Bowling Green Kentucky Legal Blog

How do SSI and SSDI benefits differ?

As a Kentucky resident with a serious, long-term disability, you may be working through your options and attempting to figure out whether you may be able to get financial assistance through the U.S. Social Security Administration. Both Social Security Disability Insurance and Supplemental Security Income help Americans with disabilities get by financially without working, but there are some key distinctions that exist between the two types of assistance programs.

According to the National Council on Aging, you may be able to qualify for SSDI if you meet two specific eligibility criteria. First, the U.S. Social Security Administration must determine that your disability is severe enough to meet its strict definition of the term. Second, you need to have a substantial enough work history within a position covered by Social Security in order to potentially be eligible for benefits.

Red light traffic deaths reach a 10-year high

Traffic lights seek to help control traffic patterns and prevent residents of Kentucky and the United States from colliding with one another, but they only work as planned when motorists pay attention and use them as designed. Debra L. Broz, Attorneys at Law, PLC, recognize that red-light car wrecks are at an all-time high across the United States, and that all motorists, cyclists and pedestrians should exercise extreme caution when navigating their way through them.

Per NBC News, drivers who blew through red lights caused 939 traffic fatalities in 2017, which is an almost-30% increase over the number of lives lost due to these circumstances in 2012. It is also the highest number of lives lost in red-light wrecks since 2008, highlighting an alarming and dangerous trend.

Relaxing trucker hours-of-service rules a threat to public safety

For some time now, truck drivers across Kentucky and the nation have argued that the current rules dictating when they must stop and rest are too restrictive. Now, changes may loom in terms of how long and how often today’s truck drivers must rest. Debra Broz, Attorneys at Law, PLC, understand that relaxing trucker drive-time regulations means more fatigued truck drivers would be traveling U.S. roadways, and we also have considerable experience helping clients hurt in crashes involving fatigued truckers seek recourse in the aftermath.

Per the L.A. Times, those supporting the proposed changes to trucker drive-time rules and regulations believe that doing so would put more “put more power back in the hands of the drivers and motor carriers,” with some attesting that it would allow them to spend more time with their families. Those opposed to the possible changes, however, note that tractor-trailer-involved highway fatalities are rising already, with 4,657 fatal truck crashes reported in 2017, which is a 10% increase from 2016.

Study highlights causes of surgical errors

People who live in Kentucky and who may be in need of undergoing a surgical procedure might feel a bit nervous or concerned about the prospect of a problem occurring during their operation. These concerns are not unfounded as medical errors have made major news headlines in recent years as contributing to a significant number of deaths in the United States every year. Some research has even indicated that only heart disease and cancer claim more lives annually.

A new study report reviewing the causes of some surgical errors has recently been published and highlights some areas for improvement. As explained by Becker's Hospital Review, the results investigated 188 errors identified as adverse events. Of those 188 adverse events, 106 were attributed to human error. That means the actions or inactions of medical staff played a role in 56% of the surgical mistakes reviewed as part of this study.

3 things to know about encounters with drunk drivers

Drunk driving is a behavior that creates danger for not just the person driving, but also their passengers and everyone else on the road. Drunk drivers are almost universally aware of the risks that come with their decision to get behind the wheel after enjoying a few drinks. The same is true of drugged drivers who get behind the wheel after using powerful pharmaceutical medications or recreational drugs.

Unfortunately, the people who cross paths with impaired drivers don't have as much say in what happens. Simply choosing to make the right decision yourself won't completely protect you from the consequences of someone else's bad choices. For drivers who encounter others obviously under the influence, there are three important things that they should keep in mind.

Does a mental illness qualify for disability benefits?

If you are suffering from a mental illness in Kentucky, it probably has had an adverse impact on how you live your everyday life. Sometimes, your condition can be so severe that you are just not able to continue working. Worried about finances, you may be wondering whether or not you may qualify for some kind of assistance from Social Security. 

According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), there are two different kinds of programs administered by the Social Security Administration (SSA) that provide benefits to those who have the inability to work due to severe mental health conditions. This is vital due to the current prevalence of such illnesses. Each year, 43.8 million Americans suffer from syndromes such as depression, anxiety, schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, dissociative disorder, posttraumatic stress disorder or psychosis, and many are helped by support from the SSA. 

How motorcyclists can maximize their safety on the road

With rolling farmlands and roads that wind around beautiful mountains, Kentucky is a motorcycle rider’s paradise. Cyclists love the open feeling and bucolic scenery throughout the state and often enjoy riding together in a group. However, just as with any motor vehicle, there is always the chance of being involved in car accidents. How can bikers safely ride with confidence?

Motorcyclists have good reason to fear the worst. The New York Times recently reported about a horrific accident in New Hampshire where a truck hit a group of bikers riding together on a rural road. The truck swerved over the yellow line into the space where the cyclists were riding, killing seven people with three more suffering injuries. 

How the U.S. Social Security Administration defines “disability”

Many residents of Kentucky have disabilities that are serious enough to prevent them from working, and if you are among them, you may have applied for benefits from the U.S. Social Security Administration in an effort to stay financially afloat. At the law firm of Debra L. Broz, Attorneys at Law, PLC, we recognize that many people who apply for Social Security disability benefits receive denials in response to their applications, and we have helped many clients facing similar circumstances pursue successful benefit appeals.

According to the U.S. Social Security Administration, there are two main terms you need to meet in order to potentially qualify for disability benefits. First, you need to have a certain work history within positions covered by Social Security. Second, your condition needs to meet the administration’s precise definition of the term “disability.”

Why are people still texting and driving?

While driving on Kentucky roadways, you may all too often see other drivers operating their vehicle with a mobile device in their hands. Whether they are using them to read or write a text, look at directions or seek information on the internet, this is a dangerous practice with the opportunity for devastating consequences. 

Time Magazine notes that soon after the introduction of smartphones, people saw a negative impact on the road as a result of this technology. Accidents ranging from fender-benders to deaths that resulted from distracted driving began to proliferate, triggering a massive blitz of numerous safety campaigns. Whether from television, radio, billboards or in the newspaper, drivers were warned of the dangers of texting and driving via crash scene photographs, stories and statistics. 

A shortage of truckers can impact public safety

People might have heard news about the shortage of truckers that is happening in this country. It really isn't something new, and it doesn't appear that it is going to be rectified in the near future. What many of these individuals may not realize is that this issue can have an impact on their safety while on the roads.

While the number of truckers is trending down, the number of loads that need to be hauled is not. In fact, the demand is growing, which poses a problem for trucking companies. When you add in the current demand for rapid transport, including the promise of overnight deliveries, the problem becomes more complex.

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