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October 2014 Archives

A Report On Motor Vehicle Crash Injuries

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has completed a report on the cost of motor vehicle crashes nationwide. The report provides a summary of the financial damage caused by traffic accidents in 2012. While the report does an excellent job of showing the scope of the problem, it falls far short of providing a true understanding of the damage done by negligent drivers. Working with families that have lost loved ones because of distracted, drunk and unsafe drivers provides real insight into the "cost" of motor vehicle accidents.

Texting Behind The Wheel

Laws aimed at putting a stop to texting while driving swept the nation in recent years. In total, 44 states have enacted total bans on texting behind the wheel. Texting is viewed as a dangerous distraction for someone who should be focusing on safe driving. While distracted driving is a larger problem than just texting, the bans were correctly targeted to a growing trend that was causing car accidents. Unfortunately, the bans have not necessarily proven effective at actually preventing people from texting and driving.

Unpaid Internships And The Law

Businesses are always on the lookout for ways to save a buck. Thriftiness can quickly yield to labor law violations when employers decide to take advantage of workers. One way this happens in certain industries is to designate someone an unpaid intern and then treat them as employees. This is a violation of minimum wage laws. The unpaid internship program run by NBCUniversal was recently the subject of lawsuits alleging labor law violations. NBCUniversal agreed to pay $6.4 million to settle the claims brought under the Fair Labor Standards Act. Other entertainment companies have so far resisted settling these claims and are hoping for a favorable ruling in higher court.

Drowsy Driving And Non-Commercial Drivers

For many years, the research into fatigued driving focused largely on long-haul truck drivers. While the trucking industry is certainly one group impacted by drowsy driving, the problem extends far wider. Americans get nearly an hour less sleep per night than they did in 1965. The impact of that is felt in many areas of life, not least of all on the roads. More than 100,000 accidents per year are caused by drowsy drivers, including an estimated 5,000 to 6,000 fatal car and truck accidents.

New Jersey Employment and Civil Rights Attorney Discusses a Lawyer's Oath

When lawyers are admitted to practice in New Jersey, we swear an oath to uphold and defend the New Jersey Constitution and the laws of the State of New Jersey, as well as the U.S. Constitution and the laws of the United States. We become bound by the Rules of Professional Conduct, which provide the ethical standards to which we must adhere in our practice of the law. I, like most lawyers, take the oath that I made seriously. I, like most other lawyers, strive every day of my practice to honor that oath. And most of us, without needing to give much thought to it at all, remain within the bounds set by the Rules of Professional Conduct. Most of us understand that our profession is one that holds itself to a higher standard. Unfortunately, there are exceptions to every rule.

Understanding Sex Discrimination In New Jersey

The New Jersey Office of the Attorney General maintains civil rights fact sheets designed to help employees and employers understand their rights and responsibilities. The fact sheet discussing sex discrimination under New Jersey law gives several examples of what is unlawful conduct. In the most general terms, it is illegal under New Jersey law to treat someone differently or unfairly based on gender in the areas of employment, housing, places of public accommodation, contracting and credit. You cannot refuse to hire someone, promote someone, provide equal pay or any other job benefit based on gender. This absolutely applies to both men and women, though few would argue that the two groups are equally likely to be penalized based on gender.

Road Rage In New Jersey

While some people consider road rage and aggressive driving to be the same thing, true incidents of road rage are criminal offenses, not traffic offenses. Aggressive driving could be considered a precursor to road rage, but it is definitely a milder form of bad driving. Both road rage and aggressive driving greatly increase the chances of a serious car accident. They are an unacceptable and, by many accounts, increasingly frequent sight on New Jersey roadways. A recent study conducted by the Plymouth Rock Management Company shows just how common this problem is.

Drivers Not Independent Contractors According To Court

Designating a worker as an independent contractor, rather than an employee, can save a company a substantial amount of money. The Department of Labor has increased efforts to punish companies who use this designation improperly. The Internal Revenue Service, too, has sought to punish employers who misclassify workers as independent contractors. The practice has continued because the financial temptation to misclassify is simply too great.

The Cost Of Automation

The dream of self-driving cars will likely be realized in a matter of years. While public acceptance of autonomous vehicles might take decades, the technology already being tested is likely a safety improvement over the average human driver. As the scope and power of technology improves, is it possible that the capability of humans diminishes? Some critics are suggesting that the humanity is allowing computers to be responsible for too many important facets of everyday life. By turning over our traditional responsibilities, we may be losing the ability to do things for ourselves.

Women In Management Often Face Personal Criticism

The American workplace can be an unfair and hostile place. While the situation for women has improved in some ways, old prejudices and sexist behavior are still alive and well. Women in management have often encountered and overcome numerous challenges that their male counterparts have never faced. Gender discrimination is against New Jersey law and federal laws such as the Civil Rights Act and the Equal Pay Act. But discrimination is insidious and continues to express itself in a wide array of employment situations.

New Jersey Employment and Civil Rights Trial Attorney Discusses Governor Christie Veto of Bills Protecting Worker's Rights

Or. . .Governor Christie has a patchy record on protecting worker's rights.