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Richard Watts Morefield
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Richard Morefield’s Answers

34 total

  • Tort

    If a civil tort lawsuit is filed where the plaintiff seeks monetary compensation as part of the judgment, should the amount of the money be also included in the brief?

    Richard’s Answer

    I noticed that you are writing from Olathe, KS and the subject matter is "tort". I assume you are asking about a Kansas tort claim. The rule in Kansas is that if the claim is not a contract claim and if the amount demanded is over $75,000.00, the petition must state only that the amount is over $75,000.00. You are not permitted to state the actual amount demanded if it is over $75,000.00. If you are seeking less than $75,000.00, that amount can be stated in the petition. See, K.S.A. §60-208(a)(2). This is not legal advice.

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  • Can/Should my brother get a lawyer?

    My brother was riding passenger with his friend and they were T-boned by a 17 year old. The person who hit my brother and his friend was clearly speeding in a 20 MPH zone and the accident has been declared the 17 year olds fault. The 17 year old w...

    Richard’s Answer

    Your brother should hire a Kansas-licensed personal injury lawyer who has experience with traumatic brain injuries. Traumatic brain injuries are serious and it is important that your brother receive the proper evaluation and treatment. A lawyer who has experience with brain injury cases may be able to point your brother in the direction of top flight treating physicians. As others have mentioned, time is of the essence. You did not state when your brother was injured. There is a limited amount of time in which to file a lawsuit. It is also important to begin investigating the facts of the case while witnesses' memories are still fresh. Your brother should feel free to interview several attorneys to find one that he is comfortable with. The facts you describe sound like your brother has a case, but it takes much more information and evaluation for an attorney to tell you with certainty that your brother has a good case.

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  • Do I have a wrongful death case?

    My father passed away recently. A few weeks prior to his passing he had several stints put in. There seems to be quite a lot of confusion with my father's death.

    Richard’s Answer

    I am truly sorry to hear about your loss. Unfortunately, it is not possible to determine from the information you provided whether anyone committed malpractice or otherwise contributed to your father's death. You should talk with a medical malpractice attorney at your earliest opportunity and you should obtain copies of all medical records relating to your father's death. You can locate medical malpractice attorneys through Avvo.

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  • Preparation for Mediation

    I have an attorney. For my own personal reference, is there a website or guide to preparing yourself for post judgment divorce mediation?

    Richard’s Answer

    As mentioned above, Mediate.com has many articles. You should also search Google for "mediation preparation" although many of the articles will relate to a lawyer's preparation for mediation. As a lawyer who helps clients in mediation and a trained mediator, I believe that your lawyer should spend time with you explaining the process and helping you understand the possible outcomes for the process. Your best chance of success in mediation comes if both you and your lawyer have carefully evaluated your case and potential outcomes.

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  • Filing a claim on my own, and having been made an offer that seems unfair, what can I do or say to get another offer?

    Just having stepped off the public bus and preparing to cross the street, I tripped and fell into the street over the sidewalk that was raised about 2-3 inches and about 4-5 yards long. There was no sign to indicate such condition.

    Richard’s Answer

    I encourage you to contact a Missouri licensed personal injury lawyer as soon as possible, preferably one located near Kansas City. There is not enough information here to respond directly to your question. However, I would discourage you from spending much time negotiating because of the short time you have to give written notice to the city about a potentially defective street or sidewalk. There is a requirement that you give notice to the mayor within 90 days of your accident if you are making a claim arising out of any defect in the condition of any street or sidewalk in the city. If you do not give the appropriate notice in time, your claim can be barred. Unfortunately, you have not provided enough information for me to tell you for certain when you must give notice or whether this requirement definitely applies to you. Please contact an attorney as soon as possible to protect your rights.

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  • The Olivette Police would not give me the other drivers info because they said he worked for the Missouri Hwy Dept.. Help me pl

    I was driving in a construction zone the driver was standing on the edge of his truck and flung the door open as I was approaching . His door tore my mirror off and scratch my glass and damage my door. This was on the passengers side. . I jerked ...

    Richard’s Answer

    The information you need should be in the police report. The Olivette or Creve Coeur police department should be able to give you information on how to obtain the report. Be certain to keep the contact information for any witnesses.

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  • I was in an auto accident over a year ago. I hired, in my opinion, a weak, wishy washy lawyer.

    I signed a contract, I assume is standard issue. But because, odviously, I am not a lawyer, it was very confusing. The lawyer has not started on my case as far as I know. Can I fire or drop the case.

    Richard’s Answer

    The quick, short answer is that you can fire your lawyer, although he or she will have a lien against your recovery for the fair value of the work he or she performed.

    The longer answer is that you should have a discussion with your lawyer and find out what he or she has done or is doing on your case. Ask for specifics. The reason I recommend this is that in injury cases, lawyers spend a significant amount of time spent gathering medical records and other information. It is possible that your lawyer is working hard behind the scenes and you are making a wrong assumption about what has been done. On the other hand, if you don't like or trust your lawyer, or if your lawyer isn't getting the job done, you can and should find another lawyer. I strongly recommend you try to get more information from your lawyer before firing him or her. I wish you the best with your case.

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  • Do I have to sign a release stating my attorney can talk about my case to anyone he chooses?

    Getting ready to settle an insurance claim of which I am not happy but want out of the relationship with the attorney because he has done nothing positive throughout the entire ordeal. . Before he will release the funds he wants me to sign a relea...

    Richard’s Answer

    The short answer is "no". You don't have to agree to let your lawyer talk about your case with other people.

    It isn't clear from your question whether the case is settled or it is almost settled. If the case is settled and your attorney has the settlement funds in his trust account, he cannot refuse to provide you with your share of the settlement funds once the insurance company check has cleared. That would be unethical and could result in your lawyer getting in trouble with the Kansas Attorney Disciplinary Administrator. Your lawyer has an obligation to get your money into your hands.

    Your lawyer's desire to talk with people about your case is also a concern. Does he want to publicize the settlement because he thinks he got you a great settlement? If that is the case, you have several options. You call allow him to publicize the settlement, you can refuse to allow him to discuss the case, or you can restrict what he says. For example, if your settlement is substantial, you may not want everyone in the community knowing that you just received a substantial amount of money.

    If your case is not yet settled and you aren't sure the proposed settlement is fair, by all means, get a second opinion before accepting or rejecting the settlement offer.

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  • I fell in a light pole hole,they put in new poles across st from me where I mow ,and hurt my shoulder will need surgery.

    there were 2 old poles ,they put in 1 new pole in middle of the 2 and did not fill up old pole holes

    Richard’s Answer

    I am not completely clear about what your question is. If you are asking whether the company who was installing the poles or the property owner could be responsible for your injuries, the answer is "yes". There are many factors that go into whether or not you have a good case and there is not enough information to answer that question. I recommend you contact a lawyer who is licensed to practice law in Missouri rather than posting all of the details of your situation here. Some of the questions the lawyer will want answers to will include how long the hole remained unfilled, whether the hole was marked or barricaded and how visible the hole was to someone in your circumstance. The lawyer will also need to figure out who had responsibility for filling the hole - whether it was a utility company, a contractor or the city. If it was the city, there are some additional legal consideration that are involved.

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  • Physically harmed my physician at my work, HR complaint filed, should I do more?

    I work as a CT tech at a medical clinic. Dr I work with very violently and forcefully grabbed me under both arms forcing my head down to my chest and to the left, and yanked me up out of a tall office chair I was sitting in. My back popped very...

    Richard’s Answer

    You should contact a Missouri licensed personal injury lawyer as soon as possible. There may be more to your story, but this is not the place to post additional details. After sharing the details with a lawyer privately, you should also ask the lawyer whether it would be appropriate to file criminal charges. You also may have other claims that are not immediately apparent from the information you provided here. Good luck and please contact a lawyer sooner rather than later.

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