What you need to know about proper tree inspections

The biggest question to ask when surveying trees near one’s house is: are my trees safe? If a low hanging or leaning tree falls on your house, it will take down the house with it. A tree shouldn’t cause tens of thousands of dollars in property damage if it was easily avoidable. A tree should be a benefit to its community and local environment. Ideally, a certified tree expert or arborist should come out and inspect each tree. However, we can run down some key things to look out for when inspecting one’s own trees.

The most important thing is to make sure one’s trees are not particularly low hanging or leaning as we have previously mentioned. The property costs alone are staggering. If a tree in your yard falls on your neighbor’s property, determining who is at fault can be a legal nightmare. There are other risks besides tree falling and property damage. The International Society of Arborists (or ISA) outlines a list of risk factors to look out for when owning a tree.

  • A tree having a forked trunk
  • A tree in a wet with shallow soil
  • Open trunk or branch cavity
  • Nearby and potentially hazardous electrical lines
  • Branches that are broken or partially attached to the trunk

There are many more risks to look out of. A tree inspection is to make sure that the tree is healthy but also that the tree doesn’t harm you or your property. Hamlin Tree Care recommends having one’s trees inspected every three to fours years. Since trees live hundreds of years, this is a good frequency of inspection. There are always many different fungi and diseases that can destroy a tree from the inside. Oak Wilt is a disease that affects oak trees in central Texas and was considered an epidemic back in the 90’s. It spreads through the root system to neighboring trees and is almost always fatal. Oak wilts telltale sign is that is premature changes a healthy tree’s color to brown regardless of the season.

Trees create their own ecosystems around them and breath life into every living thing. It’s vital that they are checked every year or so for any issues that may be brewing within their bark. Doing a preliminary inspection as a homeowner can be beneficial in pointing out the problem to an arborist. Arborists know exactly what to look out for when inspecting a tree. Many diseases and pests are within the tree or the root system and need special equipment to diagnose properly.When you have a tree in your yard, you’re taking on the responsibility to keep a piece of nature healthy. It can be a lot of work, but also very rewarding. If a tree is potentially dangerous or sickly it’s not the end of the world. It’s an arborists job to ensure that a tree can be as healthy as it can and back to swaying in the wind.

When you have a tree in your yard, you’re taking on the responsibility to keep a piece of nature healthy. It can be a lot of work, but also very rewarding. If a tree is potentially dangerous or sickly it’s not the end of the world. It’s an arborists job to ensure that a tree can be as healthy as it can and back to swaying in the wind.

What is Wrongful Death?

Wrongful death occurs when a person loses his life because of another person, usually involving negligence, recklessness, or misconduct. In other words, a person has undeservingly died. The only positive thing that comes with a wrongful death is the possibility of the victim’s family members to receive compensation from the responsible party.
The website www.habush.com has listed the elements needed in a legitimate wrongful death case:

  • The death of a human being
  • Caused by negligence of another person, company, or entity
  • The survival of family members who are suffering monetary injury as a result of the death
  • The appointment of a personal representative for the decedent’s estate

The monetary injury stated above can come in many forms. First, there is the obvious medical costs while the person has not yet died and the funeral costs when he has finally succumbed. Second, there is the lost wages, especially if the victim is the primary financer in the family. Third, there is the lost benefits, including healthcare, social security, and pension plans.
Lost companionship, though considered as one of the damages of wrongful death, does not necessarily translate to compensation from the responsible party, but it helps as an argument in winning the case, and possibly, increasing the settlement.
But how does wrongful death even occur? Usually, it comes in the form of traffic accidents involving reckless drivers, medical accidents involving incompetent or negligent medical professionals, product accidents involving designers who have created inherently dangerous designs and manufacturers who have used poor materials and manufacturing techniques, premises accidents involving property owners who have failed to make their places safe, and workplace accidents involving employers who have failed to make safety regulations or supervisors who have failed to enforce the regulations.
Losing a loved one, especially because of somebody else’s fault, is always a tragic experience. But the legal concept called wrongful death at least gives surviving family members some hope that justice will be served.

Holding Cruise Ships Liable for Errors Committed by Their Medical Staff

Before 2014, many cruise companies that faced medical malpractice lawsuits were able to get these legal actions dismissed even before trial. Prior to 2014, courts decisions have always been in the favor of cruise companies, exempting them from any legal responsibility (even if the medical team that these have on board has failed to provide passengers the treatment they need) and telling patients that they should not demand from ships’ doctors and nurses the same level of medical care as on land; besides, ship doctors and nurses are beyond the direct control of cruise lines since they are private contractors.

This aura of immunity from medical malpractice is a result of decades of court decisions that have consistently acquitted cruise liners from medical negligence/liability. One case cruise companies rely upon is the 1988 Barbetta v. S.S. Bermuda Star lawsuit, wherein the court ruled that the duty of a carrier is to make sure that it employs a competent and duly qualified doctor; failure to do so would be violation of its duty. If the doctor hired, however, commits an act of (medical) negligence, then he/she alone, not the carrier, will be held accountable for whatever harm or injury such negligence results to.

A 2014 incident that occurred onboard one famous cruise ship, however, led judges to reconsider the soundness of exempting cruise ships from any medical liability. This is based on the following facts:

  • Doctors and nurses are presented as ship personnel or employees and that their wearing of the cruise ship uniform is direct proof of this;
  • Today’s cruise ships have advanced laboratories, intensive care units and technologies which will easily enable their medical personnel to link with medical experts on shore through live video conferencing; and,
  • Cruise ships take pride in their onboard medical center, making sure that this is included in their promotional materials.

Fortunately, the only treatment required by most travelers is remedy for bruises, indigestion, sea sickness and sun burns. But, though safe from any serious medical condition, they will definitely not be safe from expensive infirmary bills, which most health plans do not cover, by the way. As regards those whose condition really needs emergency attention (like drowning, stroke, heart attack, allergic reactions and appendicitis) the major issue is that most likely they will not receive the treatment they need on time or, even if they would be treated, in many instances, treatment will be from the hands of those who lack training or who are more panicky than in control of what they are doing.

In its website, the law firm Louis A. Vucci, PA, points out the unnecessary risk of injury suffered by many cruise passengers at the hands of members of a ship’s medical staff who lack training, especially for emergency situations, or who are not just capable of providing the standard of care that passengers should receive.

Though the laws governing cruise ship accidents are much more complex than the laws governing land accidents, there will always be a legal means for passengers, who get injured in cruise holidays, to get the compensation that they legally deserve. There are different ways through which injured passengers may seek and receive compensation; however, the best means may be by being represented by a highly-qualified cruise ship injury lawyer.

Slip and Fall Accidents in Schools

Tripping, slipping, and falling are very common accidents, and they may result into injuries such as head trauma, neck strains, back problems, fractures, especially in the arm, leg, and hip area, and sprains. Property owners may be held responsible for these kinds of accidents. According to the personal injury website alimokaramlawfirm.com, a negligent party may be held liable for the injury of an innocent party. In the case of tripping, slipping, and falling, the negligent party may be the property owner, and the innocent party may be the visitor.

This kind of accident can be very devastating for children, especially because they can be energetic and trigger a more forceful accident and they can be very fragile and get injured easily.

Indoor slip and fall

Slip and fall accidents can happen anywhere, may it be indoor or outdoor. They are generally triggered by certain factors. In the case of indoor slip and fall accidents, these factors include but are not limited to the following:

  • Cylindrical objects such as pencils, pens, and markers
  • Defective railings, stairs, escalators, and elevators
  • Loose cables
  • Obstructions like loose cabinets and chairs
  • Platforms and other elevated spaces
  • Slippery substances such as drinks and air condition leaks
  • Poor quality floor wax
  • Worn carpets and rugs
  • Outdoor slip and fall

Causes of outdoor slip and fall accidents are generally associated with the property owners’ poor maintenance. The factors that may be involved in outdoor slip and fall accidents include but are not limited to the following:

  • Buildup of snow and ice on the roof
  • Leaking pipes
  • Pile of leaves
  • Pool of water
  • Potholes and other uneven surfaces
  • Snow and ice on pavement
  • Trash and other debris
  • Duty of care

Schools have the duty of student safety, so if a student has been hurt, that duty is breached, and they may be held liable, especially if the injury has been sustained because of the schools’ negligence. School staff, such as teachers and janitors, should also know better. They should be aware of possible hazards and keep them away from the students.

Millions of Defective Car and/or Car Parts are being Recalled Every Year

The Highway Safety Act of 1970, which established the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), also gave the NHTSA the authority to issue vehicle safety standards and to require manufacturers to recall vehicles that have safety-related defects or do not meet Federal safety standards. This authority has, thus far, resulted to the recall of 42 million child safety seats, 46 million tires, 66 million pieces of motor vehicle equipment, and more than 390 million defective cars, trucks, buses, motorcycles, mopeds and recreational vehicles.

Since the 1970s, the yearly total of fatal motor vehicle accidents in the U.S. has been very significantly reduced – from more than 50,000 to a little more than 30,000. This number, however, is still high, considering the fact that more than 90% of fatal traffic accidents, based on studies by the NHTSA, is due to driver error. The remaining percentage is blamed on faults committed either by those assigned to construct and maintain roads, highways and bridges, or manufacturers of vehicles.

Defective vehicles, as well as defective vehicle parts, threaten the safety of everyone on the road. Though millions of recalls continue to be made every year, majority of these involve only minor issues and a simple repair-and-replace maneuver can solve the issue. However, there have been recalls due to vehicles or vehicle parts which have caused serious injuries and deaths. A number of these recalls include the following:

Suspension bolt coming loose and disabling the steering column. About 5.8 million General Motors cars owners were affected by this defect in 1981.

Fuel lines that cracked and spilled gasoline onto the engine, setting the vehicle on fire. About 11,500 Ford Escapes needed to be recalled by Ford Motor Company.

Car ignition starting up by itself. This ignition device was equipped into 7.9 million Ford vehicles manufactured between 1988 and 1993. There were instances when the car would start even during the middle of the night while the owner is asleep.

Cruise Control Switches. This cruise control, can short-out and catch fire anytime even if you are not using your vehicle. About 14.9 million Ford cars and trucks manufactured between 1991 and 2004 were affected by this defect.

Blowing tires from Firestone. This issue involved faulty tires with tread that separated from the steel belts. This tire defect was linked to 200 deaths which, eventually, resulted to 6.5 million of these faulty tires getting recalled.

Unintended acceleration. This made cars speed up on their own. Audi 5000 in the 1980s and Toyota in 2010 affected by this defect. Nine million Toyota cars were recalled in 2010; also, the defect was linked to 31 deaths).

Power steering defect and a faulty ignition-switch. The defect was linked to 13 deaths. It resulted to the recall of 2.6 million General Motors vehicles in 2014.

Exploding air bags. In the U.S., this defective air bag caused 10 deaths and more than 100 injuries. It was used by 14 different automakers and installed in more than million vehicles worldwide (more than 30 million in the U.S.). This has been the biggest recall in the history of the auto industry.

In its website, the law firm Habush Habush & Rottier S.C. ® points out the responsibility of automobile manufacturers in ensuring that their vehicles are safe for motorists. However, despite recent advances in automotive technology, a number of motor vehicle components are still prone to defects and malfunctions that can have devastating consequences for accident victims. Vehicle manufacturers may be held liable when automotive defects lead to car accidents. Injured drivers, passengers and other harmed road users may also be able to take legal action and seek compensation for their pains, sufferings and losses.

Deceptive Trade Practices – An Overview

In the conduct of business, we want to give ourselves a competitive advantage in order to attract the attention of potential customers. This is where marketing and promotional efforts come in. Unfortunately, some businesses go over board to the point of resorting to illegal practices in order to get the advantage that they want. According to the website of Slater Pugh, Ltd. LLP, engaging in such unlawful practices may subject businesses to lawsuits.

A deceptive trade practice is defined as an activity that is likely to mislead the public especially the consumers. It is illegal due to the negative effects it can have on consumers and general public. Federal and state laws prohibit the use of such practices. There are different types of deceptive practices that businesses should avoid and here are some of them:

Price Deception

This is an example of an advertisement that provides customers with incorrect or misleading information about the price of a certain product. According to the Federal Trade Commission, advertisements must fully disclose the price that a consumer will pay for a product. It should also be transparent with any discounts, sales, or markdowns.

Bait and Switch

In bait and switch, the advertiser makes a certain claim about the price or availability of a product but with no intention to really sell the product or sell it for a higher price. When the customer responds to the advertisement, the advertiser will take advantage and sell a more expensive product or a different price that was advertised.

Quality or Origin Deception

Deceiving consumers about quality or origin without substantiating it is another illegal practice. Thus, you cannot claim that a product was “Made in the USA” if it was manufactured in another country. Likewise, you need to fully disclose any defects in quality or if the product is useful for other purposes it was not adequately designed for.

False Environmental Claims

The Federal Trade Commission also warns businesses on using misleading environmental claims such as “recycled,” “biodegradable,” “compostable,” or environmental-friendly.” Such claims should be supported by “competent and reliable scientific evidence.” They can mislead customers even if some part has environmental attributes but major components do not.

Ways to Afford Nursing Home Costs for Your Loved One

That more than 40 percent of senior citizens in the US will require some period of care in a nursing home facility and that majority of people who are at least 65 years old will need some type of long-term care services are two factual information released by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

In February of 2015, the Centers for Disease Control and prevention (CDC) counted 15,700 nursing homes in the US that served as dwelling places to 1.4 million residents, majority of whom are senior citizens who are in need of more attention and supervision than what a residential facility can provide. These seniors’ needs include assistance in: daily hygienic concerns, like bathing, incontinence and dressing; managing medications; eating and other activities.

Despite the need to have seniors’ needs addressed, sending them to a nursing home is not really advantageous to families directly affected. First, these seniors are family members – one’s mom or dad, or another very close kin. Second, news about nursing home abuse is cause for worry and, third, the large costs associated with nursing home care can cause a major imbalance in a family’s financial situation.

On its website, SeniorAdvice.com says that for a senior family member to stay in a nursing home, his or her family will have to pay approximately $222 every day for a semi-private room or $248 per day for a private room; this means a staggering $81,000 or $90,500 every year. Costs, however, still varies, depending on a senior’s medical situation, geographical location, and length of stay.

While paying nursing home and other long-term care costs can be done out of pocket or out of a retirement account, this should not be a family’s or a senior’s only available means or even primary option because costs can definitely deplete all savings and still this will not be enough to cover everything that needs to be paid.

One good source of financial help is Medicare, which covers a maximum of 100 days stay in a nursing home facility. A much better source, however, is long-term care insurance, but purchase of one should be done years before your loved one reaches his or her senior years or while he or she is still healthy. This is one move that requires advance planning since no insurance firm will sell you a long-term care policy for seniors after your senior family member has moved into a nursing home facility.

With planning done which will result to addressing costs associated with a nursing home, the only concern you and other family members will need to address is to which nursing home you will take your loved one. There may be hundreds of nursing homes in your state but you should know that not all of these are really capable of providing the quality care they promise to provide.

How Can You Treat a Blood Clot?

Blood clots can be incredibly dangerous and potentially fatal circumstances, which is why they are often taken so seriously. Can they be treated, however? The answer is yes.

There have been some instances, even that of people who have suffered Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT), where they have been able to make practically full recoveries. It isn’t easy, however, but it is definitely possible. Physical therapy, anticoagulant medication, a regular diet, and moderate exercise can stimulate the body into repairing itself.

There have been instances where a patient who suffered from DVT who used to have an active, sporty lifestyle was told she could never run again but, determined to maintain her healthy regimen, was able to run marathons again after patient and disciplined therapy and medication. This process is slow and arduous but a recovery can be done.

Some people, however, are more at risk for blood clots than others. This can be a natural condition – pregnant women and diabetic people are more prone to blood clotting than others, for example – but according to the website of the lawyers with Habush Habush and Rottier S.C., people can also be made more susceptible to blood clots than others due to extreme physical trauma. Something like a devastating injury-causing accident or even a medical mishap may cause this to happen.

There are some preventative measures that are available for people with special conditions such as this. There are anticoagulant drugs available on the market but there is also the option to have a device called an IVC filter installed into one’s inferior vena cava in order to catch clots before they can reach the lungs and cause more damage, such as pulmonary embolism. However, even these devices present their own dangers should they be faulty – like the cases with Bard G2 IVC Filters.

Be wary, then, that help you get be not one that does you more harm.

Types of Criminal Defense

In the American Legal system, someone accused of crime is considered innocent until proven guilty. This means that the burden of proving the guilt of the accused falls on the prosecutor. This also means that the accused is entitled to a defense of his or her actions. There are many different types of criminal defenses. Some of the more common defenses are insanity, automatism, intoxication, mistake of fact, and self defense.

Insanity is one of the more often dramatized criminal defenses, however in reality it remains one of the most difficult to prove. When one pleads “not guilty by reason of insanity” their lawyer aims to prove that their mental state at the time led to a lack of understanding of the wrongfulness of their actions. If one is found “not guilty for reason of insanity,” the accused may be instead sentenced to treatment in a medical facility.

Another common type of criminal defense is self-defense. In cases of self-defense, the accused aims to prove that whatever criminal actions were taken were necessary to protect themselves. It is important that the actions taken were proportional to the threat. Id this is proven, their actions are not considered criminal and they face no punishment.

A third common criminal defense is duress. This means that the accused was forced to commit an unlawful act because of a specific threat to their life or threat of serious injury. They must have been ordered to commit this specific crime or face specific consequences.

According to the website of Lewisville criminal lawyer Alexander and Associates, depending on the severity of the alleged crime, an accused suspect may face time in prison, hefty fines, and years of probation as a direct result of a criminal conviction. These severe consequences lead many accused to seek the best defense possible should they find themselves accused of a crime. Should you find yourself accused of criminal activity, contact a criminal defense lawyer in your area.

Medical Dangers and Birth Defects

When pregnant, it is important to consider not just your own health, but the heath of your unborn child. All mothers intend to do what is best for their children. However, in many unfortunate cases, medication which can be beneficial to your health can be severely detrimental to the health of your child. In these tragic cases, moderate to severe birth defects can result.

A recent example of this unfortunate occurrence was the discovery of potential links between the morning sickness drug Zofran and birth defects. Originally intended to aid the nausea of patients undergoing cancer treatment such as chemotherapy, many women were unfortunately prescribed this drug off label to aid their severe morning sickness. According to the website of Williams Kherkher lists the common potential birth defects resulting from the use of this drug as congenital heart defects, cleft lip, and cleft palate.

It is vitally important to be aware of these dangers as you care for yourself and your unborn child. However, if you were not properly informed or warned of the severely detrimental side effects of a particular medication and your child was born with a disorder or birth defect, you may be entitled to compensation for the medical expenses and other losses associated with their condition.

In addition to dangers posed by medications, some babies are born with injuries or disabilities because of the negligence of a medical professional either before, during, or shortly after a child’s birth. One tragically common disorder that can result from such circumstances is cerebral palsy. The website of the Driscoll Firm defines cerebral palsy as “a large group of motor conditions that result in varying degrees of physical disability; this exists within the cerebrum, and primarily affects a patient’s motor skills and cognitive abilities.” Sadly, medical malpractice has been found to be responsible for a surprising amount of cerebral palsy cases of varying severity.