Mesothelioma Lawyers Are there to Protect the Rights of Victims Exposed to Asbestos

Mesothelioma Lawyers Are there to Protect the Rights of Victims Exposed to Asbestos

Millions of people in the United States go to work or move about every day without realizing the danger that they put their lives in. Despite the fact that asbestos is the number one cause of people developing mesothelioma, the United States has failed to pass legislation that would ban the use of the mineral in products. Mesothelioma is one of the most dangerous forms of cancer on the planet. 

Greater than 3,000 people in the United States are stricken with Mesothelioma each year. Due to the nature of the disease, and how quickly it can metastasize, it is very important that people start treatment for their cancer as soon as possible. Anyone who believes that they were exposed to asbestos on their job, or through the use of products containing the substance, should seek the advice of an mesothelioma lawyer as soon as possible.

A lack of awareness

Most people in America know how dangerous asbestos is, however many are surprised to learn that asbestos is contained in many of the products they use. Scientists have conducted countless studies that revealed exposure to asbestos, even in very small amounts could cause a person to develop mesothelioma. People who work in industries like construction, roofing, shipyards, and automobile repair have a greater risk of being exposed to asbestos than people who work in other industries. Firefighters are also at high risk for exposure to asbestos,

In the Oddest Places

It is important to note that asbestos is still very much a part of American everyday life. Asbestos is still being used in insulation for example. At least 1% of the materials used to help regulate the temperature in buildings and homes is made of asbestos. Because asbestos can withstand an incredible amount of heat, car parts like clutches, pipes, gaskets, and brake pads are often made with the mineral. 

When people think about fire safety products, they make the assumption that the products are safe to use. Many fireproof products are made with asbestos fibers, because they repel fire. When choosing fire safety products for their homes, people should research and do their due diligence before selecting items like fireproof coating, fire curtains and fire blankets. 

If there is an emergency at home or in the workplace, and fire safety items need to be used, it is important for people to remember that heat could disperse particles of asbestos into the air. Users of these types of products should be mindful of this fact, and protect their noses and mouths when these products are in use. Asbestos is also found in potting soil, fertilizer, laboratory equipment, talcum powder and in some construction materials like floor tiles and plaster.

Get Help Right Away

Anyone who has been diagnosed with mesothelioma, and believes they were exposed to products containing asbestos at work, home or in their community need to secure the services of a mesothelioma lawyer as soon as they can. An attorney can help make sure that people who have been diagnosed with mesothelioma through asbestos exposures get the protection and help they need. Businesses and involved in these types of lawsuits have lawyers on retainer to ensure they have the best legal representation possible. A mesotheiloma lawyer is there to even the playing field.

How to Find the Right Auto Insurance Policy for Your Needs

How to Find the Right Auto Insurance Policy for Your Needs

When it comes to finding auto insurance policies for your family, it’s imperative to understand what you’re doing. As an informed buyer, you’re far more likely to get the right policy at the right rate.

5 Things You Need to Know

Car insurance doesn’t have to be a confounding topic. With some willingness to learn the ropes and understand what’s really going on behind the scenes, you can find the perfect auto insurance policy for your needs. Here are a few recommendations:

1. Know What Your State Requires

Every state has its own laws regarding how much insurance drivers are legally required to carry with their vehicle.

In total, there are five types of coverage that a state can mandate: bodily injury (BI), property damage (PD), uninsured/underinsured bodily injury (UIM BI), uninsured/underinsured property damage (UIM PD), and personal injury protection (PIP). Some states only require BI and PD, while others require all five. Likewise, every state has its own minimum coverage.

There are only a few states that don’t require insurance. In New Hampshire, drivers only have to prove their ability to pay for damage in a car accident. (However, the state can require drivers to get minimum coverage after a major violation, like a DUI.) In Virginia, residents can pay an uninsured motorist fee of $500 per year instead of getting insurance. And in states like Mississippi, Alabama, and Alaska, drivers can post a cash deposit or bond equal to the minimum car insurance amount if they don’t want to purchase car insurance.

2. Understand How Rates Work

Car insurance rates are determined by two major factors: underwriting and rating.

Every insurance company assigns a risk value to each applicant. Based on the results, a rating is assigned and a price is given that reflects the cost the insurer believes it’s taking on for a potential claim. Each carrier’s rates are impacted by a proprietary blend of factors, which may include any or all of the following:

  • Driving record
  • Location
  • Age and gender
  • Marital status
  • Vehicle (make and model)
  • Vehicle use (higher mileage means more risk)
  • Prior insurance coverage (missed payments, canceled policies, etc.)

Because each insurance company’s underwriting process and risk models are unique, you’ll find that rates vary from one carrier and policy to the next.

3. Know Which Discounts You Qualify For

Insurance companies offer discounts to customers as incentives for good behavior and loyalty. Being aware of these discounts and which ones you could potentially qualify for will make you a more informed driver.

Examples of discounts include multiple vehicle, home and auto bundles, driver education courses, anti-theft devices, safety devices, anti-lock brakes, and low mileage. The more of these you layer together, the better your rates will be.

4. Shop Around for Rates

Car insurance rates can vary significantly from one company to the next. If you put your focus on one insurance company and never consider the alternatives, you could end up paying more than you should for basic coverage.

As a recommendation, consider doing an annual rate check where you get at least three quotes from different companies to see if there’s a way to save money. You’ll have to be the judge of when it makes sense to change policies, but knowing the rates keeps you informed as to what the market is like at any given point in time.

5. Figure Out Your Own Risk Tolerance

You can significantly increase or reduce the cost of your auto insurance policy by playing around with different deductibles. One recommendation is to figure out how much you’re comfortable spending out of pocket in an accident. Based on this number, you can figure out your own personal risk tolerance.

If you have adequate financial resources and are able to pay a larger deductible without compromising your financial situation, you might be willing to raise the deductible and “self-insure” part of the risk. But if a large deductible would sink your finances, it’s better to pay a few bucks more every month for lower risk. Massage the numbers to see what works!

Don’t Rush the Process

When shopping for auto insurance, it’s important that you take your time and do the proper due diligence. Rushing through the process could lead you to make a premature decision that leaves you paying more and/or getting less coverage than you need. Be disciplined and intentional!

How Much Money Can You Get in a Trucking Accident Settlement?

How Much Money Can You Get in a Trucking Accident Settlement?

Truck crashes happen every day. When a tractor-trailer hits your vehicle, you usually face severe injuries that could change your life forever. But most people aren’t equipped financially to handle the burden, so they rely on a truck accident settlement to take care of their health and financial needs.

Anyone suffering severe tractor-trailer crash injuries wants to know what they can expect in a settlement. There’s no average settlement for such severe accidents, but there are a few things that affect how much you get in the bank for your injuries.

Here’s more information to help you understand what your accident case could be worth. Remember to run your case by a truck crash attorney to get more information. They usually don’t charge for the consultation, so you don’t have anything to lose.

Truck Crash Settlement Factors

A truck accident case involves personal injury. Your attorney must demonstrate the driver’s or company’s negligence to receive money for your injuries and damages. Negligence happens when a person or entity acts in an unreasonable way that causes someone else losses. The losses could involve money, health, or both. But if you don’t prove negligence, your case vanishes.

Getting a rough number for your possible settlement involves a solid understanding of the following aspects:

Injury Severity

Severe truck accident injuries that involve high medical bills and surgery always get more settlement dollars. Bad injuries, such as broken bones, internal injuries, and head trauma, will get more sympathy from a potential jury.

The insurance company knows juries award more money to seriously injured people. They’re also more sympathetic to those who are hurt by corporate negligence. The insurance adjuster is more likely to offer a higher settlement because they know that they could pay much more if it goes to court.

Medical Costs

The more severe your injuries, the more medical care you need. Most insurance companies focus on your medical care costs to arrive at a possible settlement figure.

For example, if you shatter your hip in the accident, you’ll probably need surgery and a hospital stay. Plus, you’ll have physical therapy for weeks or months after surgery. This type of care usually involves tens of thousands of dollars in medical bills. This will be a significant driver of a truck accident settlement.

But there are a few exceptions. Insurance companies value medical care from a doctor or surgeon much more than chiropractors or acupuncturists. If you claim $10,000 in chiropractor bills, the insurance company may view that skeptically. But $10,000 in hospital costs will be valued higher.

Lost Earnings

Another massive factor in a truck accident settlement is how much work time you lose. If you’re out of work for three months because of a herniated disc, you’re probably going to get a more significant settlement than if you lose a week of work for a strained wrist.

An attorney will also receive more lost earnings than a marketing specialist because they earn more per pay period.

If you’re unemployed, you’re mostly out of luck; the insurance company won’t pay you for lost work time.

Pain and Suffering

Truck crash victims with a lot of pain and suffering get more compensation. For instance, you’ll have more pain and suffering with a broken kneecap than a sprained wrist.

But how do you prove pain and suffering? Documentation is critical. Your doctor needs to confirm that your injuries cause so much pain and suffering. It also helps if you keep a ‘pain journal’ that describes how much your injuries hurt and affect your life.

Also, insurance companies have a good idea of how much various injuries hurt. They see these cases every day.

Of course, pain and suffering are still somewhat subjective. This area is open to negotiation, and it’s up to your attorney to make a convincing argument for more money.

These factors will influence your potential truck accident settlement. Keep in mind that all cases are different, and your lawyer is the best one to give you a possible settlement range for your specific injuries and circumstances.

The Top Methods for Hair Loss Prevention

The Top Methods for Hair Loss Prevention

Nothing makes you look older than your age quite like premature hair loss. But just because your hair is thinning right now doesn’t mean you have to live with balding. You have more options than you realize.

Top Causes of Hair Loss

We’re all experiencing hair loss on a daily basis. In fact, the average person loses somewhere in the neighborhood of 50 to 100 hairs per day. But – and this is the key – the average person is also re-growing the same (or more) number of hairs per day. For individuals who are balding, this isn’t the case.

Hair loss is essentially the process of losing more hairs than you grow. This leads to bald spots and thinning over time. And while it’s typically a combination of factors, some of the top causes include:

  • Androgenetic alopecia. This is basically another term for male (or female) pattern baldness. This tends to be genetic and is defined by thinning/balding on the crown of the head and temple areas.
  • Telogen effluvium. This (usually) temporary condition can be brought on by factors like extreme stress, childbirth, surgery, or certain medications. It causes hair to fall out in handfuls and leads to extreme patchiness.
  • Pregnancy. The decrease in estrogen levels immediately after birth can lead to short-term hair loss in women. This usually resolves itself within a few months.
  • Nutritional deficiencies. If you have a diet that’s low in certain vitamins, nutrients, and proteins, it can cause excessive hair shedding. (Blood tests can reveal if you have any deficiencies.)

Top Methods for Preventing Hair Loss

Once hair loss begins, it’s important to address it. The longer you wait, the more likely that the effects will become permanent and/or require extensive treatment to correct. Here are a few methods that are known to prevent further hair loss by restoring your scalp’s health and vitality.

1. Proper Diet and Nutrition

Proper hair growth depends on proper nutrition. The scalp is essentially the foundation of healthy hair. In order to encourage healthy growth, you must consume a well-balanced diet that’s full of essential vitamins and nutrients.

A diet that’s high in vitamin A, vitamin E, and vitamin B is a good start. You also need to consume plenty of biotin and protein. Lean meats, fish, and soy are great for the latter.

2. Oral Supplements

The right blend of oral supplements can help, too. If you find that your diet isn’t providing sufficient amounts, try ginseng, saw palmetto, biotin, and a multivitamin. A good DHT blocker can help as well.

3. Low Level Laser Therapy

Low level laser therapy (LLLT) is an FDA approved technique that uses medical-grade laser diodes to emit low level light and increase circulation and blood flow in the scalp. Laser caps are the most common option, as they allow you to get treatment from the comfort of your own home. But do laser caps work?

While results certainly vary, science has shown that laser caps do work for most people. They’re most effective in helping people with mild to moderate hair loss re-grow thicker hair. (Though the results often take as long as 60 to 180 days to take full effect.) If you’re looking for an overnight method, this isn’t it. But if you’re willing to do consistent half-hour treatments over a period of months, you’ll almost certainly see results.

4. Proper Hair Care

Smart hair care can significantly reduce your chances of experiencing excessive hair loss. Avoid overwashing and be smart about how you dry and style your hair after getting out of the shower.

“When hair is wet, it is in its weakest state. So avoid brushing wet hair because the chances of hair loss increases,” health blogger Sobiya Moghul writes. “But if you must comb wet hair, use a very wide-toothed comb. Also avoid brushing hair too frequently as doing so can injure hair and increase loss.”

If you have tangles in your hair, try using your fingers to gently untangle. This is a much safer option when compared to combs and brushes that have a tendency to pull hairs out of the scalp.

Live Healthy, Be Happy

Some hair loss is to be expected. It’s a natural part of the aging process and can’t always be prevented. However, it is usually possible to delay or minimize hair loss. And in some cases, a targeted strategy can prevent it altogether. Hopefully this article has given you some ideas to work with. When in doubt, consult with your doctor for guidance on how to proceed.

Making Sense Of Mortgages: How To Evaluate Your Loan Offer

Making Sense Of Mortgages: How To Evaluate Your Loan Offer

Buying a home is an exciting undertaking, but it can also be immensely overwhelming, especially if it’s your first time going through the process. In particular, applying for – and interpreting – a mortgage can be intimidating, not least of all because it can feel like a referendum on your financial success. You hand over information on your savings, investments, earnings and assets, and then the banks offer up a decision. But how do you know if it’s a good offer?

If you’re trying to make sense of the home loan you’ve been offered, there are a number of factors you’ll want to look at. By honing in on these 3 elements, you can get a sense of whether this offer will put you on the path to successful home ownership, or drive you into debt.

Loan Total

When you receive your mortgage offer, two numbers carry the most importance – the loan total and the interest rate, the first of which is fairly easy to make sense of. You’ll need a loan that covers at least the cost of the property less your down payment. If you’re purchasing a home in a competitive area, this may be a substantial loan all on its own. On the other hand, if you’re purchasing a fixer upper in a less expensive part of town, you might not need as large of a base loan, but you might want to tack on some extra funds for repairs.

Reading The Rate

After the total loan, the other important number on your mortgage is the interest rate. Recently, the market has been flooded with ultra-low interest rate loans in response to the global financial crisis. This is, at least in theory, good news for borrowers since it could minimize how much they pay in interest over the long-term. The only applies if that low-rate is attached to a fixed-rate loan, though. Otherwise, you could end up with a different loan rate down the line.

Comparison Strategies

The mortgage total and interest rate are both critical to deciding whether a particular mortgage offer is right for you, but they aren’t the only factors. To get a better sense of your loan options, you may want to apply for a mortgage online where you can more easily compare different loans side-by-side. This kind of comparison is critical because, though you can easily compare the total loan amount and interest rate without any special tools, it can be harder to capture details like monthly or annual fees across multiple documents. Online comparison sites distill this information, which can help you make sense of all the details.

When considering a mortgage, the initial numbers are critical. You want a loan with favorable terms so that, for example, if interest rates hit an upward trend for a few years, you aren’t stuck with a terrible loan that you wish you could refinance. Though refinancing your mortgage may be an option down the line, you don’t want to put yourself in a position where refinancing feels like your only option. Refinancing should be an upgrade, not a financial survival tactic – and when you know how to evaluate your mortgage from the start, it will be.

What It Takes to Digitally Transform a Business

What It Takes to Digitally Transform a Business

Most new businesses have the benefit of starting from scratch with fully digital processes. They’ll lay the groundwork for the business with critical apps and other technology that can heighten productivity, save on costs, and maintain environmental sustainability.

But for businesses that have operated for years, or even decades with paper records and manual processes, the idea of converting to a digital environment can be intimidating. Many digital transformation attempts go wrong, so if you want to be successful, you need to understand exactly what it takes to make such a program work.

What Is a Digital Transformation?

First, you need to understand what it means to “digitize” your work, or digitally transform your organization. This can mean different things to different people, but digital transformation occurs whenever you take a formerly manual or paper-based process and upgrade it so it can be done with digital tools.

For example, you might convert your paper records in filing cabinets into digital records, stored in an online database. You might turn a manual, paper-based inventorying process into something completed with digital scanners.

In some cases, a business may attempt to fully digitally transform itself; every operation, from the top down, must change in some way. These large-scale efforts are often intensive and expensive, but they have the power to save an organization a ton of money and improve productivity indefinitely.

When you get a management software, you can better track contract compliance, contract amendments, KPIs, company performance, among many others. By simply digitizing your system, you have access to information you didn’t have before. You can break, renew, and revise contacts according to the data on your program. A digital transformation may not seem necessary now, but that is where the industry is headed. If you fail to grasp the right time to adapt, it does not bode well for your organization.

Keys to Success in Digital Transformation

There are several important fundamentals to ensure your digital transformation is a success, including:

  • A clear vision. First, you need to have a clear vision of what you’re trying to achieve. Merely adopting the “digital is better” mentality isn’t enough. You have to know which products and services are currently available, and understand exactly how they’re going to make your organization “better.” You can dig into specifics later, but you should have a clear overarching vision of how your organization will improve from the start.
  • Documented goals, tasks, and subtasks. From there, you’ll need to formally document as much of your plan as possible. You’ll need high-level goals and sub-goals to achieve, complete with a timeline on when to achieve them. You’ll also need to break this digital transformation project down in terms of tasks and subtasks. Who will be responsible for achieving these? When must they be complete?
  • Leadership and accountability. It’s important for your digital transformation to have a clear leader and accountability throughout the team. Ideally, one point person will be in charge of executing the full digital transformation; it’s their job to assign tasks and ensure deadlines get met. Along the way, various individuals will be assigned responsibilities and tasks, and it’s important to instill accountability in them so they’re motivated to finish their work.
  • Access to the right tools. It should go without saying that your digital transformation success is largely dependent on the types of tools you’re using for the transformation. With bad hardware, bad software, or an incomplete set of tools, your digital transformation simply won’t work. It’s on you to research what types of tools your organization needs, which specific products are the best in each category, and how those products can all work together.
  • Employee unity. Employees often resist change, for the same reasons we all resist change in various areas of our lives. However, if your digital transformation is going to be successful, your employees all need to be on board. Spend some time educating your employees on the importance of digital transformation, and assuage the concerns of people who are reluctant to adapt.
  • Appropriate timing. It’s not a good idea to start a digital transformation in the middle of your busiest season. Timing your transformation will be challenging, but it’s an important consideration to bear in mind.
  • Coordinated changeovers. Similarly, it’s important to coordinate changeovers from old systems to new systems. If some of your team members start using a digital system on Monday, but others are still using a paper-based or manual method on Wednesday, you’ll struggle to reconcile the differences. Make sure all your official “launch” dates are clear and understood—and set a firm expiration date for now-obsolete processes.
  • Room for flexibility. Having a solid, consistent plan for how you’re going to operate digitally in the future is good, but you also need room for flexibility. Your best-laid plans aren’t always going to work out as intended, and new ideas for improvement will constantly emerge. Prepare to adapt as you roll out your new systems.

Planning and executing a digital transformation is harder than it first seems, especially for a large organization. But with the right goals, plenty of proactive critical thinking, and a supportive team to help you along the way, you can greatly improve your organization with minimal downtime or obstacles.

5 Smart Tips and Tactics for Spending Less on Your Next Car

5 Smart Tips and Tactics for Spending Less on Your Next Car

Buying a car can be stressful, but it doesn’t have to be outrageously expensive. With the right strategies, you can lower the cost, get a better deal, and spend less on your monthly payments. Sound good? Read on!

5 Tips for Spending Less on Your Next Car

If you’re like the average person, a house is the most expensive purchase you’ll ever make. But vehicles come in a close second. Thankfully, there are ample opportunities to save. Here are a few highly recommended suggestions:

1. Set Your Budget

Start by asking yourself two questions:

  • How much can I spend?
  • How much do I want to spend?

For some people, the answer to these questions is the same. But if you want to make a fiscally sound decision, you should probably spend less than you can afford to pay.

Once you set your budget, it’s important that you stick to this budget. (And it’s also wise to remember that you don’t have to max out your budget. If you know you can afford to spend $20,000 on a car, paying $17,000 is even better.)

2. Know Where to Find Deals

Sourcing the right deal is half the battle. The same vehicle can cost 15 to 20 percent less than it does at another dealership, but you have to know where to look.

Buying from a private party will almost always yield a lower price. (No added fees and expenses.) And if you’re in a state with high property tax rates, buying across state lines could save you a few hundred to several thousand dollars.

3. Use This Little-Known Email Trick

Tom Niejadlik is in the car business. He’s spent more than 15 years in car showrooms, negotiating with buyers, and mastering the ins and outs of the business. And while he’s seen a variety of negotiation tactics and techniques over this time, there’s one method he says is most effective right now; it involves sending one simple email.

You can read about the process in this article, but here’s the gist of the methodology:

  • Do your research and find out the fair market price for the type of car you’re interested in.
  • Locate seven to 10 dealerships in your region that have the car you’re looking for.
  • Send an email and visibly CC a salesperson from each dealership on the message.
  • In your email, include the fact that you’ve selected a vehicle you want to buy, have already test driven it, and are ready to buy. Explain any options that you must have and that you’re aware of all costs associated with these various options. You should also mention that you’re pre-approved for financing, but would prefer to finance through the seller.
  • Give the dealers 24 hours to respond with their best offer and promise to provide a credit card deposit over the phone.

Dealers hate emails like this, but many will bite. And the best part about it is that you’re showing the dealers they have competition. Some will ignore your email, but you should get at least three to five responses. You can then use these deals as leverage to negotiate even lower offers.

4. Secure a Low Interest Loan

The purchase price of the vehicle is the first major element you need to flesh out. However, it’s also imperative that you secure the lowest car loan rate possible. This requires shopping around online and comparing various rates from different lenders.

5. Buy Used Over New

Buying a new vehicle might seem attractive when you’re on a test drive and you find yourself intoxicated by that new car smell, but it’s rarely a smart choice. New cars depreciate rapidly in the first year – losing more than 20 percent in the first year alone. Why not buy a pre-owned vehicle with low mileage and let someone else take that hit?

Be an Intentional Car Buyer

Lazy car buyers get taken for a ride every single time (this can also apply if you consider renting a car as well). Not only do lazy buyers pay too much for their vehicles, but they also overpay on high-interest loans. If you want to spend less money, you have to become an intentional car buyer. This means carefully weighing the details and paying attention to every little aspect (including budgeting, deal sourcing, financing, etc.). Hopefully this article has provided you with a good starting point to begin your search.

3 Professionals That Can Help Win Your Car Accident Case

3 Professionals That Can Help Win Your Car Accident Case

So you’ve just been in a car accident. It’s the sort of thing that happens to just about everyone at least once in their lives, but particularly if you’ve been in a serious accident, the aftermath can be frightening and leave you with a lot of questions about what to do next. Seeking medical care is a top priority, as is contacting your insurance and finding an attorney. For those car accident victims hoping for an optimal legal outcome, though, seeking out additional expert help beyond these core players can make a big difference.

Who do you want supporting your case when you enter the courtroom? These 3 types of consultants can all offer valuable information, helping you claim victory and collect the damages you deserve.

Industry Standards

In any given case, your lawyer will determine what experts to consult in support of your case, but at the Gainesville-based law firm Fine, Farkash, and Parlapiano, PA, the team often brings on accident reconstruction experts, economists, care planners, and other medical experts when litigating car accident cases. As a group, this set of experts is uniquely positioned to identify factors ranging from fault to loss of income and long-term care needs. While your lawyers can identify key areas of concern, they don’t have the specialist knowledge and authority to argue these issues to juries and insurance companies on their own.

Reconstructing The Scene

One of the most valuable expert groups in any car accident case is the accident reconstruction specialist, a role that is essentially self-explanatory. The question many people have about accident reconstruction experts, though, is how important are they? After all, with video cameras just about everywhere these days, what can these experts show that cameras can’t?

Traffic reconstruction experts provide valuable information based on visits to the accident scene, evaluation of the damage done to the vehicles, study of debris and tire tracks, and study of surveillance video and medical and police records. There really aren’t other experts besides your lawyer who gets to see all of these pieces in one place. Their knowledge of car accident mechanics and ability to synthesize this information brings a critical, comprehensive view of the event into the courtroom.

Effective Economists

Why would an economist consult on a car accident case? It may seem like an odd fit, but if you want to get the maximum financial settlement, you want a labor economist on your side. That’s because a labor economist can testify to your earning capacity, consider how future industry changes and market growth could impact your future earnings, and – most importantly – what financial losses any accident-related injuries might have caused. Those are losses you can recover.

The Medical Side

Anyone familiar with the use of expert witnesses in car accident cases can tell you that medical evaluation is a standard part of any car accident case, but you need more than just a doctor to evaluate your injuries. Rather, your lawyer can also bring on a medical expert with a specialization in long-term care planning. If you’ve been seriously injured in a car accident, you may need special care, therapies, adaptive equipment, or changes to your home, and that’s where these specialists come in. Not only can they assess your medical needs, but they can also estimate the costs of appropriate care.

While your lawyer is the point person for all parts of your car accident case, additional experts play a critical role in your lawsuit’s overall success. By bringing together their combined expertise, you provide the court and the insurance companies all the information they need to find in your favor.

Everything You Need to Know About Aquamarine

Everything You Need to Know About Aquamarine

Aquamarine has long been a popular choice for rings and other forms of jewelry, and it’s seeing a resurgence in popularity. Interested buyers are shopping for aquamarine engagement rings, and fashion-conscious consumers are integrating more aquamarine jewelry into their daily attire.

But what is aquamarine, and what should you know about it before you buy it?

What Is Aquamarine?

First, let’s talk about the physics of aquamarine as a gemstone. It’s technically part of the beryl family of minerals, occurring as a light blue or cyan shade. There’s also a deep blue variety that’s sometimes called maxixe.

Aquamarine occurs in most places that yield beryl in general, with Colombia leading international production; it can also be found in the Big Horn Mountains of Wyoming and in the Sawatch Range of central Colorado. Generally speaking, the quality of aquamarine is determined based on its color and richness.

Symbolism and History

Aquamarine has a rich symbolism to support its use as a gemstone. In some circles, aquamarine is believed to embody the purity of clear water, and deep relaxation. It’s also associated with calmness, cleansing, and letting go. Historically, aquamarine was believed to be valued by mermaids—which is why many sailors wore or carried aquamarine as a totem of protection and good fortune. Still today, aquamarine is heavily associated with the sea.

Traditionally, aquamarine is also the birthstone of people born in March. In this context, aquamarine is believed to represent youth, health, and hope, and is heavily associated with spring.

How to Buy Aquamarine

If you’re interested in buying aquamarine rings or other forms of jewelry, there are a few factors worth your consideration.

For starters, you can review aquamarine stones with the four “C’s,” much like you could with a diamond:

  • Color. For aquamarine, the ideal color is something dark blue to slightly greenish blue, with a moderate intensity that still allows light to penetrate. That said, your personal preference may vary, and there’s a fairly wide spectrum of color to choose from in aquamarine.
  • Clarity. Inclusions in your aquamarine should be rare, with good transparency. Related gemstones, like emerald, frequently tolerate inclusions; however, aquamarine should be as clear as possible. You may be able to find aquamarine with a milky discoloration for a discount, if you don’t mind its appearance.
  • Cut. Aquamarine is a workable stone, so you’ll be able to see it in a variety of shapes, sizes, and styles. That said, aquamarine is most commonly cut to resemble emeralds, or as round cuts. If you’re looking for something unique, you can look for vintage aquamarine rings or customize your own design.
  • Carat weight. Aquamarine is rare, but not as rare as the diamond. Accordingly, you may be able to find gems of 25 carats or more. Generally speaking, the larger the carat weight, the deeper the color is going to be; gems under five carats tend to be pale, while bigger gems will offer a richer color.

Be on the lookout for scams and “fake” aquamarine. Because the color and transparency can be readily imitated, unscrupulous sellers may be inclined to try and sell you something false. Real, fine aquamarine is both rare and expensive, so expect to pay a high amount for a quality gemstone.

Additionally, you’ll notice that aquamarine and blue topaz have a similar color and structure. However, blue topaz is much less expensive. Blue topaz is less expensive, because it’s common and easy to produce; you can treat colorless topaz with radiation to get this color. Some aquamarine is similarly treated to enhance its blue color, but it’s still much rarer and more collectable; it’s also considered finer and richer in color.

Some rings may come with side stones, meant to complement the center stone. If these stones are all aquamarine, be prepared for a slight color mismatch. Remember, the richness of the aquamarine’s color will deepen as it increases in size, so smaller stones may end up looking paler by comparison.

Depending on the jeweler where you purchase your piece, you may be able to learn the origins of the aquamarine stone; however, most people do not take the origin of the stone into consideration. An aquamarine stone with the same color, clarity, cut, and carat weight will be priced the same regardless of where it is originally found.

Reviewing Aquamarine

While there are some “standard” ways to evaluate aquamarine, some of your decision will boil down to personal preference; you may prefer a paler or deeper color, or a shade that’s pure blue or closer to green. The best way to make your aquamarine buying decision is to review as many stones as possible, taking their prices into consideration as well, so you can learn and identify your wants.

Here’s What to Do If You’re a Victim of Medical Malpractice

Here’s What to Do If You’re a Victim of Medical Malpractice

When an employee messes up your order at a fast food restaurant, it’s frustrating, but understandable. When a medical professional makes a mistake, it’s unacceptable. Research from Johns Hopkins University found that “10 percent of all U.S. deaths are now due to medical error.” Their research also found that it’s the third highest cause of death, and many cases are not recognized as such.

Medical professionals need to be held accountable for their mistakes, so if you suspect that you or someone you love has been the victim of medical malpractice, it’s important to take the right steps to rectify the situation.

Here’s what you can and should do.

Call an Attorney

The very first step before you approach the hospital about the problem should be to call your attorney. You don’t want to contact the hospital so that they build up their defenses before you have a case. Let your attorney do the heavy lifting and contact the hospital for you.

An attorney is absolutely essential in a medical malpractice case. “Unlike many other forms of negligence, a medical malpractice case involves a highly complex set of standards,” explain the attorneys at Serious Injury Law Group in Montgomery, AL. “In general, you must prove the applicable standard of care. You also must show that the health care professional failed to meet that standard of care. This can be challenging. The standard of care is somewhat subjective and requires other similarly licensed and trained health care providers to testify about what went wrong.”

Speaking with an attorney enables you to build up your case and perform the associated steps for pressing charges in the correct order.

Seek a Second Opinion

Whether a mistake is obvious or it’s simply suspicious, you’ll want a second opinion from a qualified medical professional to present as evidence in court. They’ll need to assess the mistake to determine whether or not it could have been prevented.

Seek a top-rated specialist to corroborate your claims. They’ll want to review your medical records, perform tests, and conduct background research before giving you a diagnosis and identifying any medical errors. The second doctor will also do the best they can to help you heal.

Write Everything Down

Keep a detailed record of everything you’ve gone through, the pain you’re experiencing, and what’s happening day to day. This may come in handy during the proceedings.

According to, a “personal diary could arguably contain relevant evidence. Legally, under the rules of evidence and discovery, a party is entitled to inspect and copy any and all documents that could potentially lead to the discovery of useful evidence to support their case or position. While a diary is going to be considered hearsay, there are numerous exceptions to hearsay rules that would allow a diary’s use in court.”

The journal could be used to identify both physical and emotional symptoms related to an injury. It could also show the difference between life before and after the injury to demonstrate that a medical malpractice mistake was life-altering.

Don’t Blab About the Issue

Other than confiding in close confidants, legal professionals, or a new healthcare provider, it’s important to keep your suspicions to yourself. It can feel good to vent about it to everyone who will listen, but this could cause problems with your case down the road.

Most importantly, don’t talk about it online! The things you say on social media can be used against you in a court of law. If you really need to vent, find a trustworthy friend or family member who won’t blab.

Taking the proper steps during a medical malpractice claim is essential to helping you win your case. Most importantly, contact a medical malpractice attorney in your state who can facilitate your case and help you through this trying time.