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ARCHIVES: March 2018

Attorney Arden Presents at University of South Carolina Honors College

South Carolina Workers' Compensation Lawyer, Mark Arden, Presents at University of South Carolina Honors CollegeMark Arden, a founding partner of Chappell Smith & Arden, P.A., delivered a presentation on the Workers’ Compensation system to the “History of Trial by Jury” class at the University of South Carolina Honors College. His presentation focused on the “Grand Bargain”—the compromise by which workers surrendered their right to a jury trial for a more conservative but more certain “no fault” system of compensation.  The class discussed the positives and negatives of the Grand Bargain and how the Workers’ Compensation system could be improved upon to promote justice.

Mark Arden’s law practice has focused on Workers’ Compensation for over thirty years. He is a former president of the South Carolina chapter of Injured Workers Advocates and estimates he has handled several thousand individual workers’ compensation claims.

Physical Restraint of Nursing Home Patients

Columbia Nursing Home Abuse Lawyers weigh in on the use of physical restraint of nursing home patients. Residents of long term nursing home facilities typically have physical and cognitive impairments that require close supervision to ensure patient safety.  The protection of the residents is the primary responsibility of the administrators, doctors, nurses, and staff of the nursing home. To reduce the risk of patient injuries from falling or tampering with intravenous lines or medical equipment, a doctor may order physical restraints to be used temporarily. Physical restraints should only be used as a last resort effort to ensure patient safety, and those in restraints should be monitored closely.

Though state and federal lawmakers have been trying to prohibit the use of physical restraints, nursing home facilities in South Carolina continue to use them at a rate that is three times the national average. Restraints come in a variety of designs that include wrist and arm bands that secure patients to bed rails, harness-type restraints that are designed to keep patients upright and secured in a wheelchair, and leg restraints that prevent patients from getting out of bed.  While the idea is to protect the patient, restraints often cause fractures, bruises, skin abrasions, and tears.

State and federal laws prohibit the use of restraints without a doctor’s authorization. The law mandates that the authorization must be re-evaluated and renewed every 24 hours. The family or guardians of the nursing home resident must be notified if restraints are employed, and close supervision by nurses and staff is required when the patient is restrained.

Protecting the State’s Nursing Home Residents

The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control is responsible for protecting the state’s nursing home residents. They investigate grievances filed by patients and families, and they conduct routine surprise inspections of all facilities. The agency reports about 10 percent of the residents in South Carolina nursing homes are being restrained, sometimes for hours.

In one case, a South Carolina man suffered fatal injuries after he became entangled in the restraints that were meant to protect him. After being restrained in his wheelchair by a harness-styled restraint, the man choked to death when he slid down the chair and the harness restricted his breathing. When the nursing home staff checked on him, they were too late. No one is sure how long he had suffered. The family of the deceased is taking the nursing home to court for negligent death. They are hoping that the lawsuit brings attention to the issue of unnecessary and unsupervised restraint of nursing home patients so that other families do not have to suffer the pain of losing a loved one in the same way.

Columbia Nursing Home Abuse Lawyers at Chappell Smith & Arden, P.A. Advocate for Residents of Nursing Homes and Assisted Living Facilities

The Columbia nursing home abuse lawyers at Chappell Smith & Arden, P.A. are staunch advocates for residents of nursing homes and assisted living facilities.  Our firm is committed to protecting the legal rights of these individuals and is dedicated to helping those who have suffered abuse claim the compensation and justice they deserve. Call us at 803-929-3600 or contact us online to schedule a consultation today. Our South Carolina offices serve clients in Columbia, Aiken, Camden, Sumter, Orangeburg, Greenville, Florence, Beaufort, Irmo, Spartanburg, Myrtle Beach, Hilton Head Island, West Columbia, Rock Hill, Charleston, Lexington, Winnsboro, Summerville, and throughout the counties of Lexington County, Richland County, Sumter County, Charleston County, Aiken County, Florence County, Lancaster County, York County, Spartanburg County, Orangeburg County, Kershaw County, and Newberry County.

Attorney Newman to Present at Upcoming PEOPIL Conference

South Carolina Personal Injury Lawyer, Graham Newman. of Chappell Smith & Arden, P.A. to Present at Ucpoming PEOPIL ConferenceAttorney Graham Newman of CSA Law will be a presenter at the upcoming Pan-European Organisation of Personal Injury Lawyers (PEOPIL) in the beautiful city of Barcelona, Spain.  PEOPIL is AAJ’s companion organization.

This conference will cover hot topics in product liability and mass torts, and reflect on European, United States and International perspectives on current issues in med mal and product liability – including pharmaceutical products. Graham will present on hot topics in product liability and mass torts for breast implants.  View the conference program here.

 

Pedestrian from Greer Fatally Struck by Car in Taylors

Pedestrian from Greer Fatally Struck by Car in TaylorsA pedestrian was fatally struck by a car in Taylors, South Carolina on Monday night. Around 8:15 pm, the pedestrian accident occurred when a 24-year-old man from Greer, South Carolina who was walking along Wade Hampton Boulevard was hit by a car. The man who was fatally struck succumbed to his fatal injuries while the driver incurred no injuries.

Traffic laws protect pedestrians, but, sometimes, drivers fail to use caution when driving in their midst or may be unaware of the guidelines in place. Pedestrians may be at-risk for sustaining numerous injuries as well as potential fatalities if they are hit by a vehicle. Debilitating injuries and emotional distress may result from a pedestrian accident, which may upset their quality of life.

If you or someone you love has been injured in a pedestrian accident, our South Carolina personal injury lawyers at Chappell Smith & Arden, P.A. will help you every step of the way. You may schedule a free consultation by calling 803-929-3600 or 800-531-9780 or contact us online. With offices located throughout South Carolina, we serve clients in Lexington County, Richland County, Sumter County, Aiken County, Florence County, Lancaster County, York County, Orangeburg County, Kershaw County, and Newberry County, including those in towns of Columbia, Lexington, Irmo, Chapin, Rock Hill, Aiken, Sumter, Newberry, Florence, and Spartanburg.

Spinal Cord Injuries from Truck Accidents

Columbia Truck Accident Lawyers weigh in on spinal cord injuries caused by truck accidents. Commercial truck accidents often cause serious and fatal injuries. Spinal cord injuries are common among victims of truck accidents and can result in life-long disabilities and health complications. A consultation with an experienced truck accident lawyer is vital to pursuing compensation and damages for your injuries.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, there are an average of over 300,000 truck accidents in the United States annually, fatally injuring nearly 4,000 people, with 100,000 more injured. An average-sized commercial truck weighing over 10,000 pounds acts like a bulldozer in a collision with an average-sized passenger vehicle.

When a commercial truck rear-ends a motor vehicle, the car can propel forward, hitting other vehicles and obstacles in its path, or can be run over by the large truck. Cars caught in the path of a jack-knifed truck can be crushed, and those that crash into the rear-end of a truck can suffer multiple injuries from the force of the collision.

Types of Truck Accidents and Spinal Cord Injuries

Spinal cord injuries can happen in any type of accident, but when these injuries result from a wreck with a large truck, the results can be catastrophic. Victims that are rear-ended by a big-rig can injure their spinal cord when they hit a vehicle or obstacle in front of them. Vertebrae in the neck and spine can break, causing paralysis from the neck or shoulders down.

Those in passenger vehicles can also be pushed or thrown in such a way that the mid and lower vertebrate in the spinal cord snaps. When this type of injury occurs, victims are often left as paraplegics or quadriplegics. Paraplegics typically lose feeling and the ability to function from their waist area down to their toes, while quadriplegics can lose functioning from their neck and shoulder area to their toes. Victims lose the ability to breathe on their own, suffer urinary and bowel incontinence, and lose the ability to walk or move their extremities.

Compensation for Victims of Spinal Cord Injuries

Victims of spinal cord injuries resulting from a truck accident can claim compensation and damages for their injuries. Mobility assistance devices, such as wheelchairs and motorized lifts, are vital to restoring movement after a spinal cord injury, but are often too expensive for the average person to afford on their own.

Determining fault in a truck accident requires investigation of the truck driver, the truck company that owns the vehicle, the manufacturers of the truck, and the driver of the passenger vehicle. Consulting with a competent and qualified truck accident lawyer can ensure that victims claim the monetary damages and compensation they are entitled under the law.

Columbia Truck Accident Lawyers at Chappell Smith & Arden, P.A. Help Injured Victims Claim Compensation for Their Damages

If you or someone you know has been injured in a truck accident, the Columbia truck accident lawyers at Chappell Smith & Arden, P.A. can help you claim the compensation you may be entitled to receive. Call us at 803-929-3600 or contact us online to schedule a consultation today. Our six office locations serve clients throughout South Carolina, including those in Columbia, Aiken, Camden, Sumter, Orangeburg, Greenville, Florence, Beaufort, Irmo, Spartanburg, Myrtle Beach, Hilton Head Island, West Columbia, Rock Hill, Charleston, Lexington, Winnsboro, Summerville, and throughout the counties of Lexington County, Richland County, Sumter County, Charleston County, Aiken County, Florence County, Lancaster County, York County, Spartanburg County, Orangeburg County, Kershaw County, and Newberry County.

Fatal Head-on Collision Occurs in Orangeburg County

Fatal Head-on Collision Occurs in Orangeburg CountyOn Thursday night, a fatal head-on collision occurred in Orangeburg County, South Carolina. Around 9:25 pm, the motor vehicle accident took place on US 178 and Black Pond Road and involved an SUV and a truck. During the fatal head-on collision, the SUV crossed the center line of the road and slammed into the truck. Upon impact, the truck driver sustained fatal injuries while the SUV driver was airlifted and brought to the Trident Hospital with undisclosed personal injuries.

A head-on collision may be brought on by several contributing factors such as drowsy driving, speeding, distracted driving, or drunk driving. Since the motor vehicle accident occurred at night, lowered visibility and flashing lights may create hazardous conditions for drivers. Many times, head-on collisions cause serious injuries like brain and spinal injuries or potential fatalities.

If you or your loved ones have been injured in a motor vehicle accident, our Columbia car accident lawyers at Chappell Smith & Arden, P.A. will fight for your rights. You may schedule a free consultation by calling 803-929-3600 or 800-531-9780 or contact us online. With offices located throughout South Carolina, we serve clients in Lexington County, Richland County, Sumter County, Aiken County, Florence County, Lancaster County, York County, Orangeburg County, Kershaw County, and Newberry County, including those in towns of Columbia, Lexington, Irmo, Chapin, Rock Hill, Aiken, Sumter, Newberry, Florence, and Spartanburg.

Multi-Vehicle Accident in Columbia Leaves Fatality and Three Injured

Multi-Vehicle Crash in Columbia Leaves Fatality and Three InjuredIn Columbia, South Carolina, a multi-vehicle accident left one fatality and three victims with personal injuries. On Sunday evening, around 5:46 pm, the fatal vehicle accident occurred when an SUV attempted to make a left-hand turn on Garners Ferry Road and was struck by a sedan, which caused fatal injuries for the passenger in the SUV. Both the driver and passenger of the sedan and the SUV motorist were transported to the Richland Memorial Hospital to tend to their personal injuries after the multi-vehicle accident.

Side-impact collisions usually occur in intersections, parking lots, or on highways involving passing cars and several lanes. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that in the past 20 years side-impact crashes have increased from around 20 percent to about 50 percent due to excessive speeds and higher numbers of SUVs on the road. One of the most common injuries incurred in this type of accident are traumatic brain injuries.

If you or your loved ones have been injured in a car accident, our Columbia car accident lawyers at Chappell Smith & Arden, P.A. advocate for victims and their families. You may schedule a free consultation by calling 803-929-3600 or 800-531-9780 or contact us online. With offices located throughout South Carolina, we serve clients in Lexington County, Richland County, Sumter County, Aiken County, Florence County, Lancaster County, York County, Orangeburg County, Kershaw County, and Newberry County, including those in towns of Columbia, Lexington, Irmo, Chapin, Rock Hill, Aiken, Sumter, Newberry, Florence, and Spartanburg.

Truck Driver Shoulder Injuries

York County Workers’ Compensation Lawyers weigh in on truck drivers with shoulder injuries. Shoulder injuries are the second most common work-related injury for a commercial truck driver. Although back injuries are more prevalent in this profession, shoulder injuries are often costlier and require more time missed from work due to longer recovery periods and more extensive therapies. According to the recent Shoulder Injuries in Commercial Truck Drivers study conducted at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, very little is known about this type of common injury.

Researchers found a wealth of information available on the nature and treatment of shoulder injuries affecting those in the nursing, construction, and electrical industries, yet there is virtually no evidence of research into shoulder injuries directly related to truck drivers. While the recent University of Alabama study aimed to examine the types of shoulder injuries caused by driving, it also wanted to find out what led to this type of injury and why the cost of treatment and recovery periods were so extensive.

Common Misconceptions for Truck Drivers

The study found that there is a common misconception among healthcare providers that truck drivers spend most of their time sitting behind the wheel.  While this may be the case for most long-haul drivers, almost all truck drivers are required to perform a host of physically strenuous tasks as part of their daily job functions.

The sheer act of climbing in and out of the truck’s cab requires a great deal of upper body strength. Drivers are constantly working with heavy tarps, chains, and straps as they secure their loads. Loading and unloading of heavy boxes and equipment takes a great toll on the upper arms and shoulders. These repetitive motions frequently result in severe tears of the muscles, ligaments, and tendons in the shoulders and rotator cuff injuries.

Shoulder Injuries Are More Severe

The study also indicated that treating shoulder injuries is often more complicated than treating a back injury. The shoulder is comprised of many different musculoskeletal components. Injuries to the shoulder joint, shoulder blade, and rotator cuff often require surgery to repair damage. Long periods of pain management and physical therapy are frequently required to regain strength before the injured worker can return to their job.

More research is required to fully determine how best to approach the treatment of shoulder injuries directly related to truck driving. Those involved with the recent study are hopeful that their findings will lead to further investigations to determine how shoulder injuries directly related to truck driving can be prevented through strengthening exercises and ergonomic innovations.

York County Workers’ Compensation Lawyers at Chappell Smith & Arden, P.A. Help Injured Truck Drivers Claim Workers’ Compensation Benefits

If you are a truck driver that has been injured on the job, you may be entitled to Workers’ Compensation benefits. The experienced team of York County Workers’ Compensation lawyers at Chappell Smith & Arden, P.A. are dedicated to helping you claim the maximum amount of compensation available. Call us at 803-929-3600 or contact us online to schedule a consultation today. Our six South Carolina office locations serve clients throughout the state, including those in Columbia, Aiken, Camden, Sumter, Orangeburg, Greenville, Florence, Beaufort, Irmo, Spartanburg, Myrtle Beach, Hilton Head Island, West Columbia, Rock Hill, Charleston, Lexington, Winnsboro, Summerville, and throughout the counties of Lexington County, Richland County, Sumter County, Charleston County, Aiken County, Florence County, Lancaster County, York County, Spartanburg County, Orangeburg County, Kershaw County, and Newberry County.

South Carolina Hit and Run Regulation

Columbia Car Accident Lawyers weigh in on South Carolina's regulation on hit and run accidents. A driver recently struck and fatally injured a pedestrian along Buckwalter Parkway, and after stopping briefly, drove away and called the police from her house to report what had happened. The driver was not charged for a hit and run, also known as fleeing the scene of an accident. She claimed that she was threatened by an onlooker and fled in fear. A South Carolina regulation, enacted before the widespread availability of cell phones, states that if a driver is involved in a wreck resulting in fatality or injury, they may leave the scene temporarily to report the accident to the police and medical providers.

Section 56-5-1210 of South Carolina law was enacted in 2004, sponsored by Sen. Brad Hutto. There is little indication that there was any significant debate in the legislature when this bill was put up for consideration nearly 15 years ago. Many note that the use of the term “temporarily” in the regulation is significant and critical. This language implies that a driver cannot leave the scene of an accident, and that they must return.

Opposing Views

Some legal scholars have interpreted the regulation differently, such that one can only leave the scene of an accident if they do not have a cell phone or means to contact authorities, and they must return to the scene. Some factors to consider in determining if a violation of the law has occurred include whether the person has a cell phone that is charged and functional, the length of time it took them to report the accident, and whether the driver has good cause for not returning to the scene.

One major problem with the regulation is when it comes to drunk drivers.  If a drunk driver caused an accident, they could potentially drive home and not return to the scene until their Blood Alcohol Content is lowered or claim that they did not take a drink until after the accident.

A corollary law, S.C. statute 56-5-1230, states that the driver involved in hitting a person or causing damage to their car must render assistance.  Presumably this statue would be controlling because it is more specific. However, what if the driver gets out of their car, sees an injured person, but cannot render assistance without leaving the scene to call authorities?  These questions remain unresolved under the law.

Columbia Car Accident Lawyers at Chappell Smith & Arden, P.A. Represent Victims of Hit and Run Accidents

If you have been injured in any type of car wreck, our Columbia car accident lawyers at Chappell Smith & Arden, P.A. will fight to obtain the full amount of compensation you deserve so that you can focus on what matters most; your health, your family, and your recovery. To schedule a consultation, call us today at (803) 929-3600 or contact us online. With six office locations throughout South Carolina, we provide the highest quality of legal services to injured accident victims. Let us help you start building your best case today.

We represent clients in Columbia, Alken, Camden, Sumter, Orangeburg, Greenville, Florence, Beaufort, Irmo, Spartanburg, Myrtle Beach, Hilton Head Island, West Columbia, Rock Hill, Charleston, Lexington, Winnsboro, Summerville, and throughout the counties of Lexington County, Richland County, Sumtner County, Charleston County, Aiken County, Florence County, Lancaster County, York County, Spartenburg County, Orangebury County, Kershaw County, and Newberry County.

Legal Team: Firm News Update

The partners, associates, and staff of Chappell Smith & Arden, P.A. are pleased to share some recent firm news. Our team of personal injury lawyers in South Carolina are experienced in and passionate about protecting the rights of our clients. We are proud to go above and beyond to ensure we provide our clients with the highest standard of legal representation they need to make the best recovery possible.

Hugh McAngus

South Carolina Personal Injury Lawyers provide a firm news update on their attorneys. Attorney Hugh McAngus recently spoke at a Southern Trial Lawyers Association (STLA) event. The mission of this esteemed association is to promote fellowship, learning, and networking among trial lawyers throughout the 13 southern states.

In July, Mr. McAngus will speak at the American Association for Justice (AAJ) Convention on “Dealing with Defense Pretrial and Trial Tactics in Trucking” cases. The AAJ is dedicated to promoting legal accountability and safety.

Mr. McAngus also recently published an article in the Journal of Trucking Litigation. His experience in this field of law is unparalleled.

 

Graham Newman

South Carolina Personal Injury Lawyers provide a firm news update on their attorneys. Attorney Graham Newman recently authored an article that will soon appear in the SCAJ Justice Bulletin, the official bulletin of the South Carolina Association for Justice. The SCAJ advocates for fairness under the law.

Mr. Newman also recently taught a Trial by Jury class at the University of South Carolina School of Law. Mark Arden was invited to speak on the topic of Workers Compensation during one session.

Our personal injury lawyers in South Carolina at Chappell Smith & Arden, P.A. can be reached at 803-929-3600 or 800-531-9780 for additional information or for a free consultation. You can also learn more about our firm online. Our offices are conveniently located throughout South Carolina.

We serve clients in Columbia, Alken, Camden, Sumter, Orangeburg, Greenville, Florence, Beaufort, Irmo, Spartanburg, Myrtle Beach, Hilton Head Island, West Columbia, Rock Hill, Charleston, Lexington, Winnsboro, Summerville, and throughout the counties of Lexington County, Richland County, Sumtner County, Charleston County, Aiken County, Florence County, Lancaster County, York County, Spartenburg County, Orangebury County, Kershaw County, and Newberry County.

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