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W. Thomas Smith

W. Smith’s Legal Guides

20 total


  • SUGARMAN on Winter Fall-Down Injuries

    The Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court, on July 26, 2010, dramatically changed the rules of a landowner's liability for personal injuries caused by snow and ice. The Papadopoulos case put to rest the old Massachusetts rule that a victim injured by a slip and fall on snow or ice...

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  • The New Massachusetts Texting-while-Driving Law

    Massachusetts, on September 30, 2010, joins the growing list of states to ban texting while operating a motor vehicle. While the new Massachusetts cell phone use while driving law provides fines for violations, it will have implications for accidents caused by driving while text...

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  • Sexual Assault and Abuse – Can a company be liable for negligence in failing to prevent it?

    There are two basic fact patterns that lead to a finding of negligence on the part of a company for failing to prevent a sexual assault. In the first, the assault is committed by an employee of the company. The injured victim can prove that the company failed to take reasonable s...

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  • Sexual Assault and Abuse – Is the employer legally liable for an employee-perpetrator’s crimes?

    The general rule in Massachusetts law is that an employer is not liable for the intentional acts (in this case the crime of sexual assault or rape) carried out by its employees. There are, however, a number of exceptions to this general rule which can be called upon in sexual ass...

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  • Tom Brady’s Accident and Massachusetts No-Fault Law

    The recent news of Tom Brady's early morning car crash suggested a review of Massachusetts No-Fault law. Fortunately, Brady was uninjured and so would have no need to apply for No-Fault or Personal Injury Protection (PIP) benefits. Had he not been so lucky, he would have been sub...

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  • Sexual Assault and Abuse

    Being a victim of a sexual assault or sexual abuse has long-term consequences the severity of which often only become fully apparent years after the sexual assault or abuse occurs. The criminal side of the justice system is designed to determine the guilt of the assailant or abus...

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  • Does Liability Insurance Cover Sexual Assault and Abuse Settlements?

    Most insurance policies do not provide insurance against the intentional, wrongful acts of the insured. Thus, in a claim against the perpetrator of a sexual assault or abuse, his homeowner's, automobile or business insurance policy will not cover the claim. This means that a c...

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  • Infant Positioners and the Consumer Products Safety Commission (CPSC)

    The Consumer Products Safety Commission is the federal agency charged with "...protecting the public from unreasonable risks of serious injury or death from thousands of types of consumer products..." While CPSC has jurisdiction over consumer products generally, historically it h...

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  • Sexual Assault and Abuse Emotional Injuries

    Sexual Assault and Abuse Emotional Injuries - How does the victim prove her/his injury where the harm suffered is most frequently emotional trauma? Personal injury cases most frequently involve physical injuries - bone fractures, burns, lacerations, for example. The emotional inj...

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  • Gas Explosion Destroys Home – What’s Fair Property Damage Compensation?

    It happens too frequently in the Boston area: the gas company or a contractor carelessly causes a gas leak with the resulting destruction of a home or business. If luck prevails, no one is killed or injured. The gas explosion in Readville of November 3, 2010 is just such an event...

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