Law Offices of Paul Levin June 2018

LAW NEWS JUNE 2018

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IT’S ME! JACK! H i. My name is Jack. You may know me from the famous section in CT Law News called “Where’s Jack?” Paul Levin and my awesome mom, Straight From the Dog’s Mouth how to interact with people in need, awkward strangers, and all types of medical equipement. One time, my mom put this piece of food on the floor, but I wasn’t allowed to eat it. I had to show the instructors that I could walk past it and not scarf it down. It’s what I think driving by Dunkin’ Donuts or Starbucks must feel like for humans. Another time, we were doing the 1–3 hours of weekly community work we were encouraged to do while training, and there were these shiny tile floors at the mall. Let me tell you, those things were really frightening. I used to be so scared of them. My mom said I froze the first time we went there. So one time, she brought this awesomely cool therapy dog friend of mine, Ronan. He’s a gigantic Irish wolfhound and boy is he brave. Ronan showed me that the floors weren’t scary, so then I went and walked with him, and it was all good. That’s what friends are for! Kelly Kasheta, thought it would be super fun if I got to tell you a little about myself … Hang on. I see a squirrel out front. Hey, squirrel! Hey! Hey! Hey! It’s me, Jack!

He doesn’t want to play. Sorry, where was I? Oh, that’s right. Me. Well, I met my super amazing family in 2015. They’re just the best. My mom, Kelly, loves me, feeds me, and lets me work with people to help with their needs. I’m so thankful for my mom. She adopted me when I was 2 years old. See, my previous mom was very sick, and she also loved me so much, so she decided to surrender me to a shelter so I could have a better life. When I was dropped off at Collie Rescue of the Carolinas, I wasn’t sure what was going to happen. This super nice rescue lady named Jean knew just what to do. Luckily, Kelly had rescued two dogs before me from that shelter, and the awesome rescue lady knew exactly what I needed and where I belonged. You see, Jean and the CRC have placed over 1,000 collies in their time as a Collie Rescue. In the world of collies, I guess you could say I’m a little unusual. You see, my breed comes in four colors. I’m a white collie, which is not seen a lot. To be classified as a white collie, your body has to be at least 75 percent white. I’m also unique because I have a colored head. My mom knew this when she adopted me because she’s had collies her entire life. She understands our breed and knows all our health issues, grooming requirements, and the complications we have when we get older. When my mom and I started the process of becoming a therapy dog team, let me tell you, it was quite an undertaking. We had to go through a 12- week training course taught by Healers With Halos Therapy Dogs, a CT Chapter of Bright and Beautiful Therapy Dogs. They taught us a lot of stuff in lectures, which was great for my mom, and I was able to get some quality snooze time in. But once we reached the second half of the course, there was no napping. It was work, work, work. I had to learn new commands and

I became very close to my mom throughout this process. We developed this inseparable bond because of all the training we did together. Our awesome teachers taught us the “three T’s” of therapy training: touch, talk, and target. It put us totally in tune with each other.

“I’M ABLE TO COMFORT PEOPLE IN NEED AND BRING THEM JOY.”

Now that I’m a certified therapy dog, I get to have a job! Most dogs can’t say that. But like some of you humans

who work with my mom and Paul, I love what I do. I’m able to comfort people in need and bring them joy. There are so many humans who need what I can give, and I’m super fortunate to give it to them. We work at the VA hospital, The Caring Connection Adult Day Care, and St. Bernard School over the course of each month. I not only love visiting the patients, clients, and students, but it’s so rewarding to help all the awesome folks who work at these places. They are the best! When I put my vest on, it’s time to go to work. But once it’s off, I get to do my favorite thing ever — loving and snuggling on the couch. Well, I see my neighbors are out in the yard, and my siblings are barking at them like crazy. I should probably go say hi. I super duper loved talking to you guys. I hope we can hang out again because I love humans. My mom said I had a profound impact on her, but it’s you all who make me feel … Who’s at the door?! Who are you? Who are you? I’m Jack! Want to play?! –Jack Kasheta

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This Father’s Day, thousands of dads will receive a “No. 1 Dad” mug to sip coffee out of at the office. But the following dads took that “No. 1” to a new level. Brian Munn gave his son a liver transplant. When doctors discovered that baby Caleb Munn had a rare disease called biliary atresia, they told his parents that he was unlikely to survive past age 2 without a liver transplant. Luckily, his father was a perfect match, and he eagerly donated part of his liver in March 2015 to save his son’s life. Greg Alexander battled a bear for his son’s life. While camping in the backcountry of Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Greg Alexander was startled awake at dawn by the screams of his 16-year-old son, Gabriel. He rushed out of his hammock to see a black bear dragging his son away by the head. Without hesitation, he kicked the beast in the side, and when that didn’t work, he leapt onto its back and started punching it in the face. When the bear finally released Gabriel, Greg threw rocks until FATHERS WHO PUT THEIR LIVES ON THE LINE FOR THEIR KIDS 3 Awesome Dads In 2010, a power plant in Middletown, Connecticut, exploded, killing six people. Kleen Energy Systems had been constructing the plant for over two years and was just four months away from being operational when the 620-megawatt power plant was eviscerated. The local fire marshal ruled that the explosion was the result of a “blowdown” — a process where natural gas is purged from a pipeline to test its functionality. An inadvertent spark, or potentially a propane heater, ignited the gas being blown out and caused an explosion that nearby residents referred to as “a sonic boom.” We came face-to-face with this incident when an employee of one of the leading contractors responsible for the accident rear-ended our client. The company the worker was employed at established a precedent during that 2010 litigation that benefited our case. Our client had sustained injuries to his lower back and suffered mild brain trauma resulting from a concussion, so restitution was not an option — it was necessary. As the proceedings developed, the defendant’s legal team attempted to settle for pennies on the dollar. While we thought there might have been a willingness to double the last offer before the verdict, we knew this case was meant to finish in the hands of a jury. We Serious Injuries

it fled. His son was hurt but made a full recovery in the hospital over the coming weeks. Artur Magomedov saved his daughters from ISIS. Artur Magomedov was devastated to discover that his wife had taken his 3- and 10-year-old daughters from their home in Dagestan under the cover of night, flown to Turkey, and crossed into Syria to join ISIS. But he resolved to get his kids back. After a long, hazardous journey, he arrived in Tabqa to embrace his two daughters. To leave the caliphate — under penalty of death — they hitched a ride to the border one night and crawled along a railway line until they were within 70 meters of the border. Then they ran under fire from Turkish border guards until they could scramble into tall grasses. After some help from the Russian consulate in Istanbul, they made it back home, together again and safe.

DESERVE SERIOUS EXPERIENCE

continued to do our due diligence and fight for our client with skilled and comprehensive representation. The jury rendered its verdict, and the final figure was nearly eight times the value of the last offer the defendant had presented. Serious injuries deserve serious experience, and that’s exactly what we were able to provide for this client. If you know someone who needs our service, contact us today.

Attorneys Paul Levin & Kelly Kasheta

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THE LAW AND HOW IT APPLIES TO YOU Can You Get a DUI in a Self-Driving Car?

Future Passengers may be classified as operators in a self-driving car because the vehicle has to be started by human interaction, and the autopilot feature has to be activated in the same manner. You may even be charged with a DUI if your car isn’t on but you’re in the driver’s seat with the keys in the ignition. In these cases, the intent is factored in along with the interpretation of the law. Where the waters become muddied is when an autonomous driving car does not have to have a passenger in the driver’s seat to operate. In this instance, it’s still plausible that the person riding home could take control over the vehicle, so certain physical control laws could come into play that would still result in a DUI. Now, if a passenger couldn’t take control of the car and was not in the driver’s seat, they would not be in violation of most state DUI laws. Currently, and for the foreseeable future, all self-driving cars require a fully attentive driver at the wheel, leaving that person directly responsible for any event that transpires in their car. Whether that will change soon has yet to be decided. Until then, safe travels — whether you or your vehicle is in control.

It’s no doubt that self-driving cars are the wave of the future. But as with any new frontier of technology, the laws governing how to use these advancements are still catching up. For example, can you get a DUI in a self-driving car? The answer isn’t as simple as you might think. History When Tesla, among other major auto manufacturers, announced autonomous driving capabilities, they either purposefully or inadvertently made sure the law could keep up with their new technology. For the autopilot feature to work, a passenger had to be sitting in the driver’s seat. The requirement meant that anyone behind the wheel was classified as an operator and could, in fact, be arrested for driving under the influence. In January of this year, this exact situation played out on the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge. A man fell asleep at the wheel of his Tesla on his way home. Local police monitor the bridge and were immediately on the scene after reports surfaced of the napping driver. When he was pulled over, the vehicle’s operator assured the officers everything was okay by explaining that the car was on autopilot — only, it was not okay. The operator’s blood alcohol level was double the legal limit, and he was arrested on suspicion of DUI.

Jack?

FATHER’S DAY

Where’s

Chili Lime ChickenWings

Jack and Kelly are a certified therapy dog and handler team with Healers With Halos Therapy Dogs. Jack is a 5-year-old rescue collie adopted from Collie Rescue of the Carolinas. He is certified by the Reading Education Assistance Dogs (R.E.A.D.) program and attained his CGC title from the American Kennel Club. Jack works many venues, bringing comfort and happiness to the young and old.

Ingredients

• 4 pounds

• 1 lime, halved • Extra-virgin olive oil • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper • Chopped cilantro for garnish

chicken wings • 1 stick unsalted butter, softened • 1 1/4 tablespoons

Thai red curry paste

• 1/4 cup honey • 1/4 cup soy sauce

Instructions

1. Heat oven to 425 F. 2. Rinse wings under cold water and

pat dry. Season liberally with salt and pepper, and drizzle with olive oil. Roast

on a baking sheet for 25 minutes or until skin becomes crisp and brown. 3. Blend butter, red curry paste, honey, and soy sauce in a large mixing bowl. 4. Toss wings in butter mixture. Squeeze lime juice on top, transfer to serving plate, and garnish with cilantro.

JACK VISITING CLIENTS AT THE CARING CONNECTION ADULT DAYCARE IN WINDSOR, CT

Inspired by foodnetwork.com

Attorneys Paul Levin & Kelly Kasheta

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40 Russ Street | Hartford, CT 06106 (860) 560-7226 www.connecticutinjuryhelp.com Inside THIS ISSUE • Meet Jack!

3 FathersWho Risked It All for Their Kids

June’s Case Highlight

DUI Laws for Driverless Vehicles

Father’s Day Chili Lime ChickenWings What’s All the Fuss About Blue Light?

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ANewsletter for Clients and Friends FromAttorneys Paul Levin and Kelly Kasheta

HOW TO PROTECT YOUR EYES AND MINIMIZE EXPOSURE The Hazards of Blue Light

You may have been warned about blue light and its impending threat to your eyes. It comes from your computer screen, your phone, and even from the sun. Why is this form of light harmful, and how can you keep your eyes safe? Is Blue Light a NewThing? Blue light occurs in nature and is nothing new. However, because many electronics emit blue light, it’s more of an issue now than it was just 10 years ago. Backlit LED screens emit strong blue light waves, so our use of devices like cellphones, tablets, and flat-screen TVs means we are exposed to more blue light than ever before. Why Are Eye Doctors Worried? Blue light isn’t inherently bad — it’s found in sunlight and lightbulbs — but our increased exposure to it might be. Our eyes are pretty good at blocking UV rays but not so good at blocking blue light. Blue light has a higher energy output than other forms of light, so instead of being filtered by the corneas and lenses, almost all of it reaches the more sensitive retinas. The high energy output of blue light and our eyes’ inability to protect the retinas from it appears to cause damage similar to macular degeneration, an eye disease mostly affecting people over 65 that

can lead to blindness. These similarities to macular degeneration have scientists worried that our increased exposure to blue light could lead to more cases of it. HowCan YouMinimize Exposure? Many computers and electronic devices have a “night shift” option built into them. Enabling this feature will dim the screen and lower the amount of blue light that your device emits. There are also removable filters you can put on your computer screen. Brands like RetinaShield/Tech Armor and Eyesafe are designed to limit the amount of blue light your eyes are exposed to. To avoid eye strain, talk to your eye doctor about blue light glasses. These tinted glasses, which come in prescription and nonprescription versions, reduce the amount of blue light that reaches your eyes. Remember, blue light itself is just a natural form of light and isn’t inherently bad. During the day, it can even be beneficial to get some natural blue light from sunshine — while wearing sunglasses, of course. But it’s also a good idea to take precautions to protect your eyes from artificial blue light, especially if your work environment and hobbies expose you to it frequently.

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