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February 2016
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Alternative Dispute Resolution – Mediation

A very noticeable change in the handling of personal injury cases over the last three decades has been the willingness of both sides to engage in alternative dispute resolution. Even the Pre-Trial Order of the Massachusetts Superior Court asks about the parties’ willingness or amenability to alternative forms of dispute resolution. Generally that means mediation or arbitration. I have blogged primarily about mediations and I will blog a little about arbitrations over the course of the next few weeks. But let’s turn our attention once again to mediation. In this blog, I will focus on what you will hear from the mediator at the outset.

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The Client as the Primary Source

As a personal injury attorney, it is obviously necessary for me to have a complete and accurate understanding of my client’s injuries. How have the injuries affected my client? What exactly has he/she gone through in terms of pain and suffering? What is the true measure of loss of earning capacity? The source for learning detailed answers to these questions is from the client himself/ herself.

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Respondeat Superior and the Meaning of Latin Terms

Latin terms are commonly used in law and while they may sound fancy, I have to say that their doctrines are pretty straight-forward and pretty clear. The doctrine that I would like to speak about today is known as Respondeat Superior. Essentially it means that the employer is responsible for the actions of its employee in the course and scope of employment of that employee. It is interesting that when I have reviewed cases that have been prepared by younger lawyers, there seems to be an overemphasis on the notion of Respondeat Superior.

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The Problems with Pre-Settlement Funding

You will not find a shortage of companies that offer to loan you money on your case. I have seen them increasingly used in recent years. Having an injury can be a time-consuming, stressful and money-sapping process, especially if the client is out of work. As a result, businesses have been created with the idea of advancing money to injured people but, of course, fully expecting to get that money back plus interest and fees. It’s the “plus interest and fees” that need close examination.

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  • The Boston firm of Feinberg & Alban, P.C. specializes its practice in the area of personal injury.

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