Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Hiding from a Subpoena?

Most judgment creditors will tell you that hiding from subpoenas and dodging being served is childish. From their point of view it would be. It is annoying to them. It costs them time and they have to wait in order to make the next move on you.

Some folks dodge being served a subpoena as a stall tactic. Especially if they know the timing of civil procedure.  There is also a fifty-fifty chance the judge will dismiss the case because the suing party failed to serve the subpoena properly or in a timely fashion. The reasoning is that the court will not have personal jurisdiction over you. So the case will be dismissed without prejudice which means the plaintiff will try again and they most likely will. The plaintiff can also request alternative forms of service when personal delivery fails.

They may even try to lie to the court saying that you have been served in order to get a summary judgment. Whether they phoney up papers from process servers or a certified letter, if they get a summary judgment, you might know about it.

Arm yourself with the internet and locate the county court that you reside in. Not all courts are sophisticated to have an online database of court cases, but most do. If they do not or if you are not sure give the county court clerk a call to see if your name is popping up on any dockets. If you think someone is trying to serve you, using the internet can help you see what is going on.

If you see that a summary judgment was granted against you, your next step is to make a motion to vacate the judgment. Hopefully you have enough time to file. You can only play this game if you know what you are doing.

There are also certain types of subpoenas, some of which should not be ignored. An example would be a Subpoena in Aid of Execution. Failing to appear could be considered contempt of court and a warrant could be made for your arrest. It is best to consult with an attorney if you are unsure about this legal paperwork. Hiding under a rock can hurt you.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Suing a Restaurant for Food Poisoning

While most restaurants carry a good amount of liability insurance it can be very difficult to successfully win a claim against a restaurant for food poisoning. The problem is sustaining poof. Many personal injury lawyers will not take a food poisoning case because of the lack of evidence to win the case.

If you feel that you were a victim of food poisoning with a particular restaurant, you will need to act immediately. First go to a hospital and get documentation from a doctor that your illness is due to food poisoning. Now you will have to link that with the restaurant. For that you will need your dining receipt and a witness that will testify that you ate at that restaurant.

Here is the other problem. Was it really the food that made you sick? If no other reports were made about that restaurant at about that time you were there, you will be in a very small minority. So small that it makes it unclear that food was what made you sick if no one else got sick. If you were able to sample the take home food and have it tested and the results came back positive for bacteria or a virus you would have a more compelling case.

As you can see it would be difficult to prepare good food poisoning case against a restaurant if you don't have enough evidence.

A very common stomach virus that can make you very ill and usually comes from restaurants (and even hospitals) is the norovirus. It appears usually in situations where food is prepared. This virus is found in the vomit and fecal matter of the infected person and is transmitted by touch. You will become infected through food, drink and even touching a surface that has been contaminated.

This is why you have to be careful when using public bathrooms. If someone before you goes to the bathroom and doesn't wash their hands they are going to be touching surfaces like door handles. A food handler or yourself can be transmitting this virus very easily and will become ill in a few hours.

Do you feel you have been injured by a restaurant? Seek a personal injury attorney for advice. You may or may not have a case. Click here for more frequently asked questions about law.