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James Goldstein (Jim)
Works at Goldstein & Hayes, PC
Attended Emory University School of Law
Lives in Atlanta, Georgia
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Personal Injury Attorney / Medical Malpractice Lawyer
Birth Injury; Brain Injury; Cerebral Pasly; Drowning Accidents; Medical Malpractice; Product Liability; Trucking Accidents; Wrongful Death
  • Goldstein & Hayes, PC
    Partner, present
    Atlanta Personal Injury Lawyers specializing in birth injuries, brain injuries, cerebral palsy, medical malpractice, swimming pool drowning accidents / swimming pool drain entrapment, tractor-trailer wrecks and wrongful death.
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Atlanta, Georgia
New York
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3060 Peachtree Road, NW Suite 1000 Atlanta, GA 30305
Atlanta Personal Injury Attorney - Personal Injury Laywer - Medical Malpractice Attorney - Medical Malpractie Lawyer - Birth Injury Attorney - Brain Injury Lawyer - Cerebral Palsy Lawyer - Swimming Pool Accident Lawyer - Wrongful Death Attorney
Jim Goldstein is the senior partner at Goldstein & Hayes, PC, an Atlanta personal injury law firm with well over 100 million dollars in verdicts and recoveries in personal injury, medical malpractice and wrongful death cases.  Goldstein & Hayes lawyers focus on helping individuals and families who have suffered catastrophic personal injuries or wrongful death in claims such as: medical malpractice cases involving birth injuries, brain injuries, cerebral palsy; swimming pool accidents, drain entrapment and drowning; tractor-trailer and car wrecks; and incidents with dangerous products.  Goldstein & Hayes attorneys have extensive experience with child birth injury cases, brain injuries and spinal cord injuries. 

Jim is identified by Fortune Magazine as one of America’s Premier Lawyers (regularly featured on business shows), is one of The American Trial Lawyers Association’s Top 100 Georgia Trial Lawyers, is one of The National Trial Lawyers Association’s Top 100 Georgia Trial Lawyers and he maintains the highest rating for ethical standards and professional ability available from Martindale- Hubbell, a testament to the fact that Jim’s peers rank him at the highest level of professional excellence.   Jim serves on the 2013 Executive Committee for the National Trial Lawyers Association.
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The National Trial Lawyers Association's Top 100 Trial Lawyers; Bar Registry of Pre-Eminent Lawyers, Martindale Hubbell; Fortune Magazine's "America's Premier Lawyers"
  • Emory University School of Law
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Jim Goldstein, Jimmy Goldstein, James A. Goldstein


James Goldstein

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10 killed as truck, bus carrying students collide

ORLAND, Calif. —
A FedEx tractor-trailer crossed over a grassy median on a Northern California freeway and slammed into a bus carrying more than 40 high school students in an explosive crash that left 10 people dead, authorities said.
Among the students on the trip to visit Humboldt State University was Steven Clavijo, 18, a senior at West Ranch High in Santa Clarita, who planned to enroll in the school. Just as Clavijo was trying to catch a nap Thursday afternoon, he said he felt the big vehicle begin to shake from left to right and then he heard a loud boom.
"We knew we were in major trouble," he said.
Both the bus and semi driver were among those killed in the fiery crash, authorities said.
Many of those on the bus escaped through a window that someone had kicked open, Clavijo said, running for their lives to the other side of Interstate 5 before hearing an explosion and seeing the bus burst into flame.
Two more explosions soon followed, he said, and he and other survivors looked on knowing others were still trapped in an inferno.
Massive flames could be seen devouring both vehicles just after the crash, and clouds of smoke billowed into the sky until firefighters doused the fire, leaving behind scorched black hulks of metal. Bodies were draped in blankets inside the burned-out bus.
In addition to the drivers, three adult chaperones and five teenage students were killed in the crash, according to the California Highway Patrol. Their identities were not immediately released. The bus carried between 44 and 48 students, four chaperones and the driver, the patrol said.
Eric M. Weiss, a spokesman for the National Transportation Safety Board, said a multi-disciplinary team of highway crash experts left on a flight Friday morning for the crash scene.
"Every piece of paper associated with this will be looked at," Weiss said. "Our first priority (though) is to get out there as quickly as possible and to process the scene and talk to any witnesses."
The crash happened a little after 5:30 p.m. on the interstate near Orland, a small city about 100 miles north of Sacramento.
The bus was one of two that the admissions office at Humboldt State University had chartered to bring prospective students from Southern California to tour the Arcata campus, Humboldt's Vice President of Administrative Affairs Joyce Lopes said.
The bus was owned by Silverado Stages, a tour bus company based in San Luis Obispo. The company said in a statement on its website Thursday night that it was assisting authorities in gathering information.
"Our top priority is making sure that the injured are being cared for," the company said.
Humboldt State President Rollin Richmond issued a statement on the school's website. "Our hearts go out to those who have been affected, and we are here to support them, and their families, in any way possible," Richmond said.
The students came from a number of Southern California high schools and Humboldt spokesman Simon Chabel said the college was working to confirm where exactly they were from.
Los Angeles Unified School District spokesman Tom Waldman said 19 students from 15 schools were on the bus that crashed. District officials, including crisis counselors, left for the scene at about 5:30 a.m. Friday and Superintendent John Deasy was traveling back from a business trip to the East Coast. Crisis counselors were also being made available at district schools.
A high school senior from Alliance Renee & Meyer Luskin Academy High School in Los Angeles said she and a few of her classmates who were accepted to the university were invited to go on the tour.
Sabrina Garcia said the tour began Thursday, with buses taking students in Southern California on the ride to the campus for a three-day stay there. She said she decided to postpone the tour because she had a school project to complete.
"I was devastated when I heard about the crash, and relieved that I didn't attend," Garcia said. "I can't imagine how those kids feel. You think you're going somewhere safe with your school — and you end up in an accident."
A CHP dispatcher says the bus and truck were on opposite sides of the freeway when the truck crossed the median and slammed into the bus, causing an explosion and fire.
Investigators say the truck driver might have been trying to avoid a passenger car that was also involved in the crash, which shut down north- and south-bound traffic on the freeway.
"There was a small white sedan in front of the truck," Heitman said. "The FedEx vehicle did sideswipe the sedan before it crossed the median."
No one in the car was injured.
A first responder who helped set up a triage at the scene said 36 or 37 people received injuries ranging from minor to severe burns, broken legs and noses, and head lacerations.
"The victims were teenage kids. A lot of them were freaked out. They were shocked. They still couldn't grasp what happened," said Jason Wyman of the Orland Volunteer Fire Department.
Eleven people were taken to Enloe Medical Center in Chico, hospital officials said. Two of those patients were listed in critical condition Friday morning.
Five people were taken to Mercy Medical Center in Redding in fair condition. Two patients were taken to University of California, Davis, Medical Center in critical condition. One patient died at 10:30 p.m. Thursday bringing the death toll from nine to 10.
A nursing supervisor said three people were taken to Oroville Hospital in Oroville. She declined to describe their conditions, citing patient privacy laws.
Bonnie Kourvelas, a FedEx spokeswoman, said in a statement Thursday night: "Our thoughts and prayers are with everyone involved in the tragic accident on I-5 in California. We are cooperating fully with authorities as they investigate."
The American Red Cross set up a relief station at a Veterans Memorial Hall community center in Orland, about 5 miles from the crash site. Officer Joel Lynch said seven victims who were not hospitalized with injuries were staying the night with about 25 volunteers. A community member ordered pizza for the students.
A FedEx tractor-trailer crossed over a grassy median on a Northern California freeway and slammed into a bus carrying more than 40 high school students in an explosive crash that left 10 people dead, authorities said.
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Damages in Truck Accident Lawsuits

As the number of accidents involving large trucks (and lawsuits related to such accidents) continues to rise, potential plaintiffs often wonder how much compensation they can get if they sue over an accident. The amount of damages awarded by a judge or jury in a civil lawsuit depends on many factors, many of them somewhat subjective. The most important thing you can do to ensure a positive outcome is to talk to and hire a quality attorney who has experience litigating truck accident cases.

Factors that Determine Damages in Truck Accident Cases
In order to determine damages, courts will look at a variety of issues and factors, including the following:

1.    Medical bills: This is probably the most important factor that a court will take into account in calculating damages for a truck accident case. The court can look at bills and expenses for medical services such as doctors, hospital stays, emergency room treatment, ambulance fees, physical therapy, medical accessories, and in-home services. To be factored into the compensation, the plaintiff must show that the medical expenses resulted from the truck accident injury.

2.    Property damage: The court may factor in damage to your car and other property. You will probably need photographs or other evidence that demonstrate the extent of the damage to your car. Approved auto insurance claims may also benefit your case.

3.    Lost wages: The plaintiff may be able to recover damages that represent the amount of money he would have earned if he had not been injured from the time of the injury to the settlement of the case. The court may also consider lost future earning capacity from the injury.

4.    Pain and suffering: The court may consider past, present, and future physical pain suffered by the plaintiff as a result of the accident. The court will consider a number of factors when trying to put a money value on pain and suffering.

5.    Emotional distress: A court can take into account any emotional distress suffered by the plaintiff following the accident. The court will look at the intensity, duration, and underlying cause of the distress in determining damages.

6.    Punitive damages: If the defendant’s behavior was particularly egregious, the court may award damages that are specifically meant to punish the defendant. Punitive damages are fairly rare, but do occur in some truck accident cases.

7.    Comparative/contributory negligence laws: The degree of your own fault in the accident can factor into the damages the court awards to you. Many states have comparative or contributory negligence laws that can reduce or even bar damage awards, depending on how much the plaintiff was at fault.

What to Do if You Are Involved in a Truck Accident
If you or a loved one has been injured or killed in a truck accident, you should contact a personal injury attorney immediately. An attorney can review the facts of your case and determine whether you have a viable claim. If so, they can help you seek the compensation you deserve.
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A New York City woman has been awarded what could be the largest personal injury settlement in New York state history. According to a story in the Brooklyn Daily Eagle, the woman suffered brain damage, blindness, and a loss of communication skills after she was involved in a hit-and-run accident with a truck driver in 2008. The lawsuit was brought by the woman, 37, and her parents against the truck driver and his employer, and it settled for $22 million.
Employer Sued Under Theory of Vicarious Liability
The woman and her parents were able to sue Duane Reade, a New York City-based drug store chain, under the theory of vicarious liability. This theory can apply when the defendant who is found liable for an accident was acting within the scope of his employment. While it is fairly simple to hold a truck driver liable for an accident he caused, proving the vicarious liability of the (most likely wealthier) employer can be much more challenging.
In order for an employer to be liable for an employee’s negligence under vicarious liability, one of the following three conditions must be met:
1.    The injury occurred when the employee was on the clock with the employer;
2.    The injury occurred while the employee was performing an activity the employer hired him to perform; or
3.    The employer benefitted in some way from the activity that the employee was performing at the time of the injury.
While the attorneys for both sides have agreed on the $22 million settlement, the court must approve the agreement before it becomes final. Other details of the proposed settlement have not been released to the public.
Parents Are Co-Plaintiffs in Case
Although the woman’s parents were not involved in the accident that injured their daughter, they joined the lawsuit as co-plaintiffs. The court probably allowed this because, due to the woman’s injuries, her parents will need to take care of her for the rest of her life. If the settlement is approved, the woman and her parents will recover damages to pay the woman’s future medical expenses and care.
The woman suffered serious brain damage in the accident, and now has very limited communication skills. The large settlement amount would help the family manage the woman’s health care costs, which are sure to be astronomical. The jury apparently felt deep sympathy for the woman and her family, and also believed that the driver had clearly been negligent in causing the accident. These truck accident cases can be very complex, and it is a credit to the family’s attorneys that they were able to secure such a large settlement.
What to Do if You Are Involved in a Truck Accident
If you or a loved one has been killed or injured in a truck accident, and you are thinking about litigation, you should contact a personal injury attorney immediately. An attorney can review the facts of your case and determine whether you have a viable claim. If so, they can help you seek the compensation you deserve.
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The National Safety Council (NSC) has designated April as Distracted Driving Awareness Month, and is campaigning to stop cell phone use while driving and other dangerous habits. According to the NSC, thousands of people die each year in accidents involving cell phone use while driving. However, cell phones are not the only type of distraction that leads to accidents, and it is important for drivers to avoid all distractions as often as possible.
Tips to Avoid Distracted Driving Accidents
Here is some information and advice to help you avoid distracted driving accidents:
1.    New drivers are more easily distracted: Drivers between the ages of 15 and 20 comprise only 6.4 percent of all drivers, but account for 11.4 percent of traffic fatalities. Parents should teach their kids to be responsible drivers, and kids should recognize that they are not invincible.
2.    Every second counts: Looking at your phone for even a brief moment can be disastrous. You are usually driving so fast that you need to maintain constant focus on the road.
3.    Eating while driving is a distraction: While perhaps not as distracting as cell phone use, eating while driving does take some of your attention off the road and can lead to an accident or to the police pulling you over.
4.    Cell phone records are admissible in court: Prosecutors can subpoena your cell phone records in order to show that you were talking on your phone or texting at the time an accident occurred.
5.    Texting and driving can lead to child endangerment charges: If you text and drive with a small child in the car and a police officer sees you, you may be charged with child endangerment.
6.    Distracted driving can lead to public shaming: With social media becoming ubiquitous, some cities are encouraging people to take pictures of distracted drivers and post them on the internet.
7.    Watching crash videos can discourage you from texting and driving: Watching videos of accidents caused by texting and driving is a good way to scare yourself into paying attention to the road.
8.    Even hands-free cell phone devices can be distracting: While not as dangerous as hand-held cell phones, hands-free devices are still distracting and can lead to accidents.
9.    There’s an app for that: There are smartphone apps that automatically block incoming calls and texts, and don’t allow you to send texts, while you are driving. Download and utilize one of these apps, just to be safe.
10.  Get a lawyer if it’s too late: If you have already been involved in a distracted driving accident, whether you were at fault or not, you should consult with an attorney who has experience dealing with these cases.
What to Do if You Are Involved in an Auto Accident

If you have been injured in an auto accident, whether it involved cell phone use or not, you should contact a personal injury attorney immediately. The lawyers at Goldstein & Hayes in Atlanta can review the facts of your case and determine whether you have a viable claim. For more information, please visit or website or call us directly at 404.869.8600.
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Just weeks after General Motors issued a recall on 1.6 million compact cars, the auto manufacturer is facing a potential class action lawsuit stemming from an ignition-switch defect on the recalled models. The lawsuit, filed in Texas federal court earlier this month, alleges that GM knew about the defect as early as 2004 but failed to take any steps to fix it or warn drivers of the dangers.

The plaintiffs in the lawsuit against GM are a couple who own a 2007 Chevy Cobalt, which is one of the models that was recalled. They claim that, due to the defect with the ignition-switch, they drove the car less often than they otherwise would have. While the couple does not claim that they were injured due to the defective ignition-switch, they are asking for damages for diminished resale value and the loss of use of their car.

Lawsuit May Become Class Action
The lawsuit is seeking class action certification, which would allow the plaintiff couple to represent similarly situated individuals across the country who may have been injured due to GM’s wrongdoing in handling the ignition-switch defect. However, it is not certain that the court will certify the lawsuit as a class action. In order to grant a lawsuit class action certification, a federal court must find the following:

1.    It is impractical for each plaintiff to sue on his or her own: There must be some practical or legal barriers to every member of the potential class suing the defendant individually and directly.

2.    There is a common complaint shared among class members: Every member of the class must have a common legal complaint against the defendant. In the GM case, individuals who have been injured in auto accidents caused by defects besides the ignition-switch would not be eligible to join the class.

3.    Class representatives have the same claims and defenses as the other members of the class: The plaintiffs who represent the rest of the class must make the same claims, and the same defenses against counter-claims, that the other members of the class would be able to make in individual lawsuits.

4.    The class representatives and their attorneys will fairly represent the class: Since joining a class action lawsuit requires forfeiting certain rights to pursue individual litigation, the court needs assurance that the plaintiffs and their attorneys will competently put forward their case.

More Legal Troubles for GM
The potential class action lawsuit is just the latest in a series of legal problems faced by GM. The company faces other litigation from drivers related to the cars that were recalled. In addition, both Congress and the Justice Department are looking into civil and criminal charges against GM, alleging that the auto manufacturer misled government regulators by not informing them of the defect.

What to Do if You Are Injured Due to a Defective Automobile
If you have been injured in a car accident, and you believe this injury may be the result of an automobile’s mechanical defect, you should contact a personal injury attorney immediately. An attorney can review the facts of your case and determine whether you have a viable claim. If so, they can help you seek the compensation you deserve.
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Two fatal wrecks occurred around the same time Saturday afternoon in Cobb County.  See the attached AJC article for additional information in these car wrecks that certainly have changed the lives of these families forever.

What to Do if You Have Been Injured in an Auto Accident

If you or a loved one has been injured in an auto accident, whether due to bad weather or otherwise, you should contact a personal injury attorney immediately.  The lawyers at Goldstein & Hayes can review the facts of your case and determine whether you have a viable claim. If so, they can help you seek the compensation you deserve.
Two fatal wrecks occurred around the same time Saturday afternoon in Cobb County. A crash killed a driver on Paper Mill Road near Atlanta Country Club Drive in Marietta around 4:45 p.
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Large truck accidents accounted for 104,000 injuries in 2012, showing that highways can be dangerous places for smaller cars. These numbers, from the latest report of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), represent an 18% increase in the number of injuries compared to 2011. Large truck accident fatalities increased by four percent over the same period, up to 3,921 in 2012.
Truck Accidents Are Especially Dangerous for Smaller Vehicles
When a large truck collides with a smaller car, the chances for a serious injury or fatality increase significantly. In particular, these collisions mean likely injury or death for car drivers and passengers. Seventy-three percent of the people injured in truck accidents in 2012 were occupants of other vehicles besides the truck, 24 percent were occupants of large trucks, while another three percent were not occupants of any vehicle.
When it came to fatalities, 73 percent were occupants of other vehicles, 18 percent were occupants of large trucks, and ten percent were non-occupants of vehicles. The numbers for fatalities are similar, although ten percent of the fatalities from truck accidents were non-occupants of vehicles. In all, drivers and passengers of other vehicles involved in truck crashes are nearly three times more likely to be injured, and four times more likely to be killed, than occupants of large trucks.
One type of truck accident that can be particularly dangerous is the rear-ending of a large truck. According to the NHTSA statistics, in fatal two-vehicle collisions, trucks were rear-ended almost three times as often as non-truck vehicles. This is fairly self-explanatory, as rear-ending a large truck is nearly equivalent to driving straight into a concrete wall, and can have deadly consequences. As with all auto accidents, alcohol consumption greatly increases the likelihood of crashing, getting injured, or dying on the road. While the rate of intoxication among truck drivers involved in accidents was relatively low, the rate for drivers of other vehicles in the same accidents was unacceptably high.
While all truck accident injuries and fatalities increased from 2011 to 2012, the number of injuries to non-truck occupants and non-occupants of vehicles jumped starkly. Together, the injuries and fatalities for these groups increased by nearly 20 percent. Again, this shows just how dangerous the roads can be for drivers and passengers of smaller vehicles. While all auto accidents are unfortunate, truck accidents in particular can be deadly, and seem to be getting deadlier. Drivers of smaller vehicles need to be especially careful and change their driving habits when necessary, and those involved in accidents with large trucks should seek out quality legal representation to protect their rights and interests.
What to Do if You Are Involved in a Truck Accident
If you or a loved one has been killed or injured in a truck accident, and you are thinking about litigation, you should contact a personal injury attorney immediately. An attorney can review the facts of your case and determine whether you have a viable claim. If so, they can help you seek the compensation you deserve.
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Buses belonging to an East Point transportation company “pose an imminent hazard to the public,” and have been taken out of service by the U.S. Department of Transportation.

Woodburn’s Motor Coach appeared on a list of shut down transportation companies released by the USDOT Wednesday. The news release indicates the bus company was ordered out of service March 7 because federal investigators discovered the company’s 11 motor coaches did not meet minimum safety standards.
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