Tennessee Legal Blog

Guidance regarding mass torts claims

When a Tennessee consumer suffers harm because of a third party, it may be appropriate for the injured party to seek appropriate legal recourse through a civil claim. In some cases, many consumers have experienced the same thing as a result of a particular product, and they may be able to pursue compensation in a group effort, called a mass torts claim. Mass torts allow consumers to have a stronger voice and a higher chance of securing a just and appropriate outcome.

Mass torts cases can result from harmful products, such as dangerous medication or medical product. They can also come from cases related to issues such as mishandling employee benefits, production of dangerous consumer products, violation of consumer protection acts and more. One person's claim may be too expensive or complex to litigate alone, but a mass torts claim gives consumers a chance to litigate together and move forward with a joint claim based upon substantially similar allegations of negligence.

The symptoms and causes of mesothelioma

Mesothelioma is an aggressive form of cancer that develops in the thin lining of organs. The cancer commonly starts in the linings of the lungs and can spread to other organs such as the abdomen.

If you are worried that you or a loved one has mesothelioma, make sure that you have a good understanding of the symptoms as well as the known causes. It's always important that you seek advice from a medical professional so that they can make a full assessment.

Wage and hour disputes leads to payout for employees

Tennessee employees deserve payment for hours worked, and eligible employees deserve appropriate overtime pay for anytime they work over their normal 40-hour workweek. When a company engages in unfair pay practices and fails to pay workers what they deserve, it may result in wage and hour disputes. One company recently paid employees a settlement to cover lost wages and unpaid overtime.

When employees experience this type of unacceptable treatment, it could be grounds to move forward with legal action. The company can also face expensive fines for violating labor laws and federal pay standards. This roofing company was ordered to pay $48,206 to almost 70 employees, and it also had to pay thousands of dollars in fines for violating child labor laws.

Wage-and-hour disputes after resort under pays its employees

For individuals who work in the hospitality industry in Tennessee, they know how difficult it is to work in this field. Customers can be demanding, the hours are long and the work is hard. At the very least, they should be receiving fair pay for the hours they work, including overtime hours. Unfortunately, that is not always the case, as illustrated by wage-and-hour disputes in another state that resulted in a finding that a resort underpaid its workers by $46,000.

A closer look at what happened at this resort reveals that this employer violated federal labor laws more than 500 times. The resort also underpaid workers by tens of thousands of dollars, ultimately leading into an in-depth, years-long investigation into the company's operations. The findings were troubling, including violations of laws that require record-keeping of workers who are under the age of 18.

Mass torts claims for asbestos may include cosmetics

Many in Tennessee may believe that asbestos is something that does not affect them. They may live in newer homes and work in modern buildings, so they are not at risk of contamination from the carcinogenic particles in materials containing asbestos. What the mass torts cases related to talcum powder have shown is that asbestos and the diseases related to it may be in the most seemingly innocent places.

Recent tests that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration commissioned have confirmed that about 20% of talc-based cosmetics contain asbestos. The study came about in the wake of the recent talcum powder scares, and consumer advocates worried that other products, particularly those marketed to children, may contain the deadly substance. The findings prompted the introduction of legislation requiring strict testing of any play cosmetics marketed to children.

Fighting for beneficial resolution to wage and hour disputes

Employers are responsible for paying workers fairly. This means properly classifying them properly and paying for overtime hours worked. Some Tennessee employers engage in unfair pay practices, and employees end up with less money than they've rightfully earned. Wage and hour disputes can be complicated, and underpaid employees may have to resort to legal action in order to secure fair compensation.

Wage and hour violations can encompass a wide range of improper pay practices, and employees may not be aware that they are victims. One common way this happens is failing to pay employees properly for overtime hours. Employees classified as nonexempt are eligible for time and a half for every hour worked over the standard 40 hours per week. Another way that employers avoid paying employees the full amount is by requiring or implying that employees have to do certain tasks off the clock.

Mesothelioma survival rates depend on spread

The survival rate for those with malignant pleural mesothelioma depends on a host of factors. For instance, age is often a big part of the equation, especially as this is a disease that targets older patients more than younger ones. Are these individuals more likely to have a lower survival rate due to the natural process of aging and weakening of the body that comes with it? This is just one of many questions to ask when reading your way through the numbers -- especially if you have just gotten a diagnosis and you want to consider your own outlook.

One thing that you must consider is whether or not the disease has spread. The American Cancer Society notes that the spread of malignant pleural mesothelioma plays a large role in the survival rates, as well, and they divide it into three main categories. They are as follows:

  • Localized cancer: This means that, while present, the cancer has not moved beyond the pleura and is limited to that area.
  • Regional: While the cancer has spread to some degree, the spread is not dramatic. It may have moved to lymph nodes or other structures in the body that are nearby.
  • Distance: Unfortunately, the cancer has really begun to move through the body. It may have reached structures that are quite far away from its point of origin, such as the opposite pleura, the bones or the liver.

Wage and hour disputes involving Tennessee music studio

One well-known music studio in Tennessee is facing allegations of illegal business practices. Blackbird Studios, run by country singer Martina McBride and her husband, is dealing with a lawsuit filed by a former employee for mistreatment of unpaid interns, illegal firing practices and other employment matters. Wage and hour disputes, illegal termination and questionable business practices can be grounds for employees to take legal action against employers. 

The McBrides supposedly required unpaid interns to do inappropriate tasks, such as pick up groceries, pick up food orders and even check for intruders. The former operations manager reported these conditions to authorities, after which he was fired. The manager also claims the McBrides regularly berated the interns, yelling at them for incomplete tasks. One example was Mr. McBride purportedly screaming at an intern over a salad ordered for Martina McBride's lunch.

School employees may have to engage in wage and hour disputes

School employees sometimes work odd hours and have nontraditional schedules as their work may depend on when school is session. Some types of school district employees might find it necessary to engage in wage and hour disputes when they learn they are not receiving fair pay for hours worked. Recently, a former school district employee filed a lawsuit for unpaid overtime, and she was successful in her efforts.

Tennessee school employees and those who work for the district may find themselves victims of unfair pay practices. This often takes place by failing to pay employees for overtime hours worked. In this specific case, the district employee says she worked over 3,000 overtime hours for which she did not get paid. This took place over a period of three years.

Apple employees initiated wage and hour disputes with employer

Tennessee employees have the right to expect fair pay for the hours they work. This means all of the time they are technically on the clock, including time spent going through company security measures. Apple employees recently initiated wage and hour disputes against their employer for failing to pay them for time spent going through bag checks, which was a required security measure for all company employees.

Company policy requires that hourly workers submit to a bag check when leaving the building. They must also submit to searches of devices and packages they are taking with them as well. A court recently ruled that when workers go through this process, they are technically still under the control of Apple, which means they should be paid for this time. While these checks happen after clocking out, they are mandatory, and workers can face consequences if they don't submit. 

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