Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Court Allows Injured Workers to Stack Disability Payments

The WI Supreme Court ruled that the amount of disability payments a worker receives may be increased if they require multiple surgeries for the same injury. A DamierChrysler employee who requires two knee surgeries for the same injury could earn double his permanent partial disability. The company argued that such awards could not be stacked, but the court upheld a Labor and Industry Review Commission ruling to increase the employee's disability payments. The Associated Press, Ft. Worth Star Telegram 02/02/2007
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Ft. Worth Star Telegram

Tort Reform Group Fails to Disclose Source of Funding

The American Tort Reform Association (ATRA) and the American Justice Partnership, both business-friendly groups that gave $785,000 into Illinois politics this year, appear to have violated the state's campaign finance laws.

The groups contributed directly to a Republican candidate and did not file a campaign finance report nor did they file as nonprofit organizations. A spokesman for an election watchdog group says some large donations, including $1.8 million from the U.S. Chamber's Institute for Legal Reform, were made directly to the Republican Party and did not have to be reported.

In 2004, a contentious race for the Illinois Supreme Court between the two leading candidates set a national record of $9 million in campaign spending. Adam Jadhav, St. Louis Post Dispatch 02/02/2007 Read Article: St. Louis Post Dispatch

Tornadoes Should Not Affect State Insurance Market

Despite having killed 20 residents, the tornadoes that recently struck Central Florida will not have serious effects on insurance rates. The state has suffered eight hurricanes since 2004 and just two hurricanes resulted in 2.7 million claims. In the past year, thousands of FL policyholders have had property insurance rates double or triple. Lynn Waddell, The New York Times 02/06/2007 Read Article: The New York Times

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Banks' Internet Security Ineffective

Researchers at Harvard and MIT have tested the effectiveness of site-authentication images, an Internet security measure used by some major financial service providers. Under the system, a customer should not enter his online passwords if his chosen image is not displayed on his login page. Of the 60 individuals observed in the study, 58 entered their passwords without the image.

Brad Stone, The New York Times 02/05/2007 Read Article: The New York Times

Insurers Refuse to Renew Policies along East Coast

Insurers are refusing to renew policies in Long Island and along the New York coastal area for fear of hurricanes.

Insurers claim they are "overexposed" in certain areas and are cutting back to avoid huge payouts. State law limits the yearly number of nonrenewals to 4% of a company's policies.

Richard J. Dalton, Newsday 02/02/2007
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Katrina Victims Can Sue Army Corps over 'Mister Go'

U.S. Federal District Judge Stanwood Duval has ruled that residents of areas flooded by water that traveled through a New Orleans navigation channel during Hurricane Katrina can sue the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

The judge ruled that the Mississippi River-Gulf Outlet (a/k/a MR GO) is a navigation channel, not a flood control project, and is, therefore, not covered by a federal law that provides immunity from damages due to failed flood-control projects. Reuters,, Reuters 02/02/2007

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