The landscape of Eastern Montana is changing, but our focus is on your priorities

Ever since the discovery of the Bakken formation in 2008, things have changed in Eastern Montana. What was once a wide ranging swath of land, with sparse locales of population and endless natural beauty is now being transformed by the interests that intend to profit from such an important find. The Bakken reserve is the largest "continuous" oil accumulationever assessed by the USGS. This means oil producers are looking to quickly set-up efficient extraction centers and this means jobs.

Work related injuries are more common place when the bustle and stress of new refineries and new management can lead to the ball being dropped. Overworked people, living in less-than-comfortable situations, potentially will make bad decisions and the consequences can lead to a work-related injury or unfortunate inter office confrontations. This increase in population and jobs can also lead to a scarcity of healthcare. When the providers of local healthcare services are being pushed to the limit, there just simply is not enough to go around in a timely fashion. If you are new to this area, it is important to become informed of what is available to you by way of support and advocacy. For instance, do you have a grasp on what 'Premises Liability' entails. Your healthcare coverage may not fully compensate you in the case of negligence at work or related locations that encompass your work here in Montana. To stay ahead of these issues it is vital to seek the informed advise of a local attorney.

Your labor here may be exact and sober, but what about that dangers that careless co-workers bring to the table or that of criminal interests that have grown in this state. Consider this: Dawson County Sheriff Craig Anderson and other local officials said oil development and the surging population in recent years has overburdened their infrastructure and challenged law enforcement agencies. Montana's Attorney General Tim Fox noted the growth in local residents due to the oil boom in recent years has caused an increase in crime. The Montana Standard recently reported: Oil patch arrests went up 80 percent between 2008 and 2012. Narcotics investigations pursued by the Montana Department of Justice in the northeastern part of the state nearly tripled between 2010 and 2013. "Anything and everything related to the justice system is overtaxed and overburdened here," he said. Jails in this part of Montana are now at capacity.

The Washington Post reported: "there is a dark side to the multibillion-dollar boom in the oil fields ... The arrival of highly paid oil workers living in sprawling "man camps" with limited spending opportunities has led to a crime wave -- including murders, aggravated assaults, rapes, human trafficking and robberies -- fueled by a huge market for illegal drugs, primarily heroin and methamphetamine."

It is important to protect yourself in this changing Montana landscape. An overburdened justice system and stretched-thin authorities need to be dealt with a professional hand. Find an advocate who has 75 years plus of legal experience and who is at heart connected to this region and it's interests. Contact us to find a law firm that has your family's interests in mind as well as that of the future of Montana, to preserve what is a great place to work and live.

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