FLSA Overtime Pay Exemptions: Employee vs. Independent Contractor

The Fair Labor Standards Act or FLSA ensures that employees working in the United States are able to receive fair and equal compensation. The FLSA is responsible for establishing the federal minimum wage and regulations about overtime pay, among others. Of course, as with most laws governing a certain aspect of social life, the FLSA has certain exemptions regarding those eligible to receive the overtime pay rate.

Among those exempted from the FLSA rules on overtime pay include professionals in executive, supervisory, and outside sales positions. Independent contractors who have full control of their own work hours are also illegible from receiving overtime pay. Unfortunately, as FLSA lawyers from William Kherkher have pointed out, there are some employers that intentionally misclassify their employees in order to bypass FLSA regulations and cut on costs. As such, many employees are misclassified as independent contractors when, in fact, they are subject to fixed work schedules and disciplinary restrictions imposed by their employers.

The following are just some of the misconceptions that around the difference between being an employee and an independent contractor. First, any individual that follows procedure and renders work of an employee may not be misclassified as anything else, even if he or she may have signed a contract agreeing to it. Similarly, as noted by the Wage and Hour Division of the Department of Labor, signing any type of independent contractor agreement doesn’t automatically classify an employee as an independent contractor following the definitions delineated in the FLSA. It’s also important to remember that being an independent contractor isn’t automatically determined having the ability to work offsite and exercise flexibility over your schedule. In the same light, even individuals registered as independent contractors in their tax forms may still be considered an employee.

All in all, individuals can only be considered an independent contractor if they have full control over how the work they were hired to do will be accomplished. This means that they aren’t subject any schedule, protocol, or disciplinary procedures in performing their tasks. An easy example of an independent contractor is an interior designer. If a homeowner hires an interior designer to decorate their living room, they only give the designer an idea of how they want the space to look and feel. Accomplishing this goal, which could probably include moving around furniture or installing new shelves and curtains, will be up to the designer.

The Issue of Sole Managing Conservatorship in Divorce

Though Texas courts would rather render an order wherein both parents (who are divorcing each other) are appointed as custodians or conservators of their child to make sure that a child will continue to experience the love, care and attention from both parents, these will refrain from doing so if these find out or determine that one parent is actually unfit to care for his/her child or if in the child’s best interest, sole conservatorship or sole custody would be the right decision.

Being an “unfit” parent can be due to a variety of different reasons, including: poor health condition which will render such parent unable to provide the amount of care and attention that the child needs; abusive behavior, wherein he/she is prone to physically and/or verbally abusing the child; dependence on alcohol and/or illegal drugs; committing or lacking action that would result to the child getting exposed to pornographic elements and/or illegal activities; abandonment of the child; and, using excessive or unnecessary means in disciplining the child.

In sole custody or sole managing conservatorship, all the rights, privileges, and duties associated with caring for the child are awarded to just one parent. To other parent or the non-custodial parent, visitation rights may be awarded to him/her continuous communication with his/her child.

According to Kirker & Davis, under Texas law, the parent who is appointed as conservator has, at all times, the right:

– To receive information relating to the child’s health, education, and welfare;
– To confer (or not to confer) with the non-custodial parent before making a decision concerning the child’s health, education, and welfare;
– To consult with the child’s physician, dentist, psychologist and school officials where the educational status and welfare of the child are concerned;
– To be designated as a person to be contacted in case of an emergency;
– To manage the estate of the child.

No parent, obviously, would want lose the chance of being appointed custodian; however, for the sake and well-being of the child, it would indeed be very beneficial if he/she could find ways to come to a amicable agreement with his/her former spouse about the issue of conservatorship. While there are divorce lawyers who will help fight for your custody interests, there are also those who would rather help you and your former spouse find ways that will continue making everything better for your child. Make sure that you choose the right one.

The Protection Offered by Car Liability Insurance Coverage

The average annual rate of fatal car accidents in the U.S. from 2008 to 2015 was 33,000, which is 11,000 less than the average annual rate from 1981 to 2007. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), and all those directly concerned about traffic safety are obviously working hard in implementing road safety rules. Other than the passing of new laws aimed at further improving road safety, car manufacturers also do their part by improving car design and equipping new vehicles with modern safety devices that will make cars safer than ever.

Having 33,000 deaths every year is alarming, especially, when more than 90% of car crashes are due to driver error. This simply means that these accidents and deaths can be prevented if only drivers would act responsibly while behind the wheel and not compromise the safety of others on the road.

Bad road behavior is not the only fault that drivers have, though. Many of those who are at-fault in accidents are also guilty of failing to paying compensation to their victims. As a result, besides causing their victims pain and suffering, victims are also made to suffer financially due to the cost of medical treatment and loss of wages.

To help assure accident victims of the compensation they have a legal right to claim, carrying auto liability insurance was made compulsory for drivers. This law was passed in 1925, with the states of Massachusetts and Connecticut being the first to adopt it. Today, this law is known as the Financial Responsibility law and its aim is to help make sure that drivers who cause accidents have the financial capability to compensate victims for the damages and losses these are made to suffer.

The Financial Responsibility law requires that drivers carry auto liability insurance. The type of insurance coverage a driver needs to carry depends on the type or liability system recognized in the state where he or she resides. As many as 38 states recognize the tort or fault insurance system, while in 12 others, the “no-fault” coverage is what is required. Under the tort or fault system, compensation is paid to the victim by the insurance provider of the driver at fault; under the “no-fault” system, on the other hand, drivers involved in an accident are compensated by their respective insurance providers regardless of who is at fault in the accident.

Fault or “no-fault” system, one common thing about insurance policies is that these are needlessly expensive. Often, drivers are made to pay much more than what they really should. With help from independent car insurance firms, according to the website of Abel Law Firm, drivers have the chance of getting the type of coverage they need without hurting their budget. These independent car insurance firms offer clients free insurance quotes online to enable them to compare and find the best, yet cheapest, insurance deal.

What are Morcellators?

According to Williams Kherkher, power morcellators were developed to remove fibroids and other noncancerous growths during a hysterectomy or a myomectomy. According to the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, a hysterectomy is surgery to remove the uterus, a very common type of surgery for women in the United States. Resembling a drill, a power morcellator divided these masses into smaller pieces and then removing them from the abdomen. While medical professionals saw these devices as a way to perform these procedures in a minimally invasive way, a link between morcellators and cancer development was soon shown.

Although morcellators are suited to remove noncancerous tissue, the device can spread cancerous tissue into other regions of the body when breaking down a mass. Unfortunately, many women can develop more severe cancers as a result of the procedure.  Some of the most common forms of cancer that can result from surgery involving a morcellator include metastatic leiomyosarcoma, uterine cancer, uterine sarcoma, and endometrial stromal sarcoma.  In fact, the rates of women developing cancer following a morcellator surgery could be as high as 1 in every 370 surgeries.  Using a power morcellator can also cause an individual to develop abnormal tissue growth and cause direct harm to otherwise healthy tissue.

With such troubling findings, the FDA issued a black box warning to doctors in 2014 to not use power morcellators because of the extreme dangers associated with them.  While the device has been voluntarily recalled by the makers Johnson & Johnson, the FDA has not issued an official recall yet.  Unfortunately, many of these warnings came too late for many women who had developed devastating cancers.  Many individuals seek financial restitution in the form a lawsuit against the makers of morcellators because the life-changing effects of the device are often too severe to undo.

Boating Accidents due to Drunk Boat Drivers

Boating is a fun and relaxing way for individuals to enjoy time with their families or simply spend time on the water. Sadly, this tranquil activity can quickly become dangerous when negligent boat drivers are on the water. Carelessness can be caused by a distracted or even a drunken boat driver. Inebriated boat drivers can be one of the most dangerous aspects an individual can encounter while on the water and, unfortunately, it happens far too often.

Drunken boat drivers can expose other innocent individuals on the water to danger in many ways. One of the most common ways is that they are more prone to reckless boat driving. This can include speeding, swerving in the water, and creating heavy wakes around them, all risking the safety of other boaters on the water. Inebriated boat drivers may also ignore posted laws on the lake all together. This can also include local boating laws, even those that are not posted, such as age and life-jacket requirements. Although there are some signs posted, water ways do not have many traffic signals, often relying on the judgement of boaters to execute safe behavior. When a boat driver becomes drunk, their ability to execute cautious driving actions can become impaired, leading to an increased risk for accidents.

Often, the victims of these accidents are innocent bystanders on other boats who are in an accident. According to http://www.shw-law.com/, boating accidents are some of the most dangerous collisions that occur because victims are also exposed to the risk of drowning. In any case, victims of boating accidents are often left to deal with intense physical injuries, as well as extensive medical bills and emotional turmoil. Due to this, many individuals seek action against negligent boat operators, such as those who drove a sail boat or motorized boat under the influence. When individuals take the wheel of a boat drunk, they can quickly turn a fun activity into a dangerous one. When this is the case, receiving compensation from the party responsible may be essential in the road to recovery.

Car Accidents & Insurance: It Pays to Be Safe

Car accidents can happen to anyone. There are enough of them in the world right now and transport from one point to another, these days, requires the usage of motor vehicles. That is why it is more than statistically probable to state that every person in this generation today will experience at least one car accident in their entire lives. Not all of these accidents are extremely devastating, sure. It can be something as easily forgivable as a scratched paint job or an accidental dent that happens to the best of us. But you can’t pick the kind of accident you’re involved in – especially once it has already happened.

Habush Habush & Rottier S.C. ® say on their website that some possible causes of car accidents wherein there is a party legally accountable for the damage sustained by the accident. Driver error, reckless driving, speeding, drunk driving, mechanical defects, or highway defects are some possible causes, for example, but the reasons are not limited to these reasons alone. You never can actually predict how a car accident can happen and though the situations are always different and there are always varying variables involved, the procedure remains the same – no matter how stressful it might be to deal with after an accident.

It need not be quite as stressful, however, if you had availed of reliable car insurance upon the purchase of your vehicle. Some people may think that insurance is not really necessary to avail, more like an accessory that can dangles without any kind of specific purpose. All until an accident happens to them. According to Franklin car accident lawyers, it can actually be more expensive to deal with a car accident without car insurance than it is to actually avail of insurance.

It is often the most advisable thing to think of the future, of the worst possible scenario in order to be ready to deal with it when it does happen. It’s better than to have it happen all of a sudden, like the entire world has been swept under from your feet from a rug. It places you with much better chances at recovery to actually be prepared than to think that you’ll be prepared when the time comes.

What’s The Deal with Medical Malpractice?

The thing about personal injury cases is that they are often life changing. There is no going back to the state that you were in before the accident that caused the injury happened. Sometimes, this is due to finances or stress; sometimes there is some psychological trauma involved. However, it is possible for recovery to be something that can be worked towards, after a time. There are some accidents, unfortunately, that there is no going back from. And unlike a lot of cases of personal injury, the ones that happen under the supposed to be scrupulous eyes of a medical professional are devastating and incontrovertible.

Personal injury can be a complicated arena to dabble in. After all, it is a broad term for a wide number of different cases that involve an array of possible cases.

A lawsuit involving personal injury may involve a cocktail of different cases that then make the proceedings just that much more difficult to conclude. For example, in the event of a car accident, was the defect found in the car from manufacturing or were the roads unsafe? Was there an eighteen wheeler truck involved or was the driver at fault under the influence of drugs or alcohol? There are many complications that need to be handled for these kinds of cases. One of the most complex subsets of personal injury comes with subsets of its own: medical malpractice.

The attorneys with Crowe & Mulvey, LLP point out a lot of different kinds of cases that involve medical malpractice on their website. A traumatic brain injury, for example, can be due to the negligent action of the medical professional in question – and brain injuries are incurable and cannot be recovered from. The legal team that handles these kinds of cases must then be knowledgeable of both the state law involving medical malpractice, as well as sufficient knowledge of medical jargon and knowhow in order to properly represent the case involved.

It is important to get legal representation with people who have experience with these scenarios so that you know you are in decent, capable hands.

What Can A Criminal Conviction Affect In Your Life?

We do not live in a world of absolute white and black areas – there are always grey areas. More often than not, it is within these grey areas that there can be the judgment as to whether or not something can be pardoned for the action was done with coercion or within reason, or not.

However, these are difficult times for justice – the grey areas are ever expanding and sometimes, the balance tips in the favor of something else other than the right thing for the sake of many other things. Things like influence, politics, propaganda, or even money can tip those scales and those who don’t have enough can be left to their own devices, trapped in a web like a fly among a nest of spiders, and left to fend for themselves.

Criminal charges can leave a stain that lingers for the rest of your life – like a stitched up wound that never stops bleeding out and when people see the red in your ledger, a lot of open doors can close on you and your family. Opportunities close almost immediately for those who have been convicted with a crime – educational and professional. Sometimes, people are even prevented from seeking out well-needed loans from banks due to their criminal record.

According to the website of Alexander & Associates, the effects of a conviction can even touch on the lives of innocent family members just by proximity. For example, there has been a case wherein there was a man who was convicted of a crime and his wife, who was unable to conceive children, was prevented from adopting a child, thereby stopping them from making a family.

This kind of devastating situation should never have to happen without reason and so if you or someone you know is ever accused or charged with something criminal, it is important to contact a reputable defense attorney in order to ensure a fair trial so that you are protected and kept safe in the confines of the law.

Why Are Children Afraid of the Dentist?

For a child, there is almost nothing quite as scary as a trip to the dentist’s office. Over the years, that kind of fear has dwindled but there is a reason that a lot of children can be afraid of their trip to the dentist’s office. Sometimes, it is because they associate a specific memory with going to the dentist. For example, if a dental procedure that had happened before – like a root canal or a tooth extraction – caused pain, then it is possible for the child to be fearful of a repeat performance of that pain.

It is quite typical for children to experience some measure of anxiety for a dentist’s appointment, according to the website of Dr. Sid K. Steadman, especially if it is their first time to do so. It is then advisable for parents to not associate the visit beforehand with notions of pain or hurt. Telling children that “they won’t hurt you if you behave,” or other notions like it is often detrimental to the visit. If you introduce the idea that there is the possibility of pain or hurt with the visit, children are susceptible to these suggestions and will dread the visit as it is.

That is why it is recommended that positivity is promoted as much as possible during trips to the dentist in order to alleviate any anxiety or fear that these children might have.

Regular trips to the dentist may then be made easier if the children will actually look forward to the trips as opposed to being afraid. Instilling the habit of getting regular trips to the dentist can save a lot of stress in the future. In order for children to learn the importance of upkeep and dental hygiene, it is imperative for them to have their teeth regularly cleaned and checked up.

This will lessen the probability of cavities. Have your children’s teeth checked regularly with routine dental check-ups and lessen their fears by reassuring them that there is nothing to worry about.

What Does Real Estate Litigation Mean For Me?

It has been regarded by many that ownership of actual, proper property – real estate, an actual home – is the ultimate accomplishment. It can be one of the most fulfilling success stories to ever be and this is possible due to careful planning, a lot of hard work, and a lot of planning. However, due to the market and economic scene right now, there is quite the high probability of real estate litigation to come into play at some point during the transaction.

These kinds of legal proceedings tend to be complicated and quite stressful to deal with when you do not know what you’re dealing with. And when you are not in the know of certain aspects of the law, it is more than possible for those who do to wrongfully take advantage of that ignorance for their own selfish, nefarious purposes. That is why it is important to ask the most pressing questions to problems you might not know you have or might have.

For one thing, you might be asking yourself – what is real estate litigation?

Litigation, in the broadest sense of the term, deals with the resolution of disputes through the justice system and court proceedings. A lot of people would tend to opt out of the legal option due to the kind of work and finances that will be put into question, should there be a lawsuit in play. These are common in things like divorces or last wills and testaments. These are, unfortunately, also possible with real estate.

Some dealings that involve the help of Plano real estate litigation lawyers can include instances of, but are not limited to, wrongful foreclosure (which can devastate a family’s financial situation) to construction defects or disputes. Sometimes, there are even personal injury cases that come into the picture, which can only lead to further legal complications. That is why it is often recommended that should you be in a situation where your rights on your real estate have been wronged or contested, it is highly recommended that experienced attorneys are contacted in order to best know how to proceed with the scene at hand.

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