Mining for Gold on Facebook and My Space: The Legal Side

Author: Attorney Melinda H. South

Remember in grade school (or later) passing notes in class? Remember the feeling when someone was caught and the teacher threatened to read the note to the entire class? Would you be ok with the information from your social networking site being produced in discovery in a criminal or civil case? Social networking sites such as MySpace and Facebook are a potential source of electronic discovery also known as E-discovery.

E-discovery refers to any process in which electronic data (such as text, pictures, videos or documents posted to online social networking web sites) is sought with the intent of using it as evidence in a civil or criminal case. E-discovery is an…

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Legal Liability for Other Children at a Sleepover


Author: Attorney Christopher A. Meyer

All of us who are parents have probably either let our children visit other families' homes or have had other children over at our home. Sometimes these are just afternoons, sometimes they are "sleepovers" or even longer. I think we all recognize that when other people's children are placed in our care we have a moral obligation to see that they will be well taken care of. But is there a legal obligation as well?

In a recent case, Kellermann, Administrator v. McDonough (July 17, 2009) the Virginia Supreme Court said yes. In addition the Justices said that if a promise is made, such as the children will not be allowed to be in a car with a young male…

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History of Charlottesville, VA and Albemarle County


To better serve clients in the Piedmont region and the Valley, the personal injury law firm Allen, Allen, Allen and Allen opened its Charlottesville branch on March 17, 2008. The office is located in the former Charlottesville Veterinary Hospital on Route 29 in the Rio Hill Center across from Lowes.

Charlottesville and the surrounding Albemarle County are home to over 134,400 residents and are located about 110 miles southwest of Washington, D.C., and about 70miles west of Richmond. According to the county website, Albemarle County is one of the most attractive and desirable locations in Virginia, with excellent school systems, low crime and unemployment rates.Albemarle County and the City of…

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Highway Construction Worksites: A Danger Zone for Motorists

Author: Attorney George E. Allen III

When I settled a case recently, I was reminded just how dangerous highway construction work sites can be for passing motorists - and in so many different ways. In my case, the accident happened around noon in a construction zone on Interstate 70 near Terre Haute, Indiana as the family I represented was returning to Virginia in a motor home after taking a summer vacation trip. At the time of the accident, the left (passing) lane of I-70 was closed, and construction workers had directed traffic from the passing lane to the right lane. As a result, my family's vehicle was stopped in a long line of traffic waiting to merge into the single right lane.

Well before…

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Health Care Debate: True Risk - The Americans for Insurance Reform Study

Author: Attorney Malcolm P. McConnell

For years, some doctors and insurance companies have been telling us and our government that unless frivolous medical malpractice lawsuits are curtailed, and unless out-of-control verdicts are limited, doctors will be driven out of practice by high malpractice insurance premiums. Their efforts have been very successful in Virginia, where doctors enjoy the privileges of a special class, exempting them from being held responsible for the consequences of their negligence.

Throughout this conflict, your attorneys at The Allen Law Firm have worked hard to correctly inform the public and to continue to champion the old-fashioned value of personal responsibility for everyone, including…

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Mopeds, Scooters, Motorcycles, Bikes... Oh My!

Safety With Alternative Forms of Transportation

With the state of the economy and the rising cost of living, many people are looking to alternative forms of transportation in order to save money.  Among these include: motorcycles, mopeds, scooters and bicycles.  However, before you catch a ride on one of these vehicles, it is important that you catch a glimpse of these safety tips in order to have a safe ride.

Here are some general tips to consider when using alternative means of transportation:

Wear bright or reflective clothing to maximize your visibility at night. Wear a helmet designed with a hard outer shell and a retention system to protect the head and the brain in a variety of impacts. If your helmet…

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FOCUS GROUPS: An Important Tool in a Trial Attorney's Arsenal

How many times is a play on Broadway rehearsed before opening night? How many times is a scene in a movie shot before the final take? How often does the preacher practice his sermon on Saturday night? As grandma used to say, "Practice makes Perfect!"

So what does this have to do with lawyers and injury cases? A Broadway director wouldn't consider opening a play without a rehearsal. Brad Pitt wouldn't release a movie of first takes. No preacher would last long giving his sermon's first draft each Sunday. When a major case justifies the cost1, the trial needs more than one opening night. Instead of rehearsals, good lawyers use focus groups.

Focus groups arose from the creative minds of marketing…

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Quick Reference Guide: What To Do At The Scene of a Car or Truck Accident?

Click to download The Glove Compartment Quick Reference Guide: What To Do After An Accident.

If you are involved in a motor vehicle accident, it is important to know what to do next. The Glove Compartment Quick Reference Guide has easy to follow steps and a place to log important information regarding the accident. Designed to fit conveniently in your glove compartment, the Quick Reference Guide will help guide you through the steps of what to do next if an accident occurs.

If you would like a hard copy of The Glove Compartment Quick Reference Guide, click here to request one. Please provide your mailing address with your request.

What To Do After An Accident:

1. Stop - If you…

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Ride Safely - Bicycle Safety Tips

Author: Elizabeth M. Allen

People of all ages, from kindergartners to retirees, are riding bicycles for exercise and pleasure. The increase in cycling across Virginia brings with it an increase in bicycle accidents. No one wants to be involved in an accident of any kind.  Unfortunately, however, bicycle accidents, especially those involving motor vehicles, are likely to cause serious injuries to the bicyclist because he is not protected inside an automobile or truck. As a result, traumatic brain injuriesare not unusual nor are broken bones.

How To Avoid A Bicycle Accident:

Follow the "rules of the road". These are your state's traffic laws and regulations, and they apply to bicyclists as…

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The Nation's Health Care Debate: Medical Negligence - The AAJ Reports

Introduction by Attorney Malcolm P. McConnell

American Health Care, like American Justice, should be the envy of the world. We can attain this goal, but only if we base our decisions and our policies on facts. We must also be guided by traditional American values, to seek the best possible medical care for the greatest number of people, while zealously protecting the legal rights of all citizens, especially those who are innocent victims of wrongdoing. Some politicians want to limit the compensation of medical malpractice victims, wrongfully claiming that further injuring and victimizing innocents will improve health care for all of us and reduce costs. The attached Primer on Medical Negligence will give…

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