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September 2009 Archives

Truck Accidents Seminar

Tens of thousands of people are injured or killed in accidents with big trucks -- 18 wheelers, big rigs, tractor-trailers -- every year. It is no surprise that when a fully loaded big rig (weighing as much as 80,000 pounds) collides with a passenger automobile (weighing 3,500 pounds), the occupants of the passenger vehicle are likely to fair much worse than the driver of the truck. I recently spoke at the "Fatigued Truckers -- From Crash to Closing Argument" seminar sponsored by the Association of Plaintiff Interstate Trucking Lawyers of America on the topic of Written Discovery. Over three days, there were over 25 nationally recognized experts -- including lawyers, doctors and engineers -- who shared their knowledge of prosecuting cases against truck drivers and trucking companies who negligently harm others while using our public roads.

South Texas College of Law Houston - Casino Night 2009

This past week, I attended South Texas College of Law Houston's (STCL's) Casino Night that it hosted at the Rice Hotel in downtown Houston. The event has proven to be a good fundraiser for the school and for the Advocacy Program, which is a perennial powerhouse in the world of mock trial and moot court. The event is held for the alumni and STCL provided several gaming tables where the alumni gambled for tickets that would be used later during a raffle. In addition, there was a silent auction where the alumni could make donations to the school and receive something in return. For example, items for auction included an autographed jersey of Yao Ming and a chance to throw out the first pitch at one of the Astros games. The alumni bid for the various the items and experiences, all in supporting STCL.

Motor Coach Industries (MCI) Recalls 2009 Model D4500 And D4505 Buses

MCI IS RECALLING MODEL YEAR 2009 D4500/4505 COACHES EQUIPPED WITH THE MERITOR FH 946 14,000LB RATED STEERABLE TAG AXLE. DUE TO INSUFFICIENT CLAMPING FORCE OF THE CYLINDER LOCK PLATE, IT MAY MOVE FROM ITS NORMAL SET POSITION, WHICH IN TURN COULD RESULT IN THE TAG AXLE NOT AUTOMATICALLY LOCKING, OR LOCKING WITH THE WHEELS NOT IN A STRAIGHT AHEAD POSITION.

New Laws Passed Regarding Teen Drivers and Child Booster Seat Usage

Parents need to be aware of recent new laws that go into effect September 1 regarding driving and child passenger safety! Below is a very brief description of the recent changes and some recommendations as these new laws take effect.

Houston Bar Association Fee Dispute Committee

I recently volunteered to be on the HBA Fee Dispute Committee. Today was our first meeting for the year. Going into the meeting, I wasn't even sure what exactly I was volunteering for, but the name sounded interesting. Once I arrived, it soon became clear that the HBA has a program that not many people know about that is a wonderful service to both lawyers and clients. Believe it or not, there are times when lawyers and clients can't agree on who is owed money and how much. I know, it's shocking to think that lawyers would ever disagree with a client. In the event this ever happens to you, be aware that the HBA offers a FREE service to resolve these disputes. Members of the HBA as well as non-lawyers volunteer their time to sit as an arbitration panel over fee disputes. In order for a dispute to be eligible, both the client and the attorney must voluntarily consent to use the HBA fee dispute process. In the last 10 years, the committee has successfully arbitrated on average 15 fee disputes per year. The panel who hears the dispute consists of two attorneys and one non-attorney. But like I said before, the best part is it is free. For more information on the process, please visit the Houston Bar Association website. With so many people willing to volunteer their time, you might take advantage of it if you ever find yourself in a fee dispute.

Government Warns about Deadly Bassinets

After two more babies have died, the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has issued a new warning about a bassinet named "Simplicity close-sleeper/bedside sleeper." The infants were killed when they were "trapped" by the bassinets. The bassinets have already been recalled, but not all parents have received the warning.

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