Articles Posted in Personal Injury

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Charlotte Personal Injury Attorney Matthew R. Arnold of Arnold & Smith, PLLC answers the question “Can I wait a few months to pursue a personal injury claim?”

 

A 77-year-old Irish golfer who sued Eddie Murphy after a golf club told him he had a 13 handicap watched Ireland’s High and Supreme Courts sink his lawsuit last week.

Golf Putt Charlotte Mecklenburg Injury Lawyer North Carolina Accident AttorneyThe golfer, a retired insurance official from Dublin named Thomas Talbot, sued the Golfing Union of Ireland, the Hermitage Golf Club and Hermitage Officer Eddie Murphy in 2004 after the golf club sent Talbot a certificate showing he had a 13 handicap and was entitled to “General Play (Handicap Building).”

Talbot felt his handicap was lower. By assigning him a 13 handicap, he believed, the golf club accused him of cheating.

Irish Supreme Court Justice Daniel Herbert rejected Talbot’s claim. While the justice conceded that the words “Handicap Building” could have been interpreted by fellow golfers to mean that Talbot was inflating his handicap, “the words were only published in a limited form to a computer programmer who designed software for the club, including for handicap records.” The limited, intra-club publication of the words meant that it “enjoyed qualified privilege from being sued,” Justice Herbert said.

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Charlotte Personal Injury Attorney Matthew R. Arnold of Arnold & Smith, PLLC answers the question “Can I wait a few months to pursue a personal injury claim?”

 

Red Bull does not really give you wings, but since you might have thought it did, the company that makes the popular energy drink has agreed to pay $13 million to customers in the United States.

Red Bull Delivery Truck Charlotte Injury Lawyer Mecklenburg Wrongful Death AttorneyIf you are one of those customers, you can claim your share of the $13 million by simply filling out an online form. On the form, you will have to certify—under penalty of perjury—that you purchased at least one Red Bull can between January 1, 2002 and October 3, 2014. If you did, you can choose either a $10 reimbursement or a voucher for $15 worth of Red Bull products.

The company was sued by Plaintiff Benjamin Careathers in 2013 in United States District Court for the Southern District of New York. Careathers alleged that the company misled him about the energy drink’s health benefits. Careathers—who said he had been drinking Red Bull for over ten years—said the company’s claims that the drink increased consumers’ performance, concentration and reaction speed were “deceptive, fraudulent and therefore actionable.”

Careathers’ lawsuit was certified as a “class action.” Class action lawsuits enable one or more plaintiffs to file and prosecute claims on behalf of a larger group of people, or a “class.” The class action device saves time and expense by resolving claims of potentially thousands or millions of plaintiffs in a single court action. A company like Red Bull might actually save money by settling a merit-worthy class-action suit rather than facing thousands or millions of identical lawsuits.

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

 

A Uniontown, Ohio mother claims she and her partner must move out of their “all-white hometown” so that their mixed-race daughter will be accepted.

Baby Boy Mecklenburg Injury Lawyer North Carolina Medical Malpractice AttorneyJennifer Cramblett, described by the Daily Mail as a “white lesbian mother,” is suing the Chicago-based Midwest Sperm Bank because, she says, it sent her the wrong sperm samples. She said that she and her partner, Amanda Zinkon, picked a blonde-haired, blue-eyed sperm donor so that their baby would look like Ms. Zinkon.

However, when Cramblett’s order was processed, a clerk accidentally transposed the numbers on her order and sent her vials of sperm donated by an African-American man.

Cramblett said she and Zinkon love their daughter, but they are considering moving to a more diverse community. In her lawsuit, she complained that Payton—the daughter—“has hair typical of an African-American girl.” Cramblett said she must travel to “a black neighborhood” to get the girl a proper cut, “where she is obviously different in appearance, and not overtly welcome.”

Cramblett said many members of her family are openly racist. She said she did not meet a black person until she went to college and worries she is not up to the task of raising a mixed-race child, since she “has limited cultural competency relative to African-Americans.” Cramblett fears when Payton reaches school age, she will be the only non-white child in her class.

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

 

Maybe I am an oddball, but I feel a little insulted when I am asked to present a receipt when exiting a store. The store invited me in. It is equipped with cameras to detect thieves. It employs guards—some or all of them armed—to detect and apprehend thieves. Someone is, or can be, watching literally every move I make in the store. That means someone watches me pay the cashier. In spite of all that, the man or woman guarding the door still wants proof that I bought what I am carrying. I am presumed guilty. I must prove my innocence.

Costco Charlotte Injury Lawyer North Carolina Wrongful Death AttorneyI try not to make a habit of making mountains out of mole hills, so I go with the flow. I present the receipt. I move along through life. It is not the guard’s fault, after all. It is the store’s policy. If I do not like it, I do not have to shop at the store.

But I’ve always wondered what would happen if I refused to show my receipt. Would I be detained? Interrogated? Tortured?

I am kidding, of course, but a Portland, Oregon Costco customer’s refusal to show his receipt to two store employees who asked to see it was no laughing matter. Timothy Walls said he spent $103 on goods at the Costco—enough to need to transport the items to his car in a shopping buggy. When he refused to show his receipt at the exit, one employee yanked the buggy away from him. The worker then grabbed Walls by the collar of his shirt while a second worker administered “a martial arts type” kick to Walls’ leg. Walls said the kick broke his leg.

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

 

Chen, a woman from Shanghai, first met Li online five years ago. About a year ago, their relationship got serious. Near the end of 2013, the couple visited Singapore, where they had sex for the first time. When they returned to China, Li refused to respond to Chen’s repeated attempts to get in touch with him.

Couple on Beach Charlotte Injury Lawyer North Carolina Wrongful Death AttorneySo in February, Chen travelled to Li’s Shanghai apartment and broke in, only to find Li living there with his wife of several years. In March, Chen filed suit against Li, alleging that he had “violated her virginity by deception.” She demanded over $75,000 in damages and a letter of apology.

The Pudong New Area People’s Court considered Chen’s suit and agreed with her “that virginity was a civil right that must be protected.” Chen’s sexual encounter with Li, the court found, negatively impacted her health and reputation. It ordered Li to pay Chen about $5,000 and to write her a letter of apology.

How would Chen’s case fare in North Carolina?

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

 

A North Carolina District Attorney has moved to dismiss claims of sexual harassment and defamation brought by a former employee. The employee, Whitney Nicole Shaffer, worked for District Attorney James C. Gaither for a four-month period in 2013.

Message Bubble Charlotte Injury Lawyer North Carolina Lawsuit AttorneyGaither is the outgoing district attorney for North Carolina’s 25th judicial district, which encompasses all of Burke, Caldwell and Catawba counties. He lost a July runoff election to challenger David Learner, who will take over Gaither’s office next year.

People Icons Charlotte Car Accident Attorney North Carolina Motorcycle Crash LawyerShaffer sued Gaither in June in federal court alleging that the district attorney used his position to intimidate and make unwanted sexual advances toward her. Shaffer resigned her position, but she said Gaither told other attorneys and at least one judge that he fired her. This, Shaffer said, damaged her reputation in the legal community.

In August, the North Carolina Attorney General—which represents Gaither—filed a motion to dismiss Shaffer’s lawsuit. The Attorney General represents Gaither in his capacity as district attorney. Since Shaffer also sued Gaither personally, Gaither hired his own attorney. That attorney—Renee Hughes—filed a motion Tuesday to dismiss Shaffer’s claims brought under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. That Act, Hughes argued, does not impose liability upon individuals.

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Charlotte Personal Injury Attorney Matthew R. Arnold of Arnold & Smith, PLLC answers the question “Can my employer fire me because I filed a workers’ compensation claim?”

 

A sex-discrimination lawsuit brought by a schoolteacher at an elementary school associated with the Roman Catholic Diocese of Fort Wayne-South Bend, Indiana will proceed to trial after United States District Court Judge Robert L. Miller, Jr. denied the diocese’s motion for summary judgment.

Embryo Charlotte Injury Lawyer North Carolina discrimination AttorneyThe teacher, Emily Herx, sued the diocese in 2012 after she was terminated from her teaching position at St. Vincent de Paul School. Herx’s firing came after diocese officials discovered Herx underwent a procedure for in vitro fertilization. In-vitro fertilization is a process in which a man’s sperm and a woman’s egg are joined outside the womb, normally in a petri dish. After the egg and sperm are successfully joined, the resulting embryo is placed into the woman’s womb.

Herx underwent in-vitro fertilization because she suffers from infertility. She argued in her lawsuit that infertility is a protected disability under the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”) and that her termination violated both the ADA and the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

The Roman Catholic Church disapproves of in-vitro fertilization because additional embryos are created to increase the odds of a successful pregnancy. When an embryo is successfully placed in a mother’s womb, the additional embryos are destroyed. The Church believes that human life begins at the moment of conception, or when the sperm and egg join, so the destruction of embryos constitutes the willful destruction of human life.

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

 

Police responding to a burglary at the Radio Shack across from Concord Mills Mall in Concord, North Carolina found smashed-out windows and one suspect, who they removed from the scene in handcuffs. Police tracked down a second suspect a short time later, injured from a possible fall in a wooded area. Rescue crews used a stretcher to extricate the man.

Pepperoni Pizza Charlotte Injury Attorney North Carolina Wrongful Death LawyerIf the injured alleged burglar is as enterprising as Nigel Sykes, he may end up suing Radio Shack and the police for his injuries.

Sykes forced his way through the back door of the Newport, Delaware restaurant Seasons Pizza on November 30, 2010. Sykes held up employees using a handgun; they gave him $140. As Sykes made his way to the front of the store, however, employees wrestled him to the ground and grabbed his handgun.

After that, Sykes alleged, all of the Seasons Pizza employees began punching, kicking and pouring hot soup on his body. He alleged that he suffered “a brutal beating” that ended with him being knocked unconscious. Sykes brought suit in federal court seeking $260,000 in compensation from the restaurant. He also sued two Newport police officers who he said used stun guns on him improperly and denied him access to medical attention.

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Charlotte Personal Injury Attorney Matthew R. Arnold of Arnold & Smith, PLLC answers the question “What if the accident was my fault?”

 

Public policy has ended a man’s lawsuit against a bar owner for injuries the man sustained in a skydiving incident.

skydiving Charlotte Injury Lawyer North Carolina Wrongful Death AttorneyThe man, Stephen Scheuren, was a spectator at The Smiling Moose Saloon & Grill’s 2009 Moosefest, a charity event organized by Smiling Moose owner Cheryl Vogel. At the event, paper plates with numbers written on them were scattered throughout a skydiving landing zone. Skydivers were to pick up plates on landing. Those whose numbers were written on the selected plates won raffle prizes.

Two tandem skydivers, including Manitowoc Mayor Justin Nickel, landed in the landing zone but then slid between two tents into the group of spectators, striking Scheuren and an eight-year-old boy. Scheuren suffered unspecified leg injuries that required surgery.

Mayor Nickel was ultimately dismissed from Scheuren’s lawsuit, but Scheuren obtained a default judgment against one defendant and settled with several others. Only Scheuren’s claims against Vogel remained. She argued that Wisconsin’s so-called “recreational immunity statute” shielded her and The Smiling Moose from liability. A circuit court ruled against Scheuren, so Scheuren appealed.

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Charlotte Personal Injury Attorney Matthew R. Arnold of Arnold & Smith, PLLC answers the question “What does the “one-bite rule” mean in NC dog bite cases?”

 

A killer is on the loose in Union County. On Saturday, a pet owner in the county notified law-enforcement authorities that his two Great Danes had been shot by arrows.

Dog close up Charlotte Injury Lawyer Mecklenburg North Carolina Dog Bite AttorneyAn officer responding to the call found one dog lying near the back corner of the man’s property, while a second dog was found under a shed. An arrow was still stuck in the first dog. The officer could not find a second arrow, but observed what appeared to be an arrow wound to the second dog’s neck. Both dogs died of their injuries.

This followed the fatal shooting of a dog in Union County last week. In that case, a woman found her husky mix dead under her storage building, with four gunshot wounds. The storage building also was riddled bullet holes, according to the Union County Sheriff’s Office. The dog’s owner said the husky was valued at $500.

Last month, two dog owners in Union County reported that their pets had been poisoned with antifreeze. The dog owners theorized that hunters had put out antifreeze to ward off dogs or coyotes. The Union County Sheriff said an investigator was working on those cases, and that using antifreeze to get rid of dogs was illegal.

North Carolina treats cruelty to animals as a criminal matter, and the state routinely prosecutes those who commit cruel acts upon or who are neglectful toward animals. But what recourse does a pet owner have against one who is found responsible for the death of a beloved animal?

Believe it or not, the North Carolina courts have answered this question, but pet owners may not like the answer.

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