Every year, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) makes 30,000 arrests due to drug-related crimes. Despite these arrests and the untiring surveillance and operation of law enforcement agencies to catch criminals and rid the streets of drugs, trafficking, distribution, possession and use of illegal drugs (including marijuana, cocaine, heroin, and 3, 4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA), which is otherwise known as Ecstasy) are still significant problems in the country.
Thousands of individuals suffer years of jail term due to the very wrong notion that smuggling drugs into the U.S. is too easy money to pass up. Obviously, they would rather risk being caught and face heavy penalties, than turn down the chance of earning big amounts of cash.
Drug-related activities, especially drug trafficking, are serious federal crimes with harsh mandatory sentences. A drug trafficker can face years of jail sentence; fine amounting to thousands of dollars; loss of right to vote until the completion of the entire felony sentence; loss of the right to carry a gun; and, loss of certain academic and professional opportunities.
For drug selling, offenders can face much three to nine years imprisonment (even longer for those found guilty of selling drugs to minors). For possession of drugs, on the other hand, many states carry a mandatory minimum sentence of 30 to 40 months imprisonment, besides the steep fines (other states also include many hours of community service, which will serve as additional penance for the crime).
Illegal drugs use is linked to many causes of death, homicide, sexual crimes, violence, suicide, HIV infection, hepatitis, pneumonia, mental illness and motor-vehicle injuries. It is because of these, which put the lives of so many innocent lives danger, that law enforcement officers and the DEA fight the crime with more intensity. Thus, rather than just charging an individual with possession, law enforcers also look for signs, such as small plastic bags, scales and large amounts of cash, which are all possible signs of intent to sell.
The penalties awaiting a person convicted of a drug crime should never be taken lightly; more so, however, are the effects of a conviction as these can ruin a person’s future even years after his/her conviction and despite having completed the terms of his/her sentence. Because whether he/she likes it or not, his/her crime and conviction will be on record accessible, especially, to potential employers.
Drug trafficking, according to a Nashville drug crimes lawyer, can be used to refer to the manufacture, delivery, possession with intent, and sale of all controlled substances; it may also be prosecuted as anything from Class E to Class A felonies at the state level. A person charged with a crime related to illegal drugs will definitely need to do everything to protect himself/herself from the consequences of a conviction. A highly-competent drug crimes defense lawyer, may just be the right person who can provide him/her the strong defense necessary to prove his/her innocence, or lighten his/her sentence in case of a conviction.
Posted by Kath on Apr 29, 2016 in Divorce, Family | 0 comments
Visitation rights, in a divorce or child custody action, refer to the permission a court grants to the non-custodial parent to be with his or her child/children at times that have been agreed upon by both parents or determined by the court (courts, however, rather prefer that schedule of visitation be decided by both parents).
Visitation rights, once approved by a court, should be respected and observed by both the custodial and non-custodial parents (in Texas, particularly, the terms used to refer to parental custody are “sole managing conservatorship” for parents who have sole custody, and parents with “possessory conservatorship” for non-custodial parents). In situations wherein a custodial parent denies his or her former partner the right to visit their child/children, the non-custodial parent gains the right to request the court for a modification in the child custody decision.
A court has the authority to grant or deny visitation rights to a parent with sole or partial custody. Denial of this right becomes necessary if spending time with the non-custodial parent would only negatively impact the child’s growth and development. This is most likely the case if the non-custodial parent would be proven as unfit, meaning, that such parent is abusive, dependent on illegal drugs or alcohol, would expose the child to immoral and/or illegal activities, has the tendency of abandoning the child, or using of excessive, unnecessary discipline.
To make sure that ‘fit’ non-custodial parents are given time with their child/children, some states determine specific days when parent and child/children can spend bonding moments. The Texas state legislature, for example, has adopted what is known as the “Standard Possession Order.” Under this rule, the non-custodial parent may see his or her child/children:
- A couple of hours every Thursday night
- On the first, third and fifth weekends of each month
- On alternating holidays
- At least one month in the summer
“The SPO tells the parents where the exchanges of the child will take place, where the child will spend the holidays, and has special rules for parents who live more than 100 miles apart. The court does not have to follow the SPO if a child is under three years old or if the SPO is not in the best interest of the child.”
As stipulated in the website of The Maynard Law Firm, PLLC, there are times when the SPO will need to be crafted to work around parents with non-typical work schedules and for other reason that are in the best interest of the children. The legality of this issue often requires the assistance of attorneys who are adept in visitation rights and custody laws to make sure that no laws will be violated by both parents and that the changes agreed upon will not compromise the best interest of the child. If the parents, however, will fail to arrive at an agreeable new schedule of visitation, then they will just have to follow the SPO.
Posted by Kath on Nov 18, 2015 in Injury | 0 comments
Childbearing is frequently romanticized, where the infant appears headfirst, lustily crying and looking like the picture of wellness. In actuality, childbirth is perhaps among the very most challenging and potentially dangerous experiences for both the mother and baby.
According to the website of The Driscoll Firm, P.C., a lot can fail in childbirth, and back in the day, it did. Nearly half of all moms endured problems which were lethal to the kid, the mother, or equally. Pregnant women used to prepare for passing as soon as they discovered these were carrying a child.
Childbirth is not any longer as harmful today on account of the improvement in modern medicine and technology. Now, possible problems could be discovered while the child is still in-utero, and preparations are made ahead to avoid problems during the birthing. Yet, lots of decisions are still made by the doctor and parents that can be wrong and results in birth traumas and injuries.
There are many types of injuries according to the situation. The most common is that of physical injury, where the physician draws too much (Erb’s palsy), takes too long to choose a Caesarean section (perinatal asphyxia), or poor usage of devices (cephalohematoma) But maybe the most disputed among the normally regarded arrival harm is that of cerebral palsy.
Cerebral palsy is a neuromotor dysfunction that’s perhaps not immediately noticeable at birth. You can find four kinds of cerebral palsy, as well as the most familiar is cerebral palsy that is spastic, happening in almost three-fourths of all circumstances. It is questioned that trauma triggered during the time of arrival may have caused cerebral palsy in babies, but how it’s nonprogressive indicates that it comes from just one event that was traumatic. This can not be quite glad for the child and its particular family.
Because it shows across the time the kid turns one, it’s often hard to show medical malpractice. If there aren’t any other factors (low birth weight, maternal diabetes poor prenatal health,) to account for the state, it could be possible to still create a claim with the help of a skilled birth injury attorney. Consult with one as soon as possible after finding to learn the choices legally open for you as the family or parent member of the wounded youngster.
Posted by Kath on Aug 5, 2015 in Injury, Laws | 0 comments
Statistical data show that from 1999 to 2010 more than 29,000 people in the US died of mesothelioma, a rare form of deadly cancer that affects the mesothelium, the thin cell wall that protects the body’s internal organs. Due to its 20 – 40 years latency period, many of those diagnosed with this illness are already above the age 50, while the cancer itself is more likely at stage 3 or 4, making the survival rate usually lasting only up to two years.
Inhalation of tiny, sharp Asbestos fiber dusts is the only known cause of mesothelioma. These fiber dusts stick and scar the lungs, and then spread to, and likewise damage, the other organs of the body, making the affected person’s health deteriorate until he or she becomes too weak to battle the disease.
The toxicity of asbestos was discovered during the time of Pliny the Younger, a lawyer and a magistrate from ancient Rome; this was around 100 A.D. It was during the19th century, however, when records of numerous asbestos-related deaths became more widespread, especially from the late 1800s up until the 1970s, when people in asbestos-mining towns or those whose work directly exposed them to asbestos, suffered early deaths as their lungs were scarred by asbestos fibers.
The fatal occurrences only clearly prove how widespread mining and the use of asbestos was in many different types of industries. In the US, most particularly in the shipping industry, more than four million workers (including US Navy personnel) were exposed to thousands of tons of asbestos due to their task of building US battleships (during World War II).
Besides asbestos miners, Navy personnel and shipyard workers, there were so many others whose work exposed them to asbestos, such as workers in construction sites, manufacturing plants, railroads, power plants, chemical plants and mills; there were also those whose work involved manufacturing of asbestos-containing products, and demolition, remodeling, or repair of old houses and buildings.
According to the website of Williams and Kherkher, many houses and commercial buildings, like medical centers, offices, malls, and hotels which were built before the 1970s have insulation materials and other equipment and products that contain, or may have contained, asbestos.
The most commonly identified products which contain asbestos include: roofing shingles, textured paint, stove-top pads, floors and walls that surround wood-burning stoves and furnaces, vinyl floor tiles, hot water and steam pipes, door gaskets, oil and coal furnaces, joint compounds used on walls and ceilings, ironing board covers, fireproof gloves, hairdryers, automobile brake pads and linings, and so many others. So long as the asbestos contained in these products are left untouched, then the mineral would be harmless. However, if the product containing asbestos gets disturbed through drilling, repair, damage or deterioration, or if the whole house or building were demolished, then asbestos fibers would definitely be released into the air, becoming a cancer-causing threat to anyone who inhales them.
Asbestos continues to be used in the US despite its already having been banned in 55 countries. With companies continuously exposing workers to, and manufacturing things that contain, this toxic substance there will always be someone to be diagnosed with mesothelioma years after having been exposed to it.
Posted by Kath on Apr 3, 2015 in Injury | 0 comments
Dealing with psychotic disorders can be difficult, especially parents of autistic children with explosive and aggressive behavior. One of the more effective treatments for this type of autism is Risperdal, the trade name for the atypical antipsychotic drug risperidone. However, there are severe side effects.
Risperdal was approved for certain types of autism in children in 2006. It was originally approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the management of schizophrenia in 1994. However, Risperdal proved to cause significant reduction in aggression and tantrums, hyperactivity, and self-injury. This led to its prescription for children with bipolar disorder as well as autism. The ability to control their own disruptive behavior allows the children to respond better to social and education programs and interventions. They can then benefit from these programs.
Unfortunately, as the Risperdal attorneys from the Williams Kherkher law firm discuss on their website, taking Risperdal has its drawbacks. This may include gynecomastia (male breast development), sexual dysfunction, hyperprolactinemia (elevated levels of prolactin that can lead to osteoporosis), and heart attacks. Janssen Pharmaceuticals, a division of Johnson & Johnson (J&J) and maker of Risperdal, failed to include these possible side effects in their warning labels and medical literature.
These adverse side effects have serious consequences for the patient, and the failure to warn impacts on the patient’s right to choose to take their chances. The worst thing is there are quite a few alternatives to Risperdal that do not have these side effects.
It is true that alternatives to Risperdal may not be as effective. However, they pose less of a risk to the physical, emotional, and psychological health of the patient, who is already suffering from a serious mental or behavioral disorder. Doctors can still choose to offer Risperdal to patients, but it should be with the full knowledge of what they are getting into.
If you decided to take Risperdal based on incomplete information, you have the right to sue the drug company for their oversight. It may be too late to change your medical options as the damage has been done, but you can still have legal recourse. Talk to a knowledgeable Risperdal lawyer in your state to find out more about your legal options.
There is quite a difference between a sickness and a temporary disability. True enough that being sick, in and of itself, is a kind of temporary disability. After all, being sick means that you are temporarily unable to do your work and need a few days rest in order to recuperate from having been ill. However, a sickness will take a few days at most. That is why most employers only allow around six or so days every year to be entitled for an employee to avail of paid sick leaves. Temporary partial disability benefits are an entirely different ball game altogether.
According to the website of the lawyers over at Hankey Law Office P.C., a disability of this nature means that you are able to work, just not quite with the same quality, quantity; or in the usually expected capacity. These benefits are born of a compromise that is mutually beneficial for both the employer and the employee. An employee will not wish to lose his or her job because of an injury, especially if it was a result out of working (as is common for construction workers and such) but an employer will not want to pay out the same amount for a diminished quality or quantity of work done. The benefits ensure a fair though somewhat decreased wage for a period of time while the employee is still healing from the disability. Additional compensation may also be rewarding depends on specific circumstances.
This is usually automatic from employers, especially if the injury that caused the disability came from the work place and was work-related. However, the process with obtaining these benefits can be tedious, complex, and incredibly stressful if you were to try and accomplish this all yourself. That is why it is recommended for you to seek the help of a workers compensation lawyer in order to obtain the benefits that are owed you. Professional, expert help will not only make things flow faster and smoother but will also save you stress and heartache that are energies better channeled towards your getting better from the unfortunate situation that rendered you temporarily and partially disabled.
Posted by Kath on Oct 29, 2014 in Car Accidents | 6 comments
Regardless of the advances in technology and the strict federal safety standards on automobiles manufacturing, auto defects are still a large part of the causes for serious accidents and injuries in the United States. The general public is aware of the type of vehicles that are prone to accidents and auto defects, but not everyone is informed about the reality and the scope of the problem: millions of vehicles on American roads have defects, posing great risks of death and severe or life-threatening injuries once an automobile accident does occur.
For many years now, injuries or death resulting from defective vehicle parts have become a reasonable basis for consumers to sue the manufacturers. Attorneys in Tennessee may look for these kinds of defects when their other avenues of investigation are not as fruitful as they like or it is apparent that there was an issue. Although the crashworthiness doctrine does recognize that an auto accident is statistically inevitable, manufacturers still have the responsibility to eliminate preventable risks of harm at a time of an accident. What the crashworthiness case focuses on is the reason for the injury, and not on the cause of the event.
An automobile accident that resulted to severe injuries or death should be weighed for a possible product liability claim. Although violent car collisions are often the reason for serious injuries and deaths, a lot of these are preventable if not for the defective auto defects. A client’s insurance coverage can help in compensation for the damages, but it is usually not enough when catastrophic injuries or death occurs. Filing for a product liability claim may be the best option for compensation.
Despite not being present during the accident, or not the cause of the automobile accident, a manufacturer can still be tort-feasor in a product liability case if the vehicle defect was the major reason for the serious injuries that the driver or passenger suffered. Because it is the manufacturer’s duty to ensure (from the design, testing, manufacturing, and certification) that the vehicle meets the federal standard of safety before marketing it, any accident or injuries that resulted from any vehicle defects will be viewed as negligence on their part.
Being hurt in a car accident is traumatic, especially if it could’ve been easily avoided by the offending driver. If you have been hurt in an automobile accident because of someone else’s negligence, make sure to contact a personal injury lawyer today. An experienced attorney will be able to help you through the complexities of the law, making sure that you are given the best legal representation. If you have been hurt due to someone else’s negligence, you may be entitled to compensation.
Posted by Kath on Oct 25, 2014 in Workplace Injuries | 0 comments
The Department of Labor knows the great risks construction workers are exposed to everyday, due to the heavy equipment, sharp and dangerous tools, great heights from where some workers are required to perform certain jobs, and their exposure to hazardous substances. Construction sites, in fact, still lead all types of workplaces in the number of accidents registered every year and, according to the Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics, the leading causes of construction-related injuries, illnesses and deaths are falls, being caught between objects (such as two heavy equipment), electrocution, and being struck by an object (like a falling tool) – the top four causes which has been called by OSHA as the “Fatal Four.”
There are other causes, of course, which have been identified by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) of 1971, such as use of weak hoists and ladders, scaffoldings not properly assembled, lack of railings that would protect workers from roof and building edges, and so forth.
The duty of ensuring safety and health in the workplace is placed by OSHA under the care of employers. But besides this major and primary responsibility, employers are also required to make sure that only qualified employees are hired, that safety gears and made available and that these are properly worn in work areas, that standard safety equipment are situated in designated places and that safe working practices are always observed, and that workers are given proper training, especially about the use/operation of dangerous tools and equipment.
An employer who negligently fails to perform his/her responsibilities in ensuring and maintaining a healthy and safe working environment for all employees can be charged with violation of the safety standard laws and may be made to face a lawsuit in the event of an accident.
A worker, who sustains any work-related injured, on the other hand, can file a claim with the workers’ compensation board for the financial assistance meant to cover his/her lost wages, cost of medical treatment, and others.
Often, applications for a claim get denied either by the employer or by the board itself. Making an appeal is the legal right of the injured worker, though, something that he cannot be denied or deterred from doing. To help ensure that an application contains all the necessary documents and is submitted within the statute of limitations (allotted time for submission which has been set by the state), it is best that the injured is helped and represented by a legal professional, specifically a Minnesota workers’ compensation lawyer.
Posted by Kath on Apr 18, 2014 in Laws | 2 comments
The Florida Supreme Court recently refused to confirm the restrictive terms of eligibility for expert witnesses in medical malpractice cases embodied in the Daubert Standard (HB 7015; SB 1792). Although it has already been enacted, there are those who believe that the refusal of the Supreme Court to adopt it in court indicate that the law itself is unconstitutional. The opinion of the court was sought in a motion to have the Florida Evidence Code amended to incorporate this expert witness standard.
In a related but separate instance, the high court also ruled that the cap on non-economic damages i.e. pain and suffering of $500,000 in medical malpractice lawsuits is contrary to the constitutional right to equal protection under state law. The rationale behind limiting the liability of medical professionals for errors that resulted in injury or harm to patients is to curb the rapid increase in medical malpractice insurance rates.
Some studies dispute that claim payouts and legal expenses are the reason why insurers increase premiums. Instead, it is suggested that insurers raise medical malpractice premiums to make more money off doctors.
The rulings of the high court in these matters are seen only as a temporary setback in the efforts to protect physicians and make it harder for victims to prove their case in medical malpractice cases. The movers behind the initiative concede that an amendment at this point would not be practicable as the legislative session had already begun.
Florida is not the only state to impose a cap on medical malpractice awards. In fact, there are only 15 states that have absolutely no cap on damages namely: Arizona, Connecticut, New York, Kentucky, Washington, District of Columbia, Wyoming, Alabama, Iowa, Arkansas, Minnesota, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Delaware, and Vermont.
If you have been injured as a result of medical negligence, the law may not always be on your side. Engage the services of a personal injury lawyer experienced in handling medical malpractice cases in your state to protect your rights and get just compensation.
Posted by Kath on Mar 14, 2014 in Nursing Homes | 0 comments
Although the mere thought of it is simply disturbing, nursing home abuse is occurring, and at a frequent rate. Senior citizens, being one of the most vulnerable people in society, are clearly defenseless especially when their living conditions prove that they are not capable of taking care of themselves. There are a number of ways that nursing home abuse can happen, and all of them are damaging in many ways – emotionally, financially and physically.
Because the number of elderly in the United States is increasing, the rise in the need for nursing home care over in-home care has also increased, and this only heightens the chances of having nursing home abuse. According to the website of the Sampson Law Firm, not all elderly admitted to a nursing home are ready to report any abuse that they experience, therefore it is vital that the family should know what the signs of nursing home abuse are.This is to ensure that the elderly is well taken care of and to prevent the medical practitioner form harming other patients in the nursing home.
Not everyone is aware of it, but an elderly in a nursing home can also suffer from financial abuse. This form of abuse occurs when the abusers extort money using their authority over the patient, or even by gaining the trust of the patient (particularly those who are lonely and are eagerly friendly to other people). The financial abuse can come in a form of slowly taking away the patient’s money, or having a complex plan to take away or deplete the patient’s life savings. Caregivers as well as strangers are among the leading culprits for financial abuse, therefore family members should watch out for these types of people and how they can take advantage of the patient.
Misuse of credit cards or bank account information, healthcare fraud, and even identity theft are possible financial nursing home abuse. There are also many types of scams aimed for the elderly. Family members should not be the only nee who should watch out for signs of financial abuse in nursing homes, medical services and providers should also watch out for signs of nursing home abuse.