Articles Tagged with Injuries To Children

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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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law25n-3-web-300x200Why will Dylan Farrow never be able to bring her father Woody Allen to court for allegedly sexually abusing her when she was 7-years-old?

Why is Bridie Farrell unable to press charges against Olympic speedskater and former US Speedskating President Andrew Gabel for allegedly abusing her when she was 15?

Both of these men are protected by statutes of limitations.
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7yearoldchokeslunch-300x169This weekend, as families across the country celebrated Halloween, one Brooklyn mother was forced to say goodbye to her 7-year-old daughter after the little girl choked on her school lunch.

PS 250 first-grader Noelia Echavarria had complained about feeling rushed during school lunches before. During her lunch period on October 21st, she choked on a sandwich. Her family believes she might have been hurrying to finish before the lunch period ended.

One teacher flagged down an EMT that happened to be parked in front of the school. The EMT rushed to Noelia’s aid, but the scene he found inside was unexpected.
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140828183919-04-pb-trial-story-top-300x182For over 30 years, the Peanut Corporation of America (PCA) marketed itself as “the Processor of the World’s Finest Peanut Products.” However, a salmonella outbreak at the peanut plant in 2008 and 2009 infected 714 people across the United States, killing 9.
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25706027-300x169The crane that collapsed in Mecca’s Grand Mosque in Saudi Arabia last week killed at least 107 worshippers and injured over 200 more. In the face of such a large-scale tragedy, we expected to hear an explanation from the Saudi Binladin Group, the construction conglomerate responsible, or at the very least an apology.

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Kevin-Barr-200x300Lake Forest, CA teenager Kevin Barr hasn’t had it easy. Kevin was born 25 weeks premature, and suffered throughout his life from a seizure disorder as well as cerebral palsy.

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It was a parent’s worst nightmare. A young child caught in a freak auto collision during one of the few times of the day that he was left unsupervised.Jackie K. was just ten years old, walking with his backpack on his way to school when a car jumped the curb and ran him over. Thankfully Jackie’s injuries did not prove fatal, but they did leave him without a left foot. The incident robbed Jackie of the ability to play sports or even to walk normally for the rest of his life.Was there any way this collision could have been avoided? Only if Jian Huang, the driver of the vehicle that struck Jackie, hadn’t decided to go out drinking the night before and drive home that morning still intoxicated. Jian had treated himself to quite a night, drinking at a well-known Brooklyn karaoke bar with an escort until midnight, and then moving to an illegal after hours club during the morning hours.Jian was convicted and sentenced to a prison term as a result of his actions, but what about Jackie and his family? Jian’s punishment wouldn’t help pay Jackie’s hospital bills, and it certainly wouldn’t compensate him for the pain he endured or the mobility that he would never regain.When Jackie’s family came to my office seeking justice for the boy’s injuries, I had the difficult task of identifying which of the responsible parties, if any, had the means to compensate Jackie appropriately.While Jian was the obvious choice to seek damages from, his insurance policy was extremely limited, and would do little to help Jackie’s family pay his bills. Likewise the illegal after hours club that Jian visited that night had no insurance policy, and it disbanded immediately following Jackie’s tragedy.The karaoke bar that served Jian until midnight had a million dollar insurance policy, which would go a long way towards helping Jackie’s family. However there was no way I could prove that the drinks they served Jian early in the night could have affected his driving nearly eight hours later. It seemed as though Jackie and his family were going to have to settle for the small amount of money Jian’s insurance policy could offer.Jackie’s odds were looking bleak until my private investigator managed to track down Jian’s escort for the night. Though the escort was nervous about getting involved in a legal case, her heart went out for Jackie and the devastation this incident had caused him and his family. She bravely agreed to provide us with a written statement confirming that Jian had not left the karaoke bar at midnight as the bar originally claimed, but rather that he had stayed there to drink until early in the morning.Her testimony was essential in proving that Jian’s intoxication that morning was a direct result of the many drinks he was served at the karaoke bar the night before. With this new information we were able to secure a million dollar recovery for Jackie and his family.Jackie is now going into his sophomore year at a local NYC College. He wears a prosthetic so sophisticated that you can barely notice his limp. What began as a tragedy has become only a temporary hurdle testing the resolve of a strong young man and his ever-supportive parents. Though Jackie will never get his foot back, his million dollar recovery will ensure that his medical needs are taken care for the rest of his life, and that he will have additional money to invest in his future.

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In 2003 when Evander Childs High School student Jamie Perez was slashed by two of his classmates, his attorney filed suit against the City of New York for the lax conditions that allowed this incident to occur. A Bronx judge found the City responsible for the school’s negligence. All of this made sense because the City has been largely in control of the public education system since Mayor Bloomberg’s dramatic education reforms in 2002.When the city appealed the decision, however, an appellate court dismissed the case altogether because of a bureaucratic booby trap that required attorneys to file suit against the otherwise defunct Board of Education rather than the City in all cases against the public school system. Jamie Perez and his family were left without a dime.This is just one of many instances where the City of New York has used its authority to deflect legitimate lawsuits that may cost the City large sums of money. The City controls an elaborate system of corporate entities, and in the event of an accident the victim is required to file a Notice of Claim to the correct entity within 90 days of the accident for the City to ever be held liable. If, as in the case of Jamie Perez, it is filed with the wrong party, the case against the City gets dismissed.No other defendant in New York is granted this benefit. The City has constructed the most convoluted organizational structure imaginable so that any attorney filing suit against the City has to be extremely careful to avoid having their case thrown out.Jamie Perez’ lawyer, like many lawyers who have been tripped up by this system, is now being sued for malpractice as a result of his mistake.The ordeals that Jamie Perez and his attorney have faced for the last decade make up only a small part of the bigger pattern of the City’s clever shirking of responsibility when faced with a lawsuit.Sources: New York Times, “The Board of Education Lives On, If Only to Be Sued” May 5, 2013.NYC Department of Education, “DOE Leadership” 2013.