Monday, January 31, 2011

As stores pack up and leave, Richland Mall looks for a rebirth - WIS News 10 - Columbia, South Carolina |

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Friday, January 28, 2011

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Member of Congress Sues for 'Oral Injuries' From Errant Olive Pit in House cafe -

Monday, January 24, 2011

2011 Hospitality Law Conference in Houston to examine privacy, PR responses to adverse stories
‘Six-pack in one can’ targeted for ban in South Carolina by General Assembly -

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Now’s the Time to Create a Winter-Weather Policy — CBIA News
South Carolina businesses well-advised to install defibrillators | from

Monday, January 10, 2011

Effective Claims Management: Keeping Up, Staying Ahead

It's snowing today in Columbia. Our offices are closed. Nevertheless, I came in to work. I came in because losing a (non-vacation) working day creates that much more work when I return. When things get stacked up, it can be detrimental to a client's position.

I hope our clients think of me as being skilled. Moreover - and perhaps more importantly - I hope they think of me as hard-working. The secret to effective litigation of claims - especially in the retail/hospitality/entertainment context - is staying on top of things. Our clients are not in the buisness of litigation. They are in the business of running hotels or restaurants or department stores or whatever. To that end, they want their cases in a position for resolution - whether it be by settlement or dispositive motion or trial - ASAP. That means they don't want their matters dragged out. That means as their lawyers, we need to stay on top of things and keep their cases moving.

When the case comes in, don't delay: Do the investigation, serve and answer the discovery, make the necessary reports, and talk about the case with the clients on a frequent basis. Get them the answers ASAP to enable them to decide what they're going to do to resolve the case.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Inclement Weather & Retail/Hospitality Operations: Have A Plan In Place

Saturday, January 8, 2011

The Importance of Documenting Personnel Files for Claims Investigation Purposes

Most personal injury claims arising in the retail and hospitality contexts sound in negligence. South Carolina has a three year statute of limitations for negligence claims.

For whatever reason, many, many claims we defend are commenced shortly before the three year statute runs. Three years is a long time in the retail and hospitality world as it relates to associate turnover, especially as it pertains to hourly associates.

When we're brought in to defend a claim brought so close to the end of the SOL, key associates who were witnesses to the incident giving rise to the suit are often long gone. That means we frequently have to first solve the mystery of finding these former associates before we can even get going with the claim investigation. This process can be easy, hard, or impossible.

Our hunt for these associates is made so much easier when our clients have personnel files that have complete contact information, including information pertaining to next-of-kin. When p-files are appropriately documented, we find these folks. When we don't, we're left to using investigators to locate witnesses. This adds costs to the client. And sometimes, information for these associates can't be located. The inability to piece together contact information obviously can affect our ability to investigate and defend claims. This can really add costs to the client with regard to indemnity payments.

Document your personnel files with complete contact information. Update them when associate addresses, telephone numbers, etc. change. Undertaking this effort may pay dividends in the future when a claim arises that is dependent upon associate recollection/testimony.

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