his wife and three children.

 

 

Sources:

http://www.delawareonline.com/story/firststatepolitics/2015/04/01/punkin-chunkin-legislation-defeated/70793432/

http://www.statesymbolsusa.org/symbol-official-item/delaware/state-nickname/first-state

http://punkinchunkin.com/

http://delaware.newszap.com/southerndelaware/128226-104/sen-pettyjohn-seeks-co-sponsors-for-punkin-chunkin-bill

 

 

Image Credit

“Pumpkin chucked from trebuchet in ohio” by Room 237 – Own work. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons – http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Pumpkin_chucked_from_trebuchet_in_ohio.jpg#/media/File:Pumpkin_chucked_from_trebuchet_in_ohio.jpg

 

 

See Our Related Video from our YouTube channel:

https://www.youtube.com/user/ArnoldSmithPLLC/videos

 

 

See Our Related Blog Posts:

Public policy ends suit brought by man against skydive-sponsoring Smiling Moose owner

Even personal-injury lawyers are against frivolous lawsuits

Published on:

Charlotte Personal Injury Attorney Legal Briefs: What can you sue for in a personal injury case?

 

If you cannot figure out what a “Gronking” is, you can read between the lines or you can order a copy of Lacey Noonan’s “risqué erotic e-book” A Gronking to Remember and find out for yourself. The e-book is selling for about the same price as a cup of black coffee from Starbucks.

Rob Gronkowski Mecklenburg Injury Lawyer North Carolina Civil AttorneyThe book bills itself as the first “in the Rob Gronkowski Erotica Series.”

Rob Gronkowski, if you do not know, is a 25-year-old wide receiver for the National Football League’s New England Patriots. The six-and-a-half-feet-tall, 265-pound star caught six passes in the Patriots’ Super Bowl win last season, including 22-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Tom Brady.

Since the close of the football season, Gronkowski has appeared on numerous television shows and is pushing a line of products, including the erotica series featuring his likeness. He appears to be spending his time in a more wholesome manner than former teammate Aaron Hernandez. Gronkowski and Hernandez were both drafted as wide receivers by the Patriots in 2010.

In 2012, Hernandez told ESPN that he and Gronkowski had a lot in common. “We found out we both like to have fun and were a little bit immature,” Hernandez told the sports-news network. Six months later, prosecutors allege, Hernandez murdered two men in a drive-by shooting outside a Boston nightclub. The ex-player was convicted of a separate 2013 murder two weeks ago.

Gronkowski’s off-the-field actions appear to be far more lighthearted. The star has burnished his image as a free-wheeling party animal and goofball, appearing in stints on shows like Jimmie Kimmel Live and SportsNation… and appearing in erotica.

A Gronking to Remember tells the story of “the normally sheepish Leigh,” who wanders into the television room one afternoon and finds her husband “Dan” and friends watching football. Leigh sees Gronkowski score a touchdown and then perform his patented “Gronk Spike,” described as a “notorious monster smashing” of the football.

Witnessing the “Gronk Spike,” of course, “jettisoned jiggling ribbons of electric jelly through” Leigh’s body, and melted her “knees like two pads of margarine.” The book goes on to chronicle Leigh’s lustful dreams about Gronkowski and, well… Gronking.

Leigh is not a real person, but the cover of A Gronking to Remember features a real woman and her husband. The pair, a couple from Miami County, Ohio, allege that their engagement photo was used—without their permission—as the cover art for A Gronking to Remember.

That led to untold amounts of ridicule and shame from people who recognized them, they allege in a lawsuit pending in federal court against the book’s author and companies that have sold and distributed the book online.

While the couple acknowledge that they may have uploaded the photo online, they allege that it “was appropriated by the [A Gronking to Remember] Defendants for commercial gain without the permission of the Plaintiffs.”

At least one online retailer, Amazon.com, has argued that since the book was technically self-published, it had no control over the content and cannot be held liable for the actions of independent third parties. It has also argued that the couple assumed the risk of others using their photo by sharing it online.

If you or someone you know has any questions regarding potential personal injury claims, feel free to contact the experienced personal injury attorneys at Arnold & Smith, PLLC in Charlotte, North Carolina for a free consultation. Call toll free at (955) 370-2828 or click here for additional resources.

 

 

About the Author

ARNOLD & SMITH LAW Matthew Arnold is a Managing Member of Arnold & Smith, PLLC, where he focuses on the areas of family law, divorce, child custody, child support, alimony and equitable distribution.

Mr. Arnold was born and raised in Charlotte, where he graduated from Providence Senior High School. He attended Belmont Abbey College, where he graduated cum laude, before attending law school at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill on a full academic scholarship.

A board-certified specialist in the practice of Family Law, Mr. Arnold is admitted to practice in all state courts in North Carolina, in the United States Federal Court for the Western District of North Carolina, in the North Carolina Court of Appeals and Supreme Court, and in the Fourth Circuit United States Court of Appeals in Richmond, Virginia.

In his free time, Mr. Arnold enjoys golfing and spending time with his wife and three children.

 

 

Sources:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3059868/Couple-sues-engagement-photo-used-cover-softcore-porn-book-Gronking-Remember-without-permission.html

http://espn.go.com/nfl/boxscore?gameId=400749027

http://espn.go.com/boston/nfl/story/_/id/7476288/rob-gronkowski-aaron-hernandez-two-kind

http://www.foxsports.com/nfl/story/aaron-hernandez-murder-case-timeline-051414

http://www.amazon.com/Gronking-Remember-Gronkowski-Erotica-Series-ebook/dp/B00RN7TNHE

http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/thr-esq/a-gronking-remember-becomes-memorable-791678

 

 

Image Credit

http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Rob_Gronkowski_2014.jpg

 

 

See Our Related Video from our YouTube channel:

https://www.youtube.com/user/ArnoldSmithPLLC/videos

 

 

See Our Related Blog Posts:

Woman sues top NFL prospect for alleged rape

Student sues university after accuser allowed to turn rape accusation into senior project

Published on:

Legal Briefs: Do I have to sign a release allowing the insurance company to get my medical records?

A man exposed to a substance used in food flavorings to mimic the taste of butter has been awarded $2.6 million by an Orange County, California jury.

Food Processing Charlotte Injury Lawyer Mecklenburg Civil AttorneyThe man, Tanu Vatuvei, contracted bronchiolitis obliterans after exposure to diacetyl, a substance that is a natural byproduct of the fermentation process but which can also be chemically synthesized by manufacturers. Diacetyl has long been used by food-processors to mimic the taste and texture of butter, notably in microwaveable popcorn and in other snack foods.

Writing for the Legal Examiner, Jacob Plattenberger explains that food-processing chemicals like diacetyl can be volatile. When they are heated and evaporate, they can easily be inhaled. Powdered forms of the chemicals can also be inhaled through dust created during the food-production process.

Plattenberger cites a study from the Centers for Disease Control showing that workers in a plant in the Netherlands who helped manufacture diacetyl suffered from the same types of lung ailments as workers in plants that produce microwaveable popcorn. Plattenberger expects to see more workplace-diacetyl exposure cases.

Vatuvei worked for nearly ten years at Mission Flavors & Fragrances, Inc., a manufacturing plant outside Los Angeles, California. He alleged that exposure to diacetyl left him with just forty-percent lung capacity. Doctors have said he will eventually need a lung transplant.

While a California jury was swayed by Vatuvei’s diacetyl-exposure claim—awarding him $2.6 million in damages—diacetyl exposure claims outside of the workplace have not met with as much success.

In 2011, David and Barbara Stults brought suit against New York-based International Flavors and Fragrances, Inc. alleging that deeply inhaling the vapors from freshly popped microwaveable popcorn caused David Stults to develop bronchiolitis obliterans and rheumatoid arthritis.

In 2014, a federal jury cleared International Flavors of any wrongdoing. The Stults’s appeal of that decision is pending.

Wayne and Mary Watson won in 2012 the only known successful “popcorn lung” lawsuit brought by consumers against food makers. Their $7.2-million jury award was later reduced on appeal, and they ultimately settled with Illinois-based Gilster-Mary Lee Corp. while further appeals were pending.

Workers in the food-production industry have litigated successful “popcorn lung” claims against food manufacturers for over a decade. In 2004, a jury awarded a 32-year-old worker from a Missouri-based Gilster-Mary Lee plant $20 million after he developed lung ailments as a result of workplace diacetyl exposure.

If you or someone you know has been injured as a result of someone’s negligent or intentional conduct, it is essential that you contact one of the experienced personal-injury attorneys at Arnold & Smith, PLLC in Charlotte, North Carolina today. If you or someone you know has any questions regarding potential personal injury claims, feel free to contact the experienced personal injury attorneys at Arnold & Smith, PLLC in Charlotte, North Carolina for a free consultation. Call toll free at (955) 370-2828 or click here for additional resources.

 

 

About the Author                                                                 

ARNOLD & SMITH LAWMatthew Arnold is a Managing Member of Arnold & Smith, PLLC, where he focuses on the areas of family law, divorce, child custody, child support, alimony and equitable distribution.

Mr. Arnold was born and raised in Charlotte, where he graduated from Providence Senior High School. He attended Belmont Abbey College, where he graduated cum laude, before attending law school at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill on a full academic scholarship.

As a board-certified Family Law Specialist, Mr. Arnold’s professional practice focuses on Family Law actions such as divorce and child custody, although his practice encompasses a wide range of civil practice areas.

Mr. Arnold is a member of the North Carolina State and Mecklenburg County Bars, and is admitted to practice in all state courts in North Carolina, in Federal District Court for the Western District of North Carolina, and in the Fourth Circuit United States Court of Appeals in Richmond, Virginia.

In his free time, Mr. Arnold enjoys golfing and spending time with his wife and three children.

 

 

Sources:

http://chicago-land.legalexaminer.com/defective-dangerous-products/2-6-million-verdict-awarded-in-diacetyl-exposure-case/

http://www.law360.com/articles/638574/flavor-maker-denies-popcorn-lung-claims-in-8th-circ

http://www.law360.com/articles/569282/jury-clears-butter-flavor-co-in-popcorn-lung-trial

http://www.cbsnews.com/news/colorado-man-wayne-watson-wins-7-million-in-popcorn-lung-lawsuit/

 

 

Image Credit

http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Grandi_fish_processing_conveyor_belt3_2011.jpg

 

 

See Our Related Video from our YouTube channel:

https://www.youtube.com/user/ArnoldSmithPLLC/videos

 

 

See Our Related Blog Posts:

Causation, foreseeability vexing issues for lawyers, litigants

Chicken Plants In North Carolina Pose Danger To Workers :: Personal Injury Law Firm in Charlotte, NC