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http://blog.caesarnapoli.com/files/2016/12/102026290-coca-cola-pepsi-soda.1910x1000-300x157.jpgCristin Kearns, a fellow at University of California, San Francisco, recently uncovered documents that reveal decades of deception and bribery in the sugar industry that implicates elite professors and the United States government. These revelations not only shed light on the way corporations wield power in American politics and culture; they also have significant legal ramifications.

Plaintiffs’ attorneys have struggled for years to hold the sugar and sugar-sweetened beverage industries accountable for their misleading advertising, targeting of children, and disproportionate effect on the United States’ obesity epidemic. In case after case, Big Sugar has successfully argued that consumers need to take responsibility for their own nutritional choices, even bad ones.

This report by Ms. Kearns adds a new element to the story: deception.
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Uber-app-300x225When you click “accept” under the multi-paragraph “Terms and Conditions” portion of the Uber app, are you really bound by those terms? How about if those terms strip you of your constitutional rights?

Uber, the cell-phone based transportation company, is working to make sure the answer to both of those questions is an unambiguous “Yes.” Now, with their new terms of use, which became effective on November 21, 2016, Uber may have succeeded.

At stake is nothing less than your constitutional right to sue a wrongdoer in court. Uber is once again seeking to waive the customer’s right to seek justice in a court of law even in such cases of death or passenger sexual assault.
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trend-gas-tank-fire-300x169Remington Walden, a 4-year-old boy from Georgia, was driving with his aunt on a spring day in 2012 when a pickup truck rammed into the back of their 1999 Jeep Grand Cherokee. Though the pickup truck caused only minor exterior damage to the Jeep, it punctured the vehicle’s fuel tank. Within seconds, Remington Walden, who was fully conscious, was engulfed in flames. He died about a minute later.

Walden’s death was many things: a tragedy, a life taken too soon, and every parent’s worst nightmare. It was not, however, unavoidable. Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, which manages the Jeep brand, was officially warned on at least three separate occasions that 1993–2004 Jeep Grand Cherokees had a substantial design defect. The fuel tanks were mounted behind the rear axle, an anomaly in the car industry, making them extremely vulnerable in rear-end collisions. When hit even at low speeds, the tanks produced deadly fires.
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Emergency-Room-300x169All of us depend on doctors and hospital workers for treatment when we are sick or injured. Many times they are successful, saving our lives or the lives of our loved ones. But hospitals are far from infallible. 195,000 people die each year in American hospitals due to potentially preventable medical errors. The following guide will give you the information you need to avoid being one of those statistics.

Before you Get to the Hospital:
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2AEE385400000578-3178432-Dame_Sally_has_called_before_for_the_development_of_new_antibiot-a-20_1438165403058-300x231If you only read Sharley McMullen’s death certificate, you would think she passed away as the result of respiratory failure and septic shock. The truth is much more alarming.

McMullen, a healthy 72-year old woman from California, was finishing up treatment for a benign stomach ulcer when she contracted an infectious bacterial disease in the hospital where she was being treated. Five weeks later, she was dead. In a morbid twist of fate, the hospital that was supposed to heal her caused her death.
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Nursing-home-resident-1-300x196Millions of nursing home residents have signed away their right to sue their nursing home, regardless of whether they were sexually assaulted, physically abused or suffered serious injuries as a result of their care. The worst part is: these residents may not even know it. Forced arbitration clauses, which are often hidden in nursing home contracts that families sign, effectively force patients to renounce their ability to go to court, forcing them into binding private arbitration.

Fortunately, thanks to the intervention of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), nursing homes have been barred from inserting forced arbitration clauses as of November 28, 2016. This has significant ramifications that you need to know about.
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Surgery-300x200Bringing suit for compensation against a doctor who, through his or her own negligence, caused you or a loved one injury is a fundamental right guaranteed to all citizens. Unfortunately, this right has been under attack for years.

As a result, the road to recovery for patients in medical negligence cases is far more difficult and expensive than it once was. Well-documented barriers, such as the high costs of trying a medical malpractice case (injured victims must hire a medical expert before filing suit) and reduced attorney fees on recovery have effectively barred lesser but legitimate injury claims from ever seeing the inside of a courtroom. In addition, hiring a medical expert to testify is not always easy because physicians who testify against other physicians risk being shunned in their profession going forward.

Sadly, we now write about a new barrier to injured victims.
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IMG_7344Best-1024x678-300x199The New York City Department of Transportation enjoyed a small victory last week with the announcement that the city has surpassed its goal of constructing 15 miles of fully protected bike lanes in 2016. By the end of this year, 18 miles will be completed.

This achievement has been overshadowed by another statistic, however. With 3 months left in the year, New York has seen 17 cyclist deaths so far in 2016. That is already 2 more deaths than 2015’s tally.

The increase in deaths diminishes hope for the success of Vision Zero, Mayor Bill de Blasio’s plan to eliminate traffic deaths by 2020.
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http://blog.caesarnapoli.com/files/2016/09/article-urn-publicid-ap.org-53f5951543144a3cbd943ba2d18c90ef-4VJWyIgPfj76a54cf882542add01-115_634x429-300x203.jpg17 New York City construction workers died last year in work-related incidents. That is, if you ask the New York Committee for Occupational Safety and Health. According to the Department of Buildings, only 12 construction workers lost their lives on the job.

The discrepancy between these two numbers stems from conflicting definitions of a construction-related death, and it is indicative of the absence of clear, consistent data in an industry that has seen both tremendous growth and a surge in preventable deaths over the last 5 years.

The majority of the construction worker fatalities in the last year occurred on non-union sites—the New York Committee for Occupational Safety and Health identified 15 out of 17 deaths as non-union. However, there is disagreement as to how much of the industry is made up of non-union workers.
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AmyM-300x261Earlier this year, we covered an analysis published by the BMJ that identified preventable medical errors as the 3rd leading cause of death in the U.S.

Recently, a study funded by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services found that nearly one third of patients admitted to rehab centers experience illness or injuries as a result of their medical care.

Dr. David Classen, an infectious disease specialist at the University of Utah School of Medicine who played a key role in the study, stresses the importance of taking immediate steps to curb medical errors. “If the first rule of health care is ‘Do no harm,’ then we’re failing,” Dr. Classen said.
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