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Back to School – Tips to Avoid Accidents

School is back in session. While this is an exciting time of year, it can also be a dangerous one on the roads, especially country roads throughout East Texas. The National Safety Council says that there is an uptick in the number of car accidents this time of year because kids are headed back to school. This includes new teen drivers who may not have very much experience operating a car. These drivers are often times new and inexperienced, so its good to practice a little bit of extra caution. “They struggle judging gaps in traffic, driv

ing the right speed for conditions and turning safely, among other things.”
Jeff Weinstein Law suggests a few tips to remember to help prevent accidents now that school is back in session.
  • Don’t block crosswalks
  • Never pass a vehicle stopped for pedestrians
  • Never pass a bus loading or unloading children
  • Wear your seat belt
  • Don’t Text and Drive
While these tips are good to remember now that school is starting back, they are even better to remember every time you get in the car.
Jeff Weinstein Law wishes everyone good luck starting back to school this fall.

Three reasons I worked to become the Social Media Attorney

Here’s a secret: A lot of attorneys don’t like social media.

It’s true. The legal industry isn’t a big fan of outlets such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, and big law firms are particularly afraid of going social

Kevin O’Keefe wrote: “Despite the business studies and literature supporting the value of social to large enterprises, most large law firm leaders have chosen to opt out of learning about social, let alone use it.”

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Joseph King indicted

Joseph King

Joseph Daniel King of Tyler has been indicted for Possession of Controlled Substance and Criminally Negligent Homicide by the Henderson County Grand Jury in connection with the crash that killed Charles Gifford.

Mr. Gifford, 75, was killed early May 9 when his pickup swerved off the road, through a chain link fence and into a tree after being struck from behind by King.

You can find the indictment list here.

The Gifford family has given Weinstein Law permission to document their story in the hopes that it may help others in the same situation. Read all of the stories here.

Hospital lien filed in connection with Gifford tragedy

Charles Gifford and his namesake granddaughter, Charley.

The first legal document has been filed with the courts in connection with the tragic death of Charles Gifford, but it didn’t come from the insurance company or the victim’s family.

It came from the hospital.

Mr. Gifford, 75, was killed early May 9 when his pickup swerved off the road, through a chain link fence and into a tree after being struck from behind by Joseph King. King, 35, was arrested and charged with Negligent Criminal Homicide, Possession of a Controlled Substance, and Possession of Marijuana in connection with the crash.

On May 26, the hospital where Mr. Gifford was taken following the crash filed a lien against any liability claim — meaning any insurance money Mr. Gifford’s family receives.

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King was dozing behind the wheel right before crash killing Mr. Gifford

Charles Gifford died because Joseph King couldn’t keep his eyes open — at least that’s how it looks, according to the police report.

Mr. Gifford, 75, was killed early May 9 when his pickup careened off the road, through a chain link fence and into a tree after being struck from behind by King.

According to the police report, King told officers he took the drug Klonopin four hours before the crash and “felt himself dozing off and waking up as he drove.”

In addition to drug use intoxication, the police report lists King’s “failure to control speed” as a contributing factor in the crash.

King was arrested and charged with Negligent Criminal Homicide, Possession of a Controlled Substance, and Possession of Marijuana in connection wth the crash.

Mr. Gifford’s family was left to pick up the pieces and grieve … and to prove their pain to the insurance company.

Despite the mounting evidence of what happened, King’s insurance company has placed the burden on Mr. Gifford’s family to prove what killed their loved one.

In a letter, the insurance company wrote: “… we will need several items to assess the extent of your injuries and fully evaluate your claim. I have enclosed a Medical Authorization Form and Provider List so we can request the medical bills and treatment notes associated with this accident. Please review these forms and complete them where indicated. Return them to the address listed on the top of this page.”

An adjuster for the insurance company also told Mr. Gifford’s family members that King was getting a divorce.

“You’re supposed to feel sorry for (King’s wife),” said attorney Jeff Weinstein, who is representing the Gifford family.

Weinstein explained that King doesn’t own the truck he was driving in the crash, his wife does. King is potentially negligent for causing the wreck. His wife is potentially negligent for entrusting the vehicle to him.”

“My guess is the spin at the insurance company will be that there’s harm on both sides so the Giffords should feel sorry for poor Mrs. King having to be married to Mr. King,” said Weinstein. “The spin doctors are at work right now.”

The Gifford family has given Weinstein Law permission to document their story in the hopes that it may help others in the same situation. Read all of the stories here.

Charles Gifford’s Story: The Claims Letter

Charles Gifford and his namesake granddaughter, Charley.

Charles Gifford, 75, was killed last month in a car crash that wasn’t his fault.

He and his dog were taking a drive along State Highway 31 when a pickup truck being driven too fast slammed into him, causing Mr. Gifford’s truck to leave the road and crash into a tree. He was pronounced dead at the hospital.

The driver of the other pickup — Joseph King, 35, of Tyler — currently sits in Henderson County Jail charged with Negligent Criminal Homicide, Possession of a Controlled Substance, and Possession of Marijuana.

That day … the worst day for Mr. Gifford’s family … was Tuesday, May 9.

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Our Constitutional rights are in danger

The way lawmakers in Washington view our Constitutional rights is funny. One day they will bang the table saying we can’t allow the slightest erosion in what our forefathers gave us and the next day they will help big business blatantly steal the Constitution.

Actually, I don’t think this is funny at all. I think it is frightening because it appears our rights are for sale to the highest bidder.

Right now, Congress is trying to pass a law that would limit our ability to hold pharmaceutical companies responsible for hurting people with dangerous drugs or medical devices.

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