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Chapmanville Legal Blog

Steps to take following a divorce

Many people who have gone through a divorce in West Virginia feel a sense of relief once they have the divorce decree in their hands. They are ready to start their new lives. There are certain steps a person needs to take in order to ensure that his or her life really can start fresh.

The first thing someone who took his or her ex-spouse's name when he or she got married should do is change his or her legal name. This will require making phone calls, filling out paperwork and taking other necessary steps in order to change his or her name on his or her driver's license, bank accounts, Social Security card, passport and any other place where his or her married name was used.

2019 inspection blitz scheduled from June 4 to June 6

People in West Virginia might be interested in learning about the upcoming three-day inspection blitz for commercial truck and bus drivers. The annual event is scheduled to take place from June 4 to June 6. During that time period, truck drivers and bus drivers will go undergo stepped-up inspections to ensure that they are in compliance, and their vehicles are properly maintained.

The Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance conducts the international annual event, and the focus of the blitz is to ensure that trucks and drivers that are traveling the nation's highways are complying with the regulations and laws that are in place. This year, the CVSA states that the main focus will be on steering and suspension systems, which are crucial when it comes to drivers being able to steer their vehicles as well as support heavy loads.

Survey into family member incarceration shocks researchers

Mass incarceration has become a hot-button political issue in West Virginia and around the country in recent years. Research into the consequences of placing millions of Americans behind bars makes for sobering reading, but the results of a study conducted by researchers from Cornell University have shocked even experts in the area. The Family History of Incarceration Survey was based on data gathered from 4,041 people by the University of Chicago, and it suggests that 45 percent of Americans have an incarcerated or formerly incarcerated child, spouse, sibling, parent or grandparent.

The Cornell researchers say that the figure, which is about twice as high as they expected, is the first accurate representation of family member incarceration in the United States. While the incarceration of a close family member was especially high among African-Americans, it was also quite common among Hispanics and whites. Siblings are the most likely family member to be in prison, according to the study.

Distracted driving fatality rates differ with cellphone laws

ValuePenguin has ranked the states based on their distracted driving fatality rate, finding that the laxity or strictness of each state's cellphone laws did much to influence the rates. West Virginia had one of the lower ones, ranking 43rd with .51 fatalities per 10 billion miles traveled between 2015 and 2017.

The national average was 1.49 fatalities per 10 billion miles traveled. Tennessee had a rate that was five times higher than the national average: 7.2 fatalities per 10 billion miles. It was followed by Delaware (3.28), Wyoming (3.22), Texas (3) and Montana (2.91). In all, there were more than 1,400 fatalities from 2015 to 2017 in accidents that involved at least one driver using a cellphone.

Personal injury considerations following a motor vehicle accident

Persons in Logan County and across West Virginia are injured in motor vehicle accidents every day. Thankfully, some of those mishaps yield minor consequences. Tragically, though, others are direct catalysts causing catastrophic injuries. In some sad cases, fatalities result.

A telling and unfortunate point concerning legions of crashes that victimize drivers and their passengers, motorcyclists, bicyclists and pedestrians is this: They flatly wouldn’t have occurred absent third-party negligence.

Top five causes of large truck accidents

When a large truck is in an accident, the results can be grisly. This is especially true if the accident involves a passenger car since a truck is usually 20 to 30 times larger than the average car. There are several common reasons why trucks get into accidents, from carrying heavy loads to difficulty controlling the vehicle on slippery or icy roads.

In 2017, 4,102 people were killed across the United States in accidents involving large trucks. 86 percent of the fatalities were occupants of a car, 17 percent were in a truck and 14 percent were pedestrians.

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Kuenzel Law, PLLC
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Chapmanville, WV 25508

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