Pregnant woman in hospital bed

Birth Injuries: 5 Common Causes

Childbirth is widely regarded as a joyous event heralding a future of love, growth, and exploration surrounding a new existence. In fact, if you ask a mother about the best day of her life, she’ll likely start listing the dates when her children were born.

People have many ways of preparing for the birth of a child. There’s the fluffy stuff — baby showers, gender reveal parties, cute onesie shopping, negotiating future diaper duties — and then there are the more serious components of preparing for a baby: figuring out a birth plan (natural? medicated? hospital? home?), taking birthing classes, and even doing prenatal yoga to reduce anxiety and improve sleep. 

Unfortunately, a mother can prepare extensively and something can still go wrong. A baby being injured during childbirth is every mother’s worst nightmare, and if you’ve experienced this, you might be entitled to compensation. Here are five common causes of birth injuries

1. Medications 

Some medications can cause birth defects or injury when prescribed to a pregnant mother. Doctors are required to be exceptionally careful when prescribing medications to pregnant women, because medications can be transferred to the fetus via the placenta and can potentially injure the baby. 

Medications that can cause birth injury or defect include:

  • Zoloft
  • Prozac
  • Lexapro
  • Depakote
  • Aleve
  • Excedrin
  • Topamax
  • Zofran
  • Accutane
  • Solodyn 
  • Doryx

However, doctors make mistakes more frequently than you might imagine, and sometimes those mistakes come with severe consequences.

2. Macrosomia

Macrosomia describes infants who are born significantly larger than other infants in their gestational age category (gestational age is the number of weeks a baby has spent in the uterus). 

Macrosomia can cause birth injuries in a few ways — the baby’s broader shoulders can potentially get stuck in the birthing canal, or the baby might experience bone fractures, for example. 

3. Oxygen Deprivation 

Oxygen deprivation during birth is known as birth asphyxia and is defined by a lack of oxygen and blood flow to the infant’s brain. According to Seattle Children’s Hospital, cells require oxygen and nutrients (from blood) in order to function, and without them, harmful acids build up in the cells. 

Birth asphyxia can cause intellectual and learning disabilities, developmental delays, cerebral palsy, and epilepsy. 

4. Forceps or Vacuum Injuries

Operative vaginal delivery is a vaginal delivery in which forceps or vacuum are used in order to help guide the baby out of the birth canal. Forceps are an oversized pair of tongs, while the vacuum is just that — a suction cup. 

Milder forceps/vacuum injuries include bruising and temporary facial palsy, while more severe forceps/vacuum injuries include skull fractures, bleeding, and seizures. 

5. Delayed Childbirth

When a baby is in the birth canal for over 18 hours, that baby is considered to be in fetal distress. The pressure inside the birth canal can crush a baby’s organs, and it’s difficult for oxygen to reach the baby’s brain when it has been in the birth canal for so long. Risks involved in delayed childbirth include spina bifida, autism, and cerebral palsy. 

Seeking Legal Aid for Babies Injured During Birth

Birth injuries can be mild, but they can also be devastating and have ramifications that last well into a child’s adult life. Birth injuries are also often preventable and can be caused by medical malpractice or other human errors. If your baby was injured during birth, you may be entitled to monetary compensation. 

Hunt Law Firm is a premier personal injury law firm serving clients throughout northern New Mexico. Each attorney on Hunt’s dedicated team has a track record of winning successful jury awards for victims, and they will shepherd you through your legal journey with strength, skill, and compassion. Get in touch with our office today.

client signing waiver with personal injury attorney

Medical Liability Waivers: When Can You Still Sue After Signing?

There are plenty of medical professionals in your life who might require you to sign a medical liability waiver: nurse practitioners, doctors, surgeons, chiropractors, physical therapists, dentists — the list goes on. 

It can be off-putting and scary when someone asks you to sign a piece of paper giving up any of your rights, let alone your right to pursue legal recourse. What if a medical procedure goes wrong and renders you unable to sue for financial and emotional damages? 

If you signed a medical liability waiver before a procedure and want to sue for damages, read on to determine whether it makes sense for you to proceed. 

What is a medical liability waiver?

A medical liability waiver is, above all else, a release. Signing a medical liability waiver means that you are releasing your medical professional from all legal liability if something goes wrong during your procedure. 

It is illegal to force a mentally capable adult to undergo any medical procedure, no matter how small, unless they give informed consent. 

Signing a medical liability waiver means that you are waiving your right to sue a medical professional for damages after the fact. A medical liability waiver is meant to ensure that a patient is as informed as possible about the risks their procedure might entail so that patients will be unable to seek financial damages.

Patients’ Rights and Medical Liability Waivers

As mentioned above, adults who are capable of making decisions for themselves cannot be forced to undergo medical treatment unless they give consent. 

This does not apply to adults with developmental disabilities or intellectual handicaps, who generally have a proxy. A proxy is a person who makes medical decisions for a person who cannot make decisions for themselves. 

If you are a proxy, your rights regarding whether you can sue after signing a medical liability waiver are basically the same as if you were making medical decisions for yourself. 

When can you still sue after signing a medical liability waiver?

Just because you sign a medical liability waiver doesn’t mean a medical professional or company isn’t responsible for your safety. There are a few reasons you might be able to sue after signing a medical liability waiver.

First, your medical liability waiver must include the following three things to constitute informed consent: 

  • The kind of procedure that the patient will undergo
  • Every significant risk involved in the procedure
  • Any medically viable alternatives to the procedure 

If your medical liability waiver is missing any of these three things, you did not give informed consent before undergoing a medical procedure, and you can sue.

Another situation in which you would be able to sue would be in the case of the waiver not being specific enough about the procedure and its risks or if your personal injury was not one of the risks you were warned of in the waiver.

The final circumstance in which you would be able to sue after signing a medical liability waiver would be in cases of gross negligence. In other words, you can sue if you believe you can provide a court with evidence that proves you were injured because your doctor was grossly negligent while performing the procedure.

Seeking Legal Aid After Signing a Medical Liability Waiver

There are few things more important to a person than their health, and it can be incredibly disempowering to feel forced into accepting the consequences of actions that were not your fault. 

If you believe you were taken advantage of by a medical provider or that you were a victim of medical malpractice, you may have the right to sue for damages and obtain financial compensation. 

Contact Hunt Law, a personal injury law firm serving clients across northern New Mexico. Their dedicated attorneys will guide you through your legal journey with skill, focus, and compassion.

Injured teenager getting arm wrapped by doctor

How to File a Personal Injury Claim for a Minor

A minor who has experienced an injury may have grounds for a personal injury claim, but injured minors who are under the age of 18 are not allowed by the court to bring a personal injury claim for themselves. An injured minor or child will not be able to file a claim without a parent or a legal guardian. Find out how to file a personal injury claim for a minor. 

Examples of Minors’ Personal Injuries and Statute of Limitations

Personal injury claims that apply to minors are handled differently than personal injury claims involving injuries to adults. Many accidents lead to injuries in minors because an adult behaved in a negligent manner or breached a duty of care. Personal injuries experienced by minors can happen in a range of settings and scenarios, including:

  • School bus transportation accidents
  • Jungle gym/playground falls
  • Pool outings
  • Use of defective products
  • Daycare accidents and negligence
  • School activities
  • Sports
  • After-school activities
  • Field trip accidents
  • Interactions with pets/animals
  • Motor vehicle accidents 
  • Medical malpractice

States enforce statutes of limitations that restrict the amount of time a victim has to file a personal injury complaint. A personal injury attorney can advise you on the details of these time limits in your state.

The Guardian ad Litem

Personal injury claims for minors need to be filed by the parent or legal guardian of the minor. Some judges may appoint a guardian ad litem to ensure that there is no conflict of interest between the parent or legal guardian and the minor that they represent. The guardian ad litem will also ensure that the legal guardian or parent is not taking advantage of the minor or the situation. 

The Minor’s Damages

In some cases, the minor and the parent or legal guardian may both have grounds to be found eligible for damages. A minor may be eligible for pain and suffering as a result of the injury, which includes emotional trauma. A minor may also be eligible for damages for lost wages if they had to take time off of work as a result of their injury.

Suppose that the minor suffered injuries due to the gross negligence of another, such as in a case of school or daycare abuse. In those cases, punitive damages might also be included in a claim for compensation. 

The Parent or Legal Guardian’s Damages

A parent or legal guardian representing a minor in a personal injury claim could potentially be owed out-of-pocket medical costs that were not covered by health insurance. 

Additionally, the court may appoint the parent or legal guardian damages for lost wages for any time that was taken off work to take care of the injured minor.

General Settlement Information

With a smaller settlement amount, the compensation will most likely be deposited into the court’s registry. The minor may access their account when they are a legal adult at 18 years old.

Larger settlements will usually be managed by the attorney and the guardian ad litem assigned to the case. Again, the compensation will most likely be placed in an investment or annuity account until the minor becomes a legal adult at 18 years of age. 

Let Hunt Law Help You

Every attorney at Hunt Law is dedicated to protecting the rights of clients and helping them pursue the compensation they deserve. Our areas of practice encompass:

  • Medical malpractice
  • Wrongful death
  • Personal injury
  • Catastrophic injury

Hunt Law is proud to give you respect, service, and reassurance. We serve clients in Las Vegas and the following cities in Northern New Mexico:

  • Santa Fe
  • Albuquerque
  • Rio Rancho
  • Raton
  • Roswell 
  • Los Alamos 

Get in touch with a skilled personal injury attorney at Hunt Law for a free consultation today.

Wrongful Death report and gavel in a court

Wrongful Death Claims: Avoid Common Mistakes

New Mexico state law defines a wrongful death claim as a fatal incident caused by another person, either through their direct actions or failure to act in an appropriate way.

Unfortunately, filing a wrongful death claim can be a complicated and emotional process where people are understandably bound to make mistakes. 

While carrying painful emotional grief from mourning the loss of their loved one, families scramble to obtain funds for burial services and deal with multiple other problems. This can make it hard to think through all of the elements that might support a wrongful death claim.

Wrongful death laws vary from state to state, but people’s mistakes when pursuing a wrongful death claim seem to remain consistent across the U.S. 

With this in mind, here is a short guide on how to avoid common mistakes when filing a wrongful death claim.

Avoid Arguing

Many families end up arguing with each other due to high tension and disagreements. However, it is crucial to communicate, listen to each other, and avoid arguing altogether. Arguments always complicate lawsuits and make the process more difficult for everyone involved. Additionally, they allow more misunderstandings to occur.

Try to avoid arguing with your family as much as possible. Remember that you are all working toward the same goal.

Stay Silent

Many people may want to speak with the media or feel pressured to after the death of a loved one. Please avoid talking to other people about the death, especially any local newspapers or news media outlets. Unfortunately, any statement that you make in public may eventually be used against you.

Avoid speaking with the insurance companies of the opposing party. One or more of these companies may try to offer compensation to you. Refrain from talking to them altogether because insurance companies may use anything you say against you. They will also try to reduce or deny the money rightfully owed to you.

Whenever possible, stay silent and avoid talking to other parties. 

Think Before You Agree to a Settlement Offer

Try not to accept any settlement offer without taking time to think about whether that offer is the best option in your case. You will not be allowed to ask for additional compensation at any time in the future after you accept a settlement agreement. 

Ensure that the money offered is enough to take care of you and your family after the death of your loved one.

Hire an Attorney

A skilled attorney will help you navigate the legal process without burdening you with any of the usual stressors that come with lawsuits. They can ensure that you avoid any other common mistakes, such as the following:

  • Waiting too long to take legal action
  • Going past the statute of limitations
  • Failing to name all potentially liable parties
  • Failing to include a parent company, employer, or partnering organization as a responsible party
  • Missing an important deadline to file or produce documentation

These mistakes can completely make or break your case. 

Contact Hunt Law to Avoid Mistakes

At Hunt Law, we are intimately familiar with what it takes to file a successful wrongful death claim in New Mexico. With extensive experience in medical malpractice, wrongful death, personal injury, and catastrophic injury cases, we provide the respect and skill that you deserve.

We serve clients in many locations, including Las Vegas, Santa Fe, Albuquerque, Rio Rancho, Raton, Roswell, and Los Alamos.

Let the team at Hunt Law help you at all stages throughout the legal process. Get in touch with an experienced and skilled attorney from our team for a free consultation today.

stethoscope and gavel representing medical malpractice

5 Diseases Commonly Misdiagnosed by Doctors

Misdiagnosis is more than a mistake. It’s a decision that can have life-altering or even fatal consequences. Because it is such a serious issue, one might assume it is a problem doctors are desperate to avoid. That may be the case, but the fact remains that around 1 in 20 patients are misdiagnosed.

Obviously, failing to correctly diagnose a patient can delay the person’s recovery and may even subject them to treatments that are harmful. That’s why misdiagnosis is a major subcategory of medical malpractice. When this situation happens, the patient is entitled to compensation for their wasted time, money, and suffering. 

While we wish this were not a common issue, the truth is that millions of Americans are misdiagnosed every year. As a result, you might wonder about some of the most commonly misdiagnosed diseases. Keep reading and we will cover a few. 

1. Cancer

Over a million people are diagnosed with cancer each year. But not every diagnosis of the disease is correct. According to some studies, the rate of misdiagnosis may even be as high as 28%.

Usually, a cancer misdiagnosis occurs because of a mistake made in the pathology lab. A misread tissue sample could have disastrous effects for the patient. 

2. Pulmonary Embolism

Pulmonary embolisms, or blood clots in the lungs, present with shortness of breath, sweating, chest pain, and even anxiety. And yet, doctors often miss these telltale signs. 

Unfortunately, a misdiagnosed pulmonary embolism will often result in death. The damage from this disease greatly increases over time, so missing an early window could have catastrophic effects. 

3. Lyme Disease

Lyme disease is often referred to as “The Great Imitator.” That’s because its symptoms can be similar to those of other conditions, like Alzheimer’s, fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome, and more. 

Lyme disease is caused by a tick bite and is sometimes accompanied by a bulls-eye rash. But if that rash is not present, misdiagnosis is more likely to occur. In fact, fewer than a quarter of Lyme disease sufferers report being correctly diagnosed at the onset of the disease. 

4. Heart Attacks

Since heart disease is the leading cause of death for people in the United States, you would think most doctors would know a heart attack when they see one. And yet, this condition remains one of the most misdiagnosed diseases. 

Unfortunately, if a heart attack does not receive proper treatment within the first hour, the risk of scarring and muscle death increases dramatically. So a failure to diagnose this condition the first time will sometimes result in death. 

5. Stroke

Unfortunately, tens of thousands of people are misdiagnosed after having a stroke. These patients are often told they’re suffering from vertigo or migraines. This is even more likely to happen when a patient is a minority, a woman, or a person under the age of 45. 

What to Do If You Have Been Misdiagnosed

When you make a visit to the doctor, you expect to be properly cared for. So learning that you have been misdiagnosed by a professional you trusted can leave you feeling vulnerable and unsure of how to proceed. 

If you believe you have been misdiagnosed, you should move quickly to get a second opinion from another doctor. Once the misdiagnosis is confirmed, you should speak to a lawyer about a potential medical malpractice lawsuit. Pursuing legal action can help you get compensation for injuries, trauma, or medical bills you wouldn’t otherwise have. 

Whenever you’re ready, Hunt Law Firm is here to help. From personal injury to medical malpractice, we cover it all in Northern New Mexico. Get in touch with our office today.

Older woman's hand being held

Are Nursing Home Staffing Shortages Causing Increased Injury Risk?

There is no denying the disproportionate effect the COVID-19 pandemic has had on the nursing home industry. Not only has it brought about new challenges but it has exasperated existing challenges as well. Issues like staffing shortages and high turnover rates have only gotten worse over the last few years.

If you have a loved one in a nursing home, you may wonder how these current conditions will affect their safety. Below, we’ll cover a range of topics, like whether the staffing shortage has increased the risk of injury. 

Increased Risk of COVID-19

Since the onset of the pandemic, the nursing home community has lost more than 200,000 people to the virus—including both staff members and residents. Of course, this huge number is due in part to the vulnerable nature of nursing home residents and their susceptibility to contagious diseases. 

However, studies seem to indicate that there is another reason for the high number of pandemic-related nursing home deaths: the staffing shortage. As care facilities struggle to give their residents full support, infections and deaths soar. 

As this problem continues to take its toll, the need for vaccinated staff members grows even more critical. In the meantime, you may wonder what else your loved one has to worry about. 

What We Know

Recent studies have shown that the majority of nursing home facilities are not meeting the staffing standards set by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. Sometimes this is out of necessity; other times it is done by choice to save money. Whatever the reason, residents are always the group who suffer most. 

When there is a poor nurse-to-resident ratio, nurses feel more stress, and the risk of abuse or neglect rises. As you might imagine, this can lead to injury, infection, psychological problems, and even death. 

If you are about to place your loved one in a nursing home or care facility, make sure to do your research beforehand. Ask for recommendations from friends and family members, speak to staff members so you can get a feel for the environment, and try making a visit to the facility on multiple occasions. 

The Most Common Causes of Nursing Home Injuries

Even when you perform your due diligence when placing a loved one in a care home, there is still a risk of injury or illness. We want you to be aware of the most common injuries sustained in nursing homes so you know what to watch for. 

1. Falls

According to the CDC, almost ¾ of all nursing home residents experience a fall. It’s not uncommon for a patient to sustain multiple falls in a given year. Because the elderly are more likely to suffer from muscle weakness or gait problems, some degree of risk is to be expected. But other details, like wet floors or poor lighting, can increase the risk. 

2. Bedsores

There is no excuse for bedsores in a nursing home, yet they remain one of the most common types of injuries that occur there. Keep in mind that while a bedsore may start as a mild injury, it can quickly worsen and lead to infection or death.

3. Overdosing/Improper Medication

When a nursing home resident requires medication, you trust the facility to provide the proper dosage. In the wrong setting, an overworked or overstressed caregiver might accidentally provide the wrong dose — leading to potentially deadly consequences.

Facing an Injury from a Nursing Home?

If you or a loved one has been injured in a nursing home, call Hunt Law Firm. We handle personal injury and wrongful death cases in Northern New Mexico.

Woman speaking with therapist

Can a Therapist Be Held Responsible for Malpractice in New Mexico?

When many people think of medical malpractice, they may think of doctors who handle physical care –- surgeons, specialists, or general practitioners. However, therapists and licensed counselors, who handle mental health concerns, are also subject to malpractice claims. 

Although psychologist malpractice may be harder to spot than physical damage or bodily injury, it can be just as damaging to the person who experiences it.

The basic case structure of malpractice claims against a therapist will take the same form as that against a medical doctor. The plaintiff will have to prove:

  • A duty of care was owed
  • That duty was breached
  • The breach of care caused injury

In many cases involving malpractice suits against a therapist, you need a medical malpractice attorney with experience pursuing these cases.

What are common negligent or abusive acts from a therapist?

Negligence and abuse in a psychiatry setting generally stem from an imbalance of power that favors the professional over the patient. The professional may breach boundaries or provide negligent treatment.

When erosion of professional boundaries happens, the patient and professional may become enmeshed, to the detriment of the patient’s mental health. Other times, a sexual relationship and manipulation can occur. 

Whether the negligent or abusive acts were sexual or not, the overall breach of patient trust typically harms them the most.

Therapist negligence falls into two categories:

Boundary Crossing

There are many ways that a therapist can cross professional boundaries, including:

  • Revealing personal details of their own life
  • Holding sessions in inappropriate venues, such as a public setting
  • Moving sessions to the end of the day, when the therapist and patient are the only ones in the office
  • Sexual innuendos, or discussion of their own sex lives
  • Crossing physical boundaries, such as holding hands, hugging, or kissing
  • Breaching confidentiality by discussing your details or details of another person

This isn’t a complete list, but in general, erosion of boundaries reduces the effect of treatment. Additionally, crossing boundaries may exacerbate betrayal of trust or sexual assault the patient has experienced in the past.

Inappropriate Treatment

Counseling negligence and abuse aren’t limited to boundary-crossing. Therapists can fail to provide treatment in the same way medical doctors may, such as:

  • Failure to explain the style of therapy that will be employed
  • Acting critical, aggressive, or abusive in sessions
  • Being overly opinionated to dictatorial 
  • Threatening to terminate sessions or change sessions without notice
  • Employing practices they aren’t trained in
  • Failing to address your presenting issues
  • Failing to refer you to a specialist better able to treat your needs

If you, the patient, are in worse mental health than before you began treatment, you may have a malpractice case. Your medical malpractice lawyer will help determine your legal options.

New Mexico Medical Malpractice

The New Mexico Medical Malpractice Act governs medical malpractice cases in the state. It sets out the statute of limitations, which is three years from the date of the incident, which means that you have three years from either the date of the first incident or the date you discovered you were harmed. Your lawyer will help you understand your deadlines to file a claim.

Before you file a suit in court, you must submit a written application to the New Mexico Medical Review Commission, which includes the details of your allegations, and grant the New Mexico Medical Malpractice Review Board permission to review relevant medical records.

The New Mexico Medical Malpractice Act also sets a cap on damages you can receive at $600,000 unless the costs of ongoing rehabilitation and medical care exceed this amount. Your lawyer will explain a few other stipulations pertaining to your case.

Have you experienced therapist malpractice?

If you have been abused by your therapist or feel that you received inadequate or neglectful medical care, we can help. Hunt Law is a legal team of medical malpractice specialists helping clients in northern New Mexico and Las Vegas, NM. Call us today for a confidential consultation about your case.

Children going to school

Public vs. Private Schools: Who’s Responsible If Your Child Is Hurt?

No parent wants to hear that their child was hurt at school, whether it’s an accident on the playground, an incident of bullying, or even an allergic reaction. If you’re like most parents, you may wonder what your legal recourse is if your child has been injured at their public or private school. 

While not legally an insurer of your student’s safety, your child’s school does have a duty to exercise reasonable supervision and care to ensure the safety of its students.

It’s important to note that supervision and safety expectations apply to both public and private schools. Just because a school is privately owned and operated doesn’t mean it’s outside of legal regulations that apply to children in its care.  

For example, any school has a duty to supervise the children outside of the classroom, during lunch and recess, or before or after school hours while the children are on school property. This duty of care exists for both public and private institutions.

State intervention in the regulation of private schools is minimal, but the state does require a certain degree of regulation to ensure the safety of children attending private schools. Therefore, the state may conduct an investigation when complaints or concerns arise regarding the school’s ability to keep students safe.

What are schools responsible for providing?

A duty of reasonable care is expected from both public and private schools. Some examples of the care and supervision required are:

  • Lunch and recess supervision
  • Supervision when children are playing in groups
  • Providing clean, safe facilities
  • Ensuring proper maintenance of school grounds to prevent injury and illness
  • Hiring qualified, competent teachers, coaches, and support staff 

However, the duty to supervise only applies to situations where injuries are foreseeable. For example, if an injury isn’t likely to occur in a particular scenario, the school probably wouldn’t be liable.

Is a school liable for the actions of other students?

Who is liable for an injury that another student caused can be a complicated question and one of the reasons you need an experienced personal injury lawyer who understands how to assign liability. 

Each injury and circumstances are different. Who is liable will depend on where the injury happened and whether any supervising staff members were negligent or not fulfilling their duties.

Let’s say, for example, that a school knows about a problem with a bully on its premises, but the school fails to prevent the bully from harming other students. The school may be liable for any injuries other students receive from the bully. 

Or, if certain areas in the school are known for fighting, such as in the parking lot or a school bathroom, and the school doesn’t implement safety measures, then the school may be liable for injuries from these fights.

What are some things I can sue a private school for?

You can sue both public and private schools for the same things, such as injuries, negligence, or exposure to toxic substances.

However, there’s one type of suit against a private school that doesn’t arise at a public school: tuition disputes. Tuition disputes are civil matters and not personal injury cases, but our legal team has experience with those as well. 

Do you have a claim against your child’s school?

If you believe that your child was injured and their school could have taken steps to prevent it, we can help. 

Hunt Law of Northern New Mexico has a personal injury attorney ready to fight for you. We have the knowledge and tenacity you need to craft and file a strong claim. 

Call us today to discuss the circumstances of your case.

Gas explosion

5 Causes of Gas Explosions in New Mexico (and How to Protect Yourself)

Some job sites are by nature more dangerous than others, especially the oil and gas rigs and refineries of New Mexico. 

Gas explosions, and the catastrophic injuries that result, can be all too common. However, oil and gas workers aren’t the only ones that should be careful about the possibility of a gas explosion.

There are several causes of New Mexico gas explosions. It’s important to know how to protect yourself and what to do if you or a loved one have been injured in a gas explosion accident.

What are 5 common causes of workplace fires and explosions?

The Industrial Safety and Hygiene News Magazine lists these five causes as the most common for potential fires and explosions:

  1. Electrical hazards, such as overloaded sockets or exposed wiring
  2. Poorly maintained vehicles
  3. Hot work, such as welding or other work that causes sparks around gas
  4. Friction and heat built up in machinery
  5. Improper storage of gas and other flammable liquids

Sometimes, the job site itself is unsafe. Employees should take proper precautions when working around natural gas and always use safety equipment. However, your employer or the rig owner also must provide a safe working environment, including taking these steps:

  • Surveying the site for potential hazards
  • Establishing and communicating fire prevention and emergency procedures
  • Training employees properly, especially for safety protocols
  • Regularly inspecting equipment and ensuring proper maintenance

Even if your employer follows all OSHA safety guidelines, one or two reckless individuals can endanger the entire workforce. 

The Bureau of Labor Statistics noted that 115 people were killed in workplace explosions and fires in 2018, and many more were seriously injured. Many of these accidents were preventable.

Explosions Caused by Faulty Machinery

Sometimes, gas explosions occur because of defective machinery, which neither employers nor employees could foresee or be responsible for. 

If your heavy machinery had a flaw in its design during its manufacturing process that subsequently led to an explosion, the Hunt Law legal team could help. We’ll pursue a faulty product lawsuit against the manufacturer on your behalf.

Oil Rig and Gas Explosions

Explosions are an inherent risk in the oil and gas industry due to the combination of heavy machinery and flammable materials. Many explosions involving oil and gas can occur due to:

  • Improper ventilation systems and accumulation of hazardous fumes
  • Defective equipment batteries, pipelines, hoses, or pipes
  • Equipment failure

An oil rig or gas explosion causes catastrophic injuries and can kill or seriously maim many workers.

What are common gas explosion injuries? 

Fires or explosions can result in life-altering injuries, including:

  • Concussions or traumatic brain injury (TBI)
  • Broken bones and fractures
  • Crush injuries
  • Cuts, lacerations, and contusions
  • Electrocution
  • Loss of hearing or vision
  • Spinal cord or neck injuries
  • Toxic chemical exposure

Sometimes, the injury may be fatal.

What kind of damages am I entitled to after a gas explosion?

Your personal injury lawyer will file a claim on your behalf if you’ve been injured due to a workplace gas explosion. 

We can claim current and future medical expenses, pain and suffering, and even wrongful death. If your injuries are life-altering, you may be entitled to compensation for a diminished quality of life and reduced earning potential.

Hunt Law – A Legal Team that Makes a Difference

Have you or someone you love been injured or killed due to a gas explosion? We can help. 

Hunt Law is a personal injury firm with years of experience representing the interests of people just like you. Our service areas include Northern New Mexico: Santa Fe, Albuquerque, Rio Rancho, Raton, Roswell, Los Alamos, and Las Vegas, NM. 

We fight for your rights and help you get the settlement you deserve. Call us today for a free consultation about your case.

medical malpractice

Meeting with a Malpractice Attorney? 4 Tips to Prepare

If you or someone you love has suffered from medical malpractice or misdiagnosis, you may be able to file a claim for damages. The first step is a free consultation with a reliable New Mexico malpractice attorney, like the team at Hunt Law. 

However, it’s best to be prepared to make the most of your consultation session and ensure that your legal team has all of the information they need to give you an accurate assessment of your options.

Here are four tips to help you prepare for your first meeting with your medical malpractice attorney.

1. Provide as Many Details as Possible

It’s important to share as much information as possible so that your medical malpractice lawyer understands the details of your case. Try your best to explain events in chronological order, and if you can, write notes before you come to your appointment.

It’s okay to feel emotional when talking about the pain and suffering you or your loved one endured because you didn’t get the medical care you needed. However, try to focus on the facts and refrain from bad-mouthing the doctors or nurses.

2. Ask Important Questions

No question is a bad question, and your malpractice lawyer knows that the process can be confusing. Feel free to ask the Hunt Law team anything! However, your consultation is a two-way interview, so make sure that you hire a lawyer with experience. You want a capable attorney to lead you through this process.

Some good questions to ask are:

  • How many cases like mine have you handled?
  • How long have you specialized in malpractice cases?
  • What are some of the settlements and cases you’ve won?
  • What can I expect from the lawsuit process?
  • How are your fees assessed?

Many people may settle quickly in medical malpractice cases, thinking that hiring a lawyer is too expensive. 

However, many personal injury attorneys work on a contingency fee basis, which means that you typically won’t pay attorney’s fees unless your case is settled or won.

3. Bring All Relevant Documents

Your medical records and any emails or records of phone conversations are all part of the evidence that your medical misdiagnosis lawyer uses to prove your claim. Bring all relevant information to the consultation so that your lawyer can fully understand your circumstances.

You should bring:

  • All medical records
  • X-rays, diagnostic images, and any other photos or videos of your condition
  • All medical bills and insurance information
  • Paycheck stubs, as you may be reimbursed for time you missed at work

Don’t be shy about showing your lawyer your private medical information. They need to understand what happened to best pursue your claim. Additionally, all consultations with a lawyer are confidential and private. 

Medical malpractice can affect all areas of your life, from your physical health to your ability to enjoy your favorite activities and even your career prospects.

4. Be Honest

Tell your lawyer the truth, and don’t be afraid to hold anything back. Your malpractice attorney crafts the best defense when they have all the facts. 

Even if you don’t “look like the good guy” or feel like the misdiagnosis was your fault, it’s your lawyer’s job to advocate for you — no matter your circumstances. If you withhold information and there’s a last-minute surprise at your trial, it can derail your claim.

Do you need legal representation for your malpractice claim?

If you need reliable, trustworthy, and successful legal representation, call the team at Hunt Law. 

We specialize in helping people just like you get the settlement they deserve after a misdiagnosis or medical malpractice. We offer services in Northern New Mexico, including Santa Fe, Albuquerque, Rio Rancho, Raton, Roswell, Los Alamos, and Las Vegas.