Archives for April 2015

Automobile Accidents in Atlanta

Unfortunately, car accidents happen every day. A majority of personal injury claims in the U.S. are the result of accidents involving a truck, car, or other motor vehicle. In Atlanta GA, during 2006 alone there were 130,912 injuries related to motor vehicle accidents.

Atlanta Auto InjuryWhen you’ve been involved in a car accident, you may need to hire a personal injury lawyer. Car accident lawyers can help you recover losses that incur from motor vehicle accident. Whether the injury is minor or more serious, you will need a lawyer to fight for the compensation you need to rehabilitate and to reimburse you for medical expenses, lost wages and other financial losses.

Accident lawyers can negotiate the red tape and legal procedures, shoulder the hefty amount of paperwork, and help manage many of the hassles associated with car wreck insurance claims. These problems only get worse if you are injured in a motor vehicle wreck.

Who Should You Hire?

Finding a lawyer to work on your behalf, however, can be a daunting task. Who can you trust, and how do you find them?

When looking for a personal injury accident attorney you should focus on the lawyer’s experience and commitment, as well as location and convenience. For example, your personal injury attorney should be well versed in personal injury law, transportation law, insurance law and dealing with insurance companies, and know how to properly prepare and settle a case like yours. Check each attorney’s background, track record, and references. Referrals from friends and family are a good place to start when looking for a lawyer. Online is another good resource, but make sure to check reviews for each lawyer you are considering. There are also several directories with lawyers that are quality-assured. Look at these and other sources to find a lawyer who can best help if you or your family has been injured in a motor vehicle accident.

The lawyers at Brownstein & Nguyen have an excellent track record, knowledge of the law and the experience to assist with personal injury, automobile accident, and truck wreck cases. We know how difficult it can be if you’ve been injured in a car or truck wreck, and we do everything we can to make the process easier. Use the contact form to the right to schedule a free consultation today.

Investment Fraud Basics in Atlanta GA

Investing always involves some risk. Unfortunately, the safest investments generally pay the smallest returns, while riskier investments pay the highest returns. Financial professionals will tell you that successful investing requires a full understanding of not just the potential rewards of an investment but all of the risks, as well.

Investment advisors are required to fully spell out the risks involved in a particular investment so you can make an informed and educated decision. They are also required to tailor your investments to your financial situation, and insure that you are investing in suitable investment vehicles. Unscrupulous advisors often will hide or skim over high risk details to take advantage of clients and generate fees for themselves.

Even the most trustworthy investment brokerage and other financial companies can have brokers or advisors who “churn” accounts by excessive buying and selling to run up commissions, or place clients in unsuitable investments. The savviest investor can be treated improperly, even at high end brokerage firms.

In addition to navigating the risks of legitimate investments, investors looking for good returns can also can fall prey to Ponzi schemes and other fraudulent investments. Perpetrators of these schemes often lie about the true nature of the investments, including risks and potential returns. Often, schemes are designed to bring in investor money with no intention of safeguarding or returning it.

Recently, a number of Atlanta investors lost millions of dollars in a fraudulent real estate investment.  These so called “reins,” or real estate investment notes, sounded like legitimate investments, but were in fact entirely fake.

Unfortunately, many financial scams appear valid and lucrative on the surface, enough to fool even educated investors. Creative scammers constantly invent new investment schemes to con unwary investors. Early investors may receive good returns, making it more difficult to uncover the truth before its too late. When a fraud unravels, almost always without warning, victims typically face the total loss of their investments.

If you have been harmed by a fraudulent investment, the experienced business fraud legal team at Brownstein and Nguyen can help you recover your losses. Our attorneys have recovered millions of dollars for drefrauded investors in the Atlanta area.

Brownstein and Nguyen wants to protect investors and can help you recover from improper financial dealings. Fill out our contact form on the right side of this page for more details regarding your possible case.

$2.3 Billion in Healthcare Whistleblower Recoveries

The False Claims Act is a federal law that was originally passed during the administration of President Abraham Lincoln. Over the past 150 years, the law has been revised several times.In the past few years, money recovered under the FCA has become big business for the government. In the fiscal year ending September 30, 2014, the federal government recovered a total of $5.7 billion. In addition, each year the number of new cases has increased. Much of the increase is as a result whistleblower lawsuits, also referred to as qui tam matters. Qui tam refers to an action brought by an individual who prosecutes a fraud case on behalf of the government and receives part of the final recovery. In 2014, whistleblowers received a total of $435 million, over $100 million more than in 2013.

Healthcare Fraud

Image via Flickr

The industry hit hardest by whistleblower lawsuits under the FCA in 2014 was banking with $3.1 billion in penalties and recoveries. But the healthcare industry continues to be a target for the government, to the tune of $2.3 billion recovered. This is the fifth year in a row that healthcare has paid back more than $2 billion under the FCA. Hospitals, pharmaceutical companies, medical device companies, physician groups, insurance companies, clinics – all sectors of health care have been the subject of FCA enforcement. For example, one pharmaceutical corporation alone had to pay $2.2 billion to settle allegations of kickbacks and promotion of off-label uses of medications in early 2014. A dialysis center had to pay $350 million in penalties for giving kickbacks for patient referrals. A medical device company paid out $30 million for marketing defective devices. A large home health service provider settled with the government for $150 million for charging Medicare for services not rendered, overcharging, and billing for medically unnecessary procedures.

With all this money being recovered, more and more whistleblowers are filing lawsuits. And whistleblowers are not just disgruntled current or former employees. In recent years, many qui tam matters have been initiated by competitors or consultants with inside information. Health care companies need to monitor their billing more carefully, and develop protocols to prevent the types of abuses for which the FCA collects billions.

Contact the law offices of Brownstein & Nguyen if you suspect that you might have information about healthcare or other government fraud. Our experienced team of legal professionals will answer questions and guide you in the steps to take as a potential whistleblower.

Distracted Driving in Atlanta

Many people believe that using a hands-free dash mounted device or earpiece while driving is safer than using a traditional hand-held cell phone. In fact, the National Safety Council (NSC) has found that “[e]ighty percent of American drivers believe hands-free devices are safer than using a handheld phone.” However, during April’s Distracted Driving Awareness Month the National Safety Council is undertaking a public education campaign to share research proving the brain is still distracted from driving while engaged in a hands-free conversation.Distracted Driving Accident

This is definitely something that everyone needs to be aware of. In 2013, over 3,100 individuals were killed in distracted driving crashes. In addition to fatalities, numerous critical and serious injuries associated with distracted driving occur each year. Common injuries from such crashes include broken bones, spinal injuries, and back and neck pain as a result of whiplash.

Commit to Safe Driving

The NSC suggests that all drivers commit to stepping beyond making the commitment to drive hands-free, and instead commit to driving cell phone free. The NSC #callskill campaign covers three important points for drivers to keep in mind when committing to refrain from cell phone and device use while driving:

  1. Eyes on the road

  2. Hands on the wheel

  3. Mind on driving

Unfortunately, because distracted driving is the cause of so many fatalities and serious injuries it is possible that you or someone you know may have been involved in a distracted driving accident, or might be at some point in the future. Atlanta personal injury attorneys Brownstein & Nguyen are experienced in representing automobile and truck accident cases in the Atlanta area. With over 20 years of personal injury representation, the reviews and testimonials of Brownstein & Nguyen speak for themselves. Contact the personal injury lawyers at Brownstein & Nguyen at (770) 458-9060 for a free review of your case.