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Child Custody in North Carolina

Posted by on Aug 19, 2017

Divorce is a nasty thing, and it is not something most people want to talk about. Even so, it is incredibly common. It is a frequently cited fact that approximately half of all marriages end in divorce. While all divorces are unpleasant, among the most emotionally taxing are those that involve children. While many (former) couples are able to come to some sort of agreement involving visitation, it is incredibly common that one parent ends up with primary custody, leaving the other parent with maybe as little as one weekend a month. But wait, it gets worse! When it comes to child support payments, many of the noncustodial parents in North Carolina are not paying, making an often tense situation even worse.

According to this North Carolina news site, even as recently as 2015, millions of dollars worth of child support payments had gone unpaid. In addition, from the five years leading up to 2015, only 65% of the child support payments had been collected. According to demographics from The Federal Office of Child Support Enforcement, the overwhelming majority of custodial parents that are eligible to receive child support are women: 89%. As far as North Carolina is concerned, this means that most of the remaining 35% of funds yet to be collected are not going to the women who need it. In addition, 29% of those eligible are below the federal poverty level, so these families rely extremely heavily on the funds provided by child support: up to 45% of a family’s income in some cases. These poor families who do not receive their payments end up costing the taxpayer since they make greater use of food stamps and other forms of aid. The reason cited for these nonpayments is that noncustodial parents either do not have jobs or the ones they do pay far too little to sustain both themselves and their child. Of course, even with wage garnishing and a court order, many people are still refusing to pay for support due to poor enforcement, and some people who owe support may never end up paying the full amount.

Add in the fact that North Carolina legal aid funding has been cut, and those suffering from poverty have few options when it comes to divorce lawyers in Raleigh that can help soon-to-be-ex couples sort out their most valuable assets: their children. The reassuring portion of this news is that of the remaining funds, most will still go to victims of domestic violence and for child custody cases. Even so, North Carolina needs to make a greater effort in ensuring that non-custodial parents pay their fair share for child support. Raising the minimum wage so that more people are incentivized to get jobs and stay off of the welfare system might be a great start. It should also be a requirement that the custodial parent has a full-time job as well, to ensure that both parents are putting in everything they can.

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Which Government Agency Regulates Your Product

Posted by on Aug 6, 2017

According to Karlin, Fleisher & Falkenberg, LLC, by the time a product finally makes its way into the hands of the consumer, one of the most basic assumptions we should be able to make is that the product will be safe. While most products end up being completely risk-free as long as they are used as intended, dangerous products do make their way to market and cause people to sustain serious, if not life-threatening, injuries every year.

Consumers holding the belief that the products they purchase are safe and without defects is the most normal thing about manufacturer and consumer relationship. This trust is not just rooted on consumers’ knowledge of the legal responsibility of manufacturers to ensure that their products are never sources of harm (injury or illness), but also complies with the standard of quality that they themselves have implemented and observe, to protect the reputation they have built for their company.

In reality, however, despite the laws, standard of quality, reputation, and the watchful eyes of government authorities and company managers, flawed or defective products still slip through quality control, find their way in stores, and made available to billions of consumers. As a result, every year, thousands of product liability claims, also called tort lawsuits, against manufacturers of harmful products are filed by consumers due to the injury they sustain from the use of these products.

With millions of defective, harmful products available in the market, the list is an endless one. A number of things on this list are nursery items, children’s toys, electronic gadgets, and household appliances and furniture. These products, by the way, are limited to things that fall under the control of the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC). Other products fall under the regulation of specific government agencies, like:

  • Food, medical devices, drugs and cosmetics being under the Food and Drug Administration;
  • Aircraft, which is managed by the Federal Aviation Administration;
  • Automobiles, which are managed by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration;
  • Alcohol, tobacco & tobacco products, which are under the jurisdiction of the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau; and,
  • Firearms and ammunition, which is under the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

When a product injures anyone, especially a child, all those involved in the chain of distribution, the manufacturer, the distributor and the retailer, can be named as defendants in a civil or tort lawsuit.

 

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The Dangers of Dust Exposure at Work

Posted by on Jun 14, 2017

Though office workers can still be at risk of dust exposure, it can be said that those who work in agriculture, carpentry, construction, manufacturing, and mining are more vulnerable to dust because of the nature of their work and the materials they work with.

But why is dust exposure so dangerous? Because it can have various negative effects on the body. These effects can be divided into two – short-term and long-term effects. Though long-term effects are generally worse, either category can be detrimental to its sufferer’s health.

Short-term Effects

Dust particles are particularly dangerous for the eyes, skin, and respiratory system.

  • Eyes – Eyes can capture particles and may be irritated. This can be a minor inconvenience, but the temporary compromised vision during irritation should not be overlooked, because it can lead to workplace accidents.
  • Skin – Like the eyes, the skin may be vulnerable to irritation. This is particularly true if the particles involved are chemically-induced, because they may have an increased chance of causing itching, reddening, and even scaling.
  • Respiratory System – The dust may be small enough to be inhaled, creating breathing problems due to dust buildup in the airways. If the victim already has a respiratory problem, such as asthma, he or she may also experience an episode.

Long-term Effects

These complications develop after prolonged dust exposure, often amounting in decades. There are also instances where symptoms don’t arise immediately, making them more dangerous. Like the short-term effects, long-term effects often involve the skin and respiratory system.

  • Skin – Chemicals found in some particles may cause skin cancer. This doesn’t happen often, but when it does, it is often a severe case.
  • Respiratory System – There are numerous complications that can be sustained from dust exposure, such as asthma, pneumonia, and lung cancer.

Prevention

An employer is legally and morally obligated to ensure that the risk of the workplace is minimized, even if the workplace can be considered inherently dangerous. There are numerous ways to achieve this. For example, RoboVent has ventilation systems that may reduce the risk of dust exposure.

But prevention is not always about complicated engineering solutions. Sometimes, it is merely about simple safety procedures, such as giving protective gears to employees so they don’t get direct exposure or maintaining the facility so it doesn’t experience dust buildup.

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What to Do After a Car Accident

Posted by on Feb 28, 2017

Getting involved in a traffic accident can be a traumatic experience, and you may not know what to do because you are still clouded by disbelief and shock. But you should not be. There are basic tips you can follow directly after a car accident, ensuring that you are doing the right thing to protect your best interests.

Stay Calm
Take a deep breath and calm yourself. The accident may already be bad in itself, and you don’t want to make it worse by clouding your own judgment. You can make better decisions if your mind is at ease.

Don’t leave the scene
The worst thing you could do in an accident scene is leave. If someone has been injured or killed, you may even face hit-and-run charges. Stay at the scene and secure it, to preserve important factors such as evidence and witnesses.

Check for injuries and other damages
Assess yourself for any injury and ask the other occupants regarding their situation. Also, check for other damages that have been sustained in the accident, such as car damage and road damage. Since your mind is calm, you will be able to grasp the situation easily and act accordingly.

Call the authorities
Auto accidents are not something you should handle on your own even if you are calm. Call the police to investigate, assist, and neutralize any violent disagreements between the parties involved. It is also wise to call an ambulance, especially if you are not sure if somebody has been injured.

Get important information
According to the website of the Philadelphia car accident lawyers at Zavodnick, Zavodnick & Lasky, LLC, negligent parties who have caused car accidents and injuries may be held liable. To keep in touch with parties that could possibly be at fault, it is important to get their information, such as their names, addresses, contact numbers, and license plate numbers.

Remember that these things are done directly after a car accident, as there are many other things you should do beyond the car accident scene, such as calling for your insurance, taking care of medical costs, and evaluating the damage to your property. The key is to stay calm to avoid further damages.

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If You are Suffering due to a Defective Zimmer Biomet Comprehensive Reverse Shoulder System, then You may be Eligible for Compensation

Posted by on Feb 20, 2017

On December 15, 2016, Zimmer Biomet, manufacturer of Comprehensive Reverse Shoulder System Humeral Tray, recalled more than 3,000 pieces of said device after it was discovered that the device was fracturing at a higher rate than is stated in its labeling. According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), fractures can result in revision surgeries that can lead to serious adverse health consequences, including permanent loss of shoulder function, infection, or death (though rarely).

The shoulder is made up of three bones: the humerus, or the upper arm bone; the scapula, or the shoulder blade; and, the clavicle, which is the collarbone. In this bones are found the articular cartilage and the synovial membrane. The first, which covers the surfaces of the bones, is a smooth substance that protects and enables the bones to move easily; the second, which is a thin, smooth tissue, produces a small amount of fluid that lubricates the cartilage. These two, with the tendons and muscles that surround and providing e stability and support to the shoulder, enable the shoulder to rotate and move in a great range of motion – greater than any other ball-and-socket joint in the body.

Despite all the shoulder support and protection, certain conditions and diseases can cause the shoulder bone to fracture or destroy the joint cartilage or shoulder joint, resulting to inflammation, extreme joint pain and/or a limited range of shoulder motion. To those suffering from any (or a combination of these conditions), doctors recommended shoulder replacement surgery, especially if the more conservative or non-surgical methods no longer work. The surgery would replace damaged parts of the shoulder with artificial components, called prosthesis. Some surgeries are aimed at replacing only the ball or the head of the humerus bone, or replacing the glenoid, or the ball and the socket. Whichever part is replaced, this surgery guarantees relief from pain, and restoration of shoulder strength, motion and function.

The Comprehensive Reverse Shoulder, in particular, is a surgically implanted shoulder replacement device that is designed to help restore arm movement. This device is beneficial, especially to patients with previously failed shoulder joint replacement, or those with rotator cuff tears who have developed a severe type of shoulder arthritis known as arthropathy.

Due to the high rate of device failure, specifically fracturing, it is recommended that patients who experience increased shoulder pain or limited mobility following the implantation file a Zimmer shoulder lawsuit.

Those who suffer a serious fracture due to a defective Zimmer Biomet comprehensive reverse shoulder system may be eligible for compensation for their pain, suffering, medical bills, and other damages. Zimmer shoulder lawsuit lawyers believe that medical device manufacturers have a responsibility to properly test and label their devices, and if those systems fail, they should be held accountable for the injuries they cause.

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All You Need To Know About The New Overtime Rule

Posted by on Oct 17, 2016

Before the end of the year, a new ruling on overtime pay will take effect. As published in the website of Williams Kherher, the new ruling will expand eligibility to workers with higher salaries thus increasing wage protection for many employees. Released by the Department of Labor, the new ruling will be implemented by December 2016. The new rule increased the white collar exemption threshold of the Fair Labor Standards Act.

Signed into law by President Barack Obama, the new regulations will increase the salary threshold from $445 weekly to $913 weekly. This requires businesses to start monitoring the house of exempted employees whose earnings are below the $913 weekly limit. The new rule by the Department of Labor is based on the fact that the number of workers who are working extended hours without being paid is increasing. The new law was signed by Obama last March 2014.

The last time the white collar exemption level was increased was in 1975. Currently, the current salary threshold of $23,000 yearly is below the poverty line. In 1975, the amount placed a worker at the upper 38 percent of the workforce. In 2015, the poverty level for a family of four was $24,008 per year. One advantage of the new rule is that it will improve company behavior by acting as a detriment to larger companies to cut corners in paying overtime wage to employees.

However, the new rule will also convert salaried workers to hourly thus losing certain benefits and prestige. In addition, it will result to lesser flexibility for the employees to work extended hours. It will also restrict the use of email or work-related phone calls after working hours.

Whether or not the new rule will have a positive or negative effect on employees will be known once it takes effect before the end of the year.

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Comparative vs Contributory Negligence : Who Is At Fault During An Accident ?

Posted by on Jun 15, 2016

During car accidents, it is the job of a judge to determine who is at fault in case of injuries or deaths. It is but fair to make someone liable for accidents in order to determine who will shoulder the cost. Determining liability can be easy if only one person is to be blamed. But if there is more than driver who caused the accident, everything will depend on the state where the crash happened.

When it comes to determining fault in a car accident, negligence can either be comparative or contributory. According to the website of the Law Offices of Yvonne M. Fraser, 13 states are adopting the comparative negligence rule. Under this system, the plaintiff may still be able to collect damages even if they were partially to blame for the accident. Depending on the action that contributed to the accident, the cost of damages that the plaintiff may be able to collect will be greatly reduced. The level of fault will be compared and the amount of damage will be based on their contribution to the fault.

Comparative negligence can be further divided into modified comparative negligence – 51% rule and modified comparative negligence – 50% rule. There are 33 states that follow the modified comparative negligence rule and from that number, 21 states adopt the modified comparative negligence – 51% rule.Under this system, the plaintiff can only collect damages if their level of fault is not more than 51%. On the other hand, the 12 remaining states adopting comparative negligence adopt the modified comparative negligence – 50% rule. This means that if the plaintiff is responsible for half of the fault, they will not be entitled to receive damages from the accident.

In contributory negligence, if the plaintiff was partially responsible for the accident, they would not be entitled to receive any damages from the accident. Suppose the Car A collided with Car B and the crash resulted to the injury of the driver of Car A who partially caused the accident, Car A’s driver will not receive any damages since he had a contribution to the accident. Only four states and District of Columbia adopt the pure contributory negligence rule.

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Scaffolding Collapse Dangers

Posted by on Feb 5, 2016

The US Department of Labor knows how risky working in a construction site can be. All the sharp and heavy tools and machinery, hazardous substances, greasy and dusty surroundings, electrical wires extending from one working area to another, jobs that need to be done on top of stairs, ladders or scaffolds, uneven floors, and so forth; any of these can cause accidents and injuries which may end either a worker’s career or life. According to the US Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics, the number of work-related accidents and illnesses are also always higher in construction sites than in any other type of working environment, and that the identified top four causes of injuries are falls, electrocution, getting caught-in-between, and being struck (by a construction equipment or vehicle, or by a falling object).

According to the website of Williams Kherkher, all types of working environments should be kept healthy and safe for all workers/employees. This duty of ensuring safety and health in the workplace is placed by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) under the care of employers. Due to this, employers should make sure that they hire only qualified employees, that all employees are trained on how to keep their workplace safe and about the use/operation of dangerous tools and hazardous substances, that standard safety equipment can be found in designated places, and that employees are provided with safety gears and that these are properly worn in work areas.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is the branch of the federal government that enforces the healthy and safe workplace rule. It also sets standards on the proper use construction equipment and tools to ensure the safety of workers in general. One example of these standards is the 1971 regulation on the requirements regarding the use of scaffolds.

Scaffolds are provisional work platforms used in construction work. These provide support for the workers and the materials they will use. Some scaffolds are self-supporting, meaning these are firmly supported by poles or frames solidly positioned on the ground; others are called “suspension” scaffolds since these are supported with pulleys and ropes from overhead. Whether built from the ground or suspended from overhead, the greatest danger facing workers is scaffolding collapse, a consequence of scaffolds not properly assembled or if the number of workers and the weight of materials on the scaffold are too much for it to support. For added worker support, OSHA also requires the incorporation of guardrails to which workers can hold onto in cases of slips.

Despite the rules, training on safety, and personal duty to observe safety measures, accidents still occur, often with debilitating effects on the worker. If a scaffold collapses due to the incompetence or negligence of someone, even of an employer, the injured worker can either, under certain conditions, file a civil lawsuit against his or her employer or seek compensation with the Workers’ Compensation insurance program but will have to waive his or her right of suing his or her employer.

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Car Insurance Claim

Posted by on Nov 1, 2015

Having your vehicle vandalized can undoubtedly cause an issue that is very big. Vandalism may come in many varieties, including damaged windows and mirrors, broken lights, graffiti or keyed in scrapes, and slashed tired. It is crucial to recognize the steps that are essential to consider so as to offset the issues due to someone else’s deliberate damage to your own property. Yet, submitting an automobile insurance claim can be rather boring. Keep in mind the following tips to ensure the procedure can as convenient for you as possible.

First, upon viewing your car vandalized contact the police. Most car insurance companies will require that the claim is gone with by a police report you document. The earlier you report to functionaries, the faster it is possible to get your auto insurance claim to be pursued by the required documents. In the event that you observe any injury to your car, call a police officer immediately and record the event without hesitation. Sometimes, your quick reporting also can assist policemen catch the perpetrator earlier.

Another important suggestion to bear in mind is always to document the damage done to your vehicle. Take pictures of the way your car was vandalized so they can be submitted by you alongside your auto insurance claim. It is also possible to contain that to supply a point-of-reference to your insurer, in case you have pretty current images of your vehicle before the vandalism incident.

Finally, remember to get hold of your insurance carrier when you’re done reporting the vandalism to the police. Having an all-inclusive coverage, you may rest assured that the vehicle’s repairs will probably be properly covered with no issue. To formally record your claim, you’re going to have to provide pertinent advice to your insurance provider. This can contain details like after the vandalism and the full description of the model, updates, and even recent fixes of your vehicle and where your car was located before.

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Negative Effects of Depakote

Posted by on Oct 31, 2015

For those who have even gotten on a commercial plane, among the very first things they are going to let you know that in the event of a cabin decompression, you must place on your oxygen mask first before helping your child. It is because if you should be disabled, you may be unable to help anyone efficiently. The same is true in the instance that you need to be mindful of your mental as well as physical health before you can begin taking care of your kids.

It can be very hard to work normally, should you are afflicted with migraine headaches, or epilepsy, bipolar disorder. Thankfully, there are anti-seizure and mood-stabilizing drugs which will help control the symptoms of these medical conditions. Certainly one of these is for example Depakote (valproate), for epileptic seizures and migraine down the road, as well as that has been accepted by the FDA for the treatment of bipolar disorder in 1983.

According to the site, www.williamskherkher.com/practice-areas/defective-pharmaceuticals/depakote-lawsuit/, this warning is all well and good for women who are pregnant or planning to conceive, but as stated by the site, several girls on the medication usually are not even aware they are pregnant till it is too late. It’s definitely much too late for mothers people and kids who are already living together with the implications of these side effects.

If you’re one of the ones that are unlucky. you may be eligible for financial settlement from the manufacturer. Sadly, women that simply take with Depakote during their maternity risk reduced cognitive development in their own kids.

A connection between certain birth defects like cleft palette and additional digits (polydactyl) had already been established, but it was only in 2011 the US Food and Drug Administration had enough information to concern a notice that it can adversely impact a child’s mental development. Depakote is presently a Pregnancy class D, but you can find indicators it will be re-categorized as X, meaning the risk of damage to the fetus outweighs the potential advantages of the medicine.

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