Expanding Expunction to Rejuvenate Society: 4 Reasons Why Texas Needs It

For those who do not know, expunction is the process of removing a criminal record from the public eye. This is a powerful way for people to move on with their lives, but it is currently very limited in how it is used.

According to Lassiter Criminal Defense in Dallas, it can really only be used for those who were arrested or tried without being found guilty, minors who committed small infractions (such as underaged drinking), or those who were found guilty of very minor crimes (like public intoxication, driving without a license, and theft of less than $100).

Its great that for those in such a situation that expunction is possible, but Texas needs to expand these possibilities to include far more people convicted of a crime. Not sure you buy that argument? Consider these four reasons why expunction needs to go far beyond what it does today.

People Need Another Chance

This is, of course, the big reason. While some crimes may be so bad that they should always stay on a record, there is plenty of space between those particularly heinous crimes and the ones that can currently be covered by expunction. Should someone who committed assault at the age of 20 be forced to live under that cloud when they are married and peaceful at 45? Should someone who stole $1000 worth of jewelry in a desperate moment have that conviction around thirty years later? It seems unnecessary to shackle people with these conviction records for decades after theyve paid their dues to society.

There Are More Convicts Today Than Ever Before

This is a particularly pressing issue because there are so many more convicts and former convicts than in previous times. Its well known we need to reform our justice system to find a better way to deal with many of our societal problems, but for now, we need to find a way to help the huge number of people going through the system return to society.

It Makes Convicts More Productive for All of Us

And if those people can more effectively return to society, we will all benefit. A conviction can often be the reason someone fails to move up in their career. They may struggle to find that first job, and the jobs they do find may be well below their capabilities. Even then, once they have a job, they may be passed up for deserved promotions because of a bias against them for old mistakes long since paid for and otherwise forgotten. If we remove all of this through expunction, the individual can be more useful to society as a whole.

It Helps Us Avoid Repeat Offenders

One of the reasons we see so much repeat offending of the law is because people feel unable to break out of the cycle they are put in. Its easy to see why they feel that way when you consider the reasons above.

If someone pays for their crimes, they need to be able to be brought back into society, with the same kind of opportunities afforded that others have. Otherwise, they may feel they have no choice but to return to crime.

All of these reasons should really drive home how expanding expunction in Texas would do a lot not just to help those coming out of the justice system, but all of us.

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Does New York have a medical malpractice problem?

Every year, the state is among those with the highest number of medical malpractice cases. In 2008, for instance, New York and New Jersey were the only states that had more than 1,000 cases of medical malpractice filed. That year, New York had more than 4,000 cases, almost quadruple that of New Jersey.

And while medical malpractice cases dropped by significant margins in other states (more than 30 percent in Connecticut and New Jersey), the decline in New York was only one percent.

It’s not just the number of cases, it’s how many are leading to big payouts. New York joined just four other states (Pennsylvania, New Jersey, California, and Florida) in paying out 48% of cases or more.

These numbers are significant and tell us several important things: first, New York has an above average, perhaps even abnormal, number of medical malpractice cases. And second, those numbers will only get more glaring compared to other states if the decrease in cases continues to drop by such a measly rate.

Whether this is a positive or negative for the state depends on which side of the case someone sits on. If a doctor, it’s a sign that insurance is sure to be high in a state that is already among the most expensive to live in. It’s also a sign that patients are more likely to be looking for errors and lawsuits are likely to be more frequent.

On the other hand, these statistics may be signs of a properly functioning system in which patients that have been harmed or killed due to medical malpractice are seeing their fair share of justice dolled out.

Medical error is the third most common cause of death in America, and though the percentage of errors that are due to malpractice are hard to estimate, it may be that New York’s numbers are closer to the truth than, say, those numbers coming from Kansas. There is any number of ways a doctor or other medical professional might make a mistake that could be deadly. And the fact lawyers are so keen upon this issue may not only be about the money, there is some justice to be sought out here.

Still, in all things related to health care, the cost of such issues must be considered. The more medical malpractice suits and the more suits that lead to payouts, the higher the cost of care will be for the consumer, and the higher the insurance will be as well.

Looking through that lens, New York does indeed have a medical malpractice problem, at least as much it has a health care affordability problem. Should health care reform take another step forward (or backward) in the coming years, malpractice suits may be a cost-saving element worth looking at.

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Common Types of Product Liability Cases

Common Types of Product Liability Cases

Designers, manufacturers, and sellers have the legal responsibility of ensuring that the products they put on the market are safe. If a product has been defective and has triggered an accident that has caused an injury, one of these parties may be held liable. This is called product liability.

According to the website of the Dallas accident attorneys of the Benton Law Firm, product liability cases can be generally categorized into three: defectively manufactured products, defectively designed products, and failure to provide adequate warnings or instructions.

Defectively manufactured products

Any defect that has occurred because of manufacturing issues may make the product viable for a product liability case. The most common issues include the use of poor-quality materials and the practice of inferior workmanship.

These instances are some of the most neglectful types of product liabilities, especially on cases where the design and the idea of the product are good but the product still fails just because of manufacturing defects.

Defectively designed products

Even though the product is manufactured by using high-quality materials and by practicing superior workmanship, it can still be defective if its design has inherent flaws. Design flaws can be categorized as well:

  • The product has inherently dangerous features
  • The product has useless parts, especially if these parts are dangerous
  • The product does not pass safety standards
  • The risks of using the product are greater than the product’s benefits

Failure to provide adequate warnings or instructions

Some products can be dangerous, and their dangerous nature may not be as obvious to some consumers. For this reason, these products should have labels indicating their dangerous features and how they are used safely. Failure to do so may result into accidents and injuries.

These products can be designed and manufactured well, but they can still injure someone if there are no adequate labels. They become even more dangerous if they have design and manufacturing defects.

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Overcoming Anger Issues

Anger is a potentially destructive emotion, not only for those that suffer from its extended periods or experience its violent outbursts, but for others that may be attacked by someone else’s surge of rage, physically or emotionally. Uncontrolled or poorly controlled anger can reek havoc in an individual’s personal and professional life and can greatly affect one’s friendships and relationships. According to psychotherapist David Seddon, 32 percent of people in a mental health study said they had a close friend or family member with anger issues, and 20 percent of the same group had ended relationships because of a partner’s anger. These numbers indicate that a large portion of the population struggles with feelings of anger, making it an increasingly important issue.

Seddon further notes that anger is a secondary emotion, caused by something else you are feeling. Anger may happen as a response to fear, pain, stress, and a number of other things. Identifying the root of your anger will be extremely helpful in learning to control it, as dealing with anger on its own is only treating a symptom of the real problem at hand, especially if it is a recurring issue. Not dealing with the primary emotional issue, especially over time, can result in the emergence of other mental health problems. For example, your anger may be caused by too much stress in your life. Not treating the stress can lead to other health problems like obesity, depression, and anxiety. If you are having recurring issues with anger, therefore, it is paramount to seek help from a counselor or professional so that the root of your anger can be effectively determined and treated and the development of more mental problems prevented.

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Types of Commercial Litigation

Businesses are involved in a wide range of transactions with other companies and with individuals. As they go about with doing their business, it is likely that these businesses can get involved in disputes. Every business aims to achieve their goals but when they get involved in disputes, their business operations can become affected. According to the website of Russo, Russo & Slania, PC, it is pertinent for these issues to be resolved quickly and effectively.

There are different types of commercial litigation that businesses can get involved in. A breach of contract happens when one or more parties are unable to meet the terms stipulated in a contract. For instance, when a supplier is unable to do their part in the delivery of goods to your company, that supplier breaches the contract that they signed with their customer. A contract is legal and binding so both parties have a duty to perform the terms of their contract.

Partner and Member Disputes

No matter how healthy is a business relationship, it is still likely to give rise to disputes. General partners in a partnership and members of a limited liability company have a “fiduciary duty” to each other. Two of these duties include good faith and fairness. When the member or partner fails in the performance of these duties, this is where conflicts will arise.

Employment Disputes

Disputes with employees may include discrimination, wrongful terminations, wage and hour disputes, and others. Sometimes businesses with job applicants may also arise when the prospective employee claims that they were rejected on the basis of discrimination. An employee may want to recover lost wages in the form of a lawsuit against their employer.

These are just some of the disputes that can result to commercial litigation. Getting involved in such kinds of lawsuits could eat up a company’s time and resources. If necessary, the company should try to resolve the dispute without going into a legal battle.

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How To Prevent Car Accidents

Car accidents can happen anytime. According to the Association For Safe International Road Travel, car accidents rank as the 9th leading cause of death and accounts for 2.2% of all deaths worldwide. In addition, nearly 1.3 million people die in road crashes and an additional 20 – 50 million injuries or deaths. According to the website of a Des Moines car accident attorney, car accidents can leave a person badly injured, requiring significant medical care, or experience a long and difficult recovery.

Persons involved in car accidents also face staggering costs on medical bills and repairs. As a responsible driver, you can do something to keep yourself from being part of the statistics. Here are some tips on how you can prevent car accidents:

1. Don’t drink when driving

Driving while intoxicated is one of the reasons for car accidents. Alcohol can impair judgment causing you to react slowly to road conditions. The NHTSA revealed that in 2012, drunk driving resulted to more than 10,0000 deaths. Motor vehicle accidents amounted to an estimated $37 billion per year. So as much as possible, avoid drinking when you need to drive.

2. Avoid using your phone when driving

In 2013, a NHTSA report revealed that 3,154 people were killed as a result of distracted driving. If you really need to call or send a text message, stop in a corner. In many states, distracted driving is now illegal.

3. Drive slowly

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) revealed that speeding accounted for 29 percent of motor vehicle crash deaths. From that number, 32 percent occurred between 3 pm and 9 pm. So make sure you follow the speed limit especially when driving in the dark.

4. Wear seat belts

Statistics have revealed that 63% of car accident deaths were due to failure to wear seat belts. The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration revealed that lap-shoulder belt systems can reduce the risk of serious injury and fatality by 50 percent. Seat belts protect the internal organs during a crash. It also lessens head contacts and keeps passengers in place.

5. Obey traffic rules

Traffic rules are in place for your safety. When driving, always practice road courtesy. If you respect other drivers, they will also respect you. So make sure you always follow the rules. This way, you will not go into any trouble as well.

On your own, you can do your share in preventing car accidents. By being a responsible and courteous driver, you can keep yourself safe from injuries and deaths.

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Medical Malpractice Facts You Ought To Know

People who are working in the medical profession follow the strictest professional standards and for an understandable reason. Doctors, nurses, and other medical professionals are responsible for the lives of their patients. But just like any of us, they are just humans and can make mistakes. According to the website of a Sheboygan personal injury attorney, a minor medical error can have serious consequences for patients which could lead to injury or worse death.

According to the website of Crowe & Mulvey LLP, the professional responsibilities of doctors and other medical personnel are extremely important. Unfortunately, medical malpractice can happen to anyone and it can have a lasting impact on the lives of the patients and their families. Here are some facts about medical malpractice that is worth knowing:

  • The Journal of American Medical Association (JAMA) revealed that medical malpractice is the third leading cause of death in the US after heart disease and cancer.
  • The top five areas of medical malpractice claims are diagnosis, surgery, treatment, obstetrics, and medication/anesthesia
  • More than 30% of doctors pay more than $10,000 worth of medical malpractice insurance
  • According to reports by the Institute of Medicine, preventable medical errors have accounted for deaths of between 44,000 to 98,000 hospital patients in the United States per year
  • Medical malpractice can be prevented. In fact, 8 out of 10 of the problems that occurred in the healthcare system were due to human error.
  • Only 1 out of 6 doctors with over five malpractice payouts have been disciplined by state medical boards
  • 4 out of 10 physicians revealed that their monthly patient care volume can result to mistakes
  • Preventable medical errors have caused injury or death to around 200,000 to 400,000 people
  • New York, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Massachusetts, and Connecticut registered the five highest medical malpractice payouts. On the other hand, North Dakota, Texas, Wisconsin, Mississipi, and Indiana have the lowest.
  • Healthcare spending for medical malpractice in the United States accounts for only 0.3 percent of healthcare spending. On the other hand, around $29 billion was spent for treating preventable medical errors.
  • There has been a steady decline in malpractice insurance premiums for doctors. In 2013, internists rates dropped to 1.6%, general surgeons by 1.3%, and OB-Gyn decreased by 1.7%.
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Understanding The Divorce Process

Marriage is a culmination of the partnership between a man and woman. It is a union that is designed to last forever hence the line, “till death do us part.” As a Cedar Rapids divorce lawyer may put it, marriage is expected to last for the rest of the lives of the couple. Unfortunately, there are certain situations that can lead the husband and wife to decide to end their marriage.

While the divorce rate in the United States is high at 50%, several studies have shown that married people still live longer and feel more secure. Married couples are also known to be healthier than single people and are less likely to have surgery, develop cancer, or suffer from heart attacks. In addition, a recent study from the Pew Research Center revealed a declining rate of Americans who have never been married after a divorce. The study revealed that 42 million Americans have never been married after a divorce.

When married people with kids decide to divorce, it is quite clear that the most affected would be their children. But up to what extent will the effect be on the children? One of the biggest problems that divorce can have on children is choosing which parent to live with. This is most common among kids who parents divorced while they were still small. Having no capability to choose yet, the parents gets engaged in a custody battle which could have a detrimental effect on their child.

According to the website of The Maynard Law Firm, PLLC, ending a marriage can be complicated and can have lasting consequences. Many studies have shown that children of parents who divorce exhibit a wide range of behavioral and conduct problems as opposed with children with two parents. Children of divorced parents show aggressive, impulsive, and antisocial behaviors. They tend to have lower academic achievement and show a deterioration from their previous school performance.

A major national survey involving 20,000 adolescents revealed that children of divorced parents performed worst on the aspect of satisfaction with life, sense of personal control, trust, and friendship. The National Surveys of Children revealed that divorce was associated with a higher incidence of mental health problems in children such as depression, withdrawal from friends, aggressive, impulsive, or hyperactive behavior.

For children whose parents divorced during their teenage years, they show the tendency to show disturbing behaviors such as increased aggression, loss of self-confidence, and sense of loneliness. They also show early signs of sexual activity, substance abuse or dependence, hostile behavior, and others.

Among preschoolers, there is a tendency for self-blame. They develop the belief that it was their behavior that caused the divorce of their parents. They also show heightened sexual and erotic play. While this is a likelihood in disrupted families, investigations have not shown any increase in sexual abuse.

Divorce can also lead to suicidal tendencies among children. The child will think that his or her parents have rejected or lost interest in them. Finally, studies revealed that the life spanof children of divorced parents before they reach the age of 21 have shortened by an average of four years.

These are just some of the effects divorce can have on children. So married couple should think twice before deciding to end their marriage because the most affected individual will be their children.

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Revealing The Dangers of Power Morcellators

Morcellators is a powerful surgical device used for removing large masses of tissues during laparoscopic surgery. In hysterectomy, these devices are used to mince up the large masses of tissues into smaller pieces so that it can be extracted from the abdomen. Now days, morcellators are being pulled from the market and their use in some surgical procedures is now being discouraged due to the potential cancer risks associated with them.

Since April 2014, the Food and Drug Administration has been discouraging the use of morcellators for performing uterine procedures. The FDA warns that these devices may help spread cancer during fibroid removal. Studies conducted by the agency revealed that one in 352 women who undergo surgery for uterine fibroids suffer from undiagnosed uterine sarcoma. In addition, 1 in 498 women are found to have undiagnosed leiomyosarcoma.

After undergoing morcellator procedure, the lifespan of the patient is approximately 2 to 3 years. Only 15 percent of women diagnosed with Stage 4 leiomyosarcoma are likely to survive after 5 years. Women are 4x more likely to die from uternine sarcoma if they have undergone the morcellation procedure.

According to the website of Williams Kherkher, morcellators are no longer safe and effective medical devices for performing various procedures like hysterectomy or myomectomy. The FDA issued a second warning regarding these devices in November 2014. Pharmaceutical company Johnson & Johnson then recalled three of its power morcellators after results of a study revealed a significant correlation between the use of morcellators and the development of cancer.

As part of its safety warning, the FDA recommended the inclusion of a boxed warning informing doctors about the potetial cancer risk of using morcellators and then sharing these information with patients prior to their surgery.

As of May 2015, the FBI has been conducting investigations as to whether manufacturers of the morcellators are violating the law by not reporting the risks associated with the procedure.

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Maximize Your Profits With CRM for Roofing Contractors

As a roofing contractor or landscaper, your main focus is to keep your customers happy and maximize your potential profits. But it is not enough to seal the deal with a new customer. You also have to ensure that your customers will have a favorable experience working with you. However, some contractors find it hard to manage their potential leads. This is where having CRM for roofing contractors can come in handy.

According to the website of Followup Power, having a CRM for roofing contractors can help you save time and money by streamlining your sales pipeline and organizing things for you. A CRM can help your roofing business in a lot of ways. From tracking jobs from lead status to completion. It can help you organize your business as well. There are different kinds of CRM available in the market today. There are systems located on a local computer but contractors cannot utilize them when they are in the field.There are also cloud-based ones which can be connected from anywhere there is Internet access.

Considerations When Looking For CRM For Roofing Contractors

There are different CRM software that are available in the market today so finding the right one can prove to be a daunting task. Here are 4 things that roofing contractors should consider when buying CRM software:

  • Convenience – When looking for a CRM for your roofing business, bear in mind that some of your employees may not be technologically savvy. Even if they browse the Internet, they do not always have an understanding of technology. So make sure that the software you have in mind offers convenience.
  • Scalability – If your company wants to expand, can the software grow with you as well?
  • Support – This is one of the most important considerations when looking for a CRM software. You may need to have queries addressed immediately so customer support is necessary.
  • Current Business Process – A software that makes you change your existing business process is probably not the right choice. You should always be the boss when it comes to these processes.

Choosing a CRM for roofing contractors is essential for their business. It will help simplify your business process and generate more potential leads for you.

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