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Birth defects vs. birth injuries

Posted by on Oct 10, 2017 in Personal Injury | 0 comments

As I’m preparing to greet our new little bundle of joy (six weeks off, if he’s on time), I’ve been researching like mad about everything we need, and also everything that could go wrong. On the wrong side, it’s hard to read all of that, but I feel I owe it to myself and to Mark (that’s the little one) as well.

And, I’ve discovered something that I think I ought to share since while it’s awful, it’s also something that people need to be aware of so they can make the best choices for their families going forward.

So, what I’ve discovered is this: there’s a difference between birth defects and birth injuries.

On the one hand, things like Downs Syndrome and heart murmurs are birth defects. Those are things the baby would have been born with no matter what. They’re genetic issues, and nothing could have prevented them, unfortunately. In this case, there’s unfortunately little that can be done beyond caring for the child as best you can.

Not all defects, it’s worth pointing out, are absolutely awful. There are cleft palates, which are fixed easily enough with a small surgery. A club foot is also fixable. But, the main point is they are as inevitable as the birth itself once that baby is conceived. It’s in the DNA.

Birth injuries are another story. Those are due to mistakes made by doctors, nurses, or other professionals helping you in the birthing process. And this, to me, is particularly tragic because the problems were not inevitable, someone made a mistake for them to happen.

They can be no less awful for the family as well. Birth injuries include cerebral palsy, cephalohematoma (a dangerous condition where blood collects in the newborn’s head), and shaken baby syndrome.

I know all those possibilities are horrible to contemplate, but I want to point them out now, here, for other expectant parents, so that you can be aware that if such a tragedy occurs, you have a right to demand compensation for all the financial burden you’ll incur from taking care of that child from day one through the rest of your or his/her life.

A longer list of potential birth injuries can be found on this lawyer’s page, which by the way, you should have in the back of your mind. Not that lawyer, per se, but a lawyer, should any issues spring up involving your child.

As new parents, we are obligated to be prepared for everything. This is the worst side of that responsibility, but it’s a responsibility none the less. I don’t mean for you to be watching for a chance to sue your doctor or accuse him or her of malpractice. Giving birth should be a time of joy and as little stress and worry as possible (although I bet it’s still a lot…). Still, we have to watch out and be aware.

I owe that to Mark, and you owe that to your own little one, whoever he or she may be.

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How to Sleep Better at Night

Posted by on Jun 13, 2017 in Health | 0 comments

Contrary to popular belief, sleeping is not a waste of time. It helps the mind and body recover from the stress it has sustained from everyday life. Without adequate sleep, a person may experience negative effects on both the mind and body. He or she may have mental difficulties, such as in the aspects of alertness, concentration, memorization, and reaction time. He or she may have physical difficulties, such as fatigue and excessive sleepiness during the day.

There are also sleeping disorders out there that can result into worse medical problems. For example, according to the website of Silent Night Therapy, untreated sleep apnea may lead to diabetes, high blood pressure, heart problems, and even stroke.

This puts into perspective how important sleep is for the body and mind. So, maybe you can let go of your mobile phone or computer one hour earlier to get that sleep your body and mind need. Here are some tips on how to get better sleep at night.

Sleep at the same time everyday

Your body clock can be trained. You can train it in a way that you can fall asleep and wake up in a specific time. This way, you will find it easier to fall asleep once you hit the bed and potentially have more sleep compared to those who don’t have a sleeping and waking schedule and struggle to fall asleep.

Have a sleeping ritual

Before you sleep, do the same thing, so you can train your body to know that doing that thing means that it is bedtime. It helps when the thing you choose to do is relaxing, such as taking a warm shower or reading a book. As much as possible, avoid involving computers and mobile devices in this ritual.

Get comfortable

Of course, it is much easier to fall asleep when you feel comfortable. This means that the conditions around you are peaceful enough to trigger drowsiness and sleep. This may depend on your preferences, but typically, a comfortable sleeping place involve proper temperature, lack of lights and sounds, and clean sheets.

Avoid food and drinks

Eating and drinking is a form of disturbance in the sleeping area, because of how they can put you out of bed. You may need to go to the toilet because of excessive eating or drinking, or you may need to throw that junk food package in the trash – either of which puts you out of sleeping time status and potentially put your drowsiness away.

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How Drunk Driving Can Cause Accidents

Posted by on Mar 10, 2017 in Car Crashes, Intoxicated Drivers | 0 comments

Driving while intoxicated is one of the most dangerous behaviors you can do in the road. Alcohol can affect your bodily functions, limiting your driving skills and putting you and the others around you at risk of traffic accidents.

Feelings of Drowsiness
Alcohol can give you intense feelings of relaxation, making you more prone to being drowsy and falling asleep while on the wheel. There are limitless reasons why that is dangerous. Being drowsy can limit your comprehension of traffic signs and judgment skills on the road. Falling asleep can make you turn the wheel in an unexpected direction. Turn left and you can collide with oncoming vehicles. Turn right and you can crash on guardrails, trees, and other obstructions on the side of the road.

Limits in Mental Functions
Limited comprehension is not just the effect of being drowsy, as it can also be the effect of the alcohol itself. When you have limited comprehension, you may not be able to understand traffic lights, road signs, vehicle signals, and judge the distance of other vehicles properly. Aside from that, alcohol can also affect your reaction time, so you may fail in reacting timely and appropriately to stimulus, such as turns and passing pedestrians.

Limits in Physical Functions
Driving requires a significant level of body coordination, particularly with the eyes, hands, and feet. Alcohol can compromise this coordination. Your eyes may get blurry, and your hands and feet may not be effectively controlled while under the influence of alcohol.

Reckless Tendencies
Those who are under the influence of alcohol are also more likely to do reckless behaviors, such as speeding, street racing, tailgating, and weaving. They may also drive with distractions such as mobile phones, food, talkative passengers, and worse, products that may cause further impairment like alcohol and drugs. The dangers of reckless behaviors are amplified because of the physical and mental limitations of the drunk driver.

Drunk Driving as an Offense
The law is very aware of the dangers of drunk driving, so it has become illegal almost anywhere. The offense may result into fines, license suspensions, and even jail times.

But it is important to say that the law is not biased. According to the website of the Amerio Law Firm, DUI cases can be defended. This just proves that, even though drunk driving is dangerous, the law will not blindly penalize everybody. But to be safe, it is better to not even try driving while under the influence of alcohol, to avoid the hassles of legalities.

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Medical Malpractice: Misdiagnosis

Posted by on Dec 29, 2016 in Medical Malpractice | 0 comments

One of the most common forms of medical malpractice is misdiagnosis. This refers to a diagnosis error that can result into delayed treatment, incorrect treatment, or no treatment. This can worsen the patient’s condition, and in the worst cases, the patient even dies.

Not because there is a misdiagnosis there is already a medical malpractice case. The medical world is very complex, and even professionals make errors. They key to a medical malpractice case is the incompetence and negligence of the medical professional and how this has resulted into bodily harm.

According to an informative article from the website of Clawson & Staubes, LLC: Injury Group, medical malpractice claimants must present the following:

  • Real relationship between the medical professional and patient
  • Duty of care
  • A violation in the duty of care, like incompetence and negligence
  • Injury as a result of the violation

Incompetence and Negligence

In order to determine whether the medical professional has been competent or not, it is important to look at his work process. Look at what he has done and what he has not done to arrive at a misdiagnosis.

In trying to identify the patient’s problem, the medical professional creates a differential diagnosis list, containing possible problems. The entries of this list are crossed out after several tests and observations prove that they are not the problem. New entries can also make the list, depending on tests, observations, and opinions of other medical professionals.

A medical professional may be seen as incompetent when he does not even have the correct diagnosis in his list, and if another reasonable medical professional would have if put in the same situation. Another sign of incompetence is if he does have the correct diagnosis in his list, but he fails to perform the necessary tests and observations to rule out the other entries of the list and identify the correct diagnosis.

Even if the accused is a competent medical professional, he may still be subject to a medical malpractice because of negligence, like the improper use of diagnostic equipment, improper diagnostic procedure, and misreading lab results.

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Purpose of a Wrongful Death Lawsuit

Posted by on Jul 15, 2016 in Wrongful Death | 0 comments

Millions of accidents occur due to a person’s own carelessness; however, records show that so many more accidents happen due to the negligent act of someone else.

Acting or behaving in ways that will not endanger another person is a fundamental responsibility to every person. Thus, those who choose to act without regard for the safety of others, causing them harm as a result, can very well expect to be recipients of a civil lawsuit, wherein innocent victims (or victims’ families) would have the right to seek and receive compensation from them.

An injury, which is a result of negligence, is called personal injury; it may be physical, emotional or mental. Personal injuries can happen through many different ways, including, but not limited to: car accidents; motorcycle accidents; truck accidents; construction accidents; medical malpractice; defective products; slip and fall accidents; and, nursing home abuse or negligence. While many accidents result to severe (personal) injuries, there are cases wherein their effect is much more damaging, leading to a victim’s wrongful or untimely death

In the case of wrongful death, the family or dependents of the deceased can file a lawsuit against the liable person or company for the purpose of seeking justice. This legal action or lawsuit is called a wrongful death claim. It is filed for the benefit of the “real parties in interest” or the surviving family members and the decedent’s other dependents. A wrongful death claim is actually a special kind of personal injury lawsuit that is filed for the purpose of seeking compensation for whatever pecuniary or financial damages the dependents may suffer, like loss of the decedent’s financial support, services and companionship, lost prospect of inheritance, and medical and funeral expenses.

According to The Benton Law Firm, it may just be the duty of dependents or family members to bring the the person responsible for the wrongful death of their family member to justice; to hold him or her accountable for whatever wrong he or she has done. Seeking the help of a seasoned wrongful death lawyer for this purpose can be advantageous for the family of the deceased.

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Dangers of truck accidents caused by intoxicated drivers

Posted by on Mar 14, 2016 in Intoxicated Drivers | 0 comments

Even though there are lots of campaigns were already made, intoxicated driving is still a big problem in the U.S. and it is still one of the major causes of many fatal road accidents. Intoxicated driving basically means that a driver operating a vehicle is either under the influence of alcohol, drugs, or both.

Truck drivers or any drivers with commercial driver’s license (CDL) in most states are required by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) to have a blood alcohol limit (BAC) of 0.04 percent. Such BAC percentage is lower by half compared to private vehicle drivers because large vehicles like commercial trucks are more dangerous when involved in intoxicated driving accidents. Drivers may not be allowed to operate a truck for four hours after consuming alcohol. The FMCSA may require truck drivers to regularly submit blood alcohol testing after being caught of intoxicated driving. At all times truck drivers should be alert and responsive while behind the wheels, however, if they are under the influence of alcohol, fatal accidents may occur. A driver who consumed substantial amount of alcohol may not immediately react to critical road conditions as their central nervous system is slowed down.

People on the road are also at high risk of sustaining fatal injuries in accidents if truck drivers are under the influence of drugs. Aside from illegal drugs, prescription drugs, and even over-the-counter drugs can cause intoxication mostly if it is taken in great amounts. According to the website of Ausband & Dumont, driving a commercial truck while under the influence of drugs is “exceedingly dangerous and altogether unacceptable.” The driver’s critical thinking and alertness is impaired when intoxicated by drugs. As truck accidents caused by intoxicated drivers are often serious, people who have been victims of such catastrophes may consider filing damage claims against negligent parties.

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Why is Insider Trading so Seriously Taken?

Posted by on Oct 18, 2015 in Criminal Defense | 0 comments

Surely, there’s not much harm that telling a secret can do, right? Well, there certainly is a lot of damage that one secret can do that could jeopardize an entire institution or government. Employees are usually made to sign non-disclosure agreements in order to protect the information that is passed down within the offices. This can be as harmless as house rules within the company lavatory to trade secrets that could ruin an entire industry overnight.

It is so seriously taken because this is a day and age where the man who holds the information is king. Rome wasn’t built in a day, no, but it could certainly be razed in just one.

So what can you do if you are suspected of colluding with insider trading? Unfortunately, if you are questioned of insider trading then the chances of you having been under heavy scrutiny and investigation for a few months is quite high, according to the website of the lawyers with Kohler Hart Powell. It is then important to remember that you have every right to exercise your constitutional rights to both remain silent and demand legal counsel before you answer to any allegations made against you.

Insider trading is a serious felony, yes, but that doesn’t mean that you have to simply accept accusations against you, especially if there is no firm evidence that is enough to warrant arrest or conviction. Government agents are quite skilled at questions that might seem mundane but could result into potentially incriminating answers, if the person they’re questioning doesn’t understand the way the process of this kind of trial works.

If you or someone you know is currently experiencing allegations of insider trading, it is then recommended that experienced and professional white collar criminal defense attorneys are contacted immediately in order to ensure a fair and just trial.

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What You Need to Know About Rollover Accidents

Posted by on Jun 9, 2015 in Car Crashes, Defective Product Lawsuits | 0 comments

Vehicular accidents are one of the most pressing issues in America. Any type of car crash has the potential to become extremely devastating for its victims, causing serious injuries and even death. However, this assessment is particularly true for rollover accidents. As pointed out by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration or NHTSA, the fatality rate for accidents where a vehicle flips over upside down or over to its side is particularly high. Specifically, they note that such accidents usually cause an estimated number of 10,000 deaths annually.

Rollover accidents are a result of stability issues that occur with top-heavy vehicles clearance like SUVs and 4-wheel drives. These types of vehicle are much taller than a regular passenger car. Because they have greater vertical clearance, their center of gravity is also placed much higher. This makes sharp turns and abrupt changes made when driving along narrow roads particularly cumbersome. With a regular passenger car, these movements and lurches won’t be an issue because they are much closer to the ground. However, with SUVs or 4-wheel drives, being farther from the ground can cause them to easily lose stability and tip over completely. On top of that, certain factors can also increase the risk of rollover accidents. Slippery roads and defective tires can make it much harder for drivers to control their vehicles.

While car manufacturers have been installing safety devices to address these issues common in SUVs and 4-wheel drives recently, there is still some cause for concern. For one, individuals driving vehicles that have not been fitted with such devices are still constantly facing the risk of a very devastating accident. Even when passengers are fortunate enough to survive a rollover accident, many Fort Smith car accident attorneys are aware that victims still have to contend with the devastating aftermath of medical expenses, lost wages, and physical and emotional trauma.

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The Legal Process of Probate

Posted by on Apr 6, 2015 in Probate | 0 comments

A will should go through a process called “probate” in order for it to be considered legally valid, and it is also the procedure how the will is going to be executed. As stated in the American Bar Association, anyone who has something to gain or lose from the will’s probate can be considered as an “interested party’ and can therefore file a petition for the probate of a will. The guidelines regarding the filing for a petition for a probate may differ from state to state and consulting with a lawyer first might be a worthy idea. If you are planning to file for a petition for probate, you should also need to file in the probate court your appointment as an executor. Some lawyers, like the Mokaram firm in Houston, have the professional experience needed to supply you with the help and resources you need.

It is generally understood, however, that the first step is filing the decedent’s will on the probate court at the county in he or she resided. Aside from the will, you should also include any codicils as well as your appointment as executor to the county court. Likewise, you should check whether you are allowed to file if you are not a resident of the state in which the decedent is a citizen of. Next, you should check whether you need to submit an executor’s bond when submitting your petition. This would depend on the practice of the state you are in or if it was requested by the decedent in the will whether sureties are necessary or not.

Make sure you certify that you have indeed sent copies of the petition for probate (and the decedent’s death certificate) to the Division of Medical Assistance. This can be done through certified mail. You have to put into the petition the interested parties, namely: (1) the next of kin and the heirs at law (but don’t mention the beneficiaries written on the will), (2) if there are no heirs at law or if there any bequests of charitable nature then the state attorney general should be listed, (3) when the decedent’s surviving spouse is deemed incompetent or is represented by you, then he or she would need to have a guardian ad litem in order to be listed, (4) when the pretermitted heir has a disability or a minor, then a guardian ad litem is also required, (5) if an interested party is actively serving in the military, then they can be given special provisions that would guarantee their representation. You are then required to send a copy of the court notice of the petition for probate to each of these parties, along with the all the devisees and legatees.

Make sure to indicate that the notice was published and mailed according to the court’s requirements and that you have filed the notice with the county probate court. After no objection to the allowance of the will has been heard from any interested parties, then you can request for the will to be allowed without testimony and it will be approved by court. As stated earlier, rules regarding litigation can vary from each state, thus it would be a wise decision to talk with a lawyer first before proceeding with any filing.

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Defective Hip Implants Harm Many Patients

Posted by on Apr 4, 2015 in Defective Product Lawsuits, Personal Injury | 0 comments

The DePuy Orthopedics has already produced about 200 products, and among them are three hip replacement systems aimed for the younger patients that will fit their dynamic lifestyles. They were made to address the issue of the device failing due to overuse, but the metal-on-metal makeup of the device has caused more health problems. The three hip replacement systems – Pinnacle Hip Replacement System, ASR Hip Resurfacing System, and ASR XL Acetabular System total hip replacement system – has brought about a number of distinct problems due to their design and make.

Among the most common complications of the DePuy metal-on-metal hip replacement systems were infection, metallosis, immobility and dislocation. This has left Johnson & Johnson, the head company of DePuy, to recall some of their hip replacement systems, but the metal-on-metal versions (such as the Pinnacle Hip Replacement System) were simply discontinued but not recalled from the market.

This has prompted many lawsuits to help injured patients to file for lawsuits against the manufacturer for their negligence and disregard for their patients. According to the website of Williams Kherkher, the injuries sustained are even believed to be permanent and could be life-altering for the patient. Because of the additional medical expense, pain and suffering, and diminished quality of life, those who have been patients of the DePuy hip replacement systems have the right to file for medical negligence, defective products or personal injury claim against the manufacturer.

Medical devices should be checked for their safety before being sold in the market to ensure that they are safe to use and will not cause any harm or risks to their patients. It is not only the FDA’s job to check whether the medical device is safe or not, the manufacturer should always put the safety and health of their patients when designing and making their products to avoid complications, especially in the long run.

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