Archive for September, 2018

​I’ve Been Hurt in a Car Accident, What Now?

In South Carolina, many accidents are caused each year because of distracted driving or driving under the influence. If you are injured because a driver is using a cell phone to text and not paying attention to the road, you are entitled to compensation if it is determined that you are not at fault. Texting or sending emails on a smart phone is illegal in South Carolina, although using your smart phone or other hand held device to make a phone call is not.

Accident Injuries From Distracted Driving

Your compensation in any personal injury lawsuit is determined by how serious your injuries are, how long they are expected to last, and the percentage you are at fault for the accident. If the other driver was at fault, you receive 100% of the compensation you are entitled to if you win your case. If it is determined that you share fault for the accident, your compensation is lowered accordingly.

Driving laws permit teenagers as young as 15 to have a conditional license in the state of South Carolina. They are allowed to drive alone during daylight, and until midnight with a licensed driver over 21. The number of passengers is restricted, as many young drivers are easily distracted when they get their first license to drive. If you are hurt by a young driver not following the rules of their conditional license, it’s time to talk with an attorney to learn about and protect your rights.

Getting Hurt in an Auto Accident

If you are out of work because of your auto accident injuries, you need a way to support yourself financially. If your injuries are severe enough, you may not be able to return to work at all. These factors are considered in a personal injury lawsuit, and you have the right to seek damages if you are injured because of the negligence or willful misconduct of another driver on the road.

If you have been hurt in a car accident and have received medical attention, it’s time to meet with a personal injury attorney who can help you. Ryan Montgomery, Attorney at Law, LLC is ready to talk with you about your injuries and to develop a case for you to receive financial compensation because of your injuries. For a free initial consultation contact our Greenville or Columbia office.

Parasailing Accident Attorney in SC

Parasailing is a popular activity on the nation’s lakes, waterways, and beaches, and the much-visited resort and tourist areas along the coast of South Carolina are no exception. Each year millions of people worldwide take to the air to enjoy a thrilling ride, strapped into a parachute being towed behind a speeding boat. At first glance, it would seem to be an inherently safe activity, being in a chute that will bring its occupant slowly to the water if the rope breaks or the boat’s engine stops.

A Fun But Risky Pursuit

Nevertheless, parasailing is one of what are known as extreme sports, an airborne one at that, and part of the thrill is that there is an element of danger. That danger is demonstrated by the number of injuries and even fatalities that occur each year, and South Carolina has had its share of them. Many of those that have been injured, or who have lost loved ones in accidents, have filed personal injury lawsuits against the operators of parasailing businesses and have been awarded significant compensation. Industry and safety experts point out that part of the problem is that there is virtually no regulation of the sport at the state or federal level.

Parasailing Accidents In The Carolinas

In 2009, in a widely reported case, Cynthia Collins Woodcock, 60, from North Carolina, and Lorrie Shoup, 56, from Colorado, fell to their deaths off of Ocean Isle Beach, NC when the towline snapped in high wind of up to 34 mph and with tropical storm Danny approaching. After an investigation by the U.S. Coast Guard and local authorities, the parasailing company involved was found negligent in the accident for taking the pair out despite severe and hazardous weather alerts in effect.

In June of 2018 a parasail rider lost both of his legs in an accident off of Myrtle Beach, though this one happened after he had come back down and was heading back to the boat, and somehow became entangled in the boat’s propeller. That accident is still under investigation at the time of this writing.

Many other parasail riders have suffered injuries ranging from bruises, strains, and pulled muscles to broken bones.

Reckless And Negligent Behavior

Many accidents and injuries, as well as equipment failures, go unreported by operators, although they are required to do so to the U.S. Coast Guard and in some cases to local authorities.

A majority of accidents, over 40%, are caused by operating in adverse weather conditions. Many others are caused by human error or reckless operations.

Although passengers sign a waiver, it doesn’t protect businesses from gross negligence.

Personal Injury Attorney

If you or someone you know has been injured in a parasailing accident, you may be entitled to compensation. Contact our offices today for a free and confidential consultation.

​First Case Goes To Trial In Monsanto RoundUp Class Action Suit

The Monsanto Company, a huge global agricultural conglomerate, is in the midst of another class action lawsuit. This time over its widely popular product RoundUp, the most used herbicide in the U.S. It has long been a controversial organization, in recent decades for its role in the proliferation of genetically modified organisms, or GMO foods like corn and soybeans, which many believe to be harmful. It has also been accused by some of attempting to take de facto control of the world’s food supply using its technology and tremendous political clout.

Before it became an agricultural giant, it was one of the companies that produced Agent Orange, used in Vietnam and linked to many veteran illnesses, and also Dioxin, DDT, and PCBs. In 1970 Monsanto introduced RoundUp, chemically known as glyphosate, which brought the company $4.8 billion in profits in 2015. But now it’s the basis of a lawsuit which potentially could cost the company much more than that in compensation to cancer victims.

RoundUp And Cancer Risk

The company’s troubles began in March of 2015, when the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), a part of the World Health Organization, found that glyphosate, the main ingredient in RoundUp, was “probably carcinogenic to humans”, which means it can possibly cause cancer. Specifically, studies have linked exposure to the chemical to multiple myeloma, non-Hodgkin lymphoma, and leukemia. The report also stated that “The evidence in humans is from studies of exposures, mostly agricultural, in the USA, Canada, and Sweden published since 2001. In addition, there is convincing evidence that glyphosate also can cause cancer in laboratory animals.”

The Monsanto Company has long refuted these findings. Vice president of strategy Scott Partridge stated, “More than 800 scientific studies, the U.S. EPA , the National Institutes of Health, and regulators around the world have concluded that glyphosate is safe for use and does not cause cancer…we have empathy for anyone suffering from cancer, but the scientific evidence clearly shows that glyphosate was not the cause. We look forward to presenting this evidence to the court.”

First Case Goes To Trial

In June of 2018, Dewayne Johnson, 46, a former California public schools groundskeeper and father of two, became the first cancer sufferer to go to trial in the class action lawsuit against Monsanto. More than 800 others joined the lawsuit last year, but Johnson is the first to see a trial because he is close to death, according to his doctors. Thousands of others are ready to join the class action, because anyone who has been exposed to RoundUp and has cancer can also be a part of the lawsuit, and the financial settlement in compensation to cancer victims could be considerable.

Contact RoundUp Attorneys

We are dedicated South Carolina attorneys helping those harmed by Roundup®. Call Ryan Montgomery Attorney at Law in Columbia or Greenville for a no-obligation claim evaluation.

Injured on the Job? Here Are Some Answers

Injured on the Job? Here Are Some Answers

How Long Do I have to Report a Workers Comp Injury?

Under South Carolina Law you have 90 days to report an injury from the date you knew, or should have known, you had the injury.  Repetitive Trauma cases like carpal tunnel or others can be tricky as to the 90 day requirement. Note: the longer you wait to report any injury the more likely it is the insurance company will use the delay against you.

How Long Do I have to File  a Claim for Workers’ Compensation?

In South Carolina you have two (2) years to file a claim with the South Carolina Workers’ Compensation Commission. This is NOT the same as reporting it to your job or to the insurance company. You MUST establish a claim with the Workers Comp Commission in Columbia, SC. 

My Employer Says He Doesn’t Have Workers Comp Insurance. What do I do?

If an employer has 4 or more regularly employed workers then he/she must carry workers comp insurance coverage.  If they do not, then there is a State Fund set up to pay these claims and the employer will have to reimburse that Fund for your on the job injury.  You are still protected but will likely need a lawyer to assist.

My Employer Says I am an independent Contractor So I don’t get Workers Comp. Is this true?

Depends.  Many employers think that simply because they pay someone under a 1099 form that makes them an independent contractor. This is not true.  There is a test in South Carolina to determine if you are in fact an independent contractor (no comp) or a statutory employer (yes comp) and all centers around your boss’s control of you.  The 4 factors are:

  1. Direct Evidence of Right or Exercise of Control- I.e. Who sets work schedule, who tells you where to go, who tells you what to do, etc.
  2. Method of Payment- Cash, Check
  3. Furnishing of Equipment or Tools
  4. Right to Fire The Injured Worker

Who Pays My Medical Care for an On the Job Injury?

If the claim is accepted then the insurance company “should” pay 100% of all casually related authorized medical care. This means any doctors they send you to that they should pay the bill. If you are getting an invoice for any amount this may not be correct.

Can I Pick My Own Doctor?

Not if you want workers’ comp to pay the bill.  If it is an admitted case then you have must go to their doctor in order to have that bill paid. I am of the mindset you are always entitled to go to your own doctor but don’t expect that bill to be paid by the workers comp insurance carrier.

What if I have Other Questions that Aren’t Answered here?

That’s easy.  Schedule a free workers comp injury consultation where I will personally sit down with you and answer all of your questions.

​Neighbor State Passes Hands-Free Law, Is South Carolina Next?

Georgia took drastic measures to curb the growing problem of distracted driving this week when they enacted a law prohibiting drivers from not only using but touching a mobile device. According to the Greenville News, the new law aims to dramatically reduce the number of accidents caused by distracted driving related to mobile device use. High fines and stiff penalties come into play for those drivers who refuse to follow the new law.

Could a Hands-Free Law Be Headed to South Carolina?

South Carolina lawmakers are also hoping to reduce fatalities and accidents in the state. Despite having fewer drivers on the road than Georgia, the state of SC has a higher rate of accidents and injuries on the roadways. Many of these are related to distractions; the primary culprit is cell phone use. If South Carolina follows Georgia’s footsteps, a new law would require phones, laptops and devices like iPads and Kindles be stowed away from the driver and not touched or held in the vehicle.

Driving in Georgia? Here’s What you Need to Know

Whether you cross the state line on 95 heading to Savannah or to the west on the way to Atlanta, stow your devices as soon as you see the “Welcome to Georgia” sign. You could be pulled over if you are seen with the device in hand and since the law is so new officers may be on the alert for drivers who are not in compliance. You’ll be safer on the road and you won’t risk a moving violation if you put your phone down until the next rest stop

Distracted Driving and Car Accidents

Distracted driving continues to contribute to accidents on all the nation’s roadways and is a big issue for Carolinians. If you have been in an accident with someone who was distracted by a cell phone or other device, you could be impacted for years to come. Property damage, lasting injuries and even missed work days add up fast. If you have been in a collision a personal injury attorney can help you recover your losses and get back on track.

A South Carolina Accident Attorney Can Help

If you’ve been injured by a distracted driver – one who was talking on the phone, texting, eating or even paying more attention to passengers than to the road, we can help. A South Carolina accident attorney can protect your rights and help you get past the upheaval caused by an accident. Contact us today to talk about what happened to you and learn about your options; our compassionate and caring team is just a phone call away.