Monday, July 20, 2020

How Do You Know When to Contact a Personal Injury Lawyer?"

General Injury Lawyer
Determining if you need a personal injury lawyer for your claim is not always easy. Especially if you have been in car accidents before, you may think that all you need to do is call the insurance company. This may or may not work in your favor but most people think that this is simply the way it goes. However, personal injury attorneys want you to know that you should not expect things to go poorly when you get in contact with someone else’s insurance company. In fact, it can seem like people are out to get you and are not on your side and the truth is you may be right. While we do not encourage our clients to be paranoid, we do want to give you a healthy dose of reality. Even if the other party’s insurance agent seems like the nicest person in the world, their job is not to make sure you get the compensation you deserve after an accident. It is to make sure their company pays as little as possible.

Personal Injury Claims and Getting a Lawyer
With this in mind, you may be wondering if you need a personal injury attorney for all claims you make against someone else. We have written down a helpful list of times when it would be especially prudent to have a personal injury attorney from our firm on your side.

1. Your injuries are severe. In some cases, you may find that you have minor bruising and do not wish to even make a claim. We understand not wanting to make a big deal out of nothing. However, when your injuries are more obvious and severe, you may have a bigger personal injury claim on your hands. Typically, the more severe your injuries are, the bigger the compensation and the longer it will take you to recover. You don’t want to rely on yourself to fight a personal injury claim when you are recovering from your injuries.
2. You have a disability. When an accident causes you to have a permanent disability or a long-term disability, the lawyers at Cohen & Cohen can explain how it can be particularly difficult to try to determine what type of compensation you deserve and how much. A personal injury attorney who has knowledge of personal injuries and disabilities is the right person for the job.

If you would like to speak with a personal injury attorney about your claim, please contact a nearby office now.

Thursday, July 9, 2020

Emojis can have legal consequences.🥺

👨‍⚖️ An emoji is "any of various small images, symbols, or icons used in text fields in electronic communication (as in text messages, e-mail, and social media) to express the emotional attitude of the writer, convey information succinctly, communicate a message playfully without using words, etc." Since 2010 emojis have become common in popular usage an some emojis have acquired standard definitions.  Emojis have gained acceptance in personal communications as well as business communications.

12 most commonly misunderstood emojis | Daily Mail OnlineA number of courts have examined specific communications in which emojis were used.  These cases addressed the issue of what, if any, legal effect is to be given to the communication which used emojis.  In a Massachusetts case the District Attorney argued that an emoji with eyes crossed sent by the defendant to the victim was evidence of  premeditated  murder.  The court allowed the jury to consider the emoji as evidence.  A Colorado Court discussed the difficulty of interpreting emojis as it is a picture used to convey information.  The Court noted that interpretation is more difficult as the actual image created by the emoji can differ depending on the software used by each person.  An Israeli Court concluded that a contract had been created after considering a communication that used emojis.
Squirrel Emoji [Free Download IOS Emojis] | Emoji Island
Courts have interpreted emojis in criminal cases, contract cases, family law cases, sexual harassment cases, copyright cases, and a variety of other cases.  Court will continue to interpret emojis as long as people use them for communication.

⚖️ Balance Scale Emoji Meaning with Pictures: from A to ZIn all of these cases, the Courts treated the emojis as a form of communication.  Just as with any other communication, Courts have to interpret the communication.  Emojis can be difficult to interpret and Courts will continue to struggle with the meanings of individual communications.  When communicating on a subject that is important I advise that people should use clear communications and avoid the use of emojis. If you want to know the legal consequences of an emoji communication you should consult an attorney.

Saturday, July 4, 2020

After divorce update your estate plan and survivor provisions for assets

A divorce judgment will allocate assets between the spouses. This property division will address all assets owned by either party or both party without regard to the title prior to the divorce.  In many instances the final judgment will allow some or all assets to be allocated to the party who owned the asset prior to divorce.  Many of these assets will have contract terms that contain payable on death clauses.  Typically these payable on death clauses are paid to the surviving spouse. 

After a divorce, each spouse should examine all assets allocated to them and review the payable on death clauses.  In particular, life insurance policies, retirement accounts, pensions, investment accounts, and bank accounts should all be examined.  If the divorce decree requires death designations then there is a specific duty to conform to the requirements of the judgment.  If the decree is silent on death designations then each spouse is free to change the death designations to any person they want.  However, if a person still wants to make their ex-spouse the death beneficiary then extra steps must be taken.

Massachusetts law treats any death designation to an ex-spouse as revoked upon divorce.  This means that if a person wants their ex-spouse to receive death benefits they must take some action, after divorce judgment issues, to reinstate the death benefit.  I recommend that if a person wants their ex-spouse to continue to have death benefits that they state so in a will.  In addition, they should notify the trustee of the asset (life insurance company, brokerage firm, bank, etc.)  that they are ratifying the death benefit designation.  If a person does not write a will after a divorce then they should write their intention in a document that can be signed before a notary public.

If these steps are not taken, then the assets are not likely to be distributed as desired after death.  In addition, there is an excellent chance that litigation will be filed to determine who gets the asset after death.

It is strongly recommended that everybody who gets divorced should consult a lawyer and execute a will after the divorce.