Dickerson Oxton - March 2019

816-268-1960 | 913-428-8220 www.dickersonoxton.com

MAR. 2019




Leaders and Role ModelS THE WOMEN WHO INSPIRE ME


This being Women’s History Month, I wanted to take some time to reflect on a few of the women who have directly inspired me. There are plenty of women from history I could draw on who are widely celebrated leaders, but I want to keep this article more personal. Therefore, I’ve decided to shine a spotlight on two women frommy own life because I wouldn’t be where I am today without them: my fellow attorney, Nancy Wilson, and my mother. Nancy is a trailblazer in the legal community. While in her 30s, this former Pennsylvania schoolteacher decided to put herself through law school, and soon after, she was working her way up the ladder at one of the largest firms in Philadelphia. That’s when she was offered partner at a firm right here in Kansas City. Few women held that title at the time. After making the move, Nancy asked her son to tell his college friends that her firm was looking for a new desk clerk. A young man jumped at the opportunity for the position: my future husband, Tom. After Tom started with her firm, Nancy saw he really cared about the work he was doing and took him under her wing. She mentored him, helping him get into the law school where we eventually met — so in an indirect way, I guess I met my husband through Nancy! After Tom introduced us, Nancy became a role model to me as well.

While I didn’t get the direct tutelage Tom received, Nancy did a lot to prepare me for the unique challenges facing women in law. She’d talk to me about her struggles, even as a partner at her firm, and did her best to give advice on how to deal with men’s intimidation tactics both inside and outside the courtroom. To this day, whenever I find myself struggling against that glass ceiling, I try to put things in perspective. Nancy, like so many other women of her generation, had it even harder than I do now. They pushed against sexism and misogyny every day so that women like me could have the opportunities we have. Things are still far from equal, but thinking of their sacrifice gives me the strength to take a deep breath and trudge forward — not only for myself, but for the next generation, including my daughter. sacrifice gives methe strength to take a deep breath and trudge forward." Speaking of family, the other woman I wanted to shout out this month is my mother. I’ve always looked up to her example. She always made time to play with my brother and me when we were growing up; some of "Things are still farfrom equal,but thinkingof their


my fondest memories from childhood are sitting with my mother, dressing and posing Maple Town toys. And on top of everything else, she was an incredible cook. Now, with two kids of my own, I’mmore in awe than ever at what my mother was able to accomplish. She really was one of those people who made parenting look easy despite the fact my brother and I were probably a handful. To this day, she’s a wonderful grandma, always willing to use her imagination and play with her grandkids. I know that nothing can prepare you for motherhood, but I feel like I had the best possible teacher. Nancy and my mother influenced me in very different ways, but both have informed the woman I am now. From the personal to the professional, it’s important for everyone to have role models they can learn from. That’s why Women’s History Month is so important — to show girls and boys the outstanding women who helped shape this world and set them dreaming about their own bright future. 1 –Chelsea Dickerson








Know Who You're Hiring 3 QUESTIONS TO ASK ANY LAWYER Finding an attorney is a big job. After all, this person is going to represent you and your case, and you want to make sure you’re in good hands. Thankfully, most lawyers offer free consultations. While these no-cost meetings are designed to help lawyers understand the strength of your claim, you should also use this opportunity to gauge the professional you’re thinking about hiring. Here are a few questions you should ask during these consultations. Very few people would be brave enough to sign up as a lawyer’s very first case. When you’re looking for representation, you want someone who has more than just a theoretical understanding of the law. Practical experience is important, especially when it’s tied to the specific category of practice your case aligns with. Plenty of lawyers tout their decades of experience working in the law, but if 90 percent of their experience is in criminal law and you’re looking to recover damages from a complex Have You Been Misdiagnosed? SOMETIMES EVEN DOCTORS GET ITWRONG WHAT’S YOUR LEGAL BACKGROUND?

Go Natural with Your Antibiotics 2 WAYS TO FIGHT BACTERIA Our world is becoming increasingly antibacterial with practically every office, medical facility, and school being equipped with dozens of containers of hand sanitizer and sanitizing wipes. While these products claim to be 99.9 percent effective at killing bacteria, the harsh chemicals dry out our skin, and over time, bacteria become more and more resistant to these agents. Doctors, too, are blamed for overprescribing antibiotics. As a result, we’re hearing more and more about “superbugs” — strains of harmful bacteria that cause severe illness and are not easily remedied by antibiotics. But you can still protect yourself and your family against illness-causing bacteria without resorting to harsh chemicals and medications. The answer is to go all-natural! Here are two options that are completely natural yet totally effective against the microorganisms that make us sick. RAW HONEY Most honey you find at the store has been pasteurized and filtered, rendering it far less effective when it comes to its antibacterial properties. On the other hand, raw, unfiltered honey is an incredible antiseptic. Even better than your average raw honey is manuka honey, which comes from New Zealand. Its antibacterial properties are potent enough that hospitals around the world keep it on hand to treat certain kinds of infections and burns. If you get a cut, applying raw honey to the wound can keep out harmful, infection-causing bacteria while killing any existing bacteria. Not only does the honey help prevent infection but it can also help reduce healing time. Raw honey can also help alleviate internal infections, such as peptic ulcers caused by Helicobacter pylori . Manuka honey is particularly great for this — just add some to hot tea or water and drink! OREGANO A study published in the International Journal of Molecular Sciences took a look at the effectiveness of oregano against bacteria. It turns out certain compounds in oregano — carvacrol and thymol — make it a strong antibacterial and antifungal agent. The study found that oregano was effective against salmonella as well as other harmful microorganisms and fungi that make people sick. As an antibacterial, oregano is most useful as an essential oil. In this form, it’s highly potent, meaning you only need a drop or two in a glass of water for it to have an effect. You can drink it, or you can infuse a couple of drops into some coconut oil and apply to your skin. However, be warned that because it is potent, it should not be used on a regular, ongoing basis. Use only when needed and only for a few days at a time — and never use it undiluted!


personal injury case, they may not be the right lawyer for you.

“contingency fee billing.” This means the attorney only collects legal fees if you win your case. Regardless of what kind of structure the attorney you meet with uses, clearing up any questions you may have beforehand will prevent any confusion down the road.


Whether they’re criminal or civil, most cases boil down to a choice: Go to trial or try to reach an agreement out of court with the other side. Depending on the facts of your case, the first strategy may be more viable than the alternative. Still, you want to make sure that whichever approach an attorney chooses, it’s because they are primarily motivated by your best interests. Ask them to explain how


they approach cases like yours and to provide reasoning why choosing to settle is better than going to trial, or vice versa.

CAN YOU CLARIFY YOUR BILLING POLICY? During these free consultations, it’s best to ask about the attorney’s

Everything Popcorn

fees or billing structure before you decide to employ them. Some firms, including ours, offer

Inspired by Food & Wine magazine


When something is wrong, we trust doctors to tell us what the problem is and how we can fix it. Most of the time, this works. But on those rare occasions a doctor does not take the time to fully examine your symptoms or mistakenly attributes them to another cause, the results can be disastrous. Below are just a few examples of misdiagnosis that can lead to painful — or even fatal — consequences. COMMON MISDIAGNOSES • Heart attack misdiagnosed as indigestion or panic attack • Asthma misdiagnosed as bronchitis or having been caused by obesity • Lymph node inflammation treated as appendicitis • Stroke labeled as a migraine or other minor issue • Tumors misdiagnosed as “fatty tissues” WHAT YOU CAN DO For those who have been harmed by a misdiagnosis, including the financial strain of unnecessary treatments and medical costs, there are legal options available. A medical malpractice suit gives the patient

a means of recourse when the mistakes of a medical professional produce pain and suffering. A successful case can recover damages for medical costs, lost wages, and pain and suffering caused by

directions • 3/4 cup popcorn kernels • 2 tablespoons flaky sea salt • 1 teaspoon black sesame seeds • 2 teaspoons white sesame seeds • 2 teaspoons granulated garlic • 2 teaspoons granulated onion • 1/3 cup canola oil • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted 1. In a small skillet over medium heat, toast sesame seeds. Shake skillet often and cook until white seeds are golden and fragrant, about 2 minutes. Transfer to a small bowl and add garlic, onion, and salt. 2. In a large saucepan, combine popcorn kernels and oil. Cook over medium-high heat, covered, until popcorn kernels start to pop. Once popping, continue cooking and shaking the pan intermittently until popping ceases, about 3–5 minutes. 3. Transfer popcorn to a large mixing bowl. Pour in butter and toss to coat. Finally, add seasoning, toss again, and serve.

your doctor’s negligence. DO YOU HAVE A CASE?

Not every mistake made by a doctor qualifies as negligence. If you’re wondering if an interaction with a physician qualifies as medical malpractice, consider the following: • Did you have a doctor-patient relationship with this physician? • Did they fail to meet the standards of care a similarly trained physician should provide? Did the doctor’s failure to properly diagnose your symptoms actually and proximately cause your injuries? Sometimes determining the answer to these questions can be tricky. Experienced Kansas City medical malpractice specialists, our team at Dickerson Oxton Law Firm can help you understand the strength of your case and plan your next steps after a misdiagnosis. If you have been harmed by the negligent actions of your doctor, our team is here to help. •


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1200 Main St. Ste. 2120 Kansas City, MO 64105

816-268-1960 | 913-428-8220 www.dickersonoxton.com



The Women Who Inspire Me 2 Effective Natural Antibiotics 3 Questions to Ask Any Lawyer Have You Been Misdiagnosed? Take a Break Everything Popcorn Don’t Let the Rain Dampen Your Spirits


4 Rainy Day Activities


As the weather warms up, the urge to get out of the house becomes stronger. However, any plans you might have can be abruptly canceled due to rain. If you find yourself stuck inside for the day, here are a few activities to keep you occupied.

smattering against your windows creates the perfect background noise to delve into the pages of a new adventure.


Having a movie or TV series marathon is another great way to pass the time. You can watch some of the classics, like “Forrest Gump” or “Singing in the Rain,” fill the day with “The Lord of the Rings” series, or start a new Netflix show. If you want to involve your kids in the binge- watching, you can let them pick out one of their favorite movies too.


A wet and chilly day is an excellent opportunity to warm yourself up with some baked goods. Bake your favorite snickerdoodle cookies or fudge brownies, and pour yourself a mug full of hot chocolate or cider to get through the stormy day.


A rainy day is a great opportunity to pull out a puzzle. You can also grab your friends or family members and make the puzzle a team activity. With the whole day ahead of you, you’ll have several hours to devote to one of your favorite hobbies.


If you have a bookshelf full of novels you’ve not cracked open, a rainy day is the perfect time to jump in. Settle down on the sofa with a cuddly blanket and enjoy some uninterrupted reading. The rain

Don’t let the rain keep you down! Instead, take advantage of the weather and enjoy a cozy day at home.

ADVERTISING MATERIAL: The choice of a lawyer is an important decision and should not be based solely on advertisements. This newsletter is provided to former clients, individuals who have contacted the firm regarding representation, and individuals who have requested to be on the newsletter mailing list. This newsletter is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice or direct solicitation for employment of the firm on any particular legal matter.


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