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Las Vegas Litigation Law Blog

Pros and cons of lump-sum construction contracts

Construction contracts for Nevada projects can be more complex than they seem, especially when something goes wrong as part of the process. One of the most commonly-used types is the lump sum contract. They may include some kinds of contingencies or allowances, but they generally include a payment of one lump sum for one completed scope of work. While these contracts may seem simple at first glance, complications can develop later on.

One reason why many companies prefer this type of contract is because they are "closed book" deals, in that the contractor sets a price and then handles expenses. If the contractor is able to make additional savings while adhering to the contract's demands, it has the right to keep the difference. This varies from a cost-plus agreement, in which the contractor's books can be reviewed by the owner, and the contractor is entitled to a sum above the costs of completing the project. By completing this type of construction contract, the owner establishes a budget line and can be certain of the amount it will pay for the finished job.

Wrecks involving vehicles and pedestrians are rising in the U.S.

When it comes to statistics in California motor vehicle accident-related deaths, 24 percent of the fatalities in the state are pedestrians. In fact, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety(IIHS) recently reported that nationwide pedestrians killed in vehicle crashes soared by 46 percent between 2009 and 2016. The National Transportation Safety Board also weighed in on the subject, reporting that an average of 16 pedestrians are killed daily in this country.

During 2016 and 2017, over 40,000 fatalities occurred on the nation's highways for each year. There are a multitude of reasons blamed for the staggering numbers from electronic device distractions to speed limit increases on the roadways. There also seems to be an upsurge in larger and heavier passenger vehicles, and when single car accidents kill a pedestrian, the vehicle is often a large SUV or one with a greater than average horsepower.

Obtaining an SBA loan

Many entrepreneurs in Nevada use federal Small Business Administration loans to get their businesses running. There are few limitations on what type of businesses are eligible to qualify for SBA loans. However, it is important for borrowers to understand how this type of loan works when they apply.

The Small Business Administration does not directly finance these loans. Instead, the SBA backs lenders who offer this type of loan when eligibility criteria are met. Small business owners can borrow anywhere from $500 to $5.5 million and use the money for a variety of purposes, including real estate transactions and working capital.

Car accident deaths decline, except in large truck cases

Data reported from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's Fatality Analysis Reporting System indicates that the number of traffic deaths related to most types of vehicles dropped between 2016 and 2017. The only vehicle type that had an increase in the number of traffic fatalities was large trucks. Nevada accident victims might be able to recover for damages.

The number of people who died in passenger vehicle crashes, including passenger cars and light trucks, was 23,877 in 2016 and 23,551 in 2017, a drop of 1.4 percent. Motorcycle accident fatalities dropped by 3.1 percent, from 5,337 in 2016 to 5,172 in 2017. The number of pedestrians killed in crashes was also down from 6,080 in 2016 to 5,977 in 2017, and there was an 8.1 percent decline in the number of bicyclist fatalities.

Researchers identify factors linked to TBI deaths

Traumatic brain injuries are a frequent form of head injury and can affect everyone from players of contact sports to the victims of car and truck crashes. Nevada residents should know that TBIs often end in death and that the factors linked to these deaths were previously unknown. In September, though, the Journal of Head Trauma Rehabilitation published a report detailing several physical, cognitive and psychosocial factors.

The research team included investigators from five regional TBI Model Systems. These model system researchers analyzed data in the TBI Model System National Data and Statistical Center and identified 1,163 chronic TBI sufferers aged 16 and older who died from their injury. They also identified 10,839 matched controls.

Drivers may be overestimating car safety tech, says AAA

Nevada drivers with safety tech like blind-spot monitoring and adaptive cruise control may want to ask themselves if they are relying too much on these features. According to a report from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, many do not understand the limitations of their car safety tech and thus put a dangerous amount of trust in it.

This leads to risky driving behaviors. For example, 80 percent of study respondents with blind-spot monitoring overestimate its ability to detect fast-approaching vehicles, bicyclists and pedestrians, and 20 percent never look for oncoming vehicles when changing lanes. Nearly 30 percent of those with adaptive cruise control say that when this safety feature is on, they engage in other activities -- in other words, driving distracted.

Avoiding slip-and-fall accidents

Falls are a common cause of injuries in Nevada. In regard to workplace accidents, falls from a height are two to three times more expensive in terms of costs than falls on a level surface. Even a fall from a couple feet can result in life-changing injuries. However, there are several ways to prevent falls from occurring.

Removing obstacles is one way to prevent falls. Clearing pathways by removing cords, mats and carpet that are not lying flat can eliminate major hazards. It is also important to clean up spills right away.

Car accidents rise 12.3 percent among mobile workers

In its 2018 Distracted Driving Report, the vehicle management and reimbursement platform Motus has linked the increase in smartphone ownership to the rise in auto accidents among the mobile workforce. Nevada residents should be familiar with this trend because mobile workers travel 49 percent more often than any other type of employee in the U.S.

Between 2013 and 2017, the number of mobile workers with smartphones jumped from 55 percent to 77 percent. In those five years, the number of auto accidents that such workers were in went up 12.3 percent from 5.7 million to 6.4 million. Every year, mobile workers travel 1,200 miles while distracted behind the wheel.

Planning for a successful business merger

Las Vegas companies may have high hopes for the profitability of their enterprises after a merger or an acquisition. However, from 70 to 80 percent of all such projects fail to live up to the anticipated value expected during the process. In most cases, this is not because the acquired firm was overvalued or unexpectedly weak. A poor strategy to integrate a new acquisition can cause businesses to lose out on profits and reaping the full benefits of their mergers. By introducing delays along the way, an unprepared business can sap the momentum spurred on by the acquisition. In order to achieve a successful transaction, advance strategic planning can be essential.

Many experts state that the first 100 days of a merger or acquisition is central to the long-term value proposition of the deal. Businesses should look to see valuation increasing during that time in order to avoid a stagnating situation. In these first three months, businesses can put in place a real plan for change. This plan should be devised before the transaction has closed so that it is ready to go when needed.

Safe driving tips for the rainy season in Nevada

Hydroplaning is one of the threats that drivers should always watch out for during the rainy season. When the tires encounter more water than they can handle, the water pressure in the front of the tire pushes water underneath, forming a thin layer of water between the tires and road. The tires, in effect, float above the road and thus lose traction. Hydroplaning can cause the car to skid or slide uncontrollably.

Drivers should know that the first 10 minutes of rainfall pose a greater risk than any other period. The reason is that the water immediately mixes with the oil residue on the road and creates a slippery surface, whereas after that 10-minute period the water will begin to wash away the residue. Not all the residue will disappear, so drivers must be careful at all times, slowing down and avoiding large puddles.

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