If you are the victim of a battery, you can bring a civil claim to recover damages that is separate from any criminal action pending against the person who battered you. The impact of a battery can be extremely severe and painful for the victim even after any physical injuries have healed. Being the victim of physical abuse can lead to anxiety, trouble sleeping, and loss of enjoyment of life. At Maurer Law, our Charlotte personal injury lawyers are standing by to assist you with understanding your potential right to recovery after being the victim of a battery. There is no shame in standing up for yourself and asserting your rights under the law.

In a recent claim, the North Carolina Court of Appeal considered an appeal involving a battery claim. The facts of the case involved an altercation between the plaintiff and the defendant outside of a tool store. The men were neighbors. The defendant believed that the plaintiff made a complaint to the county that resulted in the county ordering the defendant’s parents to remove junk cars from their property. The defendant confronted the plaintiff in the tool store and accused him of being at the root of the issue and cursed at the plaintiff. The plaintiff cursed back, and the defendant later left the store. The men became involved in an altercation in the parking lot and the defendant fired one round at the plaintiff from his personal firearm. The plaintiff required surgery.

The plaintiff sought compensatory and punitive damages in the complaint that he filed. The defendant denied the allegations and argued that he shot the plaintiff out of self-defense and that the plaintiff was chasing him through the parking lot. The lower court entered a directed verdict in the plaintiff’s favor on the battery claim. The jury then returned a verdict awarding plaintiff $1 million in compensatory damages and $2 million in punitive damages. The defendant filed a motion for judgment notwithstanding the verdict and a motion for a new trial, which the lower court denied. The defendant appealed.

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Nursing home abuse can take many forms including physical abuse, financial abuse, emotional abuse, and sexual abuse. Regardless of how it happens, it is one of the most devastating and painful situations for the victim and his or her family. At Maurer Law, our seasoned team of Asheville nursing home abuse lawyers are standing by to assist your family with understanding its legal rights during this time. Although the local authorities may investigate the situation for criminal wrongdoing, the victim and/or his or her loved ones can bring a civil claim to recover compensation from the nursing home facility.

Recently, the North Carolina Court of Appeals considered a case in which an elderly resident at a nursing home facility with dementia alleged that one of the workers had exposed himself to her and engaged in inappropriate touching. The complaint alleged that a certified nursing assistant had assisted the resident back to her room after lunch and engaged in the sexual assault at that time. According to the nursing assistant, however, the aide had escorted the resident back to her room and spent one minute sitting next to the resident for the purpose of calming her down. The resident reported the incident to her personal aide, who arrived at the room soon after the nursing assistant left.

The facility submitted the required 24-hour initial report to the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services, Health Care Personal Registry and completed an investigation. It concluded that it was unable to substantiate the allegations due to the absence of any witnesses and the resident’s clinical diagnosis of dementia. A physician also determined that the resident lacked mental capacity. The nursing assistant was allowed to return to work and was assigned to a different hall. Other government agencies also investigated the claim and found it to be unsubstantiated.

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If you are injured in a car accident, the civil justice system allows you to bring a case against the person who caused your injuries to recover compensation. This sounds straightforward, but the process can be incredibly complex. There are countless procedural and substantive rules that apply to how the parties both provide evidence, communicate with the court and communicate with one another. At Maurer Law, our Charlotte car accident attorneys are available to provide competent and diligent legal advice to accident victims throughout the region. We will ensure that your case complies with all of the applicable rules and that you are treated fairly throughout the process.

In a recent case, the North Carolina Court of Appeal was asked to consider whether the procedures that a trial court used to grant the defendant’s motion for summary judgment were appropriate. The plaintiff filed a lawsuit against the defendant alleging that she was injured in a car accident as a result of the defendant’s negligent driving. The defendant responded by alleging that the plaintiff was contributorily negligent and filed a counterclaim against the plaintiff seeking damages.

Prior to the case coming up for trial, the court heard pretrial motions by both parties. At this time, the defendant noted that the plaintiff had not listed any expert medical witnesses in her disclosures. On this basis, the defendant moved to exclude the plaintiff from testifying about her injuries and medical bills unless she provided an expert witness who could provide an opinion about the injuries and their relation to the car accident. The plaintiff argued that she could testify based on her layperson experience undergoing treatment and that medical bills providing information about treatment and cost would be introduced into trial.

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If you are injured on another person’s property, you can bring a premises liability claim to recover compensation for your injuries and damages. North Carolina law places certain duties on landowners to ensure that different types of guests are protected from dangers on the property. The level of duty to warn or remedy a dangerous condition that a landowner owes to you depends on the reason that you are visiting the property. As such, premises liability cases can become complicated. The compassionate Charlotte premises liability lawyers at Maurer Law are available to discuss your potential case and how we can assist you.

Recently, the North Carolina Court of Appeal issued an opinion in a case involving a trip and fall injury. The plaintiff was attending a funeral at the defendant’s church. The defendant’s employees asked the plaintiff if he would be able to assist with carrying a casket as part of the ceremony. The plaintiff agreed. He followed the employees through the building, down a flight of steps, and out a back door. The plaintiff and three others carried the casket through the same doorway. The plaintiff was walking sideways to account for the casket when he tripped as he attempted to cross the threshold.

The trial court granted summary judgment for the defendant in the plaintiff’s lawsuit seeking damages. The trial court concluded that the nature of the danger, the steps leading in and out of the doorway, were open and obvious. It noted that the plaintiff had only moments before traveled through the same doorway when exiting the church to retrieve the casket. The plaintiff appealed and a divided panel of the Court of Appeals reversed. It concluded that there were genuine issues of fact regarding whether the nature of the steps leading into the building was an open and obvious danger.

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In a few short months, freshmen will be heading to college to begin a new chapter of their lives. For some, this may involve joining a fraternity or sorority. Although many of these organizations provide members with a sense of community, support, and other benefits during their college careers, some resort to dangerous and unnecessary hazing as part of the initiation process. Recent news reports have highlighted incidences of hazing being taken too far and even leading to student deaths. If you or your child were harmed as a result of hazing, contact the dedicated Charlotte personal injury lawyers at Maurer Law to learn more about your potential right to recovery.

Recently, a North Carolina Court of Appeal discussed whether a fraternity can be held liable for injuries that a student sustains as a result of hazing activities. The decedent in the case was a student who was pledged to a local chapter of a national fraternity. He died while staying as an overnight guest at the apartment of another fraternity member. The fraternity member testified that the pair had stayed up until 4 a.m. ingesting drugs and alcohol and that he went to class at 9 a.m. when he observed the decedent still sleeping in his apartment. He further testified that when he returned from class the decedent was pale, non-responsive, and appeared to have vomited.

Evidence in the record detailed some of the hazing activities that pledge class members allegedly underwent including being forced to drink alcohol to excess and physical violence. Text messages that the decedent had sent his friends suggested that he was undergoing serious mental stress as a result of the alleged hazing activities and pressures of the pledge process.

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Scooters and mopeds are a popular choice with some people when it comes to a mode of transportation. Students on college campuses or people living in bustling metropolitan areas are especially fond of opting for these two-wheeled vehicles. They are affordable, easy to park, and provide a way to get to and from class. But they also bring serious dangers especially considering that they fail to protect the rider from the elements and other dangers. If you were involved in a moped or scooter crash, contact our diligent team of Asheville personal injury lawyers today to learn more about your potential rights.

Recently, the North Carolina Court of Appeal considered a case arising from a moped accident in which one party tragically died. The administrator of the decedent’s estate filed a claim alleging that the defendant was responsible for the decedent’s death and that she had the last clear chance to avoid the accident. The decedent was leaving his job at a bicycle shop on his moped before the crash. The headlight on his moped had been broken in a previous accident and he attached a bicycle light in its place. A witness testified that she was traveling on North Carolina Highway 115 and saw a “very, very faint little light” on the road ahead. She believed the light belonged to a pedestrian. She passed the light and saw nothing because it was dark that evening.

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A personal injury lawsuit can involve more than just an accident where someone acted negligently. If you were the victim of an intentional act of violence like battery or sexual abuse, then you can bring a civil claim against the perpetrator to recover compensation for your injuries and damages. This claim is separate from any criminal charges that are pressed against the person who hurt you. The medical expenses and emotional distress that results from an intentional tort can be devastating. Call a North Carolina personal injury lawyer today to learn more about your potential legal rights.

Recently, the North Carolina Court of Appeals issued an opinion discussing a case where a man died from injuries he sustained after being punched in the head at a bar. The defendant and decedent arranged to meet at the club to discuss an alleged altercation between the defendant’s sister and the decedent. The decedent arrived with two friends and his sister. The defendant punched the decedent soon after and he fell striking his head on the floor. He was taken to a hospital where he was eventually declared brain dead and removed from life support.

The decedent’s brother filed a wrongful death action against the defendant alleging a number of claims. Evidence in the record suggested that the decedent and his mother had a special bond. He lived with his mother and provided her with assistance around the house. Witnesses testified that the mother’s behavior changed after the death and she stopped taking care of her health issues. She suffered a major stroke roughly one year after the death.

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When you purchase underinsured motorist coverage, most drivers assume that it will help them cover any gaps in the event that they are injured in an accident involving a driver who doesn’t have enough insurance to cover the damages. Insurance claims can be very complicated, however, and insurance companies do not always honor the terms of the policies provided. In other cases, an insurance company may delay providing payment or point to other provisions of the policy in an attempt to avoid having to pay benefits under the policy. At Maurer Law, our compassionate and knowledgeable team of Charlotte car accident lawyers are available to help you assert your right to insurance benefits after an accident.

The North Carolina appellate court issued an opinion in a case recently where an insurer and insured disputed whether or not the insurer was entitled to underinsured motorist benefits. The insured was a passenger in her sister’s vehicle when they were involved in an accident. The sister lost control of the vehicle, ran over a median, and collided with an 18-wheeler in the opposite lane of traffic. The sister tragically died in the crash and the insured suffered devastating injuries.

At the time of the crash, the decedent and the insured carried policies. The decedent’s policy was issued in Tennessee while the insured’s policy was issued in North Carolina. Both policies provided coverage for personal injuries up to $100,000 per occurrence and for injuries involving underinsured or uninsured motorists up to $100,000 per occurrence.

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Nursing home facilities have a responsibility to provide our loved ones with a certain level of care, support, and attention. When someone at a nursing home facility is injured due to neglect or intentional harm, the outcome is painful and devastating for the victim as well as the family. Arbitration forms are a common tool that these facilities use to try to ensure that these matters are subject to arbitration and not litigation. Fortunately, North Carolina law has made it clear that these agreements are not enforceable in some instances such as when the patient lacked appropriate mental capacity when executing the agreement. If you have concerns about the safety of your loved one living in a nursing home in North Carolina, reach out to the Charlotte nursing home abuse lawyers of Maurer Law as soon as possible.

In a recently filed case, the administrator of a decedent’s estate brought a claim alleging that the operators of a nursing home facility were negligent in providing the decedent care and that he died as a result. The plaintiff in the case, the decedent’s son in law, was named as the decedent’s power of attorney. The complaint included claims for negligence, medical negligence, and corporate negligence among other things. In response to the complaint, the defendant filed a motion to compel arbitration that it later withdrew. The defendants eventually filed another motion to stay the legal proceeding and compel arbitration. The court eventually denied the motion finding that the defendants acted inconsistently in regard to the arbitration agreement and that to allow it to pursue arbitration at this stage would cause undue prejudice to the plaintiff. The defendant promptly appealed the lower court’s decision.

On appeal, the court first noted that public policy favors arbitration because it is an efficient use of judicial resources and allows for the quick resolution of legal disputes. It then reviewed the record and noted that the defendants acted inconsistently regarding the supposed arbitration agreement. In addition to withdrawing the first motion to compel arbitration, defendants’ attorney sent an email to plaintiff’s counsel indicating that the defendants did not intend to move forward with the motion. Although it later reasserted the motion, the plaintiff had incurred expenses in the meantime in the form of litigation fees and related costs. More than 15 months had passed since the defendants first withdrew the motion and asserted it again. The plaintiff also took actions like hiring seven expert witnesses, traveling to attend hearings and other case-related matters, and preparing for deposition, and taking depositions. As a result, the appellate court upheld the lower court’s decision to deny the defendant’s motion to compel arbitration.

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Many people know that you can bring a civil claim to recover compensation for physical injuries that you suffer due to someone else’s negligence. But fewer people know that North Carolina recognizes civil claims against an employer for the tortious acts that its employees commit during the course and scope of employment. There is a specific rule regarding whether or not an employee can be held liable and it is important to know whether you may be able to assert a claim against someone’s employer. At Maurer Law, our compassionate and experienced Asheville personal injury lawyers are prepared to help you ensure that you name each potentially responsible party in your lawsuit so that you can receive the compensation you deserve.

The North Carolina Court of Appeal considered a case recently in which the plaintiff alleged that he suffered emotional distress, assault, and battery at the hands of a political campaign manager. According to the plaintiff’s complaint, a person working for the campaign held a pistol against the plaintiff’s leg while the pair were riding in a limousine. The complaint listed causes of action for assault, battery, intentional infliction of emotional distress, negligent infliction of emotional distress, and negligent hiring and retention. The defendant moved for summary judgment and the lower court granted it, which means the court did not believe there was enough evidence to support the plaintiff’s allegations.

On appeal, the court concluded that it was correct to dismiss the claim because the man who allegedly held the pistol against the plaintiff’s leg was not an employee of the campaign and was instead an independent contractor. The test to determine whether someone is an employee or independent contractor examines whether the employer exercises a certain level of control and direction over the person in question. If the campaign was able to exercise control over how the man did his work, then the court may have concluded that an employee relationship existed and that the campaign was liable for his conduct.

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