Knoxville Tennessee Legal Blog

Hours of service regulations seek to curtail truck accidents

Semi-trucks pose a significant risk to other motorists. A simple mistake in these big rigs can have serious ramification, resulting in a truck accident that leaves victims with serious injuries, including brain and spinal cord injuries. Some of these victims are left permanently disabled. Other die. Sadly, even though minor errors can cause these tragic results, truckers often make more egregious mistakes that are easily preventable.

This is why federal regulators have stepped in. By implementing certain rules, they hope to better ensure safe trucking and protect the public. One of the most important trucking regulations is that which pertains to hours of service. These regulations dictate how long truckers can stay on the road and when they have to take breaks. The aim is to prevent trucker fatigue and the risks that come with it.

Could your post-surgical pain result from something left behind?

It's 2019, and you expect that when you go through surgery, the advances in medical technology will make sure that your surgery succeeds. More than likely, your surgeon fixed the problem for which you needed the operation, but for some reason, you just aren't getting better.

In fact, your pain could increase to the point it becomes a threat to your life. What's going on? The sad reality is that your surgeon and his or her team may have left something in your body, and now, you must undergo one or more additional surgeries to remove the object and repair any damage it caused. You may be surprised at what doctors have discovered inside people's bodies.

Famed singer's written wills may lead to probate litigation

If you've been following the news then you've probably heard about the issues surrounding famed singer Aretha Franklin's estate. At first, reports indicated that Franklin died without a will, which meant that all of her assets and debts were going to be subjected to intestate succession and an extensive probate process. This meant that her assets were likely to be divided evenly amongst her four sons. New developments in the case, though, may change the course of her estate.

Recent legal filings indicate that Franklin actually had three handwritten wills, which were recently found at her residence. One of those wills was found under couch cushions. All three of the wills, one of which was written in 2010 and two in 2014, have been submitted to the court for a determination of their legal validity.

Changes to Knoxville's zoning laws remains stalled

Navigating Knoxville's zoning ordinances can be a nightmare. And the stakes can be high for those who are deemed to have gone astray form those regulations. In fact, a violation of zoning laws can result in massive fines that can leave a business devastated. But that's not all. The government may also require a business to remove a structure form the property in question, which can be an expensive endeavor.

For the last three years, Knoxville has been looking to revamp its existing zoning laws. These changes may have significant ramifications for property owners, and it may effect how businesses operate. The current zoning laws, which are 60 years old, are outdated and don't always meet the needs of the local population. This is significant considering they currently dictate what can be built where. These regulations even deal with things like appropriate lighting.

Can verbal promises be enforceable through business litigation?

The business world in Tennessee operates on contracts, which, in their most basic terms, are legally enforceable agreements whereby each party promises something to the other. The best practice is to commemorate these agreements in written form, so that there is no confusion as to each party's obligations. Yet, there may be instances where a verbal promise becomes legally enforceable. Sometimes silence can even constitute an agreement.

The determining factor when it comes to the enforceability of a verbal promise is usually detrimental reliance. So, for example, if a party promises to sell goods for a certain price and a buyer foregoes a contract with another seller in reliance on that promise, and financial harm results, then a contract may be found to have been created amongst the parties. It is worth noting, though, that for enforceability to be realized the detrimental reliance must be reasonable and foreseeable to the party that made the verbal promise.

Medical malpractice and informed consent in Tennessee

Most Tennesseans trust their doctors. They turn to these highly educated and trained professionals for quick and accurate diagnoses of medical conditions, as well as effective treatment. Yet, far too often medical professionals fail to live up to this responsibility, thereby putting innocent individuals at risk of being seriously injured, developing a worsened medical condition or dying. When this occurs, a medical malpractice lawsuit may be justified.

One way that medical malpractice can manifest is through treatment that goes beyond the scope of informed consent. Prior to proceeding with a course of treatment, a doctor must explain the diagnosis to the patient in clear and easily understandable terms. Then, the medical professional must explain each available course of treatment, including its risks and benefits. A doctor should also inform the patient of the risks of not seeking treatment. Only after a patient has received this information can he or she adequately consent to a course of treatment.

Is the driver next to you drunk or just drowsy?

You never know who is driving the vehicles around you as you travel Tennessee's roadways. The person driving the next vehicle might diligently pay attention or not. You have no way of knowing.

Then again, some driving behaviors at least alert you to the fact that something just isn't right with the driver. Swerving, speeding, abruptly changing lanes and more could give you pause and reason to attempt to get away from that vehicle. In fact, you might speculate that the driver is drunk, but you could be wrong.

Knoxville firm stands up for those hurt in car accidents

It is important that all motorists in Tennessee understand the dangers of cellphone use while driving. The grim reality is that those who manipulate their cellphone while driving can wind up essentially driving blind over the course of great distances. This is because when traveling at a high rate of speed it doesn't take long to drive hundreds of yards in the briefest of moments. Therefore, sending a text, checking an email or surfing the web, even intermittently, can put other motorists at extreme risk of being injured in a car accident.

Perhaps the most tragic part of these wrecks is that they are wholly preventable. This is why the law allows a car accident victim to seek to impose liability from a negligent driver and, if warranted, recover compensation for damages caused. Of course, this isn't always an easy task because defendants usually claim that they weren't in the wrong. Instead, they may try to place the blame on the car accident victim.

The trustee's breach of the fiduciary duty in Tennessee

Utilizing one or more trusts can be an effective way to plan for the distribution of an estate. Through a trust, an individual in Tennessee can set terms on the release of assets, thereby giving them control over their estate even long after they gone. These trusts are managed by trustees who are either named in estate planning documents or appointed by a court. These individuals carry a heavy responsibility because they act as fiduciaries, meaning that they must act in a way that furthers the best interests of the trust and its named beneficiaries.

A fiduciary may have many responsibilities. He or she may be charged with distributing assets in accordance with the terms of a trust, but he or she may also be responsible for investing trust funds and accounting for all assets in a trust. Failing to adhere to any of these duties can result in a breach of a trustee's fiduciary duties, which could justify legal action.

Business litigation and fraudulent misrepresentation

In the business world, a lot depends on the creation of and adherence to contracts and other agreements. These contracts can pertain to just about anything, from funding processes and supply chain functionality to employment terms and work processes. Of course, there is often a lot of negotiation that occurs before these agreements are formalized, but sometimes false promises are made or important facts are inflated in order to close the deal. When this happens, legal action may be justified.

Fraudulent misrepresentation is all too common in the business realm. This illegal act occurs when a false representation is either knowingly or recklessly made with the intention of another party relying on it to their detriment, thereby resulting in financial harm. This type of misrepresentation can occur in a number of ways and in a variety of contexts. For example, a supplier may flat out lie about having access to highly desirable goods in order to secure a contract. This type of intentional act will qualify as fraudulent misrepresentation so long as detrimental reliance and financial harm can be shown.

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The Hurley Law Firm

The Hurley Law Firm, P.C.
205 Mohican Street
Knoxville, TN 37919

Phone: 865-888-5472
Fax: (865) 546-8121
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